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With Fred Rogers’ life and work receiving renewed attention with the release of a documentary in 2018 and a major film this year, his understated approach reveals ways his message is still relevant today to both kids and adults. […] Read More

‘The Neighborhood’

“The Neighborhood,” a new comedy starring Cedric the Entertainer and Max Greenfield on CBS, raises important questions about racism and race relations, community and diversity. […] Read More

NBC’s new game show “The Wall” is troubling. I’ve only seen one episode, but from the very beginning there was something off-putting about the show. I have to admit, though, that it hooked me. I watched until the end, I couldn’t look away, and I’m ashamed. “The Wall” appeals to what’s worst in us, and […] Read More

A new television sitcom, “The Grinder,” holds up a mirror that should make us ashamed or at least embarrassed. I watch a lot of television because it helps me keep in touch with popular culture and my students. Knowing what’s on TV helps me relate to students and understand American culture. Karl Barth is supposed […] Read More

Television commercials offer cultural insight, with their content and presentation methods serving as a tool for social analysis. On a recent evening, my wife and I were watching a sit-com via a network’s streaming option, and I noticed that the same ads were repeated during most commercial breaks. Two ads were for food products, containing […] Read More

ABC has been promoting its new drama “Resurrection” for months with the tag, “What if someone you lost … returned?” The premise of the series is that at least two people who had died in the small town of Arcadia, Mo., have returned to life and have come home to those they had left behind. […] Read More

Like all “Baby Boomers,” I grew up with television.          I cut my teeth on “Captain Kangaroo” and “Sesame Street” and graduated to sitcoms such as “The Andy Griffith Show,” “Bewitched” and “Gilligan’s Island” On Saturday mornings, I awoke early and enjoyed the host of characters from Warner Brothers. It’s amazing that Mel Blanc was the voice […] Read More

If you’re in the United States, you no doubt noticed that Nov. 10 marked the 40th anniversary of the first broadcast of “Sesame Street.” Memories of watching this public broadcast program as children is something that almost all Americans have in common. We all watched. It’s how many of us learned to count, recognize the […] Read More

When the TV news outlets get their teeth into a story they really go overboard, chewing it for all it’s worth. They did this recently with Anna Nicole Smith’s death, day after day, with items and guesses about the blonde bombshell from Mexia, Texas, who became famous for marrying a rich old man and fighting […] Read More

Audiences of Comedy Central’s “Daily Show” and “Colbert Report” had the best knowledge of current events, while Fox News viewers had no more knowledge than the average American, according to a Pew Research Center poll released Sunday. The survey found that the emergence of 24-hour cable news and the Internet since the late 1980s has […] Read More