DVDS

TVTV: Video Revolutionaries

color & b/w. 82 min. Paul Goldsmith, dist. by First Run Features, www.firstrunfeatures.com. 2018. DVD UPC 720229917704. $24.95. Closed-captioned. TV
COPY ISBN
In 1968, Portapak, the first portable video recorder, was introduced to the market. Though it wasn't a hit, a few artists and social activists saw the possibilities. This documentary recalls the efforts of counterculture figures to establish TVTV, short for Top Value Television. By the 1960s, mainstream TV had become a cultural desert, largely irrelevant to young people. To fill this "empty canvas," TVTV set its sights on the 1972 Republican National Convention. While the networks covered Nixon's "coronation," activists focused on protesters outside the arena, notably paralyzed antiwar veteran Ron Kovic. Living in a communal collective, they moved on to covering gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson, fugitive radical Abbie Hoffman, and an early Super Bowl, featuring players and their wives rather than owners. Largely ignored by East Coast establishment journalists, TVTV moved west, where increasing coverage of entertainment issues split the organization; the group disbanded in 1979.
VERDICT Former members recall their hits and misses, proudly noting the roles of actor-comedian Bill Murray and future director Harold Ramis, plus their mixed legacy as reality TV pioneers.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.


RELATED 

Get connected. Join our global community of more than 200,000 librarians and educators.

Get access to 8000+ annual reviews of books, ebooks, and more

As low as $13.50/month