Video: A Timid, Truncated New Season

Recycled hillbillies, screwy cowboys and a stuffy homosexual

Imitation is the sincerest form of television.

—Fred Allen Because of a summer strike by writers, the new TV season will not gush with fresh programs, only trickle into December. A few weeks later, a "second season" will dribble in. Networks calls this arrangement a "living" schedule. "Undead" is more like it.

The commercial networks are as fearful of the future as striking writers and, last year, actors. They are also just as eager to ensure their share of profits from new technologies: ABC, NBC and...

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