• 61
    Bonanza

    Bonanza

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    NBC (ended 1973)
    White-haired Ben was the proud patriarch of the Cartwrights, the family at the center of one of TV's most beloved and long-running series. Their ranch, the Ponderosa, was 1,000 square-miles (600,000 acres) in size and sprawled from mountainous shores of Lake Tahoe to the desert terrain near Virginia City in the Nevada Territory. Ben oversaw his frontier empire with the help of his three sons: Adam, Hoss, and Joe. The series was set in 1859 when the series began and would progress through and following the Civil War.
    ---------------------------------- Series creator and producer David Dortort, who oversaw the series during its 14 year network run on NBC, says he first first got the idea for the series writing the 1953 episode of "Fireside Theatre" titled "Man of the Comstock."
    ---------------------------------- By 1959, NBC wanted a big filmed series to promote the sales of color television sets. NBC was the only network investing in color programs since its parent company RCA owned the electronic color transmitting system used by TV. "Bonanza" was just the type of show the network needed to "show off" its living color. In its initial season, it floundered in the ratings on Saturday nights against CBS' "Perry Mason"; it's said its renewal had a lot to do with its being shot in color. In the second season, "Bonanza" more than held its own in the Nielsens. It was the network's decision to move the series to Sunday nights that allowed it explode into a Top-10 hit.
    ---------------------------------- "Bonanza" differed in many ways from the dozens of other westerns on the air during its run. It relied more heavily on the characters than it did on action--though there was plenty of that. Good and bad weren't always as simple as "black hats" vs. "white hats"; many times, good people didn't live happily ever after. Despite that, Ben imparted a high code of ethics upon his sons. Among the principles: 1-Intolerance and bigotry were not acceptable. The Cartwrights often came to the defense of Indians, Chinese, and others who were the targets of the narrow-minded. 2-Once a man had paid his debt to society and was released from prison, he deserved a clean slate and a chance to start over. 3-The land was sacred. Ben's greatest business headaches came from his refusal to allow his land to be polluted and destroyed for profit. When the Cartwrights cut down a tree for lumber, they planted another. Their environmental concerns remain unique for a television series.
    ---------------------------------- Ben's path to his dream home of the Ponderosa (named for the Ponderosa Pine, plentiful in that area) was a long time in coming. He was a seaman, acting as first mate for Captain Abel Stoddard, when he met his boss' daughter Elizabeth and fell in love. She died after giving birth to first child Adam. Leaving the sad memories behind in the Northeast, he traveled to St. Louis and opened a trading company. He met and married the Swedish stunner Inger Inger Borgstrom who loved horses and shooting. She gave birth to son Hoss en route to the frontier, but was killed by an arrow during an ambush. Moving to New Orleans, Ben became an importer/exporter and fell for Creole beauty Marie DeMarigny. He made her wife number three and finally made it to the West. They established the Ponderosa and she gave him another son, Joseph. Marie died several years later in a riding accident. The story of each of these romance were detailed in individual episodes early in the series' run.
