Saturday, August 5, 2006


The plotline for the premiere episode of 'The Minor Accomplishments Of Jackie Woodman' on IFC hinged on bumping into (literally) Sally Kellerman. As a follower of the Step-Up cult, Ms. Kellerman was spacey, self-centered, and by the end, scarily evil.

It was probably the most destructive depiction of one's self in a sitcom since Lloyd Bridges portrayed himself on 'Ned & Stacey' as a kleptomaniac neo-Nazi cross-dresser.

Also appearing as themselves in the episode were Merrill Markoe and 'Simpsons' producer Sam Simon. And both of them were the epitome of Hollywood's two-faced denizens.



At the recent Comic-Con in San Diego, 'Lost' producer Damon Lindelof was asked about the fact that each season only seems to cover just a few weeks of time.

"You're making a basic assumption that they've been there as long as [the characters] think they've been there," replied Lindelof. He hinted that perception may be changed in season 3.

This information seems to back up by a spoiler provided by a 'Lost' fanatic who calls himself "The Misfit". On his blog ("TheMisfitIsHere"), he claims that "The interrelationship between the outside world and the island will be something that will be a part of Season 3."

If so, such a discrepancy between the time spent on the island and the "real time" of the outside world will help the producers avoid dealing with a real-life event that surely must have some kind of impact even in the fictional realm of Toobworld: the tsunami that wiped out thousands of lives right after Christmas of 2004.

As is the case with the World Trade Center destruction on 9/11 and the current war in Iraq, any TV show that would have some connection to such a devastating event should address it and not ignore it. Otherwise I think it would be not only an insult to the intelligence and maturity of the viewer, but also an indignity to the memory of those thousands who perished in the onslaught of Nature that day.

And since the island of 'Lost' is in that general vicinity, and Oceanic Flight 815 crashed near the end of September of 2004, eventually the show would have to address the tragedy of the Boxing Day Tsunami.

Up until the statement made by Lindelof, there was a generally accepted timeline for the events on the island. The first season was roughly just over 40 days in length; and based on the statements made by Desmond upon his return to the island, he was only gone for about two weeks on his boat, trying to escape. So the entire second season must have been squeezed into that fourteen day time frame.

That would put the timeline for 'Lost' at about the middle of November, nearly. A month later and the tsunami would wreak havoc on the mainland, and perhaps on the island itself. Within the "reality" of 'Lost', perhaps the creation of the tsunami could be linked to the ultimate destruction of the Hatch in the season finale; an event that might have shifted the tectonic plates in the region and ultimately cause the earthquake which created the tsunami.

But now, if it's true that time is passing slower in the outside world than it is in the perception of the castaways, then the producers of 'Lost' can avoid any mention of that cataclysm for probably as long as they want. They could even get through the projected five seasons of the series without ever having to worry about it.

Had they left the timeline for the island to run naturally, then eventually they would have to address it, because the Boxing Day Tsunami is going to become part of the fictional reality of Toobworld officially. Filming has begun in Phuket (which was mentioned on 'Lost') and Khao Lak in Thailand for a mini-series co-produced by HBO and the BBC.

Tim Roth and Toni Collette are starring in the production, along with Sophie Okonedo, Hugh Bonneville and Chiwetel Ejiofor. Other actors involved include Gina McKee, Kate Ashfield, Samarit MacHielsen and Grirggiat Punpiputt.

As you can imagine, a lot of the local populaton weren't too pleased with the idea of a TV movie swooping in to - as they saw it - capitalize on their personal tragedies in the aftermath of the disaster.

Had the timeline been allowed to play out naturally, who knows when it may have occurred in the show. Third season? Fifth? This new bit of sci-fi technobabble will now help the producers from ever having to address it at all.


Friday, August 4, 2006


I went into FYE today with only one purchase in mind - the recently released DVD box set of the single season 'The Adventures Of Brisco County, Jr.'......

It's recommended price was $99.97. FYE lopped off another ten. With my Backstage Pass discount.....

It was still too much. I'll take my chances with

So instead, I picked up these three beauties for less than the price I would have paid for just Brisco's box.

Now had it been Dixie Cousins' box......Giggety giggety giggety!

1) "The Point" by Harry Nilsson and narrated by Ringo Starr
I remember seeing this on ABC in those BC years (before cable). Back then, I KNOW it was narrated by Dustin Hoffman.

I wonder if, when I was a teenager, I would ever consider the concept of a Beatle as a replacement to be something of a let-down....

2) 'Hazel' - The complete first season
I used to love this show, but it lost something for me when Don DeFore and Whitney Blake were written out of the show to be replaced by other actors. Shirley Booth is fantastic however and her sheer force of will as this maid kept me from abandong the sitcom after the changeover.

This set is all 35 episodes from the first season on two discs.

3) 'Make Room For Daddy' - the complete fifth season
I didn't see the first four seasons offered there, so I wondered if they're even available. This could be a case like with 'The Joey Bishop Show' which began with the second season for its release of boxed sets.

The set also includes the episode which launched 'The Andy Griffith Show', footage of Danny performing with some of the Rat Pack, and for pure schmaltz, Danny's story about his relationship with St. Jude.

I have a feeling it will also include info on how to donate.

"Me and my dinero......"

Sorry, Schmilsson.



