Last week marked the 49th anniversary of the airing of the first episode of The Monkees’ television show. The Pre-fab four was an instant hit and once the band lived on for years after their show and been cancelled and the four actor/musicians had gone their separate ways thanks to the magic of syndication.
We wanted to get the jump on next year’s golden anniversary by bringing you
the pilot episode, “Here Comes The Monkees,” which actually aired as the series’ tenth episode. In this episode the early seeds of a successful formula had been sewn, but they weren’t quite hitting on all cylinders yet. This episode was written by Paul Mazursky, who went on to be a big-time Oscar-nominated writer and director of films like Down and Out In Beverly Hills, and Larry Tucker, who was also Oscar-nominated as a screenwriter and went on to a successful career as an executive producer of movies like Stir Crazy. (PopCult Note: The Pilot Episode was pulled by YouTube, so we will instead replace it with a random episode. It’s still the Monkees, though)
Still, it was the charisma of the four Monkees themselves, Davy Jones, Mike Nesmith, Mickey Dolenz and Peter Tork, who carried the show and made it the pop culture touchstone that it was. So we offer up a “Hey, hey” for The Monkees.