Join the Circle at the Water Tower and try to avoid wearing the Stupid Helmet (Go Packers!) as all eight seasons of That ’70s Show are now available for an immediate Netflix nostalgia kick. Point Place, Wisconsin just isn’t the same (it’s now completely nonexistent, actually) now that Eric (Topher Grace), Jackie (Mila Kunis), Michael (Ashton Kutcher), Steven (Danny Masterson), Donna (Laura Prepon) and Fez (Wilder Valderrama) have all moved on and presumably entered the 21st century, but their various exploits were well-documented on this clever, witty and often very strange sitcom that chronicled the life and times of a group of teenagers as they experience the hot-button topics of ’70s America such as feminism, sexual attitudes, the aftermath of Watergate and Vietnam, rampant drug use and, of course, Star Wars. All of the young actors are terrific, particularly Grace as the gang’s (usually) calm moral center, though it’s Kurtwood Smith who never failed to steal an episode as Red Forman, Eric’s alpha male war hero father who’s really just an old softie; seeing the villainous Clarence Boddicker from RoboCop as a suburban ’70s dad is just one of the series’ many surreal elements, along with frequent use of split screens and often very elaborate dream sequences. We may never know what country Fez is actually from, but we can certainly ponder forever.
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