Saturday, May 17, 2008


Back in October of 2007, a forum commenter named "Horsenbuggy" made this observation about 'The Office':

I did think it was odd that the camera crew was at the Inn with Jim and Pam. I don't know that we've ever been let in on their "rules." Do they follow them all the time (even when Jim went to Connecticut) and only "show" the interesting footage, which just happens to mostly be office stuff?

I was thinking about how the documentary crew seemed to take a break over the summer so that we had to be "caught up" on what everyone had done during that time. It would make sense to me if, instead of this being a crew making one documentary, it [was] a class at a local college. Dunder-Mifflin (or maybe just Michael) made an agreement with the school that if they would buy paper from them, their office could be a continuous classroom for Reality TV filmmakers. So each semester or quarter, it's a different crew, but they just keep shooting and shooting and shooting. The footage will never air, so none of the office people gain any celebrity status. But the students learn how to follow people around and edit stories together.

I still believe that 'The Office' is being aired in Toobworld as a documentary series in the same vein as that one about the small airline at a Southwestern airport. This way, whenever 'The Office' is cited by characters on some other show, then we know it's because they've been watching the show.

But I like the way "Horsenbuggy" thinks, very televisiological!

In a related matter, Dr. Zack Addy of 'Bones' recently had a TMI moment when he revealed what happened to his urine when he was visiting his cousins on their beet farm and ate too much of the crop.

Could it be that Zack is related to the Schrutes of Pennsylvania?

Beets me.

Sorry about that, Chief.....

Toby OB

"I didn't think there'd be this much manure."
Jim Halpert
'The Office'


Two famous people appeared as themselves in Toobworld soap operas recently: bazillionaire Warren Buffett showed up in Pine Valley and Kathy Hilton arrived in Genoa City.Buffett was on 'All My Children' when Erica landed in prison. He had met her previously and she hoped he'd be able to get her out of jail. I think he got so spooked by their conversation that he was happy to take a call from Bill Gates as a diversionary escape.

Kathy Hilton appeared on 'The Young & The Restless', bringing along a cover model, Sam Creswell, for her friend Jack Abbott to use for "Restless Style". (Sam went to school with Kathy's daughter Paris, and now they appear in the gossip columns together.)

Toby OB

Friday, May 16, 2008


In the second series premiere for 'Life On Mars', Sam Tyler tried to convince Eve to leave her lover/boss before it was too late. Sam knew that in thirty years she would finally be murdered by him.

In the background there were flyers for the 1972 production of 'Peter Pan' at the Palace Manchester. Peter Pan was played by the famous singer Lulu and Captain Hook was portrayed by Anthony Sharpe. The production of J.M. Barrie's classic broke all the box office records at that time, which had stood for sixty years!

Toby OB

Thursday, May 15, 2008


TV series from other countries are remade all the time in the United States. Most of them come from Great Britain, but 'Ugly Betty' has its roots in South America and that's turning into a phenom spanning the globe.

And now shows from Israel are getting the American makeover, starting with 'In Treatment' on HBO, which was based on a show called 'Betipul' (or 'B'Tippul'). CBS announced 'The Ex-List' as one of its new series for the Fall, which is based on the Israeli 'Mythological Ex'.

In the past, enough revisions would be made so that the new versions were not carbon copies of the originals. We got Archie Bunker instead of a new Alf Garnett; among the tourist hotels one could visit in the USA are 'Snavely Manor', 'Amanda's By The Sea' and the Whispering Pines (which should have been called The House of 'Payne'), and none of them are in conflict with their inspiration, 'Fawlty Towers'.

For the most part, Toobworld can absorb all of these international remakes and house them in Earth Prime-Time, the main TV dimension. Even all of the incarnations of 'Ugly Betty' - save for the cartoon version of her younger self; that goes to the Tooniverse - can remain in the same Toobworld, spread out across their various countries. (There's about 11 or 12 of them now!) And the same holds true for the paper-pushers at 'The Office'.

The only exception I can think of would be the many incarnations of 'Maigret'. There should be only one in the main Toobworld. (But I'm torn as to who it should be.)

CBS has two other remakes on the sked for the Fall, both from the UK. 'The Eleventh Hour' is the first, about a scientist averting catastrophes that could have global impact. (It's coming from Jerry Bruckheimer, so one can always hope for a crossover with any of the 'CSI' shows.) The original starred Patrick Stewart as Professor Ian Hood and the new version has Rufus Sewell affecting an American accent as Jacob Hood. (I don't understand the point in hiring British actors if you don't want to take advantage of their fantastic accents! Did it really matter that Dr. Greg 'House' had to be an American?)

