Everyone had their favorite television shows in the 60s and 70s. Thing was, we didn't have access to binge watching and seeing the shows over and over like kids today can. We had to sit down at a certain time each week to catch our favorite show and if we missed it, maybe we could catch the episode as a rerun - months later...if we were lucky.
So, how else could we get our fix? Good 'ole board games - and it turns out there were tons of them made in the 1970s.
A recent search online turned up some pretty weird games that are still hanging around some 40+ yerars after they were first sold.
Let's take a look!
Leave it to Beaver | Rocket to the Moon Space Game
Yeah - you read that right. "Leave it to Beaver" and "Space Game" together in one title. This was a board game made in 1959 that had two players flip a small rocket shaped "die" then move their small marker chip around a board as they explored space. I think Eddie, Lumpy, and even kind, well-mannered Wally would have been laughing themselves silly at the idea of this game, especially since I don't recall any time that Beaver ever talked about playing a spaceman or the like.
The Love Boat | World Cruise Game
Tell me you don't hear the voice of Jack Jones singing the theme song at the mere mention of this show, especially this part which everyone seems to know:
"The Love Boat soon will be making another run
The Love Boat promises something for everyone
Set a course for adventure
Your mind on a new romance"
The game follows on the same basic theme of the show by having different players assuming the roles of the ship guest (played by famous celebrities on the show) each of who has certain traits. These traits come into play as the cruise ship travels to different ports of call, and players use them to gain advantages over the others. In essence, this is a strategy game and has little to do with the TV show except the branding and some of the graphic on the game pieces. But that's okay - it gets us singing that great tune and wistfully dreaming again.
Barnabas Collins | Dark Shadows Game
Based on a soap opera that ran from 1966 to 1971, this game has a video advertisement that gets the kid whipped up in me. I just watched it for the first time and thought the game looked so cool!
Who wouldn't want a game that comes with a vampire, a stake (watch our for it!), and even glow in the dark teeth!! Seriously Milton Bradley Company - you had me at the cool coffin shot.
Lost in Space Game
Like the popular show from the 70s, the object of this game is to travel through space to unknown planets, explore, and not get killed.
Unlike the TV show, this game has only a board, player tokens, and a spinner to work with. Hazards of various types are printed on the board.
All I can say is that Lost in Space doesn't work for me without the Robot, of course. And Dr. Smith. Poor, pathetic, whimpering Dr. Smith.
Starsky & Hutch | Detective Game
This game from 1977 was based on the hit series about two Bay City police detectives that ran on ABC TV from 1975 through 1979. The show starred Paul Michael Glaser as David Starsky and David Soul as Kenneth "Hutch" Hutchinson. And who could forget their bad ass red Ford Gran Torino with the white stripe, a car that, to this day, many of us who love muscle cars still lust over.
In the game, the two cops are once again chasing after the bad guys but without the car, Starsky's cardigan, and the ever-present chance that Hutch might break out a rendition of his #1 Billboard song, it's just not the same.
Ben Casey M.D. Game
Aaaaah, Ben Casey. Who's mom didn't have a wild crush on this guy? The show, known for its opening titles, which consisted of a hand drawing the symbols "♂, ♀, ✳, †, ∞" on a chalkboard representing "man, woman, birth, death, and infinity, starred Vince Edwards as the handsome, idealistic neurosurgeon working at County General Hospital. The 1961 board game based on the show is pretty simple - roll a die, move from room to room in a hospital, collect "symptom" cards, then make a successful diagnosis. Leaves plenty of time for chasing after that dreamboat doctor the game is named after now, doesn't it.
Got Any You Want to Ad to the List?
Let me know if you have any old favorites you'd like to see included.