    ---------------------------------- The high mortality rate of women encountered by Ben and his sons, known jokingly as the "Cartwright Curse," became a running gag among comedians and viewers alike. If a female became a love interest to any of the show's men, even money says she'll be sick, dying, or dead by the end credits.
    --------------------------- Location filming kept the series from feeling "studio bound" and gave Bonanza a chance to highlight its color cinematography. Though much was filmed on a huge sound stage at Paramount Studios, scenes were regularly shot on the studio's outdoor "Western Street" and on locations throughout Southern California and Lake Tahoe, Nevada. The rising cost of shooting at Paramount eventually forced a move to the Warner Brothers studio in Burbank. To explain the new appearance of Virginia City, Season 12 began with "The Night Virginia City Died" where a huge fire destroyed the "old" town.
    ---------------------------------- Changes inevitably took place among cast members during "Bonanza"'s long run. After several years of complaining about being held back from a movie career, Pernell Roberts was finally sent on his merry way after of Season 6. Prior to that, amid fears of Roberts' departure, Guy Williams was brought in for a few episodes as Ben's nephew Will Cartwright. It's said the cast resented his character being added and he disappeared after five appearances. Beginning with "Sense of Duty" in Season 9, David Canary joined the cast as Ponderosa ranch foreman Candy Canady. He practically became a Cartwright, appearing in roughly a third of the series' total episodes. He disappeared with no mention at the end of season eleven after failing to get a raise from producer Dortort. Young orphaned teenager Jamie Hunter did become a real fourth Cartwright son when he was taken in by Ben in Season 12 and legally adopted in "A Home for Jamie" the next season. In the wake of Dan Blocker's death following Season 13, the cast was beefed up. David Canary returned as Candy (reportedly Michael Landon personally asked him to appear) and Tim Matheson was added a Griff King, a young man paroled into Ben's custody who was hired as a ranch hand.
    ---------------------------------- The loss of Blocker left a hole that simply couldn't be filled. This, combined with the show's move to Tuesday nights after eleven years on Sunday, dealt the series a death blow. Ratings took a nosedive and Bonanza aired it final episode in the middle of Season 14 on January 16. 1973.
    ---------------------------------- After all these years, Bonanza remains hugely popular. Besides the quality of the program itself, having filmed in color has kept it from looking "old". Episodes began to be released by CBS/Paramount on DVD beginning in 2009, and were uncut from their network airing with all the original music intact.
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  • 62
    Entertainment Tonight

