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tv   The Eighties  CNN  December 18, 2021 6:00pm-8:00pm PST

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we intend to coverer all the news all the time. we won't be signing off until we are all dead. >> is that special? >> any tools for expressions will bring the best and worst of us. >> they don't pay me enough to
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do that. >> people are no longer embarrassed to watch televtelev. we have seen the news and it's us. ♪ >> slowly but surely the 1970s
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are disappearing. the 1980s will be pupon us. as we begin the '80s. nine out of ten people were watching only one of three networks. >> more than 30 million people are addicted to it. what is it? it's television's primetime prairie pot boiler of dallas. >> a move like that will destroy all of you and ruin our family name. >> brothers or no brothers, whatever it takes, i will stop you. >> dallas, the one hour show that captivated america for 13 years.
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>> "dallas" rooted in the 1970s. this character, jr as a pop phen phenomenal. >> tell me which -- you will be staying with tonight. >> whatever it is, it's much more delicious than the -- i am looking at now. >> you could do something so unexpected that it would become news over night. [ gunshot ] . the national obsession around who shot jr is hard to imagine how obsessed we were with that question but we were. >> who shot jr is about ideal
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cliff hanger you can get. who did shoot jr? >> we shot jr and we broke for the summer and the actors went on strike. it delayed the resolution and it just started to percolate through the world. i remember going on vacation to england that summer and that's all the people we are talking about there. >> well, we know you don't die. you could not die. >> how could you die and could not come back next season? >> i could not come back but the show can still go. >> you would not. >> what is that show without jr? >> well, that's what i figured. i guess if you don't know by now who shot jr, you probably didn't care. last night 200 million people watched the "dallas" show. "who shot jr," it's a moment that gathered everybody around which is now the television set.
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>> one special american program, a critic says, every other american's statements about war. that will touch millions of americans. >> it was the kind of event that would draw the world's press, the end of the sukorean world a the television show "mash." i am very proud to have known you. >> there were landmark times where shows have been watched into the '70s and into the '80s like "mash" had its final episode and we were all sad to see them go. >> i will miss you, a lot. >> all over the country, army of fans crowded around television sets to watch the final episode and to bid "mash" farewell.
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>> the finale of "mash" was unprecedented. 123 million people watched one television program at the same time. >> i really should be allowed to go home. there is nothing wrong with me. >> when we entered the show, we got telegrams of congratulations from. the size of the response and the emotional nature of the response that we were getting was difficult for us to understand. >> who shot jr and the last episode of "mash" are the last call for the precable world of television. it's like they are the last time that that huge audience will all turn up for one event. >> all right, that's it. let's roll. >> hey. >> let's be careful. >>. >> we have an arm robbery.
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>> when quality does emerge on television, the phrase too good for tv is often heard. one reason network offering that seems to deserve that phrase is "hill street blue." hill street is one of the changing point of the entire industry of tv. we have all watched documentary about cops and had this real hand he wld in the moment that were enable of. >> the minute you looked at it, it looked different. it had a move to it. you can smell the stale coffee. we didn't want to do a standard cop show where you got a crime and you got your two cops and you go out and catch the bad guys and you sweat them and he confesses and that's it. that impact, their behavior in
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profound ways. >> what about it? is he here? >> we are working on it. >> how is this logic? >> if he's not elsewhere then he's lost. >> we are not lost. >> never in my entire life have i listened to so much incompetent covered so much by mitigated crap. i have you up in charges. >> there is these ongoing arcs for these characters that would play out five or six entreepisodes. no one really done that in an hour long traumatic show. >> these past four months i have missed you. >> i had to find that out. come home. >> i think in the past people had watched television passively. and the one thing i think we did set out to be provacatorprovaca.
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>> what the hell is the matter with you? >> i will tell you what they don't pay me enough to do this. all i see was a white face. >> it was a white face that pulled the trigger, not a black one. >> the idea that characters being deeply flawed even though they were in this uniform. i thought it was important to finally get across. >> we wanted to make a show that made you participate and made you pay attention and i think that worked pretty well. >> the winner is. >> "hill street blue." >> it had 21 nominations and we went on in the '80s and it put us on the map s and that's when people checked us out. what the american public want is as cheese burger and what you
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are trying to give them is a fr french delicacy. your job is to keep shutting it down on your throat until after a while and they that does not taste bad. >> nice of you to join us dr. morrison. >> the success of "hill street blue" is a phenomenal and you saw shows like saint elsewhere. >> do you know what people call this place? "saint elsewhere." a place where you did not want to send your mother-in-law. >> it promoted hill street hospital. >> you don't know what medication and the worst progress. you are pathetic. >> phil! >> dr. morris needs right away. >> "st. elsewhere" broke ever rule there is.
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>> they would have tragic things happening to these characters. you really fell for them. >> i got aids? >> television at its best is a mirror of society in the moment. >> "st. elsewhere" challenged people. the stuff they gave you was extreme whether they are dealing with aids or having one of their main doctors raped in a prison. they tackle a lot of difficult subject. "st. elsewhere" were run by people trying to stretch t the '80s. >> okay, clear! hey google. ♪ ♪ ♪
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are you a christian author with a book that you're ready to share with the world? get published now, call for your free publisher kit today! a lot of excitements connected to sports in the '80s. you used to have to depend five minutes of sports at the end of your newscast. that's not enough. give us more sports. >> sports becomes a tv show. what are tv shows built around?
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they're built around characters. >> you can't be serious, man. >> you can't be serious. >> mac and ro, the perfect villain. never giving emotions away. >> what tennis really want was to get its two best players playing over and over again whether whe. >> that's what we want to see over and over again. >>. >> the man has a smile that lights up the television screen. >> there is magic johnson, this urban kid from michigan and la larry burke, this guy works carrying trash. it's a great story. s
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>> lakers had several chances against byrd. >> magic johnson leads the attack. >> oh, what a show! >> what a big play? >> when those championship games are in primetime and people are paying attention to that, television feeds into those rivalries and makes them bigger than they have ever been before. >> primitive skills. they're just as good as dead. >> every mike tyson's fight was an event. every fight was a murder. >> you can feel it watching on tv. >> tyson is made for tv because there was drama. >> it's all over. >> mike tyson have won it! >> not a lot of junior high school kids can dunk especially at five. >> everybody tried. >> i think he's starting to transcend justice sport.
