By Walter Metz
The vintage scenario comedy Bewitched chronicled the typical lives of Samantha, a witch, and Darrin Stephens, her mortal husband, dramatizing the often-humorous problems attributable to their "mixed marriage." for a lot of its eight-year run, Bewitched loved powerful attractiveness due to its huge charm. A parade of magical characters, animals, lighting tricks, and gimmickry used to painting witchcraft ensured that the sequence appealed strongly to kids, whereas its household tensions, feminist undertones, and tricks at homosexual and lesbian tradition grabbed the eye of grownup audience. Bewitched additionally participated in business thoughts, just like the shift from black-and-white to paint tv creation, and located itself stuck within the political shift from Lyndon Johnson's nice Society to Richard Nixon's staunch conservatism. With all of those elements in brain, Walter Metz considers the sequence an immense touchstone in Nineteen Sixties and Nineteen Seventies culture.
prior educational feedback on Bewitched purely considers a handful of episodes. This publication considers the Bewitched sequence as a complete, demonstrating that the express can glance very varied based upon which of its episodes are being tested. Metz attracts numerous interlocking issues from the sequence, together with the political identification conflicts that come up from the Stephenses' marriage, the importance of background raised by means of characters popping out and in of the prior, the postwar surveillance tradition represented via the phobia of discovery of Samantha's mystery, and the show's self-reflexive stance towards tv itself. moreover, Metz situates Bewitched in tv heritage, studying the ways in which its creation options, storylines, and characters either borrowed from the prior and contributed their very own thoughts to the medium.
A cult favourite that maintains to air frequently greater than 40 years after it first premiered, Bewitched has claimed a favourite position in tv background. students of movie and tv reviews, in addition to fanatics of the exhibit, will relish Metz's cautious examine the show's attraction and the intense matters raised by means of this loved and deceptively easy sitcom.
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Extra resources for Bewitched
Endora is incensed that Tabitha is not eligible for the toy chest prize because of Darrin’s involvement with the show and magically makes sure that Tabitha wins the prize anyway. She furthermore bewitches the clown himself so that he insists on having Tabitha at the next taping of the show so he can dote on his “cute little doll” on the air. When the client finds out that Tabitha is Darrin’s child, he is furious and threatens to pull the account. Sam quickly solves the crisis when she zaps up a doll that looks identical to Tabitha, and tells the client that Ho Ho’s antics were all a gag to produce interest in a new doll for the toy company.
Far from shifting the series’ emphasis toward heterosexual domestic concerns, as might be expected, the pregnancy and postpartum episodes of . . Bewitched are concerned with marginalizing and trivializing male characters while (re)establishing a network of supportive women around the mother-to-be. (47) Bewitched borrowed a number of story ideas from fa- Contextualizing Bewitched 1958–62; NBC, 1955–58; ABC, 1962–63) and My Three Sons (ABC, 1960–65; CBS, 1965–72) in that period, and The Simpsons (FOX, 1989–present) in ours—both of these shows dealt with the pregnancies of the show’s main characters and the birth of their children.
Even the critics who appreciate the show support their analyses with no more than a few episodes, perhaps unwittingly accepting the standard bias against the very 1960s telefilm sitcoms that they are working to reevaluate: that is, once you have seen a few episodes of a 1960s telefilm sitcom, you have seen them all. Historically, there are reasons for this lack of attention to the complete runs of television series. More so than film, television has been considered a disposable artifact. The Museum of Broadcasting is lucky if it has a few episodes of any given TV show, while carefully restored VHS and DVD copies of a large number of major directors’ entire oeuvres are readily available for home viewing.