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Commentary : SURVIVING SUMMERTIME TV IN STYLE

July 25, 1993|JUDITH LAZARUS | Judith Lazarus is a Los Angeles-based free-lance writer

If the thought of summer reruns has you down in the dumps, try a new attitude. Get into the spirit by dressing and dining for the occasion. Here's a hot couch potato's guide.

Roseanne: Put on a big grin and a big shirt from K-mart; threaten to change. Slurp up loose meat, liquid cheese, white bread and pork chops. You'll need lots of dessert--anything but humble pie.

Gilligan's Island: Dig out those old clam-diggers and throw on your shirt with the most holes. (Virgos with no raggedy tops can substitute a B.U.M. sweatshirt.) Prepare any fresh ocean fish along with canned vegetables for a casual supper.

Beverly Hills, 90210: Top with a crop, lie down and zip into tight jeans (may substitute leggings). Accessorize with the biggest earrings you can handle without falling off the couch when you lean over for your Evian and salad, no dressing. (If you've opted for leggings with elastic waist, you may add fries.)

All Your Other Worlds: Using vacation week to catch up on the soaps? Sweep onto your chaise lounge wearing a Barbara Cartlandesque peignor set--the more boa the better. Required accessories: Kleenex, a can of hair spray and a vase of fresh flowers. No real food allowed, just a box of chocolates and a bottle of wine.

Home Improvement: A tool belt, natch. Chili for dinner.

Seinfeld: Wear nothing. Send out for Chinese or deli.

Cheers: Wear whatever you want (unless you've succumbed to the crass materialism of airport gift shops and actually own a Cheers shirt), but keep those pitchers full of beer and those bowls full of cocktail munchies.

Murphy Brown: Designer blazer, tastefully cut Levi's, Cole Hahn loafers, Sophia Loren eyewear, African-art craft necklace. Must-haves nearby: legal pad and 12 sharp pencils; Betsy-Wetsy doll; blow-up man doll wearing overalls, one shoulder undone (may substitute paint chips). Make any sandwich and name it after your favorite newscaster.

Get Smart: Sherlock Holmes cape, phone shoes. On the side: a magnifying glass. For dinner? Red herring.

Northern Exposure: Turn up the air conditioner--you'll need it while you're wearing a turtleneck, flannel shirt, parka and moon boots. Snack on pancakes, sausages and gallons of coffee; for dessert, chocolate mousse or Baked Alaska.

The Wonder Years: Poodle skirt, matching sweater and cardigan, bobby socks and black-and-white oxfords. To be really "in," you must find one of those little chain slips that holds the top of the sweater together without the button, and sport a charm bracelet. De rigueur for dinner: barbecued hamburgers and hot dogs--hold the Grey Poupon.

Designing Women: Nicole Miller, Carole Little and Southern fried chicken.

The Donna Reed Show: Aawww, you guessed: shirtwaist, pearls, pumps. The smell from the kitchen is--what else?--meat, potatoes and apple pie. Sit up straight and do needlepoint while you watch.

Any old movie: Well-worn PJs, chenille bathrobe, bunny slippers, a big bowl of popcorn and Classic Coke.

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