Web This Site

Monday, February 20, 2006

Missing Mayberry

August 4, 2004

I miss Mayberry.

I crave my dose of Andy, Barney, Opie, and Aunt Bee, like Otis craves his whiskey.

There. I said it. So let the ridiculing begin.

The Andy Griffith Show may not be preferred viewing for most sophisticated Generation-X TV critics. But for me, it’s just about perfect.

How can you not love a gap-toothed guitar-playing sheriff, a whimsical deputy with a passion for firearms, and a moral lesson in each episode?

Now before you fire off the e-mails or phone calls declaring me antiquated and out-of-touch, hear me out. I realize it’s probably not hip or cool for someone my age to watch the motley crew of Mayberry misfits. But frankly, I don’t care. I’m fine with it. Really. Some may call this classic show old-fashioned, simplistic and corny. I call it quality TV.

Few shows make me laugh out loud anymore. And Andy and the gang never let me down. A recent rerun left me chuckling when an escaped convict got the drop on Deputy Barney Fife. Sheriff Andy found the fumbling Fife tied up and inquired how it happened.

“Does he have a gun,” Andy asked. “He does now,” Barney said, sheepishly. It’s not exactly Law and Order, but it sure is fun.

The small-town charm of Mayberry is irresistible. The characters use quaint terms like “picture show” and “hanker down.” They gossip at Floyd’s barber shop. They go fishing at the town fishing hole, eat ice cream at the soda shop, and go to dances on Saturday night.

There’s a sense of family among the Mayberry folks that you don’t see in reality. In short, they’re tighter than Aunt Bee’s hair bun. I’m grateful this show was created decades ago. It wouldn’t stand a chance in today’s reality-TV infested world.

For those who can’t get enough of the show, I stumbled across the Web site www.mayberry.com. It’s the home of The Andy Griffith Show Rerun Watchers Club. The site has all kinds of fun Mayberry sections, including an episode guide, quotes, and links to cast Web sites. You can even send an electronic postcard from Goober.

In today’s fast-paced world of cell phones, terror threats, and war, I find myself searching, perhaps in vain, for a little bit of Mayberry. It’s a place where crime is nonexistent, fathers talk to their sons and the harshest four-letter word you’ll hear is “darn.”

It’s enough to make me want to live there. Or at least subscribe to TV Land.

Catch The Andy Griffith Show in reruns weeknights on TV Land at 6:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Originally published 8/4/04 in The Exponent Telegram newspaper.


Copyright 2007 Tube Talk