Friday, September 6, 2019

National Read a Book Day: TV-related books

Since it is National Read a Book Day, we are offering some recommendations of books based on series we have spotlighted on the podcast.

Golden Girls Forever by Jim Colucci: A fun book with impressive research.  As I said in a review two years ago I'd be a happy man if every show we covered on the podcast inspired this kind of book--well written, detailed, and offering attractive design and fine production values.

Hailing Taxi by Frank Lovece with Jules Franco: Long out of print, this big 1988 trade paperback does the show justice, offering history, trivia, and critical assessments.

Saturday Night: A Backstage History of Saturday Night Live by Doug Hill and Jeff Weingrad: The mainstream attention of Jim Miller and Tom Shales' oral history overshadowed this one, but I think it remains the definitive history of the original cast years, and to me that's the most interesting period of the series, anyway. Diehard SNL fans really need to read both, but this is one of my favorite TV books. It was written in 1986 but is available on Kindle.

Mary and Lou and Rhoda and Ted by Jennifer Keishin Armstrong: Imperfect book, as I wrote here in a review, but essential for fans of  The Mary Tyler Moore Show.

Come and Knock on Our Door: A Hers and Hers and His Guide to Three's Company by Chris Mann: An excellent overview of a series that may not be seen as high art but sure gives Mann a lot of interesting stuff to write about. This is a very entertaining book

Mike recommends these two comprehensive TV series histories with episode guides:

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: A TV Companion by Patrick Jankiewicz: This book features a lot of a behind-the-scenes information, including interviews with many of the major players. Although clearly a fan, Jakiewicz doesn't steer clear of some of the backstage the problems or acknowledging weaker elements of the show (um, season two.)

Hardcastle and McCormick: A Complete Viewers Guide to the Classic Eighties Action Series by Deb Ohlin: A fun and surprisingly detailed look at the show, including a number of statistical lists about everything from car chases to various forms of problem-solving violence.


We still await the definitive histories of Silver Spoon, The Facts of Life, and many more!

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