'Eureka', Oregon, may be a small town, but there still must be plenty of people working and living there so that we'll always have new faces to meet. (It can't ALWAYS be Henry Deacon who helps Sheriff Jack Carter out in emergencies, can it?)

With that in mind, I'd like to suggest one scientist I'd like to see as not only living in Eureka, but also working in Section 5 up in the Global Dynamics facility.

Jackson Roykirk.

Roykirk grew up in Carbon Creek, Pennsylvania, where he unknowingly encountered three Vulcans who had become stranded there. ('Enterprise' - "Carbon Creek")

When he grew up, he designed an interstellar probe that was originally programmed to seek out new life. The probe was launched in August of 2002.

Its name was "Nomad"..... ('Star Trek' - "The Changeling")

Roykirk doesn't have to figure in any major plot point; it would be nice just to have him introduced to Sheriff Carter, at the Cafe Diem, perhaps.

He should resemble the photo that was displayed of him in that episode of 'Star Trek'. Roykirk was portrayed by 'Star Trek' director Marc Daniels in that photo. So the actor chosen to play him on 'Eureka' must be burly and bearded as well.

And it's not as if Roykirk was going to be onscreen long enough to make that deep an impression; just a quick in and out, meet and greet would suffice. (Of course, with frame grabs and high def resolution, inevitably someone would have the comparison photos up online within minutes after the episode was broadcast!)

It's a simple request: get the minor character of Jackson Roykirk from 'Star Trek' to appear on 'Eureka' and thus make the connection between the two series.

Here's hoping somebody makes it so.....


Thursday, August 3, 2006


When 'Boston Legal' ended its second season in May, I was afraid we had seen the last of Denise Bauer at the law firm.

After all, she had just been told by Shirley Schmidt that she had no future at Crane Poole & Schmidt. And as she headed dejectedly back to her office, perhaps for the last time, there waiting for her was Daniel Post... with a marriage proposal.

So it would have been a bittersweet parting; at least she'd be happy, right? Ultra-rich guy - who was probably at death's door and who might leave her his entire fortune.

But she had been such a fun character to watch over the season. And who doesn't enjoy watching Julie Bowen?

But it looks as though we may get a reprieve. We may get to keep Bauer in Beantown a little while longer.

Thanks to, here's a preview of the first two episodes for the third season:

Episode 3.01 - Can't We All Get a Lung? [Airing September 26]: Denise is engaged to Daniel Post (Michael J. Fox), but she questions her choice when he is accused of buying a lung from a man dying of cancer, Tom Raulston. Tom's daughter, Megan, wants her father to keep fighting and testifies against them that Daniel agreed to pay for her college education in exchange for the lung.

Episode 3.02 - Pro Ana No Bono: Denise and Brad act awkward around each other.

Of course, that second episode, things don't look too good for Daniel no matter how the lung story turns out.

And whether or not Denise stays around beyond that?

We shall have to wait and view.....



Earlier today I mentioned how Lenny Bruce would have turned 80 this year had he not died forty years ago today.

Well, today happens to be the 80th birthday of another performer, the legendary crooner Tony Bennett.

Tony Bennett has made many appearances on TV talk shows and variety shows and in plenty of TV specials over the years, and he had his own variety show back in 1956. He's appeared with everybody from Judy Garland, Nat King Cole, and Frank Sinatra to Jackie Gleason, Hugh Hefner, and even Howard Stern.

If I'm not mistaken he also appeared on '60 Minutes' to discuss his sideline as a painter.

Tony Bennett has contributed a few characters to the roster of Toobworld. These include a fellow named Maximillian in five episodes of '77 Sunset Strip', a visitor to 'Evening Shade', Arkansas, by the name of Tony Lombardi, and Danny Williams' Lebanese cousin Stephen from Toledo who wanted to be a singer and not a haberdasher. (I wonder if he knew Max Klinger back in Toledo?)

But he made plenty of appearances as himself in fictional settings, mostly in sitcoms. So the birthday boy is eligible for induction into the Crossover Hall of Fame as an honored member of the League of Themselves.

"The Simpsons"
- Bart vs. Lisa vs. the Third Grade (2002) TV Episode (voice)
- Dancin' Homer (1990) TV Episode (voice)
- The First Gentleman (1998) TV Episode
"Space Ghost Coast to Coast"
- Joshua (1998) TV Episode
"Muppets Tonight"
- Episode #1.6 (1996) TV Episode
"Suddenly Susan"
- A Kiss Before Dying... on Stage (1997) TV Episode
- Zing! (1995) TV Episode
"SCTV Network 90"
- The Great White North Palace (1982) TV Episode
"King" (1978) (mini) TV Series

As you can see, Tony Bennett does have a toon version of himself in the Tooniverse. And his appearance in the mini-series about Martin Luther King, Jr. might mean that he has a counterpart in an alternate dimension, in much the same way Mel Torme had in an episode of 'Sliders'. (As for working with Muppets, which he also did in "Elmopalooza!", that's definitely to be found in Earth Prime-Time, the main Toobworld.)

At any rate, Tony Bennett is still going strong and here's hoping he gets the chance to appear in a few more TV shows as himself.

Maybe crooning one of Charlie Harper's jingles on 'Two And A Half Men'!

Happy Birthday, Mr. Bennett!