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>> michael jordan becomes it is motto that every athlete wants to shoot for. they want to be a brand. iconic brand. >> the inbound pass comes into jordan. here is michael in the foul line. the bulls win it! san francisco. >> we just had an enormous pent-up demand for sports and it began to rise. >> with cable television suddenly offering an array of different channel choices, the audience bifurcated. that's an earthquake. >> i want my mtv. >> i want my mtv. >> a new concept is born. the best of tv combined with the best of radio. this is it. welcome to mtv, music
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television. the world first 24 hours stereo music channel. >> what a concept. mtv was pow in your face, you were not going to turn us off. >> mtv did nothing but play current music videos all day long. you turn on the tv and it's like the radio? >> i am martha quinn, the musical continues non stop, the newest component of your stereo system. >> when mtv launched, a generation was launch. 18 to 24 year olds were saying i want my mtv videos and fashion. >> mtv was it is firstnet work really focused on the youth market and becomes hugely influential because they understand each other, the audience and the network. mtv had a giant impact visually and musically on every part of the tv culture that came next.
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>> freeze! miami vice. friday night on nbc, thanks to "miami vice." a lot of new twists. described by one critic contained of flashes of briehl yens. the story centers around two under cover vice cops. >> i don't know how it's going to work, tub. >> i mean you are not up my ally, style and persona ways. >> television very much was the small screen who was interesting about tony was his pilot screen play. we'll make one hour movie every single week. >> standby. >> action, freeze, freeze! >> you were describing the show as a new wave of cop shows. >> yes, we use a lot of mtv
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images and rock music to help describe the mood and feeling of our show. >> you don't get "miami vice" without mtv. the music was a big part of that show. >> there is an allure to using great music that everybody was listening to as opposed to the r routine kind of scoring. >> not only it was not afraid to let scenes play out. it would drag a car going from point a and b going for a four-minute song. it was. >> be able to take a television show like "miami vice" and rock and roll with this until somebody says stop, you guys are crazy and you can't do that and nobody ever did.
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private investigator? >> you probably wonder about the goat.
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let me drop off my friend. >> when we enter the '80s, a lot of one-hour drama that were popular. >> after "mash" went off the air, the next season there was not a sing sitcom in the top 10. the prevailing feeling was that is the sitcom was dead. report of the sitcom deaths were greatly exaggerated. >> if you study television history just when someone is counting a forum out that's the form of programming that leads to the next big hit. >> 1984, "the cosby show" comes along. bill cosby is not new to tv, he's had other tv shows. but "the cosby show" is very different, it stands apart from what he's done.
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>> they talk about parents and previous to that on television, the kids were cool and the parents were idiots and cosby says the parents are in charge and that was something new. >> instead of acting disappointed because i am not like you. maybe you can just accept who i am and love me anyway because i am your son. >> that's the dumbest thing i have ever heard in my life. >> it helps the casting a lot. the kids were just great. >> if you were the last person on this earth, i still would not tell you. >> you don't have to tell me what you did, just tell me what they're going to do to you. >> unlike any show in tv, it's showing upper middle class family. the fact that they existed was a deep issue. >> the decade was waiting for
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something real. unless it's real, it does not seem like it maoves anybody. and if you can hit the hearts and minds, you got yourself a hit. >> how was school? >> school, i brought home two children that may or may not be ours. >> cosby show brought this tremendous audience to nbc. that was a bridge to us. >> i mean our ratings went way up. ♪ even the theme song of "cheers" puts you in a good mood. >> ooevening everybody. >> what's shaken? >> not only did you know who everybody was but you want to come back and see what was going to happen. >> it's like all you have to do is watch it once, you are going to love these people.
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these are universal characters and the humor worked on so many levels. >> i was up 2:00 in the morning, finishing up. >> you have to create as community that people are identifying with. >> can "cheers" give you that community? >> i was always want sky diving, i never had the guts. >> what does it feel like? >> imagine like sex. >> i can't imagine what sex is like. i have plenty of sex and this too. >> if the first episode there was a passionate annoyance, oh, something is going on here. >> a really intelligent woman would see your line of bs a mile away. >> i never met an intelligent woman that i want to date. >> on behalf of the intelligent woman around the world, may i just say --
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>> with e e saw what ted and al together. i said we have to do this relationship. >> if you will admit that you are carrying a little torch for me, i will admit that i am carrying a little one for you. >> oh, i am. >> i am not carrying one for you. >> diane knew how to tease sam and sam knew how to tease diane and i guess we know how to tease the audience. we had the luck to be able to rotate to cash and every time we put somebody in, they were
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explosions but, you can't cut all comedy from the same cookie cutters. all you can hope is every night turns out like thursday. >> oh, adrian! >> next. how rude? >> he's quick. i will give him that. all the television says oh, maybe sitcoms are alive again. and, that's all that it took. it took one success. >> a few years from now something new they attempt of who we pick. the man and women creating good
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a plan nevertheless come to some sadness.
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for almost two decades, we have been meeting like this, i will miss that. i will be away on assignment and dan rather will be sitting here the next few years. good night. uncle walter dominated cbs, in a way the country used to say he was the most trusted man in the country. >> once walter retires, all three network news anchors within a period of a couple years switched over to a new generations. the '80s may have been the last gasp people watched the media and trusted the media. that conference will be nationally televised within the hour. leslie stalls is at the white house. >> in the '80s, women came into the newsroom. when i first joined, it was '72 and very few. by the '80s there were more and more. >> the decade of the '80s was
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still sinnk or swim. you are in a period where you were going up against a lot of people did not think women had what it took. >> the best producers, i am going to get fired. the best producer at cbs news are women. >> they're at the level of taking hold and making decisions about individual pieces. they're not yet executive producers of all the new shows but they will be. >> for the past 24 hours, krafts have taken her cause to many of the newsroom. >> what happens to me deserves tom some attention. >> she had a very successful career, there she was in the late '80s, tv says we are taking you off the air because you gotten older and not as attractive. she decided to make an issue and
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filed a lawsuit and it became a huge national topic of discussion. >> a jury says she got a raw deal because she was a woman. women everywhere were asked, what did you think of kristine craft. >> emphasis has been on physical appearance and this decision he helps swing back to good journalism, i think we got something to be happy about. >> what matters is what kind of reporter are you. it took kristine craft's incident to bring that out. >> cnn, cable news network. you are throwing all the dice on this one? >> why not? >> well, on that original point, thank you very much indeed. >> i wanted to see what was going on in the world. and it was no way that you could do it watching regular television stations.
