Saturday, November 25, 2006


Wilson White, the Big Kahuna from the Tunney Media Group, was hoping to expand his corporation's empire into Macao, one of two free enterprise zones in China. (Hong Kong is the other one.) This has been a running subplot in several episodes of 'Studio 60' so far in its first season on the air.

Until 1999, Macao was a colony of Portugal, and was known for its casinos. I guess in hopes to keep the transition to rule by the People's Republic of China smooth, the Chinese government let them basically keep running things as usual. Probably the same deal that was in place for Hong Kong.

Macao has played a role in Toobworld once before:

'Hawaiian Eye' - "Dead Ringer"
Tom Lopaka is hired to help a woman sneak an art object into Macao by impersonating her husband, not knowing that she murdered her husband and has the same plans for him.

I'm not saying it serves as a link between the two shows. That would be like saying 'Seinfeld' and 'NYPD Blue' have to be linked just because they both took place in New York City.

But it's always nice to know the history behind a real location as it is seen in Toobworld.....



Now that the election is over, we're free of the annoying mudslinging for another two years. (At least on the national level.)

But out of all the bile that was dredged up in the campaigns, (especially in the New Jersey governor's race and in Nancy Johnson's district in Connecticut), there was one ad that piqued the interest of this televisiologist.

Running for the Senate seat from Connecticut, hoping to dislodge Joe Lieberman, Ned Lamont had himself digitally inserted into the movie "Mr. Smith Goes To Washington" to replace Jimmy Stewart's character.

"This is supposed to be a government of the people. But is this a government our people really want? Rushing our troops off to war, trampling on our civil liberties, senators who rubber stamp these bad policies, and look the other way?

Heck, no. I’m going to be there to fight for the people of Connecticut. Not the special interests. And I’m going to be there to fight for a stronger and safer America. "

In this scenario, Joe Lieberman would be the Claude Rains character, I guess. Only as it turned out, he won re-election and Ned Lamont was sent back to tend to his cable holdings empire.

But what effect did this have on the televersion of Ned Lamont? It's like he teleported himself not only into the movie universe, but then transported back in time to the early 1940s.

Was he able to get back? Why was he imploring the US Senate with that message over sixty years before the actual election? Was he hoping to implant the urge to vote for him into the public consciousness to be passed down through the generations?

Naaaahhhh.... Too busy.

Here's what I think:

Ned Lamont - in the Real World - is a multi-millionaire who made his fortune in tele-communications. So in Toobworld, that would be the same, only he'd have holographic technology as part of his empire's holdings.
What we were seeing in the Toobworld version of his life was that he was in a holo-suite recreation of a scene from the movie. And he was using that opportunity to practice a speech he wanted to give to the people of Connecticut.

Maybe he was hoping the sensation of performing that speech in front of a crowd of powerful men might carry over to when he actually delivered it to a crowd of Nutmeggers.

Who knows what the reasoning might be? At least the use of a holographic program makes for a good splainin as to how a candidate from 2006 - as seen on TV - ended up in a movie from the 1940s.



Over at the LiveJournal for "Tommy Westphall's Mind" (see the link to the left), Vicki shared this trivia nugget:

"The 11/08 "The Woman in the Sands" episode of Bones has a reference to a prostitute who worked at the Tangiers hotel. Bingo. That's one of the fictional hotel casinos used in CSI."

As I said, it's trivial, but it's one of those little bolts that hold the TV Universe together. So we can say with conviction that 'Bones' and 'CSI' are definitely linked.

And it doesn't matter that the reason both of them probably used that name for a casino was because it was the site of all the action going down in the movie "Casino". It's a nice tip of the hat in-joke to Martin Scorsese's film.

As Westphallian head honcho Crossoverman said, it doesn't negate the link between 'CSI' and 'Bones'.



In the most recent episode of 'Veronica Mars', Keith Mars and his daughter were investigating the disappearance of Selma Hearst Rose. At one point, Veronica had to scale a wall and jump over to the other side.

As she made the jump and landed on the other side, Veronica simulated the sound effects heard whenever 'The Six Million Dollar Man' was put through his paces.

