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papyrusbeetle

the disturbing IDEAL world of "Leave it to Beaver" (classic tv!)

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One of the fun things about broadcast channels is that they are showing super-classic tv-shows all the time. "Lone Ranger", "Perry Mason", "Roy Rogers", "Lassie".

 

But seeing "Leave it to Beaver" on a new digital tv-screen is kind of a weird experience.

I was never a RABID fan (not like I was about "Bewitched"), so maybe I just never paid attention to this show.

But WOW, is their house exquisite. I mean, every single darned detail of furniture, wall - design, soft-goods, etc. etc. It's like a long, extended "life is perfect in the American home" AD. I mean by today's standards, too.

One off-beat accessory for today is the "Aunt Jemima" cooky jar, but everything else in Beaver's house could thrill shoppers right now.

Is this how we won the "cold war"?

Showing the rest of the world a "perfect" existence in the USA?
No dust, dirt, poverty, messy pets, just a home in HEAVEN?

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I don't think too many people today would be thrilled by Ward's

small den TV set, or by the compact car that he squeezed his

family of four into. But yes, the (second) house is pretty neat.

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One of the fun things about broadcast channels is that they are showing super-classic tv-shows all the time. "Lone Ranger", "Perry Mason", "Roy Rogers", "Lassie".

 

But seeing "Leave it to Beaver" on a new digital tv-screen is kind of a weird experience.

I was never a RABID fan (not like I was about "Bewitched"), so maybe I just never paid attention to this show.

But WOW, is their house exquisite. I mean, every single darned detail of furniture, wall - design, soft-goods, etc. etc. It's like a long, extended "life is perfect in the American home" AD. I mean by today's standards, too.

One off-beat accessory for today is the "Aunt Jemima" cooky jar, but everything else in Beaver's house could thrill shoppers right now.

Is this how we won the "cold war"?

Showing the rest of the world a "perfect" existence in the USA?

No dust, dirt, poverty, messy pets, just a home in HEAVEN?

 

I had 2 aunts that kept house THAT clean! (heaven forbid as a child, I did anything messy)

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Seems to me that the OP is overthinking things a bit.

 

It was just a TV show.

 

Does his focus on "Beaver" indicate he was OK with OTHER TV fare?

 

Like, did he think THE BEVERLY HILLBILLIES were an accurate representation of late 20th century "low income" Southerners? 

 

Or that THE REAL McCOYS were what ALL West Virginia farmers that moved to California were like?

 

Incidentally, I too had an Aunt much like the ones HAM had.

 

And we had a washing machine like the one in that ad in our basement when I ws a kid.

 

The only thing I found "disturbing" about "Leave It to Beaver" was how WELL the "Beav" and his older brother got along compared to how me and MY older brother did at that point in our lives.  ;)

 

 

Sepiatone

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It's tough to be critical of a show which gave us classic lines such as "Nice play, Shakespeare," and "Ward, don't you think you were a little hard on the Beaver last night?"

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I had a friend who used to keep her apartment so spotless it almost looked un-lived in. It was weird, not a crease in the furniture, the magazines neatly stacked on top of one another, so perfect in appearance that they looked as though they hadn't been read. I was almost afraid to sit in one of her chairs for fear that it wouldn't still look perfect when I stood up.

 

It was very unexpected for me since my friend was a very down-to-earth type, always joking around and poking fun at herself. In fact she did "joke" once about being on her hands and knees scrubbing the kitchen floor. I didn't realize until I went to her place and saw that kitchen floor that she must have been telling me the truth.

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What's disturbing??

 

That a stay-at-home mom in the 50's kept a tidy house?

Come to think of it, what would be more disturbing is a stay at home Mom who didn't  keep a tidy house.  Regardless of the decade.

 

 

Sepiatone

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Seems to me that the OP is overthinking things a bit.

 

It was just a TV show.

 

Does his focus on "Beaver" indicate he was OK with OTHER TV fare?

 

Like, did he think THE BEVERLY HILLBILLIES were an accurate representation of late 20th century "low income" Southerners? 

