Howard Rosenberg

Television Critic


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his two-and-half hour Archive interview, Howard Rosenberg speaks about his early interests, including athletics and writing. He describes his work as a reporter for the Moline Dispatch of Kansas, where he learned how to report and deliver on deadline. He recounts his move in the early 1970s to The Louisville Times of Kentucky where he lobbied to be the television critic. Rosenberg speaks about his investigative pieces about the deceptive practices of local public television in its use of funds. He details the way celebrities were interviewed through junkets and his own attempts to do independent interviews. He talks in great detail about the pieces he wrote as television critic/columnist for The Los Angeles Times, beginning in 1978, and recalls his difficulties in his early years. Rosenberg comments on some of his '80's pieces including one on the 1984 Olympics, that led to his winning a Pulitzer Prize for Television Criticism in 1985. He discusses the flood of negative response he got about his column following 9/11 when he criticized President George W. Bush. Lastly he discusses several genres of television programming and how they've changed over the years. Karen Herman conducted the interview on December 16, 2008 in Los Angeles, CA.

"The Golden Age of Television is now (2008). I mean, show me any kind of dramatic series of the past that have been the equal of 'The Sopranos,' of 'The Wire,' of 'NYPD Blue,' of the original 'Law & Order,' of 'In Treatment'. I can think of nothing in the past that equals those. This is a remarkable time."

Highlights
Howard Rosenberg on winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1985 
07:57
Howard Rosenberg on his relationship with Cecil Smith, fellow LA Times television critic, and his editors
04:49
Howard Rosenberg on his coverage of the Emmy Awards for the LA Times
05:21
Howard Rosenberg on the function of critical writing
04:10
Howard Rosenberg on his book "No Time to Think"
03:09
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early life and influences; on the first time he saw television; on his early interest in writing; on learning to be a reporter
17:12
On being the first television critic for The Louisville Times; on television critics who influenced him and his preparation to go into the field; on the topics of his early television columns
13:22
On his early readership and television in the '70s; on the timetable of receiving shows and reviewing them; on how television changed and evolved during the '70s and his thoughts on the Golden Age of Television
13:03
On his influence as a critic in Louisville; on his relationship with Cecil Smith, fellow LA Times television critic, and his editors; on his schedule at the LA Times
15:26

Chapter 2

On how the process of reviewing shows changed over the years; on reviewing television series and changing his mind about shows; on reader response to his column about 9/11
12:19
On winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1985; on the function of critical writing; on his coverage of the Emmy Awards for the LA Times
19:56
On his dealings with people in the television industry; on his editors; on his then-current activities and writing about the television news media
11:58
On his book "No Time to Think"; on media consolidation; on television comedy
14:28

Chapter 3

On dramatic series; on late night television and daytime talk shows; on government involvement in television
18:50
On his favorite things he has written; on his favorite television shows and television at its worst; on the then-future of television; on his influence, advice to aspiring television critics, and how he'd like to be remembered
12:50
Topics

'The Idiot Box'

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Howard Rosenberg on television at its worst
02:48

9/11

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Howard Rosenberg on reader response to his column on 9/11
02:38

Advice

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Howard Rosenberg on advice to aspiring television critics
02:04

Creative Influences and Inspiration

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Howard Rosenberg on television critics who influenced him and his preparation to go into the field
01:51
Howard Rosenberg on television critics who influenced him and his preparation to go into the field
01:51

