While Must See TV was derived as an advertising slogan that was used by NBC to brand its Thursday night primetime programming during the 1990s, it was just that….an advertising slogan. Originally assigned to whatever sitcoms scheduled on Thursdays such as The Cosby Show, Seinfeld, Cheers, etc., dramas were traditionally promoted separately.
Fast forward to Sunday nights on PBS and the three-decade old “slogan” finally has teeth with new seasons of Miss Scarlet & The Duke and All Creatures Great & Small and a new entry based on a Nick Hornby book, Funny Woman, premiering this Sunday beginning at 8pET/7pCT.
Miss Scarlet and The Duke “Elysium” – S4, Ep1 (8pm ET/7pmCT)
Season 4 opens with Eliza having taken over the business of Nash & Sons (not that he has any sons) and things are not going entirely smoothly, although help comes from some familiar sources. Outside of work, her relationship with William (The Duke) builds towards a looming decision that will shape both their lives. Eliza then teams up with Duke to investigate a burglary in a high-end brothel whose clients include important members of the British government.
All Creatures Great and Small “Broodiness” – S4, Ep1 (9pm ET/8pmCT)
It’s the spring of 1940 and change is on the horizon for everyone in Skeldale House. James and Helen wonder when the right time might be to start a family, not knowing whether or not James will be called up to serve in the Royal Air Force (RAF). Tristan’s absence is felt by all, but no one more than Siegfried who attempts to hold the growing household, and himself, together as he braves this new world. When Mrs. Hall takes a leap of faith, Siegfried offers his support.
Funny Woman – S1, Ep1 (10pm ET/9pmCT)
It’s the height of the swinging 60s and Barbara Parker has just been crowned Miss Blackpool – but she’s certain there has to be more to life than being a beauty queen in a seaside town. With the bright lights of London calling, Barbara packs her bags and heads off to the city where she looks to take on the male-dominated world of comedy by storm.
From the best-selling novel Funny Girl by Nick Hornby, the London Barbara Parker encounters is not as quite as swinging as the one she’d read about and seen on TV. However, after a series of setbacks Barbara finds herself in unfamiliar territory – an audition for a TV comedy show.
Whether an advertising slogan from the 90s or just the simple truth from 2024, tune in Sunday to PBS for Must. See. TV.