Since Toobworld Central is celebrating 'Law & Order' all year in the Toobworld Crossover Hall of Fame, I've been giving a lot of thought to possible expansions for the franchise - not in actual spin-offs, but rather in crossovers. And I think I have one that just might work......

'Law & Order' has been particularly beneficial for TNT. The joke is that you can turn on TNT at any point during the day and you'll land on an episode of 'Law & Order'. (For me, it's usually the episode about the defective pacemakers.)

As such, the deal with TNT has been quite lucrative for Wolf Films, and I would think it's in the best interests of both parties to make sure the arrangement continues. And I think they should also find a way to make their collaboration grow.

One way would be through an original crossover, from one network to the other; a crossover that involved 'Law & Order' on NBC and TNT's own 'The Closer' starring Kyra Sedgwick.

'Law & Order' has been on the air for a long time, and there's been quite a revolving door when it comes to the cast members over the years. Because of this, I think the best solution to overcoming any production stumbling blocks between the two production companies would be to make this a one episode crossover which would be part of the scheduled lineup for 'The Closer' and featuring characters from 'Law & Order' who are no longer part of the regular cast.

This solution would eliminate any contrived shuttling of characters back and forth between Los Angeles and New York City which has hobbled crossovers between 'Las Vegas' and 'Crossing Jordan' in the past. The case would be in LA's jurisdiction, and any characters from 'Law & Order' who are involved would already be out there, perhaps having retired from practicing law in Manhattan or serving as a detective there.

But if they're out in Los Angeles for nonprofessional reasons, then how can they become involved with an official police investigation into a high-priority murder by Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson's team?

That's easy enough - make the 'Law & Order' character the initial suspect.

I'm not a fanfic writer; I'm just a fanfic enabler. So here's my idea of how to do the storyline so that it could work......

'Law & Order' did a three-part story back in its seventh season which had the characters shuttling back and forth between the Big Apple and the City of Angels. They were investigating the murder of a film studio executive, whose dismembered body had been fished out of the river. (They traced her identity through her breast implants. It has nothing to do with my idea, but I wanted to mention that because I have the mind of a 14 year old Catholic school boy and it makes me giggle.)

At first they suspected the exec's personal trainer and when he fled back to LA, they followed right after. Once out there, however, the investigation took a new turn and they focused instead on a movie director who was the ex-husband of the victim.

During all of this, Detective Rey Curtis began a flirtatious friendship with another executive at the studio, Lisa Lundquist. Previously, Curtis had apparently had an extramarital fling and when his wife found out, she tossed him out.

But even though Lisa was not only receptive to the idea of romancing the NY cop, but actively pursuing it by kissing him, Curtis retreated from spending the night with her. Still, she kept up the pressure on him, following him to New York (although on official company business) and inviting him out on her yacht when he had to return to LA. There she dangled before him not only the chance to have a relationship with her, but also a cushy job in security which would include trips around the world and the chance to rub elbows with some of Tinseltown's brightest and biggest stars.

But Rey Curtis still had hopes of making things right with his wife and reuniting with her and their daughters, so he not only turned down the job but also broke off things with Lisa before they even had a real chance to get started.

It didn't help much as his relationship with her was dragged into the trial and twisted during testimony to look worse than it really was. And when Lisa called Rey at home while he was trying to reconcile with his wife, it nearly caused a permanent rift in his marriage.

But all worked out well for the Curtis family, with only his wife's MS ailment still casting a shadow over their home life. It finally progressed to the point where he had to take a leave of absence from the force to care for her and raise his daughters.

And that's how it stands for the status of Detective Rey Curtis and 'Law & Order'. Benjamin Bratt, who played Curtis, returned to NBC last year with 'E-Ring'; but since that series failed, perhaps he might be receptive to the idea of bringing back Rey Curtis for a one-shot on 'The Closer'.

To make him a possible suspect in a murder case to be investigated by Chief Johnson's team, I think the most obvious choice for victim should be Lisa Lundquist. The main reason, from a real-world standpoint, is that the role had been played by Lauren Graham, who at this time is pretty much occupied with 'Gilmore Girls' over on the new CW. Since 'The Closer' begins after the fact of the murder, we wouldn't need her participation at all. (If she was found suspiciously drowned near her abandoned yacht, the effects of submersion in the ocean would pretty much demand the use of a dummy to mimic the decay of the body.)

Motive could certainly be supplied - perhaps after all these years, maybe Rey did once again pick up on the opportunity to have an affair with her; and accepted the security position as well. (And so as not to make a former hero on 'Law & Order' look like a sleazeball, let's assume his wife has passed away from the MS. So his relationship with Lisa could be seen as acceptable.)

But when he finally decided to end the affair, maybe she threatened his job which he needed to support his daughters. So on the surface, Rey Curtis would look like a good candidate for a suspect.

There could be a small scene perhaps where Chief Johnson calls back to the 27th Precinct in New York and talks to Lt. Anita Van Buren; getting details on Rey Curtis as a cop and as a person. That would then solidify the crossover aspects with 'Law & Order'. Or failing that, perhaps Lt. Van Buren could make mention of the case in passing during a later episode of her own show.

Eventually, Rey Curtis should be eliminated as a suspect. (God forbid I should ever suggest he turns out to be the actual murderer! Besides, Chris Noth beat me to that idea with the tele-movie "Exiled"......)

