America in Primetime
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The series is divided into chapter on the "man of the house" (from "Father Kows Best" to "All in the Family" to Tony on "The Sopranos"), "The Independent Woman" (from Lucy and Mary Tyler Moore to Roseanne and on to "The Good Wife", "Desperate Housewives" and "Weeds"0, "The Misfits ("Taxi", "The Office", "30 Rock" and "Glee") and "The Crusader" (from Joe Friday on "Dragnet" to "Homicide: Life on The Street", "NYPD Blue" and on to "Dexter" - with sops at "MASH" and "Superman").
There are many interviews with actors, directors and writers (and Rob Reiner fills all three shoes) as well as short clips. The story is interesting and will certainly appeal to pop culture folks (of which I count myself among them.)
There are few weakness which resulted in my four star rating.Read more ›
This set is broken down into four parts:
1. The evolution of men on the small screen, beginning with the stereotypical Father Knows Best and coming to rest on more complex males such as those in Breaking Bad, The Wire, or Mad Men.
2. The ever-changing role of women on television, from the "happy homemaker" days of June Cleaver to the pill-popping Nurse Jackie and the gals of Sex and the City.
3. The "outcasts", or those who never quite fit in (e.g. the Dwight Schrutes or Ugly Bettys of the TV landscape). An interesting discussion ensues surrounding why exactly these figures are so prevalent on television.
4. The crusaders (like Jack Bauer or Fox Mulder) who exhibit stoic traits such as persistence, loyalty, and integrity.
This is a fun little set to watch because, let's face it...those of us who are serious about our TV viewing (and if you aren't, you aren't considering this collection to begin with) like to revel in the nostalgia and memories of all our favorite shows both past and present.
I can't give the series a full five stars because, in all seriousness, I'm not sure that the deep societal issues pondering by the filmmakers are truly the driving force behind each show (e.g. is True Blood really an allegory on the human condition, or is it an excuse to show half-naked vampires getting it on?). However, "America In Primetime" does make enough sentient points to keep you engaged throughout.
"America in Primetime" is entertaining and educational, and an insightful look into the medium of narrative television. If you want an idea of what this documentary series is like, then check out this article featuring a segment from "America in Primetime" discussing the impact of David Lynch's influential 90's TV Series "Twin Peaks":
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Limited selection of shows... does show impact of cable. Denies mentioning that cable is a commercial transaction... Read morePublished 5 months ago by R. martin
If you don't see this you will miss out on a wonderful experience. The documentary tracks TV from the post WWII era to the present day and if you were watching over the decades... Read morePublished on December 10, 2012 by Peejay