Criticism of TV

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Howard Rosenberg on being the first television critic for The Louisville Times
03:55
Howard Rosenberg on television critics who influenced him and his preparation to go into the field
01:51
Howard Rosenberg on his autonomy as a television critic
03:15
Howard Rosenberg on television in the '70s
03:47
Howard Rosenberg on the timetable of receiving shows and reviewing them
03:16
Howard Rosenberg on how television changed and evolved during the '70s and his thoughts on the Golden Age of Television
05:18
Howard Rosenberg on his influence as a critic in Louisville 
04:28
Howard Rosenberg on his schedule at the LA Times
01:57
Howard Rosenberg on how the process of reviewing shows changed over the years
Howard Rosenberg on reviewing television series and changing his mind about shows
04:09
Howard Rosenberg on reader response to his column on 9/11
02:38
Howard Rosenberg on sometimes not getting tapes of shows he wanted to review
02:27
Howard Rosenberg on winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1985 
07:57
Howard Rosenberg on the function of critical writing
04:10
Howard Rosenberg on his dealings with people in the television industry
02:31
Howard Rosenberg on his editors
02:48
Howard Rosenberg on television comedy
02:50
Howard Rosenberg on dramatic series
03:48
Howard Rosenberg on late night television
02:53
Howard Rosenberg on daytime talk shows
02:34
Howard Rosenberg on made-for-television movies, miniseries and specials
02:02
Howard Rosenberg on government involvement in television
04:55
Howard Rosenberg on his favorite television shows
01:42
Howard Rosenberg on television at its worst
02:48

Historic Events and Social Change

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Howard Rosenberg on reader response to his column on 9/11
02:38

Media Consolidation

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Howard Rosenberg on media consolidation
01:09

Pivotal Career Moments

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Howard Rosenberg on television critics who influenced him and his preparation to go into the field
01:51
Howard Rosenberg on television critics who influenced him and his preparation to go into the field
01:51

TV's Golden Age (1940s & '50s)

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Howard Rosenberg on how television changed and evolved during the '70s and his thoughts on the Golden Age of Television
05:18

Technological Innovation

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Howard Rosenberg on television technology
02:02

Television Industry

View Topic
Howard Rosenberg on being the first television critic for The Louisville Times
03:37
Howard Rosenberg on television critics who influenced him and his preparation to go into the field
01:51
Howard Rosenberg on his autonomy as a television critic
03:15
Howard Rosenberg on television in the '70s
03:47
Howard Rosenberg on the timetable of receiving shows and reviewing them
03:16
Howard Rosenberg on how television changed and evolved during the '70s and his thoughts on the Golden Age of Television
05:18
Howard Rosenberg on his influence as a critic in Louisville 
04:28
Howard Rosenberg on his schedule at the LA Times
01:57
Howard Rosenberg on how the process of reviewing shows changed over the years
05:33
Howard Rosenberg on reviewing television series and changing his mind about shows
04:09
Howard Rosenberg on reader response to his column on 9/11
02:38
Howard Rosenberg on sometimes not getting tapes of shows he wanted to review
02:27
Howard Rosenberg on winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1985 
07:57
Howard Rosenberg on the function of critical writing
04:10
Howard Rosenberg on his dealings with people in the television industry
02:31
Howard Rosenberg on his editors
02:48
Howard Rosenberg on media consolidation
01:09
Howard Rosenberg on television comedy
02:50
Howard Rosenberg on dramatic series
03:48
Howard Rosenberg on late night television
02:53
Howard Rosenberg on daytime talk shows
02:34
Howard Rosenberg on made-for-television movies, miniseries and specials
02:02
Howard Rosenberg on government involvement in television
04:55
Howard Rosenberg on his favorite television shows
01:42
Howard Rosenberg on television at its worst
02:48
Howard Rosenberg on advice to aspiring television critics
02:04
Professions

Journalists & News Producers

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Howard Rosenberg on advice to aspiring television critics
02:04

TV Critic

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Howard Rosenberg on advice to aspiring television critics
02:04
Genres

Comedy Series

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Howard Rosenberg on television comedy
02:50

Drama Series

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Howard Rosenberg on dramatic series
03:48

Late Night

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Howard Rosenberg on late night television
02:53

Sports

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Howard Rosenberg on television sports
03:34

TV Movies/Miniseries/Dramatic Specials

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Howard Rosenberg on made-for-television movies, miniseries and specials
02:02

Talk Shows

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Howard Rosenberg on daytime talk shows
02:34

All Interviews

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