This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. November Learn how and when to remove this template message The creators had wanted the show to have a s "feel" from the beginning, so opted to set the series later in the decade, when trends and political ideologies had become firmly established and disseminated.
The idea that the duration of the series would carry sociopolitical undertones also necessitated a chain of social events which could influence the characters. Thus, was chosen, which allowed episodes set within a short time frame to address streaking , the sexual revolution , the Equal Rights Amendment , the oil crisis , and the presidencies of Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford , all of which were culturally influential events that occurred in the earlier years of the s. The shift to during the last half of the first season also allowed the inclusion of the first Star Wars movie, which premiered in May Late Spring, or June These, however, were largely abandoned after season 2, with few subsequent episodes using them.
However, they were used again in the final episode, showing "December 31, The final episode's closing credits showed an "80" year tag. The show was set in May in the August 23, premiere. After 12 episodes, the series transitioned to The 23rd episode, "Grandma's Dead", was also set in , because it was supposed to be the season finale of season 1.
The show remained in for the next two seasons. Near the end of the third season, the series transitioned to until early in the sixth season. The remaining episodes took place in , and the series finale abruptly ends during a New Year's Eve party as the characters reach "one" during a countdown to January 1, The show's unexpected longevity it was the only series to debut on Fox in to survive cancellation combined with the first season jump to necessitated a slow-down of the series' timeline.
As the series timeline sped up and slowed down with more rapidity near the series' climax, the timeline necessitated that several major events depicted as having occurred months apart would have in fact happened within weeks or even days of one another. The timeline issues experienced on the show were not unprecedented, as other period-specific TV series have had similar issues. Additionally, many TV series over the years that take place in the present time have characters age faster than normal while other characters age naturally.
Eighth season and series finale[ edit ] The character of Eric Forman was written out of the series at the end of the seventh season , as Topher Grace wanted to move on with his career.
Tommy Chong who began reappearing by late season 7 after a long absence became a regular again to help fill Kelso's role as the dimwit of the group.
Eric was originally supposed to be replaced by his new friend Charlie, played by Bret Harrison , as an "innocent character", who proved fairly popular with audiences, but the character was killed off after Harrison was offered a lead role in the series The Loop. The location of the show's introductory theme song was changed from the Vista Cruiser to the circle. Both Eric and Kelso returned for the series' final episode, although Topher Grace was uncredited. The eighth season was announced as the final season of the show on January 17, ,  and "That '70s Finale" was filmed a month later on February 17, , first airing on May 18, However, due to the denials of these three songs from the s including Pete Townshend 's denial of using his two songs for each of the two titles , and Fox Network's decision that Feelin' All Right was not too memorable, co-creator Bonnie Turner suggested that the show should be titled That '70s Show, which became the official title.
The original version of the song appeared on Big Star's debut album 1 Record. Instead, a cover version sung by Todd Griffin was used as the theme song for the show's first season. Beginning in the second season, the theme song was performed by the band Cheap Trick. Unlike previous versions of the song, Cheap Trick ended the song with the repeated phrase "We're all alright!
Opening credits[ edit ] Opening credits for seasons 1—7 showed members of the cast driving in Eric's car singing the theme song together.
During the first season's opening, a single shot of the group is used; beginning with season 2, numerous alternating shots were used of the cast in various groupings including the adult cast members, who had not appeared in the first season's opening. After Topher Grace and Ashton Kutcher left the series, the opening credits were reworked for season 8 to feature close-up shots of each of the actors singing or mouthing a line of the theme song in the Circle for example, Mila Kunis "Hanging Out The only actors to not say or do anything in the new opening credits were Kurtwood Smith and Tommy Chong , with the exception of the first episode of season 8, when Chong sings the last "We're all alright".
Smith looks at the camera frowning and rolls his eyes. Chong looks around the room, confused as he hears "Hello, Wisconsin! Elements of the show[ edit ] The s[ edit ] This section possibly contains original research. Please improve it by verifying the claims made and adding inline citations.
Statements consisting only of original research should be removed. November Learn how and when to remove this template message The show addressed social issues of the s such as sexism , sexual attitudes, generational conflict, the economic hardships of the s recession , mistrust of the American government by blue-collar workers , and underage drinking , including teenage drug use.
The series also highlighted developments in the entertainment industry, including the television remote "the clicker" , reruns , VCR , and cable TV ; the video games Pong and Space Invaders ; the cassette tape and Disco ; MAD magazine ; and Eric's obsession with Star Wars.
For example, the dynamic of the relationship between Eric and Donna was altered in later seasons to more closely resemble the relationships of other " power couples " on teen dramas. Likewise, the first season of the show featured a recurring, more dramatic storyline in which the Formans were in danger of losing their home due to Red's hours being cut back at the auto parts plant where he worked.
Storylines in later seasons were generally presented more comically and less dramatically. Series recurring cast member Tanya Roberts also starred in a popular show in the s Charlie's Angels. Beginning with season 5, each episode in the series is named after a song by a rock band that was famous in the s: One character is usually seeking advice on a problem with a character in the second pairing and the other character advises them.
