Friday, November 15, 2019


CBS in their all-knowing and wise beneficence (I know how to kiss network ass with the best of them) has been airing the first season of ‘The Good Fight’ over “regular CBS” this summer.    It’s a great marketing “strategery” to get more viewers to sign up for CBS All-Access. (However, while I do love this series as I did ‘The Good Wife’, I’m adhering to my pledge of three premium platforms and no more.  But that trailer for ‘Star Trek: Picard’ is awfully damned tempting.)


In a recent episode about drafting new terms of service for a major client who is basically the Toobworld version of Google, the following dialogue came up:

They're working to get around your racist N-word ban.
Whenever they mean N-word they instead type ‘Neil Gross’.
I can print up the posts, but there are a lot.
All racist jokes with Neil Gross as the punchline….

That's not gonna go over well.

Later, Diane meets with the client, one Neil Gross…..

They're using my name? 
I-I don't understand.  How? 
As a replacement for the N-word.
What, seriously? 
- Yes.
- Why? 
- They know you can't censor it.
- Oh, my God.

That idea of substituting a person’s name for what could be an obscene word was very familiar to me.  And while I didn’t read it at the time, I remember the reviews for “Myron”, Gore Vidal’s prequel to “Myra Breckinridge”.

From Wikipedia:
“Myron” is a novel by American author Gore Vidal, published in 1974. It was written as a sequel to his 1968 bestseller “Myra Breckinridge”. The novel was published shortly after an anti-pornography ruling by the Supreme Court; Vidal responded by replacing the profanity in his novel with the names of the Justices involved (e.g., "He thrust his enormous Rehnquist deep within her Whizzer White", etc.)

In his introduction to the novel, Vidal mentions the Supreme Court decision Miller v. California, which in his words "leaves to each community the right to decide what is pornography." Saying that the decision has "alarmed and confused peddlers of smut" by eliminating guidelines, Vidal says he has decided to substitute the names of the five Justices who voted for the decision, plus the names of anti-pornography crusaders Charles Keating of Citizens for Decent Literature and Father Morton A. Hill, S.J. of Morality in Media (whom Vidal had debated on ‘The David Susskind Show’ in 1968), for the "dirty words". He has done this to conform to the Supreme Court's imposition of the "community standards" test, as he wants "to conform with the letter and spirit of the Court's decision."

These are the words and their substitutions:

blackmun: ass
burger: fuck
father hills: tits
keating: shit
powells: balls
rehnquist: cock
whizzer white: cunt

Later editions of the novel do not use these substitutions.

The young gay, racist, neo-Nazi in this episode who was spearheading this online attack against the search engine ChumHum was no dummy.  He was intelligent and more than likely had come up with this campaign inspired by the same source I was thinking of – he knew about Vidal’s literary technique of name substitution to get around a problem.  He may have even read the televersion of the book “Myron”.

And of course there would be a televersion of “Myron”.  It was written by Gore Vidal, after all, and there is a televersion of the author in the main Toobworld as well as in the Tooniverse.

In Toobworld, Vidal’s fictional televersion is best known for his visit to a little town called Fernwood, Ohio in 1976….

‘Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman’

- Episode #2.08 (1976) ... (credit only)
- Episode #2.10 (1976) ... (uncredited)
- Episode #2.18 (1976) ... (uncredited)
- Episode #2.20 (1976) ... (uncredited)
- Episode #2.21 (1976) ... (credited)
- Episode #2.22 (1976) ... (uncredited)
- Episode #2.23 (1976) ... (credit only)
- Episode #2.25 (1976) ... (uncredited)

As for the Tooniverse:

‘The Simpsons’
- “Moe'N'a Lisa” (2006)

‘Family Guy’
- “Mother Tucker”

These three appearances make Gore Vidal eligible for the TV Crossover Hall of Fame as a multi-dimensional, even without a definitive link to ‘The Good Fight’. 

And as November is the month in which newsmakers like the late Gore Vidal are inducted, we’ve chosen the author to join the ranks.

Welcome to the Hall, Mr. Vidal…..

