Saturday, June 28, 2008


It's been a while since I've done an "Echoes". It was while watching "George Carlin Again!", shown in tribute to the late comic on HBO2, that I got the idea for this one. In his stand-up act, Carlin talked about all the various phrases we have for the passage of Time - "In a sec", "sooner or later", "any time now", "just a minute", "when the cows come home", "in a while"......
"'Now' seems so soon."
Alix Garrett

"What's Time? Who can define it?"
Mona Roberts
'Burke's Law'

Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow....
Who knows how much separates one from the other
Or if they can be separated
'Logan's Run'

Time! What is Time?
A corporeal measurement of Time and Space: a human boundary
'Murphy Brown'

"It's been well-documented that Time is not a fixed construct."
Dr. Gregory House

"Some things are deeper than Time and Distance."
Kevin Arnold
'The Wonder Years'

"Time can take forever."
Olive Snooks
'Pushing Daisies'

"Forever's a long time. I know that first hand."
Mark Volchek

"Eternity's an awful long time to go without a coon hunt."
Heider Simpson
'The Twilight Zone'

"Time is irrelevant in the Limbo state."
Dr. Dagle
'Shades of L.A.'

"He's locked himself in his room with his teddy bear!"
"He hasn't done that since he proved that Time was an illusion!"

Toby OB


I think this is the first time the components to one of my theories of "Relateeveety" were ever showcased on TV in the same week. In fact, parts one and two of the second half ended up serving as book-ends for the first half!

The American broadcasts of 'Doctor Who' on the Sci-Fi Channel just broadcast "Forest Of The Dead" last night; part one of that story, "Silence In The Library", aired last weekend. We were introduced to the members of Mr. Lux's expedition to the planet known as "The Library", among whom was an archaeologist nick-named "Other Dave" (since there was already "Proper Dave" in the team's roster).

It's my contention that about thirty centuries earlier, the beginnings of Other Dave's family tree began in Chicago, which we saw in "The Shirt Contest", this week's episode of 'My Boys'.

O.T. Fagbenle, who played "Other Dave" on 'Doctor Who', was Dez, the owner of a trendy bar where Brendan Dorff was applying for a job as a bartender. (He lost his gig as a radio deejay and couldn't find another.) As it turned out, Dez was now with Brendan's ex-girlfriend Wendy, and perhaps even now married to her. (Can't remember that particular detail - and I watched it twice!) If not married, Dez at least made a pretty good effort insuring he'd be with Wendy for awhile at any rate - she was about seven months pregnant with their child.

And it's the belief here at Toobworld Central that the child of Dez and Wendy will one day count "Other Dave" among his descendants.

I don't think any of us will be around to see if that turns out to be true.....

Toby OB


"Amazing, isn't it?
Millions unemployed, a lunatic about to take power in Germany,
And all we read about is how some spoiled brat stole her best friend's fiancé
'Poirot' - "Death On The Nile"

During the voyage up the Nile, Ferguson was reading a copy of Life magazine which had President Franklin Delano Roosevelt on the cover. A quick internet search shows that this particular issue of Life had a news-stand date of January 4, 1937.
Let's figure that the mail service might have been somewhat slow back then, especially to third-world nations, and that magazine would probably be long out of date by the time Ferguson was looking through it.

Yet Hitler became the Chancellor of Germany on January 30th, 1933, about five years before Ferguson said he was about to.

Ferguson was an intelligent man. Not very conversant with how to deal with others, but he had his book smarts, being actually Lord Dagliesh traveling under an alias. So he must have known that "the lunatic" already had taken power in Germany.

I believe that he was thinking more along the lines that Hitler was expanding his control over the region. Perhaps Ferguson was referring to the revelation by Hitler of his war plans at the Hossbach Conference on November 5th, 1937.

This would give plenty of time for that issue of Life magazine to reach the S.S. Karnak, and could indicate that all of these Englishers visited Egypt during the colder winter months.