    Entertainment Tonight

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    Welcome to the Entertainment Tonight guide at tv.com. ET is a daily, half-hour, nationally syndicated entertainment newsmagazine, reporting on breaking news events, exclusive interviews, behind-the-scenes first looks, and Hollywood's hottest stories from the worlds of film, television, fashion, literature and interactive media.moreless
  • 63
    How I Met Your Mother

    How I Met Your Mother

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    CBS (ended 2014)
    How I Met Your Mother is a comedy about Ted (Josh Radnor) and how he fell in love. It all starts when Ted's best friend, Marshall (Jason Segel), drops the bombshell that he's going to propose to his long-time girlfriend, Lily (Alyson Hannigan), a kindergarten teacher. At that moment, Ted realizes that he had better get a move on if he too hopes to find true love. Helping him in his quest is Barney (Neil Patrick Harris), a friend with endless, sometimes outrageous opinions, a penchant for suits and a foolproof way to meet women. When Ted meets Robin (Cobie Smulders), he's sure it's love at first sight, but destiny may have something else in store. The series is narrated through flashbacks from the future, voiced by Bob Saget. The theme song is "Hey Beautiful" by The Solids.moreless
  • 64
    Seinfeld

    Seinfeld

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    NBC (ended 1998)
    This is a show about nothing; however, for a show about nothing, this show has many complex plots, sub-plots, is very well written and put together. So much so that until the public caught onto the series, the television critics were responsible for helping to keep it alive. The critics further went on and made the series victorious in every category it was eligible for in the 1st Annual American Television Awards. Seinfeld has also won a few Emmy Awards, the George Foster Peabody Award for 1992 and many more. Many of the early episodes were based on the life experiences of series co-creator, Larry David. Stories such as The Stock Tip and The Jacket really happened, as did many others. Across the hall from Larry lived a man named Kenny Kramer, who aside from the physical comedy aspects, lives the life of TV Kramer. Find out all about him at the real Kramer's web site. Some aspects were based on Jerry's life. Jerry's real address in NYC when he was struggling comic was 129 W. 81 St., this is the address used for his building in the series. In the series, Jerry lives in apartment 5A, Kramer in 5B. Viewer Jason Dean Vaupel notes that in a couple of episodes of the second season, Jerry lives in apartment 3A. And Newman's apartment has usually been 5E, but viewer Jeff Holland notes that it sometimes is 5F and that 5E was rented out to someone else as already noted in the episode, The Conversion. Their building is called The Shelley according to viewer Kipp Teague whose discerned that from the awning on the building. However, that building is actually located in Los Angeles, the building at the real address in NYC is much different. Jeff Holland also notes that The Shelley has no visible fire escapes, but there is one outside of Jerry's window. Other aspects are composite of both lives. For example, Elaine's character is half based on Jerry's ex-girlfriend Carol Leifer. Carol joined the production staff in the 5th season. An ex-girlfriend of Larry David's, named Monica Yates, whose father was a noted writer in the other half of the Elaine equation. Larry David once wore a suede jacket that got wet while meeting her father. Another viewer, Bobby Bank, notes that a tribute to Jerry's father is seen in occasional episodes. Jerry's father, named Kal, worked in the sign business, so occasionally in the background you may see a sign that says Kal's Signs. Bobby stated in a trade magazine for the sign industry called Signs of the Times that he... Quote: had the pleasure of meeting and working with Kal in the early 70s when we were producing Jewelite (Bobby's company) letters for him. I remember Kal saying, 'Bobby, you should meet my son Jerry. He's a real funny guy.' Viewer Robert Buchanan also reminds me that it is ironic that Jerry's father's name is Kal, and Superman's real Kryptonian name is Kal-El. Most every episode takes place in Jerry's apartment; however, there are (of course) a few exceptions: The Chinese Restaurant, The Pen, The Parking Garage, The Subway, The Limo, The Airport, The Movie, The Hamptons, The Merv Griffin Show & The Dealership. While no activity occurs there, an empty apartment is shown in The Puerto Rican Day. First Telecast: July 5, 1989 Last Telecast: May 14, 1998 Episodes: 180 Color Episodes + 1 Special Ratings History Season 1= Not in the Top 30 Season 2= Not in the Top 30 Season 3= Not in the Top 30 Season 4= 25 Season 5= 3 Season 6= 1 Season 7= 2 Season 8= 2 Season 9= 1moreless
  • 65
    Coronation Street

