Jewish World Review May 22, 2002 / 11 Sivan, 5762

Ian Shoales

Ian Shoales
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Consumer Reports

We baby boomers used to rule the roost | Let's see. We had a "Carol Burnett Show" reunion in April. Even though it was mostly blooper clips, it was nice to see the gang together again-- especially Tim Conway, one of the unsung comic geniuses of our time.

We also had a "Honeymooners" special, a "Cosby Show" reunion, A "Mary Tyler Moore"reunion, and an "LA Law" get-together, not to mention Angela Lansbury's guest appearance on "Touched By an Angel."

I know, I know. Ratings grabbers. Network anniversaries. But still, why this sudden hug by the networks of the, shall we say, older demographic? After all, when MURDER SHE WROTE was yanked off the air, it still commanded high ratings. The trouble was, those high ratings were with this disdained older demographic, who, I gather, just don't buy the weight loss products, power sodas, and fluff building shampoos that keep the global economy perky and network programs on the air.

So why now?

Well, maybe it's because of Ozzy Osbourne. The former Avatar of Evil has now become America's favorite befuddled Dad. He was even invited to Washington, D.C., where he was fawned over by the media so much, that Lynne Cheney bestirred herself to frown upon it. I believe that means you've arrived.

So, in my opinion, we now have an interface between the old folks who like nothing better than to iron and put food by while watching reruns of geriatric mysteries and black and white sitcoms during the day time-- and their grandchildren, who like nothing better than-- well, I don't know what they like, aside from Buffy, Blink 182, and MTV.

So what about MY generation? Man, we baby boomers used to rule the roost. But did anybody ask me about Ozzy? Does anybody care if I watch MTV or not? The bloom has come off the boomer rose.

JWR contributor Ian Shoales is the author of, among others, Not Wet Yet: An Anthology of Commentary. Comment by clicking here.


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© 2001, Ian Shoales