Monday, March 23, 2009

Reminiscin' This 'n That...Part Three

Well, it looks like I'm still in my dwelling on the past phase. At least it's not in a negative way. I mean, it could be all about how horrible growing up was when we only had three channels on tv and lived in the middle of nowhere and had nothing to do all day long. Of course, that would be a complete lie. Except the three channels part. And the living in the middle of nowhere part. I actually had a great childhood. We had tons to do, and had to be a lot more creative, since we didn't have videogames (which could perhaps be why I'm so obsessed with them now?) or a lot of television to watch. So we built forts. Tree forts, snow forts, ground forts, you name it, we did it. And as kids we made the coolest forts (according to us, of course).

But that's not the point of this post. I got to thinking about my childhood due to the last two posts I have. One thing that really sticks out in my mind are the television shows we used to watch. Now, you'd think that since we had only three channels we wouldn't have watched many shows at all. Apparently that's not the case at all.

I've compiled a list of some of my favourite childhood shows. I hope I don't leave any crucial shows out, but that's bound to happen. Let me know if you remember any of these gems!

Dear Aunt Agnes
"Dear Aunt Agnes, remember, you said you'd help me out if you could..."
Good old TVO programming. This show was completely Canadian. To my surprise and delight, I actually found a part of an old episode on youtube. If you didn't grow up in Ontario, chances are you missed out on this classic. Basically, it was about a forgetful old woman who takes care of her niece's children while she's away on business for a while. I tried to find a picture of the cast or even the opening credits, but I came up with nothing. Still, look it up on youtube - you might just remember this one!

Join In!
"Join In! Cast your cares away...Join In! Fun is comin' your way! ...Join in! It's a brand new day! Join in! So get ready to play..."
Another TVO classic. This one was filmed (in part) in Lindsay, Ontario, which was fairly close to where I grew up and the town in which some of my relatives lived. So that in itself was kind of neat in my eyes. This show had three main characters - Zak, Jacob and Nikki (who was later replaced by Kia) who all shared an Art studio. There were these wooden dolls that lived in the window sill that came to life (I guess they were magic?) and a juice train. Trust me, you'll remember the juice train if you remember anything about this show. Again, I couldn't find a picture of this one to post.

Dog City
This was a Saturday morning cartoon favourite in the Morrissey household. It started off with a puppet dog named Eliot (who happened to be a cartoonist), and went into the adventures of Ace, the cartoon dog who was created by Eliot. Ace was a detective, see, and he solved crimes and mysteries. Good times.

Another Saturday morning favourite. This is not to be confused with the COPS showing "real" police officers arresting rednecks and featuring Inner Circle's reggae classic "Bad Boys." This was C.O.P.S. (or Central Organization of Police Specialists). This was a cartoon about futuristic cops (i.e. Bulletproof, LongArm and Taser) "fighting crime in future time" against "Big Boss" and his gang of crooks. Pretty sweet chase scenes in this one.

Sesame Street
Who doesn't remember Sesame Street? Although, I believe in Canada it is now called "Sesame Park" due to the fact that they don't want kids to be encouraged to play in the streets. I'm not sure if that's actually why they changed the name of it, but it seemed reasonable enough. Anyways, the original Sesame Street was much cooler than some lame park anyways. Remember Mr. Hooper and Linda? And Bert and Ernie before they were gay? Or Big Bird and Oscar the grouch? So many excellent characters. I loved the aliens that would say "yep, yep, yep, yep...etc."

The Raccoons
Ah, The Raccoons. I loved this cartoon. Although, I still don't know what that pink guy, Cedric, was supposed to be with his odd nose. An anteater?

Polka Dot Door
Before Polka Dot Shorts, there was Polka Dot Door. With story time mouse and the trunk full of stuffed animals, such as Marigold, Humpty, Dumpty, and Bear! Oh, and the odd time Minou, the French Canadian cat who would make an appearance whenever he felt like it. Typical French Canadian Cat*. Only showing up when it's convenient for him. Of course, there was also the Polkaroo. Odd that he would only show himself when one of the hosts was missing...I smell conspiracy!
*Disclaimer: I have nothing against French Canadians or cats. But put the two together, however, that's where I have a slight problem...

