David Bianculli

Copyright 2021 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

Copyright 2021 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST:

Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, the creators of NBC's new sitcom Mr. Mayor, were deep into the run of their hit 30 Rock when they came up with a promising idea for a spinoff. How about taking Jack Donaghy, the corporate executive played by Alec Baldwin, and have him run for mayor — and win?

The pandemic redefined television in 2020 — and the evolution isn't over. Production of scripted TV series has stalled or been delayed and redesigned because of health and safety concerns, and major movies and small-scale independent films and documentaries are now premiering in our homes, on television. Streaming services have become so prominent they rival, and often dwarf, the broadcast networks with their offerings.

Copyright 2020 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

DAVID BIANCULLI, BYLINE: This is FRESH AIR. I'm David Bianculli, editor of the website TV Worth Watching, sitting in for Terry Gross. "The Carol Burnett Show," one of TV's classic variety shows, ran on CBS from 1967 to 1978. In terms of musical variety, it's a significant chapter in TV history. Carol admired the work of Sid Caesar on TV's first great sketch series, "Your Show Of Shows," at the start of the '50s.

Copyright 2020 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm TV critic David Bianculli.

Copyright 2020 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

Richard Pryor, David Letterman, Jay Leno, Roseanne Barr, Chris Rock, Jim Carrey and Whoopi Goldberg are just a handful of the big name comics who got their start at Los Angeles' famed Comedy Store.

When Fargo premiered on FX in 2014, the anthology miniseries promised to present its own take on the oddball spirit and quirky plots and characters of the brilliant 1996 movie by Joel and Ethan Coen. At the time, I didn't think series creator Noah Hawley could pull it off — but he did.

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