It starts when we’re young, I think, and continues through our lives. That great new baseball glove, we’re encouraged to believe (and are eager to go along with it), will make us far better players. That new car will make us so much more attractive to the opposite sex. That new word processor will bring our writing into a whole new realm of coherence and literacy.
I should say firstly that it is perhaps my favorite television show. It’s one of the best regarded shows in the history of American television, and that is not an exaggeration. It also was able to transcend the somewhat niche quality of Star Trek, and of science fiction more generally. It still has one glaring flaw.
In March 1981 a moderately successful television program premiered on ABC. “The Greatest American Hero” was a semi-spoof superhero show that ran for three seasons, neither a huge hit nor a bomb.