Thursday, April 21, 2005



For the first batch of options regarding new shows for Detective Munch to appear in (and thus raise his all-time high from six - seven if you count 'Homicide: The Movie'), we're not going to stray any farther than his own backyard.

And that means the lineup of shows on NBC. We might even send him off to beautiful downtown Burbank!

'Fear Factor'
Um..... no thanks.

'The Apprentice'
Screw Trump.

Let's stick with shows that are more believable......

Scenario: The Dubois Family heads east to spend their vacation in the Big Apple. And while there, Allison has a vision which only Detective Munch believes in, skeptic though he may be.

'Las Vegas'
This time, Munch goes on vacation and he heads out to Nevada to investigate one of his favorite conspiracy theories, and maybe even get close enough to explore Area 51. But while there he decides to check out the action at the Montecito.

They would probably ask him to leave, however. In the glitzy world of Vegas, Munch's jaundiced attitude would bring down the room.

'The West Wing'
Off limits!

This show is in another TV dimension entirely, where Jed Bartlet is President and George W. Bush probably is still an owner of a baseball team.

We know Munch must have a counterpart in that universe, like Fidel Castro, Jay Leno, Penn & Teller, and Professor Lawrence Lessig do. After all, we know from 'St. Elsewhere' that Josiah Bartlet became a surgeon in Earth Prime Time's Boston.

But it would be too much to ask of an audience to accept this John Munch has a dimensional doppelganger. And it would push 'The West Wing' into territory best left to 'Stargate SG-1'.

'Crossing Jordan'
This could be part of a full-blown crossover, the whole two-episode job. It doesn't have to be a stealth cameo.

It would begin on Sunday night with 'Crossing Jordan' as the Boston medical examiners try to determine the identity of their corpse. The trail would lead them back to New York where they work with the 'Special Victims Unit' on Tuesday.

And that's when Munch is reunited with Garrett Macy with whom he once butted horns over a woman.

An added bonus - in an attempt to one-up Macy, Munch could mention that he once worked on a case with the legendary Dr. Quincy.

'American Dreams'
This is probably an exercise in futility; I think we've seen the last of Meg and her family and her friends at 'American Bandstand'.

Even so, we could still make a claim for Munch's presence during that time period in Philadelphia. And we wouldn't even need Richard Belzer to pull it off.

(We couldn't use him even if there were to be fresh episodes next season; he's too old now. They would have to cast a young actor to play Munch as a teenager, as they did once in an episode of 'Homicide: Life On The Street'.)

But let's say the show is officially dead. All that's needed is a little detective work and perseverance. Somebody willing to do the work could look through all the "atmosphere people" to find a gangly, gawky teen with glasses and a bad complexion. So long as that teen geek was never identified by name, we could claim it was Munch.

Forget it. Why bother? Not because it's set in Chicago - I'm sure Munch would make the trip just for the chance to meet Carl Kolchak!

No, I wouldn't want Munch to appear on this show because I hate 'ER'.

Besides, if the creators of 'Homicide: Life On The Street' were really interested in a crossover with 'ER', they would have done so in the episode "Doll's Eyes". Instead, the heart which was harvested for transplant was sent to 'Chicago Hope' (on another network!), where it was received by Dr. Jeffrey Geiger. (Geiger will one day join Munch in the Crossover Hall of Fame!)

And we don't have to limit Munch to just the dramas......

'Will & Grace'
This aging sag-hag of a sitcom has been renewed for next season, so anything goes by now. Munch's love life has always been a battlefield, and the situation should not be any different when he goes out on a blind date with Karen in a cameo appearance.

I have a feeling next season 'Will & Grace' is going to be the official embarrassment which the network will finally realize. So if Munch did appear on that show it should just be a cameo. A quick get-in and get-out......
Karen's used to those.

I like the idea that Munch and the Janitor may have gone to high school together. (Janitor probably put the Munchkin through the same kind of hell that JD now suffers.)

Munch might run into him accidentally while visiting Sacred Heart Hospital and end up going mano a mano with Dr. Cox in a battle of sarcasm.

I suppose Joey could go back east, visit the rest of the family, and tag along with Munch to study him for a movie role. But again, I'd rather turn to Munch's "love life". What I'd like to see would be Belzer teamed up with Jennifer Coolidge as man-hungry Bobbi.

However, Joey's slut of a creepy sister Gina might be a more logical choice. Who knows? Maybe Munch is the father of her son Michael.......

I suppose having a dying clown in your closet might be investigated by the 'Special Victims Unit'.......


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