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Slimed!: An Oral History of Nickelodeon’s Golden Age Hardcover – September 24, 2013

4.1 out of 5 stars 111 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"While this is a book you can fit in your purse, and while the cover is a happy mixture of the classic Nickelodeon lime green and bright orange, it's filled with a lot more than nostalgia ... And while SLIMED! is certainly fun, especially for readers who grew up watching these shows, it also provides a serious lesson on the birth of cable television."
--Kirkus Reviews


"SLIMED! explores the behind-the-scenes drama of controversial shows like Ren & Stimpy and the family lives of its child stars, but it also reveals the network's unconventional programming and knack for recruiting up-and-coming talent (Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins was on the writing staff for Clarissa Explains It All)--as well as the secret ingredients to the network's famous green slime."
--The Atlantic, Fall Books Preview

"Culture isn't all serious business--sometimes it's just good fun."
--Publisher's Weekly, Top 10 Social Sciences pick

"Reading SLIMED! is like taking a trip back to summer camp to see your old friends. Mathew Klickstein has captured the outrageous, inventive, and crazy times of early Nickelodeon, and the stories are sweeter than a mug of bug juice. A nation of Nick fans will salute his shorts."
--Steve Slavkin, creator of Salute Your Shorts

"Somewhere between a tribute, a belated yearbook, and an autopsy, SLIMED! attempts to figure out--with the help of nearly 200 performers, writers, producers, and execs who worked at the network between 1985 and 2000--how a fledgling channel with virtually no original programming identified, captured, and entertained the hell out of its preteen demographic.... SLIMED! is the best kind of blast from the past: dishy, unwholesome, and thought-provoking enough to make you question your own memories."
--The Village Voice


"Klickstein provides a bracing oral history of Nickelodeon in the 1990s, the era of shows like Ren & Stimpy and Clarissa Explains It All."
--Entertainment Weekly, Top Four Tell-All Books Of Year

"Mathew Klickstein’s oral history SLIMED!… does a wonderful job of reliving those times through interviews, photos, and assorted behind-the-scenes details. The book truly defines the joy one felt to be a 'Nick kid' and brings a heaping dose of nostalgia along with it."
--Parade Magazine, Top 25 Books About Movies/TV

"The book is quite impressive. Mathew Klickstein must have a large multi Gigabyte RAM in his head to remember all those quotes and sort them into a meaningful book. Or at least he must be very well organized. Well done."
--Roger Price, creator of You Can't Do That on Television and green slime

"Mathew Klickstein has written what is quite possibly the first serious pop culture book of our generation."
--The Loafer

"It's the inside story of the popular kids' channel and is full of fun anecdotes and interesting facts about the network (it coined the word 'tween'), its cast and crew members, plus the aforementioned slime recipe."
--The Hollywood Reporter

"SLIMED! digs deep into the depths of Nickelodeon's 'Golden Age' with interviews and fun facts."
--Huffington Post

"To anyone being raised in the 90s, whether as a kid or teenager, the new book SLIMED! An Oral History of Nickelodeon's Golden Age is an excellent nostalgia trip."
--Bi**h Magazine

"SLIMED! An Oral History of Nickelodeon's Golden Age, by Mathew Klickstein, is an in-depth oral history that includes the genesis of the channel's brand and many of its iconic shows."
--OK! Magazine

About the Author


Mathew Klickstein's 
writing has appeared in such publications as WiredNew York Daily News and Splitsider. He is the author of such books as SLIMED! An Oral History of Nickelodeon's Golden Age and he is the screenwriter of Sony Pictures' Against the Dark, starring Steven Seagal. He currently hosts the podcast NERTZ and is directing/producing the forthcoming documentary about Marc Summers, On Your Marc. He aspires to get some sleep some day soon.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Plume; 1st edition (September 24, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0142196851
  • ISBN-13: 978-0142196854
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (111 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,598 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
When I read a few months ago about a book about Nickelodeon's golden age was to be released, I was extremely excited. As a huge fan of Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Salute Your Shorts, and Hey Dude, I couldn't wait to read anecdotes from the set, behind-the-scenes tidbits previously unknown, and get a first-hand account of the making of these shows, among others.

