Monday, July 23, 2007

No More Mourning Saturday Mornings


Remember how awesome Saturday's used to be?

If you're in your mid-twenties, you probably don't. You were probably at a soccer game or a ballet.

If you're like me and of a... certain... age, you probably were having none of this. You were probably participating in that wonderful ritual of watching Saturday morning cartoons. You knew the drill, waking up before your parent(s), forgoing the brushing of teeth, heading straight for the kitchen in order to grab the biggest bowl in which to pour your milk and cereal in which to fortify yourself for the day's mind-blowing events.

Would they show "(Verb!) That's What Happening!" on today's Schoolhouse Rock? Would Batman and Robin be smart enought to defeat The Moon Man? Would this be the week my fave episode of Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, "Seven Little Super-Heroes" would re-air? What new way would The Super Friends find to let The Legion of Doom escape this week?

Saturdays were kind of magical back then. I was allowed to be in my own world. I was allowed to be quiet. I was allowed to be myself. It was the one day where I was allowed the privilege of truly being a kid.

Of course, I had chores to do. Of course, I went swimming too but the unwritten rule was balance and in that balance, there was the opportunity to make the day what you would make of it.

Today, I work about six days a week and I am thankful for it but sometimes... well... you wish for Saturday.

Last Saturday, I got a little of it back.

I came to work with a Super-Friends DVD set in hand. We (Big Monkey Comics) moved in April and in order to give one of our new rooms a sense of "movement," we put a TV and a DVD player in there. What usually happens is that someone walks in, watches for a few minutes, while commenting on how great cartoons used to be and then they remember that they some appointment to keep and they move on.

This Saturday was a bit different. Two little boys came in with their father. Now, these two little boys are let's just say... active. They just always seem to be on. Their father has been away from comics for a few years and has started to dip his toes back in and really seems to be enjoying it. Plus, he's a Blue Beetle fan so he's aces in our book. While he was off in one of the other rooms, we noticed something we hadn't heard before while the little folks were in. Other than the TV, absolute quiet.

As anyone who has or has worked with little boys knows, absolute quiet means two things:

One: They've managed to knock each other out.

Or...

Two: They're plain up to no-good and they don't want anyone to know they're up to no-good.

Quietly, I walked into the room, ready for whatever the day would bring and I was completely and utterly charmed.

There they were, these two little boys, lying down, their chins in their hands. Little legs gently kicking in the air, absolutely quiet, enraptured by The Super Friends.

It was Saturday morning all over again.

---------------------------------------------------

Also, have you been wondering, like I have, what Ted Kord's been up to in the after-life? Find out at The Bugle's Planet.

10 comments:

rlsims said...

Cool stuff. As silly as they were, I always enjoyed the old Grantray-Lawrence/Ralph Bakshi Spidey reruns, along with Super Friends and Johnny Quest. Plus The Bug Bunny Road Runner Hour, before the stuff got over-exposed to death in syndication.

Glad to hear kids can still enjoy those old shows.

John Foley said...

That's... ALCOHOL!!!

Harvey Jerkwater said...

A bitter childhood memory: how many Saturday mornings Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends were pre-empted for "special news reports" about President Reagan's colon operations.

I'm not joking. It happened several times.

I didn't give a damn about presidential butthole polyps! I wanted Spider-Man, dang it!

Siskoid said...

We had the same childhood.

On the podcast, which I loved as usual - and hey, you did answer my question about panelist vs. blogger, so why wouldn't I? - you all derided your speaking performances, but listen, you're my favorite "character" on there, so you must be better than you think.

And remember: Make sure Aunt May never dusts the fireplace mantle!

SallyP said...

I...I miss Saturday mornings. There was also Jonny Quest and Space Ghost, and Zorro and Tarzan and stuff. And all those terrible, wonderful Hanna-Barbera creations.

*sigh*

Lois Lane said...

Oh yeah, so true! I had a similar moment recently, when I gave my 4 year old son a DVD of the "New Adventures of Batman" cartoons from the 1970s to watch during a cross country flight. He was mesmerized.

Devon said...

RLSims:

I know. I lived in Washington DC as a kid and they would play Looney Tunes morning and afternoon here.

I suspect that's why my fascination with Bugs and the gang diminished as I got older, due to their constant overexposure here.

Harvey:

If I remember right, Wimbeldon was also a major pain in the ass, as well.

Siskoid:

Thanks, as always!

SallyP:

I'll take a an hour of Super Friends over a whole season of almost anything... except maybe, Goldie Gold and Action Jack.

Lois Lane:

The classic's never go out of style. ;)

Andrew said...

You know I'm not even up to my mid-twenties, but I have only the fondest memories of my Saturday mornings as well....

Marvel Action Hour (FF & Iron Man; the second season of each was actually good), Spider-Man, X-Men, Batman, The Tick, TMNT, Ghostbusters, Animaniacs, etc etc... (not to mention all the reruns of old-school stuff you and EVEN older generations enjoyed)

Basically, everything that got me interested in comics in the first place.

All that said, I did eventually have to miss an hour or two of my Saturdays every time I couldn't get out of soccer practice. But trust me...I had my priorities straight.

verification word: bcocwhy? I'm sorry but that's a question I just _don't_ want to answer.

K26dp said...

My four-year-old is all about the Legion Of Doom these days. I just ordered Superfriends: SuperPowers for him.

It's amazing how much he prefers the cartoons of my youth to the cartoons of today. He's all about the Superfriends, Scooby-Doo, and Schoolhouse Rock.

Jeremeyes said...

I'm 25 and there were incredible marathons of saturday morning cartoons when I was a kid! Johnny Quest, Flintstones, Jetsons, Spider-Man, X-Men, the old Superman cartoon, all the looney tunes stuff, Saturday mornings were great in the 80's and 90's.