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it always comes on at 6:00 or 10:00. if there is news 24 hours, people can watch it any time. we decided on june 1st, we won't be signing off until we are all there. >> there was a fool's zone. how can we possibly find an audience? >> well, he did. good evening, i am david walker. >> television news before this was stuff that already happened. for the first time, cnn brought the world to people in realtime. >> cnn, the world's most important network. >> i didn't do cable news network because somebody told me it could not be done. i figure it was a viable concept and i went ahead and did it. it was after i announced that we are going to do it, the detractors all showed up. >> is cable news network going to be a new means of delivering
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the same kind affair? >> no, it provides different things and cable news network is the best example of that. >> people love news and we have lots of it. the other guys -- not very much. choice and quantity won out. >> new york city, hello. >> the major catastrophe in america's face program. >> jessica mcclure trapped for almost three days now. good evening, i am pat buchanan, the american people appreciated the new television. they certainly came to cnn. >> we both agree of the ability of free and more extensive personal contact between the people of the soviet union and the united states. >> we began to realize that the
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best way to get a message to a foreign leader was to have a president going to the rose garden and make a statement because everybody was watching cnn news. >> cnn was a breakthrough. it changed the whole world. >> it changed quickly. the network news business. that business that we were not the only ones. it was hard, it's hard to be on the top little purge and have to come down off of it. >> our special segment tonight, the network news, the first in a two parts series on a profound changes taken by news. >> there is a variety of reasons why people were freaked out in the 1980s. one of them was cnn and another was the rise of cable. another was taken by foreign entity, corporate america. all of them want their money's
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worth. people began to find out news can be a profit center and that focus a lot of attention on us. a lot of people in wall street. if you think of news divisions, cbs, nbc and abc, they were a proud tradition. a journalist tradition that really matters. this is not about profit and loss. the people that worked at those news divisions were freaked out by what it meant they were own by these larger corporate e ent entities. television news is not profitable at some point. >> i am worried of people who are only interested in money and power, it has higher purposes than that. >> we have seen the news and it's us. thank you! shop our winterfest event online now for pick up at the store. bye! (burke) with farmers auto multi-policy discount, the more policies you have with us, the more you could save on your auto insurance. (man) hey, hon! (wife) hi, honey! (man) like what?
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i am prsurprised there is n more shows about women. >> the '80s were the era where women being looked at with a
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little skepticism but definitely with more acceptability. you can see the door opening but it was not wide open. >> kagny and lacey was huge that there would be two women and they had serious jobs and they solve crimes and they were out on the streets and they were tough. that was out in front of what was happening the thein the cou. >> we are terrific team. >> this is true. >> we have been at that point of hundreds of cop shows but these buddies were women. had never been done before. >> i didn't go after this job because i didn't find anything else, all right? i dipldn't come here because i needed some kind of work to help pay the orthodontist. >> what the hell did it mean? >> strangely all these guys
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would say to us yeah, it's a good script but who's going to save them in the end. >> come on, we are taking you out of here. >> you are taking my wife. >> you don't take one more step. sergeant nelson, you have until 8:00 to turn ourself in. >> if you don't, i will. >> it was a time where you saw any merchants of women on television who were not necessarily just 20 and blond and had a small role. women who had substantial roles. ♪ >> it was unpredictable that an audience, a young audience of not so young audience and a lot in between could relate to those older ladies. >> you could not say why didn't you call me to get you. >> i tried to. every time i put a dime into
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dial, a condom popped out. [ laughter ] >> i got five in my pocket. here dorothy. >> a lifetime supply. >> she was recently named along with gjim brooks as one of television's most creative writers. it's seeasy to see susan harris impact. she was the greatest writer at that time singularly. all credit to her for coming up wp so many iterations for something so amazing. >> do you think there is a woman's voice as a writer? >> softer and higher. >> no, i am not deaf, i am a writer. >> yes, of course it's a woman's voice. >> women have a different perspective and they laugh at different things. >> yes, definitely is a woman's voice. >> oh, do you not know how many problems we have solved over a
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cheesecake at this kitchen. >> no, dorothy, exactly? >> 147. >> it's primetime this fall as some 23 new shows compete in one of the hottest races in years. here is here's one just about everybody predicts will be a big hit. "designing women" on cbs. four friends forming an interior decorating business and giving each other the business. >> suzanne, if sex were fast food, there would be an arch over your bed. >> linda bloodworth-thomason created one of the funniest, most unusual shows in "designing women." they were a different group of women than you really saw on television. they were feisty, they were sexy. and linda's voice came through shining. >> a man can get away with anything. i mean, look at reagan's neck. it sags down to here. and everybody raves about how great he looks. can you imagine if nancy had that neck? they'd be putting her in a nursing home for turkeys.
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>> they had given me this 23 minutes to address whatever topic i want, and it's such a privilege, it's more than the president of the united states gets, and it's kind of thrilling to have that every week. i would be lying if i said i didn't put my opinions in the show. >> excuse me, but you lovely ladies look like you are in need of a little male companionship here. >> trust me when i tell you that you have completely misassessed the situation at this table. >> moving on to scene "d." >> i am a woman and i am a writer, but i don't really enjoy being called a woman's writer. i think labels are harmful to us. >> with "murphy brown," just about everything about that program felt new. the civil rights movement and the women's movement had just begun to sort of be reflected in the programming that you saw on television in the '80s. >> murphy, you know the dunfree's club is for men only.
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>> and they have great dinners with great guests, and i don't get to go for one reason and one reason only, and it has to do with something you've got and i don't. a tiny, pathetic, little, "y" chromosome. >> murphy brown was sea change because she was so popular and such a strong, independent, tough woman. >> no matter what you think of a guest or their views, you are obligated to ask the questions in a dignified manner. james, she was unprofessional, am i right? >> well, i, uh -- >> do you believe this, jim? he thinks it's neat that his office chair swivels and he's calling me unprofessional. the guest bedroom slash music studio. the daybed slash dog bed. the living room slash yoga shanti slash regional office slash classroom. and this is the basement slash panic room. maybe what your family needs is a vacation home slash vacation home.
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you are in a good mood tonight, and i tell you, we have put a great show together. it will be on a week from thursday. [ laughter ] >> johnny carson in the '80s is making the transition from being the king of late night to being a national treasure. he was a throwback to that old show biz stuff. >> i've been on with you for some time. >> it's been a long time. >> yeah, well, you've been busy with other things. >> the tide is starting to turn in terms of where late-night television is going to go, but johnny is kind of holding out.
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he was not necessarily of his time in the '80s, but he did sustain a certain timelessness. he's the king. [ laughter ] >> he's all right, he's just playing. >> playing? [ bleep ]. >> my next guest not only has a college degree, but he also has a high school degree. >> that's right, i do. >> as well. he's hosted "the tonight show" practically as often as johnny carson and now he has his very own show, weekday mornings at 10:00 on nbc. >> what you're witnessing here is a good idea gone awry. a fun-filled surprise turning into an incredible screw-up. >> david letterman originally had a one-hour daytime show, and nbc, after like 13 weeks, decided to cancel it. >> today is our last show on the air. monday, las vegas --
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[ booing ] have these people been frisked? >> it was a dismal failure in terms of the ratings, but not in terms of introducing us to letterman. >> david, thank you for being with us tonight. >> thank you very much for having me, i appreciate it. >> in spite of all this nonsense that goes around in the background, stay with it, don't give up. stay with us here in new york. >> dave is back in new york. you're going to host a late-night television program that premieres monday night. what are critics likely to say tuesday morning? >> i don't much care because i found a way to deal with that, pills and whiskey. >> david, you're on. >> oh, i'm on? i'm sorry. >> proceed. >> i'm enjoying listening to you snort. >> they gave him "the late night show" after "the tonight show." and at the time, people thought who's going to watch television at 12:30 at night? who's up? i'll tell you who's up. young people. college people. >> is it going well?
