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Saturday Morning TV: Sid & Marty Krofft

I love TV and I grew up watching these Saturday morning shows. I sung the songs, wore thee Halloween costumes. Precious memories.

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Saturday morning televsion

Saturday morning television has the best TV shows for kids of all ages. Today's TV is quite different from what was on in the 70's and 80's, but the idea is the same. Kids shows, cartoons, toy commercials and general entertainment for the under 10 crowd, it is the only day of the week a child does not have to be peeled out of bed.

From the late 60's straight through the 70's and on into the 80's, Saturday mornings were basically filled with shows created by the producing brothers, Sid and Marty Krofft. During that time period, it was very hard not to find at least one of their shows airing during any given Saturday morning.

Sid Krofft (born July 30, 1929) and Marty Krofft (born April 9, 1937) brought to TV screens everywhere a new form of entertainment for kids of all ages. Live action shows with some actors in elaborate costumes and makeup, that had stories that were a mix of fantasy and whimsy. Often using musical numbers and variety sketches within these shows, it offered children a wide array of entertainment each and every Saturday morning.

To look back at some of the shows they produced, one can see that the budget for these shows was quite low and the quality suffered from it. But, the children of that time period didn't seem to care and everyone knew who H.R. Pufnstuf and Sigmund were.

The shows and characters brought to the small screen by the Krofft brothers will go down in history as some of the most unforgettable. Sea monsters, dinosaurs, talking flutes will remain a beloved part of many people's childhood.

Below are a few videos of some the best the Krofft brothers produced:

the-best-of-sid-and-marty-krofft

Who could forget the all-time classic, H.R. Pufnstuf. It was the first of many Krofft live-action, life size puppet television shows. Originally aired from 9/6/1969 to 12/27/1969.

Running from 1973 to 1975 with 29 episodes, Sigmund and the Sea Monsters is another fanstastic TV show produced by the Krofft brothers.

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Oh, The Bugaloos, a childhood favorite for many, which ran from 1970 to 1972. Who could forget that catchy opening intro?? And, Caroline Ellis who played Joy the butterfly was especially a favorite for young boys everywhere.

List of Projects 1957-2009:

TV Series:

  • Family Affair (1966)
  • Land of the Lost (1991)
  • D.C. Follies (1987)
  • Pryor's Place (1984)
  • Barbara Mandrell and the Mandrell Sisters (1980)
  • Pink Lady and Jeff (1980)
  • The Krofft Superstar Hour (1978; aka The Bay City Rollers Show)
  • Horror Hotel
  • The Lost Island
  • The Brady Bunch Hour (1977)
  • The Krofft Supershow (1976)
  • Dr. Shrinker (1976)
  • Electra Woman and Dyna Girl (1976)
  • Kaptain Kool and the Kongs (1976)
  • Wonderbug (1976)
  • Bigfoot and Wildboy (1977)
  • Magic Mongo (1977)
  • Donny & Marie (1976; aka The Osmond Family Show)
  • The Lost Saucer (1975)
  • Far Out Space Nuts (1975)
  • Land of the Lost (1974)
  • Sigmund and the Sea Monsters (1973)
  • Lidsville (1971)
  • The Bugaloos (1970)
  • H.R. Pufnstuf (1969)
  • The Banana Splits Adventure Hour (1968) - Created the costumes for the stars, but did not produce the show
  • The Dean Martin Show (1965) - The Krofft puppets had a brief, semi-regular stint on the show.

TV Specials/Pilots:

  • Electra Woman and Dyna Girl (2001, unaired pilot)
  • Krofft Late Night (1991)
  • Sid & Marty Krofft's Red Eye Express (1988)
  • The Patti LaBelle Show (1985)
  • Rock 'n' Wrestling Saturday Spectacular (1985)
  • The Cracker Brothers (1985)
  • Saturday's the Place (1984)
  • Anson & Lorrie (1981)
  • Bobby Vinton's Rock 'n' Rollers (1978)
  • The Krofft Komedy Hour (1978)
  • The Bay City Rollers Meet the Saturday Superstars (1978)
  • Kaptain Kool and the Kongs Present ABC All-Star Saturday (1977)
  • The Brady Bunch Variety Hour (1976)
  • The Paul Lynde Halloween Special (1976) - Did not produce, but includes Witchiepoo & other Krofft regulars
  • Jimmy Osmond Presents ABC's Saturday Sneak Peek (1976)
  • Really Raquel (1974)
  • The World of Sid & Marty Krofft at the Hollywood Bowl (1973)
  • Fol-de-Rol (1972)
  • Here's Irving (1957, unaired pilot)

Films:

  • Land of the Lost (2009)
  • Side Show (1981)
  • Middle Age Crazy (1980)
  • Pufnstuf (1970)

Live Shows:

  • Comedy Kings (1988)
  • A Broadway Baby (1984)
  • Fol-de-Rol (1968)
  • Kaleidescope (1968)
  • Circus (1966)
  • Funny World (1966)
  • Les Poupées de Paris (1961)

From 1974-1977, Land of the Lost spurred the imagination of many children through those years. Dinosaurs and Sleestaks were a favorite of many. This classic intro brings back memories!

Cultural impact

There is no denying that the work of Sid and Marty Krofft to bring these shows to Saturday mornings has had some impact on American culture of the 70's. The idea of creating a day just for kids to watch TV and have their own programming, may not have been theirs, but they were the ones who fully realized what children of that time wanted to watch. The kids who watched TV on those Saturday mornings in the 70's are all grown up now and probably have children of their own, and understand the importance of Saturday morning television!

Do you have a favorite not listed?

Retro Fan on April 10, 2018:

The 1970s gave us my favorite TV shows and movies. One of my favorites is the Land of the Lost TV show, from 1974-1976. It ran for three seasons with 43 episodes. Father Rick Marshall, played by Spencer Milligan was in the first two seasons, and Uncle Jack, played by Ron Harper, was in the third season. Various Dinosaurs, prehistoric reptiles, intelligent lizard people knows as the Sleestaks, and intelligent ape men known as Pakuni, are the basic characters. Enik the Altrusian was in all three seasons, and Zarn the being of light, appeared in the second season, and Malak the caveman appeared in the third season. Cha-ka, Ta, and Sa were the three Pakunis, Grumpy the Tyrannosar, Big Alice the Allosaurus, Emily the Brontosaurus, Dopey the baby Brontosaurus, and Spike the Triceratops were the main Dinosaurs in the show, and Torchy the fire breathing Dimetrodon(a Reptile from the Permian period before the Dinosaurs existed), and Lulu, a two headed aquatic monster appeared in the third season.

Gene Warren and Wah-chang did the special effects and miniatures. The miniature Dinosaurs were done by stop motion animation and the prehistoric scenery is impressively done. The Dinosaurs in this show have a very distinctive look and very realistic.

The concept of time travel appeals to me. My favorite episodes from the first season are: "the Stranger," and "Circle." In season 2, my favorite episodes are "Zarn," and "Split Personality." The best episodes in the third season are "The Abominable Snowman." Zarn the being of light appeared in three episodes in the show's second season in 1975. In the first season, Will and his son Rick explore the Mist Marsh and find a space ship like vehicle. A woman named Sharon Williams emerges from this spaceship piloted by the Zarn. The woman is revealed to be some kind of robot at the end of the episode sent by Zarn to study the Marshall family.

The characters, plots, the scenery, the various creatures, and the music are all well done and memorable. This show has a lot of sentimental value for me as it takes me back to my childhood.

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