Many children grew up watching 'Bewitched' went into advertising. Originally shown between 1964 and 1972, 'Bewitched' became the first and only TV series to intertwine sorcery and advertising. Hoping to get another generation interested in the business, in August 1994, Nick at Nite aired "How to Get Ahead in Advertising". Six similarly themed episodes were shown consecutively from 8pm to 11pm, Eastern time. 

Rich Cronin of Nick at Nite told 'The New York Times', "Our thought was that so many of us at Nick at Nite love 'Bewitched' in large part because of the advertising part of it. At least 20 episodes have advertising as a key part of the plot. We picked out what we thought were the best six. In those days, Samantha had to accept her role of full-time housewife, even though we know she would have done a better job as an ad executive than Darrin or Larry."

Larry, Rich remarked, was "the first real TV boss you loved to hate (because) he sucks up to clients in a nauseating way and manages Darrin through a combination of threats and false promises. Working in television for the past 15 years (since 1979) and working with ad agencies, I can appreciate the two-faced character of Larry Tate." 

In the 1990s, Samantha became Amanda, the president of the fictitious D&D Advertising agency on the Fox series 'Melrose Place'. By 1996, 'The Los Angeles Times' reported, "Since 1982, the number of women entering the advertising business has increased by 45% while overall employment in the industry has grown by 34%." It was understood D&D stood for Dumb & Dumber, coincidentally also the name of the 1994 movie starring Jim Carrey.

Centered around the lives of eight people (from social worker Matt, to landlord Amanda, to doctor Michael, to fashion designer Jane, to photographer Jo, to advertising executives Billy and Alison to mechanic Jake), all were Generation X and all came from various social and economical backgrounds united together in one Los Angeles apartment building in the trendy Melrose Avenue area.

From the outset, co-producer Frank South stressed the advertising business in the 1990s as depicted on 'Melrose Place' showed "things happen in a tougher way (in the show) than in the real world."

Grant Show, then 30, spoke to 'Gannett News Service' in 1992, "The reason Aaron (Spelling) wanted to do this show was because he wanted to address some issues from more of an adult angle (than he could in 'Beverly Hills, 90210'). In your 20s, you get the first slap of reality because you don't have your parents to fall back on anymore. You're on your own.

"In the work place getting that first job or trying to start a career and many of the decisions you're making can have lifelong consequences. They have no identity, don't know where they came from or where they're going and they feel they've been given a whole bunch of promises (about the American dream) that haven't been fulfilled. We'll address all of that in 'Melrose Place'."

After Heather Locklear joined the cast midseason (February to May 1993), Fox network announced 'Melrose Place' experienced an increase of 91% in its audience share among viewers 18 to 49. Dan McDermott of Fox declared, "When we have a valuable product, like we feel we have with 'Melrose Place', we will figure out how to make it a hit by scheduling it correctly and marketing it appropriately."

Darren Star created 'Melrose Place' told 'The Los Angeles Times', "Heather Locklear certainly brought a lot of new interest to the show. When people started watching it they realized this isn't the same 'Melrose Place' as the beginning of the year (debut July 1992)."

Patrick Muldoon told 'Gannett News Service' at the start of the 1995-96 season, "The 'Melrose' characters are like the audience. They're mid-to-late-20s, trying to find their place. They're young adults, trying to make it. They're in bigger worlds than they're used to. That's like me at 25, in Hollywood."

Darren Star believed 'Melrose Place' suffered lackluster ratings in 1992 because the episodes were self-contained, "That was a mistake. When you do a show that purports to be real life, and everything ends up being wrapped up neatly each week. That's not real life. It wasn't sophisticated enough for the audience. (Characters from 'Beverly Hills, 90210') really had no business being there (on 'Melrose Place').

"'Melrose Place' has become much more of an adult show. Somewhere in the middle of last year (the 1992-93 season) the show really found itself, and by the end of the year (May 1993), really started to find its audience. It's become a kind of twentysomething nighttime soap and once it got into that groove, the characters really came alive. But it takes time to hook an audience into that. Nothing wonderful is created overnight.

"That certainly was the case with '90210'. That show took time to develop, but it wasn't in the limelight like the first six episodes of 'Melrose Place'. I recall having a lot more freedom with '90210' because we weren't being watched so closely. We were written off, in a sense. I know our stories on 'Melrose Place' and I have a very strong sense the show will be a hit this year (the 1993-94 season). If not, we're at least doing wonderfully entertaining stories. Creatively, everyone is finally happy with the show."

'Sports Illustrated' reported in January 2018, "There is no sugarcoating the news for the National Football League when it comes to viewership: The numbers are heading in the wrong direction - and quickly. The decline of NFL TV ratings was a major storyline throughout the entirety of the regular season." Forty years earlier in 1978, in a series of three articles about football and television, the 'Detroit Free Press' was asking, "Has the interest in televised football peaked?"

