By Terry Kelleher
August 25, 2003 12:00 PM

VH1 (Mon.-Fri., Aug. 18-22, 9 p.m. ET)

Critic’s Choice

It’s too easy to make sport of the 1970s, the decade of Pet Rocks, Pong and polyester. But in the dog days of summer, who wants to do anything hard?

Like last year’s I Love the ’80s on VH1, this five-night, 10-hour, year-by-year survey stresses pop culture, fashion and fads, slighting matters of true historic significance. Yeah, so what? It’s fast-paced fun. Deftly edited clips from TV and movies are interwoven with comments by a motley crew of talking heads. Some, like Lisa Marie Presley, have nothing interesting to say, but I Love the ’70s is rarely dull for more than a moment. Michael Ian Black (Ed), Greg Proops (Whose Line Is It Anyway?) and comic Greg Fitzsimmons bring wit to the party, and The Daily Show’s Mo Rocca has the best lines of the bunch. “Earth, Wind & Fire had all the elements,” he notes. “Except for water.” If you laugh at the thought of macho man Erik Estrada naming each year’s foxiest ladies (“Chris Evert, forehand fox!”), don’t miss this time trip.

BOTTOM LINE: Leisure-suited lark