Toby OB

Friday, June 27, 2008


As I mentioned last week, I've picked up the boxed set for the best of Season One of 'Checkmate' (as well as the one for Season Two). So last night I watched the debut episode, "Death Runs Wild" which guest-starred Anne Baxter (in full-on Nora Chandler histrionics).

Her character, Mrs. Kipp, wanted only the head of the agency, Don Corey, to come out to her ranch to help her with the death threats which she was receiving. But Corey was too busy with another case that demanded his attention and so he sent his two partners, Jed Sills and Professor Carl Hiatt.

All we know about that other case is that it was referred to as "the Burlingame case". (The spelling could also be "Burlingham".)

So why can't we assume that this never-seen character of "Burlingame" could be connected by family ties to Z.B. Burlingame, who appeared in "The Class of 1980" episode of 'Midnight Caller'? To bolster the argument, both shows take place in San Francisco. (In two different sites, her last name is spelled "Burlingame" in one, "Burlingham" in the other.)

The actress who played Z.B. was born in 1960, the same year 'Checkmate' debuted. If Z.B. is the same age as Amy Resnick (an automatic assumption at Toobworld Central), perhaps Checkmate Inc. was helping her father in some way? Perhaps by protecting his pregnant wife?

I'm the first to admit it's trivial. But that's what builds the TV Universe!

Toobworld: an epic undertaking of trivial proportions!

As it happens, I don't think Z.B. survived past her 30th birthday, if the plot summary for "The Class Of 1980" is any indication.....

A very pregnant Devon hosts a fundraiser with Jack as the object of the bachelor auction. Her college classmates attend; however, one by one, they fall victim to a murderer. Jack, Zymak and Deacon all work the angles of this case, with the evidence pointing firmly at Jack's new girlfriend.

Or it could be that it wasn't Jack's girlfriend after all, but somebody else - maybe even Z.B.! If so, there's a crime that Checkmate Inc. wasn't able to prevent thirty years earlier.......

Toby OB


It was announced yesterday that Chris Noth will be leaving 'Law & Order: Criminal Intent', where he has been easing the load on original star Vincent D'Onofrio by taking the lead in half of the episodes. Once again, our TV screens will be deprived of the presence of TV Crossover Hall of Famer Detective Mike Logan. He'll still be around in Toobworld, I'm sure - unless they're killing him off! - but we just won't be able to watch what he's up to.

In his place, Dick Wolf is bringing in Jeff Goldblum, who I'm sure will be bringing his own unique quirks to his share of the episodes to complement those of D'Onofrio's Detective Goren.

Once I heard that Goldblum had been cast, one thought only came to mind. And apparently I wasn't the only one who had the same idea.....

Here's a snippet from the news story at TVSquad, by Bob Sassone:

No word yet on what character Goldblum will play, but wouldn't it be all kinds of awesome if he reprised as role as Raines for the show (without the seeing of dead people bit)?

And this is by two of that post's commenters:

Nathaniel said...
So, Goldblum being Raines on L&O:CI is never going to happen, but DAMN that would be awesome! I totally agree. Both NBC shows, right? I would totally watch CI (and I never regularly watch any L&O at the moment) if they actually brought him in as Raines. Mention he cured himself or actually have him having his problem... that'd bring a new dimension to a L&O show!

Never gonna happen, of course, but would be awesome.

At least Goldblum's agreeing to be back on TV. Quite cool.

Number6ix said...
Maybe it isn't so "improbable" as you might think it is. After all, check out Richard Belzer as "Det. John Munch". First appearing in "Homicide: Life on the Street", when that show ended the character was transplanted from Baltimore ot New York and into "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit". Here is a character that not only crossed over from other shows, but has even crossed networks [FOX-TV, "The X- Files: "The Unusual Suspects"]. Heck, if you catch the "Took" episode of "The Wire", you can catch the detective, back visiting Baltimore, and having a drink at Kavanaugh's Bar.

In the fictional universe of television, if Munch can move from Baltimore to New York, Raines could move from San Francisco to New York. We can only hope... and wait for the season's premire episode...

