I liked the idea for this when Patti first mentioned it. I though about this one a lot since then. My favorite television series would depend on what time in life I was discussing. This one is childhood and there were only two possibilities for me. Since Patti had already claimed one of them, I had to go for the second.
I identified strongly with this show as the family dynamic was close to mine. Three siblings, a boy and two girls, a mother and father. In my case, the big difference in order was I was the oldest and there was no father in my case( he was an uncaring SOB that left every chance he got and for good when I was the eldest of three). But that’s a whole other story.
As I thought about this post, I realize that was what made these two a must watch. There was a caring father in each. I was surprised at how much I remembered as my mind cast back. Jim Anderson was the father. The kids were Betty, Bud, and Kitten. I didn’t remember the mother’s name and wondered why.
I came to the decision that it was likely because I had a mother who cared a great deal for my sisters and myself and sacrificed a great deal to raise three kids alone. My focus was on the element lacking in my family.
Our first television was a black and white, a gift from our step-father when we were very young. We’d never have been able to afford something like that otherwise. I must have been five or six and still recall him toting the set, a floor model, in by himself. It was shortly after that that he stopped coming around and didn’t reappear until I was eighteen. I didn’t know why until much later(which is a whole ‘nother story as well). They married the summer I graduated from high school, July 5th, and celebrated their forty-first anniversary this year.
Father Knows Best had what I was missing in my life and that drew me in more than anything else I believe. Jim Anderson was the caring father that fixed all problems in his children’s lives. Or smoothed them over at any rate. Something I had no idea what was like. Mom did a great job and still looks after her children, at eighty, probably more than we’d like to admit.
Other than Beaver, I don’t recall any other of that type of show when I was very young. I watched a great deal of television. Well, as much as you could with only three networks. Other than the two family “comedies,” it was mostly westerns for me.