As our regular readers know, we love to reminisce about the late 80s and early 90s. Oh, the movies they had back then! Oh, the TV shows! Not like the crap that is on today! It's our childhood. Allow us to reminisce.
But here is the truth: that period was full of crap as well. Take "Growing Pains", a sitcom that spanned 1985 to 1992, smack in the middle of our supposed glory years of entertainment.
"Growing Pains" was the story of the Seavers: parents Jason (Alan Thicke, called by some the greatest Canadian actor of his generation), Maggie (Joanna Kerns), children Mike (Kirk Cameron), Carol (Tracey Gold), and Ben (Jeremy Miller). There was also Chrissy, who aged five years over one summer hiatus, but we're not concerned with her.
The Jew among them? No, not Kirk; he was a born-again Christian whose zealousness led to the firing of his TV girlfriend. The best we can do is Tracey, and even then it's a stretch. Her last name comes from her Jewish stepfather, but apparently it didn't go farther than that. (Tracey herself is Catholic.)
So why did "Growing Pains" suck, other than its lack of Jews? Well, it was super-corny, which we even realized at the time, and... it just wasn't funny. The "com" in "sitcom" stands for "comedy", after all, but there was none of that here. (Unless you find comedy in brothers calling their sister fat, which led to Tracey's life-threatening anorexia. Good job there, Cameron. We're sure Jesus approves.)
No, seriously, "Growing Pains" sucked. Now "The Wonder Years", on the other hand...