|The Screening Room|
Americans have a bond with television. We almost always have since the
earliest days of images coming directly into our homes. From childhood
through our elder years, even the most finicky television viewers have
bonded with something or somebody on television. The four-part PBS
special, "Pioneers of Television," casts a spotlight on some of the
innovative personalities who caught our eyes and ears. The specials are
now on DVD.
For what it's worth, "Pioneers" is still very good entertainment and will give audiences a short history lesson on early television. Seeing some of the clips from the shows this series presents is a lot of fun. I found myself laughing hard when the clips from "The Carol Burnett Show" were on. And I had forgotten how funny Paul Lynde's quips were on "The Hollywood Squares."
It's been said over the years that
television is a "vast wasteland," or it's been called the "idiot box" or
"boob tube." There's been some awful television over the years, and I'm
guilty of watching a lot of it. The programs highlighted on "Pioneers of
Television" show that there was, and still is, some high quality
entertainment. Television, for better or for worse, has provided
Americans (and the world) moments that become etched in our memories. We
may not remember all the events in our lives, but we certainly can
remember what we saw on television.