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i know this is the first show and i think this guy needs a little support, dave letterman. >> he was anti-establishment at his core. he was thumbing his nose to any existing social structures. >> who are those women out there by the way? >> neighbors. >> i'll get rid of them. hey, excuse me. keep it moving. come on, get out. >> he kind of spoofed the whole notion of talk shows. >> it's the late-night guest cam. please say hello to tom hanks. there he is. >> no one could go on "the david letterman show" and try to steer it towards a point of view or push something in particular. he just wouldn't stand for it. you're on to do one thing and one thing only, be as funny as the rest of the show. >> you know, we could get in a two-shot here, dave. >> we could actually send the crew home, couldn't we? >> you know, as a comedian, you want the biggest audience that you could get. for dave, he knew a lot of things that he would do were going to alienate people, and he
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didn't care. he wanted his thumbprint out there, and that's the most important thing. >> it's time for small-town news. paul -- excuse me, paul? do you have any accompanying music here for small-town news? paul shaffer, ladies and gentlemen. >> the show making fun of itself and turning itself inside-out that way was something kind of new. >> i mean, don't we look like guys you'd see hanging around together? >> absolutely. >> would you like to hang around with me? >> nope. >> i'll say it again, this is the stupidest show -- >> i thought that i would never want to do this show with you. >> now why? because you thought i was a [ bleep ]? >> there is one rule i keep trying to abide by, and unfortunately, i only get to it about 12% of the time. and that is, it's only television. we're not doing cancer research. if the 40-year-odd history of commercial broadcasting has taught us one thing, there's nothing sacred about television. >> all right, steven is
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upstairs. >> hey, dave, i was just curious. is there any way i get mtv on this? >> actually, steve, that's a -- that's just a monitor and all you can get on that is our show. >> oh. that's okay. >> there was a degree of cynicism that was needed in the art form at that time, and it's a cynicism that just became common sense after a while, because it never got old. >> i've watched johnny carson. and you are no johnny carson. ♪ goo goo goo goo goo goo goo goo ♪ >> welcome the great white north. i'm bob mckenzie, this is my brother doug. today we got a real big show -- >> there was a second city chicago company, there was a second city toronto company. the toronto one is the one that fueled the sctv series which originally was syndicated and got to the states that way. >> hail, hail! >> hail, hail. thank you very much for that marvelous reception.
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i particularly want to thank my supporters over there in the cesarean section. >> it's healthy to be an outsider. you know, as a comedian. and canadians are always outsiders, but they're looking at the other culture which is right next door to them. >> i love you, i want to bear your children! ha ha ha! >> it was the type of comedy that had only been accessible if you could have gotten into the improv clubs in chicago and toronto. i had never seen anything like second city tv. >> james bridgeman, parkdale. >> sorry, no, never mind, i'm sorry. >> it was far more conceptual in its humor because it didn't have to be performed in front of an audience. and there was also just the idea that it was this sort of low-rent thing. it was this sort of by the seat of their pants kind of operation that gave it an authenticity. >> now that our programming day has been extended i'm going to be spending --
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>> where do you want me to put the kielbasa, mrs. brickley? >> put it in the fridge, butch. >> you were rooting for the show and the characters they created. there was something you got behind. whereas “snl” right from the gate and through the '80s was this big enterprise. >> after five golden years, lorne decided to leave and so did those close to him, including me, al franken. so nbc had to pick a new producer. now most knowledgeable people, as you might imagine, hoped it would be me, al franken. >> well, there was a real question of whether "saturday night live" would continue at all, whether it would just die. >> the press hasn't been very overly kind. >> yeah, i read that stuff. is "saturday night live" "saturday night dead"? >> oh, man, come on. >> my favorite is "vile from new york." >> please, come on. >> that's funny, that's funny. >> they were having a hard time.
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and then came the man that saved the show, eddie murphy. there was buzz about him, so you tuned in. and there was this kind of explosion of talent in front of your eyes. ♪ >> it really kind of rejuvenated the show. >> i am gumby, dammit! you don't talk to me that way! >> after awhile, the show regained its status and its clout and became even more of an institution than it had been. >> hey, bob. >> hey, peters. looks great today. >> listen, if you're unhappy with my work, tell me now! >> you're through, you hear me, through! you'll never work in this town again! >> don't leave me hanging by a thread. let me know where i stand! >> we were a little worried at first because we had a new cast. but everyone loves us. >> you guys have been so nice to us during our stay. >> isn't that special. >> i am hans. >> and i am franz. and we just want to pump you up. >> a lot of things they could do
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on "saturday night live" they couldn't do on a sitcom. the humor was more daring and more satirical, and it was political. >> you still have 50 seconds left, mr. president. >> let me just sum up. on track, stay the course, a thousand points of light, stay the course. >> governor dukakis, rebuttal? >> i can't believe i'm losing to this guy. [ phone rings ] >> i'll get it. >> it's the garry shandling show. >> people were taking the old principles of comedy and trying to turn them into something new. we spent years and years watching sitcoms and dramas and talk shows by then, we knew them by heart, that if somebody played on that and parodied it, we got it instantly. >> i appreciate you coming in under these conditions, lewis, i really do. you want to hold the credits? okay. now see, we were going to show the credits and you screwed that up, okay, because you're late. >> “the garry shandling show”
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was aware of the fact that it was a situation comedy. it highlighted the cliches in funny ways. >> are you looking into the camera? >> yeah. no, i didn't -- >> don't look into the camera. >> i didn't. >> don't. you don't come in here and look into the camera. >> i didn't. >> i'll bop you. i will. if i see a tape of this show and you're looking into the camera -- >> well, it's about that time. >> “pee-wee's playhouse” on cbs, a so-called saturday morning kids' show that adults could watch and wink at each other as they were watching it, is very clever. >> good morning. >> what's today's secret word? >> the secret word is -- good! >> it was a show certainly for kids, and it was for stoned baby boomers who were totally wasted on saturday morning and watched "pee-wee's playhouse" and saw
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god. >> i sure had a lot of fun. see you all real soon. until then, everybody be good. 34 to all the kisses... ...that led... this one. celebrate every kiss, with kay. i thought i was managing my moderate to severe crohn's disease. then i realized something was missing... my symptoms were keeping me from being there for her. so, i talked to my doctor and learned humira is the #1 prescribed biologic for people with crohn's disease. humira helps people achieve remission that can last. and the majority of people on humira saw significant symptom relief in as little as 4 weeks. humira can lower your ability to fight infections. serious and sometimes fatal infections, including tuberculosis, and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened, as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure.
