Candice Bergen visited Today show to say her CBS single-newswomen sitcom Murphy Brown owed an enormous debt to Mary Tyler Moore’s eponymous CBS sitcom a decade earlier. In the series, Moore, who died Wednesday, played a single 30-year-old who moves to Minneapolis and applies for a secretarial job at a TV station but is instead offered the job as associate producer of its flagship newscast.
That sitcom, which ran seven years on the network, “made women feel entitled to a career,” Bergen claimed, saying girls “didn’t feel that up until then.”
“Mary Tyler Moore really opened the door for women…trying to have a career,” she said. “It also opened the door to quality television, because the writing was so original and had such depth.
Bergen did not see Mary Tyler Moore Show when it first aired on CBS.
“I was completely unfluent in sitcoms until Murphy Brown,” she said. While prepping for that role, “they said, ‘If you want to see the yardstick of a great sitcom, watch Mary Tyler Moore.”