Dave Draper and the Monkees

I think every lifter has a story about the first time they became fascinated with weightlifting. For Arnold it was pictures of Reg Park as Hercules. For most young lifters nowadays chances are movies or social media are the sources of inspiration.

Oddly enough, despite being born in the 90s, the first recollection I have of weightlifting and physical culture came from a 1960s TV show! Sat in front of old and somewhat kitchy selection of reruns, my young mind encountered The Monkees, the 1960s American TV show featuring as you may have guessed, The Monkees musical group.

Well in 1968, The Monkees’ second season centred entirely around physical culture. Impressed by the musculature of the ‘Blond Bomber’ Dave Draper, the group took to physical culture exercises with varying results.

Quite remarkably, the episode is online thanks to MisterMusicMan382’s Youtube channel. A couple of things come to mind re-watching the episode nowadays. First that even back then people were cynical about the great array of exercise systems on the market. Second that men have been insecure about their bodies for eons and finally that old school comedy, although cheesy, is downright fun.