Rosanne Welch talks about “Why The Monkees Matter” with Jean Hopkins Power
Jean Powergirl takes the host reigns and welcomes her guest Rosanne Welch, PhD to the show! They’ll be discussing Roseanne’s book, “Why The Monkees Matter: Teenagers, Television and American Pop Culture.”
Jean: All right, so did you get..have you been able to talk personally to any of The Monkees.
Rosanne: I was able to…I did phone interviews with Micky Dolenz when I was working…originally I did an article about the writers of the show for… this is Written By Magazine which is the magazine of the Writers Guild and I’m on the board there so I sometimes recommend things I’d like to do and if other writers don’t want to take them, I do them. So I had done that article so that is when I interviewed Micky to talk about — to talk to an actor who understood how writers operated and how scripts work. In fact, I also among all the things I bring to the book signings I have an actual script from the show.
Jean: Which I love stuff like this. An actual script. An actual television script which to me is great. it is just a beautiful thing. In the day, this is how it was done. Notice the little brads. I don’t think you Millenials even know what a brad is, but anyway, this is awesome. This is like a relic for Monkees people. Imean you might need a bodyguard because I know some Monkees crazy people that would like tackle you for that, but I digress.
Rosanne: Seriously. In fact, one of the gentlemen I talked to, Coslough Johnson, talked about when he would go to the studio to hand in a freelance script, he would be mauled by teenagers who were hanging around the gates wanting any piece of memorabilia they could get. “I just want to deliver my work.”
Jean: First-degree relic. (Laugher)
A hit television show about a fictitious rock band, The Monkees (1966-1968) earned two Emmys–Outstanding Comedy Series and Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy. Capitalizing on the show’s success, the actual band formed by the actors, at their peak, sold more albums than The Beatles and The Rolling Stones combined and set the stage for other musical TV characters from The Partridge Family to Hannah Montana. In the late 1980s, the Monkees began a series of reunion tours that continued into their 50th anniversary.
This book tells the story of The Monkees and how the show changed television, introducing a new generation to the fourth-wall-breaking slapstick created by Laurel and Hardy and the Marx Brothers. Its creators contributed to the innovative film and television of 1970s with projects like Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Laugh-In and Welcome Back, Kotter. Immense profits from the show, its music and its merchandising funded the producers’ move into films such as Head, Easy Rider and Five Easy Pieces.
Rosanne Welch, PhD has written for television (Touched by an Angel, Picket Fences) and print (Three Ring Circus: How Real Couples Balance Marriage, Work and Kids and The Encyclopedia of Women in Aviation and Space). In the documentary world she has written and produced Bill Clinton and the Boys Nation Class of 1963 for ABC NEWS/Nightline and consulted on PBS’s A Prince Among Slaves, the story of a prince from West Africa who was enslaved in the 1780s, freed by order of President John Quincy Adams in the 1820s and returned to his homeland.