This episode peeks behind the curtain to reveal the backstage techniques of America’s favorite comedic actors—ranging from Robin Williams’ manic improvisational style to Tina Fey’s measured, highly-prepared approach.
Though producer Norman Lear intended his hit "Good Times" to be a family show with tender, sentimental moments, young actor Jimmie Walker was there to be funny. According to Jimmie, every sitcom needed a goofy, comedic player to "take the pie."
This episode traces the story of people of color on American television—including the breakthroughs of African-Americans Diahann Carroll (Julia) and Bill Cosby (I Spy); Latinos Desi Arnaz (I Love Lucy) and Edward James Olmos (Miami Vice); and Asian-Americans George Takei (Star Trek) and Margaret Cho (All American Girl).
From George Clooney on ER to Richard Chamberlain on Dr. Kildare, television’s long love affair with doctors and nurses shows no signs of letting up. Noah Wyle, Anthony Edwards, Gloria Reuben, Howie Mandel, Ed Begley Jr., Chad Everett and others tell their stories.
This star-packed episode reveals how America’s top standup comics made the transition to the sitcom form; and includes dozens of side-splitting clips from Seinfeld, Home Improvement, Everybody Loves Raymond, Roseanne, and more.
"Roots" co-stars Louis Gossett Jr. and LeVar Burton describe a special scene they shared and all that it implied. Gossett Jr., who played the character Fiddler, spontaneously added a line of his own when comforting the young Kunta Kinte, played by Burton. "Roots" author Alex Haley, who was also on the set, let the line remain.
Survey decades of superheroes, from “Superman” in the 1950s to "Batman" in the 60s to "Wonder Woman" in the 70s and “The Greatest American Hero” in the 80s. This Pioneers of Television episode premieres Tuesday, January 29, 2013 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT. Check your local listings.
Trace the arc of nighttime soaps, from “Peyton Place” to “Knots Landing.” Primetime Soaps premieres Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 8:00 p.m ET/PT. Check your local listings.
Actress Mary Tyler Moore describes how she nearly didn't go to the audition for "The Dick Van Dyke Show." She wowed the show's creator and director, Carl Reiner, and got the part of Laura Petrie, the wife of Rob Petrie (Dick Van Dyke).
In this interview outtake from Funny Ladies, Carol Burnett describes meeting Lucille Ball for the first time and Ball's generous offer to be of help during Burnett's budding career. The two would become close friends and perform on each other's shows. Burnett also shares her favorite anecdote about Lucy.
Margaret Cho and Carol Burnett describe the cast's famous unscripted fits of laughter. Harvey Korman was particularly prone to cracking up at Tim Conway's facial expressions and nuances of comic delivery.