HEY YOU GUYS! Anyone remember "The Electric Company?"

Anyone remember this PBS show from the 70’s?

It was fan-freakin’-tastic! Everyday, my older brother and I would come home from school and watch Sesame Street (Somewhat interesting!), then Mr. Rogers (Mind-numbingly dull!), and finally, The Electric Company.

My wife still refers to Morgan Freeman as Easy Reader. And wasn’t Rita Moreno on it as well?

I haven’t seen reruns of it in twenty years. Damned shame.

(I’m turning 30 in a couple weeks, and I’m getting all nostalgic. Part of my stroll down memory lane was to watch “Logan’s Run” again. Eef. Don’t watch this right before your 30th birthday.)

Sure, though it always bugged me that Letterman always had exactly the right letter on his sweater when he needed it.

Talk about deus ex machina.

The reruns are on Noggin, which is the only reason I’m upgrading my digital cable in a couple of months.

I taped about six hours worth of episodes a couple of years ago, when there was a Noggin preview on Nick at Nite. Detective Fargo North, Easy Reader, Crank, Blue Beetle, the aforementioned Letterman, Spider-Man (“nobody knows who you aaaare!”) whose thought balloons expanded to fill the screen, and the lovely Jennifer of the Jungle, who was second only to Cindy Williams on my list of non-icky females.

Tom Lehrer wrote quite a few of the songs for the show, including “Silent E” and “L-Y”.

Joan Rivers was the narrator for the “Letterman” segments.

The nebbish blond nerdy guy with glasses (don’t remember his name) was Fritz the Cat’s voice.

Irene Cara and the girl who played Verucca Salt in “Willy Wonka” were both members of the Short Circus, the kid’s band on the show.

I loved Electric Company, and for the longest time people thought I was crazy when I mentioned it…


I used to watch this in grade school when it was snowing or we couldnt go outside for recess

The spiderman bit was my favorite part tho Why dont the rerun them anymore ?

Ive seen 20 year old sesame streets ran…

Tell me tho should kids shows be educational like the electric company or total fluff like some nick shows

i LOVED that show. I don’t remember watching Sesame Street or Mr. Rogers or any of those kinds of shows kids usually watched back then…but I remember The Electric Company. When I first saw Morgan Freeman in a regular ol’ acting role, I was like “whoa. That’s the Electric Company guy.” heehee.

The major memory about that show that sticks out in my mind is the Blue Beetle once sang “I would if I could, but I can’t, so I won’t. Please forgive me if i don’t! I hope I’m not misunderstood…I would if I could, but i can’t, etc”. Anyone else recall that, or am I crazy? (or both?)

Oh, I also watched 3-2-1- Contact all the time: “one-two-three-four-five six-seven-eight-nine-ten eleven tweeeeeelve”


Actually, that was a Sesame Street song.

I had the same reaction on Morgan Freeman, SuperLorie. And I was also young enough to have the same reaction with Rita Moreno…it was almost like seeing Big Bird doing Taxi Driver, or something.

I also remember the “would if I could” song, too…you’re not alone.

Our block of educational programming was roughly identical as Tucson’s in Louisville, MoebiusSesame Street was at 4 pm, Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood at 5, Electric Company at 5:30, and 3-2-1 Contact at 6.

Reading Rainbow? Sagwa??? Phooey.

Does anyone else also have a vague memory of Richard Pryor and/or Bill Cosby doing stuff on the Electric Company as well? I’ve seen them on Sesame Street too…go figure, both were Children’s Television Workshop properties.

I remember my jaw dropped when I chanced across PBS daytime a few years ago and heard a five year old talking about what job his dad did…how the whole family travelled across the country and performed for a living. I’m sitting there thinking, circus?

Nope. The kid was Ziggy Marley’s.

Sorry…I forgot to mention that the Marley segment was on Sesame Street.

Bill Cosby was an early member of the Electric Company cast. First two seasons, I believe.

ACK!!! maybe I did watch Sesame Street and blocked it all out except for that song. Then again, maybe that was a common counting song on Children’s Workshop shows. ??

The best web page I’ve found about The Electric Company is this one. Loads of good stuff.

But even with all the trivia listed on that page, I can’t believe no one mentioned “Spaghetti With A Spoon”.

And you should always give his full name: “Fargo North: Decoder.” hehe

I had the same reaction to Morgan Freeman when I saw him in dramatic roles. Same for Luis Avalos, when I would see him on network sitcoms.

But Rita Moreno I had seen and remembered from other shows (probably The Rockford Files since I watched it with my dad all the time). I actually had a little crush on her for a while, after I outgrew Sesame Street and my crush on Maria. I was so fickle back then.

I remember thinking it was a big deal when I would see Bill Cosby on there, in reruns. Bacause to me, at that age, the Cos was a huge star since he was on several different shows and he did lots of commercials.

I still remember parts of the “-tion song” to this day.

Tion, tion tion, tion
(Tion, tion tion, tion)
Never throw it in the water
Or you’ll get pollution.

Oh yeah, I remember Electric Company. The bit I always liked were the two people on the bike (one was Rita Moreno) where one would misremember what a word meant. It would go something like this:

I was feeding my cog…
Feeding your cog?
Yeah, the animal with four legs and it barks.
No, that’s a dog.
No, a dog is something you put in a fireplace.
No, that’s a log.
A log? A log can be as thick as pea soup.
No silly, that’s fog.
Fog is made out of peat.
A bog is made out of peat!
That’s a hog. . . .

Count me in as a fan. Really enjoyed this show when I was a kid (sandwiched between “Sesame Street” and “Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood”, all surrounded by episodes of “The Friendly Giant” (from Canada, I was in upstate NY) and “Ladybug’s Garden” (locally produced kid’s show).

Oh wow, thanks for the memories - sprawled on the floor in front of the tv before dinner, unwinding from school. Miss those days.

I liked the two faces in sillhouette (looking like the faces/vase optical illusion), speaking part of words



(Or was that Sesame Street? Dang, the memory is going.)

“… and what about Naomi?”

I was way too old to be watching Electric Company, but my youngest sister wasn’t, so I had an excuse. I loved the show - it cracked me up on a regular basis!

Woman runs into Fargo’s office, carrying a baby in a basket that was left on her doorstop. Basket had a cryptic note.

“Mr North, what should I do?”

Runs the note through his machine (I can’t remember what it was called) and displays the result onscreen:

“If he cries, give him the __ue __anket.”


I will confess it for the first time here - I had such a crush on Jennifer of the Jungle.

Great, and now I can’t get the theme song out of my head - “We’re gonna turn it onnnnn…”

Biggirl: Yes! That was brilliant. I still do that to my wife to irritate her.

Superlorie: The first dramatic role that I saw Morgan Freeman in after Electric Company was some movie with Christopher Reeve as a reporter. I think it was called “Street Smarts.” Freeman was a pimp. I found it disturbing.

Holy cow, I can’t believe people remember this show.

I’d like to thank everyone for refreshing my memory. I was still a tot when the Electric Company folded, so I really can’t remember much of the show. I was a huge fan of the Spider-Man segments, though, and always looked forward to Letterman. (Reading my parents’ TV guide as a kid, I could never figure out why he had his own show at 11:30 pm on CBS.)

winder, thanks for bringing up the “-tion” song. Oddly, it pops into my head every so often, and here I thought I was going nuts.