DAVID BIANCULLI

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1982: 'Glee' Precursor 'Fame' Makes its Debut
January 7, 2017  | By TV WW
 
On this day in 1982, NBC introduced the drama, Fame, a series spun from the same-name 1980 film set in New York City's High School for the Performing Arts.

Much like Fox's Glee, the series followed the lives and dramas of high school students and featured well-produced music and dance performances. Unlike Glee, Fame was not an immediate hit with viewers. In August, 1983, NBC canceled the series. Producers responded by continuing production on a syndicated version of the series. The show ran through 1987 in syndication.

Notable cast members included Debbie Allen (who starred in the 1980 film, along with her TV castmates Albert Hague, Gene Anthony Ray and Lee Curreri), Cynthia Gibb, Lori Singer, Nia Peeples and the Jacksons' little sister, Janet Jackson.
 
 
 
 
 
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Good news, TVWW readers: David’s new book from Doubleday, The Platinum Age of Television: From I Love Lucy to The Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific is available on Amazon for $20.

Doubleday says: “Darwin had 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."

"The Platinum Age of Television is an effusive guidebook that plots the path from the 1950s’ Golden Age to today’s era of quality TV. For instance, animation evolved from Rocky and His Friends to South Park; variety shows moved from The Ed Sullivan Show to Saturday Night Live; and family sitcoms grew from I Love Lucy to Modern Family. A high point is the author’s interviews with Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Bob Newhart, Matt Groening, Larry David, Amy Schumer and many others...Bianculli has written a highly readable history." —The Washington Post