Situation comedies have come and gone since the dawn of TV, and seeing some of them revived on TV Land got me wondering which were the dopiest ones ever made. The candidates are many, but the following fiveÃ¢â‚¬â€all hatched in the 1960sÃ¢â‚¬â€spring to mind first. And, yes, a degree of a suspension of belief is involved in watching any TV series, but these really asked for that extra mile. Some TV shows you just have to Ã¢â‚¬Å“go with;Ã¢â‚¬? these were some of them. And P.S.: IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m not implying they werenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t entertaining and worthy; in fact, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve probably seen most eps of each of them.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“GilliganÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s IslandÃ¢â‚¬? (Ã¢â‚¬â„¢64Ã¢â‚¬â€œÃ¢â‚¬â„¢67): Ã¢â‚¬Å“LostÃ¢â‚¬? this ainÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t. The seven stranded castaways included three whose presence on the humble S.S. Minnow was baffling: zillionaires Thurston and Lovey Howell, who probably owned a fleet of yachts, and movie star Ginger Grant, who must have been in a mood that day to Ã¢â‚¬Å“slum it.Ã¢â‚¬? Meanwhile, the Howells brought along huge stashes of jewels, money and outfits for every occasion, and Ginger never ran out of gowns and makeup. The Professor was a bright guy, but concocting a radio transmitter out of coconuts and vines? On the other hand, is there a baby boomer out there who canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t recite all the words to showÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s opening theme?
Ã¢â‚¬Å“F TroopÃ¢â‚¬? (Ã¢â‚¬â„¢65Ã¢â‚¬â€œÃ¢â‚¬â„¢67): Fort CourageÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s soldiers in the post-Civil War days including clueless Capt. Parmenter, his scheming underlings Sgt. OÃ¢â‚¬â„¢Rourke and Cpl. Agarn, and naive enlisted men Dobbs and Duffy. Meanwhile, the Native Americans werenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t much brighter and were played by Caucasians. Not so bad: Ã¢â‚¬Å“F TroopÃ¢â‚¬â„¢sÃ¢â‚¬? female lead, Wrangler Jane, was feisty but not butch.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Green AcresÃ¢â‚¬? (Ã¢â‚¬â„¢65Ã¢â‚¬â€œÃ¢â‚¬â„¢71): A successful Manhattan lawyer and his dim-bulb socialite wife move to a farm on the outskirts of the godforsaken town Hooterville. They live on a farm in a ramshackle house and were forced to climb a pole to make phone calls. The cast of supporting characters were hard-core hicks (but dadburn funny): huckster Mr. Haney, bumbling Mr. Kimball, farmhand Eb (no Rhodes Scholar he) and neighbors Fred and Doris Ziffel, who had a pig they considered their son.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“My Mother the CarÃ¢â‚¬? (Ã¢â‚¬â„¢65Ã¢â‚¬â€œÃ¢â‚¬â„¢66): Considered to be theÃ¢â‚¬â€pardon the expressionÃ¢â‚¬â€mother of asinine comedies, a small-town lawyer buys a classic car, a 1928 Porter, that turns out to be the reincarnation of his mother, who talks to himÃ¢â‚¬â€and only himÃ¢â‚¬â€via the radio. (Meanwhile, did cars in the 1920s even have radios?) The series villain was the shifty Capt. Mancini, an antique-car collector constantly scheming to acquire the car. Who in GodÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s name pitched this clunker, why did NBC pick it up and how did the show last a year?
Ã¢â‚¬Å“The MunstersÃ¢â‚¬? (Ã¢â‚¬â„¢64Ã¢â‚¬â€œÃ¢â‚¬â„¢66): The poor manÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Ã¢â‚¬Å“Addams Family,Ã¢â‚¬? gigantic (physically and intellectually) doofus Herman was a green Frankenstein, his kid a werewolf, his wife a vampiress, and his grandpa Count Dracula. Blond and beautiful cousin Marilyn, however, was considered the family oddball. They had a pet dragon named Spot, who never set the house in fire, and everyone somehow appeared and functioned in the Ã¢â‚¬Å“normalÃ¢â‚¬? world without exhibited in Ã¢â‚¬Å“RipleyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Believe It Or Not.Ã¢â‚¬?
(Dis)honorable mentions: Ã¢â‚¬Å“The Beverly Hillbillies,Ã¢â‚¬? Ã¢â‚¬Å“ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s About Time,” “McHale’s Navy” and Ã¢â‚¬Å“I Dream of Jeannie.Ã¢â‚¬? Those are my picks. Which are YOUR best of the worst?