Top Stupid Things about the 'Happy Days' TV series (1974-1984)

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by Panther, Mar 25, 2020.

  1. czeskleba

    czeskleba Senior Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Yet just six months after Police Squad was cancelled, Cheers premiered. It was ranked 74th out of 77 shows its first season, yet NBC did renew it and give it time to build an audience. The key difference is that the head of NBC (Brandon Tartikoff) really liked Cheers. Whereas the head of ABC (Tony Thomopoulos) didn't get Police Squad at all, and stated that he had cancelled the show because "the viewer had to watch it in order to appreciate it." There was also the fact that NBC was last in the ratings and didn't have many hit shows, so they had more of a "nothing to lose" attitude at the time.
     
  2. Carlperkinscadillac

    Carlperkinscadillac Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Pittsburgh PA
    Turning the Fonz into some kind of weird superhero. He didn’t just turn the jukebox on with his fist, but also lighting. And we all know his prowess at water skiing and bull riding even though he had no prior experience at either.
     
  3. razerx

    razerx Who me?

    Location:
    The East
    I loved Police Squad when it aired and do watch the DVD from time to time. It’s true the viewer needed to be attentive to get all the jokes and according to the network most viewers tend to be multitaskers with the TV on.
     
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  4. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI
    Ted McGinley was on "Married with Children" seven seasons longer than David Garrison, so I wouldn't say his co-starring role on "MWC" was a sign of the demise of the show like the other two examples you stated.
     
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  5. Honey Bunches of Sadness

    Honey Bunches of Sadness Forum Resident

    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    Forgot about Sticks until you mentioned him. Looked up the actor (John Bailey) and - yikes! - he became a porno actor in the 1980s. Wikipedia says he appeared in 140+ adult films. He eventually transitioned to a "non-sex" adult film actor - appearing in comic roles. I didn't know such a thing existed, but there ya go.

    John Bailey (American actor) - Wikipedia
     
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  6. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    It's still a sitcom thing. BTW, he was very well-thought of on Happy Days and was a good dude by all reports, an actor who did the best he could under the circumstances.

    I worked on the final color for all the Police Squad shows in the early 1980s, and the Paramount TV exec who supervised them came in and we just laughed and laughed and laughed all week. His comment was that he and I were about the only people he knew who a) liked the show, b) got all the references, and c) thought it was hilarious. He said the studio hated, hated, hated the show.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2020
  7. Honey Bunches of Sadness

    Honey Bunches of Sadness Forum Resident

    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    Isn't that pretty much the norm for syndicated television?
     
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  8. Honey Bunches of Sadness

    Honey Bunches of Sadness Forum Resident

    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    That was actually a good episode.
     
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  9. Mylene

    Mylene Senior Member

    Fonzie's I like Ike speech references Herbert T. Gillis' Save the Slums speech.
     
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  10. Mylene

    Mylene Senior Member

    This was during it's first run when it was the top rating show in Australia. They'd trim about seven minutes from every episode.
     
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  11. Luke The Drifter

    Luke The Drifter Forum Resident

    Location:
    United States
    This is why I really respect Seinfeld. Jerry turned down huge money to stop the show, because he did not want it to go down hill.
     
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  12. Solitaire1

    Solitaire1 Carpenters Fan

    "Jumping The Shark" doesn't mean that the series is over, it means that the show will never be the same. For me, an example of this in the show Ally McBeal where Billy and Georgia get into a heated argument and Georgia hits Billy so hard that he flies across the room, hits the wall, and lays there unconscious while Georgia storms out of the Unisex with no concern for her husband (see below for a spoiler). It was such a mean scene that it changed the show forever for me.

    I think this is what led to the drastic change in Billy's personality, and later to his death.
     
  13. Jack Lord

    Jack Lord Forum Resident

    Location:
    Washington, DC
    Funny you mention that.

    At the very end of the Happy Days reunion special, Gary Marshall mentioned Jumping the Shark and dismissed it because they were on for many more years. Likewise, I have seen Ted McGinley shrug his shoulders and state each time he joined a cast, the show went on for quite some time. Both were ignoring the term's meaning.