O'Bviously rights to the character would have to be negotiated, but wouldn't it be awesome if Detective Michael Raines moved East; not just to escape his personal demons, but to get out from the scrutiny of those around him who knew too much of his circumstances?

However, as lost as I can be in the fantasy of a TV Universe, I'm a practical man as well. I know that it's far more likely Goldblum will be playing a brand new character on the show.

But here's something interesting: the 'Raines' page still exists at, nearly a year after the show was canceled......

At least we who enjoy the fantasy of Toobworld know that Michael Raines is still out there... somewhere. We just can't view him at present.

Toby OB

Thursday, June 26, 2008


'Doctor Who' - "Silence In The Library"
Before she realized that the Doctor was from a time before she met him, Dr. River Song looked through her diary to get an idea as to "when" he was in their relationship. As cue to trigger his memory, she brought up several highlights they shared together, and one of these was their picnic at Asgard.

This is a reference that could work two ways. One would be to the classical version of Asgard as the home of the Norse gods, the Aesir. It would have been in its own dimension yet still on earth (perhaps a shift in dimensional harmonics or some such technobabble) and could only be accessed by Bifrost, the rainbow bridge.

Although established in the Elder Eddas, Asgard could only be a part of Toobworld once it was seen in some TV show or TV movie. And it was during an episode of 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys' that we got to see Asgard ('Norse By Norsevest').
As the TARDIS can travel through Time And Relative Dimensions In Space, it would have been easy enough for the Doctor and River Song to reach the home of the gods, perhaps at some pivotal point in their legends.

But there's another possibility......

The Asgard is the name of an alien race, ancient, wise, and mentors to the human race, who have allied themselves with Earth via the Stargate team. They resemble the classic "Roswell Grey" type of alien, with the oversized heads, large dark eyes, and thin bodies with almost stick-like limbs.

Originally their home planet was Othala in the Halla System of the Ida Galaxy. But the Asgard abandoned it during the wars with the Replicators and instead settled on Orilla in the same galaxy (perhaps a different star system, however). From there, they triggered the collapse of Halla's star so that they would all die in the resultant apocalypse. (Their race was doomed and they didn't want anything left behind which could prove an advantage to their enemies.)
So their planets were Othala, Orilla, maybe Halla as well. But it could be that their home planet became identified with the name of their race as well, so that it was also called Asgard. And it could be on one of those homeworlds where River Song had her picnic with her Doctor.......

Me, I'm a sucker for pseudo-deities so I'm rooting for my first splainin!

Toby OB

Do you know any legends about your Gods,
you know, where they're supposed to live?
Oh, sure. In Asgard.
How would I get there?
Die in battle, d'uh!
'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys'

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


I forgot to add a link earlier to that banned Heinz Mayonnaise advert from the United Kingdom.

Here it is.

You can see for yourself how stupid this controversy is. It's a cute, harmless blipvert.

And like I said, yank it off the airwaves; it doesn't matter. It will live forever in Toobworld!

Toby OB


'Rescue Me' has returned, but not as the hour-long series; instead it's back in five minute "minisodes" which began airing last night on FX at 10 pm. (This will be the plan for the next ten weeks.)

I'm still of a mind not to return to the series when it finally comes back for its next season. I wasn't pleased with the way the Jerry storyline played out and I'm sick of the way women always throw themselves at Tommy. I think it's just Denis Leary's way to exalt himself, a real ego boost. And does every season have to end with someone in his family kicking the bucket?

I accept that Tommy is not meant to be "loved" by the audience, but there's nothing about the character that makes me want to watch him. For me, he's the weakest part of the show and its fatal flaw.

[Michael Scott of 'The Office' is the same way for me. Even though it airs on my nights off, I record the show and then fast forward through his segments as well as the commercials. Have you ever seen the edited version of the episode "The Bat" that takes out the subplot of Michael talking to Ryan's business class? It's so much funnier running as just the plotline about the bat loose in the office.]

