Thursday, September 3, 2015



1]  Edith Head
"Requiem For A Falling Star"
To no avail, the Oscar-winning costume designer tried to upgrade Lt. Columbo's look.  But even the tie was a no-go.

2]  Nancy Walker
"Uneasy Lies The Crown"

3]  Dick Sargent
"Uneasy Lies The Crown"

4]  Ron Cey
"Uneasy Lies The Crown"
The above three were all poker-playing buddies of Columbo's prime suspect who were able to vouch for him.


5]  Curtis Credel
"Troubled Waters"
Of them all, Credel's televersion is different from his life in the Trueniverse.  He was an actor but now is retired in Florida where he runs a used car company, but in this episode he was working as a cruise ship magician.

6]  Little Richard
"Columbo And The Murder Of A Rock Star"

It was this last entry that made me realize Little Richard deserves to be inducted into the Television Crossover Hall of Fame.  It was my brother AJ that spurred me into looking into his credentials for membership and I was amazed how many shows he can link together by appearing as his own televersion.  So look for him to be our February 2016 candidate, whether or not I dedicate the entire year to the League of Themselves.


These weren't the only ones - Carole Hemingway, Jeanne Wolff, and the argument could be made for Clete Roberts as the TV anchorman.  (Johnny Carson shows up on TV hosting the 'Tonight' show.)


Wednesday, September 2, 2015


Last year I wrote about the "real" events in Toobworld which inspired the movie "Casablanca".

I've now discovered another TV show that can link into this tele-mosaic:


The IMF team tempts an art lover, who stole a secret missile fuel formula, to return the formula in exchange for a one of a kind art object. But he declines. So Jim begins a complex deception to convince his partner he has been double crossed. But the formula is still locked in a safe rigged to explode when enemy agents arrive.
- Written by David Foss

That art-loving thief was named Victor Laszlo, and yes of course we damned well have a theory of relateeveety for him!

This Victor Laszlo is the nephew to the famous freedom fighter during World War II.  He's too old to be the son of Victor and Ilsa Laszlo, but just the right age to have been the son of Victor's heretofore unknown older brother and named in honor of his uncle.

The older brother took his family to America to avoid reprisals by the Nazis for his brother's crusade to rally the people of Europe against the Third Reich.  Unfortunately, his son fell in with a gang on the Lower East Side of New York, and so began his life of crime.  Eventually his path crossed that of the IMF and they brought that career to a rather sudden end.....


Tuesday, September 1, 2015


I don’t know if somebody was pulling a fast one with a joke news story, but they’re claiming that ‘Sleepy Hollow’ and ‘Bones’ will cross over next season on FOX.  It will be a two part story, running on both shows.  (Next season, they will share the same night on the schedule – Thursdays from 8 to 10 pm EST.)

I’m being skeptical because this may yet be a case of “The Boy Who Cried FOX” – several years ago it was announced that ‘Bones’ would cross over with ‘Lie To Me’ which starred Tim Roth as an expert in reading people for the Truth.  But that never came about.  Burn me once…..

I’m not about to toss ‘Bones’ overboard from the good ship Toobworld even though ‘Sleepy Hollow’ has to take place in an alternate dimension:  Not only has the actual story by Washington Irving been portrayed in Earth Prime-Time, but several other TV shows have made reference to the source material.  (Chief among these would be ‘Murder, She Wrote’ with its ‘The Night Of The Headless Horseman’ episode.)

‘Sleepy Hollow’ does share a dimension with one other show with a similar premise, in which the main characters are adapted from BookWorld but who operate in a TV dimension centuries beyond when the original stories took place.  And it’s a world where those original books are not acknowledged.  That other show?  ‘Elementary’.

But there’s nothing to say that this “Lit-Less” Toobworld can’t still have their own version of characters from the main Toobworld.  But definitely the world of ‘Bones’, Earth Prime-Time can’t support a modern day Ichabod Crane.

We’ve seen this situation happen in the past.  Perhaps the most recent occurrence was when the reboot of ‘Hawaii Five-0’ crossed over with ‘NCIS: LA’.  Just for that one plotline, we were watching the counterparts to G. Callan and Sam Hanna from the Land O’ Remakes rather than the usual suspects of Toobworld One.

