The Unauthorized Biography of Rosco P. Coltrane

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Location: Owensboro, Kentucky, United States

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Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Zen and The Art of Slim Goodbody

I wish there was a PBS Classics Channel. I would watch it all the time.

I am convinced that 1980's PBS was by far the best television ever produced. Maybe it is the fact that most of today's television is boring reality shows. Maybe it is just the nostalgia factor.

But 1980's PBS was the best. I know the teachers thought so. They could wheel in one of those huge televisions into the classroom, dim the lights, put on KET (Kentucky Educational Television), and go have a smoke.

There were so many shows.

There was a young Ben Affleck in Voyage of the Mimi who was a troubled young boy sent out to sea with his uncle. At the end of each episode he would relay some knowledge that he had picked up like what starboard and port meant.

I remember there was also a show about a librarian that fell asleep one day in her bookmobile. When she woke up she found that the human race had been wiped out and aliens in very bad costumes were trying to vanquish another race of aliens by researching things in the library using the Dewey Decimal System. No one believes me when I talk about this show. But I swear it existed.

Of course there was 3-2-1-Contact who always featured the Bloodhound Gang. There was Mr. Rogers who along with Captain Kangaroo is on the Mount Rushmore of Children's TV.

Who could forget the Electric Company?

But the image that will forever be scared in my memory is that of one Slim Goodbody.

Here is this guy with a skintight bodysuit and a bad perm. He would teach us all about the digestive system and the right way to use a toothbrush. Though, for us 3rd grade boys it was always a bit on the confusing side to see where Slim's large intestine ended.

Now, looking back on the entire phenomenon that was, and actually still is, Slim Goodbody, I think two things:

That whole flesh-colored bodysuit is a little bit creepy for children's TV shows...

But, you have to give it to ol' Slim, 20 some odd years of running around in said body suit takes some real, well, uh, body parts that are conspicuously not painted on...

4 Comments:

Blogger sarah j. said...

I think I actually remember the librarian and her bookmobile too....

8:51 AM  
Blogger Drew Caperton said...

Down in South Louisiana, our school systems tended to be... sub-par. PBS was not something I was introduced to until much later in life. I'm sure some good ole' boy in the school system thought those liberals on the PBS channel didn't need to be infiltrating our young minds. Thank you Max Skidmore, superintendant of the best school district in the world!

9:44 AM  
Blogger terra dawn said...

When I was little I lived in England so I guess I totally missed these shows. My grandmother would tape shows and send them to me but they were usually "My Little Pony", "Rainbow Bright", "Mighty Mouse", and "Superman"... I guess she had no tolerance for Slim Goodbody.

4:39 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

i was a big fan of almost all those shows. we actually watched voyage of the mimi in my alpha class in 5th grade. another favorite you didn't mention was Square One. a show all about math that was really cool to me at the time.

4:06 PM  

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