Widower Steve Douglas raises three sons with the help of his father-in-law, and is later aided by the boys' great-uncle. An adopted son, a stepdaughter, wives, and another generation of sons join the loving family in later seasons.
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... See full summary »
Another popular 1950's sitcom about a close family. The Stones consist of loving homemaker Donna, her pediatrician husband Alex, and their children Mary and Jeff. Many situations arise like... See full summary »
Mickey Mouse is the host of this variety show with a club attended by a variety of kids being the Mouseketeers. The usual content includes in-studio comedy and musical acts by those kids, classic as well as original cartoons and dramatic serials like "Spin and Marty" and "The Hardy Boys." Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
In the animated inserts, Walt Disney provided the voice of Mickey Mouse for the very last time. He retired from voicing the character during the production of Fun & Fancy Free (1947) because he simply could not do the required falsetto anymore, and let sound effects man James MacDonald take over. See more »
As I said to Pinocchio, "Pinoc, there are two ways to do anything - the right way and the wrong way. If you wanna be right, do things the right way, because if you do things the wrong way, that's the foolish way, and only fools do things the foolish way, which is the wrong way. Right?" Anyway, let me see? Where was I?
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Despite the Worship of a Fictional Mouse, One of the Best Children's Programs of All Time
To create a show or movie with an animal character, such as Lassie, Benji, Charlotte or the Black Stallion is reasonable enough, especially for children. A show based on the worship of an animal character, in this case a mouse, seems a little ridiculous. Yet the whole Mickey Mouse Club idea has to be very American. Entertainment industries have constantly capitalized on icons produced for movies and television and exploited them to the hilt for profit. The studio corporations know that when Americans fall in love with characters and worlds from the movies and television, part of the spectator public wants to connect with it on a deeper level. The Mickey Mouse Club allowed younger viewers enthralled with the Disney universe to experience their favorite mouse on television once a week instead of only when mom and dad would take them to the cinema.
Simultaneously, all things considered, The Mickey Mouse Club was a good children's show with merit. The original show incorporated games, educational segments, sing-a-longs, and even some dramatic episodes. It seems to me I remember the Hardy Boys, but I am not sure. In short, the Mickey Mouse Club encouraged children to be children. And hey, the young Annette Funicello was worth the price of admission. She will probably be best remembered for this show rather than her silly beach movies 10 years later.
Today most children's programming via the networks is about pure entertainment, barring PBS, and a lot of it seems grossly inappropriate for underage viewers who are not yet pre-adolescents. Propagating that 8-to-10-year-olds should have boyfriends and girlfriends, i.e. behave like adults or even adolescents, is I think harmful misinformation. Children are still learning what is appropriate and inappropriate except for what they see modeled in front of them, which is often on television. If the Mickey Mouse Club had a clear message, it was that childhood should be enjoyed for what it is, and there is a magical wonder about childhood that should not be missed.
Still, it raises my eyebrow that the show's participants would not only sing hymns to a fictional mouse but don mouse-inspired attire. Even as a kid, I thought the mouse ears were ridiculous, especially on the adults! But given the low-quality of material being presented to children today, maybe the mouse ears are a small price to pay. Afterall, donning the mouse ears represents "make believe", the essence of childhood.
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