So I’m not too excited by this; it doesn’t help explore the main TV Universe at all.  But I will be recording it and watching it.  You can bet on that!

‘Bones’ and ‘Sleepy Hollow’ will return October 1, but it looks like this crossover won’t be on the schedule until later in the 2015-16 season.  I would expect it for the February Sweeps.


Monday, August 31, 2015



In 1859, Major Seth Adams was trying to build his reputation as a manager for prize-fighters in New York City when he first met Constable Dan Hogan of the City's police force.  Dan took up the challenge to fight Adams' fighter known as "The Tinsmith", putting down his own money in a bet with Adams at 4 to 1 odds against him.  Constable Hogan went on to win the fight (more or less easily) and reaped $2500 for his efforts, which led to Seth Adams retirement from the prize-fighting business and squashed his plans to become a showman.


With this money he was able to provide a secure future for himself and the woman he loved - Mary Richards, the daughter of John Richards, the NYC Police Commissioner.  They got married and then headed west, eventually buying a ranch just outside the town of Sweet Sabbath.

Mary got pregnant during the wagon train journey west and she gave birth to a daughter they named Jenny in 1860.  A few years later she was joined by her little brother, Dan, Jr.  (The boy was never named in the episode, only referred to as "your younger brother" when talking to Jenny.  But I think it would be logical to expect that he would be named for his father.)


Eventually when Jenny grew up, she married a man who swept her away from Sweet Sabbath, north to Roseburg, Minnesota.  (I'm assuming Sweet Sabbath was located in Kansas.)

Jenny's daughter married a man with the same last name as her grandmother's - Richards.  In 1912, Mrs. Richards gave birth to a son whom they named Walter Reed Richards.

Walter Reed Richards was probably named in honor of Dr. Walter Reed, the US Army physician who had died ten years previously.  Just the year before, in 1901, Dr. Richards and his team proved that a certain species of mosquito was the carrier for yellow fever.  The timing was beneficial for Mary Hogan's grand-daughter as the man she would one day marry had been suffering from yellow fever while working on the Panama Canal.  

Thanks to the work done by Dr. Richards, a cure was administered which saved his life and he headed home to Minnesota where he would meet the young woman who would eventually become his wife.

When Dr. Richards and his wife Dorothy (aka "Dottie") had their daughter, it was Walt's mother who suggested that the baby be named after her own grandmother, Mary Richards Hogan, to bring that name back to life in their family tree.


And that's how a TV Western couple is related to the former news producer of WJM-TV.

(Mary Richards would one day marry Congressman Cronin, who later died while mountain climbing.  They had one daughter, Rose, who may have had children of her own by now.)


John Richards was only the NY Police Commissioner in Toobworld, but he can be shoe-horned into the list of the real commissioners.  George Washington Matsell served as the Superintendent of Police until 1857, but there would not be an actual police comissioner - John Alexander Kennedy - until 1860.  So Richards could have served in the post for that two year interregnum......


Sunday, August 30, 2015


Since the next Tuesday News Day falls on September 1st, outside our showcase to the TV Western......


This is the episode in which we meet the woman who married the episode's central character - the first Mary Richards.....


And that brings to an end this year's annual TV Western Showcase in August.  And to have it end with a theory of relateeveety linking to one of my five favorite TV shows?  Couldn't ask for a better send-off!



Originally, I had the entire 'Wagon Train' episode "The Dan Hogan Story" slated to run today to cap off this year's salute to the TV Western.  But the story should have run back in August of 2014....  However, the death of James Garner that year meant a change in plans.  August 2014 became a showcase salute to Mr. Garner and his many co-stars in the movie version of 'Maverick'.  And that meant all those previously crafted posts had to be pushed forward to 2015.  

Unfortunately this is one post that refused to remain preserved; for whatever reason the episode was taken down at YouTube at some point after June of 2014.  (Luckily I got some screencaps which you'll see tomorrow.)

So here are the pertinent reasons I wanted to use it as the last Video Sunday in this month's salute to the TV Western.......

