Bob Newhart was four years removed from his first CBS sitcom when he stepped into this one, which finds him playing a how-to book writer who decides to have a go at running a rustic Vermont inn. He and his wife, Joanna (played by the gorgeous and talent Mary Frann), deal with the normal run of tourists and locals as they get adjusted to their new life. That includes Tom Poston, a good friend of Newhart's who played the inn's caretaker, George Utley; Steven Kampmann, who wrote for another CBS sitcom, "WKRP in Cincinnati", as the pathological owner of the Minuteman Cafe, Kirk Devane; and Jennifer Holmes, who played student and skier Leslie Vanderkellen. Along the way, a number of other stars make appearances, including Howard Dodson (Jack Sprague from "Andy Griffith"), Rue McClanahan (Blanche Devereaux from "The Golden Girls"), Daniel J. Travanti (Captain Frank Furillo from "Hill Street Blues") and Julia Duffy (who appears in one episode at Leslie's cousin, Stephanie, and plays the character much differently than how she defined the role in later seasons).
The first season of "Newhart" was shot on live-look videotape, like many other sitcoms of the era (including "The Cosby Show" and "Kate & Allie"). Later seasons were shot on film and on videotape processed to look like film. But that's part of the charm of the show, as is the fact that you can actually see the actors shaping and molding their characters in each episode. They're not yet "set" into a predictable pattern. They're growing as you watch. The acting is very good, but I'm inclined to agree with other posters that it does get better as the seasons progress - especially as Stephanie and the brothers Larry, Darryl and Darryl (William Sanderson, Tony Papenfuss and John Volstad) - become integral characters.
Regardless of whether 20th Century-Fox, the company that owns the MTM library, releases additional seasons, if you're a fan of the show or a fan of Bob Newhart, you really owe it to yourself to pick up the first season of "Newhart".