->''"My shows were not that controversial with the American people. They were controversial with the people who think for the American people."''

Norman Milton Lear (born July 27, 1922) is an Emmy and Peabody Award-winning and UsefulNotes/AcademyAward-nominated television writer, producer, screenwriter and occasional voice actor best known for creating, developing, and/or producing a number of [[SitCom sitcom]] megahits in TheSeventies, including ''Series/AllInTheFamily'', ''Series/TheJeffersons'', ''Series/{{Maude}}'', ''Series/GoodTimes'', ''Series/{{One Day at a Time|1975}}'', and (with Bud Yorkin) ''Series/SanfordAndSon'' among others.

Lear's sitcoms are fondly remembered as amongst the best of their era and as revolutionary [[TropeCodifier trope codifiers]] of the socially-conscious SitCom, as his shows often dealt frankly (even by today's standards) with social and political issues of the day, and broke all sorts of taboos of the day (everything from ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' having the first audible toilet to ''Series/{{Maude}}'' featuring the first sitcom character to get an abortion) without being overly preachy. Lear's various production companies continued pumping out sitcoms through TheEighties and into TheNineties (''Series/DiffrentStrokes'', ''Series/WhosTheBoss'' and ''Series/TheFactsOfLife'' among them) before hitting a bit of a lull, between having sold his assets to what eventually became Creator/SonyPicturesTelevision, and creating a string of shows that got ScrewedByTheNetwork after only a few episodes and generally aren't as highly regarded (or well remembered) as his early work. He found a surprise new success with the highly popular 2017 Netflix remake of ''Series/{{One Day at a Time|2017}}'', at age 93. In May 2018, Nickelodeon announced the greenlit of an animated project by Norman Lear currently entitled "Man of the House". The new series will center around a 11 year old boy Jose as he helps his mother, Maria, raise his younger siblings while also trying to start a hip hop group with his eccentric "neighbor" from downstairs, Wilbur.

Lear is also known for being a social and political activist for liberal causes (often of the 1st Amendment variety) having founded the progressive advocacy group People For the American Way and often contributing to Democrat campaigns. He's also credited by Creator/RobReiner (who had acted on Lear's ''All in the Family'') with having helped jump-start his directing career by fronting the money for ''Film/ThisIsSpinalTap'' (having owned Embassy Pictures at the time). As of late he's become close friends with Creator/TreyParkerAndMattStone of ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' fame, having voice acted in a couple episodes, being credited as a consultant on a few others, and even officiating Trey Parker's wedding.

!!List of Works
[[AC: Films Written]]
* ''Come Blow Your Horn'' (1963)
* ''Divorce American Style'' (1967) - UsefulNotes/AcademyAward nomination for Best Original Screenplay
* ''The Night They Raided Minsky's'' (1968)
* ''Film/ColdTurkey'' (1971) - also directed

[[AC: TV Shows Created or Produced]]
* ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' (1971-1979)
* ''Series/SanfordAndSon'' (1972-1977)
* ''Series/{{Maude}}'' (1972-1978)
* ''Series/GoodTimes'' (1974-1979)
* ''Series/TheJeffersons'' (1975-1985)
* ''Series/{{One Day at a Time|1975}}'' (1975-1984)
* ''Series/MaryHartmanMaryHartman'' (1976-1977)
* ''Series/FernwoodTonight'' (1977)
* ''All That Glitters'' (1977)
* ''a.k.a. Pablo'' (1984)
* ''Sunday Dinner'' (1991)
* ''The Powers That Be'' (1992)
* ''704 Hauser'' (1994)
* ''WesternAnimation/ChannelUmptee3'' (1997)
* ''Maggie Bloom'' (2000)
* ''Series/{{One Day at a Time|2017}}'' (2017-)
* ''Man of the House'' (TBA-)

