That '70s Show Forums

FOX (ended 2006)

Does the timeline continuity bother anyone else?

  • Avatar of ale3ia

    ale3ia

    [21]May 17, 2006
    • member since: 02/26/06
    • level: 4
    • rank: Thighmaster
    • posts: 5
    Hey joemono.
    I was referring to your original post theme, but commenting on the posts of this topic generally. You gave me no wrong impression, I actually found your question very interesting, since I happened to have discussed it some time ago with my other-sitcomfreak-half, (a.k.a boyfriend)

    It does seem like I'm taking it too seriously, it's just that, in the 18 posts I read, I didn't see anyone pointing out this point of view, and was actually surprised about the almost unanimous negative criticism.

    By saying 'try to be a little more rational', I didn't mean that anyone was irrational. I meant that most comments were partially rational, in my opinion. A coin has (at least) two faces.
    On one hand, its very rational to point out that there were more Christmases than should be and that Eric turned 18 six years after he turned 17 like Ahammer2487 mentioned, etc. There were significant errors in the timeline.
    On the other hand, when its the Christmas period, in a sitcom it is at least recommended, if not obligatory to have Christmas episodes, no matter what you are trying to pass.
    So, on one hand they have failed in this sense, but on the other, it doesn't really matter, it's not a true story.

    Regards

    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of azzytyb

    azzytyb

    [22]May 17, 2006
    • member since: 06/11/05
    • level: 2
    • rank: Sweat Hog
    • posts: 35
    the time thing doesnt bug me at all. In the end, had they embraced the time progression and acknowledged that the show was going into the 1980's, they probably would have taken out the 70s flavour and gone for 80s style and we all know how badly that 80s show did (for those who dont, it got half way through its first season and was then cancelled). As one poster pointed out, the writers made no provision for the show lasting 8 seasons because, even if a show does well in its first season, its still just wishful thinking to think that it will last 8 years.

    Also, holiday dates are only one element of the shows time progression. Also consider the fact that eric is 17 a few eps into season 1 but doesnt turn 18 until season 6 suggesting that season 6 is 1977. Tbh, the writers never paid that much attebntion to the time details and though it is wholly illogical for the finale to magically be new years eve 1979, i still think its a great date to end the show on.



    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of luv_my_tv

    luv_my_tv

    [23]May 17, 2006
    • member since: 05/12/06
    • level: 4
    • rank: Thighmaster
    • posts: 49
    Quick response to the thread's question: no.
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of mook6996

    mook6996

    [24]May 18, 2006
    • member since: 08/24/03
    • level: 1
    • rank: Weatherman
    • posts: 16
    it doesn't bother me, but I knew they wre stuck in time...hope the finale has something exciting...I read most of the spoilers( which I tried not to..I hope they do somthing shocking like run over Randy with the Vista Cruiser!!
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of mdstudio

    mdstudio

    [25]May 18, 2006
    • member since: 10/20/05
    • level: 5
    • rank: Caveman Lawyer
    • posts: 191
    I suspect they either lost track or didn't give it much thought (or think that other people were paying that much attention).

    Of course with all of the "circle sitting" perhaps some of the episodes were just long and funny hallucinations (with a laughing audience). ;-)
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of seinfeld111690

    seinfeld111690

    [26]May 18, 2006
    • member since: 08/13/05
    • level: 25
    • rank: Coconut Phone
    • posts: 19,951
    i noticed it, never really bothered me though.
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of ace_ryan_icon

    ace_ryan_icon

    [27]May 18, 2006
    • member since: 07/26/05
    • level: 4
    • rank: Thighmaster
    • posts: 127
    Who cares about the time. Really, 1979 lasted 3 seasons. Still a great show. Though season 8? Blah.
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of tsteel2

    tsteel2

    [28]May 19, 2006
    • member since: 05/17/06
    • level: 4
    • rank: Thighmaster
    • posts: 72
    Thanks for finally pointing that out!!! I realized that too, but everyone seems to pass the idea up. It was definitely a bit confusing...they should have started the show earlier in the 70's to account for the possibility that it may last longer than four years!!!
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of FlightlessBird

