Classics: Are They Too Old?

Classics: Are They Too Old? The thought came to my attention this afternoon, when I turned on I Love Lucy and my brother threw a fit. "I hate those black and white shows"! He protested, "They're all so boring"!

I Love Lucy is a classic television show, and it was enjoyed by everyone when it first came out. Are we too absorbed by the appeal of new things, that we blow off the classics just because they're old hat?

I remember during the school year I was reading the book Animal Farm by George Orwell, and in one class a boy sitting near me pointed to it and said, "Is that a baby book?"
Animal Farm is based on the Soviet totalitarianism, set to the characters of farm animals who stage a coup on the farm and run out the owners, where it's just them living and soon the government they set up goes corrupt. Yes. Very baby-ish. I explained to him that it was a famous classic, and he just shrugged. He had never heard of it.

These days, the things that are popular are so much less amusing than things popular now. For example, nowadays the popular shows are reality dating shows, where greedy gold diggers line up to "fall in love" with some hideous old Z-list celebrity and fight amongst themselves. Counter to that, Charlie Chaplin's revolutionary and delightfully entertaining antics in his array of Little Tramp movies were what people watched in the 1920's and onward when they needed a break from reality. Now, if I mentioned Charlie Chaplin, I would just get puzzled looks.

You're probably thinking: Are these classics as good as she says they are? Maybe she just likes them, but they could in fact be pretty dumb. My answer is this: in eighth grade, my class read The Outsiders. One of my favorites, and a definite classic. The book was an instant favorite among the kids, and they enjoyed referencing the "tuff" greasers and troublesome Socs. They still fondly remember it. Now, if the school had never forced this book upon them, would they ever get the chance to read it? Of course not. It's old.
What can we do to hinder the fall out of these classics?

Read them! Watch them! Enjoy them! Be open-minded, and don't knock it 'til you try it. Remember, not everyone that's good is new.

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