Both series deal with similar topics and are nearly mirror images of each other. In fact, both Professor Hoods have assistants/security personnel named Rachel. Yet I think the TV dimension can maintain them both. Who knows? We might even be able to make the argument that Ian and Jacob are related, despite the Americanized accent on Jacob.

The other is 'Worst Week', which is the second attempt in America to remake 'The Worst Week Of My Life', about a young man's disastrous attempts to blend in with his prospective bride's family. The first version never got out of the pilot stage and had David Ogden Stiers as the future father-in-law. This time around, it's Kurtwood Smith. (The series has also been remade over in Germany as 'Hilfe! Hochzeit! - Die Schlimmste Woche Meines Lebens'.

So far, that's three remakes of shows from other countries on the sked for this coming fall. But ABC has announced another show in the same category, and I'm afraid this time it has to be bumped over to that TV dimension which houses remakes like 'Battlestar Galactica', 'The New Addams Family', and the latest addition, 'Bionic Woman'. ('Knight Rider' will be a sequel, not a remake, so it remains in Earth Prime-Time.)
'Life On Mars', which starred John Simm, Liz White, and the fantastic, iconic, Philip Glenister, ranks up there as one of my Top 20 TV series of all time. And now David E. Kelley has groomed an American version. (Apparently, he won't be involved with the overall production, which will be run by the 'October Road' production team.) This time out, the series stars Jason O'Meara, Colm Meaney, Rachelle Lefevre, Lennie Clarke, and Richard Benjamin.

The premise remains the same - a cop in the present day is struck down by a car, and when he awakes he finds himself in the early 1970s. As the Mancunian version says each week in the opening credits: "Am I mad, in a coma, or am I really back in Time?" The show will deal with his attempts to reconcile his knowledge of crime-fighting with that of a more "primitive" style as well as his search for the answers about his "present" condition.
I think Toobworld might have been able to absorb the premise on a second go-round, even one so specific. But Jason O'Meara will be Sam Tyler; Colm Meaney will take over as Gene Hunt; and Rachelle Lefevre will play Annie Cartwright. These are the exact same character names from the original series. It's too much of a coincidence, and so off it has to go to the dimension of Earth Prime-Time Remakes.

The Toobal Council has spoken.

Toby OB


John Hurt will once again be playing the role of Quentin Crisp, whom he first portrayed in "The Naked Civil Servant" over thirty years ago. "An Englishman In New York" (which takes its name from the Sting song about Crisp) will take place in the Manhattan of the 1970s and 1980s and will begin filming in August for ITV.

Crisp, who once described himself as "The Stately Homo Of England", died in 1999 at the age of 90. So it's always possible that Hurt could reprise the role one last time to cover the last years of Crisp's life. And by doing so, would make the televersion of Quentin Crisp eligible for membership in the TV Crossover Hall of Fame for the three related projects.

Here's a VERY short profile of Quentin Crisp:

Quentin Crisp was Oscar Wilde's perfect descendant. With his calculated caustic words, open homosexuality and wittily provocative attitude toward any kind of conventionality, Crisp caused a bit of a stir in conservative England during the 1950s and 1960s, and even on through the 1970s. In 1981, Quentin Crisp moved to New York City, bringing along his familiar and witty remarks and his eccentricity. Quentin Crisp charmed everyone and became "the face of a modern rebel."

Throughout his near twenty-year tenure on Manhattan, Mr. Crisp wrote a variety of books, reviews, appeared in several movies (most notably playing Elizabeth I in Sally Ann Potter's Orlando) and otherwise delighted us publicly and privately with his inimitable grace, wit and genius. Quentin Crisp died on the eve of touring his one-man show in Manchester, England, on 21 November 1999.

This came from, a very interesting site where you can learn about all aspects of Quentin Crisp.

Toby OB

"If you've been on Television twice
You wear perpetually an expression of fatuous affability
Quentin Crisp


Cartoon Network has two puppets working now in a series of interstitials designed to not only promote the network, but also upcoming movie studio projects.

Jib and Crash will be seen during Cartoon Network commercial breaks on the sets of various movies, where they will be interviewing the stars. I think they may even show up to do some red carpet interviews as well. (Apparently, Jib and Crash work on studio lots with a food services wagon, which provides them the access to the stars.

