“Jump the shark” Post, Part One
The following is my list of the moments at which TV shows began that slide to sucksville. The opinions are entirely my own of course.
The Beverly Hillbillies
This show is an example of TV thinking during the sixties. Basically a bunch of “city slickers” decide to make fun of country people by portraying them has stupid and ignorant. An example of urban contempt for country life. The show started in the toilet and went down from there. When the show went off the air Time magazine said it was “the best indication of an improvement in network taste”. Defining moment when Granny thought that Elle-Mae was marrying a real “frog” and would have little “tadpoles”.
Cast of The BeverlyHillbillies
Diana leaving. Afterwards it became obvious what a bunch of worthless, contemptible losers the regulars were. The sort of people you would see bleeding to death on the road and leave to die without a moment’s hesitation. The Diana character was irritating and annoying but not contemptible; when she left the total uselessness of the other regulars became all too apparent. Cheers started the trend on American sitcoms of having vile, worthless regulars the viewer could feel superior too and contemptuous of.
The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis
The adventures of the superficial, worthless Dobie where both funny and very cynical for its time. Dobie’s parents who have no use for their son (who would), were priceless. This show was way ahead of its time. It went downhill the day it was canceled and no new shows could be made.
Scene from The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis
The Adams Family. (sixties version)
An Hollywood abortion. Adams, who created the cartoons which Hollywood mutilated and abused, apparently hated the show. The vicious, sly humour of the cartoons is emasculated and made harmless and wholesome. A total travesty. Another one that started in the tank and stayed there. The episode with the Adams refusing to spank their children is a defining moment for a family that poisons, tortures, and blowups each other.
Cast of Roseanne