Square One TV

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PBS (ended 1992)

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8.2
out of 10
User Rating
100 votes
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SHOW REVIEWS
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Square One TV

Show Summary

Mathman, your mission is to explore the Square One TV guide at TV.com. You will explore the guide, taking in the details about the show and contributing any information you may have about the show if you so desire. But beware the evil Mr. Glitch. He will eat you if you navigate away too quickly. Square One TV was a PBS series dedicated to making math fun. Airing daily on most PBS stations, this show was full of pop-culture parodies, great music, excellent skits and so much more. Much like The Electric Company, a celebrated phonetics series of the 1970s, Square One TV went from one concept to the next. The series had occasional celebrity guests, such as talented musicians and even magician Harry Blackstone. Legendary announcer Gary Owens became a regular in the second season, voicing Lt. Dirk Niblick, who helped his friends understand certain sales traps. The most recognized element of Square One TV, appearing at the end of each episode, was "Mathnet," a parody of the show Dragnet. Each Mathnet case lasted for one week (or five episodes) of the show and featured detectives George Frankly and his partner Kate Monday (Pat Tuesday in Seasons Four and Five) solving a fictional crime through the use of math. A big part of Square One TV seemed to be its devotion to The University of Michigan. Pac-Man parody Mathman wore a Wolverines helmet; programs in the third season made estimates based on the Michigan Stadium; Lt. Dirk Niblick's mother was a Michigan fan, and so on. It was all within reason: Square One TV's executive producer, the late David D. Connell, graduated from The University of Michigan in 1953 and the show's senior producer, Jim Thurman, is from the UM class of 1957. Square One TV was a production of the Children's Television Workshop, known today as Sesame Workshop. Some major changes came to the show in Season Four: the opening theme music and credits as well as the closing credits were changed, many new segments were added and the Mathnet series moved permanently from California to New York. The series was continued till the end of its fifth season and then canceled, much to the disappointment of its many fans. The show continued in repeats on most PBS stations until 1994 and then left the airwaves pretty much entirely... until it was picked up by the satellite/cable station Noggin. But Noggin took the show off along with a bunch of other Sesame Workshop shows in May 2003, so now Square One TV isn't on any station any more. Special thanks to Brian Hilley for information on segments that Noggin cut out when they showed the program. Noggin also aired some episodes of "Mathnet" on a program called Phred on Your Head. Still looking to watch some Square One TV? Look for online videos, check your local library (including any inter-system loan setup they may have) and GPN --- a great resource for this and other classic shows, including Ghostwriter and 3-2-1 Contact. Note: Square One TV only showed credits at the end of each five-episode run. Guest stars will be credited, to the best of the editor's abilities, for only those episodes in which they appeared, but special crediting notes (such as actors credited by a different name) will only be shown for every fifth episode. Special thanks to RantinAnton and Curtis Olmsted for their help in adding information to this guide. May the math be with you!

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Priscilla Lopez

Priscilla Lopez

 

Toni DiBuono

Toni DiBuono

Pat Tuesday (Seasons 4-5)

Gary Owens

Gary Owens

Lt. Dirk Niblick

James Earl Jones

James Earl Jones

Chief Thad Green (Seasons 1-2), Booming Announcer Voice (Season 3)

Reg E. Cathey

Reg E. Cathey

Various Roles

Beverly Leech

Beverly Leech

Kate Monday (Seasons 1-3)

Saturday
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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Previously Hated math!

    10
    Square One TV made me love math!
  • Math hurts.

    6.0
    I have never been able to figure out the Math equations that have been a problem for for years and years. I can't stand the fact that this entire show took up the time that could have been given to a better one or a more entertaining one. I don't think that it was a bad show. It was extremely educational for those that wanted to learn. But I was really too young to even care and I wanted something in the lines of a cartoon or a show with puppets. Overall, I have to say that the show was just average, if that at all. Thank you.moreless
  • Number games, songs, cartoons, special guests, and oh, the glory that was Mathnet. One of the best educational shows of all time.

    10
    Square One TV taught the principles of mathematics through humor, animation, songs, regular skits such as take-offs on game shows, and the detective team of Mathnet. Mathman, a humble video game character, roamed the landscape solving problems while evading the sinister Mr. Glitch. Artists such as Kurtis Blow and the Fat Boys contributed catchy songs about how to use mathematical formulas. Lt. Dirk Niblick of the Math Brigade, a hero and what a guy, took on seemingly impossible riddles and always emerged the smarter for it. The general cast themselves chimed in with bizarre mock music pieces I can still sing to this day.



    Did I mention I loved Mathnet? Well, I loved Mathnet. With its creepy Dragnet music and its plucky badge-wearing lovers of number law, George Frankly and Kate Monday, the little series-within-a-series which capped off every episode was a national treasure in its own right. They would use math to complete cases, ending by carting the offenders off to jail, with a little advice to turn from their errant ways: “It’s worse than illegal, it’s not nice.”



    This show made me get home from school early.



    I hope someday we’ll get to see a home release. It’s worth it.

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  • Highly educational

    10
    Why did they cancel this show? They're a lot of children who have a hard time getting through with Mathematics today, so this show will help them out in a big way.



    Filled with amazing mathematical facts such as how much time it takes a clock to reach 1 billion seconds , as well as my personal favorite, writing down a certain formula with a number you chose. And no matter what you do, you always get the same answer. Other favorites were Mathman and Mathnet.



    Extremly educational and funny (especially Mathnet) Please bring it back.moreless
  • I grew up with this show. It made math surprisingly enjoyable. With math scores down and all, they should being it back.

    9.0
    Most people don't know this show exists, in fact I forget most of it except the fact my face was glued to the sceeen when I'd watch it. It was entertaining, witty, and made math interesting. I enjoyed once correcting a teacher thanks to this show. =p I normally write reviews better than this, but I just forget too much at this point. I only remember that it had some funny skits and somehow managed to bring math into the overall picture in a sensible way. It makes math become "not abstract."moreless
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  • 10:00 pm
    20/20
    NEW
    ABC

More Info About This Show

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Comedy