American Family: Anniversary Edition
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It's often erroneously stated that Lance was the first openly gay person on nationwide TV. Although that was never made explicit, it's not difficult to read between the lines. And his family was completely accepting of him -- including his father, who was something of a macho type (he owned a company that sold replacement parts for heavy machinery). Bill's obvious affection for Lance is, to use an old-fashioned word, heartwarming.
This is often considered the first reality show. The difference is that it's real reality, unlike the scripted, manipulated kind all too common in today's shows of that description. Viewing it today, I find it just as engrossing as it was way back when. Highly recommended.
I'll skip this and wait for the real thing.
For the 40th anniversary of the show, WNET worked with the Raymonds to re-edit the 12 hours of film down to 1 hour and 50 minutes. The show aired earlier this year on PBS and is now on this DVD. 53 minutes of Bonus features are here too including an archival panel discussion from 1973 lead by Margaret Mead and new interviews with NET and WNET personnel - including the Raymonds.
It's a fascinating story , though, like a previous reviewer, I felt that it worked best in the longer chapter-ized version, which allowed things to be revealed at closer to real time. But this is still better than nothing. And the additional interviews add more perspective to the story. After all, this was a FIRST for NET - a real series.
The show was shot on film and it shows some age. Those used to the crisp images on TV today will have to settle for some graniness.Read more ›
Nonetheless, for the uninitiated to the series, it is still a worthy foray into the show with some engaging interviews and background into the show, its historical significance, and its impact on reality television to this day. For more information about the series itself, please check my review on "An American Family"--a plea to the powers that be at PBS or elsewhere to transfer this seminal television artifact to DVD for all to enjoy.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Delivry was timely and article arrived in good shape. Item was exactly as advertised. Great product. Makes a good impression on others who see it. Read morePublished 3 months ago by John R.
This is like a long preview for the real series. I would prefer the whole series if ever available.
Reality TV in the seventies... Read more
This was not well described. It is not the entire series but a "best of" collection which wasn't clearly outlined in the product description.Published on October 6, 2013 by Jacqueline Matreci
In 1971, all PBS tried to do was set up mics, lights, and keep rolling for several months. This large "rich liberal suburban" family is a rare snapshot of the times. Read morePublished on October 15, 2012 by mr. contrarian