Speaking of the latest episode of 'Psych' ("And Down The Stretch It's Murder").....
There were plenty of Zonks throughout the show, those nasty references to other TV shows as TV shows when they should all be sharing the same TV universe. There were Zonks relating to 'CHiPs', 'Miami Vice' (and its stars Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas), 'The Land Of The Lost' and to Mr. Furley of 'Three's Company'.
Most of these could be defused, but the rationales could be a bit flimsy.
Let's start with 'CHiPs' - Shaun revealed that as a kid he raced home after school every day in order to watch the reruns on TV. And one particular day he definitely had to be home in time because it was going to be about the big truck crash on the highway. (But as Gus pointed out, that happened in just about every episode!)
This could work and still keep the idea that 'Psych' and 'CHiPs' share the same dimension viable. 'CHiPs' stands for "California Highway Patrols" and so even as an acronym it's somewhat generic. The 'CHiPs' watched by Shaun and Gus might not be the same show we watched back in the mid-1970s. It could have been a reality show like 'Wildest Police Chases' or a precursor to 'Cops'.
Gus and Shaun never mentioned Ponch and Jon, so we can assume their 'CHiPs' had nothing to do with those two officers who would be real people in their world.
'Miami Vice' - This one was a lot tougher, as not only was the show cited, but the pictures of Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas as Crockett and Tubbs were displayed. Added to that was the fact that Gus wanted to be Philip Michael Thomas when he was a kid. (At least according to Shaun, but Gus didn't dispute that.)
I watched the episode twice last Friday night (missed most of the first broadcast due to packing - vacation was ending), but I can't verify now that the name of the show was ever cited. And I'm fairly certain that the characters were ever named as Crockett and Tubbs; it was always Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas. So it could be that those two actors were appearing in an entirely different show that captured the imaginations of the boys back in the 1980s.
'The Land Of The Lost' - This one gets a little easier, even if Shaun did point out that his mention of "Chaka" was a reference to 'Land Of The Lost'.
I think by 2007, the story behind that family being trapped in that alternate dimension would have been known by everybody. And it could have been helped along by a TV dramatization with the same title. In fact, the remake that appeared on our TV screens in the 1990s can be seen either as a segment that makes up the TV dimension for remakes, or as the dramatization of the original story for the benefit of those living on Earth Prime-Time. Or it could be both!
'Three's Company' - The sitcom was never mentioned. Instead it was a reference to Mr. Furley and the clothing styles that might be found lurking in his closet. So it's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, that the Spencer family knew Ralph Furley in Santa Barbara before he moved to Santa Monica to manage the apartment complex for his brother. And if so, Shaun might have been exposed to the horrors that lay within Furley's closet.
Clothing-wise, that is. Perv.....