Discover the most popular TV show the year you were born

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INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MAY 24: Jim Nabors waves to the crowd during the Indianapolis 500 parade on May 24, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

1968: Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.

Let’s take a trip back to a simpler time in television, back when colored TV was just becoming the norm. Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. originally aired on CBS from 1964 to 1969, and was a spin-off of the very popular series, The Andy Griffith Show. The show ranked in the top 10 of the Nielsen ratings charts for its entire five-season run, never dipping below the tenth spot, and ended as the second-highest-rated series in the US.

The show was about Gomer Pyle, a naive gas station attendant in the small town of Mayberry, North Carolina, who enlists in the U.S. Marines. The series followed the series of misadventures the bumbling Pyle faced during his time in the Marines, especially in the face of his short-fused Sergeant, Vince Carter.

Over the years, Gomer Pyle has remained popular thanks to reruns on TV and the release of the series on DVD. The show was also popular among actual US military officials, who felt the series was good for their image. In 2001, the U.S. Marines even honored the show’s star Jim Nabors, with an honorary promotion to Lance Corporal (Gomer’s highest ranking was Private First Class). In 2007, he was honored again, this time with an honorary promotion to Corporal.