    Coronation Street

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    ITV
    Coronation Street is credited as being one of the longest running soaps in the world and the longest running television soap in Britain (with the longest running overall being The Archers on BBC radio). The show has been on British TV screens since 1960 and has aired over 6,000 episodes. Coronation Street was created by Tony Warren, who drew on his own experiences living in Salford when developing the show for Granada Television in Manchester. The show's working title was Florizel Street. In a memo from Tony Warren to Granada, he explains the basis of the show: "A fascinating freemasonary, a volume of unwritten rules. These are the driving forces behind life in a working class street in the north of England. The purpose of Florizel Street is to examine a community of this nature, and to entertain." The first episode of Coronation Street, written by Tony Warren and containing the first airing of the iconic theme music (composed by Eric Spear), was transmitted live at 7.00pm on Friday 9th December 1960 and was an instant success due to its eliment of "realism". The series began as a twice weekly serial (airing originally on Wednesdays and Fridays) and was initially only commissioned for twelve episodes but due to the series' success with the viewers it became a perminant fixture, soon changing its transmission days to Monday and Wednesdays. Almost 30 years later the number of episodes increased to three per week in 1989 (additional episode on Fridays) and then to four in 1996 (additional episode on Sundays). Recently that has increased again with a second episode being added on a Monday night at 8.30, leaving a half hour gap between the end of the first episode of the evening and the start of the second. Coronation Street, Corrie or The Street (however you know it) has been at the top of the ratings for most of it's long run and despite tough competition from new soaps and even new TV channels it remains the highest rated programme on British television. William Roache is now the only original cast member remaining - he's played Ken Barlow since episode one. The Set: In early 1960, after Granada Television commissioned twelve episodes of Coronation Street, the set designer Denis Parkin was taken on a tour of Salford by series creator Tony Warren for inspiration on the set. The street's set was based on Archie Street in the Ordsall district, a film shot of which was used in the opening credits of the programme from 1960 to 1964. Archie Street itself was knocked down in 1971. The original television set was built indoors, the cobbles and paving slabs were painted to the floor and the houses were made out of wood. The set was so big and the studio so small that it had to be erected in two parts which explains why shots of the entire street were not seen until 1968 when Granada decided that the interior set was too limiting and so re-erected the set outside in a yard rented from British Railways on Grape Street on Manchester, behind the Granada studios. The cast hated it! They complained that it was draughty and cold; nevertheless it was soon re-built in bricks and mortar and survived until the end of the 1970s when the decision was made to incorporate the set into the Granada Studios Tour. By 1982 a brand new set had been erected on a new site just a few hundred yards away. When the set was complete it was opened by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh. The new set was first seen on-screen in episode 2210, broadcast on Monday 7 June 1982. From 1982 up until 1999, it was possible for fans of the show to visit the exterior set as part of the Granada Studios Tour. With the closure of the tour, Granada were able to expanded the exterior set to incorporate further buildings on Rosamund Street (the Health Centre) and later on Victoria Street (Roy's Rolls & Elliot and Son). Coronation Street currently airs on the following days in the UK: Monday @ 7.30pm & 8.30pm, Wednesday @ 7.30pm, Friday @ 7.30pm, Sunday @ 7.30pm. Note: This episode guide mirrors the episode numbers that are used by Granada Television. These, in turn, are based on the episode production numbers. On the odd occasion over the years these have proven to be slightly haphazard. To explain; the first episode of the programme was production code P228/1, the second P228/2, etc. In 1970, the production team reached episode 999 with the episode that was broadcast on Wednesday 19th August that year. The next episode, the 1000th, was not given the production code of P228/1000 but instead was given the new production code of P694 and the number 1! (To confuse matters more, Granada also publicised episode 999 as the 1000th episode!). The actual 1000th episode was therefore known as episode P694/1. As the seventies went on, two episodes (P694/26 and P694/27) were edited down into one half-hour episode, supposedly because Doris Speed - playing Annie Walker - was ill, and four episode numbers were not used at all - P694/503, P694/504, P694/505 and P694/549. You will therefore not find episodes 1503, 1504, 1505 or 1549 in this guide - because they were never made! When the 4000th episode was broadcast in April 1996, Granada's production codes skipped from P694/2999 to P694/4000, thereby mirroring better the actual episode number being shown and publicised. The fact remains though that other episode numbers have been skipped or counted as double episodes and therefore the publicity over episodes such as number 6000 in 2005 are a few episodes out. This is no big secret and, on occasion, comments have appeared in the UK press about this anomoly.moreless
  • 66
    The Virginian

