2/07/2008

Excuse Me Ma'am, Your Inner Geek is Showing

After finishing Janet Stickmon's Crushing Soft Rubies and Pati Navalta Poblete's The Oracles, I've been thinking about the shows I used to watch as a kid and how that might have affected the way I look at things now.

Pati opens her book mentioning how she wanted to be the missing Brady daughter, while Janet reminisces about Bill Cosby routines helping her laugh during her deepest tragic moments.

This morning I found myself hearing the tune from The Banana Splits in my head...



Trying to explain to my children the concept of the Banana Splits (and finally ending an argument with my husband over whether the characters were monkeys or dogs - yep, both right, both wrong), I found myself surfing YouTube for Sid and Marty Kroft bits - The Bugaloos, HR Pufnstuff, Land of the Lost, Dr. Shrinker, Wonderbug, Electra Woman and Dyna Girl.

I stumbled on the intros for Arc II and Space Academy, reminisced about Space:1999 and Jason of Star Command, and realized that I was into dystopian storytelling waaaay before I could tell a dysta from a utopa.

By far the jewels, though, were finding that the complete series of ISIS can now be found on DVD:



As well as several seasons of Star Blazers:



What struck me most, though, was the diversity of casting. Yes, all the mains were white folk, but their sidekicks were people of color, of different age and of stature, which is more than I can say, unfortunately for my later favs Star Wars, Buffy, and Firefly. Yah, I wanted to be Andrea Thomas and find the necklace of ISIS to be powerful, but Renee Carrol and Cindy Lee were there too, being confidantes and friends, so at least I saw them as important enough to be portrayed.

I used to think that the housekeeper from Courtship of Eddie's Father was the only Asian I saw on TV as a kid, but now I know differently. I'll be looking through these old vids more as I put together my essays, seeing what else comes up. Viva La YouTube!

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