You know the sound. That dit-dit-dit-dit-dit-dit-dit-dit-dit-dit-etc.

There was no mention of the show; no mention of Steve Austin as an actual bionic man in Veronica's corner of the universe. So while there was no Zonk, there was no acknowledgment that both shows are in the same reality.

As such, there's not a really pressing need to address the potential for a Zonk. Veronica could have just been goofing around, trying to suggest to her Dad that the jump was no big deal.

Or it could be that she actually did know Steve Austin, and she knew that the sound was generated whenever he utilized his cybernetic powers.

Veronica had grown up around her Dad's work as the Sheriff of Neptune, California. Perhaps in his duties as Sheriff, Keith Mars had to work in conjunction with Steve Austin on a case. And in a scene that probably wouldn't have been broadcast even if this had been an episode of 'The Six Million Dollar Man', maybe Keith brought Steve home to meet his family and have dinner. And that would be when Veronica would have had the chance to see the cyborg in action.

Because you know, even as a youngster, Veronica Mars would never have felt shy about asking Steve Austin to strut his stuff.


Friday, November 24, 2006


If you do a Google image search for the terms "Studio 60" and "The West Wing" together, you'll find that "Bartlet 4 America" poster in the backstage dressing room that was seen in this past Monday's episode of 'Studio 60'.

I was going to add 'Studio 60' to the shows in the dimension of 'The West Wing'. There aren't that many; the major ones are 'Mr. Sterling' and 'Smallville'.

There is a slight hitch, however, to that idea. The great outside world of 'Studio 60' seems more in synch with our world than that of 'The West Wing'.

For instance, Tom Jeter's younger brother is in the service and is serving over in Afghanistan. Over in 'The West Wing', the major conflict for American troops was in the buffer zone between China and Russia. Before that, Equatorial Khundu. But the Bartlet administration never invaded Afghanistan to throw the Taliban out of power; they never went after Saddam Hussein in Iraq - if he was even in power in that dimension.

There may have been a 9/11 attack in 'The West Wing' dimension, but it's never been brought to the forefront of their agenda. Details were hazy in that special episode "Isaac And Ishmael", so it could be it was nothing on the par of what happened to us.

So I'll go along with Will's suggestion that the "Bartlet 4 America" poster was a prop.... until something else comes along to toss 'Studio 60' out of Toobworld proper.

But it could also be the real thing - just not a campaign tool for Jed Bartlet of 'The West Wing'. It could be for any politician named Bartlet.

Maybe it's Dr. Josiah Bartlet who lived in Boston and was seen in at least one episode of 'St. Elsewhere'. It wouldn't be the first time a physician entered the world of politics.

Just ask Bill Frist.




When Dr. Gregory 'House' was arrested, he started calling out for "Gomer Pyle" from his jail cell. His arresting officer came in and informed him that the name he was probably searching for was "Barney Fife". House admitted that it was tough keeping track of the idiot icons.

Sounds pretty much like a Zonk to me. Maybe one or the other of the two characters could have known about Gomer and Barney from a trip to, even an extended stay in, Mayberry, North Carolina. But it would be hard to believe that both these New Jerseyans had not only made the trek down South, but that they both got to know these "idiot icons".

And referring to them as "idiot icons" doesn't bode well, either.

If anybody out there does have a cool splainin that would account for both 'House' and Detective Tritter knowing two characters from 'The Andy Griffith Show', please feel free to share them with us here.




I suggested last week that it might be fun if all of the paper companies for each of the international remakes of 'The Office' were subsidiaries of the same global corporation.

So far, these companies include:

the Papiers Jennings branch in a Montreal suburb ('La Job')

Cogirep, a small company based in an industrial park near Paris ('Le Bureau')

Dunder-Mifflin, where the Scranton branch recently absorbed the Stamford branch. ('The Office' - USA version)

And the original:

Hogg-Wertham, located in Slough. ('The Office' - UK version)

'Stromburg' doesn't count, even though it's supposed to be the German version, because it takes place in an insurance company.

At any rate, it could be that NBC has already shown us the parent company that encompasses them all.