    The Virginian

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    NBC (ended 1971)
    This is a long-lived series which was almost unique for its time in that it was filmed in color and that each episode had a running time of one and one-half hours (ca. 74 minutes if you exclude commercials). As was the case with many other series of the time, it had a large, ensemble cast and in some episodes only a single star or some of the stars would appear. Even when all the stars might appear, often the appearances could be mere cameos. Based on Owen Wister's 1902 novel, which has been filmed several times previously, and again in 2000, the series centered around events at Shiloh Ranch near Medicine Bow, Wyoming, which, at least initially, was owned by former judge Henry Garth (Lee J. Cobb) and his daughter Betsy (Roberta Shore). The remaining initial cast included the ranch hands led by the foreman, the Virginian (James Drury), and included Trampas (Doug McClure) and, for the first three seasons, Steve Hill (Gary Clarke). Over time the ranch ownership changed and several of the hands came and went with only The Virginian and Trampas remaining around for all nine seasons. Well-produced, the series often featured unusual or well-known Guest Stars (Bette Davis, George C. Scott, Myrna Loy, Ricardo Montalban, Ulla Jacobssen, Franchot Tone, etc.). The editor of the page has been gradually viewing and filling in cast information and detailed synopses on the various episodes but given the large number that exist, this will be a long drawn out process. The episode descriptions are almost complete for some years but many episode descriptions, particularly in the later years, remain to be completed. Many of the detailed synopses which have been completed are the only ones accessible for the series either on the web or in print and every effort is made to ensure their accuracy. The remaining episodes will be gradually filled in as time and energy permit (the editor personally has about another 100 episodes which he has not had time to view!) and others are encouraged to submit summaries and information. Although grey market videos circulate, and some episodes are commercially available in Europe on DVD, very few episodes are available on commercial video in North America. These pages were last updated on April 28/05. The most recent "updates" have involved mainly reorganizing existing information to meet new TV Tome web page structures. These include changing the existing long episode descriptions to shorter summaries (currently working on Season 4) and moving the longer summaries to a "recap" section. However, some new episode descriptions, recaps and casts/crew are being added/corrected by me to fill in gaps in the earlier years...and lately several people have sent me short and long synopses of missing episodes and this is much appreciated!moreless
  • 67
    The Pioneer Woman

    The Pioneer Woman

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    Food Network
    Blogger and cookbook author Ree Drummond draws inspiration from her food blog, "The Pioneer Woman," where she expresses her journey from city girl to rancher wife at her very own Oklahoma ranch.moreless
  • 68
    This Is Us

    This Is Us

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    NBC
    The show follows a bunch of people with the same birthday. It starts with each of them turning 36 and shows us how they all intertwine in everybody else's lives.
    From the writers/producers of Crazy, Stupid, Love. Starring Mandy Moore and Milo Ventimiglamoreless
  • 69
    Married... With Children

    Married... With Children

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    FOX (ended 1997)
    Married... with Children is a show about shoe salesman Al Bundy who raises his dysfunctional family. Peg Bundy is Al's wife, she is addicted to shopping and watching Oprah. Marcy Rhoades/D'Arcy is the Bundys' neighbor who works as a banker. Marcy was married to Steve Rhoades, another banker, for a few years but they ended up getting a divorce. A year later Marcy met and got married to Jefferson D'Arcy, a former spy who had various jobs, but he preferred being a house husband. Kelly Bundy is the attractive daughter with the intelligence of a fruitfly. Bud Bundy is the son who has bad luck with women. Fox Broadcast History: April 1987-October 1987---Sundays-8:00 p.m. October 1987-July 1989---Sundays-8:30 p.m. July 1989-August 1996---Sundays-9:00 p.m. September 1996-June 1997---Saturdays-9:00 p.m.moreless
  • 70
    Diners, Drive-ins and Dives

    Diners, Drive-ins and Dives

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    Food Network
    Guy Fieri, former winner of 'The Next Food Network Star 2,' is the host of this new show from the Food Network. Join Guy along with the Food Network as he travels the country in his 1967 Chevy Camaro, cruising around for the best examples of retro dining the US has to offer.moreless
  • 71
    Star Trek: The Next Generation

    Star Trek: The Next Generation

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    CBS (ended 1994)
    "Space... The final frontier... These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise. Its continuing mission: To explore strange new worlds... To seek out new life; new civilisations... To boldly go where no one has gone before!" Monologue of Captain Jean-Luc Picard in the opening credits Star Trek: The Next Generation is a science fiction show with some action and drama, that presents the watcher with a series of adventures from the crew of the USS Enterprise. The Enterprise is an explorer spaceship composed of a mix of different characters, from various races and cultures, whose crew is on a quest to discover the galaxy secrets and specially their inner secrets.moreless
  • 72
    PAW Patrol

