Don Pardo: The Man with the Big Voice

As a staff announcer at NBC for 60 years, Don Pardo was a robust, velvety virtuoso of enunciation, whose baritone resonated like the aftertaste of a full-bodied fine wine. His trademark gig was performing the introductions at the beginning of each episode of Saturday Night Live, which he did for all but one season between the show’s debut in October 1975 and its most recent season finale in May.   Pardo, who died on Aug. 18 at age 96 in …

Ruby Dee, Actress and Civil Rights Activist, Dies at 91

Ruby Dee had impressive versatility as an actress in Broadway dramas, TV soap operas and movies that included Buck and the Preacher (1972) and Do the Right Thing (1989). Dee, who passed away on June 12 at age 92 in New Rochelle, N.Y., had an equally impressive career as a civil rights activist. She and her husband of nearly six decades, actor Ossie Davis, spoke out in the 1950s against McCarthyism; organized a campaign to press the government to restore the …

This Week in Boomer History: Medgar Evers … Pentagon Papers … ‘Hee Haw’

On June 9, 1969, the U.S. Senate confirms President Richard Nixon’s choice of Warren E. Burger to succeed Earl Warren as chief justice of the United States. Though generally conservative, Burger will vote in favor of school busing and abortion rights, and will write the court’s unanimous decision upholding a subpoena for the Watergate tapes. Buddhist monk Thich Quang Duc immolates himself on a Saigon street on June 11, 1963, in protest against the government of South Vietnamese President Ngo Dinh Diem. After losing President …

7 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Larry Wilmore

If you watch The Daily Show With Jon Stewart, you already know Larry Wilmore as its “Senior Black Correspondent.” But when Comedy Central picked him to host a new show of his own, The Minority Report With Larry Wilmore, which will replace the departing Stephen Colbert in the 11:30 p.m. slot in January 2015, the 52-year-old actor-writer-producer expressed surprise at getting the opportunity – not because of his race, but because of his age. “I’ve been in the business for a while,” Wilmore …

Will Aereo Revolutionize Broadcast TV, or Kill It?

On April 22, the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments in a lawsuit that some think will determine the future of television – or, at the very least, whether you can watch local TV news and broadcast channels over the Internet, without having to buy a cable TV subscription. The case involves Aereo, a two-year-old New York-based start-up that offers a new way to watch TV. Aereo captures signals from broadcast TV stations on banks of antennas located close to the …

Amazon Fire: Another Way to Watch TV

There’s a new box in town – for streaming content to your television. It’s called Amazon Fire TV, and it costs $99. For years, Amazon Prime members (those who pay the company for unlimited shipping) have had access to Amazon’s massive database of movies and TV shows from their “smart” TVs or Blu-ray players. Some programming is free, some can be rented or bought. Now it’s a little easier to connect with that content through the company’s new Fire TV …