Does anyone remember watching a black and white TV? I do. My dad had this TV that quite literally took a minute to warm up before it showed its black and white view of the world.
I remember seeing the old Spiderman cartoons. You know, the one that started airing in the late 1960s but probably reran infinitum during the 1970s. I remember when I saw it on TV. A Color TV.
The show opens with the phrase “In Color.” Naive me, I thought when I saw it on my dad’s Black and White TV, it would say “In Black and White” instead. That seemed perfectly rational to my little mind.
Needless to say I found it a bit disconcerting that it said “In Color” but showed it in Black and White.
My kids, of course, have never watched a black and white TV. Since we’ve gone all digital, they won’t ever see one. They might see something in Black and White if they watch a really old movie. Or some more recent television program that goes Black and White for effect.
There is something to be said for watching a program in black and white on a crappy-ass 14 inch TV with a mono speaker on an antenna. You got some sort of picture, if you were lucky, but your mind had to fill in a lot of the details. Certainly with the animation of the day, you had to.
These days, programs are in full 1080p with Dolby 5.1 digital surround sound. You can see every pimple and wrinkle on the actors face–and let’s face it, they’re all actors. Even the newscasters. Especially the newscasters. It leaves little to the imagination.
And, quite honestly, I think we’re worse off for it.