That 70s Show discussion thread

This show is IMO one of the best shows I’ve watched in reruns on TV. My brother introduced me to it the year before last. Part of the fascination of it it is because my parents and high-school teachers were teenagers in the 70s and it kind of gives me a feeling of “looking into” an exaggerated version of life for some teenagers in Western countries in the 1970s.

So this is a thread along the lines of mysagas thread about That 70s Show.

First of, does anyone have any wild theories about Fez’s nationality?

EDIT to title: discussion.

To post: off

I always loved That 70’s Show. A lot of credit goes to Topher Grace and Kurtwood Smith for having such great chemistry together – Red Foreman reminds me a bit of my dad, a blue collar, take no crap WWII vet, though my dad didn’t threaten to put his boot in my ass every day. The other actors were really good as well, Debra Jo Rupp, Don Stark, Wilmer Valderrama, and Danny Masterson were all really solid in their roles. I always couldn’t stand Jackie and Mila Kunis did such a good job (imo) with the character that I would associate her with her character too closely until finally I had moment where I realized that she really is a good actress and that’s just her character. Kutcher was fine as a dumbass Kelso and few things on this earth are hotter than red headed Laura Prepron.

I think the only two real weak links were Midge and Laurie Forman. They weren’t bad but I thought the two characters strained credibility. Plus there was the whole bit of Laurie being recast and then the original actress coming back again. The leaving again. Clearly they were having issues with Lisa Robin Kelly and it’s unfortunate that she died last year.

The later years were not as strong and I started to notice the scenes seemed to take “shotcuts” – they would introduce the conflict, have a few jokes, then jump to the cutscene and on to the next scene. They didn’t really have full conversations. It’s a convention of the sitcom and a necessity with an ensemble cast, but I thought it got more noticeable later on. Grace leaving put a strain on the show I think, but him coming back at the end was a nice capper.

As far as Fez, I just bought into the bit where you’re not supposed to know what nationality he actually is. He seemed Latino for the most part, but there was also a lot of goofy stuff thrown in that wouldn’t fit that either.

it’s an epic show. it’s about teenage years so anyone can relate to that. its about the bonds between close friends so anyone can relate to that. being set in the 70’s is cool but that is just window dressing really.

I see Kurtwood Smith is coming back on tv in Resurrection on ABC this coming Sunday.

The first season of That 70s Show is a tiny little masterpiece. Funny, emotional, awkward, and honest. Really captures something about being a bored, confused, horny teenager.

The next few seasons lost the magic, but it was a perfectly competant, funny sitcom. The last seasons or two, though, were garbage.

Robert163: Without starting a fight, I would say that being set in the '70s was a lot more than just window dressing. If you’ll recall “That '80s Show,” it was basically the same show but set in the Reagan years and it went into the toilet, but fast. I can’t see the same thing working as “That '60s Show,” either. I think they grabbed the period in history where we were recovering from Viet Nam, but hadn’t all gone off to be MBAs yet. A period of time like that can be very experimental and very mental, as well, and they captured that wonderfully. Jerkwater sociology lecture over :D.

What bugs me is Wilmer V’s character is named FES–Foreign Exchange Student. His dialect makes it sound like the hat. Hell, IMdB isn’t even consistent in their own listing.

Can you imagine what the Wisconsin exchange student (think his name was WES?) that got sent to Fes’s home country went through? :eek:

Well…, for all your folks who like it because your parents were teens back in the 70’s:
I say: "buzz off!!! The show wasn’t meant for you! :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

The original target audience was those of us who actually were teens back in the 70’s.

No–you are wrong…The date is important.
That’s why they named it “That 70’s show”.(The network could have called it something more general, like “Happy Days in high school” or “The Eric and Donna show”, for example)

I think the name was a deliberate attempt to attract an older audience—people who would find it not only funny, but also nostalgic, because they had actually been there in the 70’s.
Do I have a cite? well,…no!
But I do have a bit of evidence --they used a unique plot device.
In every episode of the first season, there was a little break and a cut to a piece of nostalgia.For about 2 minutes ,the screen would fade to black-and-white* and the actors would re-enact a scene that would be very familiar to anybody who had lived through the 1970’s.
The scene might be a re-enactment of a popular show of the 70’s, including the now-forgotten theme music. Or, even funnier, the scene might be a re-enactment of a typical “Educational movie” of the type that a high school student would have been forced to watch in the 70’s.

They only did this, I think, for the first season. Afterwards, they dropped it. My guess is that they watched the ratings and checked the demographics—and found that the audience was younger than what they had expected.So they started writing more for today’s teens, and not their parents–and then the show became just another sit-com.

*(Remember,back in the 70’s, people were used to watching in black and white. Many people had color, but half the programs being broadcast (movies, old re-runs,etc) were in black and white

Gary Owens: “That’s right, Bob. Donna’s…“Open For Business.” And excuse me, but I’m next.”


I always felt that the first season was set in the 70’s but the following seasons were about the 70’s. I’m not sure how to describe it better than that. Yes, they had the slang, the hairstyles and the clothes from that era, but the setting just didn’t feel real. Kind of like when Happy Days changed from a show set in the 50’s to a show about the 50’s but people had 80’s hair. (I’m looking at you, Chachi Arcola!) Speaking of which, why did everybody pick on Kelso for his “Fonzie jacket”? Back in the 70’s everybody loved the Fonz! That didn’t strike me as quite right.

My memories may be off a bit. I was a kid in the 70’s, my teen years were the 80’s.

I think it’s because Kelso just can’t pull off the look he wants (a Brando-ish kind of look).

Yep. I graduated from high school in 1977. Not in Wisconsin, not even close, but I was still amazed at how right they got the look. The clothes, the hair, all of it.

It was almost embarassing – I dressed exactly like Eric Forman.

I did like the show. Like all sitcoms, it started to fall apart after a couple of years, but for the first two years, it was great. Wonderfully written and acted (for the most part).

Remember that Happy Days officially jumped the shark in the fall of 1977. I remember a friend got me a poster of the Fonz for my birthday in early 1977 (I think), and I thought “wtf dude, this isn’t cool any more.” I dutifully put it up on the wall in the basement, though, and kept my mouth shut.

I really didn’t watch That 70’s Show that much, but it is important that it was set in the middle of the country. Setting it in NYC or LA would not have made sense. Growing up in Minnesota, I know that the culture from the coasts trickled in very slowly.

I’m not threadshitting, but I disagree. I WAS a Wisconsin teenager in the late 70’s, and I thought the show got a lot of it wrong. I tried to watch, but gave up early because of the ‘errors’, so take my opinion for what it’s worth. I guess it is like doctors watching doctor shows, etc.

Now, on the other hand, Dazed and Confused was so spot on to my high school experience* that, when I watched it with a HS friend, we both ‘recognized’ classmates in the movie.

*except the pot smoking. In the movie, EVERYONE smoked, and it wasn’t universal in my school

Neither Midge nor Laurie Foreman were over the top. Lisa Robin Kelly nailed her part far better than any other actor on the show. I knew women exactly like that. In fact, I knew all those people. I was Eric Foreman, minus the hot Donna and the dobbie habit.

So what exactly was innacurate about it? I’d love to know :slight_smile:

Having grown up in Wisconsin (although I was a teen in the early 80’s) they missed how friggin’ cold it is for half the year. :smiley:

Oh crap, spelling mistake.


Isn’t the cold why they were going to the ski lodge in Season 1?

No, they were going there to smoke weed, nail the girls and avoid adults. Like every other episode. PLEASE TRY TO KEEP UP! :smiley: Oh, you’re the OP. :smack: