Critic at large John Powers remembers TV mogul Aaron Spelling, who died last week at age 83. Spelling created such TV classics as Love Boat, Fantasy Island, Charlie's Angels, Dynasty and Melrose Place.
The HBO series Big Love, now in its second season, centers on a man and his three wives, who've broken from the mainstream Mormon church and still practice polygamy. Olsen and Scheffer co-created the series; this year, they won a Writer's Guild Award for their work.
In the ABC series, Pushing Daises, co-executive producers Barry Sonnenfeld and Bryan Fuller combine romance, fantasy and mystery to tell the story of a man who can bring the dead back to life. The first season of the show is now out on DVD.
Writer and producer Ed Burns draws on his experience as a former Baltimore detective to create the acclaimed HBO series The Wire, now in its fourth season. It's a crime drama with a central theme of surveillance technology used to capture drug dealers.
The director James Burrows is being honored this week with a career tribute at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen. Burrows made his name with classic TV sitcoms including The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Bob Newhart Show. After helping to create Cheers, Burrows directed episodes of many other hit sitcoms, including Night Court, Frasier, Friends and Will and Grace.