Happy Days (1970– )

TV Series  |   |  Comedy, History, Music
7.2
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This summer replacement comedy/variety show, not to be confused with the long-running sitcom, was a simultaneous parody of/homage to the 1930's. In addition to its regular cast of comedians... See full summary »

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Title: Happy Days (1970– )

Happy Days (1970– ) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Episodes

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1  
1976   1970  
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Cast

Series cast summary:
Jack Burns ...
 Himself / ... (3 episodes, 1970)
Fred Allen ...
 Himself (3 episodes, 1970-1976)
Louis Nye ...
 Himself - Host (2 episodes, 1970)
...
 Himself (2 episodes, 1970)
Bob Elliott ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 1970)
Ray Goulding ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 1970)
...
 Harry James (2 episodes, 1970)
Helen Forrest ...
 Helen Forrest / ... (2 episodes, 1970)
Buddy Rich ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 1970)
Helen O'Connell ...
 Herself (2 episodes, 1970)
Ray Eberle ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 1970)
...
 Himself (2 episodes, 1970-1976)
Helen Kane ...
 Betty Boop (2 episodes, 1970-1976)
(2 episodes, 1970)
...
 Himself (2 episodes, 1970)
...
 Himself (archive footage) (2 episodes, 1970)
Laara Lacey ...
 Herself / ... (2 episodes, 1970)
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Storyline

This summer replacement comedy/variety show, not to be confused with the long-running sitcom, was a simultaneous parody of/homage to the 1930's. In addition to its regular cast of comedians, each week's program featured appearances by one of the top big bands of the era (Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington, and Buddy Rich all appeared on the program). Written by Bob Sorrentino

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

band | 1930s | musician | See All (3) »

Genres:

Comedy | History | Music

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Release Date:

25 June 1970 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

A small oasis of nostalgia in a time far more hospitable to nostalgia
3 January 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

1970 was a watershed year in my life, the year that ushered in many life-long obsessions. That summer, AM radio stations coast to coast ran historic programming and specials honoring what was being called the fiftieth anniversary of broadcasting. Most documentaries and nostalgia shows started their run with noisy clips of the KDKA coverage of the 1920 presidential election. It was about this time that Old Time Radio record albums began appearing on store shelves. I bought my first OTR record from a very old style (complete with lunch counter) S.S. Kresges downtown about that year, and shortly followed with the great Themes Like Old Times radio theme compilation (actually, the first minute or so of a whopping 90 radio programs from the '30s and '40s). The nostalgia craze, centering on the Depression years and WW2 (happy times, those - !?) was in full throttle. (I remember quite a number of "nostalgia" books popping up everywhere at the time, books such as Richard J. Anobile's frame by frame reconstructions of classic film comedies of the Marx Brothers and Laurel and Hardy, packaged to echo the bygone Deco era graphically.) It wasn't long before the focus of the commercial nostalgia industry shifted from this earlier period to the mid to late 1950s represented by that other Happy Days. But briefly, for one twinkling instant, it seems now, the commercial nostalgia industry threw all it's resources behind this always-interesting era, before closing the book on it forever and leaving devotees of the period to rummage in flea markets and public libraries to satisfy our inborn archivist's/throwback's avocation.

Happy Days came at just the right time to act as an enhancement to this nostalgia craze, and I eagerly ate it up. Certain things from this show pop into my head to this day, 40 years after the fact: Skermahorn and Ballou (Bob and Ray); Curly McDimple; Voodini, the bumbling magician (Chuck McCann). There was a fair amount of throwaway material here, a lot of soft padding in the Hee Haw type format. But seeing an historic and cultural period acknowledged in the context of a culture that ruthlessly discards the past -- that always hard-sells the trend of the second and determinedly promotes itself as "modern" --was thrilling. No other way to describe it.

Always a completist and documentarian, I seem to have been cursed even as a child with a wistful sense that life is a passing parade. Somewhere, I have cassette recordings of the audio of bits of this show, made against that day when no other trace of it would exist.


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