WGBH Openvault

New Television; New Television, Episode 606; Dogs, The

Part of New Television Workshop.

The Dogs is set on a bright, summer day at a seemingly benign seashore inhabited by a nervous, beer-drinking protagonist and a dark, panting dog. This is a narrative that has no dialogue but is structured in movement - of the man, of the dog (who is both harmless and menacing by turns), as well as all the camera work moving to the right in a clockwise direction that captures images in vivid color, creating an unsettling spin. A psychological study of shifts in memory and the perception of reality, "The Dogs" is both humorous and haunting; a portrait of a man moving through a mythical landscape of fear, longing, and Ballantine ale cans. The work alternately shows the man seated in a living room interior, drinking glasses of beer and swallowing pills, and walking down an overrun path to the ocean. Along the way, he is startled or distracted by the sound of a barking dog. Eventually, he reaches the ocean. During the piece, "The Star Spangled Banner" is performed by Kate Smith. Approximate date: 1989

License Clip
New Television
New Television, Episode 606
Program Number



Dogs, The

Series Description

"New Television" began as a local pilot production of WNET (New York) in 1986. In 1987, WGBH signed on as co-producer, and the shows were aired in Boston and New York. In 1988 and 1989, KCET (Los Angeles) and WETA (D.C.) became producers in association. In 1991, PBS picked up "New Television," and it was broadcast nationally. The following year, the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio, replaced WNET, WETA, and KCET as co-producer with WGBH. In 1993, WGBH ceased to be a co-producer for the series, and the "home base" moved to Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) in Hartford, CT.

"New Television" commissioned, produced, and acquired programming. In its early years, "New Television" broadcast works commissioned by The Contemporary Art Television (CAT) Fund. Increasingly, experimental films as well as video works were broadcast as a part of this series. Many of the later episodes of "New Television" contain works that play with and deconstruct the documentary genre. Series release date: 1986

Program Description

Includes Ida Applebroog’s and Beth B.’s “Belladonna” and Burt Barr’s “The Dogs.”

Asset Type


Media Type


Barr, Burt
Mueller, Stephen
Film and Television
Publication Information
WGBH Educational Foundation
Chicago: “New Television; New Television, Episode 606; Dogs, The,” WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed February 18, 2020, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_9C6135DFBF3D4AB39D12295589B1885A.
MLA: “New Television; New Television, Episode 606; Dogs, The.” WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. February 18, 2020. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_9C6135DFBF3D4AB39D12295589B1885A>.
APA: New Television; New Television, Episode 606; Dogs, The. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_9C6135DFBF3D4AB39D12295589B1885A
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