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» iRewind Talk » Movies » « 80's Movies » Mini-series of the 80's (long post and rant)

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Author Topic: Mini-series of the 80's (long post and rant)
StevenHW
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Here's something that we probably haven't discussed before on this board...the mini-series of the 80's! [Cool]

With the new Tom Cruise movie "The Last Samurai" just released (and no, I have not seen it yet), it reminded me of the time when the TV mini-series "Shogun" was shown on the NBC network. It featured Richard Chamberlain, who was the king of the 80's miniseries.

At the risk of sounding like Isis, this has got me thinking...why aren't TV mini-series being made anymore? Maybe they're too expensive too produce?

The late 70's and most of the 80's were a time when miniseries flourished: "Roots" was the perhaps the first great example, and then followed by "The Winds of War", "Dream West", "Holocaust", "Centennial", "The Thorn Birds", "War and Remembrance", etc.

The last really successful miniseries was the "Lonesome Dove" series, but that was about ten years ago!

I guess it goes in cycles. The 80's had lots of miniseries, while the late 90's and 2k has so-called "reality shows".

Besides, the major broadcast networks are no longer interested in spending lots of $$$ to produce a miniseries, because it's cheaper to make a documentary or a cheesy reality show.

The only way you can see a miniseries being made today are the cable-TV networks. What little miniseries there were in the 90's (ex: "Tales of the City", "And The Band Played On", etc.) were produced and shown exclusively on cable-TV, like HBO or Showtime.

The main problem that I have with most "reality shows" is that they take place in an unnatural situation. The participants are involved in a setting that was pre-arranged from the start. That is way too contrived. It is not "reality"!

My idea of a "reality show" is to take a look at human behavior with people acting the way they are. Even "Cops" is a true "reality" programming.

I wish somebody would make a documentary series of an actual and real "ordinary" family in a home setting, with camera crews tracking their move. In fact, it actually in the 70's with a series called "An American Family", that was shown on PBS. But that belongs in the 70's Rewind board.

Sorry for the rant! [Roll Eyes]

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Jaymi
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Even "American Choppers" on Discovery is a setup reality show. They are not ALWAYS at each others' throats like they appear. SOme of the dialogue is even worse than 'b' movie talk at times.... [Roll Eyes]
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materialgirl347
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There was a mini series on NBC 2 or 3 years ago called The Tenth Kingdom. it was like a fairy tale and it had cinderella, snow white, ext...
i thought it was good. they should show it again.

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LISA LISA
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It is funny you brought up Shogun...because I wrote about it in a post awhile back, about it and The Thornbirds. I bought both of them through Columbia House, for my mom for a Christmas present. I paid like $185 for both of them, so yikes!!, but I have not seen Shogun since I was maybe 13, and I loved it, and I am dying to get to Xmas, because she has no clue what I got her, and she'll be with me for a week, and I am gonna make her let me watch it again too, while she's here, and then I can tell you all about it again, because I don't remember that much. I know one of them kills themself in it. I have never completely watched all of the Thornbirds the whole way through. I bought Roots for my mom last year, and I never watched it the whole way either. I am dying to get the Lace mini series, and it is like impossible to get in the USA, I know it plays on the Oxygen Channel, and a channel called Wegmans, but I don't get that here.
Don't feel like you can't say what you feel...because I like hearing people's opinions as to what is on tv, and I hate "reality" crap, and taking these total losers and turning them in to the "new type of Celebrities" drives me crazy, they have no talent, they aren't funny, they aren't even attractive half the time. They just got picked. And the reality for me, is there is nothing on t.v anymore.

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RiverPhoenix4life
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Ur right materialgirl!! Tenth Kingdom was a great miniseries. My mom bought it on dvd not to long ago.

Tootles! [Wink]

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Riptide
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Good point about mini series. Believe it or not they are still making them in Canada. Things like Trudeau, the Halifax Explosion and the biker war depicted in Hochelaga. Pretty much canadian stuff. What about Band of Brothers?
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StevenHW
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Riptide writes:
quote:
Good point about mini series. Believe it or not, they are still making them in Canada. Things like Trudeau, the Halifax Explosion and the biker war depicted in Hochelaga. Pretty much Canadian stuff. What about Band of Brothers?
I haven't seen "Band of Brothers", but mainly that's because I don't get HBO.

I understand it's probably the most expensive miniseries to have ever been made, and from what I hear and read about it, it's really good. Especially to anyone who is interested in the stories and history of WW2.

But I mentioned before, it is a shame that the major broadcast (non-cable) TV networks have pretty much stopped doing miniseries. I realize it's a business, but they are more interested in the bottom line instead of creating new and interesting programs. But that has been a longtime complaint. [Frown]

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Jessie the Sunflower Goddess
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My favorite 80s mini series is by far North and South, Book one and Book two. I remember when it came out in 85 or 86 and being only 12 years old waiting for it. I think that the love story portion got me more than anything. It is the first time that I really paid attention to the feeling between a couple that could be created on screen. WOW. It just got better when it lead to films with Top Gun and so on.
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Ali_with_an_i


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The Sci-Fi channel has had some interesting mini series over the past few years. I enjoyed most of them. Hated their version of my beloved Battlestar Galactica. They have good mini series if you're into sci-fi, which Steven is not? Am I right? didn't you say you don't get into all that sci fi and fantasy stuff?

Well anyway. NBC has had a few ms in the lastfew years. One was about Merlin and all this magical stuff. They just don't make them as good or as memorable as they did in the past.

It's hard to profit from them because of all the cable and specialty channels that are out there today. The 3 main networks have lost so many viewers do to all the extra channels. I guess they don't feel like sinking alot of money into a show they feel won't be seen by that many peole.

Well that's my thoughts anyway.

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