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By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF | October 30, 1996
It's not very raunchy. And it's not very funny.That's the bottom line on "Public Morals," an alleged sitcom that debuts at 9: 30 tonight on CBS (Channel 13). This show would probably sink like a stone were it not for two factors: its pedigree and its penchant for controversy."Public Morals" is the latest offering from Steven Bochco, whose flair for dramatics ("Hill Street Blues," "L.A. Law," "NYPD Blue") has made him one of the most powerful men in television."Morals" won't change that, but it won't convince anyone to label him a comic genius, either; It's nothing more than a series of wisecracks, lines of incidental dialogue that would barely be noticed on an episode of "Blue."
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By David Zurawik | July 29, 2005
The premiere of Over There, cable channel FX's drama about the war in Iraq, was seen by 4.1 million viewers Wednesday night, making it one of the 10 highest-rated debuts in the history of basic cable and the highest rated series of the night on cable TV. The series from Steven Bochco and Chris Gerolmo, the first prime-time drama to depict an ongoing war, scored with young viewers drawing an audience of 2.4 million viewers 18 to 49 years of age. ...
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By David Kronke and David Kronke,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | January 12, 1996
PASADENA, Calif. -- Watching "Murder One," ABC's critically acclaimed, but audience-impaired drama is "not rocket science," insisted Steven Bochco, the series' creator, during a press conference at the Television Critics Association winter meeting yesterday.Mr. Bochco defended the series, which examines one murder trial in serial form over the course of its run, against charges that potential viewers fear the show is too complicated and that too much has already happened."People are worried that they may not understand every reference, but they don't need to to follow the storyline," said Mr. Bochco.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | May 30, 2000
Public television so seldom goes beyond the mainstream that we need to celebrate virtually every moment that it does. One of the few consistent providers of such moments on PBS is "In the Life," a monthly newsmagazine devoted to gay and lesbian cultural matters. It is television's only national news- magazine that deals with such issues, and this month's edition, airing tonight on MPT, is one of the year's finest. The focus is on gay and lesbian filmmakers, and there are three segments worth going out of your way to see: one on Paris Barclay, an Emmy Award-winning producer of TV drama; another on a documentary by Monika Treut about a support group in San Francisco for transgendered persons; and a third on German filmmaker Ulrike Ottinger, known for her queer epics and fantastic feminist fantasies.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | September 22, 1997
Inside the precinct house under the big American flag, it's morning roll call in Precinct 74."Doyle. Roussakoff.""Sarge, here."When outside on the streets, a crack addict with a gun suddenly goes berserk and starts blowing people away right in front of the cop shop.Bam, bam, bam."Hill Street Blues" meets "Apocalypse Now" for one of the most powerful openings of a new series in television history when Steven Bochco's "Brooklyn South" debuts tonight on CBS. If you watch no other new series this fall, don't miss this one.And be there at 10 sharp.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | September 14, 1997
Los Angeles -- The guard at the front gate of the 20th Century Fox studio lot here is giving directions to the offices of television producer Steven Bochco, but they also lead straight to the heart of American popular culture."
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By David Zurawik | November 13, 1990
ABC pulled the plug yesterday on "Cop Rock," one of the most critically acclaimed new shows of the season.The last episode of the Steven Bochco show, which coupled police drama with music, will air Dec. 26, ABC Entertainment President Robert Iger said."
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By David Zurawik | July 29, 2005
The premiere of Over There, cable channel FX's drama about the war in Iraq, was seen by 4.1 million viewers Wednesday night, making it one of the 10 highest-rated debuts in the history of basic cable and the highest rated series of the night on cable TV. The series from Steven Bochco and Chris Gerolmo, the first prime-time drama to depict an ongoing war, scored with young viewers drawing an audience of 2.4 million viewers 18 to 49 years of age. ...
