It’s hard to imagine a time when streaming wasn’t readily available and the F-bomb wasn’t dropped on the daily. It feels weird even censoring “the F-bomb” considering it’s so commonplace in TV shows. But someone had to say it on TV first, and it wasn’t that long ago that network TV (and thus the FCC) had a stronghold on television consumption. Luckily, our TV shows nowadays aren’t all Leave It To Beaver (read on to see what taboo even the stereotypical wholesome show touched on) and are more reflective of the audience watching, including their language use. 

Pop culture is often representative of the larger culture so historic moments in TV history can reflect changing social views. From the shocking (at the time) implication that humans use the bathroom (gasp!) to showing the first gay kiss, we can see how social norms have shifted in the relatively short time span that television has existed. 

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First Drama

The Queen's Messenger 1928 CRACKED.COM The first televised drama was broadcast on September 11, 1928, from Schenectady, New York. It was a radio drama that was adapted for this new-fangled thing called television.

Source: PBS

The First (Kind Of) Toilet

Leave It to Beaver 1957 CRACKED.COM Although not quite the first show to feature a toilet (it was edited out for being too scandalous), it was the first show to show a toilet tank and certainly one of the first to even include a bathroom.

Source: Snopes

First Abortion Storyline

Another World 1964 CRACKED.COM The soap opera was the first TV show to address abortion. It would be another eight years until Maude's famous abortion storyline.

Source: MIC

First Trans Actor Who Played a Trans Character

Dirty Sexy Money 2007 CRACKED.COM The first TV show to feature a recurring trans actor playing a trans character was Candis Cayne's role in Dirty Sexy Money. Also noteable was Alexandra Billings, who played a trans character in the TV movie Romy and Michele: In the Beginning two years earlier.

Source: Out

First Same-Sex Kiss

L.A. Law 1991 CRACKED.COM The show featured a bisexual woman who kissed a colleague. It was the first same-sex kiss shown on U.S. television.

Source: Bustle

First U.S. Sitcom, First Time a Married Couple Shared a Bed, and First Time a Woman's Pregnancy Was Shown

Mary Kay and Johnny 1947-1950 CRACKED.COM The very first U.S. sitcom featured the first time a couple slept in the same bed and the first time a woman's pregnancy was shown on TV.

Source: Snopes

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