Entertainment Weekly

Subscribe

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content

Article

Which old TV shows inspired your current faves?

Which old TV shows inspired your current faves? When it comes down to it, isn’t Grissom just a latter-day Quincy?

Posted on

Jennifer Garner, Stephanie Powers
Garner: Norman Jean Roy; Powers: Everett Collection

Who says the idiot box isn’t educational? Some of the best shows on right now display a sense of history by building on previous programs and adding new twists and timely ideas. As Rod Serling used to say, submitted for your approval: a few of television’s most pedigreed series and the oldies that could have been their ideological inspirations.

”ALIAS” and ”THE GIRL FROM U.N.C.L.E.” (1966-67)
Setup Similarities Beautiful espionage agent (Jennifer Garner; Stefanie Powers) saves the world from foreign threats.
21st-Century Update ”Alias” has superior spandex-miniskirt technology and brightly colored wigs. And where Powers deployed an occasional karate chop, Garner is a post-”Terminator” fighting machine.
Why It Works ”Girl” — a spin-off of ”The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” — had a ’60s camp thing going on; ”Alias” has an ’02 counterterrorism thing going on while avoiding the camp of ”Austin Powers.”