It has been said that television has had a greater influence on American culture than parents, schools, churches, and government. Television debuted in the United States in 1928 with the launch of WGY Television, a joint venture of WGY in Schenectady, New York and WMAK in Lockport, New York. Development was halted during World War II but quickly picked up when peace was restored. Soon more than half of American households had a set and the 1950s became known as the Golden Age of Television. Today, these are the states where people watch the most TV.
Even if television’s primacy has been challenged in the last two decades by the internet and social media, it has certainly made its mark on our language. 24/7 Tempo has compiled a list of classic TV quotes that are now part of everyday vocabulary.
Some of them are so ingrained that you may be quoting a TV show without realizing it. The truth is out there, whether you’re aware of it or not. By the way, that’s a quote from the “X-Files.” And if you didn’t recognize it, you might say, “D’oh!” That’s from “The Simpsons.” (Click here for the most binge-worthy series you can stream now.)
Our list includes such classic lines as “That’s what she said,” from “The Office” and “I am the danger,” from “Breaking Bad.” If you’re impressed by something or someone, you might say, “Smarter than your average bear.” If you’re not so impressed, you might say, “Yada, yada, yada.” And if you’ve heard enough already, you can say, “Just the facts, ma’am.”