In Odessa, Texas, the Primatech Paper Company does manufacture and distribute paper products. However, the warehouse also serves as a front for whatever group to which HRG (Horn Rimmed Glasses) belongs. It is the warehouse where HRG brings the nascent heroes and has them read, boosted, and then mind-swiped.

Primatech - even its name suggests world domination in paper products!

One biz to rule them all.
One biz to find them.
One biz to bring them all
And then collate and bind them!



Although the Kelly Ripa/Clay Aiken/Rosie O'Donnell dust-up made for good Television, it's not great Toobworld - unless it gets referenced in a fictional sense on some sitcom or drama.

Unless it's already been taped, there may be a chance for that when Clay Aiken appears as himself in a Christmas episode of 'Days Of Our Lives'. Clay will be in Salem, where he'll give a private concert for two of the show's characters, Kayla and Steve.

Clay will sing "Everything I Have", a song from his new album which was released last month. His version of "O Holy Night" will also be featured in the 'Days' episode, which airs December 22nd.

If they hadn't taped it before the ruckus about his appearance on 'Live With Regis And Kelly', maybe they can work in a joking reference to it......


Thursday, November 23, 2006


Sometimes the soul of one TV character can theoretically be reborn as another TV character in a different series. For example, it's the Toobworld position that 'Dharma & Greg' were the reincarnations of Ross and Demelza 'Poldark'. And the Tooniverse Samantha and Darrin Stephens in the opening credits of 'Bewitched' existed in the Stone Age as camping companions to 'The Flintstones'.

We've got a new possibility to consider, a TV character who exists in Toobworld today but who may be reborn in the 52nd Century.

Per Kristin of E! Online:

"The Todd is still gay, reports Robert Maschio about his character, who turns out to be something like the PepĂ© Le Pew of prime time. "I say the Todd is not homosexual, he's not bisexual, he's trisexual—because he's willing to try anything. Or ATM, anything that moves."

This sounds as good a description as any of Captain Jack Harkness, the former 52nd Century Time Agent who teamed up with the Ninth Incarnation of the Gallifreyan Time Lord known as the Doctor.

Here's the interesting hitch - if they do share the same soul, both the Toddster and Captain Jack are currently existing in the same time period. Jack is at present in charge of Torchwood, located in Cardiff, Wales.

However, it's not the Cardiff, Wales, of the main Toobworld. There have been too many discrepancies in both the new version of 'Doctor Who' and its spin-off 'Torchwood' to keep it in the same dimension as the first eight incarnations of the Doctor. (Someday I hope we can think of the Doctor as being back in the main Toobworld, but I get the feeling that we'll have to wait for RTD to abdicate his throne....)

So for the time being, if Todd and Captain Jack are spiritually one, there's no fear that they'll ever come in contact with each other.

Who knows what would happen if that ever took place!

Aside from them sleeping with each other, that is....



It's not really what keeps Toobworld spinning, but what was up with the two technical glitches on 'The CBS Evening News with Katie Couric' this past Monday night?

Did the regular tech crew take off early for the Thanksgiving holiday?

I'm not a big fan of Katie's, but I did feel sorry while watching her stranded on the stage at the end of the newscast which ended five minutes early. She was stuck out there apparently for 87 seconds, but it felt like an eternity watching it.

I can only imagine how long it must have felt to her!



For most of its first season so far, I've had no problem with the idea of 'Studio 60' existing in Earth Prime-Time, the main Toobworld. Well, maybe except for the fact that those lousy comedy sketches could be considered genius writing par excellence.

This would be in contrast to Aaron Sorkin's last show, 'The West Wing', which had to be shunted off to its own dimension since their President was Jed Bartlet, and not Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, as it has been in the main Toobworld.

But that may have to change. Apparently, in one of the dressings rooms backstate at the inner 'Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip', a "Bartlet 4 America" poster was hanging on the wall.

I say "Apparently", because even though I saw the episode, I didn't notice it. And in this Luddite house where I'm spending Thanksgiving week, I can't record anything!

