“One doesn’t have to be a panjandrum of Communications to realize that television does something to us,” Michael Arlen (former TV critic of The New Yorker) writes in the Introduction to Living-Room War. He continues, “Television has a transforming effect on events. It has a transforming effect on the people who watch the transformed events-it’s just hard to know what that is.”
Living-Room War is Arlen’s valiant-and entertaining-attempt to figure out exactly what exactly television does to us. This timeless collection of essays provides a poetic look at 1960s television culture, ranging from the Vietnam war to Captain Kangaroo, from the 1968 Democratic convention to televised sports.