Scratch This One Off the Bucket List

It’s not the most inspirational item one could have on their bucket list, but it was on mine nonetheless.

And earlier this week, I was able to mark it off as completed.

So you may be curious what it was.

  • parachute out of a plane? nope…
  • meet Bruce Springsteen? nope…
  • put an entire class of students to sleep? nope… (but I’ve gotten close)
  • watch every episode of King of Queens, in order? yes!

The King of Queens is an American television sitcom that ran on CBS from September 21, 1998 to May 14, 2007, a total of nine seasons and 207 episodes.

Yes, that’s right, I watched 207 episodes of the show over the past five months. Like I said, nothing to be proud of. And this is the second time I’ve written about the show.

It started sometime during COVID, I think when we switched to YouTube TV this past summer. With YouTube TV, you just have to pick the show you want to be recorded, and it will go out and find what station(s) the show is on and record it. It then offers the episodes by season for the viewer to watch.

There are lots of TV comedy series that have had better ratings than King of Queens, but for whatever reason, the show resonated with me, and I always found something to laugh about in every episode.

I was already familiar with most of the shows, having watched them either when they first aired or catching a rerun every now and then over the years. It seems to be a staple of cable TV. But just to be sure, I embarked on this bucket list item of watching every episode in order.

Now that I’ve accomplished my goal, I don’t know what to do with all the free time I now seem to have. Maybe the New York Times crossword puzzles

I had often thought the show was a bit like The Honeymooners, one of the early classic sitcoms. This was confirmed for me when one of the episodes (Season 3, Episode 17) paid homage to The Honeymooners. Doug dreams that he is Ralph Kramden, Carrie is Alice Kramden, and Deacon is Ed Norton. The sequence was filmed in black and white, and the audio quality (including audience reactions) matches a 1950s style.

Here is some background on the show, courtesy of my good friend, Wikipedia:

The King of Queens stars Kevin James and Leah Remini as Doug and Carrie Heffernan, a working-class couple living in Rego Park, Queens, New York City. All the episodes were filmed in front of a live studio audience. The ninth and final season concluded with a double-length finale episode, making The King of Queens the last American live-action sitcom that premiered in the 1990s to end its run. During its run, it brought in solid ratings (usually ranking in the Top 40, and peaking at #19 in its fourth season) for the most part and was a Monday night staple. In 2003 the show moved to Wednesday evenings.

The show exhibits undertones of the original 1950s TV production The Honeymooners, starring Jackie Gleason and Audrey Meadows. Doug (Kevin James) and Carrie Heffernan (Leah Remini) are a working-class couple living at “3121 Aberdeen Street” in Rego Park, Queens, New York, along with Carrie’s father, Arthur Spooner (Jerry Stiller). Doug works for the fictional International Parcel Service (IPS) as a delivery driver, while Carrie works as a secretary in Manhattan, first for a law firm and later for a real estate firm. Their lives are plagued by the demands of Arthur; so much so that they eventually hire Holly, a professional dog walker, to spend time with him as she walks dogs in the park. Doug Heffernan represents the “everyman” with his love of sports, TV, junk food, and his wife. His constant deceit and schemes through various situations leave him humiliated as his plans backfire. (sounds a lot like Ralph Kramden…)

I’m sure I’ll still watch an episode now and then, especially when I’m in the mood for a laugh.

But for now, it’s time to think of a 12-letter word for 20 across, “Hoped-for experience at a casino”…

62 thoughts on “Scratch This One Off the Bucket List

  1. I can say that I have never watched one single episode of this. I have heard of it, just never watched it.
    “Everyone Loves Raymond” was one of our favorite comedies. Watched every episode of that and BBT.
    Hmm…so Arthur is a dog? Having to keep an eye on him all the time sounds like another fictional Arthur that I may know. 😂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. One of the most underrated comedy shows of its time! I love King of Queens! I tend to gravitate to realistic representation of a group of people or marriage or family and this show really nailed it and made it hilarious!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I also like the show, though I haven’t caught that many episodes. I like shows with everyday humor that people can relate to.

    By the way, I think I might have the answer to the crossword. The problem is it is three words instead of one. Try it: streak of luck.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My ex enjoyed the show, so I’ve seen quite a few episodes, though it wasn’t my favorite. I always appreciated IPS because my dad was a supervisor for UPS. I did think the dog-walking/Arthur-entertaining angle was kind of funny. But as far as Stiller goes, my favorite performance of his was on Seinfeld, particularly the Festivus episode. “It’s time for the airing of grievances!” That was hilarious.

    Good luck with the crossword. Or finding a new show to binge.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ve never watched the show. It has probably aired here at some point but doesn’t ring any bells. Good luck with the crossword clue! What’s next on your bucket list? Being first in the street to put out the trash every week for a year, maybe?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It’s currently on morning tv here on England. It’s a quality comedy with great writing, and great characters, especially Jerry Stiller whose character cracks me up. It’s a little dated now but still makes me laugh out loud.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I love the episode where Doug shows his wife how to pole dance. In real life, Leah was a “house student” of Sheila Kelly, who pretty much started the whole pole-as-a-workout movement in her house (thus “house student”).

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I have finally joined the “craze” of binge watching since streaming services have made it so darn easy! I started with House of Cards and have since moved on to Orange is the New Black.

    FYI I’ve restarted an old blog that should publish the third in a series I wrote around the recent passing of Norm Macdonald. That one talks about one of my favorite but no longer airing sitcoms. Here’s the link to the first post in the series.

    I’m so old I thought Norm Crosby had passed, not MacDonald!

    Liked by 1 person

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