    PAW Patrol

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    Nickelodeon (Returning Valentines Day)
    "PAW Patrol" is a TV show about rescue dogs led by a technologically advanced boy protecting and serving the town of Adventure Bay. No matter how small the problem or how difficult the situation - whether it's saving a train from crashing boulders or fixing a dent in Cap'n Turbot's boat - the PAW Patrol always finds a way to save the day. The PAW Patrol knows how to stay cool while doing it, too - each member is equipped with a vehicle and has their own "call-out" catchphrase!moreless
  • 73
    Murdoch Mysteries

    Murdoch Mysteries

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    CBC
    A Victorian-era Toronto detective uses then-cutting edge forensic techniques to solve crimes, with the assistance of a female coroner who is also struggling for recognition in the face of tradition. The characters are adapted from the Detective Murdoch novels by Maureen Jennings.moreless
  • 74
    The Mentalist

    The Mentalist

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    CBS (ended 2015)
    "Mentalist, noun. Someone who uses mental acuity, hypnosis and/or suggestion. A master manipulator of thoughts and behavior." The Mentalist tells the tale of Patrick Jane, who is employed as an independent consultant working with the California Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to solve crimes. He had been making a living as a psychic, and he would assist the police on cases -- until his life changed when he lost the two most important people in his life to one of those serial killers he was helping track. He now uses his refined observation skills to help the CBI solve cases. He works with Senior Agent Teresa Lisbon, Agents Kimball Cho and Wayne Rigsby and the rookie Grace Van Pelt. The series is produced by Warner Bros. Television.moreless
  • 75
    Modern Marvels

    Modern Marvels

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    The History Channel
    According to the History Channel, this show first aired in January of 1995, but it was released on VHS in 1994. It was probably on another network before the History Channel was formed in January of 1995.moreless
  • 76
    TMZ on TV

    TMZ on TV

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    Can't get enough of TMZ online? Well now you can watch all Hollywood gossip on television with this entertainment news magazine show. TMZ TV tracks down today's hottest stars with their cameras whether they are hitting the clubs or the dry cleaners.moreless
  • 77
    Blindspot

    Blindspot

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    NBC
    A vast international plot explodes when a woman is discovered in Times Square covered in mysterious tattoos. What is even more mysterious is that the name of FBI Agent Kurt Weller is emblazoned across her back. Jane Doe, Agent Weller, and the rest of the FBI realize that each tattoo on her body is a crime to solve and it will lead them closer to the truth about her identity and the mysteries to be revealed. Writer Martin Gero ("Bored to Death," "L.A. Complex") serves as executive producer along with Greg Berlanti ("Arrow," "The Mysteries of Laura," "The Flash"), Sarah Schechter ("The Mysteries of Laura," "The Flash"), Mark Pellington ("Cold Case") and Marcos Siega ("The Following"). Blindspot is a production of Warner Bros. Television and Berlanti Productions. Season 1 titles are anagrams, which when unscrambled, spelled out a long message that related to the season. Episodes 1 through 10 teased the drama's central mystery - "Who is Jane Doe?" whereas episodes 11 through 23 are designed to send intrepid viewers on an entirely new quest. The first nine episodes of season 2 are anagrams and then the titles became palindromes, with the center letters strung together to spell out "KURT WELLER SOS". Season 3 titles uses the letter pattern "letter-different letter-letter". The "different letter" in the episode titles spell out the message "One Of Us Will Give Our Life". Season 4 titles according to showrunner Martin Gero, "The puzzle is an homage to some of our favorite TV series and how they title the shows." The first letters of each TV series spell out the hidden message, "Is This The Death of the FBI?"moreless
  • 78
    Law & Order: Criminal Intent

