Hello bubbles and giggles! Guess who is back for at least a day?
I know, my hiatus has been extended, but what you gonna do? I discovered I liked having free time in the evenings. Plus, with a work schedule change, doing the daily post just burned me out. But I’m going to try to do a weekly post. I haven’t settled on a day yet, so just because you’re reading this Tuesday morning doesn’t mean you’ll get one every Tuesday. It just means I’m sick and not at work today so I have time.
Speaking of being sick, did you know there’s a lot of crap on TV these days? And I’m not talking cable, either. Nope, over the air TV. So I decided to do a little roaming of the stations that I don’t generally watch. And I stopped on a show that was....strangely familiar. I recognized it. But only barely. It was a half hour sitcom, and I saw the last, oh...10 minutes of it. But then, there was another one on right after, so I watched it. Now, The title of the show didn’t really ring a bell. But the theme song sure did. So did the some of the sets. And a couple of the actors.
So I did some researching and my memories were refreshed.
The show was called It’s About Time, and it aired for one season on CBS in 1966-67. It was created by that 60’s legend Sherwood Schwartz. The premise was simple enough: two astronauts, Mac, (Frank Aletter), and Hector, (Jack Mullaney), broke the speed of light in their very Apollo-looking space craft and ended up going back in time to the days of cavemen and dinosaurs. There they met up with a family of cave-people led by Gronk, (Joe E. Ross), and his wife Shag, (Imogene Cocoa). It should be noted that about episodes into the season the writers discovered that ‘shag’ was English slang for coitus, so they quietly changed it to Shad.
I realized that, sometime in my childhood, I’m thinking around 1975 or 76, I was exposed to this show briefly in the form of afternoon reruns. Because I know I have heard the theme before. I even remembered how some of it went.
As for the show it’s self, I don’t remember too much. Sure, the actors are familiar. Joe E Ross was on the Phil Silvers Show, and also played Patrolman Toody on ‘Car 54 Where Are You’. He was known for his catch phrase of ‘Ooh-Oooh!’ which he used on several shows and also during voice work on cartoons. (he was the desk sergeant in Hong Kong Phooey). He’s one of those actors you see and just recognize because he had bit parts in so many shows.
Just like the woman who played his wife, Imogene Cocoa. Many of you will know the name, but you might not be able to place the face it belongs too. But when you see the face, you know her because, well, she’s was in a lot of shows and movies, as well as on Broadway. But most of you will know her as Aunt Edna on National Lampoons Vacation.
The two astronauts you may recognize from various movies and TV shows, but they weren’t the big stars of the show. Gronk and Shag/Shad were.
If you choose to do so, you can find full episodes on Youtube. Don’t expect anything spectacular, though. Remember, this is from the creative mind of Sherwood Schwartz. Which brings up another fact about the show.
While watching it, some of the show seemed familiar. That’s because It’s About Time shared some sets with another of Schwartz’s shows that was being filmed at the time, Gilligans Island.
I haven’t had a chance to see all of the episodes yet, but I’m working on it.
Stop reading if you don’t want a show from 1966 to be spoiled for you!
One of the reasons it only lasted one season was, well really....how much can you do involving astronauts and cavemen? Sure, they fight dinosaurs. And other tribes of cave men who looked suspiciously like the cannibals Gilligan and crew had to deal with. But about 2/3 of the way into the season Schwartz knew it was getting too repetitive and he was loosing viewers.
So, along about episode 18, Mac and Hector fixed their spacecraft. They were finally able to use their Apollo-like space capsule to lift off from caveman land and accelerate up to, and exceed the speed of light again to return to their own time.
And of course they took Gronk, Shag/Shad and their two kids back to the future with them because, why not?
Oh, but hijinks were in store! Imagine a family of cavemen who were used to dinosaurs being thrust into 1966 New York City!
As it turned out, having cavemen in modern times was just as limited as having modern people in prehistoric times. After 7 more episodes, the show was, sadly, cancelled after just one season.
This is a link to episode #3, The Initiation. This is the one I saw the last half of. At least watch the opening theme. It’s worth it.
Well, this wasn’t a typical oddity that you were all used to. But hey, it sure was odd, right? Like I stated earlier, I’m going to try and do a post each week on a regular basis. Not sure what day, or when they’ll start, but I will return! (ok MacArthur...)