As was established with the Muppets - whom I should include in "The Essentials"! - puppets are alive and they interact with humans in Toobworld. The reason why we don't see them more often - in shows like 'CSI', 'Law & Order', or 'EastEnders' - is because of human prejudice against puppets, which keeps them sidelined in their own versions of Chinatown like 'Sesame Street'. You'll find them on the Living Island of 'HR Pufnstuf', but not on the living Island of 'Lost'. Apparently puppets are not allowed to fly on Oceanic Airways flights.)

So far, Jib and Crash have introduced a 90 second sneak peek of "Speed Racer" before its May 9th opening, which was followed by several shorter spots of them promoting the "Speed Racer" trailer. Coming up next will be reports on "Kung Fu Panda" during the week of May 26, in which they will interview the movie's star, Jack Black, prior to its opening on my birthday.

I'm wondering if Jib and Crash will only be trotted out for movies that have an animation connection? "Kung Fu Panda" is a CG animation movie from Dreamworks, while "Speed Racer" is a live-action revisioning of the classic sixties anime series.

Toby OB


On the latest episode of 'How I Met Your Mother', Lily's excitement over selling one of her paintings to a G-CWOK in Saint Mark's Place was dashed when she found out that they only wanted it for the frame. (G-CWOK stands for Gay Couple WithOut Kids.)

It turned out that the frame was made by Anton Kreitzer and that made it more valuable than the painting (which they threw out).

This wasn't the first time Anton Kreitzer was cited in a sitcom. That name happened to be Norm Peterson's nom de travail with his mid-life change of occupation to house painter. He needed to install fear into the lazy painting crew he hired, by making them think Kreitzer was a dictator of a boss. ("Kreitzer" is the maiden name of Norm's wife, Vera. He claimed he chose it because it was the scariest name he could think of.)
I think that after deciding upon "Kreitzer" as the last name, Norm's sub-conscious supplied "Anton" as the first name because he knew of the reputation of the "real" Anton Kreitzer for his frames. Who knows? It could be that Vera Kreitzer Peterson was related to Anton.

So this shout-out to 'Cheers' on 'How I Met Your Mother' could serve as an unofficial link between the two series.

Toby OB

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


In the 1972 story of 'Doctor Who' entitled "Carnival Of Monsters", intergalactic showman Vorg attempted to communicate with the Doctor using Polari, which he described as the Telurian carnival lingo. If Vorg knew of the language, he may have learned of it from past visits to Earth, even if he did try to claim that it was Telurian in origin. As he was an intergalactic showman, much like his kinsman Farnum B [who was a recurring character in 'Lost In Space'], Polari as a language may have appealed to Vorg.

And in coming to Earth, Vorg may not have been traveling alone. His entourage may have included showfolk from the stars who settled down here to prey on the human population. These would be those mysterious Night Travelers we saw in the 'Torchwood' episode "From Out Of The Rain".
Here's what Wikipedia has to say about the Polari "language":

Polari (from Italian parlare, "to talk") was a form of cant slang used in the gay subculture in Britain. It was revived in the 1950s and 1960s by its use by camp characters Julian and Sandy in the popular BBC radio show "Round the Horne", but its origins can be traced back to at least the 19th century. Polari is a mixture of Romance (Italian or Mediterranean Lingua Franca), Romany, backslang, rhyming slang, sailor slang, and thieves' cant. Later it expanded to contain words from the Yiddish language of the Jewish subculture which settled in the East End of London, the US forces (present in the UK during World War II) and 1960s drug users. It was a constantly developing form of language, with a small core lexicon of about 20 words (including bona, ajax, eek, cod, naff, lattie, nanti, omi, palone, riah, zhoosh, TBH, trade, vada), with over 500 other lesser-known items.

Polari was used in London fishmarkets, the theatre, and the gay subculture. As Polari, it was used to disguise homosexual activity from potentially hostile outsiders (such as undercover policemen), but also because many gay men worked in theatrical entertainment where the lingo originated (including fairgrounds and circuses, hence the many borrowings from Romani in Polari). The almost identical Parlyaree has been spoken in fairgrounds since at least the 17th century and continues to be used by show travelers in England and Scotland. As theatrical booths, circus acts and menageries were once a common part of European fairs it is likely that the roots of
Polari/Parlyaree lie in the period before both theatre and circus became independent of the fairgrounds. The Parlyaree spoken on fairgrounds tends to borrow much more from Romani, as well as other languages and argots spoken by travelling people, such as cant and backslang.

