No Panaceas

Thursday, April 29, 2004
Random Question: Have you ever wondered why there were so many TV shows in the fifties and sixties that featured a widowed father and his one or three sons? Fury, Bonanza, My Three Sons, The Rifleman, The Andy Griffith Show, Courtship of Eddie's Father.

And then there were variations on the theme like The Beverly Hillbillies (widower and daughter) and Family Affair (uncle with niece and nephew).

Was there a single show back then that featured just a mother and child (or children), which now, as then, was the more common single parent type household? The first one I can think of is One Day at a Time, which came a bit later, and featured a divorced (egads!) mother and two daughters. I bet someone out there has written a dissertation on exactly this issue.

This is the kind of weird thing I think about when I've been doing too much grading.