If you are part of the Baby Boom Generation (Those born between 1946 and 1964) you most likely remember how television was, in its infancy. If born later, you may not have experienced things like —
Turning on a television and waiting a considerable amount of time for it to warm up before you could watch it.
In the fifties most viewers were receiving at most, three or if lucky, four different networks for prime time programming. Back then there were only a few networks that presented what everyone watched. They were NBC, The Dumont Network, CBS, and a very latecomer ABC. The choices for what to watch were very limited.
Most families only had one television in the house, and having to decide as a family what to watch each evening could get interesting.
In those days manipulating rabbit ear antennas or rotating large aluminum roof top antennas toward the over the air signal, to finely tune the picture was part of watching TV
Many people born in that period believe that things were better then; that the TV shows were better even with such limited choice, lack of color, and rigid set in stone times for viewing a show.
Back in the infancy of television you got what the local stations gave you, and at night during the prime time hours you got what the networks had decided to give you. There were no video recorders, DVRs or memory sticks for a person to store and manipulate programs so you could watch them when you wanted to watch them. If you wanted to watch I Love Lucy in the early 1950’s you had to be in front of the TV set Mondays between 9:00PM and 9:30PM or you missed it.
My how things have changed!
The television universe today is large and full of hundreds of networks with thousands of shows to choose from all over the world. In the sixties if you wanted to watch a cooking show you had Julia Child, today you have networks that show only cooking shows around the clock. There are other networks for home renovation, outdoor sports, British television shows, etc. The sheer amount of programming out there makes deciding what to watch, at times, a chore. Websites like Yahoo TV or Aol TV can help you cut through this large universe with ease and even point you in the direction to where you can find some of your favorite television shows from the 1950’s and 1960’s.
The delivery methods, or the way people receive their television today has evolved to a point where a viewer has to make even more choices. Do you want television over the air in High Definition with the aid of a set top or roof antenna or through a cable subscription service? Other choices include satellite delivery, or through high speed internet to your computer, or game console such as the Nintendo Wii. You can even now watch television shows on your cell phone, IPod, or IPad while you are sitting on a speeding train or at the beach.
The greatest change however, for your convenience, is the control you now have of the programming. You now have the ability to watch what you want, when you want with just a few clicks of the mouse. You can go to websites like Hulu.com, Clicker.com , or Netflix.com and find hundreds of TV shows that are available to watch, many of them from the golden age of television that many consider the 1950’s and 1960’s to be. Most of these shows are free to view and if you want to go back to that golden age you can. Some of the shows available from that era include The Lone Ranger, Dragnet, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Twilight Zone, Gunsmoke, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Sea Hunt, Highway Patrol, The Rifleman and many more.
So if you don’t like today’s television, and are feeling nostalgic sit down and watch a few episodes of some of your favorite shows from long ago. There is no need to twist and turn an antenna, or be in front of the screen at a certain time, it’s all there for you to view any time you want. Sit back, go back, and enjoy.