It was also used extensively in the Merchant Navy, where many gay men joined cruise ships as waiters, stewards and entertainers.

On one hand, it would be used as a means of cover, to allow gay subjects to be discussed aloud without being understood; on the other hand, it was also used by some, particularly the most visibly camp and effeminate, as a further way of asserting their identity.

Which makes me wonder - Was Vorg addressing the Doctor in Polari because he thought he was a fellow traveler among the show folk? Or was it because he thought the Time Lord was homosexual? Either way, it must have been the shirt ruffles that tipped him off......

Below I'm listing some of the words to be found in Polari, those most likely to be used in Toobworld, no matter what the show (and no matter the reason it was being used):

alamo hot for you/him

balonie rubbish

basket the bulge of male genitals through clothes

batts shoes

drink (beverage)

effeminate or passive gay man

small/little (means "cute" or "jewel" in French)

pick up

blue code word for "homosexual"

bona good

bonaroo wonderful, excellent

bungery pub

cackle talk/gossip

camp effeminate

toilet, also spelt khazi

penis (from Italian - cazzo)

charper to search

charpering omi policeman

chaver to shag/a shag (sexual intercourse) (from Italian dialectal "chiavare"?)

cottage public toilet (particularly with reference to sexual assignations. Early public toilets in the UK were designed to resemble a small house so as to disguise their intended function)

crimper hairdresser

dinarly money (thought to be derived from "Dinari")

dog and bone

dona woman (perhaps from Italian donna or Lingua Franca dona)

drag clothes, esp. women's clothes

doss bed

ecaf face (backslang)

fantabulosa fabulous/wonderful

gelt money (Yiddish)

glossies magazines

jubes breasts

kaffies trousers

meese plain, ugly (from Yiddish "meeiskeit, in turn from Hebrew for repulsive, loathsome, despicable, abominable)

naff awful, dull, hetero

national handbag welfare, government financial assistance

nishta nothing, no (from Yiddish ????? - "there isn't")

palone woman

palone-omi lesbian

scarper to run off (from Italian scappare, to escape or run away or from rhyming slang Scarpa Flow, to go)

zhooshy showy

Among the shows that have used these terms have been 'Doctor Who', 'Porridge', 'Monty Python's Flying Circus', and 'Queer Eye For The Straight Guy'. On 'Porridge', you couldn't escape the presence of Norman Stanley Fletcher there in the prison without some variation of "naff" escaping his lips, which he used to replace expletives. (They weren't familiar with "frak" back in the 1970s.) His use of the phrase "Naff off!" became so pervasive, that even Princess Anne used it in public once!

You can find a much richer
glossary of terms here.

One final question: How come the TARDIS didn't give the Doctor the ability to understand Polari?

Toby OB

"Why do they talk this rather strange, stilted, underground jargon?"
Long John Cleese
~The Expedition to Lake Pahoe~
'Monty Python's Flying Circus'

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


When I'm in need of particular graphics for a blog post here at Inner Toob, I usually try Guba or YouTube or my own collection of DVDs. Sometimes - as was the case for the 'Lost In Space' pictures of the living fire Dictator - I order up the disk via Netflix. But this time I did some networking and borrowed a boxed set from the head of security at work.

This is a picture of Mr. Giovanni from the 'Naked City' episode "No Naked Ladies At Giovanni's House". I mentioned this portrait the other day with regards to the story about Isaiah Washington suing ABC and 'Grey's Anatomy' for using his likeness without his permission. (I agree with his viewpoint, but it does cast a pall for TV shows which want to draw on their past history.)

The character of Mr. Giovanni never appears in the story except as seen in the picture. He passed away many years before, but still had quite a hold on his son, played by Harry Guardino.

Maybe I'm wrong - it happens too many times to keep track around here! - but to me, this is a portrait of Jackie Coogan. Yet Jackie Coogan doesn't appear anywhere in the episode.

Perhaps it's from an earlier episode of the show. Maybe it's from a movie. It was probably lying around a prop room at the studio and since it would be cheaper to use the old one rather than commission a new picture.....

At any rate, I think this is a picture of Jackie Coogan [with a toupee], and it wouldn't surprise me to learn he didn't get a penny for it. (The story of his career, sadly.)

What do you think?

