The Platinum Age of Television

The Platinum Age of Television: From I Love Lucy to The Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific by David Bianculli

PN 1992.3 .U5 B57 2016

“One of our best television critics explains – historically, in depth, and with probing interviews with the celebrated creators themselves – how the art of must-see/binge-watch television has evolved and why TV shows have eclipsed films as the premier form of visual narrative art in our time.

Darwin has his theory of evolution, and David Bianculli has his. Bianculli’s theory has to do with the concept of quality television: what it is and, crucially, how it got that way. In tracing the evolution of our progress toward a Platinum Age of Television – our age, the era of The Sopranos and Breaking Bad and Mad Men and The Wire and Homeland and The Walking Dead and The Americans and Girls – he focuses on the development of classic TV genres, among them the sitcom (in three flavors), the crime show, the miniseries, the soap opera, the Western, the animated series, the medical drama, and the variety show. In each genre he selects five key examples of the form, tracing its continuities and its dramatic departures and drawing on exclusive and in-depth interviews with many of the most famed auteurs in television history. The interviewees include Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Larry David, Amy Schumer, Vince Gilligan, David Chase, Matthew Weiner, Carol Burnett, Aaron Sorkin, Louis C.K., and Larry Wilmore.

Television has triumphantly come of age artistically. What was once denounced as a “vast wasteland” now flourishes as a garden of art and entertainment for viewers of all ages and tastes. The Platinum Age of Television is the first book to date to examine in full detail, and with a keen critical and historical sense, how this inspiring development came about.”
– publisher description

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