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Eric83

A Different World (TV Series)

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Even thought it rated higher than the Cosby Show, i think a large portion of their audience was watching the Cosby Show and when it went so did those viewers.

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People always get that misconception that The Simpsons was challenging The Cosby Show heavily, but The Simpsons only beat the out The Cosby Show once during that season

I don't think that The Simpsons was a huge threat to the Cosby Show, but it did dent their ratings and probably helped hasten the show's demise, as it had been on autopilot for years, and this was the first time that was put in the spotlight.

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I loved this show, still do.

Dwayne/Whitley were one of the first TV couples I ever loved, and it was such a positive thing to see a strong black couple on TV.

The only season I didn't like was season 1. Thank god Lisa Bonet got pregnant and Debbie Allen took over. Anything in season 6>>>>season 1.

The Dwayne/Whitley/Kinu triangle was one of my favorites, as was the HIV episode with Whoopie Goldberg and Tisha Campbell.

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I don't think that The Simpsons was a huge threat to the Cosby Show, but it did dent their ratings and probably helped hasten the show's demise, as it had been on autopilot for years, and this was the first time that was put in the spotlight.

I don't know, the ratings decreases weren't that massive between this particular season and the season before it, when The Cosby Show was tied for #1 with Roseanne.

However, by next season, both The Cosby Show and A Different World were out of the top 10, though still in the top 20.

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I don't think it was about ratings losses so much as The Simpsons airing against what had been a big show and managing to eke out some success of its own, and being seen as fresh compared to the stale Cosby Show. Bill Cosby chose to the end show, didn't he? That may have played some part.

I wonder if the ratings went down because people knew it was the last season. A lot of people got tired of Murphy Brown, Mad About You, and Roseanne some years before they went off, but their ratings didn't crash until their last seasons, when people knew the show was ending.

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I hate it when I get in on a thread like this late. SO much to comment on, don't know where to start. :P

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I loved this show, still do.

Dwayne/Whitley were one of the first TV couples I ever loved, and it was such a positive thing to see a strong black couple on TV.

I think that's one of the things which still stands out when you watch the show now, they had a lot of strong black characters and a strong black couple. You don't see that on most shows. At the time it was a little more commonplace but already just about done by the time ADW was winding down. These days, good luck finding that anywhere on network TV.

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I don't think it was about ratings losses so much as The Simpsons airing against what had been a big show and managing to eke out some success of its own, and being seen as fresh compared to the stale Cosby Show. Bill Cosby chose to the end show, didn't he? That may have played some part.

I wonder if the ratings went down because people knew it was the last season. A lot of people got tired of Murphy Brown, Mad About You, and Roseanne some years before they went off, but their ratings didn't crash until their last seasons, when people knew the show was ending.

I don't know what exactly accounted for it, schedule change/I got into another show, but I know that Murphy went from weekly must-see TV to me barely seeing a full ep during the final season. I remember the ep where cancer-stricken Murphy had insomnia or something and was up all night with Lily Tomlin's character on the phone as Murphy frantically baked in the kitchen (???), but I did not care for Tomlin's character, I really enjoyed Miles Silverberg. I didn't really mind it actually, but I know that a LOT of people took issue with the final fantasy season of Roseanne. Yes, it got REALLY silly sometimes, but wow, what a downer of an ending. Geesh. Never watched MAY.

Edited by SFK

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It's pretty sad how the top 30 ratings were dominated by sitcoms 20 years ago, yet now, there aren't even many successful traditional situation comedies on television anymore. :(

Edited by Y&RWorldTurner

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I think Murphy Brown just ran too long, the characters lost most of their purpose, they did not have a reason to exist beyond four or five seasons. The only one I thought had the legs to last was Frank. I did like Miles but they seemed to run out of purpose for him and I didn't care for the relationship with Corky. The show just seemed to go on forever. I love Lily Tomlin but that character was very odd. The show became increasingly odd, and then stale, like Northern Exposure and Picket Fences. I have some memory of an episode where Miles talked about riding a dolphin with a gorgeous man...I think I would have preferred that to Corky/Miles...

I remember some people being annoyed because in Murphy's last season when she had a big party in honor of when she was 16, she had Fabian there and she dressed up in a poodle skirt. Some said that was a slap in the face to the old days of the show, when Murphy was so in love with Motown. It didn't bother me, because she was obviously too young to listen to Motown at 16, it wasn't really around then, but it did show how homogenized the show had become.

I hope you share some of your thoughts on ADW.

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I think that's one of the things which still stands out when you watch the show now, they had a lot of strong black characters and a strong black couple. You don't see that on most shows. At the time it was a little more commonplace but already just about done by the time ADW was winding down. These days, good luck finding that anywhere on network TV.

And people may kind of <_< when Debbie Allen says it, but I think she's right that ADW made going to college "in" for a lot of young black people who hadn't seen it in their future. She has data that kind of supports this. The show made the culture of predominantly black schools known on a national level and a lot of people were drawn to that, as well as the promise of becoming educated professionals with a step ahead.

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I think Roseanne (who appeared on an episode of A Different World btw) later said that whole last season and the finale was a metaphor for her real life. I can certainly see the parallels too, but it was definitely hard to watch, knowing the format the show used to exist in prior.

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One thing that I loved in particular about ADW and TCS was their use of New York theatre actors. For TCS, that was the audition pool as it taped in New York, but Debbie Allen had had a Broadway career of her own and she continued the TCS tradition by often recruiting talented NY theatre personalities like Anita Morris, Alisa Gyse, Jenifer Lewis, Roscoe Lee Brown, and the mother of ADW's executibe producer Susan Fales-Hill, the late great Josephine Premice. I caught an ep the other week where they did a talent show and Whitley performed a Josephine Baker number "J'ai Deux Amours" that Debbie is credited as choreographing in the credits. I couldn't help but see the additional connection as her sister Phylicia Rashad released a Joephine Baker disco album back in the '70s where she covered that song.

Whitley around the 6:00 mark (embedding disabled by request): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orTj3s-9tNk

Phyl:

<object width="480" height="385"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9EjW93ttrg&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param'>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9EjW93ttrg&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9EjW93ttrg&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="480" height="385"></embed></object>

Oh my God, my avatar is so next level with that blaring! :lol:

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