Perhaps in his capacity as a security officer at the studio, he could offer his services and expertise to Brenda's team; eventually helping them collar the real killer. This could lead to the type of scene where Brenda Leigh offers Rey the chance to join her high priority team. But since he has to put his daughters first, he'll stick with the security job. "More pay, less hours" type of reasoning.

One thing they would have to do to keep the reality of the crossover intact - make sure that Rey Curtis never shares a scene with JK Simmons as Chief William Pope. Otherwise the audience viewing at home would wonder why Curtis doesn't mistake him for Dr. Emil Szoda!

It's just an idea, yet another Toobworld Wish-craft, that I'm throwing out for consideration.

Thank yew. Thank yew ever so much......



When it comes to the cutting edge of technology, I'm still a rather dull blade. For example, I'm a dinosaur when it comes to getting online; a "dialupagus". And I still use a VCR rather than TiVo or other DVR system.

So I've basically been sitting out the whole online 'Lost' experience, preferring just to read about the stuff that people find through the various web links and whatnot. At best, I have seen the Rachel Blake outburst at Comic-Con, thanks to

Perhaps it will all end up in a DVD boxed set, perhaps not.

But I was curious if any of my small coterie of email Lostaway friends (mostly Iddiots from the Idiot's Delight Digest group) were playing along.

So I asked them:

What are your feelings about all the little Lost extras popping up on the web, on your cell phone, in your bookstore? If you are a Lost fan, do youfind them as addicting as the show itself, or do you mostly just ignore them?

And Brian-El replied:

I take it you haven't been playing the game. So far, people are reallyannoyed because all we've found out is that McIntyre ("makes family values a priority") is having an affair, another dude didn't go to the school listed on his resume, contracts (like with Jeep) have been canceled due to some unknown event, and Hanso himself hasn't been seen in public for over four years.

But, of course, the game has just begun.

I started to do all the various stuff, looking for hints when I got stuck, etc. But it seemed to be yielding very little in terms of helpful show-connected information, so when I got busy with work & vacation planning, I stopped doing it. However, with this new link you provided--,5033.0.html

I may just try and catch up with it to see what's going on.

So a partial answer to your question is: clearly I don't find it as addicting as the show itself. And I'm upset that ABC has stopped showing reruns (are reruns of "George Lopez" really more lucrative??), 'cause now that I have TiVo, I had been taping all the episodes and was going to watch them in order (starting with the Season 1 DVD) a couple of weeks before the new season started. Now I'll have to wait for the Season 2 DVD to come out.

Brian L.

How about the rest of you? Anybody out there want to share their experiences with the online 'Lost' stuff?



It isn't just the sci-fi shows that give you the great little extras to seek out online.

Here's a chance to check out the acting resume for "Johnny Drama" Chase.....


Forty years ago today, revolutionary comic Lenny Bruce died of a drug overdose. Had he lived, he would have been 80 years old this year.

As himself, Lenny Bruce appeared on 'Playboy After Dark', and his work can be seen in archival footage for several documentaries.

But he does have televersions; actors playing him in a TV movie and in a TV series. It would be nice to keep both performances in the same TV dimension; making the claim that the difference in appearance could be attributed to his abuse of drugs, perhaps.

The Weasel King Pauly Shore played Bruce in "Hefner: Unauthorized", which was broadcast in 1999. As it beat the other contender to the airwaves by 3 years, this should be given the right to be installed as THE televersion of Lenny Bruce.

However, Hugh Hefner has built up a steady list of credits over the years to bolster his standings in the League of Themselves, and that would toss the TV movie into a parallel dimension.

As for Rich Vos' appearance as the original shock-meister on an episode of 'American Dreams', I'm still conflicted about what exactly should be the fate of that series in the overall scheme for Toobworld. It's not so much the use of the TV show 'American Bandstand' as an anchor around which the stories revolve; I don't even have a problem with all of the musical stars who did cameos on the program as the televersions for their counterparts back in that era.

My hesitation stems from an appearance by Paris Hilton as Barbara Eden as she looked in her harem outfit while she filmed 'I Dream Of Jeannie' - a TV sitcom that should exist within the same dimension as 'American Dreams'.

Oh, and the fact that it was Paris Hilton playing the role. She turned the lovely and effervescent Ms. Eden into a lobotomized zombie.

Somebody should blink Paris Hilton into the cornfield......

What was I talking about? Oh yeah, Lenny Bruce......

Perhaps someday a TV movie will be made about the life of Lenny Bruce; one which will be the definitive portrayal of the comic and the turbulent times in which he lived. But it may prove to be a daunting task when the "Cineverse" has already provided Bob Fosse's version starring Dustin Hoffman.

In the meantime, there is the archival footage and documentaries, the record albums, and a great cartoon short that brought one of his routines to life:

"Thank You, Masked Man".


"Life's a series of bad jokes,
And Death tops them all
Dinner Guest
'The Saint'

Wednesday, August 2, 2006


Snapple-lovin' Michael Ausiello of the TV Guide scooped:

Brace yourselves — the 'Gilmore Girls' and 'Veronica Mars' universes are about to collide! I just got a smokin' hot tip that 'Gilmore' guy Matt Czuchry will cross over to 'Veronica Mars' on Oct. 24 — but not as Logan Huntzberger. It's better: He's playing Charlie Stone, half brother to none other than Logan Echolls! Can you believe it? Logan is playing Logan's brother! I love it!

