While working at PECHANGA.net (two days a week), I watch old movies and TV shows. Among the shows I've been watching lately is Hawaii Five-0. For a '70s cop show, it was better than average, and it holds up well.
One notable aspect of Hawaii Five-0 is that a quarter or so of the characters are Asian. No one comments on this; it's pretty much taken for granted. But even today, it's still remarkable to see Asians playing mechanics, police officers, lawyers, doctors, and judges.
Has a network TV show ever featured this many Indians? I didn't watch Northern Exposure or Doctor Quinn, Medicine Woman, but I don't think so. Indians are still limited to singular roles in shows such as Wolf Lake and King of the Hill. They're never just there in the background.
The US population is about 1% Native. If the networks created shows in proportion to the population, there'd be one Native-themed show every three or four seasons. Why hasn't that happened? If several black shows, a few Latino shows, and one semi-Asian show can succeed, why not a Native one?
If the networks deem Indian country too "strange," they could do a hybrid like Hawaii Five-0. Set the show in two towns straddling a reservation border: one white and one Indian. The Indian town could be considered "the wrong side of the tracks," so there'd be ample opportunities for racial, class, and cultural conflicts.
If anyone wants to produce such a show, give me a call. Or as Steve McGarrett might say, "Book him, Danno!"