So for now, I may have to take it on faith that the poster did appear. And I'm not sure if the blogger who posted this report was spelling it correctly or not, but he had it as "Bartlett 4 America".

If that was truly how it was spelled, it could provide an out for Toobworld: President Josiah "Jed" Bartlet spelled his name with only one "t" at the end. Therefore, this "Bartlett" could be an entirely different politician and thus he could be in Earth Prime-Time rather than Earth Prime-Time/Jed.

And that would allow 'Studio 60' to remain in the main Toobworld... for better or worse.........


Wednesday, November 22, 2006


The man who embodied the image of "Hollywood Maverick", Robert Altman, has passed away. The director of such movie classics as "M*A*S*H", "Nashville", "The Player", "Gosford Park", and "The Long Goodbye" was 81 and was suffering from cancer.

Altman was a five-time Academy Award nominee for best director, most recently for 2001’s “Gosford Park,” and he finally won a lifetime achievement Oscar in 2006.

“No other filmmaker has gotten a better shake than I have,” Altman said while accepting the award. “I’m very fortunate in my career. I’ve never had to direct a film I didn’t choose or develop. My love for filmmaking has given me an entree to the world and to the human condition.”

Altman had one of the most distinctive styles among modern filmmakers. He often employed huge ensemble casts, encouraged improvisation and overlapping dialogue and filmed scenes in long tracking shots that would flit from character to character.

It was not until 1955 that he actually headed for Hollywood; he had gotten a call offering him a job directing an episode of the television series “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.” Over the next decade, he directed dozens of episodes of “Maverick,” “Lawman,” “Peter Gunn,” “Bonanza,” “Hawaiian Eye,” “Route 66,” “Combat!” and “Kraft Suspense Theater.”

The film 'M*A*S*H' spawned the long-running TV sitcom starring Alan Alda, a show Altman would refer to with distaste as “that series.” Unlike the social message of the film, the series was prompted by greed, Altman said.

“They made millions and millions of dollars by bringing an Asian war into Americans’ homes every Sunday night,” Altman said in 2001. “I thought that was the worst taste.”

Altman never minced words about reproaching Hollywood. After the Sept. 11 attacks, he said Hollywood served as a source of inspiration for the terrorists by making violent action movies that amounted to training films for such attacks.

“Nobody would have thought to commit an atrocity like that unless they’d seen it in a movie,” Altman said.

He directed the Broadway production of “Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean,” following it with a movie adaptation in 1982. Altman went back and forth from TV to theatrical films over the next decade.

He also did some fresh work for television, a medium he had reviled when he left it two decades earlier. In 1988, he directed a strong television adaptation of “The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial,” a stage play by Herman Wouk based on his novel “The Caine Mutiny.” The Altman version restored the class conflict and anti-Semitism that had been excised from the 1954 Hollywood treatment starring Humphrey Bogart.

I've looked over the list of TV show episodes directed by Altman and recognized only two episodes of his which I had seen. (I have seen the two 'Tanner' series.) One was "Bolt From The Blue" from 'Maverick'. The other was "Survival" from 'Combat'.

That episode of 'Combat' stays with me for the horrific ordeal of Sgt. Saunders' trek through the countryside and Pvt. Kelly's senseless death for a pair of boots.

Looking online, I found this about 'Survival' at a 'Combat' fan site:

When Vic Morrow received his emmy nomination for Outstanding Continued Performance by an Actor in a Series (Lead), he credited his performance in "Survival" for earning him that honor. Morrow delivers an outstanding performance, as mesmerizing and terrible as a roadside wreck that drivers can barely stand to view, yet cannot turn away from. To enhance the realism, Vic Morrow did extensive medical research on burns.

"Survival" is the zenith of Robert Altman's vision of Saunders as a living martyr to war. Altman heaped harrowing images on an already brutal script by John D.F. Black. The episode is uncompromising in its look at agony and despair, and flaunts a shocking grimness, rare even by today's television standards.