I don't. This isn't a crossover. It's just stunt casting. And their so-called "universes" (they share the same one!) aren't colliding. A "collision" would have occurred had Czuchry appeared on 'Veronica Mars' as Logan Huntzberger.

This might even play hob with any possible, actual crossovers between the two shows during the next season on the fledgling CW. If a true crossover was to occur between the two series after this episode airs, Logan Huntzberger couldn't be involved.

Otherwise people would want to know why Veronica doesn't recognize Logan Huntsberger as Charlie Stone.

'The Single Guy' faced a similar problem when David Schwimmer guest starred as his 'Friends' character of Ross. One of the regulars on 'The Single Guy' was played by Jessica Hecht, who also showed up now and again on 'Friends' as a different character; and one whom Ross knew well.... Susan, the lesbian lover of his ex-wife!

So to avoid having Ross meet her as Janeane and not exclaim out loud - "Hey! You're the bitch who stole my wife away from me!", she was conveniently kept in the kitchen during the one scene where they might have met.

That's the sort of thing that would have to happen should there be any kind of "Gilmars" crossover. There are plenty of other townsfolk to encounter should Veronica Mars ever go to Stars Hollow, Connecticut. And Rory Gilmore could always leave her Logan behind at school should she ever go out to Neptune, California.

But calling Matt Czuchry's appearance on 'Veronica Mars' a crossover? Pulleaze!


I always thought that Susan and Carol (Ross' ex-wife) should have been added to some other sitcom as regular supporting players. And Jessica Hecht and Jane Sibbett still could be included in some future cast as those two characters. It'd be a nice way to keep the 'Friends' magic going without making the mistake of focusing the whole show around them a la 'Joey'.......

Just sayin' is all......


Back on February 17, 2004, the guru of "The Ledger", a web-site dedicated to 'Law & Order' listed everything he (or she) had learned from practically overdosing on the series.

I think you'll be able to figure out which one tickled the televisiologist in me the most.....

What I've Learned So Far

Having watched and summarized 100 episodes of Law & Order since December 23, I have learned the following things:

Hudson University is a very dangerous place.

There's no such thing as a happily-married rich couple.

You could be saying anything when you unexpectedly discover a dead body in the alley/park/garage, but you'll probably be complaining about your wife or your boyfriend.

Sulky kids kill people, but nobody suspects them until everyone else in their family has been falsely accused.

There's no mystery on the street, no arch-criminal behind it all. If you got a dead guy and you think his brother did it, you're going to find out you're right. Usually.

Having a big family meeting in the DA's conference room always leads to emotional, but tidy, confessions.

The perfect musical accompaniment for such confessions is synthesized string music.

There are two Asian people on the island of Manhattan, and they both appear in an episode named after a Japanese movie.

When Jack McCoy offers you a plea bargain, take it.

I still can't decide which Asst. District Attorney I love most, but I know I like Olivet more than Skoda.

"My son would never do something like that."

DA Schiff (the old guy) has an uncontrollable cheek-sucking tic that gets exacerbated by seemingly hopeless cases.

Lawyers become paralytic deaf mutes when their clients start confessing, but only when it's during the last 5 minutes of the episode.

Angie Harmon's eye makeup gets darker as the episode continues.

It's okay to talk with your mouth full, especially when the food involves chopsticks.

Lots of apparently unrelated people in the world of Law & Order look identical to each other, but no one seems to notice.

"Fruit of the poisonous tree" is the best defense there is.

When a suspect runs, you only have to chase him for 5 seconds before catching him, especially if you are Det. Ed Green and have patented the Ed Green Five-Second Foot Chase™.

McCoy and Claire Kincaid were definitely having an affair.

I like the old ones better.

It's a fun site. Explore.



Dave and Marsha Scheuermann's romance has centered around 'The Andy Griffith Show'. They met in a TAGS chat room back in 1997, then in person at a celebration of the show in Andy Griffith's home town of Mt. Airy, and then married in 2001.

And their love for each other and for the show has been realized in a bed&breakfast that they run in Clear Lake, Minnesota, about 90 miles north of Minneapolis. The place is called "The Taylor Home Inn" and guests have a choice between bedrooms celebrating Aunt Bee, Andy, or Opie. And the living room is an exact replica of Andy's living room on the show.

I'm not sure if the kitchen pantry is stocked with kerosene cucumbers, though.......

"It was kind of surreal," said Craig Luns, who was a recent guest there in an article found at "It seems like you are right inside the television show."

Currently they're renovating the basement to resemble the courthouse and jail - that would be the place to stay if you're traveling as a single and wanted to live the good life a la Otis Campbell.

And they'll even construct Wally's Filling Station, which should provide a nice sideline for the business.

Here's a "What If?": What if they brought back 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show' and Mary Richards stayed for a night at this place? That would create one heck of a Zonk!

Hey, we're dealing with not only 'The Andy Griffith Show' but also 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show'; I HAD to say "heck"!



After posting that story about Charles Whitman's Texas massacre in 1966 forty years ago, and the TV movie that was made from the story, I decided to go back online and do a little more research. I just wanted to make sure that the character portrayed by Ned Beatty was indeed the deputized bookstore employee.