From the IMDb:
In a growing town, Seth meets a friend from his distant past. He remembers how they met and the circumstances bringing them west. When his friend's home is threatened, not ever wearing a gun surprisingly helps him rather than the reverse.

When the train arrives in a small but wild town Adams finds an old friend Dan Hogan. Dan is a great boxer but refuses to wear a gun. He was a constable in New York City who has come west with his wife and family. Hs friend Cliff is in debt to Jason Rance who wants Cliff's cattle herd. The local Marshal wants Dan to be a deputy as he thinks he can control the town and Rance. Dan declines but when he takes a stand against Rance for Cliff, he finds himself facing Rance or leaving town. His wife convinces him to leave town much to the chagrin of Adams and the citizens of the town. Dan is at peace with his decision until he learns Cliff has been killed. 

For me, the special interest of the story was that Rachel Ames played Mary Hogan, Dan's wife.  In a flashback sequence we learned that her maiden name was Mary Richards.  I see nothing that would hinder the theory of relateeveety suggestion that she had at least one brother whose grandson (Dr. Walter Reed Richards) would have named his daughter after his great aunt.  And therefore?  A hypothetical connection between 'Wagon Train' and 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show'.

Movie Mistakes:
Major Seth Adams, played by Ward Bond, is introduced to Miss Mary Richards and addresses her as such. A few minutes later he says goodbye to Miss Richardson.

I don't see this as a mistake in the production of the episode.  Within the reality of the TV Universe, this was an example of Major Seth Adams' bad memory.  After all, he had only just met the woman!  It was a simple mistake to make.

One other point - it will always be my contention that Seth Adams was the brother of Dr. Galen Adams, the town doctor in Dodge City (as seen in 'Gunsmoke'.)

Tomorrow I'll delineate the lineage that links 'Wagon Train' and 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show' as the final entry in this month's showcase.

Happy trails to you!

Saturday, August 29, 2015


If you've been keeping track, the TVXOHOF inductee for our 2015 British Invasion in August, our traditional month for TV Westerns, is Phileas Fogg of Jules Verne's classic novel "Around The World In Eighty Days".

Fogg was inducted as a multiversal as well as a multidimensional.  This means that he is not only to be found in several fictional universes based on different media, like movies (the Cineverse) and of course in literature (BookWorld), but in many different dimensions of the television universe as well (known here as Toobworld, but also known as TV Land and simply the TV Universe.)  Some of these dimensions which are divergent from the main one, Earth Prime-Time, would be Skitlandia, Evil Toobworld, Disaster Toobworld, and the Tooniverse.

Fogg was part of the main cast of 'The Secret Adventures Of Jules Verne' and he was a guest character in an episode of 'Have Gun Will Travel'.  The timeline for Fogg's journey meshed perfectly with Paladin's as the globe-trotters made their way from San Francisco to Reno in 1872.  And that got me thinking that over the years there were other TV shows in which the British adventurer, his valet Passepartout, and the Princess Aouda could have come into contact with other TV characters known to have existed in 1872.

The fact that the actors chosen to play Fogg & Co. over the years would never be the same from one show to the next would have been of no import.  We splain away such recastaways by saying that we are seeing them from the point of view of one of the characters.  That would apply to either historical figures or literary/movie character adaptations.  

So with that in mind, here is my Super Six List of TV shows in which the main characters could have met Phileas Fogg in 1872.  And I'll toss in the actors who could have played the role at that point in Time....


This Bondian Western was always out there with the sci-fi/fantasy plots and characters, with several standing out in their explorations of dreamscapes and time travel.  So I think if Phileas Fogg was to cross the path of Jim West and Artemus Gordon, it would have been the opposite situation from his interaction with Paladin: they would have been at odds with each other.  The Secret Service agents would have been ordered to intercept Fogg as a favor to the British Ambassador due to the allegation that he robbed the Bank of England.  And that means Jim and Arte would have been working with the bumbling Inspector Fix.  It could have been that the train which carried Fogg across the Great Plains had Jim's special train car attached at the back.  As an added bonus, Fogg would have been assisted in his escape by Dr. Miguelito Quixote Loveless.  I think eventually the agents would have arranged for it to look like Fogg had outwitted them and escaped, once they realized he was innocent.

