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1950s / FATHER KNOWS BEST Opening
Father Knows Best was the classic wholesome family situation comedy. It was set in the typical Midwestern community of Springfield, where Jim Anderson was an agent for the General Insurance Company. Every evening he would come home from work, take off his sport jacket, put on his comfortable sweater, and deal with the everyday problems of a growing family. In contrast to most other family comedies of the period, in which one of the other parents was a blundering idiot, both Jim and his wife Margaret were portrayed as thoughtful, responsible adults. When a family crisis arose, Jim would calm the waters with a warm smile and some sensible advice. The show originally aired on radio in 1958. CBS debuted it in 1954, but it was cancelled after one year. NBC picked it up and put it in an earlier time slot, where the whole family could watch it. The show then ran successfully for the next five years and became a television classic.