The passing of Sherwood Schwartz had me thinking about all the great shows he left us. Okay...so there were honestly only two of them that I hold dear. But those two were a couple of juggernauts. Those two alone were enough. "Brady Bunch" is easily the most popular of his creations to make it the MOST memorable. Which is exactly why I chose to reflect on "Gilligan's Island". To give it a little more shine that it would have otherwise not gotten.
My first memory of the show was watching it at Popoo and Grandma's house back in the day. Teandra and I would spend just about every summer down there when we were shorties. We would spend the better part of the day playing outside then come inside in the afternoon to watch some good ol' Channel 41. This was one of the many shows that would grace their afternoon line-up.
The one thing that I always recall the clearest was my pessimism with the believability of the show. Not so much the most obvious thing that people always state. You know what that is, right? It was wondering how the Professor could make all those gadgets out of the most primitive items (like a car...remember that one??) but couldn't fix the hole in the boat. No...for me I always questioned the feasibility of many of the things they had on that island. Things like the aforementioned car.
However, it was those type of things that always made the Gilligan's Island such an awesome place. They were living in these very basic huts but they made them look SO much tha bomb. I swear that those huts were decked out better than my college dorm room. I may have even traded one of those joints for my room when I was a shortie. They just had them looking so homey.
Don't even get me started on the sex appeal factor of the show. You know I'm talking about Ginger and Mary Ann. Yes...I was only a prepubescent kid at the time, but that was also the time I was taking notice of girls. And there was plenty to notice about both Ginger and Mary Ann. Mary Ann was always the one I was more partial to. Her down-to-earth style had much more of an allure than Ginger's over-the-top sensuality. It also didn't hurt that Mary Ann claimed to be from Kansas.
When it was all said and done, it was the overall atmosphere that Schwartz had created with that show that made it so amazing. These characters made it seem like living on a deserted island would be the ultimate life. They made you wish you could also get stranded so you too could live in a primitive paradise of your own. Or at the very least, it made you wish that you could visit their paradise if only to chill with them for a little bit. Gilligan's Island was a utopia all its own and I still can't get enough of it.
Unfortunately, you'd be hard-pressed to find "Gilligan's Island" in syndication anywhere these days. It seems networks are more willing to show reruns of shows that have only been off the air a few years (or in some cases not even off the air yet) rather than a classic like this one. It's too bad too because it's been off the air so long that there's an entire generation that has never even heard of it. I would have thought that Scwhartz's passing would have seen a renewed interest in it. Nothing yet though. I'm hopeful some station will still make it happen. We could all use a 3-hour tour in our life.