Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Don't stifle dese memories, Edith

Forty years ago tonight, All in the Family made its network debut. I loved that show, and to this very day Carroll O'Connor's Archie Bunker remains my choice as the greatest character in television history.

Whenever I happen to catch an episode on Nick at Nite or whatever network shows such stuff these days, I remain amazed at the quality of the acting, writing and directing that made All in the Family so great way back when.

And I especially remain amazed at how relevant the show still is.

Sure, Watergate and Nixon and Vietnam and all the other things Archie and Meathead argued about now are ancient history. But the way the show dealt with subjects such as race relations, gay rights, abortion, sex, recessionary times, human emotions, family issues, job insecurity and patriotism ... well, let's just say today's TV honchos could learn a thing or three about how to effectively put on a show that really matters. Not to mention a show capable of making the viewer laugh hysterically five or six times every half hour.

As Archie and Edith sang before every episode, "Those were the days."

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