End of ‘Big Bang’ stirs debate over future of TV comedies

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The end of “The Big Bang Theory” means the beginning of a familiar debate: is the traditional sitcom, complete with laugh track, a thing of the past?

The hit CBS comedy concludes its 12-year run on Thursday. When it debuted, the trend was toward comedies like “Arrested Development,” that taped without a studio audience.

One believer in the traditional format is Chuck Lorre, who created “The Big Bang Theory” with writer-producer Bill Prady. Lorre considers shooting in front of an audience a “wonderful” way to tell a story.

The approach also relies on multiple cameras, or “multi-cam” for short. In contrast, newcomers like “Atlanta” and “Veep” are made using fewer cameras and without a laugh track.

Lorre insists a good show will find an audience no matter how it’s made.

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