DAVID BIANCULLI

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ERIC GOULD

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GERALD JORDAN

ROGER CATLIN

GARY EDGERTON

CANDACE KELLEY

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30 FOR 30: "YEAR OF THE SCAB"
September 12, 2017  | By David Bianculli

ESPN, 8:00 p.m. ET

 

In this new ESPN 30 for 30 documentary, the year was 1987, and the scabs were the replacement players who came from Canadian teams, or from nowhere, to fulfill dreams of playing pro football in the States by crossing picket lines while regular team players went on strike. Eventually, the focus settles on one team in particular, where the efforts of these often maligned replacement players may have enabled the “real” players, once they returned, to ascend to the Super Bowl that year. For a full review, see Roger Catlin's TV Eye.

 
 
 
 
 
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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 now available in paperback for under $15. 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. Interviews with Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Bob Newhart, Matt Groening, Larry David, Amy Schumer are high points... Bianculli has written a highly readable history." —The Washington Post

 

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