Seven ways ‘ER’ changed TV in 15 years

Some shows change TV, and some change lives. Then, there are a few - very few - that actually accomplish both.

As "ER" comes to an end after 15 seasons (Thursday at 10 p.m., NBC/4), here are seven ways NBC's extraordinary medical drama made a difference.

"ER" is the last holdout of NBC's "must-see TV" Thursday lineup. By the mid-1980s, NBC's Thursday had become national appointment TV, with roughly a third of viewers who were watching at 10 p.m. tuning in to "Hill Street Blues," then "L.A. Law" and finally "ER," which bowed in 1994, the same season as "Friends."

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