The Lost Generation

Every once in awhile, I’ll mention the children’s show, Lidsville, which ran from 1971-1973. I’ve never met anyone who remembers it. When I describe it, they look at me like I’m high. Lidsville was a Sid and Mary Krofft show, joining the reality based H.R. Pufnstuf, and The Bugaloos. The plot involved a teenager who wanders into a giant hat (yes, it’s odd) and falls into a land filled with living hats. The hat people also lived in hats. Too add to the bizarre story, Charles Nelson Reilly was the villain — not Charles Nelson Reilly the person, but the character he played. I think Lidsville was slang for the marijuana term “lid.” Why this was aimed at pre-teens is beyond me.

I recall watching Lidsville, very concerned that the main character, Mark, wouldn't get home. I didn’t question the symbolism or meaning of the hat world. It seemed perfectly sane. In the end Mark didn’t escape Lidsville and return to the normal world. I thought about this quite a bit growing up. It was like Gilligan’s Island before they were rescued in the tragic sequels. These loose ends, these lost souls, damaged my generation and caused severe emotional trauma.


Who doesn’t love the title sequence from Mister Magoo? Little did we know as small children we were watching the work of design hero Alvin Lustig. For those living under a rock, Mister Magoo was a television cartoon character voiced by Jim Backus (Mr. Howell on Gilligan’s Island).  The cartoon followed the practically blind Magoo’s misadventures. Obviously many a hi-jinx occurred with driving and cases of mistaken identity. United Productions of America, UPA, produced Mr. Magoo. Lustig designed their logo also. My favorite moment: the roller coaster near miss. I suggest we stop yelling, “mother@#%*!^,” and yell “Road hog,” when someone cuts you off. Or at least, I should.