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October 26, 2014

Presenting the United States of Television

by Brad Trechak, posted Nov 16th 2010 5:35PM
The United States of Television Do you know where the 'Two and a Half Men' live? Or where Tim "The Tool Man' Taylor was making his 'Home Improvement'?

TV shows, particularly sitcoms, always seem to take place in a generic suburb (Just to save you a Google search, the settings of the aforementioned shows are Malibu, Calif. and Detroit, Mich.respectively). With the possible exception of programs that take place in New York or Los Angeles, most television shows seem to take place in "Anytown, USA."

Well, ponder the locales of your favorite TV shows no more. Last week, The Huffington Post published a map of the United States that linked every state to a movie. Now a blogger has created a similar map identifying every state with a TV show.

Obviously, some states have many TV shows set there. The creator of the map, Andrew Shears, indicated on his blog that he tried to choose the most well-known show for each state. Still, while 'Seinfeld' is a good choice for New York, one can't help but wonder if it was really the right choice.

The list of shows set in New York is too long for this article. Thankfully, Wikipedia has one. It could be easily argued that 'The Honeymooners,' 'All In The Family,' 'I Love Lucy,' 'The Cosby Show' and 'Friends' each had just as much cultural impact as 'Seinfeld.'

But with multiple choices, you could argue for any show over the other. While 'Roseanne' was one of the most popular sitcoms of its time, 'Married ... With Children' is also deserving of the Illinois spot.

Switching attention to California for a moment, it had '90210,' 'Arrested Development,' 'The Big Bang Theory,' 'Sanford & Son,' and 'The Monkees.' The state even hosts 'iCarly.' Is 'Baywatch' really the best representative of the Golden State? Since California is keen on celebrity governors, perhaps their next choice for the position should be David Hasselhoff.

Shears didn't always choose the most well-known or popular show, though. He chose 'Freaks and Geeks' over 'Home Improvement' for Michigan because he likes 'F&G' more.

So what do you think? For New York, California or any of the other states, is there a television show that is more worthy as representative of that state than the one currently in the diagram? Let us know in the comments.

Here is the map in question.

The United States of Television

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11 Comments

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wince33

The Headhunter for Idaho? Had to look that one up neve even heard of it but I guess there is no other option.

November 17 2010 at 10:42 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
JLGreenlee

"Family Ties" should be the one for Ohio (Columbus). Nevada should be "Las Vegas" or "Vega$" of course. "Laverne & Shirley" or "Happy Days" says Wisconsin faster to me than "That 70s Show." Texas should've had "Dallas."

November 17 2010 at 12:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
wayklaro123

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November 16 2010 at 9:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
wayklaro123

yes, i like csi too.

November 16 2010 at 9:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
backbackheyhey

Illinois gets "Rosanne"? Really? I read his post, and I get that he didn't want to use a Chicago show for some reason, but then why use a New York City show for NY, or a beach show for California?

Also, "The Middle" is a better show than any of the Indiana shows he considered.

November 16 2010 at 7:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Andrew Shears

Thanks for posting my map!

In the few days since this went semi-viral, I posted a remixed edition of the map that included feedback from the literally thousands of comments and hundreds of debates. You can see this map here:

http://andrewshears.wordpress.com/2010/11/15/the-popular-feedback-remix-50-states-50-tv-series/

November 16 2010 at 6:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
john r moshier

dead like me for seattle

November 16 2010 at 5:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
alk02g

I would put South Park in for Colorado. And Boy Meets World for Pennsylvania. And Burn Notice for Florida, but that's newer and I could see why something else could fit better. I would've put Beverly Hills, 90210 for California, but just like NY, so many things fit well. I was kinda surprised at Roseanne... since I thought of ER and Perfect Strangers first. Sister, Sister was also in Detroit, but nobody ever remembers that, LoL. I also think Gullah Gullah Island was in South Carolina, and would've put that there.

November 16 2010 at 5:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ben.ailes

I'd probably pick CSI: for Nevada

November 16 2010 at 5:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Katie

I do recall some unscientific poll of native NYers which said that Seinfeld portrayed the most authentic version/experience of living NYC, whereas Friends was much further down the list.

As for much of the rest of the country, I must admit that I've never heard of several of them. Who is on "The Virginian", or "Any Day Now"?

November 16 2010 at 5:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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