!!This writer's work contains examples of:
* AfterShow[=/=]FromTheAshes: ''All in the Family'' had one in the form of ''Series/ArchieBunkersPlace'', and ''Sanford and Son'' had ''two'' in the form of ''Series/TheSanfordArms'' and ''Series/{{Sanford}}'', but Lear wasn't involved with either of them.
* CerebusSyndrome: Every now and then, individual episodes of Lear's show would get this. The ''Series/GoodTimes'' episode "The Big Move" probably had the cruelest case.
* CulturalTranslation: ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' and ''Sanford And Son'' were adaptations of the {{Brit Com}}s ''Series/TilDeathDoUsPart'' and ''Series/SteptoeAndSon'', respectively.
* DownerEnding: Quite a few memorable episodes of Lear's shows would start off pretty light, but drop one of these on the audience's lap.
* ExecutiveMeddling: Lear intended to end ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' after season 8 and gave the show a fitting SeriesFauxnale that resolved the main plotline but CBS decided to carry the show on for another season and four more seasons as the retooled ''Series/ArchieBunkersPlace'' without Lear.
* GrandFinale: ''Series/GoodTimes'', ''Series/{{One Day at a Time|1975}}'' and ''Series/{{Maude}}'' all received these.
* OnlySaneMan: Lamont of ''Sanford And Son''.
* PerpetualPoverty: ''Series/SanfordAndSon'' and ''Series/GoodTimes'' both ran on this trope. Any time it seemed like the characters were going to get out of their situation StatusQuoIsGod would kick in put them back in their place.
* PoorlyDisguisedPilot: ''Series/{{Maude}}'' and ''Series/TheJeffersons'' both got these on ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' in the second and fifth seasons respectively.
** The short lived ''Gloria'' received one on ''Series/ArchieBunkersPlace''.
* ReTool: Both ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' and ''Series/SanfordAndSon'' received these without Lear's involvement.
** Lear tried to initiate one of these to save ''Series/{{Maude}}'' by ending the sixth season with most of the supporting cast being PutOnABus, Maude winning a seat in Congress and moving to Washington DC with her husband. It was never tried out beyond the initial setup though since the network decided to end the show and Creator/BeaArthur decided to move on to other projects at about the same time. As such, the set up ends up working pretty well as an accidental GrandFinale for the series.
* ScrewedByTheNetwork: ''Series/TheJeffersons'' never received a proper series finale and was cancelled without warning (lead actor Sherman Hemsley didn't even know until he read it in the paper) despite being Lear's longest running sitcom. ''Series/{{Maude}}'' was also killed by a combination of this due to its plummeting ratings and Creator/BeaArthur deciding to move on from the role.
* SeriesFauxnale: "The Stivics Go West" for ''Series/AllInTheFamily''.
* SignatureStyle: Sitcoms that often touched on issues of the time with little sugarcoating, featuring [[UnsympatheticComedyProtagonist unsympathetic male protagonists]] with sympathetic long suffering wives (or a long suffering son in the case of ''Series/SanfordAndSon''), sets that more resembled those stage plays than sitcoms, the occasional VerySpecialEpisode and usually opening credits that featured an EarWorm ThematicThemeTune and cameras panning over whatever city or town the series took place in.
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVsCynicism: Almost all of them are right in the middle. The heartfelt moments, human decency and HiddenDepths of even the most UnsympatheticComedyProtagonist 's make the scale much more balanced.
** Series/AllInTheFamily, Series/GoodTimes, Series/OneDayAtATime (both original and reboot), and Series/TheJeffersons were all more idealistic.
** ''Series/SanfordAndSon'' is the most neutral series of his.
** ''Series/Maude'' on the other hand is clearly on the cynical end, despite the show still having some feel-good moments and heart.
* SpinOff: ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' was the launching pad for more than any other show in TV history, its spin-offs even had their spin-offs! The mothership spun off several successful shows including ''Series/{{Maude}}'', ''Series/TheJeffersons'' and a ReTool[=/=]AfterShow called ''Series/ArchieBunkersPlace'' (without Lear's involvement). Then ''Maude'' spun off ''Series/GoodTimes'', ''The Jeffersons'' spun off ''Checking In'' and ''Series/ArchieBunkersPlace'' spun off ''Gloria'' but ''Good Times'' was the only one of these to be successful or even last more than a few episodes.
** ''Series/SanfordAndSon'' had three ill fated and forgotten ones (''Grady'', ''The Sanford Arms'' and ''Series/{{Sanford}}'') but none of these had Lear's involvement and were the brain children of his producing partner Bud Yorkin.
* TropeCodifier: Lear's shows, especially ''Series/AllInTheFamily'', were this for socially conscious sitcoms.
** You can also thank him for pretty much creating the high quality African American sitcom with ''Series/SanfordAndSon'' and continuing to spearhead the movement with ''Series/GoodTimes'' and ''Series/TheJeffersons'' (which still holds the record after a quarter of a century as the longest running TV series with a primarily black cast).
* UnsympatheticComedyProtagonist: Archie Bunker of ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' and Fred Sanford of ''Series/SanfordAndSon'' are two of the most famous examples of this trope. George Jefferson of ''Series/TheJeffersons'' also qualifies much of the time, as does Maude Findlay of ''Series/{{Maude}}''. To Lear's credit, though, all of these characters had HiddenDepths and over time developed into fairly sympathetic characters.
* VerySpecialEpisode: All of Lear's shows had these from time to time but they often managed to avoid coming off as Anvilicious. The most famous ones are probably the ''Series/AllInTheFamily'' episode where Edith is nearly raped and the episode of ''Series/{{Maude}}'' where she gets an abortion.