    Law & Order: Criminal Intent

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    USA (ended 2011)
    "In New York City's war on crime, the worst criminal offenders are pursued by the detectives of the Major Case Squad. These are their stories." Groundbreaking producer Dick Wolf presides over his popular, Emmy Award-winning Law & Order franchise with Law & Order: Criminal Intent, broadcast on NBC during its first six seasons and then moved to NBC Universal sibling USA Network beginning with season seven. This legal crime drama is unique among the other franchise programs in that it offers an additional dimension by exposing major crimes from the criminal's perspective. Vincent D'Onofrio stars as Det. Robert Goren, an exceptionally bright homicide investigator with well-honed instincts that match up favorably with his criminal quarry. Likewise, his partner, Det. Alexandra Eames (Kathryn Erbe), brings an independence and stylish edge to her work that meshes well in tandem with Goren. In the fifth season, they were joined by Det. Mike Logan (Chris Noth), who had finally worked his way back from a ten-year exile to Staten Island. Logan has worked with three partners. Carolyn Barak (Annabella Sciorra) was introduced in the fifth season as the meticulous and measured counterpart to the fiery Logan. Megan Wheeler (Julianne Nicholson) joined major case in the sixth season as an equally brainy detective but with a bit of a wild side. Nola Falacci (Alicia Witt) worked with Logan for part of the seventh season while Wheeler was on another assignment (Nicholson's maternity leave). A hot-headed Irish-Italian mix, Falacci gave Logan a turn as the level-headed partner. Goren also worked briefly with another detective, G. Lyn Bishop (Samantha Buck), while Eames was on maternity leave (Erbe's real maternity leave). Their commanding officer during the first five seasons, Capt. James Deakins (Jamey Sheridan), was a competent but ambitious political character who knew how to survive and thrive behind the scenes. All of them often butted heads with the no-nonsense Assistant District Attorney Ron Carver (Courtney B. Vance), a stickler for the crucial legal details for the first five seasons. The sixth season introduced Eric Bogosian as Capt. Danny Ross to replace Jamey Sheridan. There was no replacement for the A.D.A. character. René Balcer, a ten-year veteran of the original Law & Order series, developed Law & Order: Criminal Intent and served as head writer, executive producer and showrunner for the first five seasons. Warren Leight took over as showrunner and executive producer in seasons six and seven. Peter Jankowski and Norberto Barba are also executive producers.moreless
  • 79
    The Ed Sullivan Show

    The Ed Sullivan Show

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    CBS (ended 1971)
    This long-running variety series premiered on June 20, 1948 with the title Toast of the Town. (The Toast of the Town link covers the first 8 seasons of Ed Sullivan.)

    The series was re-titled The Ed Sullivan Show on September 25, 1955 (the beginning of the 9th season). Although the name had changed, it remained the same variety show with "something for everyone." There continued to be a diverse guest line-up which included singers, musicians, actors, dancers, comedians, circus acts, plate spinners and acrobats.

    But now there was now a new type of guest: the rock 'n' roll performer. While Ed booked a few rock 'n' roll acts on "Toast of the Town," these performers became even more prominent on "The Ed Sullivan Show."

    One of the most famous rock 'n' roll acts was, of course, Elvis Presley. Ed had at first scoffed at the idea of booking Elvis, who had already appeared on "Stage Show," "The Milton Berle Show" and "The Steve Allen Show" amid much controversy. But as Elvis' popularity grew, Ed relented and booked him for three appearances.

    Then there were the famous Beatles appearances. Legend has it that Ed booked the Beatles without hearing even a note of their music. While visiting England, Sullivan happened to be at Heathrow Airport on October 31, 1963 when the Beatles' plane arrived. The British press and hundreds of fans were there to greet them. Upon seeing all the frenzy, Ed signed the band to appear on his show. Beatlemania was already in full swing when the Beatles arrived at New York's JFK airport on February 7, 1964. On February 9, the Beatles made their "Ed Sullivan" debut. The Beatles' three 1964 Sullivan appearances were among the highest rated TV programs of the 1960's.