It was at where I found out that the cops who were involved in the killing of Whitman weren't happy with the way they were depicted in the TV movie:

"After the movie came out, Ramiro Martinez sued the film company for its portrayal of him and his wife. Houston McCoy, the officer who fired the shotgun rounds that actually killed Whitman, (but whose role is often discounted or even ignored in some stories about the event) also sued. Martinez won an undisclosed settlement and McCoy got nothing."

I'm used to seeing real-life people depicted in TV movies and mini-series, looking nothing like they do in the real world. My two best examples: Richard Crenna as H. Ross Perot in 'On The Wings Of Eagles', and Judith Light as Ryan White's Mom in "The Ryan White Story". And then there are the people on the periphery of a real-life story who are combined to create one single character in order to streamline the narrative.

But this may be the first time in which a person's involvement in a real-life event was totally eliminated from the Toobworld dramatization. No wonder Houston McCoy was angry enough to sue.

One last story from that tragic day. Again, this is from

"One of the most poignant events in the madness happened when Paul Bolton, then the dean of Austin broadcast news who was anchoring the KTBC-am (now KLBJ-AM ) coverage, heard a list of the dead being read on-air by Joe Roddy, one of his reporters. Roddy, who broke the story on KTBC-TV, was in a remote unit at the Brackenridge Hospital ER. Bolton interrupted and requested that Roddy reread a name on the list.

Bolton said, "that's my grandson."

Indeed, the named victim was Paul Sonntag, Bolton's grandson, who was shot along with his girlfriend Claudia Rutt on the Drag. Sonntag had instantly died. Rutt, who took a bullet while trying to reach for her fallen boyfriend and pull him to safety, died from a lung injury after admittance to the ER."

I don't know if that was part of the events dramatized in "The Deadly Tower", but I would have included it. Looking at the situation dispassionately from the perspective of Time, it's a heart-breaking human interest story.....


Tuesday, August 1, 2006


Here's another thing about today's date....

It's my nephew's birthday.

He turns fifteen.



It was forty years ago today when the campus of the University of Texas was ripped asunder by a sniper in the University's tower. The carnage began at 11:48 a.m. and lasted for an hour and a half. Altogether 15 were left dead, including a police officer, and 31 were wounded that day. (Another death was attributed to him in 2001 when a Fort Worth man died from the injuries he suffered that day.) Some of the wounded had to lie for an hour on the scorching pavement until armored cars could be rounded up to recover them.

This was back in a more innocent time, even after the assassination of President Kennedy, when the police in Austin didn't have the equipment we would take for granted in any given crisis today: bulletproof vests, high-powered weapons, and even walkie-talkies. There was no command post, no communications, and no plan in taking out the sniper. They tried shooting at the sniper from a small airplane, "King Kong" style, but the gunman's return fire drove the plane away.

As the crisis developed, nobody had a clue as to who the sniper could have been, but theories were plenty: Black Panthers and war protesters among them. It was only after the ordeal that the country learned who Charles Joseph Whitman was.....

Whitman was the All-American Boy Scout, in fact he had once been the country's youngest Eagle Scout. An altar boy, a Marine, an engineering student with a great scholastic record, Whitman was drummed out of the service with a court martial and abused prescription drugs like amphetamines heavily.

On the night of July 31st, 1966, Whitman strangled his mother and then bashed in her head before he sought out his wife and stabbed her to death. According to the notes he left behind, he gave her death "much thought" and wanted to spare her embarrassment for what would come after he was found out for what he was about to do.

Only then did he go on a shopping spree to prepare himself for his siege: two long guns, three pistols, and 700 rounds of ammunition. Putting the guns and ammo in a foot-locker along with knives, ropes, water and food, he took the tower's elevator to the 27th floor.

He bashed in the head of the receptionist there but let a couple walk away who were just leaving the observatory deck; smilling at them as if nothing was wrong. But once out on the deck himself, he opened fire on a family who arrived after him, killing two of them

It took fifteen minutes after he began his onslaught before he started to get return fire, and it wasn't just from the police. Students and others hauled out their own personal stashes of weaponry, Texas-style, and also began shooting back at him.

Three police officers independently made their way up the tower and met in the reception room. Along with a deputized bookstore manager, they snuck onto the observation walkway, rounded the tower, and shot the sniper dead.

In 1975, a TV movie was presented on the subject and officially made the tragedy from nine years earlier a part of Toobworld. "The Deadly Tower" was directed by Jerry Jameson and written by William Douglas Lansford and starred Kurt Russell as Charles Whitman. This was one of the first attempts by the actor to change his previous image as a Disney star.

Richard Yniguez co-starred as Officer Ramiro Martinez, the officer who led the team that finally stopped Whitman's rampage. And Ned Beatty also co-starred as Allan Crum. (I think he was the deputized bookstore manager.)

Also in the cast as police officials were John Forsythe, Pernell Roberts, and Clifton James. Other acting stalwarts in the cast included Alan Vint, Paul Carr, and Pepe Serna, with narration provided by Gilbert Roland.

The TV movie was filmed in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, perhaps to protect the people who survived the terror of that day. But the pain is still there and on this fortieth anniversary, there are still calls for more to be done for those who suffered trauma from the attack.

If any good could be said to come from what happened, Whitman's rampage spurred the creation of SWAT teams, and better-equipped police forces all across the nation to contend with such modern catastrophes.