    FlightlessBird

    [29]May 19, 2006
    • member since: 02/08/06
    • level: 11
    • rank: Red Shirted Lt.
    • posts: 290
    Yeah evidentially 1979 was one REALLY long year. I think the problem was when they were coming up with the show they didn't think it would last as long as they did. If they thought it would they have set it in 70 or 71. Of course that means we would have had to wait 5 ot 6 years for that great Star Wars episode.
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of beast255

    beast255

    [30]May 19, 2006
    • member since: 05/13/06
    • level: 11
    • rank: Red Shirted Lt.
    • posts: 18
    it dosnt matter, the show is great and will be great. we all have wonder that question before or just after reading the ?.
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of ccrickzz28

    ccrickzz28

    [31]May 19, 2006
    • member since: 06/10/05
    • level: 8
    • rank: Super-Friend
    • posts: 83
    doesnt the show start in like the late 70's... why didnt they have it start in like 1970.. so there would be any time problems... i have always thought this.
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of Phroday

    Phroday

    [33]May 19, 2006
    • member since: 01/26/05
    • level: 11
    • rank: Red Shirted Lt.
    • posts: 16
    The initial producers of the show wanted to make a show about kids in the 70s. Problem being that the majority of the things that common culture associates with the 70s mostly occured in the late 70s. So they decided to start it at 1976 with the intent of a half year per season. But that allusion went away after a while and it really just became "generic timeframe in the late 70s." You all know how warped time continuity can get with a period show.
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of j3ssiicaa

    j3ssiicaa

    [34]May 20, 2006
    • member since: 11/26/05
    • level: 5
    • rank: Caveman Lawyer
    • posts: 1,243
    the reason why the show started in '76 is becuase thats when Star Wars came out
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of tomuchtv

    tomuchtv

    [35]May 22, 2006
    • member since: 11/15/05
    • level: 4
    • rank: Thighmaster
    • posts: 64
    dose anyone eles wonder y when they graduate(in the seasoon finale of season 5 celebration day) its the yr 79, there supposed to graduate in 78, there are many mistakes in the time line like eric turning 17 in 76 and turning 18 in 79, ut whoo cares, as loong as the show is good, and it is
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of gcfan77

    gcfan77

    [36]May 28, 2006
    • member since: 05/10/06
    • level: 4
    • rank: Thighmaster
    • posts: 82
    It said that Graduation was in 1978. Hope that helps!
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of dude71414

    dude71414

    [37]Jun 1, 2006
    • member since: 05/25/06
    • level: 2
    • rank: Sweat Hog
    • posts: 60
    j3ssiicaa wrote:
    the reason why the show started in '76 is becuase thats when Star Wars came out


    Thanks inspector

    Another flaw is that Kelso wanted to have the toga party in the year 1976. He got the idea from Animal House, which came out in 1977. Also Star Wars came out in 77
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of TooSense

    TooSense

    [38]Jun 1, 2006
    • member since: 05/08/06
    • level: 1
    • rank: Weatherman
    • posts: 38

    FlightlessBird wrote:
    I think the problem was when they were coming up with the show they didn't think it would last as long as they did. If they thought it would they have set it in 70 or 71.

    I think the reason they chose 1976 instead of earlier was because it was a really fun, carefree time in America's history.  If they started the show in 1970 or '71, they would've had to deal w/issues like Watergate & Nixon's resignation (OMG, can you imagine how much angrier Red would've been b/c of that?), Vietnam & the draft, the deaths of Morrison, Joplin, Hendrix & Mama Cass.  Way too heavy for a sitcom.  By starting it in 1976, the heaviest issue was the economy & gas crisis, which fit great in a comedy about a teen who owned a gas guzzling Vista Cruiser.