When I began the research on this post and learned that only the first edition of the novel had the substitute words, I decided to get a copy for myself, if only for the crass reasoning that it would be worth money - more money than I paid for it anyway.

I got a nice copy of the first edition - and signed by the late Gore Vidal to boot! - for a very reasonable price.  Ha!  And now by publishing this post in November (just over four months from now), I must be trying to increase its value by posting about it here.

I'm probably screwed.....  LOL


Friday, November 8, 2019


With this being November, when the Television Crossover Hall of Fame celebrates the newsmakers.  Often that means politicians and that's who we've got today:


From Wikipedia:
Barbara Levy Boxer (born November 11, 1940) is a retired American politician who served as a United States senator for California from 1993 to 2017. A member of the Democratic Party, she previously served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1983 to 1993.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, Boxer graduated from George Wingate High School and Brooklyn College. She worked as a stockbroker for several years before moving to California with her husband. During the 1970s, she worked as a journalist for the Pacific Sun and as an aide to U.S. Representative John L. Burton. She served on the Marin County Board of Supervisors for six years and became the board's first female president. With the slogan "Barbara Boxer Gives a Damn", she was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1982, representing California District 6. She served on the House Armed Services Committee, and was involved in government oversight, passing several procurement reforms.

Boxer won the 1992 election for the U.S. Senate.

Running for a third term in 2004, she received 6.96 million votes and set a record for the most votes in any U.S. Senate election in history, until her colleague, Dianne Feinstein, the senior senator from California, surpassed that number in her 2012 re-election.  Boxer and Feinstein were the first female pair of U.S. Senators representing any state at the same time.  

Boxer was the ranking member of the Environment and Public Works Committee and the vice chair of the Select Committee on Ethics. She was also the Democratic Chief Deputy Whip. Although generally identified with the San Francisco Bay Area, where her political career began, Boxer now lives in the Coachella Valley.

At the time of her retirement, Boxer ranked eleventh in seniority in the United States Senate, and was the most senior junior Senator from the retirement of Tom Harkin in January 2015 until her own retirement two years later. She was also dean of the California Congressional Delegation, since she had spent 10 years as a US Representative for California's 6th district before being elected to the Senate in 1993.

On January 8, 2015, Boxer announced that she would not seek re-election in 2016.  She was succeeded by former California Attorney General Kamala Harris.

For more, click here
As a member of the League of Themselves, Boxer’s televersion is well-established in Earth Prime-Time without the need for portrayals by actresses, if there ever was one.

From Wikipedia:
Boxer has made cameo appearances as herself in several television shows, including ‘Murphy Brown’ (1994), ‘Gilmore Girls’ (2002) and ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ (2007), as well as a cameo (as herself) in the 2000 film “Traffic”. 

(O'Bservation: That movie is not part of the Earth Prime-Time Universe and does not count toward her tally.)

In September 2012, it was reported that Boxer and soon-to-be-retired Republican Senator Olympia Snowe would appear together in an NBC sitcom.  On September 20, 2012, she and Senator Snowe appeared in the fifth season premiere of ‘Parks and Recreation’. Boxer later returned to ‘Parks and Recreation’ alongside several other U.S. senators in early 2015 in the seventh season episode "Ms. Ludgate-Dwyer Goes to Washington."

Here is the tally for Senator Boxer’s credits that will get her into the TVXOHOF:

Murphy Brown
- Brown vs. the Board of Education

(1994) .

From the IMDb:
Murphy tries to get Avery a spot in an elite school and invites the school's board to a party to secure it. When ‘FYI’ kills a story about one of its members, Murphy is concerned her ethics will be questioned.

Gilmore Girls
- Those Lazy-Hazy-Crazy Days


From the IMDb:
Rory returns from Washington just in time for the First Annual Stars Hollow End of Summer Madness Festival where she realizes her feelings for Jess might be a lot stronger than she thought, but is it too late to do anything about it? Lorelai is having strong feelings of her own.  

K Street
- Week 3


In episode three of 'K Street', Amnesty International and others question the firm's decision to represent a Saudi Arabian agency, Maggie is threatened with a restraining order and Tommy keeps seeing that mysterious woman in red. Amnesty International protests the firm's decision to represent a Saudi Arabian government organization.  

