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80 Years of Television (and Our) History
As Told in a Few Dozen Short Stories
2020

"...  compelling, enjoyable stuff..."

"Former TV exec, teaches college students about the medium, brilliant researcher and writer, Jim McKairnes is a kindred spirit who loves TV even more than I do (didn't know that was possible). Tune into his weekly podcast on TV's past, present and future."

--  Wendell Foster

network TV executive, Los Angeles

For Unto Us, A Prime-Time Classic is Born

"A Charlie Brown Christmas" (1965)

charliebrown
00:00 / 14:41

Hello and Goodbye, Freddie Prinze

"Chico and the Man" (1973)

chico
00:00 / 13:32

When Real Life Meets Screen Life

"24" (2001)

24
00:00 / 14:48

Fred Silverman: A Celebration of Television's Biggest Off-Screen Star (2020)

silverman
00:00 / 17:35

Crime Re-Imagined

"The Wire" (2002)

wire
00:00 / 15:09

Rated R

"NYPD Blue" (1992)

nypdblue
00:00 / 14:44

The Real World of TV Teenagers

"James at 15" (1977)

james15
00:00 / 14:57

A Long Way From Barney Fife

"Barney Miller" (1982)

barneymiller
00:00 / 17:18

A Cable Classic Signs Off ... Or Does It?

"The Sopranos" (2007)

sopranos
00:00 / 15:16

When the Minority Joined the Top 10 

"The Jeffersons" (1975)

jeffersons
00:00 / 16:34

The Streaming Age Begins 

"House of Cards" (2013)

houseofcards
00:00 / 09:20

Life & Death

& The Early Days of  Broadcast News 

Kathy Fiscus (1949)

kathyfiscus
00:00 / 16:53

TV, Like the World, on the Verge

of Adolescence (1969)

1969
00:00 / 10:00

When TV Got Out-FOXed (1986)

foxtv
00:00 / 17:32

Jiggle TV Arrives (1977)

JiggleTVjmck - 1_30_20, 8.23 AM
00:00 / 12:51

Columbine: The Headlines of Prime-Time

 (1999)

columbine
00:00 / 13:24

What Exactly Were They Thinking?

"The Jay Leno Show" (2009)

Leno
00:00 / 14:04

One-and Done Blunders

"Emily's Reasons Why Not" (2006)

emily
00:00 / 12:40

The Very First TV Commercial (1941)

commercials
00:00 / 08:10

A Final Bow In Front of the Camera for 

Mary Tyler Moore (2013)

mtm
00:00 / 15:27

The Worst TV Shows Ever Made (1992)

jlc
00:00 / 24:37

Faked Alaska / Real Emotions

"Northern Exposure" (1990)

northernexp
00:00 / 14:56

The Time When A TV Commercial

Taught the World to Sing (1971)

hilltop
00:00 / 13:32

Janet Jackson and the Super Bowl (2004)

JANET
00:00 / 07:51

The (First) David Letterman Show (2015)

letterman
00:00 / 13:18

The Heidi Bowl (1968)

heidi
00:00 / 20:34

Pepsi and Blasphemy:

Madonna's "Like A Prayer" Commercial (1989)

madonna
00:00 / 17:23

 A Presidential Assassination and the Arrival of Breaking News (1963)

kennedy
00:00 / 14:47

"Lost" and Found (2004)

lost
00:00 / 13:35

Are You Ready for Some Football? (1970)

mnf
00:00 / 12:32

The End of Lucy and Ricky (1960)

lucy1960
00:00 / 18:03

The Short TV Life of Richard Pryor

"The Richard Pryor Show" (1977)

pryor
00:00 / 13:25

"Modern Family" = Modern Sitcom (2008)

modernfamily
00:00 / 16:26

Off-Broadway Shock Comes to PBS (1973)

steambath
00:00 / 13:16

When the Cop Drama Grew Up

"Hill Street Blues" (1981)

hsb
00:00 / 15:43

How a Sitcom Covered

a Real-Life Tragedy

"WKRP in Cincinnati"(1980)

wkrp
00:00 / 18:47

93 Million People Watch

The Battle of the Sexes (1973)

tennis
00:00 / 20:09

The Quiz Show Scandals (1958)

dotto
00:00 / 15:03

When Cancelled Series Are Frankensteined (2016)

Rebootjmck - 1_30_20, 8.14 AM
00:00 / 10:07

A Changing of the New Year Guard (1972)

nye
00:00 / 13:19

Can a Bathroom Joke Put a Late-Night Show in the Toilet? (1960)

paar
00:00 / 09:05

That Certain November When Prime-Time Tackled That Certain Topic

"That Certain Summer" (1972)

summer
00:00 / 15:33

Peace, Love and "Soul Train" (1967)

soultrain
00:00 / 14:48

Can a Class of High-Schoolers Write a TV Episode? This One Did

"Bewitched" (1970)

sisters
00:00 / 11:22

The Worst TV Series Ever? (1980)

pinklady
00:00 / 12:36

Counter-Culture Goes Mainstream: The Arrival of "NBC's Saturday Night" (1975)

SNL
00:00 / 10:09

When All the Pain and Heartache Proved Worthwhile for Philo Farnsworth (1969)

philo
00:00 / 13:58

The Year That CBS Got Rid of "Every Show With a Tree In It" (1971)

purge
00:00 / 10:17