Season or Series

This might be a slightly random subject for a blog entry, but when did Americans start saying ‘Season’ instead of ‘Series’ to mean a sequence of episodes of a television program? In the UK we say series, but Americans seem to prefer season, eg ”Season Three of Deep Space Nine”. I was watching The Joy of Painting a few days ago though, and Bob Ross used the word season. It kind of caught my ears: JOP was made and first aired in the eighties and early nineties, so it made me wonder when they adopted the new term and why? And why have we continued to say Series in the UK after Americans switched to Season? Of course, Americans use series to mean an entire program, as in Deep Space Nine or any of the incarnations of Star Trek are separate series, but they stopped using it to refer to a sequence of episodes made at the same time. Just one of those odd little details I wonder about.

One thought on “Season or Series

  1. Similarly, I’ve been wondering for some time whatever happened to the distinction between serial and series. I’ve even found myself explaining the difference.
    And then the ultimate insult of binge watching, the attempt to convert a series into an super extra long film. The tension and expectation of waiting a whole week for the next episodes evaporates as the cliff-hanger moves straight into the next episode.

    Liked by 2 people

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