Rosanne Welch, PhD, Author of Why The Monkees Matter, presents “How The Monkees Changed Television” at a Cal State Fullerton Lunch Lecture on May 8, 2018.
In this talk, she shows how The Monkees, and specifically their presence on television, set the stage for large changes to come in the late 1960s.
Back in the day — I just mentioned the war — they did have many moments where they referenced the war — the war on poverty — and President Lyndon Johnson and they mentioned particularly — there was a great episode where they were playing dominoes and they dropped all the dominoes and then Davy Jones said to Peter Tork “what do you call this game?” and Peter Tork said “Southeast Asia” and nobody cut that, right, because nobody who is a censor at the network understood what it meant which is pretty shocking if you ask me.
This is Dr. Timothy Leary who was famous back in the day for dropping LSD and whatnot and taking experiments with the psyche and he was watching the program and defining it and recognizing that it was far deeper than anyone else had given it the thought before. So already in the 60s people in the know knew that this was something different and worth paying attention to.
Want to use “Why The Monkees Matter” in your classroom?
About Rosanne Welch, PhD
Rosanne Welch, PhD is a writer, producer and university professor with credits that include Beverly Hills 90210, Picket Fences, Touched by an Angel and ABC NEWS/Nightline. Other books include Why The Monkees Matter: Teenagers, Television and American Pop Culture (McFarland, 2017) and Women in American History: A Social, Political, and Cultural Encyclopedia and Document Collection (ABC-CLIO, 2017), named to the 2018 Outstanding References Sources List, by the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA), a division of the American Library Association. Welch has also published chapters in Torchwood Declassified: Investigating Mainstream Cult Television (I.B.Tauris) and The American Civil War on Film and TV: Blue and Gray in Black and White and Color (Lexington Books, 2018) and essays in Doctor Who and Race: An Anthology and Outside In Makes it So, and Outside in Boldly Goes (both edited by Robert Smith). By day she teaches courses on the history of screenwriting and on television writing for the Stephens College MFA in Screenwriting programs. Her talk “The Importance of Having a Female Voice in the Room” at the 2016 TEDxCPP is available on YouTube.