One of the TV channels we receive where we are now is RTV (Retro TV). There are a lot of OLD shows that have really made us think about “days gone by”.
An old rerun of Lassie was on the other night and both of us realized it wasn’t the first ‘Timmy’ that had initially been on the show. It was the 2nd Timmy. Funny that we remembered that.
But it brought back a lot of recollections of old TV shows and how at times families were lucky if they pulled in one or two TV stations on those great big old TV’s. I think even this was before UHF.
I don’t remember a time growing up where there was not a TV (black and white for a very long time) and Dan CAN remember NOT having a TV (he’s older than me!).
I remember Walter Cronkite bringing us the news, which at age 5-6 or so, I could have cared less about watching him or the news. But my neighbor playmates were not as fortunate as us and did not have a TV, much less a radio so they were fascinated by anything that was on that big old tube. I use to get upset and try to get them to come out and play, but they would set there enthralled with Walter Cronkite (and occasionally Soupy Sales).
Or how many times Dad made me watch Leonard Bernstein conducting his symphony. While I enjoyed spending time with my Dad on the living room floor, sometimes with a big pan of popcorn, I sure didn’t like that kind of music (but I found later in life that I DID like it, so thanks for that Dad).
I remember one time missing Lassie because I would not finish my spinach (don’t like it to this day). I had to set at the table until I finished that spinach (which I did not finish) or until Lassie was over. Lassie was over so I finally was able to leave the table and join Mom and Dad in the living room.
Occasionally I would spend the night or a couple of nights with one or the other set of grandparents and of course they each had their favorite shows to watch.
My Grandpa and Grandma First were big “Jackie Gleason Show” fans. They each had their favorite chair they would sit in and they would drag over this HUGE old black rocker for me so I could set between them. This rocking chair, as I remember, had a thick leather seat and part of the back was thick and was covered in leather. I swear it was at least 3’ wide. Two kids could easily fit in it. More often than not I would fall asleep in that rocker and one of them would have to wake me up in order to go to bed.
My other Grandparents each had their favorite TV show; Grandma Cora liked The Edge of Night and I THINK the Guiding Light (soap operas). Grandpa Leon liked to watch the fights. When either one of them was watching TV, the dark green shades were pulled down and the room was dim in the middle of the day…except for the glow from the TV screen. I remember Grandpa listening to fights on a big old radio too but I don’t remember if that was before they got a TV or if he just couldn’t get enough of the fights.
Of course there were other shows like Mr. Ed (a horse is a horse of course of course…shake any memories for ya??), Have Gun Will Travel, The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin, Rawhide, Guess My Line, I’ve got a Secret…remember any of THOSE??
Then colored TV was invented and boy we were off to the races! No one could believe their eyes. It was truly amazing and quite the event when the colored TV became affordable so almost everyone had a colored set (still large!)
The first “in color” movie I saw on TV was a western. I don’t remember the name of it, but I couldn’t get over the color of the Indian’s headdress feathers or the bright orange rocks and bluffs in the desert at sunset time. And it gave a whole new meaning to watching Walt Disney on Sunday nights. And then even Mr. Ed was in color as was Ed Sullivan and many others!
For you baby boomers or older, do you remember your first color TV experience?
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