Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Pufnstuf & Other Stuff

1998, possibly first edition, from St. Martin's Press
David Martindale
Pufnstuf & Other Stuff: The Weird and Wonderful World of Sid & Marty Krofft
Bought new for $16.95
Worn paperback

With full cooperation of Sid and Marty (who are still alive in 2013 by the way), as well as many who worked on the shows, Martindale takes a fond look back at well, H.R. Pufnstuf and other stuff.  I'm using the Schwartziana tag, even though technically Sherwood Schwartz had nothing to do with the infamous Brady Bunch Variety Hour, because Martindale has some quotes from Maureen McCormick and Susan Olsen that were not in the earlier Brady books.  (Olsen would go on to write Love to Love You Bradys, which we'll get to in 2009.)

I grew up watching most of the Krofft shows, even the ones that originally aired when I was a baby or toddler, because they continued to air ad nauseam throughout the 1970s.  As with Schoolhouse Rock, that doesn't mean I remember them that well nowadays, although oddly enough the theme songs stick with me most.  ("Dr. Shrinker, Dr. Shrinker, he's a madman with an evil mind!")  Martindale is kind of enough to include all the lyrics to the kids' shows, as well as some mind-bending synopses.  I think Lidsville comes across as the weirdest, e.g. "When the Good Hats throw a birthday party for Li'l Ben, a pig, Hoo Doo believes that the reason that the Good Hats can afford a party is because they have not paid their taxes to him...."

Yes, Martindale addresses the question of whether the brothers, particularly weirdly and wildly imaginative Sid, did drugs.  The answer is, not during the creation of the shows.  Somehow, that's even more disturbing.

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