A note from the publisher.
I started TV Classics Press because the popular shows when I was a child during the 1960s bring me back to the fond memories of yesteryear. As a writer, I am in touch with how description can evoke feelings. Certain sounds, smells, and tastes are like time machines. For me, and I imagine many of my baby boomer peers, the television shows have the same effect as the smell of Crayolas or play-doh.
When we were children, there were three networks. There were a few affiliates where I lived on Long Island, so we also had some local shows. For the most part, children shared the same experiences at the same time. The shows became the backdrop to our lives.
It has always fascinated me how much the television shows were also time capsules of what was happening in the world, such as fashion and expressions. In retrospect, I find it even more interesting was how the shows were idealized versions of how we wished the world could be. It was so much better to escape to the silliness of Gilligan’s Island or think about how great it would be to twitch your nose and have a clean house. The family shows like Donna Reed and Leave it to Beaver gave us a sense of warmth and certainty that we did not see in our homes. Life was simpler in many ways, but the latter years of the 60s were turbulent and confusing.
Before cable and retro television syndication, many of the shows were fleeting memories. When you are very young, you only have impressions of things. It was exciting when I could watch shows like Lost in Space, one of our first book titles, and remember how it was when it first premiered. Indeed I remember watching the first episode in 1965 when I was seven. Those earlier shows didn’t use computerized special effects. They were campy and fun.
The real reason I started TV Classics Press was that I had back surgery. This surgery wasn’t the laparoscopic kind. My back surgery was full with three surgeons, a titanium lego looking thing, and a clamshell back brace that I had to wear for six months. A friend of mine knew I was too hyper to stay in bed and follow the doctor’s orders, so he gave me an assignment. He challenged me to watch nothing but sixties television to lull me into a restful mindset.
It worked. I chose to watch all eight seasons of The Andy Griffith Show. Then as I took my tentative steps in rehab, I noticed something extraordinary. I now had a Mayberry state of mind. The world was good, and I felt happy and calm. It was an epiphany that my guilty pleasure had medicinal value. Dr. Bernie Siegel discovered the benefits of laughter in healing, and I found the healing power of Classic television.
I wound up visiting North Carolina during Mayberry Days with some dear friends, but that is a story best left to another post.
Today I stand by my identity as a TV Classics Nostalgia nerd because I believe it is a recipe for a happy life. I hope you will continue to join me on many happy trips down Memory Lane.