    In 1967, Ed's NYC studio, Studio 50, was officially re-titled "The Ed Sullivan Theater." The ratings of The Ed Sullivan Show began to drop in 1968. CBS cancelled the series in 1971. The final new show aired on March 28, 1971 which was followed by several weeks of reruns. The series' network run ended on June 6, 1971 (which was a repeat of the February 7, 1971 show). At the time of the cancellation, CBS did not give The Ed Sullivan Show the sendoff that it deserved. Instead of ending with a tribute show focusing on all the great moments of the past 23 years, the show quietly went off the air. But in the 33 years since the series was cancelled, CBS has aired numerous tribute shows giving the series the recognition it deserves.

    Syndicated, cable TV and PBS repeats:

    In 1980, a "Best of Sullivan" series hosted by John Byner appeared in syndication. Each episode was an edited 30-minute version of the original 1-hour shows. This version has not been broadcast since the 1980's.

    Around 1992, a new "Best of Ed Sullivan" series was syndicated. These were 30-minute edited versions of the original shows (but often with clips from other episodes added). This version later appeared on the TV Land cable network (1996-1998).

    From 2001 through 2004, PBS stations across the U.S. aired edited versions of The Ed Sullivan Show (usually with two 30-minute programs shown back-to-back). These were produced by WQED Multimedia in Pittsburgh.
    --The first PBS season (2001-02) consisted of the 1990s shows that were edited for commercial TV. To fill in the commercial breaks, WQED added new intros by Shirley Jones.
    --For the 2002-03 PBS season, WQED publicized a new package of 76 Sullivan shows. (These do not have Shirley Jones.) Ten of these shows have not been seen since their original broadcasts. The other 66 were previously shown in the 1990s but were slightly re-edited with a few "missing" performances restored. This group of Sullivan shows continued into the 2003-04 season.

    A different series, titled "Ed Sullivan's Rock 'N' Roll Classics," first appeared in the 1990's on VH1 (in the US). This version features rock and pop music clips taken from various Ed Sullivan episodes and is currently available on DVD.

    For information about The Ed Sullivan Show and Toast of the Town, contact:
    SOFA Entertainment
    9121 W. Sunset Blvd.
    West Hollywood, CA 90069
    Sofa Home Entertainment SOFA Entertainment owns the right to every Ed Sullivan Show and Toast of the Town episode.

    And thanks to Historic Films for their on-line database. Their website has been very helpful in verifying guest lists and other information.moreless
  • 80
    Will & Grace

    Will & Grace

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    NBC
    Will & Grace is a hilarious series about two best friends. The twist is that Will is gay Grace is a straight interior designer. More than friends, but less than lovers, the two share a special bond and their personalities easily balance one another's. In addition to the stable Will and Grace, the show features Will's flamboyantly gay friend, Jack and Grace's sarcastic, spoiled, and boozy assistant, Karen.
    Will & Grace is the only series of such length (8 years) to have all of its episodes directed by the same director, in this case the talented James Burrows. Will & Grace is also one of the three series in which all of the main cast memebers won Emmy awards, with the other two shows being The Golden Girls, and All in the Family.
    Throughout its 8-year run, Will & Grace has been nominated for 83 Emmys, 24 Golden Globes, 14 SAG Awards and six People's Choice Awards. Among its 12 Emmy wins, the show won as Outstanding Comedy Series in 2000. In 2002, 2003, 2005, and 2006, it had more Emmy nominations than any other comedy series. Additionally, it's been nominated for an American Comedy Award, three GLAAD Media Awards and a Founders Award from the Viewers for Quality Television.
    NBC Broadcast History September 1998-November 1998 – Monday 9:30 December 1998-March 1999–Tuesday 9:30 April 1999-May 1999 – Thursday 8:30 September 1999-May 2000 – Tuesday 9:00 October 2000-January 2004 – Thursday 9:00 January 2004-April 2004 – Thursday 8:32 April 2004-September 2004 – Thursday 9:00 September 2004-December 2005 – Thursday 8:30 January 2006-May 2006 – Thursday 8:00moreless
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