Actor as Fogg? 

My choice would have been David Niven, once again trying his luck in American television.  It would have been quite a "get" for CBS to land the actor who played the role in the big-budget Oscar-winning movie. 

Somehow Fogg's journey would have imperilled the chances for Joshua Smith and Thaddeus Jones to get that pardon from the Territorial Governor of Wyoming.  Perhaps the rumor would be spreading that the notorious bank robber from England had teamed up with the equally notorious Hannibal Heyes and Kid Curry.  Then it would have been in the best interests of the Kansas cousins to make sure Fogg and his party were safely out of the territory.  But getting them on board the train in time to keep to Fogg's schedule might have put them at risk of capture by Harry Briscoe and the Bannerman detectives.....

Actor as Fogg?

ABC was not known to be as free with the purse strings as CBS, so they wouldn't have gone after David Niven to return to the role.  As for another choice, it's a shame he had already appeared in the show and that I don't like recastaways, otherwise I might have suggested Patrick Macnee.  (But as I said, he had already been on the show in the episode "The Man Who Murdered Himself".)  So I have another suggestion in mind: Richard Briers, who was just two years away from playing Tom to Felicity Kendall's Barbara in 'Good Neighbours'.  He had a personality that would have fit the playful nature of that Western series.  (Briers is older in this picture than he should be as Fogg - probably from 'Monarch Of The Glen' - but it suggests the look I'd be seeking.)

Apparently, the rule of thumb for placing 'Bonanza' episodes on the Toobworld timeline is that they should have taken place 100 years before broadcast.  So looking at it backwards then, the storyline (in which Fogg arrives in Nevada after leaving Paladin's guidance) would  have to have been produced for presentation in 1972.  By then Pernell Roberts had been long gone from the Ponderosa and Dan Blocker was not long for the world.  I think Hoss would have been the best foil for dealing with Phileas Fogg and especially Passepartout, just remembering the episode in which he was going to test the wings developed by Ed Wynn's character.  But of course, if you wanted to put the spotlight on Princess Aouda, the go-to Cartwright would have to be Little Joe, when she perhaps wanted to make Fogg jealous.  And then there was always Candy Canady who could have been the featured character for that week.....

Actor as Fogg?

This patriarchal Western might have needed a British actor with not only a light touch if called for, but also the gravitas to stand toe to toe with the head of the Cartwright clan, Ben Cartwright.  (Ben might have given Fogg some help that would come in handy later - specifically, Ben might have offered to send his brother Aaron and son Adam for their aid in securing a ship to take Fogg and his traveling companions back to the Sceptr'd Isle.  With that in mind, I would suggest George Baker, who had not yet begun work as Tiberius in 'I, Claudius', but who was perhaps known to the American audience as one of the first Number Twos in 'The Prisoner'.

4} 'KUNG FU'
According to the "ever reliable" IMDb:  "[The] Pilot episode shows a telegram (59 min. in) dated November 1873, placing the character's birth squarely in the mid-19th century, 1840–1850.  (And I should point out that they were right this time.)

Just over a year before Dillon received that telegram, Kwai Chiang Caine could have been in Shanghai when Fogg and the Princess needed to board the Canartic which was bound for Yokohama.  Caine may have helped them overcome the obstacles that might have prevented them from reaching the steamer.

Actor as Fogg?

The aforementioned Patrick Macnee has been much on my mind since his passing a month or so ago.  I think that as the definitively dapper Englishman, he'd be a good choice for playing Phileas Fogg.  And since he only appeared in the show's sequel, 'Kung Fu: The Legend Continues', set in a much later time period, there is no impediment caused by being a recastaway.

This would have been the one show that had the most potential for a very humorous story.  I can envision Brother Bart Maverick in a card game with Passepartout rather than with Fogg.  And for most of the game, Bart would be winning, heavily, against the manservant.  It would get to the point where the onlookers would be pleading with Bart to put Passepartout out of his misery by ending the game.  And that's when the conniving valet would turn the tables on that tall dark stranger there: he not only would win back all his own money, but take Bart for everything he had and then some.  With no other recourse to pay Passepartout back, Bart accepts the only option offered him - to serve as Fogg's valet for two weeks while Passepartout enjoys a bit of a vacation.  (By the way, I chose Bart over Bret for this dream episode because Bart had a better handle on the humor when he was stuck in such a hapless situation.)  An added possibility: Phileas knew Beau Maverick when he had been banished to England by Pappy!

