74. MURPHY BROWN - TIE
Created by Diane English
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Aired: CBS, 1988-1998
Series creator Diane English left after four popular and award-winning seasons to create new shows, just as Murphy Brown’s decision to become a single mother was blasted as morally irresponsible by then-Vice President Dan Quayle. Quayle was just the sort of figure who was supposed to be threatened by a Murphy Brown. The show debuted as the Reagan ‘80s gave way to the Republican presidency of George H.W. Bush. “I was just trying to level the playing field,” English said in 2006. “So I felt pretty justified, and somehow in the body of that actress, Candice Bergen, we got away with it. I give Candice a lot of credit for that, because people completely embraced her.” Helped by Quayle’s confirmation of Murphy as a political lightning rod, 70 million viewers tuned in to the fifth season opener.
Watch Candice Bergen present Diane English with the WGA Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television
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