It may be owing only to the fact that I’ve not watched tv with much regularity since high school, but I have the impression that the television mini-series had its’ heyday in the late 70’s/early 80’s. There may even be some evidence to support this notion because I actually recall reading at the time about how shows like ‘Roots’ garnered record ratings. Here’s a wiki (evidently partial) listing of some of the better known mini-series that ran on American television:
The networks used to run mini-series a couple of hours every evening (except weekends) for a period of about two weeks. Cable may have tweaked the concept of a mini-series a bit, but the essence of the thing is unchanged. Memorable ones I actually saw include: Roots, Shogun, Winds of War, Rich Man Poor Man, "V", and one years later called Arabian Nights. Seems like ‘Roots’ was something of a cultural phenomenon (could it have been the first tv mini-series?) Does anyone else recall watching it? I saw an episode not too long ago and was actually a little disappointed with a young Levar Burton’s (Geordi LaForge to you Trekkies) portrayal of young Kunte Kinte - not as good as I recalled thinking it was as a teen.
Any memorable mini-series you enjoyed watching?