By the end of the 1960's nearly 95% of American's had a television in their home. As a result you see a dramatic rise in the number of shows, the diversity of shows and a decline of Drive-In and traditional movie theaters.
Westerns continue to be a proven winner in terms of ratings and returns, but as the nation's interests diversified and television became more prevalent a growth in Game Show programming began and produced some of the most popular game shows ever to air including The Price is Right and Jeopardy.
The rise of the Saturday morning cartoons became popular during this time as well with shows that promote traditional values and cultural trends. Shows like The Jetsons built on America's fascination with space and the future and shows like Scooby-Doo played on our growing interest in police and detective dramas.
During this time we also see a rise in broadcast journalism reporting the news of the day both locally and nationally. While many of the shows of the time portrayed the mainstream culture in America the news showcased the rising tensions and complex political climate of the times.
Task 1: Watch the Introductory Video to this Unit (5 minutes)
Task 2: Review the provided videos and attached links for television during the 1960's (10 minutes)
Task 3: Dig deeper into one of the Television Shows presented in this area of focus for the 1960’s (25 minutes)
Select One of the Television Shows Presented in the 1960’s
Go to GOOGLE CLASSROOM and Claim the Google Slide has your selection
Only One Person Per Slide (there are at least TWO slides for each selectable option)
If Your First Selection is Taken Select Another Choice
Research Information About Your Selection
Provide a summary of the Show
Remember You Are Providing a Summary For The Series Not The Linked Clip AND The Years The Show Aired(TV Show)
Add Images and Information to Your Google Slide
Review Your Findings With Anyone Who Completed the Same Show
Task 4: Share Your Findings With The Class (With Anyone Who Completed the Same Show) (10 minutes)
Television dramas really got their start in the 1960s. Although there were a few dramatic programs in the 1950s, they didn’t really catch on until the 60s, when hour-long programming began to grow more popular. Many of the biggest shows of the decade were more dramatic than the ever-popular sitcoms. Westerns were huge in the 60s, with hit dramas like "Bonanza," "Gunsmoke," and "Have Gun—Will Travel." These western programs lasted longer than most TV shows in history. Bonanza aired for 14 seasons, while "Gunsmoke" lasted 20. (https://www.ranker.com/list/best-60s-drama-shows/ranker-tv )
The Little House on the Prairie
The Real McCoys
In the 1960s, television was still relatively new, and there wasn’t much in the way of programming. The concept of games on television began in the 1950s, so many of the earliest game shows aired during the 1960s as well. Some of the world’s most famous game shows got their start in the 1960s, such as "The Dating Game," "Jeopardy," and "The Newlywed Game." Not all the game shows that aired in the 1960s had a long shelf life. Shows like "PDQ," "Dream House," and "The Generation Gap" were short lived but enjoyed by audiences nonetheless. (https://www.ranker.com/list/best-60s-game-shows/ranker-tv )
The Price is Right
From their post-WWII inception, American sitcoms showcased primarily affluent, aspirational, white families; think of the Cleavers on “Leave it to Beaver,” the Anderson's on “Father Knows Best,” and the Nelsons on “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.” An academic study of 262 situational comedies from 1946-1990 revealed that only 11 percent of programs featured blue-collar characters as heads of household - the most notable were the two “ethnic” comedies that came directly from old radio programs like “The Goldbergs” and “Amos ‘n’ Andy.” In the 1950s and 1960s, the genre was dominated by professional, college-educated protagonists and their impressive, pristine homes. (The only real exception was “The Honeymooners,” which aired in the mid-1950s and starred Jackie Gleason as New York City bus driver and would-be domestic batterer Ralph Kramden.) Everything changed in the 1970s, when the media “discovered” the American working class... (https://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/history-working-class-families-american-sitcom-180968555/ )
The Addams Family
The Beverly Hillbillies
Saturday morning cartoons have been an integral part of the American television scene since the 1960s. Saturday morning is unlike any other time of the programming week in that the viewing audience is more monolithic than any other. At no other time do so many stations broadcast such similar material for such an extended period of time, all aimed at the same audience: children. Several generations of children have planned their weekends around the ritual of pouring huge bowls of sugar-saturated cereal and gathering about the television for the week's dose of animation. (https://www.encyclopedia.com/media/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/saturday-morning-cartoons )
Late-night talk shows are truly an American contribution to the world of TV. They founded their origins from variety shows which started to take off during the 1940s and the 1950s. They were called “variety shows” because they showcased different kinds of entertainment such as comedy sketches, music and dance numbers, acrobatics, magic tricks, juggling, etc. Variety shows were typically shown on the prime-time slot (usually 7:00 to 10:00 in the evening), where most families would usually stay in their own living rooms and watch TV after a tiring day of work and household chores.
Late night talk shows really hit its stride when Johnny Carson took over in 1962, and it’s from that point when The Tonight Show became a permanent fixture among the night-owls. The Tonight Show, as well as Carson himself, transformed into TV legends. Carson continued hosting The Tonight Show until his retirement in 1992, and comedian Jay Leno eventually took over the hosting chores. (https://mentalitch.com/the-short-history-of-the-late-night-talk-show/ )
The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson
Ed Sullivan Show
The NFL on TV
Congress’ 1961 decision to allow sports leagues to negotiate their own collective television contracts let the NFL set up a system to share annual television revenue equally among all teams.
Before then, big-market teams like the New York Giants could earn 10 times as much money as small-market teams like the Green Bay Packers, which gave the Giants much more cash to sign the best players. But by equally distributing the television revenue — in addition to sharing revenue from other sources, such as merchandising and ticket sales — the league ensures that every team has the financial ability to compete on and off the field.
The NFL’s revenue sharing has maintained competitiveness across all teams and has helped the league avoid financial disparities faced by other sports that gave teams nearly insurmountable advantages. (https://operations.nfl.com/the-game/impact-of-television/ )
National Football League Hosts First Super Bowl
Super Bowl I took place on January 15, 1967, and included the NFL’s Green Bay Packers against the AFL’s Kansas City Chiefs.
The game was held at the Los Angeles Coliseum, and even though ticket prices averaged just $12, it was the only Super Bowl that didn’t sell out.
Still, the game aired on two different networks and drew in an audience of more than 61,000 fans.
The Packers outperformed the Chiefs, winning 35-10. The next year, the Packers decisively won again in Super Bowl II, defeating the Oakland Raiders 33-14. Many began to question whether the AFL teams could hold their own in the NFL.
But the next year, the AFL’s New York Jets, led by quarterback Joe Namath, defeated the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III. Super Bowl IV was the last game played between the two leagues, and the AFL’s Kansas City Chiefs beat the Minnesota Vikings, 23-7. (https://www.history.com/topics/sports/super-bowl-history )