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[upbeat music] ♪
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i am what i live my way the new eau de parfum intense giorgio armani 1968, the summer before junior high school, and i don't mind saying i was a pretty fair little athlete. >> "the wonder years" was a guy in modern times looking back on his childhood. that in itself is not new, but
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"the wonder years" did it with a wit and with the music. it was a brilliantly written show and a great performance by that entire young cast. >> hey, steve -- it looks like my baby brother and his girlfriend have found each other. >> she's not my girlfriend. >> kevin arnold has to cope with all the timeless problems of growing up during one of the most turbulent times that we have known. >> kevin arnold is just like a regular kid except in the 1960s, and he's not really aware of many of the events. like in one of the episodes, the whole family is watching the apollo 8 take off, but i'm just sitting there trying to call a girl. >> the first episode of "the wonder years," anybody who saw it remembers the ending where the first kiss with winnie and kevin arnold. the song they play is "when a man loves a woman." that moment seemed so pure and
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so real. ♪ when a man loves a woman can't keep his mind on nothing else ♪ >> the tone of the baby boomers in the 1960s is about rebellion, about being students. by the 1980s, it's time to grow up. and so they shave their beards, give up their dashikis, and put on power suits, a whole new notion. >> oh, the yuppies. last year the politicians were all talking about winning their votes. now the young urban professionals and the rest of their baby boom generation are being wooed by advertisers and their agencies. >> by the '80s, it was pretty clear that the generation after the generation of the '60s may be embodied by alex keaton on "family ties," seeming to be a lot more interested in the corner office than the new jerusalem. >> you're a young man, you shouldn't be worried about success. you should be thinking about hopping on a tramp steamer and going around the world. >> the '60s are over, dad. >> thanks for the tip. >> you weren't laughing at michael j. fox's character for
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being too conservative. you were actually laughing at the parents for being too hopelessly liberal. >> what is this? i found it in the shower. >> that's generic brand shampoo. >> no! >> this is him. this is the guy i've been telling you about. this is everything you want in a president. >> the genius of "family ties," it allows a kind of youthful reaganite to emerge that's focused on the future, that's focused more on a critique of the '60s. >> michael j. fox as alex keaton really became the center of the show. and the writers were smart enough to see that they had something special, and they wrote to that. >> it's not fair, alex. >> yeah. there's nothing you can do about it, jen. my advice to you is that you just enjoy being a child for as long as you can. i know i did. it was the best two weeks of my life.
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>> alex is a little bill buckley. the "wall street journal" is his bible. he has a tie to go with his pajamas. he's a very conservative and very intense 17-year-old. >> the first thing your teacher is going to ask is what did you do over the summer? a lot of kids will say i went to the zoo or i went to the beach or i went to a baseball game. what are you going to say? >> i watched the iran contra hearings. >> if mom and dad thought this generation was going to the dogs, think again. this is the generation that has discovered hard work and success. >> american culture is changing in the '80s. and in terms of television, there's a whole notion of demographic segmentation. >> networks were beginning to not be afraid to appeal to a very specific demographic. >> hey, handsome. look at that shirt. is that a power shirt or what? >> nice suit, alan. good shoulder pads. you looking to get drafted by the eagles? >> 30-somethings said we're not going to have cops, lawyers or doctors. we're just going to be about
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people. >> what are we doing here, why did we start this business? >> to do our thing. but right now we got two wives, three kids, four cars, two mortgages, a payroll. and that's life, pal. you be the breadwinner now. >> is that what i am? >> "30 something" is a very important show as you are going into this era of television being more introspective and more emotional. and some people weren't buying it. but for other people when they were talking about things like having kids and who is going to go back to work and some of these issues that hadn't been talked about a whole lot, it was important to people. >> i was so looking forward -- i was so looking forward to doing this. to be a grown-up for just an hour. >> in the beginning, there was talk of this being the yuppie show. and you mentioned it tonight. you said if there were a category for the most annoying show, this might win as well. >> now what some people perceive
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as annoying has nothing to do with yuppie. i think yuppie is a word made up by demographers and advertisers to sell soap. it doesn't have anything to do with what the show is. >> "30 something" was not a giant hit, but it was a niche hit. it attracted an enormously upscale group of advertisers. >> the network cared who was watching, not how many were watching. and that was more and more catching on in the '80s. >> the prosecution will ask you that you look to the law, and this you must do. but i ask of you that you look to your hearts as well. thank you. >> "l.a. law" was partly a classic lawyer show. but it was intertwined with their personal lives and different lawyers who were sleeping together and trying to get ahead. >> the reality level on that show was like a foot or two off the ground. and you're willing to go with that because it was a whole new spin on a law show. >> uh-uh, tell the truth. if you had to do it all over again and she walked into your office and she said, take my
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case, would you? >> well -- >> of course you would, because it is juicy, newsy, exciting stuff. >> it was really fun to take the "hill street blues" format and use it to frame an entirely different social and cultural strata with vastly different results. >> i wonder if i might engage with my client privately. >> certainly. >> what are you doing for dinner tonight? >> i was planning on having you. >> in that case, skip lunch. >> the formula had gotten established of how you can do a dramatic show, and yet still have an awful lot of fun. we didn't used to be able to accept that very easily in a tv hour. and even before the '80s were out, it's like, okay, i get it. so it's like, all right, what are the rules now? >> what are you doing? >> i'm doing what i should have done all along. what i wanted to do originally. what i should have done last night. stop that, david.
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i'm calling the police, david. hello, police? >> the networks realized there was an audience looking for something less predictable than traditional primetime fare. >> "moonlighting" was another of those shows that said, okay, i've seen the formulas that we've had up to here, let's do different things. >> hello. >> hello. >> we're looking a little pale today, aren't we? who have we here? >> i don't know. >> "moonlighting" was a really experimental show. they had a shakespeare episode, they had a black and white episode. they did a musical episode. they tried a lot of different stuff. >> i don't give a flying fig about the lines in my face, the crows' feet by my eyes, or the altitude of my caboose. >> well, i'm at a loss. i don't know what a flying fig is. >> that's okay. they do. >> there's no trouble on the set.
