“The Times audience is, I think, very knowledgeable about public television and has lots of memories,” Mr. Manly stated. “We tried to include shows from every era to capture the impact on different generations.”
Mr. Manly and different editors emailed a Google Doc to writers to gather concepts, which generated round 80 potential applications. Mr. Egner and Meeta Agrawal, The Times’s Arts & Leisure editor, helped to slender them down, after which Mr. Manly selected the ultimate 50 based mostly on author curiosity and the need to signify totally different eras and genres. (“There were no fisticuffs,” Mr. Egner stated.)
Mr. Manly stated many of the writers had private connections to the applications they wrote about. “When someone has had a formative experience with a show, that makes for really engaging writing,” he stated.
But Mr. Manly want to be clear: This just isn’t a case of one man figuring out the 50 finest exhibits on PBS. “It’s definitely not supposed to be a ranking,” he stated. He added that he sought out applications that have been well-known, of course, reminiscent of “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood,” Ken Burns’s documentaries and “Sesame Street.” But, he stated, “we also wanted to introduce some surprises in there.”
For occasion, Damon Lindelof, a creator of sequence together with “Watchmen” and “The Leftovers,” steered “Miss Marple,” whose heroine he grew to become infatuated with as an 11-year-old navigating his mother and father’ divorce. “I don’t know if that was on the original list, but he found it a powerful part of growing up,” Mr. Manly stated. “So we wanted to weave that in.”
Other well-known applications lurk close to the highest of the listing: The 1973 documentary sequence “An American Family,” “Monty Python’s Flying Circus,” Julia Child’s cooking present “The French Chef,” “Downton Abbey” and Mr. Burns’s 11-hour documentary sequence, “The Civil War,”
This is hardly the primary listing Mr. Manly has edited at The Times, and he stated he had realized that it’s higher to attempt to signify a big selection of applications than to attempt to be definitive. “I haven’t seen anyone yet who’s outraged that we left something out,” he stated, although he acknowledged he had heard some good-natured grumbling from an editor’s husband in regards to the omission of Thomas the Tank Engine.