Classic TV: The 40s : kids' shows

kids' shows

Most kids' shows were blatantly commercial. The ads, which were mostly recited by cast members, took up most of the shows. Howdy Doody sang of the virtues of Colgate Toothpaste and Poll Parrot Shoes and handed off the Mason Mint and Three Musketeers commercial readings to Rex Marshall. Smilin' Ed actually had a filmed commercial for good old Buster Brown Shoes. There was even a promotional ad for TV, no particular brand, just buy a TV of your own and stop sponging off the neighbors. A nasal kid, seemingly escaped from the Horn & Hardart's Children's Hour sang "I want a television Christmas, a world of magic all my own." Motorola TV had its own jingle sung to the tune of Happy Birthday. The Lone Ranger had filmed commercials for Cheerios. Groucho Marx pushed DeSotos and Plymouths. Speidel Watch bands sponsored several shows, Ed Wynn for one and later the Paul Winchell-Jerry Mahoney Show. The watch bands cost more than my watch. I do not remember who sponsored Rudy Kazootie after RCA left (and Galapoochie Pup replaced Little Nipper as spokesdog). The only low key kids' show that I can remember in those pre-Ding Dong School, Captain Kangaroo days was Children's Theater with Ray Forrest on WNBT.

Re: kids' shows

....and exactly how are later kids shows any different? Both "Yu-Gi-Oh!" (2000s) and "He-Man" (1980s) were giant commercials.



Have you played Atari today?

Re: kids' shows

I haven't seen those shows, but I believe you. In the 60s, after the amazing success of Huckleberry Hound and Yogi Bear, every kids' product wanted a Hanna-Barbera show they could stick their billboards on. Perhaps you remember Magilla Gorilla (he's Ideal) and Peter Potamus (he was Ideal too, but I can't remember his song). Fred Flintstone didn't count as a kids' show since Fred and Barney smoked the sponsor's cigarettes, but I have trouble believing more adults watched the show than kids.
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