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there is no trouble on the set. >> well, we have a very volatile relationship. there is a hate/love element to it. >> the flirtations were great and bruce and cybill were great. glenn caron kept them apart for a long time, and bravo to him. >> what they did is they took the sam and diane dynamic from "cheers" and escalated it. "cheers" was will they, won't they? "moonlighting" was, do they even want to? >> stay away from me. >> here i come. >> but i don't want you. i never wanted you. >> yeah, right. >> does entertaining mean at some point stopping the tease of dave and mattie? do they get together at some point? >> well, that's going to be resolved this year. we like to think of it as two and a half years of foreplay. >> people who had been watching "moonlighting" for years were waiting for this moment. and your emotions are already there built on to the emotions that you're seeing on the screen. so when "be my baby" by the ronettes starts playing, it's like a perfect storm of romance. ♪
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where's mom? she said she would be home in time for the show. don't worry, sweetie. she promised she'd be here for it. ooh! nice shot! thanks! glad we have xfinity, with wifi speed faster than a gig! me too! woah, look! mom is on tv! she's amazing! (cheers) xfinity brought us together, after all! power your whole home this holiday with wifi speeds faster than a gig.
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click, call, or visit a store today. sing 2 in recent years, it seems that television has become a kind of electronic confessional. where guests are willing to expose painful and sometimes embarrassing aspects of their
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lives quite readily to millions of viewers. >> at the beginning of the decade, we get the dominance of phil donahue, and that's sort of a maturation of women's issues, he seemed to talk to them in the audience, he seemed to talk to them through the tv screen. >> i'm glad you called. kiss the kids. we'll be back in just a moment. >> if you look at the body of work we've had, you're going to see the '80s there. >> i'm not here to say you're wrong, but let's understand this. when you bring a moral judgment without knowing them, against them for the way that they look, they feel that confirms the reason for their rebellion, if that's what you want to call it. >> he really believed that daytime television needed to talk about the ideas we were thinking about, the issues we were concerned about. >> i don't want to characterize his question, but why don't you get this fixed instead of doing this screwy stuff? >> there's not a single recorded
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case in history of any transsexual that ever, through psychological treatment, changed. it has never happened yet. >> and we were putting very important people on the program. all kinds of people. gay people. people going to jail. people running for office. sometimes the same people. it was a magic carpet ride. >> you really do paint a very, very grim picture of the sitting president of the united states. >> let me just say this, i think he's probably the laziest president i've ever seen. >> the audience for phil donahue built and built and built and built, and led the way to oprah. ♪ >> hello, everybody. >> oprah has a particularly magical combination of her own background, her own experience,
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her own incisive mind, and empathetic spirit. >> thank you. i'm oprah winfrey, and welcome to the very first national "oprah winfrey show." >> i was surprised at the rocket pace that oprah took off. because it took us a lot longer. "the donahue show" rearranged the furniture, but oprah remodeled the whole house. >> there are a lot of other people out there watching who really don't understand what you mean when you say, we're in love. because i remember questioning my gay friends, you mean you feel about him the way i feel about -- it's kind of a strange concept, you know, for a lot of people to accept. >> oprah was connecting with people in a way that no one had on tv before. and it was really special to see. >> well, did you know that for the longest time i wanted to be a fourth grade teacher because of you? >> my, i was not aware of inspiring anyone. >> i think you did exactly what teachers are supposed to do, they create a spark for learning. it's the reason i have a talk show today.
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>> oprah winfrey now dominates the talk show circuit, both in the ratings and popularity. >> i want to use my life as a source of lifting people up. that's what i want to do. that's what i do every day on my show. you know, we get accused of being tabloid television and sensational and so forth. but what i really think we do more than anything else is we serve as a voice to a lot of people who felt up until perhaps my show or some of the others, they were alone. >> this is what 67 pounds of fat looks like. i can't lift it. it is amazing to me that i can't lift it but i used to carry it around every day. >> there's nothing more endearing to an audience than to have that kind of honesty and humility and courage on the part of a host. and that, i think, has a lot to do with her power. >> feels like i could do some good here, and i really do think that show does a lot of good.
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>> american television is drowning in talk shows. but it's never seen anything like morton downey jr. >> i want to tell you -- >> sit down and shut up! >> other competitors come and take the television talk show into two different directions. so you start seeing the phenomenon of daytime television shows becoming less tame and more wild. >> the '80s brought a lot of belligerence to television. whether it was morton downey jr. being the offensive caricaturish person that he was, or geraldo. he did his own outlandish things. >> stay with us, ladies and gentlemen. we're going to get into the mind of another all-american boy who came under the influence of satanism and took part in a crime without passion or motive -- >> geraldo rivera takes the power of the talk show to a whole other level, trying to put people on stage who hate each other, who are going to fight -- >> in the case of the temple of set and the church of satan, we have not had any problems with criminal behavior -- >> but yet when you hear story
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after story after story of people committing these wretched crimes and violent crimes in the devil's name -- >> the more tension there is, the more conflict and violence there is, the more the ratings go up. and the american people love to complain about it, but they also love to watch. >> geraldo rivera is back in a controversy tonight. rivera drew sharp criticism with his recent television special on devil worship. but today he found himself in a real free-for-all. >> i get sick and tired of seeing uncle tom here, sucking up, trying to be a white man -- >> go ahead. go ahead. >> sit down. >> hey, hold it. hold it. >> sit down. >> rivera suffered a broken nose, but he said the show will be broadcast later this month in its entirety. >> well, that's not something i would have done. but there was a lot of hypocrisy.
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one of the major magazines put the picture of geraldo getting hit with a chair on the cover, and the article said, isn't this awful, look what's happened to television. yet they couldn't wait to use it to sell their own magazine. >> let's go to the audience, all right? i want to speak to you guys. >> over the years, broadcasting has deteriorated. and now in this era of deregulation, it's deteriorating further. >> give people light, and they will find their own way. relax, america will survive the talk shows. ♪ slash... and this is the basement slash panic room. maybe what your family needs is a vacation home slash vacation home. find yours on the vrbo app.
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the big thing that changes in the '80s is the number of hours spent watching television goes up. the number of hours spent talking about television goes up. one of the symbols of this phenomenon is "entertainment tonight." >> hi, i'm tom hallic. welcome to our opening night. the premiere edition of "entertainment tonight." >> all of the critics were kind of unanimous in that they said it will never last because there simply isn't enough entertainment news to fill a half hour every night. >> "entertainment tonight" has surveyed tv critics in the united states and canada to find out which television shows had the most impact on viewers over the years. >> now up until this time, nobody had done television like this. nobody.
