A bittersweet farewell to Frank M. Reid at Bethel AME
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Forest Whitaker

'Roots' resounds as epic storytelling

'Roots' resounds as epic storytelling

When I first saw "Roots" before its debut on ABC in 1977, I thought it was compelling television.

As the blockbuster ratings started rolling in, I knew it was also culturally important TV, if for no other reason than the way its huge crossover audience blew away the conventional wisdom among network programmers that white viewers wouldn't watch shows with black stars.

But after seeing the eight-hour remake that debuts at 9 p.m. Monday on the History, A&E and Lifetime channels, I am now convinced that "Roots" is even more than all of that. It is one of the most powerful and profound narratives ever written or told about the American experience, including...

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