I came across a website recently dedicated to counting the longest running television shows. They had a few criteria for inclusion (U.S. productions only, fictional content) and as you would expect the names on the list spanned a few generations of viewers (from Gunsmoke to Two and a Half Men). But despite the attention we give to TV, relatively few shows have found a lasting audience. In the history of TV, among the thousands of attempts, only 134 shows have produced 160 or more episodes (which takes at least six years). Not even Gilligan's Island made the list.
It's hard to hold people's attention week after week for years on end. And even when the right mix of plot and character does come along, staying fresh and relevant can be a tall order.
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