Actor as Fogg?

Because 'Maverick' was produced close in time to when 'Have Gun Will Travel' did their episode based on the Jules Verne novel, why not have those three guest stars all return to the same roles?  (The Princess and Passepartout are seen here.  Fogg is seen at the top of the page.)
  • Patrick Knowles as Phileas Fogg
  • Jon Silo as Jean Passepartout
  • Arlene McQuade as Princess Aouda
This would have been the easiest of the bunch to splain away for making sure the Doctor was shoe-horned into the journey's timeline at some point between October of 1872 when Fogg makes the bet at his club, and the week before Christmas of that year.  Personally, I would prefer that the Doctor encountered Fogg at some point in the Pacific between the time they left Shanghai on board the General Grant and before they reached San Francisco.  Why?  Because it was during that ocean voyage that Fogg had reached the half-way point in his journey.  In itself, that might not be so spectacular for a 'Doctor Who' story, except from an outsider's point of view.  That is, from the perspective of a Whovian in the Trueniverse audience.  You see, Fogg reached that point on November 23, a special date in 'Doctor Who' lore.  Most importantly, it was the date on which 'Doctor Who' premiered on English TV in 1963.  And within the television universe it's also the birthday of the Doctor's Companion Clara Osgood, who was born in 1986.  

As for the reason why the TARDIS  would bring the Doctor together with Phileas Fogg, first we'd have to decide on which incarnation of the Doctor would be involved.  I suppose I could run through the entire list of the Doctors and find an appropriate actor from each point in time.  But why put myself through all that work?  I'm going to look at it as a possibility for a future episode with Peter Capaldi as the current incarnation.

And since we're already dealing with at most four characters from BookWorld (if we include Inspector Fix), why not have the threat for this adventure be from the literary universe as well?  Why not have Fogg's vessel the General Grant be attacked by Cthullhu, rising from the watery depths of R'lyeh?  First off, H.P. Lovecraft's Old One would link 'Doctor Who' to several other TV shows.....

Actor as Fogg?  

So somebody current, easiest of the bunch to cast....  How about Toby Stephens?  Dashing, a proper age to play the role....

So those are my suggestions for Fogg's appearances in other TV shows.  Let me know if you have any ideas of other options.


Friday, August 28, 2015


'Alias Smith And Jones' is one of those TV series that begin in one dimension but then the perspective is changed to that of the same characters (but not always the same actors) in a different dimension.

Two other examples:

1] 'The Dead Zone' - Once Greg Stillson became the Vice President of the United States (on his way to becoming the President), we left John Smith of Earth Prime-Time and instead followed his doppelganger in a new Toobworld.

2] 'Arrow' - For thirty episodes, this was a welcome addition to the main Toobworld, joining such shows as 'Batman', 'The Adventures Of Superman', 'The Incredible Hulk', 'Spiderman', 'Wonder Woman' and 'The Flash'.  And it's because of 'The Flash' that 'Arrow' had to be shipped off to the comic book Toobworld where 'Lois & Clark' and 'Agents Of SHIELD' exist.  There is only one Barry Allen for Earth Prime-Time and he's John Wesley Shipp.  (Although it is cool that he'll be in the new 'Flash' series as Barry Allen's father.

'AS&J' had to be split into two different dimensions because of the untimely death of Pete Duel who played Hannibal Heyes aka Joshua Smith.  The show's narrator, Roger Davis, was then brought into the show as the new Heyes/Smith.


For the record, I don't elevate one version over the other, even if I do prefer the Pete Duel episodes.  But Roger Davis brings some excellent qualities to the role, especially a quiet sense of humor, and he does look as though he belonged in that time period.

I once tried to keep both versions of 'AS&J' in the same dimension with an elaborate blog post in which the reanimated corpse of Danny Bilson (aka "The Smiler") - brought back to life by Mr. Garrity - housed the the mind of Hannibal Heyes which had been transferred from his dying original body - by Dr. Loveless!

