Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Podcast Tuesday: "It's Like Treasure Planet... But on an Island!"

Fonzie (right) duels with Blackbeard as Cupcake looks on.

When I was growing up, our entertainment options were relatively limited. There was no internet or streaming in the late '70s and early '80s. Home video and cable existed way back then (sort of), but nobody had them yet. At least not in our neighborhood. We really were dependent on the three big TV networks to see movies that were no longer in theaters. It was a big deal when Walt Disney would show its older films as part of The Wonderful World of Disney. I still have fond memories of making my way through the entire Herbie series starring Dean Jones and Buddy Hackett. My whole family watched those.

But even better than Herbie was Disney's Treasure Island (1950), based on Robert Louis Stevenson's 1883 novel of adventure on the high seas. So taken was I by this tale of pirates, parrots, and buried treasure that I had my parents read me the original novel as a bedtime story. I was particularly obsessed with the character of Ben Gunn, the bearded old hermit who has been marooned on an island for three years. For a while there, I would go around the house pretending to be Ben Gunn, imitating the voice of actor Geoffrey Wilkinson from the Disney film.

This week on These Days Are Ours: A Happy Days Podcast, I get to revisit my Treasure Island days. We're reviewing "Bye Bye Blackbeard," a pirate adventure in which Fonzie (Henry Winkler) and his pals travel back to the 1700s, assist a treasure-seeking maiden named Lucy Primrose, and match wits with the dastardly Blackbeard. There's even a Ben Gunn-type character named Uncle Horatio.

You can find out what we thought of "Bye Bye Blackbeard" by listening to the latest episode of our podcast. And guess what? You won't need a treasure map to find it because it's right here.