One of my favorite pop culture books is Paul Cantors wonderful Gilligan Unbound, which makes sense of four major TV shows: Gilligans Island, Star Trek, The Simpsons, and the X-Files. (The first two, Cantor argues, are windows into "Americanization," the latter two, windows into "globalization.")
Comes now the sad news that Bob Denver, aka Gilligan, has died. The critics always hated Gilligans Island, but it racked up pehnomenal ratings when it debuted the same fall that JFK was killed. Some critics said Americans wanted to watch some lighter fare in that dark hour.
Bob Denver, RIP.