 

Or that THE REAL McCOYS were what ALL West Virginia farmers that moved to California were like?

 

Incidentally, I too had an Aunt much like the ones HAM had.

 

And we had a washing machine like the one in that ad in our basement when I ws a kid.

 

The only thing I found "disturbing" about "Leave It to Beaver" was how WELL the "Beav" and his older brother got along compared to how me and MY older brother did at that point in our lives.  ;)

 

 

Sepiatone

 

 

Look at the prices and adjust for inflation. The automatic washer ALONE in today's money was around $2,268.00! 

One can get a washer/dryer bundle  today for around $700.00.

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What's with this stay-at-home mom jargon - - that must come from the way people talk nowadays.

 

Women who were wives and mothers in the 1950s were called Housewives, plain and simple.

 

Women did not work for the most part, Unless the family really needed money and/ or the mother was in one of those traditional jobs, such as nurse, teacher, department store clerk, secretary or librarian.

 

Married women were called Housewives.

 

 

 

SEPIA--

 

BTW-- I had an older brother. Ditto on your sibling comment. But our lifestyle in those days was very similar to My Three Sons in terms of finding order in a lot of fun and chaos, which included the dogs, of course. LOL

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What's with this stay-at-home mom jargon - - that must come from the way people talk nowadays.

 

Women who were wives and mothers in the 1950s were called Housewives, plain and simple.

 

Women did not work for the most part, Unless the family really needed money and/ or the mother was in one of those traditional jobs, such as nurse, teacher, department store clerk, secretary or librarian.

 

Married women were called Housewives.

 

 

 

SEPIA--

 

BTW-- I had an older brother. Ditto on your sibling comment. But our lifestyle in those days was very similar to My Three Sons in terms of finding order in a lot of fun and chaos, which included the dogs, of course. LOL

ours was more like The Wonder Years only my father was a bit more proactive in the mean department...

 

he didn't just sit there at the dinner table with a mean scowl on his face.

 

he was like the evil captain kirk created by the transporter malfunction. :lol:

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I remember some friends of my parents who were called aunts,

though they actually weren't. They lived in an old spooky house

on the top of a hilly street. They had a huge table in the living

room and a kitchen with a large stone enclosed fireplace that

looked like something out of the Addams family. And narrow

front windows that came within six inches or so of the floor. Once

I went upstairs to watch TV and I saw the shadow of a rat crawling

along the floor. I heard that someone filmed a low budget horror 

flick there. It certainly would have fit.

 

I remember the episode where Beav had to write a book report on

The Three Musketeers. Instead of reading the book, he watched the

Ritz Brothers version on TV and wrote that up. Miss Landers was not

amused. 

 

The Enemaw Within.

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Come to think of it, what would be more disturbing is a stay at home Mom who didn't  keep a tidy house.  Regardless of the decade.

 

 

Sepiatone

Many of the housewives of the time also had maids.  Even those that did not have regular jobs.

All the TV shows of the period were highly fictionalized and presented a perfect image.  

Remember that many of these shows were sponsored by houshold products and appliances, so they had to show things perfectly.

Don't forget, it was a TV set, not a real house to begin with.  Just as the car they showed in some episodes did not have a rear window so you could see Wally and the Beav clearly.

I can just see the parents on any show discussing the following:  Wally was picked up for drunk driving and is at the local jail; Beaver took the car for a joy ride and ran over a neighbor's child; 15 year old Suzie is pregnant; Kathy is injecting herion; Miss Landers was caught doing it with the Beaver; etc.

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ours was more like The Wonder Years only my father was a bit more proactive in the mean department...

 

he didn't just sit there at the dinner table with a mean scowl on his face.

 

he was like the evil captain kirk created by the transporter malfunction. :lol:

 

 

 

In the old days (baby boom gen and before), children better not even think of disrespecting their fathers! The one's sent to bed without supper were the lucky ones.

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What's with this stay-at-home mom jargon - - that must come from the way people talk nowadays.

 

Women who were wives and mothers in the 1950s were called Housewives, plain and simple.

