Television footage shifting from black-and-white to color was huge and Australia certainly pulled out all stops to make their iconic.
All of us are familiar with the fact that television transitioned from black and white to color at some point in the 20th century in all countries. But did we just magically transition from black and white one fine day or was it a gradual shift? And if we did magically shift from black and white to color, how did it actually happen? Was there a drumroll, a plain news-like announcement, or something more dramatic? Well, a historical video on X posted by @historyinmemes reveals the answer to all these questions, at least for Norway and Australia and we are gearing towards a splendid and exaggerated change from sophisticated black and white to awe-inspiring color. Although a lot of us might not have witnessed it firsthand, it’s equally amazing to witness it right now as well.
Sure beats Norway’s change. 🎨 pic.twitter.com/nGCLHRlU3J— Elias Eriksen (@Erik_Eliassen) May 2, 2023
In 1972, in Norway, television changed from black and white to color on a live broadcast. It all started with what looked like a simple ribbon-cutting ceremony. A man stood close to a gigantic rope tied like a ribbon with a cushion. He also had a big pair of scissors and looked ready to stab the cushion with it, but went for the rope instead. Right when he was about to cut the rope, another man came into the picture and took the scissors and the cushion away from him and threw them away. He directed the man to pull the rope from one end while he pulled the other. As the rope came apart, the scene suddenly turned colorful, marking the beginning of color television in Norway.
Australia changes to color television live on March 1, 1975 pic.twitter.com/cyGElBLMTK— Historic Vids (@historyinmemes) May 2, 2023
Australia’s entry into the color television scene in 1975 was even more dramatic. In a show, the characters scream that the color is leaking and they should try to hold it in as much as they can. One character even chimes in to say that they should mind the carpet. As one of them tries to “hold off” the leaking color, another one comes swimming into the scene through the color that has already managed to go past the window. The scene is gradually becoming colorful as the characters on screen struggle to breathe in their new multicolor forms. One character gives up and embraces the color and another tries to hold off even further as the historical moment takes place. This video has been recently doing the rounds on X and has gone quite viral with over 27 million views.
I Always used to think the world was black and white and suddenly colors came— Raveen K Pai (@PaiRaveen) May 2, 2023
Damn I didn’t know changing to color TV was like, an event. I assumed it was gradual— DreamLeaf 🌻 🍉 (@DreamLeaf5) May 2, 2023
After witnessing Norway and Australia’s changes, many people wanted to see what other countries' changes to color television looked like. A few others were quite surprised that Australia got color television years after the US. Other people said that they didn’t know that the change was such a big event. This just goes to show that there are moments in history that don't seem that big now but were a massive shift for people when they happened. Color television was a massive and expensive shift for many people and television stations, which had to buy expensive equipment to make the shift possible. Considering the eyeballs it is grabbing right now, the moment television changed into color in Australia surely lived up to the dramatic effect it was made for.