30 years ago today the television show Saved by the Bell aired its first episode 1. This will come to no surprise from people that know me but I’m kind of obsessed with Saved by the Bell.
I was born in 1983, so I was six when the show first aired. A show revolving around High School kids doesn’t seem like a show a six year old would be interested in, but I had two older sisters that also watched the show. That being said, I think I did most of my SBTB watching on weekday mornings and afternoons. In fact, I didn’t watch SBTB in its normal time slot, on Saturday mornings, until the last season or two. Superstations TBS and WGN used to air back to back episodes before and after school. Local station, KPLR channel 11, also aired back to back episodes in the afternoon, so I could potentially watch six episodes in a single day. I was in heaven.
This does not include the original show Saved by the Bell was spun off from, Good Morning Miss Bliss, which aired in July of 1987 ↵
When I was a kid one of my favorite times of the year was New Years Day because the annual tradition of a The Twilight Zone marathon. TTZ is my favorite television show of all time. When it was announced that Jordan Peele, writer and director of the massively popular Get Out, would be bringing the series back I was excited to say the least. It seemed to me, based on all the interviews that I read, that Peele has a lot of admiration and respect for the original series. I felt that he could come out with a version of the show that was as close to the original as possible.
Conan O’Brien is in the process of bringing his entire catalog of interviews, stand-up performances, sketches, and remote segments online. Over a year ago Team Coco announced that they were going to put all 25 years of Late Night With Conan O’Brien clips online and the first phase is rolling out now.
Over the past few years we’ve entered into the world of subscription services for entertainment, among other things. It started out with a few, but media companies have found the benefits of having their own streaming services outweigh selling their content to an existing service. At least, that’s what they think now, but what happens when people get subscription fatigue? It’s happening to me. Let me start by first listing all the entertainment subscriptions that I currently pay for.
I was looking for something to watch on Netflix over the weekend and found a show from Conan O’Brien entitled Conan Without Borders. I’ve been a fan of Conan for years. He quickly became my favorite late night talk show host and I was excited when he took over The Tonight Show. I don’t have to tell you how that ended, but the whole experience allowed me to have some dealings indirectly with Conan and his people (I once owned the domain teamcoco.com and sold it to him after he left The Tonight Show).
Conan Without Borders doesn’t have any new footage, that I can tell, but is instead a re-packaging of Conan’s travel segments from his talk show. If you’ve not watched Conan before, oftentimes he goes to another city for several days (if he’s filming the show in said city, then he’ll usually stay the whole week) and each night they will air an 8-10 minute segment of Conan interacting with the people and places of that city. What this show does is takes each of those 8-10 minute segments and combines them into a single episode. There are 6 episodes in the first “season” and he visits Cuba, Korea, Mexico, Israel, Haiti, and Italy.
The idea of the show is pretty smart. It can potentially open up Conan to more viewers who don’t watch his late night show. It also shows Conan at what I think is his best. In these segments he is his typical goofy self, but in many of these places he really shows his human side and there are moments of the show that are quite touching (in the Haiti, Mexico, and Israel episodes for example). He’s having real conversations with real people about real things. They are not the normal 6 minute canned promo interviews that plague late night talk shows. Each episode was really enjoyable, though I think Haiti and Israel were probably my favorite. Those two I think were really impactful, especially in the current ‘America-First’ political climate.
If you are a fan of Conan or travel shows, or both, I suggest you give it a watch. Some of the segments you may have seen before if you are a regular viewer of Conan, but the segments are so good they hold up in repeated viewings.