Altman offers up some powerful images in this episode, shots that linger in the mind long after viewing:

helpless mortals pulled through the dust and dirt, harnessed to the all-powerful symbol of war and destruction

a man writhing impotently in pain, bound and abandoned to flames

a young man struggling to put on boots, looking up into certain death: a completely pointless death, that didn't progress the plot but merely added another layer of despair and hopelessness

shot after shot of help and succor just out of reach — from the moonlit crossing of Saunders and the squad in the stream, to the agonizing nearness of a golden apple dancing beyond reach in the sunlight

I am glad this episode is part of 'Combat!' And equally glad that this was a departure from the usual fare. Altman's vision is rivetting for an episode or two. In the long run, however, I prefer Kennedy's and McEveety's vision of the show.

"We didn't have a script for it," remembers Altman. "We had the situation and how he got burned and separated. But then it was just working with Vic and figuring out the things a man does when he's out of his mind in pain. The surrendering to a dead German just happened. It seemed right." This was Robert Altman’s last work on Combat! "They didn't feel we should make this episode. I got fired over it."

Tanner on Tanner (2004) (TV)
"Gun" (1997) TV Series
"Tanner '88" (1988) (mini) TV Series

The Real McTeague (1993) (TV)
Black and Blue (1993) (TV)
McTeague (1992) (TV)
The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial (1988) (TV)

"Saturday Night Live"
- Episode #2.16 (12 March 1977) - (segment "Sissy's Roles")
- Walk in the Sky (15 July 1968)
"The Long, Hot Summer"
- The Long Hot Summer (1 January 1965)
"Kraft Suspense Theatre"
- The Long, Lost Life of Edward Smalley (12 December 1963)
- The Hunt (19 December 1963)
- Once Upon a Savage Knight
"The Gallant Men"
- Pilot (5 October 1962)
- Forgotten Front (2 October 1962)
- Rear Echelon Commandos (9 October 1962)
- Any Second Now (23 October 1962)
- Escape to Nowhere (20 November 1962)
- Cat and Mouse (4 December 1962)
- I Swear by Apollo (11 December 1962)
- The Prisoner (25 December 1962)
- The Volunteer (22 January 1963)
- Off Limits (19 February 1963)
- Survival (12 March 1963)
"Kraft Mystery Theater"
- In Close Pursuit (13 June 1962)
"Route 66"
- Some of the People, Some of the Time (1 December 1961)
"Bus Stop"
- The Covering Darkness (22 October 1961)
- Portrait of a Hero (29 October 1961)
- Accessory by Consent (19 November 1961)
- A Lion Walks Among Us (3 December 1961)
- ...And the Pursuit of Evil (17 December 1961)
- Summer Lightning (7 January 1962)
- Door Without a Key (4 March 1962)
- County General (18 March 1962)
"Surfside 6"
- Thieves Among Honor (30 January 1961)
- The Robbery (1 January 1961)
- Silent Thunder (10 December 1960)
- Bank Run (28 January 1961)
- The Duke (11 March 1961)
- The Rival (15 April 1961)
- The Secret (6 May 1961)
- The Dream Riders (20 May 1961)
- Sam Hill (3 June 1961)
- The Many Faces of Gideon Flinch (5 November 1961)
- Bolt from the Blue (27 November 1960)
"The Roaring 20's"
- The Prairie Flower (12 November 1960)
- Brother's Keeper (19 November 1960)
- White Carnation (3 December 1960)
- Dance Marathon (14 January 1961)
- Two a Day (4 February 1961)
- Right Off the Boat: Part 1 (13 May 1961)
- Right Off the Boat: Part 2 (20 May 1961)
- Royal Tour (3 June 1961)
- Standing Room Only (28 October 1961)
"The Gale Storm Show"
- It's Magic (17 March 1960)
"Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse"
- The Sound of Murder (1 January 1960)
- Apollo with a Gun (8 December 1959)
- The Highbinder (19 January 1960)
"Hawaiian Eye"
- Three Tickets to Lani (25 November 1959)
"U.S. Marshal"
- R.I.P. (6 June 1959)
- The Triple Cross (9 January 1960)
"The Millionaire" (6 episodes)
- The Pete Hopper Story (10 December 1958)
- Millionaire Alicia Osante (18 March 1959)
- Millionaire Henry Banning (1 April 1959)
- Millionaire Lorraine Daggett (29 September 1959)
- Millionaire Andrew C. Cooley (8 December 1959)
- Millionaire Jackson Greene (22 December 1959)
"Alfred Hitchcock Presents"
- The Young One (1 December 1957)
- Together (12 January 1958)
- Sitting Duck
- Two of a Kind
- The Black Maria
- In Ways Mysterious
- The Midnight Show
- The Perfect Crime
- The Unknown Soldier
- A Matter of Trust (6 April 1959)
- Guilty of Old Age (13 April 1959)
- Experiment X-74 (11 May 1959)
- The Challenge (1 June 1959)
- The Big Lie (8 June 1959)



