It’s not as bad as the case of the old “Doctor Who” episodes that were intentionally destroyed after their broadcast, but in this age where it’s easy for a streaming service to make something available to its subscribers, there are still a lot of TV shows you simply can’t see.
“American Dreams” Season 3 (2004-05, NBC), episodes 1-5 – Like the new show “Jack & Bobby,” “American Dreams” conjures up better days, but it looks to the past instead of the future. It lionizes the 1960s with an “American Bandstand” soundtrack and contemporizes the period by having modern pop stars play dress-up while covering classics by their predecessors (I guarantee you won’t hear Hilary Duff singing “Leader of the Pack” on any other show). The parallel between Vietnam and Iraq is there for those who want it, but “American Dreams,” especially as of last season, has a softer touch than you’d think.
“American Dreams” Season 1 (2002-03, NBC) – OK, I’m not going so far as to say this series is actually good, but the “American Bandstand” segments and pre-Vietnam innocence are charming enough that I’ll continue taping it while watching “The Simpsons.” And don’t be fooled by the obnoxious NBC ads — the show itself has a nice sense of understatement.
Since I’m venturing into politics with this post (which will eventually be about television), I’ll admit my bias up front: I’ll be voting for the Libertarian Party ticket of Johnson-Gray in November. But I think anyone who’s been paying attention knows that the growing distrust of Big Government, Big Spending and Big War is the noteworthy political development of 2012 (with its roots in 2008, when Ron Paul first ran for the Republican nomination).
I was shocked — pleasantly so — to find the first reference to “American Dreams” only five paragraphs into the Associated Press’ feature obituary on Dick Clark, who died on Wednesday at age 82.
I noticed that whatever company distributes “Roswell” DVDs recently repackaged them with Katherine Heigl prominently featured on the cover art. Artistically, it’s ridiculous, because Heigl’s Isabel was the fourth-most-important female character on the show, behind Liz, Maria and Tess. But as a marketing move, it’s smart. If it gets “Grey’s Anatomy” fans to discover a great show like “Roswell,” I’m all for it.
It’s appropriate that Brittany Snow spells her name the normal way, rather than “Britney,” “Brittani” or “Britni.” The actress strikes me as an old-fashioned girl, because I first saw her as Meg Pryor in the 1960s-set “American Dreams,” that 2002-05 NBC series where Donovan’s “Season of the Witch” played in the background during every episode.