Instead, what I get is a lazily thrown together book, jumping around from actor to actor and show to show without any rhyme or reason talking about a variety of things, be it from slime, to treatment of children on set, to show moms, to weird stories about pre-pubescence... which is all well and good, but when there's no transition from actor, to show, to topic, I had no clue when one topic ended and another was supposed to begin.

Perhaps, if the book were organized differently, broken down by show instead of these pointless chapters which stay on topic for a couple of pages and then wander into totally different territory, I'd have enjoyed it more. There's also no overview or narration as to the topic the actors/creators are supposed to be discussing or where and in what context the quotes are being made. The book also makes the assumption that you know who all of these people are by diving right into quotes with the person's name (the book is just a compilation of quotes, aside from the foreword by Marc Summers). I didn't realize until after reading that the compilation of all of the people quoted and where their involvement lied in Nickelodeon is at the end of the book. Probably would've helped to have that up front.

I really wanted to like this book, and some of the anecdotes are interesting, but I can't recommend this book for any fan of Nickelodeon in the '90s. It's not what I'd hoped for or expected and Nickelodeon fans deserve better.
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Format: Hardcover
As a child, there were few theme songs that carried as much emotional weight as those of The Adventures of Pete and Pete and Ren & Stimpy. This reaction wasn't so much based on the groovy melodies or the beat (though both contained a little of each). No--my blissful heartstrings twanging in harmony with those songs came entirely from the fact that they were the opening of the gates to a half hour of humorous insanity. Those were my two favorites. For other kids, it was Clarissa Explains It All or the dulcet tones of Doug, Rugrats, or Salute Your Shorts. Nickelodeon, with its initial "us versus them" attitudes of kids and parents held a very important place for people of my generation.

The belief that Nickelodeon defined us is no hyperbole. It was the first time that an entire television station was dedicated to children's programming. And the purity and earnestness of those first golden years is perfectly encapsulated in Mathew Klickstein's labor of love, Slimed! An Oral History of Nickelodeon's Golden Age. More than just telling the stories as they objectively happened, Mr. Klickstein interviewed the people who made Nickelodeon possible: from actors to writers to animators, directors and producers. The immense amount of history here is impressive in and of itself, but Klickstein's care and tenderness for the subject makes this collection of reminiscences impossible to put down.

By care and tenderness, I don't just mean the mere ability to record and transcribe the dozens of interviews and put them together in some way that is comprehensible. That alone isn't enough for Slimed! Klickstein knows his audience, and has somehow found a way to ask questions of his interviewees that perhaps the reader didn't even know they wanted to know.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The subtitle of this book is "An Oral History of Nickelodeon's Golden Age", but the author never clearly defines what he considers the "Golden Age". Personally, when I look back on my childhood memories of Nick (I'm 29) shows like All That, Kenan & Kel, GUTS, Get the Picture, Figure it Out, Legends of the Hidden Temple all come to mind.

However, these shows are either not mentioned at all, or get a cursory note. Also, hope you didn't like any Nicktoons besides Doug, Rugrats, and Ren and Stimpy, because those aren't here either.

It's also very odd to me (on the Kindle version at least) that the author does not identify who each specific speaker is. In most oral histories I've read, at least the first time someone is introduced there's some brief history about what that individual contributed to the show. In here, there's nothing. While I realize this book is for a very niche set of individuals, to think I remembered the actor's name who played Z.Z. Zif on Salute Your Shorts, let alone know the names of any of production staff behind the shows seems a bit odd. Google was my friend as I was figuring it out who everyone was.

However, even though this has been negative so far, what the book does, it does well. I learned so many crazy tidbits about shows like Salute Your Shorts (Donkeylips' actually did break the fishing rod in the intro to the show), Pete & Pete (the actors didn't even wear makeup the first few seasons) and Double Dare (Marc Summers says the whole OCD thing has been blown way out of proportion). The stories for shows like You Can't Do That on Television that I personally was not into make me want to go back and watch a few episodes.

Overall, I would definitely recommend, but it's sad what isn't here. Maybe the author is holding out for a sequel?
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