The Smoggies
Ah, the blantant propoganda this tv show shoved down our throats as children! "Recycle! Reduce! Reuse! Be a sun tot! They're earth friendly and do only good! Don't be a smoggie - they're filthy and mean and bad!" What's weird is that this show isn't on these days instead. Now that everyone's going green, you'd think they'd be pushing this show on kids these days. Oh, and I do believe it had a good message - I just like making fun of it.

Today's Special
One of my favourite shows ever! I had a huge crush on Jeff the mannequin. He was dreamy! And I still remember the magic words that would allow him to become human - "Hocus Pocus Alamagocus!" Sweet. Can't forget Sam Krenshaw and his trusty computer TXL. Or Jodie, the pink jumpsuit wearing display creator. Or Muffy, the neurotic rhyming mouse!

Pinky and the Brain
I actually bought it on dvd when it came out. I loved it that much as a kid. So many hilarious quotes from this show.
A personal favourite:
"Pinky! Are you pondering what I'm pondering?"
"Well, I think so Brain, but if the plural of mouse is mice, then shouldn't the plural of spouse be spice?"

Mr. Dressup
I am seriously considering naming my first born son Finnegan. Not even joking. I'm in the process of convincing Greg. Either way, old school Mr. Dressup (with Casey and Finnegan) was awesome. Before Truffles and Chester though. Then it just got silly.

Kids Can Rock and Roll
"K-I-D-E-O...We are KIDEO"
Ok, this show was hilarious. Not that it tried to be. It was almost a parady of KISS. And it really made you see KISS in a much more ridiculous way. Not that I was ever really into KISS (I really don't want to rock and roll all night; nor do I want to party ev-er-y day). But it just made me laugh anyways. Especially the Aerobic Rock, where they played a sweet air band to try to get kids to exercise. Thank God they have Guitar Hero now instead of this lame crap! Wait, Guitar Hero is just as lame! Who am I kidding? I love both equally. But seriously, Buddy Goodfellow, Ace Manners and P.J. Styles, could really rock. I kid(eo) you not, those were their names.

Harriet's Magic Hats
"Harriet's Magic Hats have a happy way of getting us off the ground! Harriet's Magic Hats have a happy way of flying us all around!"
TVOntario classic. It was a tv show about a trunk full of magic hats that would take you to a site to which the hat could be used. For example, if you put on a hard hat, you'd be magically wisked away to a construction site! Exciting! I hated that stupid parrot though.

The Elephant Show
"One elephant went out to play upon a spiderweb one day..."
I still love this show. I wish it was still on. Sharon, Lois and Bram really knew how to rock the party. Oh, and often special guest Eric Nagler was pretty awesome too.

Danger Bay
So, this wasn't entirely a kid's show, but I watched (along with Baywatch) anyways. It was 80's television at it's finest!

Breaker High
"Na Na Na Na Na Hey Hey! Carry Me Away!"
I was so jealous that they got to go to highschool on a cruise ship. How cool would that be? Plus Jimmy was hilarious and Max was hot. And this is where the somehow famous Ryan Gosseling got his start!

Care Bears
"Do the Care Bear Count down...five, four, three, two, one!"
Beastly and Shrieky were Noheart's minions, and were constantly causing slightly annoying disturbances making people of the world unhappy! Who could stop this madness?! Only the CARE BEARS!!! Oh, and Champ Bear was a braggert, in my opinion.

Circle Square
"Let it shine shine shine! Come on and let your light shine!"
I highly doubt many people remember this one. I couldn't find another picture of it other than this one, unfortantely. It was actually a Christian show with puppets and kids on a ranch. I'm sure you see the appeal of it now. Some stellar acting too.

City Guys
"C I T Y you can see why these guys, the neat guys, smart and streetwise"
Oh yeah, that's how the theme song started. Very classy. This was a Saved By The Bell-style "comedy." Awesome.

