For nostalgia lovers, there’s nothing like classic TV shows to bring back good memories. While these shows may have some age, they remain popular with old and new fans. An online group of television viewers was asked to name their favorite classic programs that they still love to watch, and their answers were a trip down memory lane.
1. The Bob Newhart Show (1972 – 1978)
The legendary comedian and actor Bob Newhart became synonymous with 1970s comedies thanks to this popular show. In the series, Newhart played a married psychologist who finds himself in funny predicaments involving his wife, friends, neighbors, and patients. Fun fact: In the 1960s, Newhart had a television variety show also called The Bob Newhart Show.
2. Get Smart (1965 – 1970)
During the 1960s, spy movies such as the James Bond franchise gained popularity with movie audiences. Get Smart was a television parody of those movies. Don Adams starred as the hapless Maxwell Smart, also known as Agent 86, and his partner, Agent 99, who both worked for a government spy agency. The show was co-created by actor, writer, and comedian Mel Brooks.
3. The A-Team (1983 – 1987)
Hannibal, Face, Howling, Mad Murdock, and B.A. were four members of an Army Special Forces unit until they were court-martialed for a crime they did not commit. Despite their innocence, they were convicted and sentenced to military prison. They escaped and began working as mercenaries, helping innocent people while evading law enforcement and trying to prove their innocence. For Generation X, this show made Mr. T famous.
4. The Addams Family (1964 – 1966)
The Addams Family may have only been a first-run series for two short years, but since the 1960s, it has become a pop culture phenomenon that continues to reach new fans. Based on a cartoon series published in The New Yorker, the show follows the comically ghoulish exploits of Gomez Addams, his wife, Morticia, daughter Wednesday, son Pugsley, Uncle Fester, Grandmama, Lurch the butler, Thing the severed hand, and excessively hairy Cousin Itt.
5. MASH (1972 – 1983)
Short for Mobile Army Surgical Hospital, MASH brought humor to a serious subject — the Korean War — by telling the stories of the military doctors, nurses, and other medical personnel stationed in South Korea in a unit known as the 4077th. The brilliant ensemble cast helped it win multiple Emmy Awards, and its series finale continues to be one of the most-watched primetime programs in television history.
6. The Andy Griffith Show (1960 – 1968)
Set in the fictional town of Mayberry, North Carolina, Andy Griffith played Sheriff Andy Taylor, a widower raising his young son, Opie, with the help of his Aunt Bee. Mayberry is a small town with memorable characters such as the awkward Barney Fife, Andy’s deputy and cousin, and the endearing Gomer Pyle, whose character went on to have his spinoff show, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.
7. I Love Lucy (1951 – 1957)
I Love Lucy is one of those shows that never gets old, no matter how many years have passed since it was in production. Lucille Ball and her real-life husband, Desi Arnaz, played Lucy, a housewife, and Ricky Ricardo, a bandleader. The show frequently portrayed Lucy’s comical attempts to be included in her husband’s musical career, with an assist from her closest friends, Fred and Ethel Mertz. Ball’s comedic genius is timeless. I Love Lucy continues to be must-see TV.
8. Cheers (1982 – 1993)
For more than a decade, viewers were treated to the comedic exploits of Ted Danson as the character of ladies’ man Sam Malone, a former professional baseball player who opened the bar named Cheers after his career ended. With an ensemble cast of iconic characters such as bartenders Coach and Woody, servers Carla and Diane, manager Rebecca, and regular customers Norm, Cliff, Frasier, and Lilith, it’s no surprise audiences still love Cheers.
9. Twin Peaks (1990 – 1991)
The original Twin Peaks became an overnight pop culture sensation when it aired. Viewers were enthralled with the eerie, secretive nature of the fictitious logging town in the American Northwest. They were also glued to their TVs each week to try and figure out who killed the beautiful Laura Palmer, who was hiding her share of horrific secrets.
10. The Golden Girls (1985 – 1992)
At first glance, one wouldn’t think that a half-hour comedy about four single women over the age of 50 sharing a house would be a hit with audiences. Luckily, The Golden Girls proved the naysayers wrong. The show hasn’t had a first-run episode in more than three decades, but it continues to be enjoyed by old and new fans of all ages.
11. Gilligan’s Island (1964 – 1967)
Seven people are shipwrecked in the middle of the Pacific Ocean after their boat, which was on a three-hour tour, encountered a storm. Referred to as castaways, they use their talents and wits to survive on the island until they can be rescued. The differing personalities of the castaways have made this show entertaining for years beyond its original television run.
12. Matlock (1986 – 1995)
Andy Griffith played another iconic character, Benjamin “Ben” Matlock, an old-fashioned country lawyer practicing in Atlanta, Georgia. Matlock always took up the cases of innocent people who were usually framed to look guilty by the actual perpetrator, who he constantly exposed at the end of the episode. He was also known for always wearing a light gray suit and his penchant for hot dogs.
13. Murder, She Wrote (1984 – 1996)
The late, great Angela Lansbury had a stellar Broadway and movie career before Murder, She Wrote. Still, her depiction of English teacher turned bestselling mystery writer turned amateur sleuth Jessica “J.B.” Fletcher made her a household name for millions of viewers. This is one of those shows you watch so much; you know the dialogue by heart, yet you still love to see it anyway.
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