It's been 10 years since Lizzie Borden High School's class of '72 graduated, and the preppies, the hippies and the in-crowd has returned to reminisce over good times past. But classmate Walter Baylor has returned too with a vengeance.
Camp Tar Creek is a backwater U.S. Army outpost, enlivened by the shenanigans of Sergeant Val Valentine, and pal Private Tony Baker. Their money-making schemes must escape detection by Major Hawkins. Baker's girlfriend is Corporal Lola Grey.
The movie Animal House was originally going to be a very black, off color, off kilter comedy about Charles Manson in high school. This was eventually deemed to be too weird,shocking and offensive; so it was turned into a raunchy variation on American Graffiti; set in the early 1960s (just like American Graffiti). The movie was eventually spun off into this very tame sitcom. It's hard to believe a very shocking National Lampoon comedy about Charles Manson eventually evolved into this very tame 1970s sitcom with a laugh track; but here it is. See more »
In the 1970s, no hit film was safe from the clutches of ambitious TV producers. "Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore" became "Alice," "Private Benjamin" became, um, "Private Benjamin", and let's not even talk about ABC's ill-fated attempt to turn "The Deer Hunter" into a sitcom vehicle for Norman Fell.
In that vein, "Delta House" had the potential to be a worthy follow-up to "Animal House." It reunited much of the cast of the debaucherous 1978 classic as well as many of the original's creative team. Trouble was, "Animal House" was a raunchy R-rated movie, and in 1979, television was so squeaky-clean you couldn't even say the word "pregnant." ABC, land of "Three's Company"'s wacky-till-it-bleeds double-entendres, stuck "Delta House" in an early-evening timeslot worthy of "The Waltons" and surgically excised any trace of the original's humor, leaving the cast with nothing to do but pass around tone-deaf anti-establishment banter that even Dean Wormer would have found square. "Delta House" got promising ratings despite all this, but perhaps sensing the creative impossibility, ABC pulled the plug. The cast and crew deserve a medal for trying, but there was just no way to adapt a screamingly funny R-rated film for broadcast TV in 1979, and thankfully there still isn't. John Belushi's Bluto would have smashed this show to bits on a staircase.
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