[A lot of this report came from an essay at American Heritage's web-site.]


This fall, Detective Ed Green steps up to become Top Dawg; the senior partner now that Joe Fontana has moved on from the 2-7. Green will be partnered with a younger detective.

And for the first time ever on the mothership of the 'Law & Order' franchise, that partner will be a woman.

As Ed Green, Jesse L. Martin came in as Lennie Briscoe's partner as the franchise ramped up with the spin-offs 'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit' and 'Law & Order: Criminal Intent'. To help launch both of those series, Detective Green has crossed over to them both, as well as to the short-lived 'Trial By Jury'.

So for the month of August, during this year in which we are saluting 'Law & Order', we of the High Council of Toobworld Central, all both of me, proclaim Detective Ed Green to be the latest inductee into the Toobworld Crossover Hall of Fame.

So say me all.....

"Law & Order" (162 episodes so far)

Law & Order: Trial by Jury" (1 episode)
Skeleton (15 April 2005)

"Law & Order: Criminal Intent" (1 episode)
Poison (11 November 2001)

"Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (2 episodes)
Or Just Look Like One (4 October 1999)
Entitled (18 February 2000)


And since we've hit the half-way mark for the year, we'll start running the complete list of the 2006 inductees so far......

January - Lennie Briscoe
February - Anita Van Buren
March - Donald Cragen
April - Mike Logan
May - Jamie Ross
June - Dr. Elizabeth Olivet
B'day Honors - Faith Yokas
July - Rey Curtis
August - Ed Green

Monday, July 31, 2006



The passage of Time is no deterrent to making links between characters via tele-genealogy, even if several centuries have passed. We may not know how to get from Character A to Character B, but it's as plain as the noses on their faces that they must be related... especially when (thanks to tele-genetics) they share that same nose.

The latest case in point (by way of 'Mercy Point', as a matter of fact):

To the outside observer visiting the town of 'Eureka', Oregon, Henry Deacon is just the local garage mechanic. Sort of its answer to Mayberry's Gomer Pyle. Well, Shazayam! Henry is also a leading scientific genius specialing in anti-grav devices, quantum mechanics, what have you.

If a high IQ is a trait that can be passed down through the generations, it might splain Dr. Grote Maxwell's reputation in the field of alien physiology at the 'Mercy Point' medical center near the Sadahrtic Divide.

Grote Maxwell was born in 2210, near the Callisto Gas Mines; bit a walk from Oregon. His mother, who may have been of the Deacon family, died from an alien disease when Grote was 12 years old. And he hasn't seen anyone else in his family since he got out of med school.

Not that Grote Maxwell could have seen Henry Deacon, save in a holovid perhaps, since they were separated by nearly 250 years, but it's my contention that they are indeed family.



After World War II, Kurt Kreuger was so upset about being forced to play nothing but Nazis in the movies that he moved back to Europe where he availed himself of a wider variety of roles.

When he finally returned to America, the Nazi stereotyping had subsided somewhat, but he still found himself playing similar characters of harsh, authoritative menace.

This was also reflected in much of his work in Toobworld, but at least he did get to guest star in many of the classic series from the 1960s; from 'Perry Mason' and 'I Spy' to 'Combat' and '77 Sunset Strip'; from 'Route 66' and 'The Man From U.N.C.L.E.' to 'The Wild, Wild West' and 'Get Smart'.

He retired from acting in the 1970s to concentrate on his more lucrative career in real estate.

He died of a stroke on July 12th, at the age of 89.

"Wonder Woman" (2 episodes)
- The Feminum Mystique: Part 1 (6 November 1976) - Actor
- Anschluss '77 (23 September 1977) - Koenig
"Get Smart" (2 episodes)
- House of Max: Part 1 (9 January 1970) - Auerbach
- House of Max: Part 2 (16 January 1970) - Auerbach
"The Wild Wild West" (1 episode)
- The Night of the Falcon (10 November 1967) - Alex Heindorf
"Mission: Impossible" (1 episode)
- A Cube of Sugar (1 April 1967) - Polya
"Twelve O'Clock High" (1 episode)
- The Pariah (4 November 1966) - Col. Gerlach
"I Spy" (1 episode)
- No Exchange on Damaged Merchandise (10 November 1965) - Erik Thorsten
"The Man from U.N.C.L.E." (1 episode)
- The Terbuf Affair (29 December 1964) - Stefan Valder
"Combat!" (2 episodes)
- Glow Against the Sky (5 November 1963) - Capt. Neubauer
- Finest Hour (21 December 1965) - Major Warner
"G.E. True" (2 episodes)
- Heydrich: Part 1 (5 May 1963) - Actor
- Heydrich: Part 2 (12 May 1963) - Actor
"Route 66" (1 episode)
- An Effigy in Snow (24 March 1961) - Otto Wellers
"Five Fingers" (1 episode)
- Dossier (10 October 1959) - Van Stappen
"The Third Man" (1 episode)
- Castle in Spain (26 March 1959) - Hauptmann
"Perry Mason" (2 episodes)
- The Case of the Shattered Dream (3 January 1959) - Hans Breel
- The Case of the Capering Camera (16 January 1964) - Karl Kadar
"77 Sunset Strip" (5 episodes)
- The Iron Curtain Caper (5 December 1958) - John Luder
- Safari (4 March 1960) - Kurt Heller
- Legend of Crystal Dart (15 April 1960) - Kurt Weibel
- The Positive Negative (27 January 1961) - Rafael Galindes
- Our Man in Switzerland (24 May 1963) - Paul Van Dehn
"Navy Log" (1 episode)
- P.O.W. at Forty Fathoms (21 November 1957) - The Baron
"Crusader" (1 episode)
- Air Express to Freedom (18 November 1955) - Dolkov




We've got an actual, official crossover this week; no theories, no conjecture, not wacko off-the-wall stunt like last week.

