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Hollywood, Calif. the Los Angeles-based Parents Television Council (PTC),a non-partisan, non-profit, grassroots organization, released its annual list of the Top Ten (10) Best & Worst Shows on Prime Time Network Television.  Six of the ten shows making the PTC's "Best List" for the 2001/2002 season are new, and most will be returning in the fall, indicating a possible trend by the networks to give family-friendly programming a chance to succeed in prime time.

TOP 10 BEST
TOP 10 WORST
1. DOC
(ITV/first season)
1. BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER
(UPN/ranked #3 last season)
 
2. TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL
(CBS/ranked #1 last season)
2. OFF CENTRE
(WB/First season)
3. SABRINA, THE TEENAGE WITCH
(WB/ranked #4 last season)
 
3. WILL AND GRACE
(NBC/not ranked last season)
4. 7th HEAVEN
(WB/ranked #3 last season)
4. FRIENDS
(NBC/ranked #6 last season)
5. BABY BOB
(CBS/ First season)
5. WWE SMACKDOWN!
(UPN/ranked #2 last season)
6. SMALLVILLE
(WB/First season)
 
6. BIG BROTHER 2
(CBS/not ranked last season)
7. REBA
(WB/ First season)
7. C.S.I.
(CBS/first season)
8. THE PONDEROSA
(ITV/First season)
8. TEMPTATION ISLAND 2
(FOX/not ranked last season)
9. GEORGE LOPEZ
(ABC/first season)
9. THAT ‘70S SHOW
(FOX/ranked #5 last season)
10. BERNIE MAC
(FOX/First season)
10. BOSTON PUBLIC
(FOX/ranked #1 last season)

Descriptions of the Top 10 Best Shows

Descriptions of the Top 10 Worst Shows

Printable (pdf) version of the top 10 Best and Worst

The decision by the networks to renew shows such as Baby Bob, Smallville, Reba and Bernie Mac could represent a change in strategy on the part of network executives.  For example, networks such as WB have made family-friendly programming a priority, as it has four shows on our "Best" list.  In the past, networks executives have not given family series a chance to succeed by either pulling the plug on them before they have a chance to build an audience, or by placing them in unattractive time slots.

"Not only did many new shows make our Top Ten Best, the networks saw fit to renew much of this programming for the fall season," said L. Brent Bozell President of the PTC.  "It appears that the networks are finally starting to listen to the collective voice of parents who want to sit down with their children and enjoy high quality, family-friendly programming in prime-time."

But there was also some deplorable programming on television too. Shows such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which airs during the family hour, became more graphic in their depictions of violence and sex from last year. Off Centre, which airs in prime-time, has featured discussions of three-way sex and other gratuitous sexual content, including one character who assisted on the set of a gay porn video.  Other shows, such as Will and Grace and Friends, continue to deluge their young viewing audiences with adult themes including explicit sexual references or adult sexual situations.  These programs routinely make references to promiscuous lifestyles, masturbation and oral sex.

"The PTC's Best/Worst rankings clearly show that the networks have a long way to go before parents can be assured that their children will not be bombarded with filth during prime-time," said Bozell. "The networks irresponsibly market these adult oriented programs to younger audiences and they refuse to consider the consequences of what happens when children are continuously exposed to lewd and offensive programming."

 

 


Top 10 Best and Worst Shows for family viewing on prime time broadcast TV

The Parents Television Council - www.parentstv.org


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