Here's a thread likely to send some classic TV fans running for the torches, but remember it's purely subjective opinion and just for fun. You watched a show when it was originally on. Maybe you loved it or you didn't. You've grown up (well, perhaps). You collect or watch the show today. It holds the same appeal. It doesn't. Or you like it better. Better Then (when you were young and could be entertained by anything), or Better Now (it delivers you back, but also gives you something you didn't see the first time). For me, it pretty much breaks down to shows I enjoyed in the 60's that were written for my age then (around 10), to shows that were more adult and play better now. So here's my breakdown: (And these are all shows that I own at least one season of) BETTER THEN: Any Irwin Allen show (sorry, but these shows were specifically targeted for the ten year-old mind that often ruled the family television, and the cheesiness, thin characterizations, and unimaginative camera work is just too clunky to my ear and eye today). Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Lost in Space, Land of the Giants, Time Tunnel ... I loved you ... way back when. Not so much now. BETTER NOW: The Fugitive. This was always more an adult show, and I remember being bored to death trying to watch this as a kid. Now... it's brilliant. Great scripts. First rate acting. BETTER THEN: The Man From U.N.C.L.E Again, mostly written for the 10 year-old within us all. It relied too much on the cheap gadgets that don't hold up today. I lived and breathed this show in the '60s. I can't even get through the complete set I own today. BETTER NOW: I Spy. To be honest, I loved this show back then for the great chemistry between Bill Cosby and Robert Culp (and because I could stay up til 10 on a Wednesday night to watch it), and I love it just as much today. No gimmicks. Just a great buddy show. BETTER THEN: I Dream of Jeannie, Gilligan's Island, Beverly Hillbillies, Gomer Pyle, The Monkees, Laugh In, etc. etc. I confess to watching IDOJ because the hormones were kicking in and it was Barbara Eden. She's still lovely to look at, but I just don't get off on goofy comedy anymore. BETTER NOW: The Dick Van Dyke Show I enjoyed this as a 10 year-old for the physical schtick; I enjoy this today for the brilliant ensemble acting and great writing. And my 12-year old likes it. That's the test of a bulletproof show. BETTER THEN: Night Gallery. Sigh. I loved this show because it brought to life all my favorite horror stories. But today, it's stilted, the color and look dates it, the adaptations diminish rather than exceed my interpretations of the stories. Some gems, but mostly dull, unpolished stones. BETTER NOW: The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits (original series) Okay, this is a cheat. I was completely nuts over these shows then, and I'm still completely nuts over them now. Like a magical alignment of cosmic forces, they endure. TZ is the classic Aesop's Fables of our generation. These are timeless morality tales preserved in perfection. TOL was also that perfect combination of a writer and story editor (Joseph Stefano) hitting his creative peak, a gothic horror cinematography (Conrad Hall!) that had reached B&W perfection, and some marvelous casting. Ignore the look of the science today, but adore the fiction. BETTER THEN and BETTER NOW: Combat! I loved the fight scenes when I was 10 and watched this every week. I discovered how good the writing was and the acting in the non-fighting scenes when I re-watched this entire series with my then 10 year-old son more recently. I'll leave it there for now with the option to add more later. I'm sure I've lit a few flames, but let's all be honest about what really entertains us NOW versus then. Go ahead, Shoot .... (but not at me, please).