    Ted entered a dying Happy Days. Nobody was going to save it. It had already jumped.

    IMHO although he was not as funny as David Garrison, he was not too bad on MWC. So he was never the reason for a show's demise, but he unintentionally came to symbolize them. And he seems to approach it in good humor.
     
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  14. Manapua

    Manapua Forum Resident

    Location:
    Honolulu
    Yeah, I'm sure he cried all the way to the bank!
     
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  15. czeskleba

    czeskleba Senior Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    It's essentially the point when a show stops being good, at least relative to how it was earlier. It can be due to a cast change, a change in premise or tone, or a significant, unrealistic alteration in a character's behavior patterns. Sometimes (as in Happy Days) it's due to a storyline that's so over-the-top that it strains credibility and seems to violate the overall premise/tone of the show. Of course it's an entirely subjective measure that is arrived at by fan consensus. Shows typically have kind of a bell curve, where signs of decline start appearing before you reach the JTS moment, and further decline continues after that moment. And you're right that it has nothing to do with popularity/ratings. Happy Days was still incredibly popular when the literal JTS episode aired, and continued to be a top ten show for two years afterward.
     
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  16. Manapua

    Manapua Forum Resident

    Location:
    Honolulu
    While this isn't an absolute, it's generally the case more often than not. Bewitched is a good example. With Dick York as Darrin for the first 5 seasons, the show was a Top 10 or Top 10 adjacent hit. Once Dick Sargent took over the role, it fell out of the Top 20 and continued to plummet until the 8th and final season.
     
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  17. Solitaire1

    Solitaire1 Carpenters Fan

    I think part of the reason Bewitched fell was due to the move away from somewhat ordinary situations to more outlandish ones (such as historical figures making regular appearances, Samantha becoming Queen of the Witches).
     
  18. Manapua

    Manapua Forum Resident

    Location:
    Honolulu
    That kind of stuff goes back to season 3 with Ben Franklin, season 4 with Leonardo Da Vinci and season 5 with Napoleon Bonaparte so using historical figures was already a precedent. And Sam became Queen in season 4 but that plot point was soon dropped, never to return. For me, the acting and writing got lazy after season 6 and especially Montgomery seemed over it.
     
  19. The Bill-Dozer

    The Bill-Dozer Active Member

    Location:
    Memphis
    Heyyyyy
     
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  20. Carlperkinscadillac

    Carlperkinscadillac Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Pittsburgh PA
    Sit on it
     
  21. utopiarun

    utopiarun "on the road to Utopia"

    Location:
    Staten Island NY
    Unfortunately IMO it went downhill after Larry David left.
     
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  22. Solitaire1

    Solitaire1 Carpenters Fan

    I have the book and audiobook of Jump The Shark by John Hein. The phrase came around when he and his friends were discussing TV shows and when they went wrong. There were arguments about when it occurred on various shows (if I remember correctly the following were mentioned: The Flintstones - The Great Kazoo, Scooby-Doo - Scrappy Doo, The Love Boat - Vicki, The Brady Bunch - Cousin Oliver). However, when someone mentioned when Fonzie jumped the shark on Happy Days there was dead silence, no one disagreed. This led to a website named Jump The Shark.
     
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  23. czeskleba

    czeskleba Senior Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    When the old website was active there was disagreement though. This snapsnot shows that (apparently aside from the actual shark jumping) the top two vote getters for JTS moment were switching to multi-cam/live audience, and Ron Howard's departure. It's funny that there could be any debate about whether Happy Days "jumped the shark" at any point aside from the actual jumping the shark episode, but there was.
     
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  24. Luke The Drifter

    Luke The Drifter Forum Resident

    Location:
    United States
    I love seasons 8 & 9. I doubt many would say it “jumped the shark”. YMMV
     
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  25. Manapua

    Manapua Forum Resident

    Location:
    Honolulu
    Yup, there are some real gems sprinkled in there.
     

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