When the FBI was interviewing a guy named Neil about the possibility that he might be a stalker, Neil looked at the one-way mirror and wondered if Mulder and Scully were behind the glass.

This is the second time in less than a week that Mulder and Scully were cited by characters in other TV shows. (See my take on the 'Las Vegas' reference.)

I think I made a reasonable argument for Delinda DeLine having known Dana Scully. But I don't get think there's any way for this guy Neil to have known either one of the two FBI agents. But he talked about Mulder and Scully as though he knew Agent Matt Flannery would know of them.

This could seem obvious, since Flannery was an FBI agent and Mulder and Scully used to be. But how many agents are there across the country? They can't possibly all know each other.

But Scully and Mulder had extraordinary reputations within the Bureau, so it's likely that Flannery knew of the two.

However, that still doesn't splain how Neil knew about them as well.

'The X-Files' went off the air in 2002, Scully and Mulder were on the run from the shadow government that really runs the show. Since then, who knows what's happened to them?

It could be that they were involved in an adventure that made the news all across the country; their names splashed across headline that even Neil would have noticed.

It didn't have to be something we in the Trueniverse would ever find out about. We'd have to depend upon it being mentioned in some other show, since their adventures as seen in 'The X-Files' are no longer broadcast. And even if it was the most earth-shattering of news stories to come along in Toobworld since the Canamids tried to make hummus out of humans, that doesn't mean it would have to be the topic of conversation among other TV characters.

There is precedence for this in Toobworld. The 1990s passed without any mention of the Eugenics Wars in any TV show except for those in the 'Star Trek' franchise. (Although they may have been mentioned by the equivalent here in the Real World, ethnic cleansing.)

And the televersions of Real World events also get the "benign neglect" treatment as well. This may seem unlikely in these days when almost every drama series on the air (and even some sitcoms) has made some kind of connection to the attacks of 9/11 (except for '100 Centre Street', strangely enough which was located just around the corner from "Ground Zero"). But there was a time when the biggest news stories of the day were invisible in Toobworld.

Even something that had as much impact on everybody's lives as Viet Nam here in our world was barely mentioned in the TV Universe. A few dramas, once the age of relevance set in (1969-71), dealt with the topic if it had some connection to their basic theme ('The Mod Squad', 'Then Came Bronson', surprisingly, one of the early episodes of 'The Twilight Zone'). But were there ever any kids from Mayberry drafted and shipped off to war? Certainly not Gomer Pyle, and he was in the Marine Corps. (For that matter, did the civil rights movement ever come to Mayberry?)

But for the most part, the Viet Nam war had no place in America's living rooms except during the dinnertime news.

So Mulder and Scully could have been involved in foiling the assassination of President Bush live on TV, and that doesn't mean it would get mentioned by the gang in 'The Office' of Dunder-Mifflin in Scranton, Pa.

So let's say there was a big story that made Mulder and Scully famous to the common man, where might it have been reported where Neil knew of it, but there was no way we could have learned of it.

Here are three options:

The best possible source would be the local papers, and since Neil lived in Los Angeles, that would mean the Trib. Even if 'Lou Grant' was no longer working at the L.A. Tribune, and Mrs. Pynchon and Charlie Hume more than likely have passed away, the paper would still be publishing.

The weekly TV news "magazine" show 'FYI', on which 'Murphy Brown' was the anchor, would have broadcast the story nationally. Neil could have seen mention of Mulder and Scully on that.

