They were the stars of the small screen in the early years of television, and much of the nation came to a halt whenever their shows aired. As the originators of these innovative television formats, they provided an essential escape for millions of viewers who eagerly waited to watch them each week.Visit Pioneers of Television Website
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See how America’s top standup comics made the transition to the sitcom format.
"Roots," "Rich Man, Poor Man" and "The Thorn Birds" mastered the art of storytelling.
They fought villains, rescued the innocent and became role models to viewers of every age.
"Dallas," "Dynasty" and "Knots Landing" were all part of the nighttime soap frenzy.
This episode celebrates the first comediennes to appear on television.
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George Clooney used his popularity to speak out against discrimination.
Howie Mandel thought he was auditioning for a sitcom.
Noah Wyle discusses the character growth of Dr. John Carter.
"St.Elsewhere" was the first show to portray the medical community accurately.
Legendary comedian Bob Newhart describes his first TV role as psychologist Robert Hartley.
Together, comics Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David created the hit sitcom "Seinfeld" in 1989.
Jerry Seinfeld describes the challenging act of "getting a laugh."
With her sitcom, Roseanne Barr made waves by fearlessly tackling difficult issues.
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This episode traces the story of people of color on American television.
This episode reveals the backstage techniques of America’s favorite comedic actors.
Explore television’s long love affair with doctors and nurses from ER to Dr. Kildare.
More than 200 stars bring their stories to life in Season 4 of Pioneers of Television.
This episode reveals how America’s top comics made the transition from stage to screen.
Premieres Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT. Check your local listings.
Premieres Tuesday, January 29, 2013 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT. Check your local listings.
Premieres Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT. Check your local listings.