There have always been a plethora of TV shows set in NYC. From I Love Lucy to All in the Family to The Cosby Show to Seinfeld, from Barney Miller to Night Court to Law and Order, NYC has had many lives and identities on the small screen over the decades. Like the city itself, there have been many different versions of this multifaceted city.
But how realistic are many of these shows? Is the NYC on TV the NYC in reality?
If you watch shows like Law and Order, NYPD Blue or Mad About You, you get a realistic sense of the insanity of life in this town. If you watch shows like Sex and the City or Friends, on the other hand, you get a very unrealistic, fantasy version of it -- NYC as playground, NYC has an ideal, not a place.
Don't take my word for it, however. Or don't let me be the last word. Instead, read this article from The Atlantic that takes a look at the shows set in NYC and determines there "realistic-ness" on a 1 to 5 scale. Some I agree with, some I don't but it's an interesting list and you should give it a look.