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By David Zurawik | September 28, 1990
"Cop Rock," the critically acclaimed cop-show-as-musical from Steven Bochco, debuted with low ratings Wednesday night. "Cop Rock" finished third behind "Hunter" on NBC and a special on "Mike Wallace" on CBS, according to Nielsen overnight ratings from the nation's largest television markets.Worse news for "Cop Rock" is that the show lost about 2 million of the television households provided by its lead-in show on ABC, "Married People." ABC yesterday emphasized that "Cop Rock" finished first among the three shows with people 18 to 49 years old.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,Television Critic | January 12, 1994
Steven Bochco says that even he didn't anticipate the firestorm of controversy that greeted "NYPD Blue" this fall, and that he hopes it's finally starting to ebb."Sure, I anticipated some of the controversy last summer when ** we began to get so much attention so many months before the show was on," Bochco, the show's creator, said yesterday."But it just snowballed and intensified."And there was a point where it was very uncomfortable."There was a point where I was genuinely dismayed at the vehemence and the willingness by people to give in to censorship instead of just saying, "OK, this is not my cup of tea, and I'll just watch something else.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | January 11, 2000
Seeing tonight's season premiere of "NYPD Blue" made me mad all over again about ABC's crackpot decision to give its time slot to "Once and Again" until "Monday Night Football" ended. I forgot how great this series is when it's on its game, and "NYPD Blue" is definitely on its game tonight. Much of the hour is spent with Detectives Andy Sipowicz (Dennis Franz) and Danny Sorenson (Rick Schroder) investigating the possibility that two fellow officers beat to death a low-life known as Poodlehead Mikey.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,Sun Television Critic | September 12, 1999
With the rhetoric flying from all directions last week in the wake of Viacom buying CBS for $38 billion, it was not easy for viewers to understand what the transaction would mean to their lives.Analysts called it a threat to our democratic way of life and the "end of network television as we knew it," without saying who exactly "we" were and what it was we "knew."The Viacom-CBS deal is a major development, but not a watershed moment in broadcasting history. Disney-ABC and Time-Warner were watersheds because they took us into the current super-conglomerate era of network TV. Viacom-CBS is the continuation of that trend, which experts are predicting will culminate in a Sony-NBC deal.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | August 2, 1999
LOS ANGELES -- It was one of the hottest Fox Television parties in years. Calista Flockhart and Gillian Anderson in the same room. How could it get any better? Then in walked David E. Kelley with his wife, actress Michelle Pfeiffer. There was a feeding frenzy of television critics instantly surrounding the couple. But all the questions were going to Pfeiffer. After a few minutes, Kelley slipped away, almost unnoticed. "Happens all the time," he said matter-of-factly as he surveyed the scene of two dozen reporters sticking microphones and tape recorders in his wife's face and hanging on her every word.
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By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,Sun Staff | July 21, 1998
Rick Schroder replacing Jimmy Smits?Had Steven Bochco lost his mind?More than a few people were wondering just that last month, when it was announced that the brooding, charismatic Jimmy Smits would be leaving Bochco's "NYPD Blue" next season. To fill his shoes, Bochco will be counting on former child star Rick Schroder, who will forever remain, in many people's minds, as that cute Ricky Stratton on NBC's "Silver Spoons" from 1982 to 1986.And that announcement was just the opening salvo in what promises to be a bombardment of cast changes this season in some of television's finest dramas.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | July 17, 1998
PASADENA, Calif. -- Can Rick (a k a Ricky) Schroder make the journey in viewers' minds from child star in "Silver Spoons" to adult detective on the mean streets of "NYPD Blue"?That's the question that was asked a dozen different ways here this week as Schroder -- accompanied by producers Steven Bochco and David Milch, as well as co-star Dennis Franz -- met with television critics in Step 1 of their sales campaign for the new Rick Schroder. He takes Jimmy Smits' place on the show this fall.
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By Rob "Robbie" Hiaasen | June 18, 1998
TO: Steven Bochco, creator of "NYPD Blue"FROM: A television set ownerSUBJECT: Rick SchroderDear Mr B.:The word out of Hollywood is you might hire one Rick Schroder to replace Jimmy Smits, who's leaving your "NYPD Blue" crime drama early next season. Through some old-fashioned reporting, we have learned that Rick Schroder's known alias is "Ricky" Schroder, co-star of the tear-jerking movie "The Champ" and star of the former side-splitting sitcom "Silver Spoons."Frankly Mr. B., we're baffled.
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By Steve McKerrow and Steve McKerrow,SUN STAFF | September 19, 1995
Three new series -- including Steven Bochco's latest -- two original made-for-TV movies and season premieres of "Roseanne," "Wings," "NewsRadio" and "Frasier" -- make a complicated evening to schedule."
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | July 17, 1998
PASADENA, Calif. -- Can Rick (a k a Ricky) Schroder make the journey in viewers' minds from child star in "Silver Spoons" to adult detective on the mean streets of "NYPD Blue"?That's the question that was asked a dozen different ways here this week as Schroder -- accompanied by producers Steven Bochco and David Milch, as well as co-star Dennis Franz -- met with television critics in Step 1 of their sales campaign for the new Rick Schroder. He takes Jimmy Smits' place on the show this fall.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | September 22, 1997
Inside the precinct house under the big American flag, it's morning roll call in Precinct 74."Doyle. Roussakoff.""Sarge, here."When outside on the streets, a crack addict with a gun suddenly goes berserk and starts blowing people away right in front of the cop shop.Bam, bam, bam."Hill Street Blues" meets "Apocalypse Now" for one of the most powerful openings of a new series in television history when Steven Bochco's "Brooklyn South" debuts tonight on CBS. If you watch no other new series this fall, don't miss this one.And be there at 10 sharp.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | September 14, 1997
Los Angeles -- The guard at the front gate of the 20th Century Fox studio lot here is giving directions to the offices of television producer Steven Bochco, but they also lead straight to the heart of American popular culture."
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