November 08, 1972 was the day when an innovative entertainment network was launched called Home Box Office. We broke down the pay channel’s history when we celebrated it last year. So, this year, to honor the network we love we have to change it up a bit from just reiterating the history again. (Head back to the previous post for that.) But I did find a great clip to share highlighting some of the achievements HBO has had over the years. Please check out this well done video.
There has been over those years quite an interesting assortment of content. Sadly, HBO does not re-air, or have on its sites, some of the shows from the past. Can anyone else recall 1st & Ten, Da Ali G Show, ARLI$$, Autopsy, The Chris Rock Show, Dennis Miller Live, Dream On, The Hitchhiker, How To Make It In America, The Mind of the Married Man, The Kids In The Hall, Taxicab Confessions and the like? Or some of the original movie content? It was good also. Just to name a few how about From the Earth to the Moon, Attack of the 50ft Woman, Five Days, The Glitter Dome, Iron Jawed Angels and The Late Shift. Man, there is an HBO Classic post in each one of those titles.
Of course there are current hits as well. In fact, if you follow the “Happy Birthday HBO” link on the HBO site it will take you to HBONow where you can find an Essential Collection of HBO hits. It is on HBOGo as well. Listed there are the following recommendations: Season One, Episode One of eleven series. They are “Chapter One” from EASTBOUND AND DOWN, “Fundraiser” from VEEP, “Minimum Viable Product” from SILICON VALLEY, “Pilot” from GIRLS, “Pilot” from BIG LOVE, “Pilot” from SIX FEET UNDER, “Sex and the City” from SEX AND the City, “Strange Love” from TRUE BLOOD, “The Target” from THE WIRE and “Winter Is Coming” from GAME OF THRONES. Also there is “Chapter 1” from the miniseries ANGELS IN AMERICA PART I, HBO Films’ BEHIND the CANDELABRA and from HBO Documentary Films, CITIZENFOUR and GOING CLEAR.
All are exciting HBO choices and yet there is still more for you to explore from the long history of the pay channel. HBO’s streaming sites are great for recent content but for the older works you need to stockpile a DVD or, dare I say, a VHS stash. You might also stumble upon a YouTube clip or two as well. Here is a representation of a comedy and a drama.
I wish there were a plethora of exciting stuff to show, but it is limited and I need to safe some for next year’s birthday wishes. We will conclude with one more in a moment, but since I mentioned next year let’s acknowledge that HBO will continue its reign as an award-winning dynamo in 2016. Some grumble that HBO is not exciting right now, but it is planning big changes in the upcoming year. We realize that not all programming is for everyone, but HBO is coming with a well-rounded schedule with the presence of such content as VINYL, WESTWORLD and HBO Miniseries LEWIS AND CLARK. Plus there is more GAME OF THRONES and SILICON VALLEY and the revitalization of SESAME STREET and VICE and even more.
What better way to say “Happy Birthday” to HBO than to be a loyal watcher on the platform of your choice and enjoy. Oh, and sorry for that Hannah shot above, but it seemed fitting!
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Editor at Large of HBOWatch.com and the internet's foremost HBO expert.