Curb Your Enthusiasm
- The Anonymous Donor


From the IMDb:
Larry decides to be nice for a change and actually donate money to a worthy cause. But when he's revealed to be the anonymous donor for the hospital wing, Larry goes ballistic. He then accuses a dry cleaner of giving his jersey to someone else, and goes off in search of it. Meanwhile, Larry, Jeff, and the Blacks get their reputation stained.

Larry and Cheryl move into their new home and welcome an additional house guest - Loretta Black's brother Leon - who Larry immediately accuses of an unspeakable act. In other news, Larry gripes over the questionable anonymity of a donation, and considers rewriting the laws of dry-cleaning.

Parks and Recreation
- Ms. Knope Goes to Washington


From the IMDb:
Leslie and Andy go to Washington on business--and to see Ben and April. Back in Pawnee, Ron is in charge of the employee barbecue, and Tom and Ann pretend to still be together.

Parks and Recreation
- Ms. Ludgate-Dwyer Goes to Washington


From the IMDb:
During a business trip to Washington, April tells Leslie that she wants to quit her job. Back in Pawnee, Andy, Ben and Ron may have found her the perfect new job.  

- Contagion


From the IMDb:
When IMSF realizes one of their own has died as a result of the mysterious illness, they race to find its cause before more lives are taken.  

On the Toobworld Timeline, this episode takes place in 2033.  Senator Boxer is seen in archival footage.  We have yet to view if the Senator will still be alive at that time in the Real World (and if the episode will be deemed void by History, thrusting the show into an Alternate Toobworld.)

Welcome to the Hall, Senator!

Friday, November 1, 2019


It’s our tradition for the Television Crossover Hall of Fame that November’s theme should be the Newsmakers, since it’s also the month in which elections usually take place in America.

“Newsmakers” is a wide category including politicians of course, but also the newscasters, newspapers, and as multidimensionals usually, also the televersions of the Presidents and sometimes other word leaders.  (Many times that comes down to the actual people, being members of the League of Themselves.)

Since we’re celebrating the 20th anniversary of the TVXOHOF, our theme for the monthly showcase for the entire year has been superheroes and sometimes their arch-foes.

As such, there was only one superhero who came to mind who also fit the bill for a politician….


From Wikipedia:
Oliver Queen, also known by his alter-ego Green Arrow, is a fictional character in The CW's Arrowverse franchise, first introduced in the 2012 pilot episode of the television series ‘Arrow’. The character is based on the DC Comics character of the same name, created by Mort Weisinger and George Papp and was adapted for television in 2012 by Greg Berlanti, Marc Guggenheim and Andrew Kreisberg. Oliver Queen has been continually portrayed by Stephen Amell, with Jacob Hoppenbrouwer portraying a young Oliver.

In the series, Oliver, a billionaire playboy, who claimed to have spent five years shipwrecked on Lian Yu, a mysterious island in the North China Sea, returns home to Starling City (later renamed "Star City") to fight crime and corruption as a secret vigilante whose weapon of choice is a bow and arrow. During the first season, Oliver focuses on a list, written by his father, of targets that are taking advantage of the citizens.

Subsequent seasons have him venturing into all criminal activity, and he shifts from being willing to kill to having a rule against all killing as a means of stopping assailants. In ‘Arrow’, Oliver is known during the first season as "The Hood", but drops that persona once he vows to stop killing and starts using a new name "Arrow". He does not take up the "Green Arrow" name until season four, when Roy Harper publicly confessed to being the "Arrow" to protect Oliver.

He is a friend and frequent ally of the Central City-based superhero The Flash, White Canary, the leader of the superhero team the Legends, and the Kryptonian superheroine Supergirl from the parallel universe of Earth-38.

Amell has appeared as Oliver Queen and his vigilante persona in crossovers on the television series ‘The Flash’, ‘Legends of Tomorrow’, ‘Supergirl’, and the animated web series ‘Vixen’, all set within the Arrowverse.  

O'Bservation - For Toobworld, 'Vixen' takes place in the Tooniverse.

