Small Wonder – Was That Real?

One of the worst TV shows of all time? The Nostalgia Critic takes a look at the 1980’s television show Small Wonder on this episode of Was That Real?

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About Doug Walker

Creator of 5 Second Movies, Nostalgia Critic, Bum Reviews and more.

183 comments

  1. I remember this show well, mainly because of the dreaded “drugs” episode. The robot girl bought drugs from a high school drug dealer. So the little girl robot got high. And then they had a big police sting at the end involving a robot, using actual children on a playground, and cops hiding behind the bushes to take down a high school pot seller.

    It was after seeing that episode I got the drugs talk from my parents. An awkward afternoon all the way around.

    • I’ve never even heard of this show. That might have something to do with growing up in the Netherlands that at that time was only just starting to import American TV.
      It looks very very strange, and interesting in that aspect. It definitely has a unique shine to it.

  2. I see two errors on writing.

    Change Shoes to Shows & change worst to best.

  3. I kind of remember this show. Don’t recall it that well, though this review does reveal just how weird it was.

    Gotta say, Data made for a better “android exploring human behavior” than Vicky did.

  4. For all of its faults, it was still a better show than Mama’s Family.

  5. This is Kristen Bell’s favorite show:

    https://youtu.be/-loVrmwxcrI?t=3m56s

  6. Just wait till it’s remade one day!!!!

  7. Worst show ever?… No… Because I watched both episodes of Work It. (Admittedly I didn’t see the episodes that only aired in Finland, so I can’t testify to their quality… but I can guess.)

  8. Wow a TV “shoe”? This will be interesting

  9. Hi Doug Walker and Channel Awesome Team! Thank you very much for all of the entertainment you provide for us. And may I please request a movie to do a Nostalgia Critic review on? Can you please do a Nostalgia Critic review on the movie “Freddie As F.R.O.7”? There are so many things wrong with the movie and so many scenes to make fun of.

  10. Having never heard of this show before, reading the text below the video led me to believe it was a cartoon about a shoe.

  11. It’s been at least 20 years to my knowledge that I last saw an episode of the show. Don’t remember much.

  12. I demand a gritty movie-reboot of Small Wonder.

  13. It’s on Antenna TV on the weekends. Candace Cameron from Full House auditioned for the role and thank God she didn’t get the role as Vicki.

    • On a Family Guy DVD commentary track, Seth Green mentioned that he auditioned for the role of the boy but didn’t get it. Seth MacFarlane replied that that was just like the time he missed his flight on 9/11.

  14. Growing up in the 80s, I remember watching this a lot as a kid. Like Full House, I knew it was stupid but it was entertaining enough to pass the time. I kind of put it together with another weird sitcom from around the same time, Out of this World. That one was about a girl who was half alien and could stop time. It kind of sounds cooler than it was. And I’m pretty sure there was a wacky neighbor, because 80s sitcom.

    Can’t decide if it’s sad or awesome I remember this shit.

  15. I confess as a kid, I only watched this show as a kid because I had a massive crush on Vicki the Robot. Something about her robotic voice was just…. <3

  16. Who is more annoying Vicki The Robot or Michelle from Full House?

    • Vicky was sometimes funny in her role as the straight man. Michelle was funny maybe the first time she said one of her catch phrases.

      So definitely Michelle.

  17. ShadowsTwilight

    Speaking of Ronald McDonald House, have you ever seen the Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald? I always thought it would be interesting to see that review.

  18. It ain’t always for kids?
    It ain’t always for adults?

    So it is for teenagers or even the whole family. Don’t forget, that’s a category too.

  19. I remember this show from my childhood used to like watching it…. In a “there’s nothing else right now on Saturday morning” sort-of way. I wouldn’t say the show is “terrible” but certainly “not good” which is odd to say since most shows from my childhood I enjoy on some level or another.

    One episode that sticks out to me is one where Vicky was malfunctioning or otherwise out of operation but for one reason or another needed to be in order to… I dunno? Impress a robotics maker or convince a CPS agent that Vikcy was human and well cared for or something? Anyway, the son had to dress up as Vicky and stand-in for her during the encounter.

  20. I watched this show back when I was a kid. Not all of them but just enough. I remember the talent show one as well as the robot boy one. It was a cheesy show indeed but that’s the 80’s for ya. 😛

  21. So it redeemed itself by living up to its low standards. So it’s like Arnold Rimmer vs. the Inquisitor.
    Also, I’m not gonna lie – I did laugh at some of those clips.

  22. Say what you will about Small Wonder, at least most of the time (save for the occasional “special” episode) they were aiming for comedy, which is what a sitcom is supposed to do. Compare that to shows like Diff’rent Strokes, Webster or Punky Brewster-shows that called themselves “sitcoms” yet had something serious happen in almost every episode. I’ll take Small Wonder over *those* shows any day. At least that show was actually fun.

  23. Glad to see Rap Critic getting plugged. Though I wish I could watch his plug video.

  24. I also remember this show well.

    I also remember something similar called Down to Earth, and Hi, Honey. I’m Home, as well.

    • SchrodingersCat

      I don’t remember either of those two, but I do remember a short-lived ’80s show that was called Hard Time on Planet Earth.
      It was about a hardened alien criminal, who (as punishment for his crimes) is sentenced to live on Earth, in a human body (for an unknown period of time), until his sentence is served.
      The alien judges assign him a sort-of robot parole officer to watch him on Earth, who bears an uncanny resemblance to Skeets, from the Booster Gold comic book series.

  25. It kinda feels a bit like a ripoff of the manga Dr. Slump from Akira Toriyama (1980)… Show came out in 1985, so five years later… 😛

    • Yeah, I got the same vibe. The thing about Dr. Slump, though, is that it’s legitimately funny throughout instead of kinda-sorta funny like the Critic says here. Then again, I’m a biased Toriyama fanboy so maybe my opinion shouldn’t count, haha.

  26. I remember this show as a kid and looking at it now, yeah, it’s pretty brutal.

    The sweet little girl robot in “Tomorrowland” self-destructs, but this one goes on for four years?

  27. SchrodingersCat

    I don’t remember this show at all (and I lived through the entire ’80s).
    Maybe it was because that at our house, we were busy watching shows like Punky Brewster, Perfect Strangers, Family Ties, The Cosby Show, and Star Trek: TNG, instead.

    I DO remember remote-controlled toy cats, though.
    I had a grey one (about the size of a real cat) with a round body, which moved on command when you clapped.
    They were really popular for awhile.
    What were they called?
    Does anyone remember?

  28. I think that part of the reason the show lasted 4 years was because it was syndicated. If it was on network TV it wouldn’t have lasted a full season I don’t think. Another example of a syndicated series that lasted the same amount of time was Out of This World, which was a sitcom about a teenage girl who was half alien half human. You should do a WTR about that one too.

    • The Movie Explorer

      There were a few series that had short-runs on networks that later ran for ages and ages in syndication. Charles in Charge and It’s a Living come to mind. I can’t think of many examples of syndicated shows that were later picked up by networks, apart from maybe Mr. Ed.

    • omg I used to love Out of this World! That was my fav show for awhile. Shows that I was a sci-fi nerd back then too lol Nerd for life!

  29. I don’t get the joke, “You couldn’t leave good enough alone” is that what the man said?

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