As we have all heard by now Andy Griffith has passed away today. Andy Griffith has been on my tv my entire life. He was a fantastic and charismatic actor. I don’t know what it was about him, but he seemed to embody all that was good and real and human. I liked him almost as much as my mom, who also grew up with him.
It’s because of mom I discovered him in the first place because of the Andy Griffith show. Now as a kid who was used to color tv, watching a black and white show was something I really rebelled against. But when I heard that simply whistled theme and saw Andy and Opie walking down the path, I was enthralled. That theme is iconic. I defy anyone to start whistling that tune and no one not get where it came from.
It’s funny how even as a little kid I got taken in by the simplicity and wholesomeness of the show. And it was hilarious. Everything about this show despite not having much in the way of technology back then was done right. Which proves to me that over the top effects and things are completely unnecessary when making a great show. Even now I still consider it one of the greatest shows of all time.
And then came Matlock. I loved this show more than anything in the world as a kid. I always watched it with my dad and it intensified my enthusiasm for crime dramas and mysteries. Keep in mind in the 80′s I was just a kid under 10. So watching Andy Griffith Show and then watching Matlock confused the heck out of me. I was having a hard time accepting that Andy Griffith managed to age overnight.
That aside, I loved Matlock, especially when the courtroom parts came up. It was like Perry Mason, which I also liked. He also reminded me someone of Columbo with the way he got information out of people. People always seemed to think he was a feeble old man and be shocked to find there was a fully functioning and sharp mind under that grey hair. Every episode I’d always say to the people on tv ‘You REALLY thought you were gonna get away from Ben Matlock?’ Matlock was so boss.
I’m listening to the theme music right now. It just fills me with such joy and I always loved the use of the tuba. It’s my favorite part of the music. It’s an epic tune that makes me think of Andy Griffith even more than the Andy Griffith Show.
But dang it, we lost another good one. I kind of felt it was fast approaching. I saw the interview they did with him when Don Knotts died. I saw his face and it was like a part of him had died along with Don. They had more than a friendship. It was more like family. They were brothers for real and you could see it. Now they are both with Our Father and now they can bring the laughs again in Heaven. RIP Andy Griffith. You entertained me my entire life and I’ll never forget you.