He has also worked with John Constantine who showed up in the CW after his own series, ‘Constantine’, was cancelled on NBC.  (Constantine was last month’s entry in the Hall.)  And 'Batwoman' was launched in the last crossover between 'Arrow', 'The Flash' and 'Supergirl' in which she got to meet Green Arrow.

Once the Crisis Crossover comes along, we can add ‘Black Lightning’ to the mix as well as so many other DC superhero shows from the past.

This is the last season for ‘Arrow’ and it looks as though Oliver Queen may perish in the Crisis of Infinite Earths.  But that’s too much of a downer.  I think the powers that be behind this show will find a way to work out a proper ending which will be more amenable to its legions of fans.

Welcome to the Hall, Mr. Queen, Mr. Green Arrow….

Monday, October 28, 2019


This year, I’m trying my best not to even sample the new shows; my interests have been changing after 20 plus years focused on Toobworld.  I’d say only a few have ensnared me – ‘Stumptown’, ‘’Perfect Harmony’, ‘Bob Hearts Abishola’ and ‘Evil’.

I’m not a big fan of horror anymore, but the people in charge of ‘Evil’ are responsible for ‘The Good Wife’ and its sequel ‘The Good Fight’, so I knew they had a good record. (Okay, they stumbled with that alien zombie politician show.)

As the series is focused on demonic possession, looking at both sides of the concept, comparisons to ‘The Exorcist’ were sure to pop up.  And with the fifth episode, “October 31”, the series finally dealt with an actual exorcism.  So they tackled the issue head-on with a nice little in-joke:

The top picture is of course the iconic image from the movie showing Father Merrick arriving at the Georgetown residence in which the exorcism was taking place.

The second picture shows Kristen’s mentor, a psychiatrist played by Kurt Fuller, arrives to give his opinion on what the Church is doing in their ritual.  Except for the power of imagery, they didn’t clobber us over the head with the in-joke.


Friday, October 25, 2019


Sorry I’m late with this.  I was in the hospital all week.  Home now; all’s good.

But enough about me.  Let’s get inductin’!

As our last October/Halloween Friday Hall of Famer, there has been recasting involved.  And Team Toobworld knows how I feel about recastaways.  But I’ve got some splainin to do!

And that’s going to help when it comes to inducting our latest member….


From Wikipedia:
Marilyn Munster is a fictional character in the CBS sitcom ‘The Munsters’, originally played by Beverley Owen and later by Pat Priest. In the original series she is the daughter of Lily Munster's sister, with Herman alluding to her "plain" looks coming from Lily's side of the family.

Played first by Beverley Owen and then by Pat Priest, Marilyn lives with the Munsters throughout the series run. It is never made clear why Marilyn lives with the Munsters, rather than with her parents, who are said to still be in Transylvania. Although she is Lily's niece, she is always referred to as "Marilyn Munster" (while the character was being developed, her name was Marilyn Mundane).

Marilyn is a fetching young woman and the only family member who is not ghoulish in appearance; by the Munsters' aesthetic standards, she is distressingly unattractive.

The family views Marilyn's appearance as an affliction, but still treat her with kindness and love. Marilyn herself is all too aware of her "homeliness" and bemoans that she keeps scaring off potential boyfriends, having no clue that the young men are in fact frightened away by her monstrous family.

She attends Westbury College in Mockingbird Heights. She is devoted to her family, and the surest way for a suitor to alienate Marilyn (rather than vice versa) is to disparage them. She considers her Uncle Herman and Grandpa the "two [finest] men [who ever] walked this earth."

Despite being a “normal” beauty by society standards, the Munsters' strange subculture of vampires, werewolves, zombies, sorcerers, mad scientists, et al., have made her a ghoul at-heart (she regularly assists Lily in cooking rodents, & festooning the house with cobwebs).

Like the rest of her family, she believes that the Munster lifestyle is normal, and dissenters are out-of-step. In one episode, Herman was temporarily transformed into a normal, clean-cut man. The family, including Marilyn, was appalled and physically repelled by the tragic event.

Despite standing out amongst the cast more than any other character, Marilyn was the least developed character in the series. She usually served as an ear for Lily's expeditions, or a subject for Grandpa's foiled potions.

