Book Report: Movies and TV: The New York Public Library Book of Answers by Melinda Corey and George Ochoa (1992)

I paid $1.00 for this book last week at the J. I totally consumed it because I’m into trivia. Speaking of which, this book has the longest title of anything I’ve read in the last two years.

This book is kinda like a FAQ, especially FAQs like a former employer wanted me to write back when I was a technical writer: Just make up some questions. Actually, this is a little different, as someone did ask these questions of the New York Public Library.

The book focuses on movies, mostly classic movies, and television, mostly early television. Hopefully I have absorbed enough information to keep me competitive with MC Jazzy Pianist, the other anchor of the North Side Mind Flayers but sometimes a rival in non-official trivia events.

So I now know where RKO studios went and who played Joe Friday’s partner in the second television go-round of Dragnet (although I already knew that–perhaps I’m not keeping up after all). I did note an interesting confluence, whether real or perceived: a lot of long-running television series went off of the air in the early 1970s. A lot of shows seemed to run from the radio days through the new medium and right up until 1971 or 1974 or whatever. Someone could make a persuasive paper about how this reflects the changing of the guard from the “Greatest Generation” to the “Me-est Generation.” No doubt more academically-minded people than I have tried.

So is the book worth a buck? Of course not, Mike. Nothing to see here. Move along.

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