Nickelodeon’s success is due to a Canadian show that is quirky

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If you asked someone on the street to name a critical Nickelodeon show, you’d probably hear answers like Avatar for The Last Airbender, Spongebob SquarepantsOder Rugrats. However, before these titans were born, there was You Can’t Do That On Television. The quirky Canadian children’s show forever changed the future of the then-fledgling station.

How Nickelodeon Was Created

Nickelodeon’s seed was planted by Dr. Vivian Horner in 1977, when the show was first created. PinwheelIt was broadcast on a local Ohio cable channel. She was able to make it a national success with the support of Warner Media. In 1979, Nickelodeon officially launched as the first dedicated children’s network on cable.

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Nickelodeon remained a network that primarily focused on educational programming for the next few decades, but it didn’t really have an identity. Instead of programming that kids would enjoy, the network focused on programs that were approved by parents. It was in need of a hit to establish a brand and provide a roadmap for the future.

Canadians Are Here to Help

Meanwhile, up in Canada, a kid’s version of Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-InIt was gaining momentum: You Can’t Do That On Television. The original 1979 debut of the show was picked up by Nickelodeon to be syndicated in America in 1981. It had a unique sense of humor that felt like a show made for children.

This was a very important running gag that turned out to be a highlight of the show. When someone said “I don’t know,”They would see green slime suddenly covering their heads. Legend says that the distinctive green color was caused by leftover gags that had turned to mold. It was a disgusting sight for the cast, but it was loved by the audience. The audience was so enthusiastic that slime was featured in almost every episode.

An Important Hit

You Can’t Do That On TelevisionNickelodeon was finally given an identity. This was a huge success and slime became a brand for the entire network. In the next Nickelodeon smash, slime was a key factor: Double Dare. Children love to make big mess.

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From there, the network exploded in popularity. The Kids’ Choice Awards and Nick Jr. both launched in 1988. Nicktoons appeared in 1991. All in one night Doug, Rugrats,And Ren & Stimpy all debuted. Each one was a success in its own way.

Nickelodeon quietly dissolved Nickelodeon in 1994 You Can’t Do That On TelevisionIt was removed from its schedule. It was replaced by a new sketch program: All That. The changing of eras is downright poignant, as there definitely wouldn’t be All ThatIt wouldn’t have been possible without it. You Can’t Do That On Television.

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