back to list

Episodes That Changed Television Storytelling

Groundbreaking television scenes which set a new horizon for storytelling


What's going on?

Television shows have constantly brought about new changes, each trying to introduce a new way of storytelling that would always leave viewers wanting more. These episodes demonstrate the shift in the American television series production and the various approaches that were used to captivate their audience.


American TV’s first interracial kiss arguably went to an episode of Star Trek with “Plato’s Stepchildren” in 1968. The kissing scene between William Shatner and Nichelle Nichols can be perceived as an act of overcoming the boundaries that society had constructed around racial issues. In 1984, Miami Vice brought a cinematical change in what seems to be an era of similarities with the episode “Brother’s Keeper.” The scene culminated in an uncanny, lonely nighttime ride set to Phil Collins’s “In the Air Tonight” that gave off a fresh vibe with much effort put into the music and mood.


The popular Game of Thrones series did something no TV series has ever done in 2011 by killing off Ned Stark, their poster guy and protagonist in the ninth episode of season one. That particular episode “Baelor” elevated the show to sensation status thanks to its shock value. In 2014, an episode of Netflix’s own Orange Is The New Black, “Looks Blue, Tastes Red” ditched Piper, the main cast and turned the story over to the supporting players. That was almost diverse in everything from ethnicity to sexuality to body type. There is no doubt that the TV industry will continue to evolve from what it is now. In time, viewers might witness more groundbreaking scenes they never expected from their favorite shows.


25 Episodes That Changed Television