I feel like I’m constantly talking about Nick-at-Nite and how important it was to me as a kid. Seriously, it was a crucial part of my adolescence. I got a TV in my room when I was about 10 years old and it was a big deal. Nick-At-Nite was my favorite. I don’t have a TV in my room anymore so I have to watch everything on my computer. It’s sad because it means that I haven’t been able to keep up with what’s happening on Nickelodeon between 8pm and midnight.
When I went home a couple weeks ago to visit my family, I was so shocked when I, a 21-year-old college student, started watching Nick-At-Nite with my 10-year-old sister. It was devastating. I started thinking about what the real difference was between my version of Nick-At-Nite and my sister’s. Could we just compare then vs now for a second?
The Cosby Show
I love the Cosby Show. I think that Bill as Cliff Huxtable could be my favorite TV dad of all time. He was strict but not overbearing and just seemed like a really cool dad to have. His relationship with Rudy (and later Olivia, basically the youngest girl on the show) was my favorite part of any episode. He was always so nice to them and treated them like real people. I always felt like Dr.Huxtable understood me!
The Brady Bunch
The Brady Bunch was a show that I really loved when I was young. And I think my parents loved that I watched such a wholesome show. It was cool too, because as I got older there was always another kid that age to identify with. I went from relating to Cindy to relating to Jan, then right on to Marsha. It was great! I could literally watch it at all stages of my adolescence and really get a lot out of it.
Okay, I’m from San Francisco so I might be a little biased but I was the biggest Full House fan. I think that of all the shows, these girls had some of the best lines ever. They were all sassy and confidant and dealt with such real issues. Remember when Stephanie made friends with the “cool” girls and they tried to make her smoke at school? She didn’t, though, and instead made them realize they didn’t need to be bad to be cool. I mean, come on! Stephanie Tanner made good girls everywhere look awesome!
My sister watches:
The Nanny is a show that I really enjoy right now. I just get Fran – I think she is hilarious. I literally don’t know any of the names of the kids on the show, though. They were always just a little bit older than me when I was watching Nick-At-Nite. I think that I like it so much now because the kids were in their late teens and then early twenties and would go to Nanny Fine with problems which now, I really want to hear about. When I was 10, I didn’t get it. Obviously, I still always watched The Nanny when it was on because I love singing along to the theme song so much. “She was working in a bridal shop in Flushing, Queens, ‘Til her boyfriend kicked her out in one of those crushing scenes… What was she to do? Where was she to go? She was out on her fanny…” (Even sung that as I typed it.)
My Wife And Kids
I’ve never watched this show. I try to get into it now when I see it on but can’t really manage. I watch way to much TV, so it’s probably better that way. Again, I don’t know what the children’s names are and they’re teenagers so I think the little kid element is lost there.
The George Lopez Show
Love George Lopez. Love this show. George Lopez himself is so funny but I don’t think that any of the really funny parts of the show are about the kids, George gets to have most of the best lines which, as a kid, I was upset about. I wanted the people my age to be funny too.
That ’70s Show
This is such a good show, it’s just not the most kid-friendly. I don’t think my sister realizes that it’s not that appropriate. However, most of the “stuff” they do is pretty low-key and not super obvious, which I think my parents appreciate.
Here is what I realized: there is a serious lack of child stars on TV. I know there are kids in most of these shows but there aren’t any real kid stars on any of the shows. I’m talking about some Olivia on the Cosby Show action (um, by the way, Olivia is Raven Symoné circa 1990 , if you didn’t already know) or some Cindy Brady, or even some Michelle Tanner (obviously, the Olsen Twins) child stardom! These little girls were hilarious and so important to the shows, I swear. They were the heart and soul and that is what I feel is really missing from this modern day line-up. Who would I relate to on That ’70s Show if I were 10? I watch them now and love them and my sister enjoys them. But even she doesn’t know some of the kids’ names on these shows. You’d better believe I knew all the Huxtables, all the Bradys, and all of the Tanners when I was younger (and that’s, like, 14 names).
Nick-at-Nite, bring back the child star, please!