And although we hardly see anything of the comedy bits on 'Studio 60' (thankfully!), they may have done a sketch on whatever the two agents were involved in. At least it would have been good for a few jokes on the "News60" segment with Simon and Harriet. (Unlike the other examples where it would have occurred after their cancellations, it probably happened on a segment of the show before its parent show - also called 'Studio 60' - even debuted.)

A lot of blather over just a throwaway line, isn't it? Oh well. Just wanted to make sure that any future references to Mulder and Scully can be splained away.


"I just love Television so very much."
Kenneth the Page
'30 Rock'


Toobworld is global; it's not just the shows created in the United States and Great Britain.

And the same goes for the variations on Toobworld, like the Tooniverse and Skitlandia, the sketch comedy dimension. Sketch comedy routines come from all over the world, and Toobworld has lost someone who was making a contribution in that area over in Baghdad.

Comic Walid Hassan, known for his "Caricature" sketch show on the Sharkiya channel in Iraq, was killed by three bullets to the head on his way to work. He was the latest of dozens of broadcasters and journalists to be killed.

Hassan was famous for mocking everyone from the Iraqi government to U.S. forces to Shiite militias to Sunni insurgents.

"We feel we're all at risk," a journalist at Hassan's station said. "We all think of quitting the station."

Hassan's sister Nadia Hassan Ja'az said his death was incomprehensible. "Why did they want to kill him? He didn't hurt anyone," she told the Sharkiya channel.

"He has nothing to do with Sunni or Shiite; he doesn't recognize these things. He's just an actor defending Iraq, its people and his family," she said through tears.



I think the reason I remember the name of Bettye Ackerman from my readings of various TV books here at the Toobworld Central Library is because of that unique spelling of her first name. Ms. Ackerman was an actress who recently passed away at the age of 82 in her home state of South Carolina.

She had a lengthy career in Television as a guest star, but perhaps her most famous role, the one the New York Times pegged as her best-known, was as Dr. Maggie Graham. Maggie Graham was a recurring role on 'Ben Casey', in which she was the love interest for the surly young doctor. (In real life, Ms. Ackerman was married to the co-star, the late Sam Jaffe, who played Dr. Zorba, Ben Casey's mentor.)

Looking over her list of credits, there are several guest-starring roles which could be surmised to be Dr. Maggie Graham, but after she had gone on to marry somebody else once her relationship with Dr. Ben Casey fell through:

Dr. Michaels, 'Trapper John, M.D.'
Dr. Hamill, 'The Streets Of San Francisco'
Rita Claman, 'Mannix'
[If "Maggie" was short for "Margarita"...]

She also played a role in the first version of "The Strange World Of Horace Ford", which aired on 'Studio One' and starred Art Carney. (The better known version starred Pat Hingle and was broadcast as an episode of 'The Twilight Zone'.) In a departure for Toobworld policy, it is the second version that is part of Earth Prime-Time, while the first version is relegated to an alternate dimension.

"Return to Peyton Place" (1972) TV Series .... Constance MacKenzie #1 (1972)
"Bracken's World" (1969) TV Series .... Anne Frazer, Bracken's secretary

"The Waltons" .... Belle Becker (2 episodes, 1977-1981)
- The Revel
- The Achievement
"Medical Center" .... Nurse Marsh (2 episodes, 1969-1973)
- Question of Guilt (1973)
- 24 Hours (1969)
"Ben Casey" .... Dr. Maggie Graham (4 episodes, 1962-1963)
- La Vie, La Vie Interieure (1963)
- For I Will Plait thy Hair with Gold (1963)
- A Story to Be Softly Told (1962)
- Imagine a Long Bright Corridor (1962)

A Day for Thanks on Walton's Mountain (1982) (TV) .... Belle Tucker
Trouble in High Timber Country (1980) (TV) .... Mrs. Lomax
Doctors' Private Lives (1978) (TV) .... Sylvia
Heat of Anger (1972) (TV) .... Stella Galvin
... aka Fitzgerald and Pride

