[Scott remembers You Can't Do That On Television, and I was surprised to discover that I was persuaded here that it was pretty ahead of its time.]
Upon hearing the news that Les Lye, the actor who played the adult male roles on You Can't Do That On Televsion, passed away this weekend, I found myself watching old clips on youtube and reading up on the show online. In doing so, I came across the following quote from Justin Cammy, a former cast member who is now a professor at Smith College. Seeing as how many of us on the blog probably grew up with the show, I thought it might be worth posting/discussing:
"You Can't Do That on Television was the first post-modern children's program of my generation. It subverted all recognizable forms and deconstructed the pre-teen's understanding of such important institutions as the family, the school and the video arcade. When the schoolteacher did not know any better than to call Milton's masterpiece "Pair of Dice Lost", the program functioned as an ideological clarion call to future college students like you who would go on to demand the displacement of an ossified Western canon with more relevant investigations of low culture."
I would like to point out that I always felt, and watching old episodes confirmed, that the show was very much a junior Monty Python and that went much deeper than the Giliam-esque opening sequence. It also pre-figured a lot of what we see on Adult Swim; particularly the sort of 'Short Attention Span Theatre' of shows like Robot Chicken as, on YCDTOT, most of the sketches were only between 30 seconds to about a minute in length.