Wednesday, July 23, 2008


For fans of TV in-jokes, 'The Middleman' is proving to be a rich source for those little insider references which TV columnist David Bianculli calls "Extras". And on top of that, the episodes seem to have themes when it comes to these in-jokes. One week they did a plethora (Mike Silletti's Word For The Day) of "Back To The Future" references; last week, the in-jokes mostly revolved around the classic rock group The Zombies (because that was the basic subject of the episode).

In this week's episode, "The Boy Band Superfan Interrogation", it was "Raiders Of The Lost Ark" which held supreme with the in-jokes. For the most part, these in-jokes took the form of aliases: the magician Rene and his lovely assistant Marion, Brody and Forrestal, and Ravenwood and Jones.

These can be eliminated as Zonks, which can be death-blows to the integrity of the Toobworld mosaic's inner reality, by the splainin that they were just random names served up from their massive supply of identi-cards for any given situation.

But then there was the visit to a professor at Henry Jones University......

Actually, my first reaction was to dredge up the late great character actor in my memory banks. And then I remembered that this is the true name for Indiana Jones, and as such is an established character not only in the movie universe (and novels and comic books), but also in Toobworld as well with 'The Indiana Jones Chronicles'.

And even so, there's no need to worry about Zonks.

Why not have an entire university named after such a preeminent archaeologist? Why should just the religious leaders get schools named after them? Especially after all the artifacts Professor Jones brought back which could justify such an honor should he choose to house them there. They would certainly garner quite a bit of publicity for the school.

So I think not only is there no Zonk involved in visiting the Henry Jones University, but it makes for a valid, yet unofficial, link to 'The Indiana Jones Chronicles'!

Toby OB

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