Here are the four actresses who played Marilyn:

Beverly Owen
('The Munsters'
Season 1, 15 episodes)

Pat Priest
('The  Munsters'
57 episodes)

Debbie Watson

("Munsters, Go Home!")

Jo McDonnell

("The Munsters' Revenge")

As far as the audience in the Trueniverse was concerned (Sorry, I’m speaking for you all.), it wasn’t just that Marilyn was beautiful (or as the Munsters believed, homely), but that she wasn’t a monster like the rest of them.

I disagree.

The family has at least one vampire, a werewolf, a gill-man, at least two reanimated corpses, and perhaps a succubus (if Lily isn’t a vampiress herself.)

One “monster” not in that family dynamic?

A shape-shifter.

If they had not done a recastaway during that first season in order to give Beverly Owen the chance to go back to her boyfriend in New York, then I might have just relegated the two movies into two different dimensions – the first to the Cineverse, the other to a TV Movie dimension.  Who knows?  Perhaps even to the one which has all those alternate TV Movie Presidents.

But since precedent was set by the TV show itself, my decree is that the two movies should instead be absorbed into Earth Prime-Time as part of ‘The Munsters’ as a whole.

We don’t know what Marilyn was studying in college, but I’m going to claim that she was studying to become a nurse.  The reason for this will become clear in this post later.

Here’s another point to consider – Marilyn is the daughter of Lily’s sister.  At the time of the original series, Lily Dracula Munster was 304 years old.  Sam Dracula, her father, was 378 years old.

So let’s say his other daughter was perhaps 200 years younger than her sister Lily.  Maybe closer in age, and perhaps even older than Lily since she had Marilyn before Lily gave birth to Eddie.

It could be that she gave birth to Marilyn as far back as the 1800s. This would make Marilyn not only a shape-shifter, but an immortal.   She may have been the actual succubus in the family which would have kept her youthful….

Such a situation would not have struck the Munsters as being abby normal, which is why they never brought it up, just as they never mentioned that she looked different from one moment in her life to the next.

However, the fact that she was so beautiful?  Qu’ Elle horror!  Her “homeliness” would always be a topic of conversation.

So it’s pozz’ble, just pozz’ble, that as an immortal, we may have seen Marilyn Munster in the past.

Long past….

The Virginian
- The Substitute
... Mary Lou

In order to avoid disappointing her family back in Transylvania, Marilyn changed her name to a variation, calling herself “Mary Lou” when she worked as a saloon girl back at the turn of the 20th Century.  (‘The Virginian’ began in 1898.)

Dr. Kildare
- A Candle in the Window
... Student Nurse

This is why I think she was studying nursing in college – six years later, she would be a fully accredited nurse.  That might be her in the background?  I couldn't find the episode online.

The Munsters
[Looking like Beverly Owen]
15 episodes

The Munsters
[Looking like Pat Priest]
57 episodes

"Munsters, Go Home!"

- Samantha's Lost Weekend
... Nurse

As a nurse, maybe Marilyn helped provide nourishment for Grandpa with the supplies on hand….

"The Munsters' Revenge" (1981)

I would have liked to have included other roles played by Beverly Owen, but her characters in single episodes of ‘The Virginian’ and ‘Wagon Train’ had a father or a husband and a sister respectively.  That would play hob with the basic theory of relateeveety regarding the Munsters.  And so would the long-running roles she had in soap operas.

Even if we didn’t add in the other three appearances for Pat Priest, she still has accumulated the most appearances as Marilyn.  As such, she will be the face of Marilyn Munster in the official portrait gallery for the Television Crossover Hall of Fame.

Welcome to the Hall, Ms. Marilyn!  You’ll find your uncle, your aunt, and your grandfather are already members here, waiting for you.

But we're really going to have to do something about your cousin Eddie….

One last O'Bservation:
Wikipedia says Marilyn's last name might have been "Mundane".  I think that would have been fitting.  But I would have spelled it "Mundaigne".....

Wednesday, October 23, 2019


I always say that TV is a teaching tool, and  the series premiere of ‘The Watchmen’ on HBO proved that.

