After some discussion about whether a certain conference has “jumped the shark,” I was inspired to create an animated GIF of Fonzie’s legendary water skiing jump over an ostensibly man-eating shark in a 1977 episode of Happy Days, which, to some observers, signaled the beginning of the venerable sit-com’s steady decline and which inspired the very useful notion of “jumping the shark.” Here’s my first stab:
This is a big file, around 5MBs so not necessarily all that useful and it’s long. I felt the shark was essential and I didn’t really want to re-edit Happy Days so I included a fairly long portion of the jump sequence. In playing around with individual shots from the water skiing scene, I came up with this version where Fonzie skis and skis on forever, unconcerned with sharks or his show’s hearty embrace of the absurd and implausible, like the idea that someone “cool” would water-ski in a bomber jacket:
After I shared these on Twitter, the inimitable Scott Leslie, with whom I had the aforementioned discussion about that certain conference (which I’m not convicted has shark-jumped, fwiw), created two shorter versions from my original:
So there you have it: an iconic TV moment ad infinitum and some collaborative GIF-ing. DS106 4 life, bucko!
Michael Branson Smith added this to the mix: “Megaladon eats the idiom . . . never ‘jump the shark!’”
On this day..
- Reading is Delicious - 2005