A cartoon based on the movie! I loved it. Ghostbusters did this as well. Both were definite favourites.

Astro Boy
"Soaring high in the skies, he may be small but only in size! Astro Boy Astro Boy! He is brave and gentle and wise!"
I'm pretty sure the first episode had a weird guy shoving Astro Boy into a suitcase. Kind of creepy.

Art Attack
"This is an art attack! THIS is an art attack! THIS IS Art Attack!"
Neil Buchanan (who, by the way, is not dead, despite popular belief!) could do some pretty awesome art. I always loved his Big Art Attacks. He made it look so easy! You know, for the amount of episodes I watched of this show, I never once tried to make any of the crafts. I don't know if it was laziness or something else. Probably laziness.

"It's time for Animaniacs! And we're zany to the max! So just sit back and relax, you'll laugh 'til you collapse, we're Animaniacs!"
So many hilarious parts of this show. It was like a child with ADD had written and produced it. It was brilliant! Of course, this is where Pinky and the Brain got their start. And who could forget Chicken Boo (completely ridiculous). And the Pigeon Godfather. Perfection.

Size Small
So obscure. Almost NO ONE remembers this show. But perhaps the picture of "Friend Record" will jog your memory. That's pretty much the only thing I remember of this show. A giant record hitting two wooden spoons together. I dare you to try to ask people if they remember this show based on that discription. You'll get quite the looks, I'll tell you that much. It took me forever to find the title of this show. I'm glad I can stop badgering people to remember it by asking about a giant record with legs and wooden spoons. I think I was about 2 seconds from a straight they even use those anymore?

So, there are several shows I have failed to include on this list. Mainly because it seems that this list could go on FOREVER. But in the future I may continue this list. And here are some of the shows I could possibly include (for your enjoyment and as a reminder to myself):
Bookmice, Saved By the Bell, Clueless, Hang Time, Popples, Lady Lovely Locks, My Little Pony, Jem, Téléfrançais, The Adventures of Tin Tin, Rocket Robin Hood, The Muppets, Fraggle Rock, Road to Avonlea, Alf, Student Bodies, Ready or Not, Boy Meets World, Bobby's World, Degrassi High, Duck Tales, Dennis the Menace, Eek! The Cat, Eerie Indian, Goosebumps, Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Eric's World, Eureeka's Castle, Dudley the Dragon, Darkwing Duck, Chip and Dale, Tom and Jerry, Looney Tunes, Tiny Toons, Freakazoid, Police Academy, My Pet Monster, Popples, Sister Sister, Ghost Writer, Under the Umbrella Tree, The Wonder Years....
Ok, that list is just going to get longer...
Until next time, Keep Fit and Have Fun!
(Anyone remember "Body Break" with Hal Johnston and Joanne McLeod?)


  1. Remember it, its still around! Those old farts from Body Break are still making episodes. I can't remember where I saw them.

    I do remember that walking record vaguely. Clearly not a quality show.

    And I forgot all about KIDEO! That was such a dumb show, but I watched it all the time. Thanks for using your insane memory to revive these classics Mol, it was fun to read!

  2. UPDATE: Joanne and Hal can still be found on the DRIVE-IN channel, I saw them last night.

  3. Yeah, but he totally got rid of the kick ass moustache, didn't he. Disappointing!

  4. i don't know all of them, but the ones i do remember, i miss them...good times, good memories thanks for this =]

  5. Glad you enjoyed them :) Thanks for reading!!

  6. Cedric and Cyril (and Sophia) were supposed to be aardvarks, specifically, so your guess at ant-eaters wasn't far-off. On the other hand, I haven't the foggiest idea of what Truffles was supposed to be (sentient, anthropomorphic candy?)

    I do remember watching just about every program you've mentioned here, though (even Size Small and Circle Square, dimly, though I'm not really familiar with any of the live-action teen-dramas).

    Happy New Year.

  7. Ah, aardvarks! That makes sense!
    Truffles was weird looking, wasn't she?

    Thanks for reading - nice to see someone else who remembers all the great shows of the 80's and 90's!