Jumping the shark

I really like this essay in which the writer of the infamous Happy Days’ Fonzie jumps the shark on waterskis episode defends himself and the role this episode played in happy days.   I brought it up with my friends in the context of explaining how Entourage had gone horribly downhill (lazy and sloppy writing) with no true “jump the shark” moment.  Further conversation  as to what precisely the phrase “jumped the shark” means, led us to learn that the term is not nearly as universally known as I thought.  I polled my class, and only about a third of them knew.  Sad– it’s such a useful term in pop culture.  In case that’s you, you know what to do.  And, for the record, Fred Fox makes quite a compelling case that Happy Days did not “jump the shark” when Fonzie did.  Interesting how these things take on a life of their own.

About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

2 Responses to Jumping the shark

  1. Jeff Pelletier says:

    A great turn of phrase! I actually remember watching that episode as a kid, as I’m sure you do too.

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