 

Women did not work for the most part, Unless the family really needed money

 

No idea what you're talking about. My mom worked in a factory - assembly line work - as did most of the women in my sizeable family and general neighborhood. Yes, housewife was one term we would hear - especially on TV commercials - but stay-at-home mom was far more accurate as a societal description.

 

I guess you grew up in an affluent community. I grew up in a working class environment, so that might explain the difference in the expressions we use.

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I remember the episode where Beav had to write a book report on The Three Musketeers. Instead of reading the book, he watched the Ritz Brothers version on TV and wrote that up. Miss Landers was not amused. 

 

Know what? Even at 7 years old I wanted to **** Miss Landers.

 

I was a very sexual child.

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Many of the housewives of the time also had maids.  Even those that did not have regular jobs.

 

:lol:

Yeah, right!

 

In Beverly Hills maybe.

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I don't recall hearing the term "stay-at-home mom" until the 1990's, when that became a position out of the norm. By then, many if not most households had two working parents (if there were two). They were always called housewives around here until then, and it was what was "expected". And I grew up very low middle class, if not skating closer to poor. And my mother did work outside of the home. My father was a machinist that made decent money, but with 3 kids and bills to pay, my mother worked, too, as a school teacher.

 

Perhaps stay-at-home mom was more common in Canada back in the day than it was here.

 

And the maid at my house was my sisters and I.

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Come to think of it, what would be more disturbing is a stay at home Mom who didn't  keep a tidy house.  Regardless of the decade.

 

I've known several of those.

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Perhaps stay-at-home mom was more common in Canada back in the day than it was here.

 

Well, we do tend to see things more astutely than Americans do.

 

Incidentally - are you saying that women who went to work everyday were still called "housewives" just like women who stayed at home and kept house?

 

How fair.

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Many of the housewives of the time also had maids. Even those that did not have regular jobs.

All the TV shows of the period were highly fictionalized and presented a perfect image.

Remember that many of these shows were sponsored by houshold products and appliances, so they had to show things perfectly.

Don't forget, it was a TV set, not a real house to begin with. Just as the car they showed in some episodes did not have a rear window so you could see Wally and the Beav clearly.

I can just see the parents on any show discussing the following: Wally was picked up for drunk driving and is at the local jail; Beaver took the car for a joy ride and ran over a neighbor's child; 15 year old Suzie is pregnant; Kathy is injecting herion; Miss Landers was caught doing it with the Beaver; etc.

No idea what you're talking about. My mom worked in a factory - assembly line work - as did most of the women in my sizeable family and general neighborhood. Yes, housewife was one term we would hear - especially on TV commercials - but stay-at-home mom was far more accurate as a societal description.

 

I guess you grew up in an affluent community. I grew up in a working class environment, so that might explain the difference in the expressions we use.

 

We were not rich or affluent-- we were just middle class. And I can't remember any of my friends' mothers who were Housewives ever having any maids, whatsoever! If there was going to be something special going on, like a big party, then all of the housewives would get together and help each other.

 

The housewives did all the work in the home and only the-- what we would call

affluent or rich people had Maids.

 

I went to public school with people of all classes and people of different races.

 

I can recall some friends who you might say their parents were poor, but the mother did not work because she had so many children to take care of at home.

 

For the most part, the majority of children in elementary school and Junior High School went home for lunch because their mothers were at home to fix their lunch.

 

The few who had mothers who worked - - who worked primarily as secretaries or School teachers, took their lunch. It wasn't unusual for a school teacher to have her children there in the school and they all ate lunch together.

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Well, we do tend to see things more astutely than Americans do.

 

Incidentally - are you saying that women who went to work everyday were still called "housewives" just like women who stayed at home and kept house?

 

How fair.

 

No, they weren't. Women who worked were called wives, moms, women or broads, depending on the conversation.

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No, they weren't. Women who worked were called wives, moms, women or broads, depending on the conversation.

Which reminds me of some lyrics that Frank Sinatra used to sing--

 

" She won't dish the dirt with the rest of the broads, that's why the Lady is a Tramp."

 

Sinatra had a way of changing lyrics whenever he felt like it. And somehow they fit just great. LOL

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