Jason Carr: The things that made Saturday mornings so great

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I feel bad for the youths of today. Who didn’t get to experience the joy of Saturday morning cartoons. The entire reason for existing in the late Seventies and early Eighties.

In what metaverse could you watch new cartoons like Captain Caveman and Hong Kong Phooey alongside classic Looney Tunes, Tom and Jerry and Pink Panther? Nowhere is the answer. Pre-internet. Pre-social media. Pre-everything about 2022.

We are talking about Lucky Charms, shag carpeting, bean bag chairs, Underoos, Tang and Atari. The pinnacle of childhood western civilization circa 1980. No person on earth in its history has ever had it better than a suburban kid in that era. Back when America was a shared ideal and not a political slogan. When I was 10 no one was sending me off to the salt mines. I was a nice innocent kid who wanted Fred, Daphne, Velma, Shaggy and Scooby to uncover Old Man Jenkins as the masked ghost. And then pretend I didn’t know it all along.

Watch the movie E.T. if you are younger than 44. Tell me you wouldn’t have killed to live in a suburb where a boy befriends an alien…and it’s not a movie by Marvel. And there’s government agents and the alien almost dies and you want to cry your eyes out. Oh, right. Stranger Things. Not the same. Close. But not remotely the same. But you do you, Stranger Things.

You would have to have been there. 1982 was my favorite year. Cusp of the dawn of cable television and HBO. Still landline telephones that you had to dial. Top 40 radio at its peak. Bill Bonds and Mort Crim on local TV. Sir Graves Ghastly and Count Scary hosting horror movies. BMX bikes. Pizza Hut with the personal pan pizza and salad bar and crushed ice Pepsi in the red plastic cups. Going to the drive-in. I weep for you younger ones who missed out.

Anyway, how are you?

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