10 TV Shows That Pushed the Limits of Censorship

The characters of Fallon (Pamela Sue Martin, right) and Steven Carrington (Al Corley, right) and Blake Carrington (John Forsythe) and Krystle Grant Jennings (Linda Evans) in the first season of "Dynasty," 1981. ABC Photo Archives/Contributor/Getty Images

To be rich and beautiful and living in Colorado. The characters on "Dynasty" had it all. This nighttime soap opera aired on ABC from 1981 to 1989. It ran into a sticky spot with censors, however, when show runners wanted one of the main characters, Steven Carrington, to be gay. Initially, that's how he was written. But then his male lover was killed, and Steven suddenly became straight. He married a woman, divorced her and then fell in love with another man. That romance also ended in the death of the lover. After that, Steven was portrayed as confused and waffled in his sexuality. However, during the 1991 reunion show, Steven appeared as a happy, successful character -- with a male partner.

ABC censors probably shouldn't have worried about Steven's orientation. During much of its run, "Dynasty" was up there in the ratings. In its sophomore season, the show ranked No. 5, and it reached third place the next year. By the end of the '84 to '85 season, the show was right at the top [source: Museum of Broadcast Communications -- Dynasty].