Nickelodeon. The channel’s migration up our 80’s and 90’s dial is fixed in my memory: 27, 29 (later the Family Channel), 32, 34 (later Telemundo), 36 (or, as my sister called it, “three-six” as in, “oh brother, how about three-six!”), 42. I can’t even tell you what it is now because there are like seven of them, but they’re in the 260s and 270s, nimbly doing their thing around offerings from PBS and Disney. (Remember when you had to pay for the Disney Channel?)
The first time I saw Nick was at my grandparents’ house, a Special Delivery cartoon about the American Revolution (awesome). A few weeks later, at my other grandparents’ house, I discovered Nick at Nite. It must have been 1985 (the year Nick at Nite debuted), because I could read the word Nite but couldn’t figure out the context. In any case, it was way better than The Blanket Show.
A few days ago, I saw a commercial for the newest iteration of the Power Rangers franchise. The Zords are coming to Nick:
Yes, my first thought was: “Really, Power Rangers? 15 years later and you have the same exact production values?
Even I don’t rock flannel on flannel these days.”
Speaking of 1993, I was 13 when Power Rangers debuted in the US. I think I was 15 when I decided to start being ironic. And it was on right before Animaniacs (smartest cartoon masquerading as kid’s show of all time? check), so, you know, I caught a few eps. Plus I had a little sister (which was also my excuse for watching Eureka’s Castle, though I’ll never disavow my love for David the Gnome). It didn’t take long to realize the four main reasons the Power Rangers became so massive:
- Martial Arts
- Robots (that transform)
- All of those things together
Production values? Uncheck. That old footage Saban had lying around happened to combine the three coolest things ever, and that’s all it needed. Speaking of which, later today or tomorrow I want to talk about two awesome blogs that I could spend hours and hours and hours on. Sports uniform history minutiae AND visions of a future that never was? Yes. Yes I will share that goodness with you.
[Update: Read Part 2 here.]