32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
Still fascinates after all these years.,
This review is from: American Family: Anniversary Edition (DVD)
This DVD presents highlights of the 12-part series that became one of the most talked about television programs in America in 1973 -- perhaps in the entire decade. "An American Family" moved cameras into the California home of Bill and Pat Loud and their five children. (Lance, the oldest child, lived in New York for a time; Pat's visit to him there is one of the most memorable sequences of the series.) Eventually Bill and Pat separated -- an event shown on camera -- but remained friends (difficult, but, as these people proved, not impossible). They continued to care for each other and for their children.
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 hard 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 wonderful to see.
This is often considered the first reality show. The difference is that it's real reality, unlike the manipulated "reality" 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.