DAVID BIANCULLI

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WESTWORLD
March 20, 2017  | By David Bianculli

TCM, 4:00 a.m. ET

 

Once again, here’s another link between different Best Bets offerings tonight. HUMANS, as a TV series, both preceded the HBO series Westworld, and shared its interest in exploring the awakening of consciousness of human-like androids programmed for the amusement and convenience of humans. But HBO’s Westworld, like AMC’s HUMANS, had a much older precedent: The 1973 movie Westworld, which starred Yul Brynner as an out-of-control robot gunslinger. The movie, shown tonight late at night on TCM, was written and directed by Michael Crichton, the fertile imaginative brain that also concocted The Andromeda Strain, Coma, Jurassic Park, Twister and, believe it or not, the smash NBC medical series ER.

 
 
 
 
 
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Good news, TVWW readers: David’s new book from Doubleday, The Platinum Age of Television: From I Love Lucy to The Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific is available on Amazon for $20. (Paperback will be available September 5th, here.)

Doubleday says: “Darwin had his theory of evolution, and David Bianculli has his. Bianculli's theory has to do with the concept of quality television: what it is and, crucially, how it got that way."

"The Platinum Age of Television is an effusive guidebook that plots the path from the 1950s’ Golden Age to today’s era of quality TV. For instance, animation evolved from Rocky and His Friends to South Park; variety shows moved from The Ed Sullivan Show to Saturday Night Live; and family sitcoms grew from I Love Lucy to Modern Family. A high point is the author’s interviews with Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Bob Newhart, Matt Groening, Larry David, Amy Schumer and many others...Bianculli has written a highly readable history." —The Washington Post

 

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