Toby OB

Monday, May 12, 2008


I trust that you all visit the many links in my blogroll there to the left. At the very least you've checked them out. (If not, do so!)

One of my daily stops (and several times a day at that!) is to Joe B's "I Am A TV Junkie".

Now, when I went searching for pictures today of John Colicos as Mikkos Cassadine from 'General Hospital' back in 1981, I came across this caricature of Colicos in the role.
And I have to wonder now......

Could Joe be part of the Cassadine crime family?

Just sayin', is all........

Toby OB


Great Britain has now seen "The Doctor's Daughter" episode of 'Doctor Who', while here in the States we've just had "Planet Of The Ood". I don't have much to say about the Ood-sphere in relation to Toobworld, save for the inference that they share the same solar system as the Sensorites from a VERY old 'Doctor Who' story. But at least the episode did use two of the 'Lost' numbers - it took place in the 42nd Century and the climax occurred in Warehouse 15.

Plus there was an always welcome guest star turn by Tim McInnerny.
Actually, I still have one last piece to post about the previous episode, "The Fires Of Pompeii", dealing with the previous series in which we saw the Pyroviles.

I think the true Pyrovile form was that of the living fire within the stone bodies. (Perhaps they were related to the living star-stuff from the episode of "42"?) The stone bodies gave them form and individuality, a rebellion perhaps against their fiery version of the Founders' Great Link found in 'Deep Space Nine'. As such, then we've seen three other Pyroviles in the TV Universe, about forty years ago - on 'Lost In Space'.
In "Space Beauty", traveling showman Farnum B returned to the Jupiter 2 with an offer for Judy Robinson - he wanted her to enter into an intergalactic beauty contest. The winner would go with the ultimate judge, known as The Dictator, back to his home galaxy, where her cool beauty could quench the fires within.

And that was to be taken literally, not just as a figurative sex reference! The Dictator - and assumedly, his two aides de camp - consisted of living fire within a suit of armor. It would make sense that the Dictator had to be of the same species as the Pyroviles, and perhaps the living star in "42". But enough time had passed in which they were able to advance from using stone body units to encasing their individuality in flame-resistant metal.

But in the end, the Dictator and his two henchmen were undone by the same method as the Doctor used over two thousand years earlier - moisture. The Doctor had a cute little yellow water pistol to help him out, while Major Don West was able to crank up a recalcitrant weather machine to cause snow around the Jupiter 2. (Frankly, I don't know why they blasted off from Earth with such a crude device when the government probably appropriated the weather machine used by Mikos Cassadine on the city of Port Charles back in 1981. The Space Agency had plenty of time to refine the equipment for a more peaceful use!)

By the way, Farnum B would be from the same world and culture as that of Vorg who wasin the 3rd Doctor's adventure "Carnival Of Monsters".
'Doctor Who'
'Lost In Space'
'General Hospital'

Toby OB


I'm still working my way through the collection of 'Poirot' stories with David Suchet assaying the role of the Belgian detective. And before I move on to other mystery series like 'Foyle's War' and 'Crime Travelers', I added a few other appearances by Hercule Poirot to my Netflix Queue.

I still have several of the Suchet disks to receive, but Netflix saw fit to skip over them and send me "Thirteen At Dinner" instead. It's a 1985 tele-flick in which Peter Ustinov reprised the role of Poirot, but bringing him over to the TV Universe instead of remaining in the Movie Universe. AND it was updated to take place in the present day (now over twenty years past.) So his portrayal of Poirot can't be considered the same man he played in "Death On The Nile" and "Evil Under The Sun".
David Suchet has the lock on the role of Poirot for Earth Prime-Time, so Ustinov's incarnation must be shipped off to a different TV dimension. And I think it might be interesting to settle him down with his little gray cells in the same Toobworld where William Conrad's updated version of Nero Wolfe can be discovered. (What makes this idea most appealing is that Lee Horsley played movie star and murder suspect Brian Martin in "Thirteen At Dinner". Horsley also played Wolfe's legman Archie Goodwin in the Conrad series. So we could make the argument that Martin and Goodwin were twin brothers; Martin changed his name for his career.)

"Thirteen At Dinner" is another version of "Lord Edgeware Dies", an Agatha Christie novel which was also adapted for Suchet's series.
With this TV movie, you get to see two of the screen's Hercule Poirots together! Suchet appears as Detective Inspector James Japp, and it's a credit to his acting talents that I never once thought of him as Poirot while watching his turn as the Scotland Yard policeman.