At the time, "every NFL team receives $5.8 million per year from the three major television networks. The television money is greater than that which is taken in for ticket sales at the games." Aaron Spelling once stated, "Anyone can sell a show but it only counts if you can keep it on the air … It's peaks and valleys. It's always like that. Every nighttime serial has peaks and valleys."

Marshall McLuhan contributed overexposure to the reason the public was becoming turned off by football on television in 1978, "It is saturating and it will backfire. Football is an elaborate dramatization of our way of life. It is competitive, quantative and bottom line. TV is an inner trip. It's a drug and a lot of people are giving it up."

Paddy Chayefsky added, "Football translates better on television than being at the games. But on Monday nights, I always turn to 'Lou Grant' at 10 o'clock, then I turn back. It is surreal, the whole idea of millions of people watching is absolutely startling. I've come to the point where I'd rather watch Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic if I could. I think people are bored to tears with football on television, but they don't know where to turn."

Sports writer Joe Lapointe reported, "Many people are beginning to feel that the supply of football on television has exceeded the public's demand for it, that there is now too much of a good thing." At the time Gene McCarthy of J. Walter Thompson advertising agency which handled the Ford commercials account maintained, "The audience delivered is still quite large in terms of the combination of age and affluence we're looking for. I don't know where the demand will cease but I don't think that's implied by this year's (the 1979-1980 season) ratings. Even if the numbers don't hold the audience we are looking for will still be very effectively purchased."

'Detroit Free Press' reported, "Just who was watching? The audience demographics show that television football attracts a large percentage of upscale, young viewers who purchase 'big ticket items'." Don Meredith of ABC described the average viewer, "I don't think it's near the old cliche of the fat guy watching the game with a can of beer, fantasizing about running the kickoff back 99 yards. I've run into too many people who watch it who are not fat guys with a can of beer … It's America's right wing theater. It's a type of entertainment like a play."

Chet Foret of ABC confessed, "Naturally, I'm under extreme pressure. I'm terribly hyper. You are under extreme pressure if you want to stay number one. People ask me why do I smoke; stop smoking; don't do this. I don't have to work as hard as I do. I do it because I love sports, because I've got to keep on going. It's the only way I can exist. I've done this for 20 years (since 1958): Go, go, go, go, go.

"If I had to take two weeks off and sit at home and try to relax I'd probably go nuts. We are under a lot of pressure. I'm an extremely demanding man. The minute we flew into Washington (back in September 1978) we passed a playing field. It was the first thing I mentioned to (Howard) Cosell in the limousine. I said, 'Look at that field. The kids are playing soccer.' They weren't throwing a football around or hitting a baseball. They were playing soccer. I always thought that pro football could never reach a point where it could be overexposed. Now, maybe I'm going to be wrong but I don't want to be negative about pro football. I want to wait to make a judgment."

Frank Gifford offered, "As far as I'm concerned, there's way too much football on television but I have little to do with it. Up until this point (in 1978), there's been no reaction other than a favorable reaction for more of it. I mean, you hear a lot of people complain about it and gripe about it and bitch about it. But each year more people watch it. On Sunday, some people see two games then they see a third game. If that's not too much, I don't know what is."

Howard Cosell conceded, "I think the warning signs are up for professional football, which has been in its golden age. First, there is too much professional football: the 16-game expanded schedule, too much of it on television. And the product assumes a sameness that I think hurts it in the long run. That's item one. It has other problems. A lot of women in this country (the US) are deeply upset about the merchandising of sex in the form of the cheerleaders…"

Critic Jack Craig observed, "It may be that the NFL faces an impossible problem with television. It provides incisive views of plays to viewers in slow-motion replays while the officials must make immediate calls after a single look, sometimes from disadvantageous positions."

Dennis Lewin of 'Monday Night Football' expressed, "I think that, ultimately, all sports are going to have to do something about the obvious missed calls. There's got to be some kind of a system put in eventually where some calls can be challenged. But is the angle right, is the angle wrong, is the angle deceiving? Which angle is right. Angles are everything in replays."

In 1978, episodes of 'Charlie's Angels' and 'Wonder Woman' tackled the subject of football. In 'Angels In the Backfield', written by Edward J. Lakso and directed by Georg Stanford Brown, the Angels took positions in a professional women's football team. Sabrina was a quarterback; Kelly was a fullback and Kris was a lineperson. In 'The Deadly Sting', written by Dick Nelson and directed by Alan Crosland, Wonder Woman and Bill Michaels investigated sports betting, game fixing and organized gambling.

In the episode, viewers learnt scientist Professor Brubaker had been betting against underdog college football teams and winning by means of computerised implants. The dart from Brubaker would absorb in the victim's body within 20 minutes after being stung. Before the dart dissolved, it would act as receiver to signal transmitted by the professor on his remote control.

The signal would temporarily control the brain which direct the movements of the athletes. Viewers were also told the professor could transmit to a higher brain center which controlled human emotions. In one scene, Bill Michaels said, "If this thing continues, it could seriously affect national morale. As you know, football is the closest thing to religion for a lot of people in this country. Somebody's cleaning up every time a favorite team get creamed."

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