Posted on August 29, 2016
With the Fall 2016 Broadcast TV show lineup locked in place, TV executives' love affair with the reboot of the TV variety show format seems to be over. Unlike last year, the format is nowhere to be found on this year’s Fall lineup. True to its namesake, the modern version of the TV variety show includes various acts, different skits, musical performances, and sometimes even people playing mini games for prizes. Historically speaking, variety shows have always featured a noteworthy host to open and close the show, but all bets are off in the modern versions of this TV genre. The hosts' other responsibilities also included introducing the acts to the audience and to people at home. America’s classic The Ed Sullivan Show, often confused with a TV chat show (and one of the fathers of the TV variety show format), brought a whole new type of entertainment to early TV viewers. Today’s variety shows are not quite the same as Sullivan's original show. America’s most popular modern-day version of variety shows include NBC’s Saturday Night Live and America’s got Talent. These shows borrow heavily from the old format, but with a more modern spin, timely content, and delivered with an up-to-date moral compass (no old show would have ever poked fun at Cosby’s troubles).