In the beginning was the word, and the word was Uncle Floyd.
My devotion to this teevee character and his throw-it-against-the-wall programming broadcast via UHF out of New Jersey is rooted in the fact that for years I never saw the program--but only heard about it from my friends in the
New York area. The Uncle Floyd Show was what the rock elitists watched while everyone else was focused on, say, Saturday Night Live.
The comedy schtick of Floyd and his cast of misfits suggested a paradise where whatever you could think of you could actually do on television.
Much of what we take for granted now--especially the homemade ineptitude of a youtube video or the intentional messiness of hipster tv commercials--were all present on Floyd's program taped in what seemed like someone's garage.
And as you can see from the Floyd website, the garage bands flocked there and rose to the challenge.
Back in the days of NY punk and garage sensibilities--when it was riskier and certainly more harebrain--I used The Uncle Floyd Show as the barometer of whether or not I would want to associate with someone. When I was asked--as we always were back then--what I was "into these days," I'd say: "Uncle Floyd, of course." Invariably, someone would respond with, "yeah, well, I like PINK Floyd, too, but they haven't been the same since The Piper at the
Gates of Dawn." At that moment, I would simply walk away.
Not everyone was hip to Uncle Floyd then. But now, you can buy his programs on DVD, VHS, and the Internet, and long for the day when discovering a tv program really meant something.