One added benefit, we got to see Sir David Frost as himself. If you want to then link "Thirteen At Dinner" to the episode of 'Here's Lucy' in which he appeared as himself, that's up to you. I'm keeping 'Here's Lucy' in the main Toobworld, and dealing with alternate versions of TV shows is too much of a headache!
Toby OB


In Vacaville, near San Francisco, Walter Witthoef found a pit bull in the engine bay of his F-150. Somehow it got stuck inside the engine compartment with its head poking up behind the motor. To pass the time, the dog started chewing the fuel lines, distributor wires, some hoses, and whatever else was in range of its mouth.

Witthoef called Animal Services who were able to free the pit bull and reunite it with its owners the next day.

Big deal!

Over in Europe, it might not be uncommon to find old professors munching on fast food burgers under the hood and resting on the engines.

Yet another example as to why Toobworld is a world of fantasy.

(That image is from a McDonald's commercial, part of the "No Big Deal" campaign.)

Toby OB


I have no choice but to admit that I'm the wrong age for 'Yo Gabba Gabba' on Nick, Jr.. (But then, college kids are also in the wrong age group for this show, and yet it's really popular especially with the stoners.)

I finally checked out a segment of the show, thanks to New York Newsday's TV Zone blog. It was a dance party number extolling the fun in eating all your vegetables.

Everybody was so happy to be swallowed whole by the monster. And all of them laughed and sang as they floated in the juices of the monster's stomach.

Party in my tummy, my ass!

Sure, maybe little kids are too young to grasp the concept of the whole digestive system, but they shouldn't be deluded into thinking that the stomach is an indoor pool. Those fluids are at work, breaking down the veggies, the chicken leg, and the cheese slice to absorb their components. (That cheese slice would be the first to go!)
That clip should be played with new vocals. Instead of laughing and singing as they swim in the digestive bile, we should hear the veggies and chicken screaming in horror as the corrosive liquids burn away their flesh. (Those smiley faces they bear could just as well be painful grimaces of despair.)

You're never too young for allegories about the Holocaust!

Yeah, I know. I read way too much into what I see on TV. But hey! If I didn't, you wouldn't have this site to visit.

Toby OB


Even though the character of Dr. Preston Burke, as portrayed by Isaiah Washington, is no longer a part of 'Grey's Anatomy as a cast member, the character's history is still tied up with the show. And within the current events of the show, Dr. Burke is still a part of their world, even if he isn't at Seattle Grace anymore, nor even in Seattle.

However, the actor doesn't feel that 'Grey's Anatomy' and ABC has the right to use his picture anymore to refer to the character - at least not without remuneration.

Isaiah Washington has filed a complaint with SAG over ABC's use of his picture in the most recent episode of "Grey's Anatomy."

The picture was seen in a newspaper clipping about Dr. Burke receiving a prestigious surgeon's award. (It would be Toobworld bliss if it turned out the award was the Cushing Descending Left Arterial Award which has been mentioned on 'St. Elsewhere' and 'Chicago Hope'!)

Apparently, if it had only been the newspaper article about Dr. Burke, there would have been nothing he could do. After all, the show does own the rights to the character. However, Washington feels they have no right to use his image without his consent, perhaps in much the same way that actors have rights protected in their contracts regarding the use of their image in promotional retail products like clothing, board games, and the classic lunchbox.

The Screen Actor's Guild and ABC were notified by Washington's attorney, Peter Nelson, that the use of his client's picture was inappropriate.

"They have the rights of the character to advance the story, but not the image," said Nelson. And he's expecting Isaiah Washington to receive a financial settlement because the producers failed to get his consent for the use of the picture.

So far as I know, ABC has yet to comment on the issue.

This could have an impact on the general concept of Toobworld. More and more, shows depend on their history and backstory to flesh out their little corner of the TV Universe. It may have started with the 'Star Trek' franchise, but it has come up in shows like 'St. Elsewhere', 'Babylon 5', and the assorted series of David E. Kelley on the various networks. The current best example of a show depending heavily on its past history would probably be 'Lost'. Let's face it, that series would be lost without those backstories. (When it comes to plays on words, I regret nothing!)

In fact, 'Lost' had a recent example in which the image of a character was used after the actress had already departed the series. In the episode "Je Yeon", Sun's TV was playing an episode of "Expose" dubbed in Korean, in which we saw Nikki Hernandez. Nikki had died a few weeks previously after being buried alive.