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>> burt reynolds, the hottest actor in hollywood. >> i'm surprised to see you here. >> well, i'm glad to see you. >> oh, thank you. >> we can meet here every night if you like. >> thank you. >> a lot of what makes successful television programming is being in the right place at the right time. and it was the right time. >> entertainment journalism evolved as viewers got more curious and had more access. until that point, the entertainment business had been something we didn't know all that much about. >> we could go behind the scenes in our effort to really give an insider's look. >> the crafty old j.r. of "dallas" fame was with his mother actress mary martin as he was presented with a star on the hollywood walk of fame. >> it was very honorific of the industry. they would do serious coverage of it. it wasn't salacious. and you would see actors speaking as actors instead of on a johnny carson show. >> what are you like on camera? >> i'm like this. this is on camera. >> this is on camera. >> it was the beginning of a lot of money being made talking
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about entertainment and celebrities. >> robert redford plays the good guy in the movies, but don't tell that to his neighbors in utah, they are still bitter and redford is the target of their ire. >> the audience grew and grew. and that was showing us the appetite for celebrity news was big. it was big. >> get ready for "lifestyles of the rich and famous." television's most dazzling hour of excitement. >> hi, i'm robin leach in monaco. the glittering gem of the riviera. >> and you've got a vip ticket to prince ranier's private party. >> your sunday newspaper is still delivered with the comics around the news. and that was what i always thought "lifestyles" was. we were the comic around the news. except we did it as seriously as they did news. >> finally in the driving seat of his own career, he burned rubber in a new direction. david hasselhoff, rock idol. >> it was a time where pushing
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the limits with wealth and ostentatiousness in a lot of cases was very comfortable. >> one of the earliest stories that we presented to you on "lifestyles" was about the amazing real estate wizard donald trump. if he didn't shock and surprise you back then, he's had plenty of time since. >> with all of this costing billions, not millions, do the figures ever frighten you? >> the answer is no, it's my business, it's my life. it's my lifestyle. i love it. the good, the bad. >> does this bring with it political aspiration? >> no political aspiration. >> your show has gotten a lot of ridicule. there are people who say it's nothing more than trash. >> that doesn't upset me, because i think it's the best trash there is on television. i am not in the business of brain surgery. i am in the business of fluff. >> that's the fantasy element. at a time when the access is possible. it's escapism, and it's aspirational. you want to stand in a hot tub with a glass of champagne, rock on.
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>> we've never seen that kind of wealth ever before. we didn't mock it. we didn't say it was right, and we didn't say it was wrong. we were just through the keyhole. >> sometimes it absolutely amazes me. i walk away from a shoot and i think, well, we did it again. >> there was more of everything in tv by the '80s. your opportunity for watching stuff is increasingly vast. >> nbc presents "real people." >> my name's michael lee wilson. this dawned on me, that the application of a small motor on a pair of roller skates might really be a great thing. >> somebody once said that each one of us will be a star for 15 minutes, and i think that that's probably going to happen. >> american culture used to be a culture that celebrated privacy. in the 1980s as we're watching celebrities sort of play out on stage, hey, i want to join too. all the world becomes a stage. you start seeing shows like "real people" or "the people's court." >> "the people's court." where reality television is
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taken one step further. >> to see more tv, producers had to come up with new and different ways to give them television. >> don't be stupid! >> get over here! >> i told you not to be stupid. >> what "cops" did was, it took away the script and just brought the camera people and the vi viviews -- crews on location to try and catch actual things happening. >> cocaine. possession of a stolen firearm, no less. what else are you going to do? ♪ just shine your light for everyone to see ♪ ♪ and if you try a little kindness ♪ meet jeff. in his life, he's been to the bottom of the ocean. the tops of mountains. the er... twice. and all the places this guy runs off to. like jeff's, a life well lived should continue at home.
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are you a christian author with a book that you're ready to share with the world? get published now, call for your free publisher kit today! ♪ with this ring -- >> with this ring -- >> -- i thee wed. >> -- i thee wed. >> with my body -- >> with my body -- >> -- i thee honor. >> -- i thee honor. >> the biggest television event of the 1980s is the marriage of charles and diana. it's like the world stops when that happened. i mean, that was like just massive. >> this was the final act of a spectacle that may never again be seen again in this century, if ever. >> the archbishop of canterbury called the wedding of prince charles and lady diana spencer today the stuff of fairy tales.
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>> good evening. the royal couple at this hour is off on the honeymoon, while a lot of people here in london tonight are still talking about the events of the day. >> when you have great moments like the royal wedding, they are part of history. and it's done beautifully and everybody has a chance to watch it all on television, and everybody just wants to drink a toast to chuck and di. >> a princess who must now be aware, as it was on this day, that every single move she makes in public will be recorded and observed. a very difficult life indeed. >> we'll be back in just a moment with some closing observations and one final look at what has justifiably been called the wedding of the century. >> by the authority of the state of new york, i pronounce that they are husband and wife. you may kiss the bride. >> your wedding was seen by an astonishing number of people. 16 and 19 million viewers. how do you account for that kind of popularity? >> oh, i can't. i can't.
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the way it's grown is just amazing to me. >> it did appear in the '80s that it was a good time for daytime soap operas, especially for a show like "general hospital" which had that huge success with luke and laura's wedding. >> i remember when luke and laura got married because it was nighttime newsworthy. >> the soap opera discovers the blockbuster mentality, the sweeps month mentality. like, what can we do to get even more people watching? you have a wedding. you have a kidnapping. you have an evil twin. and primetime stole from daytime. >> after "dallas" proved that ewing oil was better than real oil for cbs, the networks rushed to give the public more. >> the great primetime soap operas of the 1980s, "dallas," "dynasty," they're all about excess. this is about being over the top, stabbing each other in the back, going for the gusto, and having fun. >> i know what's wrong with you. the empty-armed madonna.
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mourning the baby that she couldn't have and the baby that she almost got to adopt. that is it, isn't it? >> you miserable bitch! >> there was a bigness to the stories. and they could afford to do it on a network if you're doing one episode a week. you can't do that if you're doing five episodes a week for a daytime show. so just the production value gave it that pizzazz. >> if you can't have it, watch other people with it, or so say the three networks who are programming nearly 40% of their primetime fare with series about the very rich, and the public is devouring it at such a rate that make-believe money has become ratings gold. >> the characters were larger than life, they were more evil and more cunning and manipulative. and more gorgeous. i mean, really, look at the way they were dressed. look at the way they lived. everything, it was fascinating. >> alexis.
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>> yes? >> i didn't thank you for your present. >> it's he you should slap, dear, not i. >> we all wanted to live like everyone on “dynasty,” like the carringtons. and it all just ended up being a wonderful picture of fun and debauchery. >> greed was encouraged in the '80s. there was a sense of conspicuous consumption as being okay. and those shows kind of exploited that. >> primetime families like the carringtons who live here in luxury on the “dynasty” sound stage are not the only rich folk on tv. in the last five years, more than half of all new shows have featured the wealthy. ten years ago, that figure was zero. >> it was an accident. your father's dead. >> "falcon crest" was a wine family. there's lorenzo lamas, and there's ronald reagan's first wife. jane wyman is on that show.
