Wednesday, January 30, 2013

TV Nostalgia: A Netflix Wish List

This afternoon I find myself filled with nostalgia. First Buzzfeed posted about the soap opera Passions that so skillfully combined classic soap romance drama with magic and martinis. Then my roommate came home from the market with a bag of limited re-release vintage Jumpin' Jack Doritos. This, and the dreary winter weather, made me think what other great television shows from the past I would like to be resurrected via Netflix. So here is an eclectic list of shows I am fantasizing about re-visiting with a marathon of watching while snacking on my Jumpin' Jack Doritios.

 Small Wonder

The 1980's was all about a perfect, yuppy suburban family who have an unusual member inserted in there resulting in comedic situations-whether it be the big foot on Harry and the Hendersons, the cat eating alien Alf, or my personal favorite, this show, with Vicky, the robot daughter. And of course there was the annoying ginger neighbor who had bangs that define bangs.

Dance Your Ass Off

This Oxygen network under-appreciated gem did it all for reality television. It combined Biggest Loser and Dancing with the Stars perfectly with it's weight loss dance competition that was a weekly spectacular production I liked to call "fatty dance party." Week after week you watched these contestants sausaged into unnecessarily abbreviated sequined costumes shake it doing dance styles like hip hop and contemporary and burlesque. And they did lose weight which was great. I still fantasize about a new season of this show coming back.

Picket Fences

This is another show that had it all way beyond its time: cows giving birth to humans, murder, rape, shoe fetish, gays. Law and Order: SVU but set in a small town with a sense of other-worldly elements and a family at it's center. I also recall it was vaguely religious too, but not in a preachy 7th Heaven way-more in a philosophical way. And, for some reason I found moustached Tom Skerritt-who has sense had a regular role as a jerk judge on Law and Order: SVU-strangely appealing in a poor man's Tom Selleck way. But really I would love to spend time reassessing this bizarre but intriguing show.

Empty Nest

Everytime I am watching Golden Girls and a character from this cross over show makes an appearance I long to watch it-though like many of the shows on this list, they really may be best left as a memory. But this show was about Blanche, Dorothy, and Rose's neighbors, a gruff, widowed pediatrician who had two pathetic single grown daughters living with him was once great. And he had a womanizing neighbor who was a cruise ship captain and a big-haired nurse in his office who had the best southern accent on tv ever and the actress playing her had the best name-Park Overall. I think I named one of my Barbies after her.

Melrose Place

Drama, sex, that pool in the courtyard of the LA apartment complex.....this show was a perfect guilty pleasure and I feel the inspiration for all scandalous reality tv like The Hills and Real Housewives. It by all means should be on Netflix for us to revisit.

Two Guys a Girl and A Pizza Place

The Friday night cheezy version of Friends but arguably more awesome because it had cutie Ryan Reynolds and later in the series Nathan Fillion. How could you lose? The show was set in my hometown Boston and was about these 20 somethings who worked and hung out in a pizza shop. Oh the 90's-when working at a coffee shop or pizza place seemed a good goal and was glamorized on tv. Carrie Bradshaw your Minola wearing and martini sipping ruined it all-people felt they had to have jobs and money. But this show was classic carefree 90's. Seriously, Nathan Fillion played a jukebox repairman. And it made you want to just kick back with a beer and pizza. Gluten free was a thing of the distant, dark future.

And finally on the list of why the hell isn't it on Netflix:


A classic afternoon cartoon. It was smart and well written with its incredible pop culture, literary, and political references. Also coined great catch phrases ("Helloooo nurse" "Same thing we do every night-try to take over the world.") and memorable characters like Chicken Boo-a chicken who thought he was people and Katie Kaboom-my personal favorite of a volatile PMS-ing teenage girl. Oh and Bernadette Peters voiced an adorbale bitchy street cat.

*Also must confess I've eaten myself sick on those Doritos while googling and longingly watching youtube videos of these shows.

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