18 January 2009

Golden age of television?

I've been impressed with the quality of television shows the last few years and started thinking about whether television has finally matured as an art form. Every type of media (e.g. movies, plays, musicals) starts out as a crude amusement and later evolves into sophisticated, challenging entertainment [1]. Is this the moment for TV?

I found an article called "Welcome to the Third Golden Age of Television," which supports my thinking. It's a little old (from 2007), but does a nice job of arguing why we are living in a golden age for TV.

[1] Movies started with silent film, Charlie Chaplin, and "Steamboat Willie" in the 1920s. Masterpieces like Lawrence of Arabia and Dr. Strangelove came in the 60s. Musicals have their roots in vaudeville. Rodgers and Hammerstein changed the musical from a shabby shell for some songs to a cohesive, organic story. Then Sondheim came along with his groundbreaking Company in 1970. (I feel weird writing footnotes for my posts.)

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