Although the conversations appear to mirror each other, notable differences often occur. It is most often used by the couples of the show, with each member of the couple being advised on the relationship. For example, in the episode " Who Wants It More? Both Jackie and Hyde tell Donna and Eric not to cave or the "caver" will be owned by the other. Dream sequences[ edit ] The show includes character daydream sequences, some of which refer to or parody fads and films of the time, such as Star Wars , Rocky , and Grease.
The character picturing the dream sometimes also narrates it, but regardless, the other characters present see the same dream. In the episode " Stone Cold Crazy ", Jackie mentioned she liked the song playing in Fez's dream sequence.
The sequences are usually introduced by a wobbling screen transition. Sometimes, the transition is absent when the characters who imagine the scene believe they are real for example, Eric's dream about Donna in " Eric's Birthday " or Jackie's dream about Hyde proposing in " It's All Over Now ". In the th episode, " That '70s Musical ", all singing scenes were Fez's dream sequences.
The circle[ edit ] The circle illustrated the teens' marijuana use, usually in Eric's basement. The picture is of the final scene of the series. In the circle, a group of characters, usually the teenagers, sit in a circle generally in Eric's basement, though occasionally elsewhere , as the camera pans, stopping at each character as he or she speaks.
It was usually apparent that the characters are under the influence of marijuana. Thick clouds of smoke, frequent coughing and an extreme wide-angle lens added to the "drug-induced" feel, although the audience never saw anyone actually smoking the drug.
Also, no visible drug-related paraphernalia were seen, such as bongs or joint papers. Characters never spoke the word "marijuana" while in the circle except in one episode " Reefer Madness " , often referring to it as "stuff" or a "stash". In the episode " Bye-Bye Basement ", Theo Leo's cousin refers to "weed"; in " The Relapse ", Kelso tells Fez that the concrete wall behind the gym is used mostly for "smoking weed and beating up freshmen;" in " Ski Trip " Kitty asks Eric why he is taking so much oregano to Jackie's ski lodge; in " Eric's Burger Job ", Kelso blames his "roach clip" when the water bed pops on which he is sitting at a party; in two episodes " That Wrestling Show " and " Hyde Moves In " Eric and Hyde can be seen wearing shirts with the words "Cannabis Sativa" written on a Campbell's soup can; and in " The Pill " Red, referring to Kelso, exclaims, "That kid's on dope!
As the series progressed, the circle became one of the series' recurring features. The only four episodes where the whole gang is in the circle are " Class Picture ", " I'm A Boy ", " Substitute ", and in the series finale. During the eighth and final season, the circle sans smoke replaced the Vista Cruiser as the setting of the opening credits.
The stupid helmet[ edit ] The stupid helmet refers to a replica of a Green Bay Packers helmet that a character is forced to wear after having done or said something deemed stupid by the rest of the gang.
Eric had to wear it when he said he wanted to propose to Donna and Fez wore it when he started banging his head on the table after trying to help Kelso keep Jackie. The helmet can be seen in the Forman basement on a shelf behind the cast. When the series concluded in , the last one up the staircase had to call Red a "dumbass", something he always called the kids. Since Kelso was the last one up, he grabbed the helmet. The water tower[ edit ] In many episodes, the teenaged characters often hang out on a local water tower.
At the end of several water tower segments, at least one character falls off usually Kelso. When Charlie Richardson played by Bret Harrison fell off and died in season 8, the water tower was renamed in his honor. After Charlie's death, Kelso fell off again, but survived, leading him to believe he was "invincible". In the " Water Tower episode ", the gang painted a marijuana leaf on the tower, but it looked more like a green hand giving the finger.
In the episode " The Immigrant Song a. Fez Gets Busted " Kelso paints Jackie and his names on the tower to annoy Hyde just before falling and ending up in the hospital.
During this episode, Fez paints his manhood on the tower but only gets as far as drawing a circle when the police arrive to arrest him. Kelso was known to fall off the water tower once in every grade since middle school. Jackie and Fez share their first official kiss on the tower in the show's finale. Scene transitions[ edit ] In the first season, scene transitions also known as bumpers consisted of animated smiley buttons  or still images of faces from the s with only the mouth moving using Syncro-Vox , usually yelling, in a rock form, "Yeahhh!
Farrah Fawcett saying "Yeah! Sometimes they would be visuals of lava lamps with the show's logo plummeting to the bottom of the screen in front of it. Beginning in season 2, transitions featured the characters doing something in front of a colorful, psychedelic, lava lamp -like background. These transitions featured the most prominent characters of the episode usually dancing, falling or making facial expressions.
The music accompanying these colorful sequences would match the tone of the episode and characters. By the show's final season, new transitions were created to accommodate cast changes e.
Donna's hair color, Leo continuing as a series regular and the insertion of Randy. Tanya Roberts is the only regular actor not to be featured in a transition. For the first seven seasons of the show, the show's introduction showed the cast inside the Vista Cruiser. The show's pronunciation of "Vista Cruiser", with emphasis on "Cruiser" conflicted with the pronunciation of author George Plimpton in the Oldsmobile television advertisement for the Vista Cruiser, where he pronounced the two words with the emphasis on "Vista".
August Learn how and when to remove this template message In one of the show's major running gags , Red often threatens to punish Eric with many variations of catchphrase , "kicking your ass". One where my foot doesn't plow through your ass. Let's hope it doesn't go horribly, horribly wrong!