America in Primetime available in DVD
The ambitious documentary miniseries America in Prime Time approaches television as a mirror of American social attitudes, ideas and archetypes, especially as those categorizations have evolved over the course of the past century. The program undertakes a broad sociological survey; each episode hones in one theme or concept depicted or reflected in U.S. prime time television over the years, and examines how those depictions have gradually changed relative to the periods from which they emerged. This box set contains the entire three-episode sequence. Installment one, Man of the House, looks at the shifting roles of men on the small screen - from simplistic patriarchal breadwinners in the Andy Taylor-era, to the emotionally and psychologically conflicted figures at the heart of such sagas as The Sopranos and Breaking Bad. Installment two, The Crusader, explores the shifting definitions of right and wrong over time, and how television has transitioned from a sense of clear-cut, black-and-white morals and ethics (evidenced by programs such as Father Knows Best and Leave it to Beaver)) to the ambiguity of such programs as 24 and Dexter. Installment three, Independent Woman, studies the gradual liberation of female television characters over time, via reflections on such series as Roseanne and Murphy Brown. Finally, the fourth installment - The Misfit - looks at the growing trend to write eccentric, occasionally anti-social characters into prime time programs, as embodiments of the diverse and colorful personalities in America. Subjects in this episode include Beavis and Butthead, Freaks and Geeks, and Curb Your Enthusiasm.
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Additional exceprts from 20 thought-provoking interviews, including David Chase, Shonda Rhimes, Norman Learn, Bryan Cranston, Felicity Huffman, Mike Judge, Judd Apatow, and David Simon