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Designed to give a one minute history lesson during the Bicentennial year in the US, these little programs aired on CBS(If memory serves me) and corresponded to events happening on that particular date in 1776. If you saw one, say on April 4th, then the show would deal with what had happened on April 4th 1776. Some episodes might have a famous host, and some had just voice-overs, describing the events.
In 1976, I was a thirteen year old kid with a keen interest in history,
and I tuned into CBS at 7pm whenever I could to catch the "Bicentennial
Minute." They were mostly narrated by Roger Mudd, if memory serves me
right. I loved it!
Now, to be a bit facetious: They couldn't do these today, simply because our unfortunate obsession with "Political Correctness" would require a diverse, multi-ethnic, gender-neutral, all-inclusive presentation which would last about two hours, so that every facet of early American humanity gets a nod.
On the "Bicentennial Minute;" All those old white men just got too much credit for founding our Nation.
Whoever came up with the idea for this program...my hat's off. I wonder if this program has been saved for DVD for re-airing in the year 2076?? I probably won't be around by then, but it's a neat way to learn without getting bored with our nations history.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
It's really hard to spoil these, because the basic concept is easy to
describe without spoiling much and it's been roughly 40 years, but
here's a spoiler warning anyway:
This fascinating series aired on the CBS network from July 4, 1974 through December 31, 1976, an extension of the original series, which was slated to end on July 4, 1976. The concept was simple:
Each segment had a different narrator, movie stars, television stars, politicians, public figures and so on and each segment ran a minute. They detailed some event or person connected to the date in question 200 years before. The network initially was reluctant to do this, but was convinced and the nightly segment became quite popular. The subject of a minute was often something that had some connection to the narrator (i.e., a musician might discuss some musical event, politicians some political figure or event and so on).
It was a fascinating quick little history lesson and I managed to catch the vast majority of them. I wish I could see them again, but that's sadly a very unlikely prospect, as a commercial release would be too difficult to pull of at this point and would be commercially limited. Still a fascinating project and most highly recommended.
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