TV | Pop Culture | 80s

7 Variety Shows We All Watched In The 80s That Will Make Your Childhood Flash Before Your Eyes

Watching TV when you were little was always a big treat. When we were kids, there wasn't a screen in every room or in your pocket on your phone. You had to fight for that remote to be able to watch your favorite show. It turned out that the best way to get your siblings to agree on what to watch was often to pick something that tried to have a little something for everyone. So what was better than a variety show?

Our parents could tolerate them, and us kids loved them! There were so many goofy skits, great games, and crazy characters that would keep us entertained. How many of these shows do you remember?

1. Zoom

PBS made so many hit shows, that's it's hard to pick a favorite, but Zoom was one of those shows that was universally loved. It ran for six years in its original run, but even after it ended they knew kids weren't done with it yet. In 1999 it came back for another seven seasons with new characters being rotated in every year.

2. You Can't Do That On Television

While the show was filmed in Canada, it took on a life of its own when it started airing on Nickelodeon. This show was the first time the world was presented with "slime" but it wouldn't be the last. The sketch-comedy show had a lot of fake commercials, they did a lot of parody moments, and of course you can't forget the slime.

Also, Canadian singer Alanis Morissette, actually got her start in the show! She was supposed to be in five episodes but only one of them has ever aired.

CTV / Nickelodeon

3. Mr. Wizard's World

I know you might be thinking that Bill Nye is the original science guy, but Mr. Wizard actually helped a lot of kids get interested in science before Bill Nye was even around. He was the caring and patient teacher we all wished we had.

4. Kids Incorporated

This show made each and every one of us wish we were in a super cool rock band. They all went through a lot of different issues, It also introduced us all to Stacy Ferguson, also known as Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas.

Those weren't the only great shows...

5. Kids Are People Too

This show actually started in the late 70s, but it continued into the 80s. The show was nominated for many Emmy Awards in its run, thanks to their interviews, cartoons, and musical segments. They would answer kid's questions and interview celebrities and kids loved it.

6. Reading Rainbow


"Take a look, it's in a book, Reading Rainbow." The song is one that has stayed with us for all these years, but it was the ability of their host, Levar Burton, to make everyone feel engaged with reading that led to the success of the series.

7. Double Dare

While it was more of a game show than a variety show, it was beloved by all. Kids love to get messy and play games, so why not just let them all go hog-wild?

I watched Zoom every day when I was a kid. What was your go-to show?

Source - sheknows