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Babylon 5.1
by Rick Norwood

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Ratings are based on a four star system.
One star means that the commercials are more entertaining than the program.
Two stars watch if you have nothing better to do.
Three stars is good solid entertainment.
Four stars means you never dreamed television could be this good.

Top 22 Entertainers...

Deep in the summer doldrums, I thought I would indulge my passion for making lists. So without further ado, here are my top twenty-two entertainers alive at century's end.

It seems clear that the greatest artists of the last half of the 20th century have been the writer-directors, just as the greatest artists of the first half were the writer-artists -- Walt Kelly, Hal Foster, and Milton Caniff. So, the top three living entertainers are:
1. George Lucas
2. Stephen Spielberg
3. James Cameron

If movies are high art, television is the greatest popular art ever produced.
4. J. Michael Straczinsky
5. Chris Carter
6. Ronald D. Moore

There are no great living painters, poets, or novelists. Their job has been taken over by the singer/songwriter.
7. Bob Dylan
8. Bruce Springsteen
9. Pete Seeger

The closest thing left to underground art (until the great web page arises) is comics.
10. Gary Trudeau
11. Scott Adams
12. Dave Sim
13. Larry Gonick
14. Frank Miller
15. Don Rosa

And then there is one man who switches from comics to television to novels with seeming ease.
16. Neil Gaiman

In the theatre, the only person whose work I look forward to is:
17. Andrew Lloyd Weber

But I'm usually disappointed. Science fiction is alive and well in the hands of:
18. Ursula K. Le Guin
19. Gene Wolfe
20. Neal Stephenson

Most of the art alive in the 20th century is in a medium either invented in this century or developed into significantly new forms. The newest of these is the computer game.
21 Robyn Miller
22 Rand Miller

It says something about this great and terrible century that their names don't appear on the box.

Copyright © 2000 by Rick Norwood

Rick Norwood is a mathematician and writer whose small press publishing house, Manuscript Press, has published books by Hal Clement, R.A. Lafferty, and Hal Foster. He is also the editor of Comics Revue Monthly, which publishes such classic comic strips as Flash Gordon, Sky Masters, Modesty Blaise, Tarzan, Odd Bodkins, Casey Ruggles, The Phantom, Gasoline Alley, Krazy Kat, Alley Oop, Little Orphan Annie, Barnaby, Buz Sawyer, and Steve Canyon.

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