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10 Shows That Changed TV Forever

5

I Love Lucy

Lucille Ball on the set of "I Love Lucy"
Lucille Ball on the set of "I Love Lucy," her iconic sitcom. This episode, "The Diet," aired in 1951.

Let's put aside for a second the show's obvious small step for Lucy that was a huge leap for women's lib to point out that "I Love Lucy" was one of the first true sitcoms. Period. Sure, there were a bunch of classic '50s sitcoms -- like "Leave it to Beaver," "The Honeymooners" and "Father Knows Best" -- but Lucy was THE sitcom, and as such defined the model for all that followed. Would there have been "Seinfeld" without Lucy? We think not.

OK, back to women's lib: Do you think Mary Tyler Moore, Carol Burnett, Laverne and Shirley, and the recent, meteoric rise of Amy Poehler and Tina Fey would've been possible without Lucille Ball, who proved with grace and finality that a woman could anchor a comedy show (with some help from Desi)?

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If you've never seen Lucy -- even in good old black-and-white reruns -- you're missing out.

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