But it was all too complicated and was instrumental in getting me to subscribe to the mantra of Occam's Razor when it came to my televisiological theories.

Besides, it never took into account that each week we saw the earlier years of Hannibal Heyes and Kid Curry replayed out as though the Pete Duel version never existed.

That's a good deal?

What still needed splainin was why there was a marked change in the DNA of Hannibal Heyes in that alternate dimension and yet all the other characters looked as they did in those earlier episodes.  Characters like Harry Briscoe, Big Mac MacReady, and of course Kid Curry/Thaddeus Jones.

If they had all been recast, I would have just tossed that second part of the series into the Land O' Remakes.....


The simplest splainin may still be complicated in the details, but here goes....

The opening credits of the show always referred to Heyes and Curry as "these two Kansas cousins".  And I believe that's true - they were actually cousins... but not by blood.

In the preceding generation, Mrs. Heyes was either the sister to Mister or Missus Jones, or Mr. Heyes was the brother to Mrs. Jones.  Either way, Mr. and Mrs. Heyes could not have children of their own and so they chose to adopt from a local orphanage.

In Earth Prime-Time, they adopted the baby who would grow up to be Pete Duel's Hannibal Heyes.  "Over There" in the other TV dimension, their new-born addition to the family would one day be the Joshua Smith as played by Roger Davis.

Basically?  The luck of the draw.

And since we saw Roger Davis in the original run of 'Alias Smith And Jones' as Danny Bilson, the deadly "Smiler With A Gun", it's likely that Heyes and Bilson were in that same orphanage in both dimensions.

This is not to say that the Pete Duel baby in that other dimension would be adopted by the Bilson family.  And even if he was, there's no guarantee he would have grown up to have the same temperament and destiny as the original.  In fact, he could have grown up to become a minister or a farmer.....

Happy trails to you!

Thursday, August 27, 2015


"Out of the night comes a man who saves lives at the risk of his own. 
Once a circus performer, an aerialist who refused the net. 
Once a cat burglar, a master among jewel thieves. 
Now a professional bodyguard. 
Primitive... savage... in love with danger. 
The Cat!"

From Wikipedia:
This was the intro of a series that was, for a variety of reasons, truly ahead of its time. It had a hero who was a reformed thief, having spent an unspecified term in prison, and of Gypsy heritage. In the mold of famed private-eye Peter Gunn and the waterfront bar 'Mother's', Cat operated out of the 'Casa Del Gato' (House Of The Cat) in San Francisco, of which he was part owner.

Thomas Hewitt Edward Cat may have had gypsy blood, but not all of his ancestors were Romani.  On his mother's side T.H.E. Cat was descended from an English valet named Edward Hewitt.  

In the late 1870s, Hewitt found himself in California where he amassed a staggering gambling debt.  This brought him into contact with Victoria Barkley and after the advenure which brought them together, she invited him to be her guest on the ranch.  (It was suggested that eventually Mr. Hewitt would start a new career in the culinary arts.)

Although it looked as though Victoria and Hewitt might one day become more than friends, I think the old reprobate from England instead fell for a woman many years his junior.  And she gave birth to the children who would continue his family tree.

And I think a grand-daughter or great grand-daughter would be the one to have married a Romany traveler (and was probably shunned by her family because of it.)  She may have married the grandson of big game hunter, criminal, and circus owner Warren Trevor. (I would think "Warren Trevor" to be an obvious alias - to hide his Romani orgins, perhaps?  His son may have changed the family name back to Gato, hence the "Cat" of future generations.....)

But this great grand-daughter would have kept her connection to her family alive with the naming of her own son - Thomas Hewitt Edward.  And Edward Hewitt would have been the lad's great-great-grandfather.....

So endeth another theory of relateeveety.


'T.H.E. Cat'
'The Big Valley' - "Danger Road"
'The Wild, Wild West' - "The Night Of Sudden Death"


Wednesday, August 26, 2015


Forty-five years ago today......

In Toobworld, it was referenced this year in the May 3rd episode of the final season for 'Mad Men'....