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>> emma is pregnant. >> i know a doctor who can take care of it right away. >> that will never happen. >> all of the shows, where, oh, my god, what's next? what's going to happen with that? he can't get away with that. and then you tune in, it was appointment television. >> what will become of the missing twins on "knots landing"? >> what? >> they all had spinoffs. the "dallas" spinoff "knots landing." "the colbys" was a spinoff for "dynasty." they were seeing how much they could max this stuff out. because it was really successful. >> where's your son miles? isn't he going to be part of this venture or just playing polo as usual? >> the colbys can always find room for another trophy. >> you had these people fighting over oil and mansions and -- it was fantasy, but in a kind of so over the top way that it was fun. >> there's nothing devious about using your femininity.
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>> these shows took themselves so unseriously that they were camp, but that was okay with the central audience that was loving them. >> it was entertainment. we weren't trying to do high drama. we were there to entertain. we were glossy. there was no getting around it, we knew what we were there for, and we did it as best we could. when a cough tries to steal dad's punchlines, he takes robitussin naturals powered by 100% drug-free ingredients. are you gonna leaf me hanging? soothe your cough naturally. ♪ this holiday, let them shine like never before. ♪ this is how we shine. ♪ find the perfect gift at zales. the diamond store. ♪ ♪ you are my fire ♪ ♪ the one desire ♪ ♪ you are, you are, ♪
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australia's most important export may be neither its animals, nor its beers nor its films. could be 55-year-old rupert murdoch. he is in the process of building the most extensive media empire in history. >> it was presumed to be complete and rupert murdoch having disrupted the newspaper business and television business in britain. he arrives in america and basically says i don't see why there should only be three broadcast networks. he says i'm going to make another broadcast network. >> meantime, he will have to become an american citizen if he is to own tv stations here. something he says he is willing to do. >> some people are saying it will take you 20 years to get your fox network on par with the big three. are you prepared to wait that long? >> sure, i intend to live that long, but i don't believe in the 20 years. >> the idea of murdoch's idea for a fourth network was like
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ted turner starting cnn. it's ridiculous. what does he know about television? >> we don't have to reach everyone. there's no question we have an inferior lineup of stations to our counterparts. it means we have to work harder to get our message across and get shows sampled. >> they had an idea in order to succeed we had to differentiate ourselves in the networks. we have to do things they would not do. >> fox started throwing anything against the wall not sure what was going to go. first shows were things like "21 jumpstreet." joan rivers in terms of late night. >> we have been banned in boston, which is wonderful. >> and “the tracey ullman show”" >> oh, please! >> it was a sketch show. and they needed something to go between the sketches. again they were looking for something different. >> i got to have those candy bars. >> you better not be thinking of stealing those candy bars.
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>> that's it! >> "the simpsons" would never have come along had it not been for “the tracey ullman show.” >> ultimately crime hurts the criminal. >> that's not true, mom. i got a free ride home, didn't i? >> bart! >> fox was thrilled that it was different. they said, sure, be experimental, do whatever you want. we're just happy to have a show on the air. >> i'm home. >> "married with children" was their first big, big hit in that way that said if all the rest of television is going this way, we're going that way. >> bud, kelly, you want to come down and help me in the kitchen? there, that should buy us about 10 minutes. seven more than we'll need. >> the title of "married with children" on the script was not "the cosby show." how great. you have to love that.
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they were taking the piss out of american families fun. great fun. >> never wanted to get married, i'm married. never wanted kids, i got two of them. how did this happen? >> the bundys were like a reaction to the perfection of the huxtables. you had this wonderful black family and these horrible miserable white people. it was a lot of fun to be had and al and peg bundy. >> after fox introduces "married with children," it does very well, then back on abc, they came up with another major hit "roseanne." >> you think you just sit up here on your thrown. >> oh, yeah? >> yeah, and you think everything gets done by some wonderful wizard.
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poof, the laundry's folded. poof, dinner's on the table. >> you want me to fix dinner? >> honey. i'm fixing dinner. >> oh, but honey, you just fixed dinner three years ago. >> typical american families weren't on television for the longest time. the donna reed days, the "father knows best." hardly anybody lived that way. that was the way advertisers wanted you to live. >> i know what just might make you feel better. >> me too but i bet it's different than what you got. >> if you can subvert whatever common stuff is said about families and about parenting. >> what's in this? lead? >> oh, i got you kids new leg irons. >> her loudness and her unfilteredness were key to why we liked her. she was saying stuff about working class people, stuff about men and women. so it was about marriage and about raising kids and about how hard it is. >> great. i'm just going to look like a freak. that's all. >> what else is new? >> shut up. >> this is why some animals eat their young. >> tv in the '80s was a big
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decade for the evolution of comedy, for the evolution of drama. it just pushed everything forward. >> you think perhaps this generation are paying more attention to the dialogue to the relationships they see on television than years previous? >> clearly the people watching our shows and "30 something" and "cheers" and "st. elsewhere." these are shows smartly written. it's their words that define them, and i think that's what people like. >> what we're supposed to be here is the one thing people can trust. if you go out like a bunch of night riders, what are you but just another vicious street gang? >> that spawned an extraordinary number of shows that really carved out a unique niche for themselves. we began to turn television into an art form. and for the first time, people were proud to say, i write for television.
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>> up until that point, television was second class. in the '80s, it was something else entirely. and it was new, and it was kind of interesting. >> it's like everyone in the '80s starts to want to tell their stories. that's what really changes things. >> the unexpected was more welcome in the '80s. predictability lost its cachet. >> television has an impact on every era, every decade. >> television still shapes the thinking of america like no other element in our country. sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. >> it gave rise to people pursuing artistic content in a way that i think has raised the bar in television production exponentially. >> i love you guys. >> there's a shift in the '80s from just wanting to placate the audience to wanting to please and challenge the audience, and that's the decade when it happened. >> we had one hell of a run, didn't we partner? >> yeah, we did, sonny. i'm going to miss you, man. >> i'm going to miss you, too.
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>> give you a ride to the airport? >> why not. ♪ as soon as we have intelligent machines creeping into our daily lives, it's going to be a new world out there. >> the popularity of these video games is nothing short of a social phenomenon. >> personal computers, walk-around stereos, automatic cameras, mobile telephones. >> a major moment in the history of flight. >> the experts tell us all of this is just the tip of the iceberg of what's to come. >> there's literally a


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