September 17, 2007

A Very Important Family Special: Part II

Really, what IS this, anyway? Was NBC legally obligated to create and broadcast it? Even when I saw it as a kid, I recognized that the laughter was wildly inappropriate, serving only to bring awkward levity to a scene which should be darkly sober.


stexe said...

Ab-so-lutely. I almost chose this very clip, but went with the cartoon drug war instead. It's the most uncomfortable and unpleasant television I've ever seen. For the next several years, millions of kids my age would do a mock-tearful imitation of the line, "he tried to touch me!". We were the target audience, so I don't think it worked.

The nancy reagan "just say no" episode is almost as bizarre, when arnold is "scoring" from an eight-year old at the playground. And oh man, the epilipsy episode (epilepisode?)... what a fucked up show.

Lance Ehlers said...

Well, keep in mind that Diff'rent Strokes served as a launching pad for a few spinoffs. Maybe NBC had hoped to repeat the success of Mrs. Garrett with this character as well: "The Peddlin' Pedophile" starring WKRP's Gordon Jump. Few shows have truly succeeded in tapping the demographic of adults who sexually exploit children. Though, a few came close.

stexe said...

Ironically, while the child actors of different strokes might not have been exploited sexually, they must've been equally exploited by their jobs to have turned out the way they did.