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Can you tell I'm not in school right now? - A Valley Full of Clouds

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Something hit me as I was responding to comments on the Christmas movie post. It used to be, back in the dim ages when I was a kid, we had 3 TV channels - ABC, NBC, CBS. If you lived in a major market, you might have a PBS station, or maybe 2 ABC stations, etc., but basically, you watched what they wanted to show you on their schedule.

Once a year, we got to see the various Christmas specials (Grinch, Charlie Brown, Rudolph, etc.) and Wizard of Oz and if you missed out, that was it for a year. And everybody pretty much watched the same thing. The January when I was in 6th grade, literally everybody I knew, except 1 girl whose parents wouldn't let her watch anything but PBS, watched Wizard of Oz. Everybody. It was a shared experience, although we were sharing it in different houses.

That's not the case anymore. Charlie Brown Christmas has been on several times, same with most of the other 'traditional' Christmas shows and films. Different times, different channels, and of course with DVR, you can pretty much watch when you want as many times as you want. Same with DVDs. You can watch Christmas shows in July if you want. It's not a group experience anymore, it's very individualistic and our choices have expanded dramatically.

I don't know if it's good or bad, but it's definitely different, and my grandchildren, when they are my age, will not have the same attachment to those shows as harbingers of Christmas. But then, my parents, who grew up before TV, or their parents, who grew up before radio even, didn't have the attachment either and yet they managed to celebrate.
I guess every generation makes its own traditions, and as long as you do something that sets this season apart from the rest of the year, it will be special.

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Date:December 21st, 2009 06:58 pm (UTC)

Wizard of Oz

I really don't remember the Wizard of Oz has a Christmas movie. I know they refer to it now as a "holiday classic"; but I remember it more in March or April than Christmas.

As with most things, the more you see it, the more you get used to it, the less meaning and the less interesting it becomes. I think that's the problem with as many channels as we have.

I saw a really horrible 1970's rendition of Miracle on 34th Street this weekend. It might has well have been a train wreck. Sometimes, the OLD ones are the best.
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Date:December 21st, 2009 07:34 pm (UTC)

Re: Wizard of Oz

I grew up with The Wizard of Oz as a Christmas-Eve tradition. The whole family would watch it together, then the kids would leave cookies & milk for Santa and go to bed.

It took me quite a while to get used to the idea of watching it at other times and not in front of my Grandparent's Television.

But then, I'm much older than you. :)

Edited at 2009-12-21 07:34 pm (UTC)
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Date:December 21st, 2009 07:56 pm (UTC)

Re: Wizard of Oz

I was curious about the Christmas Eve thing because I remembered it being on in January, so I did some research -

Wikipedia (for what that's worth) says that "The film's first telecast, in November, 1956, took place shortly after Halloween. The 1959 to 1962 telecasts of The Wizard of Oz occurred later in the year, between Thanksgiving and Christmas. However, beginning in the 1963–64 season the showings would occur in the early months of the year."

suspect that you're just enough older than I am to remember those Christmas Eve showings. Or the TV was different on the West coast than in the boring old Midwest, of course.
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Date:December 21st, 2009 07:59 pm (UTC)

Re: Wizard of Oz

Oh lord. I can spot a 1970's or early 80's film within 5 minutes of viewing it - the production values are just...ugh.

I think familiarity kind of breeds contempt with these movies. When they're once a year occasions, it's special. When you can put the DVD in any time you like, it's definitely less appealing.
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