I had never heard about this historical event before!

From Wikipedia:
The Tulsa race riot (also called the Tulsa race massacre, Greenwood Massacre, or the Black Wall Street Massacre) of 1921 took place on May 31 and June 1, 1921, when mobs of white residents attacked black residents and businesses of the Greenwood District in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  It has been called "the single worst incident of racial violence in American history."

The attack, carried out on the ground and by air, destroyed more than 35 square blocks of the district — at that time the wealthiest black community in the United States, known as "Black Wall Street".

More than 800 people were admitted to hospitals and more than 6,000 black residents were arrested and detained, many for several days.  The Oklahoma Bureau of Vital Statistics officially recorded 36 dead, but the American Red Cross declined to provide an estimate. A 2001 state commission examination of events estimated that between 100 to 300 African Americans were killed in the rioting.

The riot began over Memorial Day weekend after 19-year-old Dick Rowland, a black shoeshiner, was accused of assaulting Sarah Page, the 17-year-old white elevator operator of the nearby Drexel Building. He was taken into custody. A subsequent gathering of angry local whites outside the courthouse where Rowland was being held, and the spread of rumors he had been lynched, alarmed the local black population, some of whom arrived at the courthouse armed. Shots were fired and twelve people were killed; ten white and two black.  As news of these deaths spread throughout the city, mob violence exploded. Thousands of whites rampaged through the black neighborhood that night and the next day, killing men and women, burning and looting stores and homes. About 10,000 black people were left homeless, and property damage amounted to more than $1.5 million in real estate and $750,000 in personal property ($32 million in 2019).

For more, click here:

Friday, October 18, 2019


Alfred Hitchcock (13 August 1899 – 29 April 1980)

Save for the behind the scenes talent who are inducted in September, I try to limit the League of Themselves inductees to March.  It's a pitiable month with only one decent holiday to it; and I thought it could be livened up a bit with its own theme for the Television Crossovers Hall of Fame.

But when it comes to THIS guy, what better month is there to induct the legendary…..


Best known as a film director, he is probably the most recognizable of movie directors of all Time.  And that was certainly fueled by his cameos in his own movies as well as hosting several TV anthology shows – one even after he was dead!

From Wikipedia:
Sir Alfred Joseph Hitchcock, KBE (13 August 1899 – 29 April 1980) was an English film director and producer, widely regarded as one of the most influential and extensively studied filmmakers in the history of cinema. Known as "the Master of Suspense", he directed over 50 feature films in a career spanning six decades, becoming as well known as any of his actors thanks to his many interviews, his cameo roles in most of his films, and his hosting and producing of the television anthology Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1955–1965). His films garnered a total of 46 Oscar nominations and six wins.

From 1955 to 1965, Hitchcock was the host of the television series Alfred Hitchcock Presents. With his droll delivery, gallows humour and iconic image, the series made Hitchcock a celebrity. The title-sequence of the show pictured a minimalist caricature of his profile (he drew it himself; it is composed of only nine strokes), which his real silhouette then filled. The series theme tune was "Funeral March of a Marionette" by the French composer Charles Gounod (1818–1893).

His introductions always included some sort of wry humour, such as the description of a recent multi-person execution hampered by having only one electric chair, while two are shown with a sign "Two chairs—no waiting!"

He directed 18 episodes of the series, which aired from 1955 to 1965. It became 'The Alfred Hitchcock Hour' in 1962, and NBC broadcast the final episode on 10 May 1965.

In the 1980s, a new version of 'Alfred Hitchcock Presents' was produced for television, making use of Hitchcock's original introductions in a colourised form.

Here are the credits which earned Hitch membership in the Hall:

268 episodes

93 episodes

77 episodes

“You, Murderer”

With that last one, again it was digital resuscitation like the 1985 coninuation of his series.  And since that ran for four years, I can’t see how it can be protested that he was brought back for a miniscule cameo.

Considering this occurred in ‘Tales From The Crypt’, I like to think that it was Hitchcock’s ghost we were seeing.


At any rate, welcome to the Hall, Sir Alfred!