On The Merits Of Revisiting Children’s Television Shows As An Adult

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On the Merits of Revisiting Children s Television Shows as an Adult TV 280x186 jpgSure, having Friends show up on Nick at Nite makes us feel old. But you know what doesn’t make us feel old, even though it probably should? Revisiting our favorite childhood television shows. Go ahead, you can say it: Why, with the great wealth of programming available, would we ever need to go back and re-watch things we’ve already seen, in many cases decades ago? But don’t knock it. Really. Bizarre though it may seem, there’s a lot to be gained from revisiting favorites from your kidhood. Don’t believe me? Try these reasons on for size:

The nostalgia factor.
This is sort of a no-brainer. Sometimes—frequently, actually—the adult world sucks. What better way to escape it, however temporarily, than through a marathon viewing of your favorite childhood TV shows? Make a pillow fort and curl up with the Ninja Turtles or hide under the covers while watching Goosebumps. It’ll make you feel better. I promise. Plus, your mom can’t yell at you to turn off the television and go play outside anymore.

You can now fully appreciate some of the weirder ones.
Rocko’s Modern Life? Ren and Stimpy? Even Pete and ‘Pete, to an extent? Really friggin’ weird! I remember loving all of these shows as a kid, though honestly, I probably couldn’t have told you why. Now I can. It has something to do with the surreal nature of life as viewed through the lens of an animated figure and other such overeducated liberal arts nonsense.
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Two words: TV Tropes.
Now you can identify every possible trope in all your favorite childhood shows. Watching Are You Afraid of the Dark? while keeping an eye out for Honest John’s Dealership is a whole new experience.

You can connect with other people who loved the same shows you once did.
Natalie and I recently bonded over a shared love of ReBoot, so there was someone to share the excitement with when we both realized that ReBoot had appeared on Netflix. See? Television CAN be a social event!

Source material comparison analysis.
Would the 8-year-old you have been interested in comparing Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers with the original Japanese show that its stock footage came from? Probably not. Is the 20-something you interested in this? Yes. No, seriously—it’s fascinating how each Power Rangers episode came up with a totally different story and context for the monsters from Zyuranger. Also, now you’re skilled enough to notice when the stock footage kicks in, and you can laugh at how visible it is when you’re looking for it. Fun drinking game? You betcha!
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You can take a vacation from the glut of reality TV.
Is it just me, or is reality programming starting to take over the television? Think back to a time when reality TV either didn’t exist or was so rare that it was a treat when it showed up. It’s nice, isn’t it? Being in a world where no one cares what the Situation just headbutted? Yeah, we thought so, too.

You guys! Did you know that Marvin from Pulp Fiction voiced Wilt on Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends? I KNOW! CRAZY! Bonus: This knowledge might help you win big on Quiz Night at our friendly neighborhood booze establishment.

You can check out the revamped versions of your favorites and deciding whether or not you can feel superior for having seen them the first time round.
See: Thundercats, My Little Pony, et al.
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It’ll help keep you young at heart.
I know, I know, the whole “stay young at heart” thing seems kind of trite; but it’s not. Kids have a fascinating way of looking at the world, and sometimes, it’s worth remembering how to look at it like that yourself. You might see something—a problem, a challenge, whatever—in a different light, and it might just help you figure out something important. And besides: What’s the point of being an adult if you can’t be a kid every now and again?

What about you guys? What kid’s shows do you like to revisit every now and again?