However, that scene had been one that was already used in the show - we saw the flashback in which she filmed the 'Expose' episode. So the producers had full right to use their own material over again. It often happens in soap operas as well. Washington is claiming that the use of the photograph is something new; it probably was never used in the show before.

The closest thing I can think of for a comparison would be after Nicholas Colasanto died while he was still playing Coach on 'Cheers'. Afterwards, his framed picture of Geronimo, which he kept in his dressing room, was given a place of importance on the back wall in the bar, and I don't think any of his relatives would have minded that his presence was always present on the show.

There's also the use of Tom Skerritt's picture as William Walker on 'Brothers & Sisters'. This time, the character is dead, but the actor is still among us. (Thank God for that! I think Skerritt is fantastic, and I hope he gets to play Daniel Faraday's Dad in a 'Lost' flashback.)

However, Skerritt is still actively involved in the series, appearing in flashbacks every so often - including last night's second season finale "Prior Commitments" (which I've only just finished watching).

One other example that comes to mind was an episode of 'Naked City', about which I've commented in the past. Harry Guardino played a man who was obsessed with the spectre of his father and the way his own life had turned out. The father was long deceased, and never appeared in flashback, but there was a portrait of him. And as far as I'm concerned, it was a picture of Jackie Coogan. There was no onscreen acknowledgement of his participation in this way - for alls I know, it could have been a prop from one of Coogan's earlier roles in TV or the movies. (As soon as I can get hold of that episode, I'll add a picture of that portrait so that you can judge for yourself.)

This may seem like a piffling matter, but Toobworld Central will be keeping an eye on how the case proceeds.....

Toby OB

Sunday, May 11, 2008


Yet another package arrived from on Saturday, one DVD boxed set and a novel.....

'VOYAGERS!' - The Complete Series
This was a fun NBC series that established its own take on time travel and its consequences, with a Time Agency that might one day employ Captain Jack Harkness and Captain John Hart from 'Torchwood'.

There were 20 episodes made in all, and they're all included here. As much fun as the series was, it couldn't compete against the juggernaut of '60 Minutes' on CBS. I don't know why the network didn't try moving it to Saturday, a better night for a kids' show back then.

The inside cover flap describes this novel as the story of "a man who stumbles upon the discovery of a lifetime - or many lifetimes...."

This should provide a pleasant enough diversion during my evening trips to work each night on the A train......

Toby OB


In the first season finale of 'Mulberry', which has been playing on Long Island's Channel 21 as part of their Friday evening of Britcoms, Alice told Bert that she was going to eat all the bubble and squeak and there'd be none for him. And she'd make him watch her eat it all.

To me, it sounded like she was going to have a heaping helping of cleaning products.

It's not a familiar term over here in America, but apparently it's quite popular up to the manor, squire. It's a way of getting rid of the leftovers from Saturday dinner and Sunday breakfast - leftover mashed or roasted potatoes, leftover cabbage, perhaps some ham or bacon and flavored to taste with salt, pepper, butter and and other spices.

It's no wonder I didn't know about it, at least. In my household, leftovers was a foreign word!

And speaking of foreign words, bubble and squeak is known by other names around Europe:

"Stamp-pot" in the Netherlands
"Trinxat" from Northeast Spain and Andorra
"Biksemad" from Denmark
"Pyttipanna" from Sweden
"Colcannon" from Ireland
and my favorite,
"Rumbledethumps" from Scotland.

(That sounds more like the condition of your bum and your thighs if you eat too much of it.)

Here's a typical recipe for Bubble and Squeak, in case you want to add it to your own menu of international cuisine:

1/2 medium head cabbage, sliced
3 slices bacon, diced
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 cup cubed cooked ham
1 tablespoon butter
3 cups potatoes - baked, cooled and thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon paprika
salt and pepper to taste

In a medium saucepan, cook cabbage in a small amount of water for about 5 minutes, or until tender. Drain, and set aside.

In a well-seasoned cast iron skillet, cook bacon and onion until onion is soft and bacon is cooked. Add ham, and cook until heated through. Add butter, then mix in the cooked cabbage and potatoes. Season with paprika, salt, and pepper. Cook until browned on bottom, turn, and brown again.

Apparently you serve it up as a side dish to your Sunday night meat with some fried tomato, or even serve it in the morning as a substitute for hash browns.

Get your week off to a good fart - er, start with all of that cabbage from the weekend!

Toby OB