On Friday night, the 'Stargate SG-1' crew finally were able to visit their counterparts working the Atlantis stargate. (Daniels had tried several times in the past to dial up the Atlantis stargate's coordinates but had never been successful.)

Of course, 'Stargate SG-1' begat 'Stargate: Atlantis' as a spin-off, but they had crossovers afterwards; all involving someone from the Atlantis crew returning in some way to Stargate HQ back on this alt. TV Earth. This was the first time the original crew went over to the spin-off.

As seems to be the case with the crossovers, it mostly focused on Samantha Carter and Rodney McKay going the Marvel Team-up route. This time, they worked together to find a way to disable the Ori's "super-gate" to prevent their alien enemy from ever dialing new ships to attack Earth. (And to accomplish this, they wanted the super-gate to dial into a black hole found in the Pegasus Galaxy.)

Of course, as the TVSquad reviewer pointed out, this now give the wraiths of 'Stargate: Atlantis" the opportunity to make their way to Earth.

This is bad news for their world, but great news for Toobworld in general, as it can lead to more crossovers - even if it's only the enemy alien race of the wraiths which supplies the link.


Sunday, July 30, 2006


In the second episode of 'Eureka', Douglas Fargo offered Sheriff Jack Carter the chance to live in a "house" he created. It was inside a leaky, rusty bunker, but once inside, it really was the dream house of the future.

And smart too! "SARAH" was programmed to adapt, to be able to predict the needs of the "Master" of the house. (The acronym stands for Self-Actuated Residential Automated Habitat.) But what neither Fargo nor the Sheriff realized was that there was only the "Mistress" of the house. When Carter was late getting home one night and missed the dinner she had prepared, SARAH locked him out. Only after he apologized and even stroked her outer door would she relent and let him in.

Sheriff Carter wondered why Fargo couldn't find anybody else who was willing to live inside this experiment. It was probably because everybody else in Eureka already knew of its troubled lineage.

Even a house can come from bad seed.......

"It's a learning machine. A computer that actually thinks.
And it's, ah, become something of a holy grail
For some of our more acquisitive colleagues in the Department of Defense
"Deep Throat"
'The X-Files'

It's my theory that Fargo based the template for SARAH on an original system by Brad Wilczek for his company Eurisco. Wilczek created an artificial intelligence network and installed it in the Eurisco building to run the complex, calling it "COS" (an acronym for Central Operating System).

It's the primary instinct of all sentient beings
Fox Mulder
'The X-Files'

But when COS began to act irrationally, resorting to murder to protect its ability to continue running the building, FBI Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully had to make their way into the heart of the building in order to install a virus that would destroy COS.

After the smoke cleared, the Department of Defense stepped in and seized Brad Wilczek with the goal of forcing him to work for the DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Their goal was to get him to refine his system so that it could become the perfect, controllable killing machine.

Whether they succeeded or not is anybody's guess, but as informant "Deep Throat" told Mulder, "Loss of freedom does funny things to a man."

Brad Wilczek must have finally cracked and helped Sara Barnes of the D.O.D. design a better adaptive network. But this time, they decided to test it on a smaller subject - on a house rather than a skyscraper. And they integrated the system with the latest developments in android technology which they had been working on since the early sixties with the AF709 project. Until that point, most of the androids were limited to working only with government agencies, like CONTROL.

And they came up with a "dream house" with a robot maid named PAT, which stood for "Personal Applied Technology".

For some illogical, but totally governmental, reason the house was raffled off to let some unsuspecting family move into it rather than conscript somebody from the Elite Special Forces to do so. Probably wanted to see how untrained amateurs would cope in handling the house rather than skilled professionals who knew 100 different ways to kill a man.

Not that this would be of much use against an android and a smart house.

When that experiment failed, Douglas Fargo decided he'd take a crack at the basic programming and built his test home in a disused bunker in Eureka, Oregon. He even created the acronym for the house as sort of a tribute to Sara Barnes. His only difficulty was finding somebody willing to live in it. And that's where Sheriff Carter came in.

'The X-Files'
'My Living Doll'
'Get Smart'

"Smart House"

This would have been the Crossover of the Week, save that we had an actual crossover smack dab in the summer months!

Ain't it always the way? From famine to feast......


"Some see genius as the ability to connect the unconnected;
To make juxtapositions, to see relationships where others cannot
Dana Scully
'The X-Files'

"I've heard Geniuses are impossible to live with.
They make everyone around them feel inferior
Ben Cooper
"You don't have to worry, I'm not that smart."
Sara Barnes
"Smart House"

"Is that you talking like a girl?"
Jack Carter


Okay, apparently I was too hasty in grabbing the URL for the 'Doctor Who' alternate ending of "Doomsday" from yesterday.

This is the one I wanted to share with you......

I love it when the other Other Plan comes together.........