The Pee Wee Herman Show is kicking off with a huge, sold-out stage show, a new version of the original stage show that served as a launching pad for the Saturday morning TV (AHHHHHH!) show, Pee Wee's Playhouse. The show starts a run on Jan. 17, 2010 at Los Angeles' Club Nokia. The producers had to move the show to a bigger club so they could accommodate the large number of ticket holders who stormed the box office when seats went on sale.
Given the buzz and heavy interest in this new stage show and the character's return from the depths of popular culture, could a TV (AHHHHHHH!) version -- either for kids or adults -- be far behind?
It kind of makes sense. Unlike my own youth, children don't look to Saturday morning as the sole source of kid's fare. They only need to turn on Cartoon Network or Nickelodeon or one of the plethora of Disney channels. Those channels are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
For those interested in a historical look at the old Saturday morning cartoons, I recommend fellow Squadder Rich's articles on the subject.
There are already 24 hour infomercial channels (Home Shopping Network to name one), so Fox already has competition in that regard. However, Fox is a network and not just a cable station. It's an interesting experiment on the part of Fox and I'm curious if it will work out. Without the interest of kids, what will run on the networks on Saturday mornings?
Road Runner, that Coyote's after you. Road Runner, if he catches you your through. -- Theme to The Road Runner Show, which premiered in the fall of 1966.
Showtime! After years of playing around on Saturday mornings to find the right mixture to bring in the young viewers, the networks took the bull by the horns in the fall of 1966 and ushered in the Golden Age of Saturday morning cartoons. No less than 11 new cartoon series appeared during the 1966-67 season. Many of them were action and superhero-oriented thanks to the popularity of ABC's live-action Batman series.
The 1966 season also began the domination of Saturday mornings by two animation studios -- Hanna-Barbera and Filmation. For Hanna-Barbera this would be the second year of original Saturday morning programming. For Filmation this would be the first of many years producing fairly entertaining and slightly better animated fare that featured more action and adventure and less in the way of talking animals.
So, if you have your bowl of Cocoa Puffs in front of you, let's see what you were watching back in 1966.
All that ran through my head when I heard about the death of CBS News veteran Christopher Glenn, who passed away suddenly in a Norwalk, CT hospital, apparently of liver cancer. Glenn narrated In The News, a series of news and information shorts geared towards kids,that ran from 1971-1986 between shows in CBS's Saturday morning lineup. Anyone over the age of 35 will forever recognize his gravelly baritone on the spot because of it. Glenn had just retired in February after working for CBS News on TV and radio for 35 years. I hope he was able to enjoy his brief retirement; he deserved that much for all the good work he put in over the years.
Okay, now that we've covered the best bands on television, it's time to put our focus on those bands that, while maybe not "real," still had us tapping our feet, shaking our hips, and waving our hands in the air, almost, dare I say, as if we didn't care. Below are five that spring to mind, but I'm sure you guys can come up with a ton of others. Let's strike up the band, shall we?
Dr. Teeth and the The Electric Mayhem: Okay, let me see if I got this right. Floyd Pepper was the bass player, Janice was the guitarist, Zoot played saxophone, Animal played drums, and Dr. Teeth sang and played piano. I think that was the lineup of this insane band that "played" the opening and closing music on The Muppet Show, not to mention all their great performances during the show. I wonder how many current drummers got into it because of Animal? I'll bet quite a few.
More changes are underway on Saturday mornings. CBS is developing a three-hour kids' entertainment block called CBS Secret Saturday Morning Slumber Party, which debuts this fall.
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