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We're in a new Golden Age of Television: who agrees?

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Showing 1-25 of 94 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 16, 2012, 4:58:45 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
I maintain we're in a new Golden Age of Television and have been for some time. We're see mini series of top quality, with motion picture level production values and acting and directing. And weekly series now are original, surprising, and in some cases astonishing.
When did it start?
As I look back, I think I became conscious of it
with Six Feet Under and Deadwood ---- that something remarkable was happening.
Deadwood pulled me in with Shakespearean quality acting.

When it comes to weekly series I've caught up slowly,
amazed at the inventiveness I'm seeing all around me.
Shows like Hell on Wheels, and Boss just didn't exist in the past, and even the more routine shows, White Collar, Perception, Person of Interest, reveal remarkable inventiveness.

I fear I've missed some of the transitional shows, now gone, that started this new Golden Age.
What do you think?
What the first really shocking new mini series of weekly series that you saw which seems beyond belief for TV?
Was it Pushing Daisies?

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:02:46 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
Perhaps The Sopranos ought to be given credit for changing TV dramatically.
I remember how daring it was when it first premiered.
Seems to me Breaking Bad is essentially doing the same thing: taking criminals that
we normally only see in genre shows (bad guys on Law and Order) and doing the back story
on them seriously and without irony. Suddenly we're empathizing with mafia bosses
and meth cookers.

Maybe the key to understanding the great changes we have seen in television is
that this is the era of the back story, period.

Think about it.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:26:07 PM PST
Eric Fox says:
I agree hbo did this but i think it was OZ. Have you seen those? All 6 seasons were great you will love.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:28:11 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
Glad you brought this up. I did NOT see OZ, but I remember people talking
about it, trying to convey how amazing it was. I'm going to order it on Instant Video.
Time to look at it.

I also remember when Alan Ball went to HBO to do Six Feet Under ---how much
talk there was of a celebrated film director daring to move to TV.

But I think you're right. It was happening with OZ.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:29:54 PM PST
There were Roots, Shogun, and much later Six Feet Under, and later still, the Tudors. I often wonder if Lucille Ball did I Love Lucy how would the series fit? It's too bad she isn't alive to see this golden age of television. The Golden Age of Television really had started with Roots with superb acting and then later, Shogun that had a profound effect on how a novel turned to a mini-series and it's unique storyline.

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:30:04 PM PST
Eric Fox says:
six feet deep was great and our jersey mafioso's but the tourch has been shared with AMC breaking bad mad men and waking dead are WOW!

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:30:28 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 16, 2012, 5:32:04 PM PST
"Queer As Folk" deserves mention, I think. While the series was first done in the UK, it only lasted two seasons for a total of 6 episodes. When Showtime did it, they expanded it quite a bit and developed an intriguing storyline that hooked a lot of people who couldn't have cared less about gay people before the series. Recent favorites include "John Doe", "Eli Stone", "Merlin", "The Dresden Files", and "New Amsterdam".

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:32:09 PM PST
Eric Fox says:
aww shogun what blood!!!!! loved it hard to find dvd

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:34:48 PM PST
I also agree HBO played a big part. The Sopranos, Oz and, on a different note, Sex and the City where must see TV for me every week.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:35:18 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
I think Roots and Shogun were terrific, but they came before
what I'd call the new Golden Age. They were exceptional.
And there were any number of very high productive value mini series,
but it was never, I don't think, a sure trend.
One problem too was that we were still in the world of VHS then
and they'd hack mini series to pieces to fit them on tape.
For a long time you couldn't obtain a really complete recording of Shogun
so after a first run and second run, mini series didn't endure as art --- atleast
not that I saw.

But you're right, those were terrific series, and they ought to have changed the game.
But I don't think they did.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:35:57 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
I agree with you. I was very impressed with Queer as Folk, and
remained involved with a long time.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:36:36 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
Sex and the City --- yes. There was something wholly original all right,
that had everyone talking --- something that wouldn't have been possible in the earlier days.

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:38:49 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
Maybe it was HBO alone that changed the name of the game.
If so, I'd say it took time. It pioneered with shows like OZ and
then with other game changer shows.

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:39:53 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
When it comes to weekly series and how they began to change,
did The Closer break new ground? I remember how impressed I was when I
first saw it, how surprising and clever it was, and with episode after episode it developed
more richly than any other show I'd seen.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:42:46 PM PST

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:44:39 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
When did you feel the world of TV change?
Or did you?

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:45:06 PM PST
Eric Fox says:
Showtime tried to pioneer with red shoe but it was to progressive to European with its sexuality to hit mainstream

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:46:29 PM PST
Eric Fox says:
I think Gen x caused the change due to MTV influence

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:47:28 PM PST
C says:
I understand what you are saying about tv....but I have to give mention here to the show Homicide back when...the way they shot the show was amazing...the grittiness of it and the different camera angles they would use...going back and forth quickly to evoke was groundbreaking for a crime drama back then. I love tv reality shows (hate them). I love stuff we are doing here in the states as well as stuff the BBC puts out....Downton Abbey, MI-5, etc. TV has surely come a long way.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:51:33 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
I'm with you on Homicide. Very gritty, very innovative. I didn't stick with it
when I recently tried to watch it, but I was impressed, and very much so.

And I agree too on Downton Abbey and MI-5.
What knocks me out about Downton Abbey is the pace. I've never seen a "masterpiece theater style show" with that contemporary face pace. It's make for thrilling entertainment. When I go back to the old bbc stuff, the pace is often slogging and stifling.

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:52:49 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
I wish I knew enough to chart the whole change or shift across the board,
but I don't.
I registered major changes at different times --- on cable, on network, in mini series, etc.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:53:17 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
That one I missed. Have to look it up.

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:53:51 PM PST
MW says:
All shows mentioned are great, but I have to say that AMC really put the new age on the map, if only for the fact that it was on basic cable, not premium. They really risked it all by going from a classic movie channel to Mad Men, Breaking Bad, etc. That took guts, and a whole lot of money! If they would have failed, this new Golden Age would still be hit and miss.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012, 5:55:44 PM PST
Anne Rice says:
Yes, I think you're right on that. I only just discovered what they were doing, devouring
Hell On Wheels and Breaking Bad.

Posted on Nov 16, 2012, 5:57:43 PM PST
Eric Fox says:
oh anne you haven't seen walking dead on amc u gotta see it.
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Discussion in:  TV Series forum
Participants:  23
Total posts:  94
Initial post:  Nov 16, 2012
Latest post:  Mar 24, 2013

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