Color television was at one time a very unheard-of luxury. People often had to venture out of their home and to community centers to even view a color program. In modern times, however, color television has become the norm, not the exception, while black and white television is rarely heard of anymore.
The first color television was devised back in the 1940s, but was not economically viable at the time. At that point the technology was still too new and far too unreliable. Adding to the complications was the fact that the methods used to create color TV wouldn't transfer successfully over to a black and white monitor without fault.
The real revolution in television didn't come until the 1950s when CBS, one of the two main competitors vying for the chance to present color TV, managed the breakthrough that changed the industry. Those who were able to watch could only do so in public venues such as auditoriums, stores, and other such locations. At that time the technology was a bit too far ahead of the common television sets that were sold to the general public. So despite the many who were fortunate enough to see the first broadcast, many more were left in the dark, so to speak.
It wasn't until around 1965 when the color TV revolution was in full swing and more and more households featured a color television. Though the numbers soon climbed into the millions, the existing networks continued to push for more exposure. Ratings drove the need to develop and refine the rise of color television, as viewers who had for so long been watching black and white now demanded color.
There were many advantages and a few disadvantages to color television from its inception into American culture. One very large disadvantage was that in the early days of its development and refinement color programming was not compatible with most television sets. As the majority of television sets sold in the 1940s and '50s were black and white, they were not set up to receive the different programming that would enable them to show color.
Another disadvantage of color television exists as the opposite of its corresponding advantage. While a color picture is more realistic in appearance, it is also often far more graphic and quite disturbing in the case of many programs. While this is seen as a trifling matter by some, it is seen as a very serious problem by others. The general belief in terms of being a disadvantage is that those creating the programs have begun to rely more on shock value when using strong, noticeable colors, and less on the actual story lines.
One obvious advantage is the detail that can be divined within every program as a result of color. Viewers no longer have to watch their shows in varying shades of gray and black, but can experience a far more realistic experience by watching shows that are cast in the same gritty colors as the world around them.