The Dick Van Dyke Showwhich ran from to on the CBS network, ushered in the golden age of the situation comedy even more than I Love Lucy or The Honeymoonerspoised as it was on the threshold between the comedy-variety star vehicles of the s frequently still grounded in vaudeville and the neorealist socio-comedies of the early s whose mainstay Mary Tyler Moore carried its pedigree. And more than any other social document, it managed to operate largely contemporaneously with the New Frontier and the thousand days of the Kennedy presidency. The show was largely the autobiographical exegesis of Carl Reiner, whose previous tenure in workaday television had been with the legendary stable of writers surrounding Your Show of Shows and the Sid Caesar sketch vehicles of the mids. But first and foremost was Dick Van Dyke, based loosely on Reiner's novel Enter Laughing he directed a tepid screen version inin which his Alan Brady is a thinly veiled Caesar--a comic monster, sporadically seen but ubiquitously felt.
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With so many new series popping up on streaming services and DVD every day, it gets harder and harder to keep up with new shows, much less the all-time classics. With TV Club 10we point you toward the 10 episodes that best represent a TV series, classic or modern. These are not meant to be the 10 best episodes, but rather the 10 most representative episodes. When the Clampett family waved goodbye at the end of each episode of The Beverly Hillbilliesmillions of viewers switched the channel or turned off the TV, but enough of them stuck around to see a lanky guy walk into his modern suburban home and trip or almost trip over an ottoman in a much more sophisticated, quite different kind of sitcom.
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