The Fifti21 - Many TV shows were still performed live,...

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The Fifties They watched all the big shows we've heard of. In the beginning, many of them were simply lifted wholesale from radio, including The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet , Our Miss Brooks and The Jack Benny Program . As the decade went on, I Love Lucy , The Milton Berle Show , and the Ed Sullivan Show were new and huge hits. One mega-star who's almost completely forgotten today was Arthur Godfrey, who had two prime time shows and a daytime show for most of the decade (having dominated the radio waves long prior to that). Then he abruptly fired a popular singer on-air for daring to develop a solo career — and then berated him for 'lacking humility'. Just who really lacked humility quickly became evident as more firings followed. Godfrey's folksy, friendly, gee-shucks demeanor was exposed as a sham, and his viewers deserted him.
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Unformatted text preview: Many TV shows were still performed live, which tended to make things much more exciting even than intended . Your average radio/TV drama series when not a soap, generally a detective or other 'mystery play' would seem crude to the point of absurdity today; most of the ancient cliches were by no means yet into Discredited Trope territory. More ambitious dramas, often based on high-end novels, were presented on anthology programs: essentially the Made-for-TV Movie as a weekly series. Comedy, meanwhile, was quietly undergoing a revolution, moving away from slapstick and 'big punchlines' toward a more cerebral, deadpan style, led by the likes of Bob & Ray , Stan Freberg and Ernie Kovacs. It would take some while before this was reflected on your average Sitcom , though....
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