CBS Sends Mixed Signals

CBS Sends Mixed Signals, Critics Say
1996This article is part of CT's digital archives. Subscribers have access to all current and past issues, dating back to 1956.

While conservative activists are cheering new family-oriented shows in cbs's fall schedule, another new show on the network is drawing fire.

The American Family Association (AFA) is targeting Public Morals, a sitcom from producer Steven Bochco, for the show's language. The program's main characters are in a vice squad whose main duty is arresting prostitutes.

"The language is extreme, really vulgar, and inappropriate," says Rusty Benson, associate editor of the AFA Journal. CBS affiliates in Twin Falls, Idaho, and Meridian, Mississippi, have announced they will not carry the programs.

The AFA, which led a campaign against Bochco's NYPD Blue (ct, Oct. 25, 1993, p. 78) that initially pressured 57 abc stations into not running the show, will run a full-page ad in the New York Times asking advertisers not to buy time on the show. It is also sending out several mailings on the program.

At the same time, however, the AFA will encourage its members to commend CBS for its new shows Promised Land, a spinoff of the popular Touched by an Angel, and Cosby, the latest sitcom for comedian Bill Cosby. "We want to temper our criticism and praise what has been there," says Benson.

In Promised Land, a laid-off Gerald McRaney travels with his family in a motorhome, patriotically helping people solve their problems. Martha Williamson of Touched by an Angel is executive producer.

Another CBS show, Early Edition, has Kyle Chandler preventing disasters from happening by knowing newspaper headlines in advance.

Last Updated: October 4, 1996

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