Murder or Mercy (1974) (TV) .... Nurse Cantelli
Companions in Nightmare (1968) (TV) .... Sara Nicholson

"St. Elsewhere" (1 episode, 1986)
- Lost Weekend
"Tales of the Unexpected" .... Ruby (1 episode, 1985)
- Nothin' Short of Highway Robbery
"Trapper John, M.D."
- Promises, Promises (1984) TV Episode .... Dr. Michaels
- Maybe Baby (1982) TV Episode .... Mrs. Bayard
"Double Trouble" .... The Judge (1 episode, 1984)
- Dueling Feet
"Dynasty" .... Katherine (2 episodes, 1982)
- Kirby
- The Will
"Falcon Crest" .... Elizabeth Bradbury (1 episode, 1982)
- For Love or Money
"240-Robert" .... Eileen Phillips (1 episode, 1979)
- Stuntman
"Police Woman" .... Helen Fletcher (1 episode, 1978)
- Good Old Uncle Ben
"Wonder Woman" .... Asclepia (1 episode, 1977)
- The Return of Wonder Woman
"CHiPs" .... Mrs. Burgess (1 episode)
- Undertow
"The Feather and Father Gang" (1 episode, 1977)
- Never Con a Killer
"Barnaby Jones"
- Renegade's Child (1976) TV Episode .... Mrs. Nesbitt
- Venus as in Fly Trap (1974) TV Episode .... Margery Kinner
"Police Story"
- Three Days to Thirty (1976) TV Episode .... Katherine Moran
- Glamour Boy (1974) TV Episode .... Martha Dunnhill
"Petrocelli" .... Ann Hendricks (1 episode, 1975)
- Too Many Alibis
"Harry O" .... Laureen Lister (1 episode, 1975)
- The Acolyte
"The Streets of San Francisco" .... Dr. Hamill (1 episode, 1975)
- Asylum
"The Rookies"
- Solomon's Dilemma (1975) TV Episode .... Judge
- Sound of Silence (1973) TV Episode .... Ellen Tabnor
- Run Scared (1974) TV Episode .... Sylvia Harris
- A Matter of Love and Death (1969) TV Episode .... Dr. Pat Manners
"Lucas Tanner" .... Francis Shaw (1 episode, 1974)
- By the Numbers
"Gunsmoke" .... Zisha Gorofsky (1 episode, 1973)
- This Golden Land
"The Sixth Sense" .... Helene (1 episode, 1972)
- Can a Dead Man Strike from the Grave? (1972)
Columbo: Blueprint for Murder (1972) (TV) .... Miss Sherman
"The F.B.I."
- Antennae of Death (1970) TV Episode .... Mary Binyon
- The Prey (1969) TV Episode .... Mrs. Kurland
- Homecoming (1968) TV Episode .... Annette Jurgens
"Mannix" .... Rita Claman (1 episode, 1969)
- Only Giants Can Play
"Bonanza" .... Estelle Dawson (1 episode, 1967)
- Second Chance
"Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre" .... Dorothy Reynolds (1 episode, 1967)
- Verdict for Terror
"Perry Mason"
- The Case of the Positive Negative (1966) TV Episode .... Laura Brandon
- The Case of the Thermal Thief (1965) TV Episode .... Amy Reid
"Breaking Point" .... Eunice Osment (1 episode, 1964)
- Better Than a Dead Lion
"Alcoa Premiere"
- Chain Reaction (1963) TV Episode .... Dorothy Swift
- The Jail (1962) TV Episode .... Ellen
"The Alfred Hitchcock Hour" .... Lorna Dickson (1 episode, 1962)
- The Tender Poisoner
"Alfred Hitchcock Presents" .... Mrs. Inkel (1 episode, 1959)
- Specialty of the House
"Studio One" .... Betty (1 episode, 1955)
- The Incredible World of Horace Ford



My plan was to take a week off from bloggin' Toobworld-related matters (although I've got quite a backlog of stuff for comment) so that I could work on my Toobworld novel.

However, there's been a glitch to that plan due to technical errors. So until such time - if any! - when I can straighten that out, I'll be clearing out this logjam of material.

Back to the Blogcave!