    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of NakedCropBandit

    NakedCropBandit

    [39]Jun 1, 2006
    • member since: 06/01/06
    • level: 7
    • rank: Talk Show Host
    • posts: 173

    I've questioned the years that the episodes take place, too.  Do the licence plates lie?  Well, think about it.  It's already been brought up that Eric turned 17 in 1976 and turned 18 in 1978, according to the plates.  Anyway, here's how the years the plates suggest the episodes take place.  (I don't think there are any mistakes, but feel free to point them out for me.)

    1) '76-'77

    2) '77

    3) '77-'78

    4) '78

    5) '78

    6) '79

    7) '79

    '79-'80

    Let me just say that what I'm about to do isn't nitpicking for the sake of nitpicking but for the sake of fun.  I think that it's fun every once and a while to notice mistakes that shows make, but it doesn't really ruin the show for me because I don't mind.

    Anyway, the first episode of season 5 is set during the summer before Eric's senior year.  The plates say it's '78.  Are the plates wrong?  Most likely.  I would bet that the writers placed that on the plate so people wouldn't be in disbelieve of how slow time was going (even though it went slow enough as it was).  After all, if Eric was a junior in '76-'77, he'd be a senior from '77-'78, so it would be the summer of '77 instead of the summer of '78.  That means that all seasons between 1 and 5 take place in '77.

    Since the last episode of season 5 is graduation, it must take place in '78.  Some episodes of season 5 are in '77, and others are in '78, were we to follow a realistic timeline.

    Also, if I haven't made a mistake, the first episode of season 6 takes place a few weeks after the last of season 5.  I doubt that Laurie's honeymoon in Mexico would last for months (even though she's the kind of person who would probably take a honeymoon that long.  With that being said, at least some of the episodes of season 6 take place in '78 instead of '79, like the plate suggests.

    It's hard to determine exactly when the series would (realistically) make the switch over to '79.  Of course, Red's remark in the first episode of the eighth season points out that it's '79. (Eric's G.I. Joes were killed in the Great Dumpster War of 1979.)

    This is where things get tricky.  The writters treated each season as an invidual year, no matter how you look at it.  Everyone says that Eric and Donna were apart for a year, and Eric said that he was taking a year off.  There are also the holiday episodes that have been pointed out.  If we wanted to make sense of the timeline, we could say that the episodes just weren't aired in chronological order, and that some of the holiday episodes of different seasons took place close to one another.  Of course, you'd have to worry about story arcs, blah, blah, blah, and who has the time to do that?

    If we were to take holiday episodes into account, however, then the show wouldn't be set in '79 until sometime around season 8.  Remember the episode when Red told Hyde about his present stash?  Well, I thought it sucked, too, but I still remember it.  It took place around Valentine's Day.

    Anyway, here is a much more logical (but most likely still flawed because of each season being treated as a year) year for each season.

    1) '76-'77

    2) '77

    3) '77

    4) '77

    5) '77-'78

    6) '78

    7) '78

    '79-'80

    As you can see, had a more logical year been given to each episode, then nearly half of the episodes would take place in '77.  Staying in '77 for almost 5 years.  That's probably why the plates had screwed up years on them.

    Of course, the fact that episodes wouldn't be aired in chronological order if we were to take holiday episodes into account might mess with the order above a little.  If someone had enough dedication, though, they could watch the holiday episodes of '70s and come up with a logical order for the episodes.

    Are the plates wrong?  Probably not.  After all, this is not our creation.  Perhaps it was the creator's intent for the episodes to take place exactly in the year the plates say.  It's their creation.  After all, if Bart Simpson can stay 9 years old for nearly 20 years, then '70s can get away with all of the errors it makes.

    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.
  • Avatar of dude71414

    dude71414

    [40]Jun 2, 2006
    • member since: 05/25/06
    • level: 2
    • rank: Sweat Hog
    • posts: 60
    You have way to much time on your hands
    You must be registered and logged in to post a message.