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The popular radio show comes to life in this hit sitcom about a wise family man, Jim Anderson, his common-sense wife Margaret and their children Betty, Bud and Kathy. Whenever the kids need advice on anything at all, they can always turn to their father, because father knows best. Written by
Dylan Self <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When the sitcom first aired in 1949 on NBC radio at 8:30 p.m. on Thursdays, it was sponsored by Maxwell House. When the series moved from NBC radio to CBS television in October 1954, Robert Young was the only member of the radio cast to make the transition to the TV sitcom adaptation. See more »
The town was Springfield but we were never told the state. I always pictured the setting to be a very long way from either coast. Maybe Ohio, Indiana or Iowa. Wherever it was, it was far away from any of the country's real problems of the time.
There were no civil rights issues, no murders and no rapes in Springfield. Everyone was white, which was the norm for television of this era. Springfield was a make-believe fantasy by today's standards, but back then, it was the majority of real America.
With that said, I watched the show every week and wished I was a member of the Anderson family. Having belonged to a somewhat volatile family, I had the 30-minute escape every week to be a part of a caring, loving clan.
The kids had the normal 1950s problems of a white, middle-class family. Robert Young as the patriarch, Jim Anderson, showed an understanding that was not only appreciated by the rest of the family, but by the viewers, too. He was right up there with Andy Taylor and Ward Cleaver as the fathers America loved at the time.
Corny? To some it might be, but to many others, including myself, it was the family we wanted but never had.
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