Anyway, I figured last season's finale, with Charles Durning as the Gavin patriarch slipping into his eternal sleep at the ball game was a nice way to end my involvement with the series in general. It had that feel of a series finale as well.

In the meantime, I'll continue to watch these minisodes - hell, it's only five minutes out of my very limited viewing time once a week - at least until I get the feeling they're about to go off the rails as well. And that may happen, as Leary has said that they will get very dark before they're done.

The first one was quite funny though and provided a great showcase for Sean with Lou as his comic enabler. And very little of Tommy, which is a good thing for me.

If you missed the first minisode, or want to see it again, check out the Crackle website.

Toby OB


Please don't read that heading too fast....!

NBC will jump on the George Carlin Tribute Express this coming weekend when the 11:30 pm timeslot on Saturday night will be given over to the very first episode of 'Saturday Night Live' shown in its entirety. As I mentioned two days ago, Carlin was the first host for the show which probably bears very little likeness to what it's like today. (Or, for that matter, what it would eventually be like a few months down the line from its premiere.)

Let's not kid ourselves. NBC hopes to make some bucks off of this move. The show is in repeats now, so the curiosity factor should be high. Which could mean more dollar revenue from the advertisers. (Not exactly sure if that can still be negotiated at this late stage in the game.)

But even so, it gives us even more Carlin on TV to enjoy this week. It all begins tonight with some of his HBO specials being rerun on HBO2, beginning with "George Carlin At USC" at 8 pm ET. (Is it EDT now? If so, don't spray it on your crops!)

This will be followed by:

"George Carlin Again" at 9:30 p.m. ET
"Carlin at Carnegie" 11 p.m. ET
"Carlin on Campus" midnight ET
"Playin’ with Your Head" 1 a.m. ET

Toby OB


As of Monday, Britain's Advertising Standards Authority had received nearly 200 complaints about a Heinz mayonnaise commercial which showed two men kissing.

The blipvert has a family of four - two parents, two kids - only the parents are both men. The kids call one of them "Mum" even though he looks like Robert DeNiro in a deli uniform and he speaks with a New York accent. "Mum" makes sandwiches for the kids to take to school, saddles them with some advice, and then gives his partner his sandwich to take to work.

As the dad rushes off, "Mum" says, "Hey! You forgettin' sumpthin'?" Contrite Dad returns and they kiss. And then off he goes with an admonishment from "Mum" to hurry back home... "Sweetcheeks".

The cowardly suits at Heinz have already pulled the ad, even though it was supposed to run for another month. Figures.
But in Toobworld, it doesn't matter. Once broadcast, it's forever a part of the TV Universe.

And with so many news organizations with copies of it, and the fact that it's on YouTube and other video outlets, this ad will be like the Apple 1984 blipvert for MacIntosh. "It was shown only once," we're always told, and yet that ad shows up all the time in retrospectives! This mayo plug (sounds kinky!) will live forever!

If they wanted to avoid controversy in the first place, what they should have done was have a woman playing the mother and show her in scenes of "domestic bliss" as she heads down to the kitchen while her husband and kids get ready for work and school respectively. But then, just as she opens the mayonnaise jar, suddenly she's transformed into this New Yawk deli man. The message would be that Heinz mayo will help even an ordinary housewife in the United Kingdom make sandwiches as good as the professionals. Then the commercial could have continued as it was. We'd still see the two men kiss, but we'd know he was really kissing his wife.

It's too late to take this corrective measure now, of course; the damage is done. Gay groups are already pissed that it was pulled off the air; this would look like appeasement to their groups for the original slight.

But like I said, it doesn't matter in the TV Universe. Based on the way the ad aired, this is a British home in which two gay men are raising two lovely young children who seem perfectly adjusted to the fact that their "mother" is a burly New Yorker.

And more power to that family! Just in time for the Gay Pride celebrations!

Toby OB

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


Two words, spoken twice, will forever keep the voice of Dody Goodman alive in the memories of classic TV lovers:

Mary Hartman,
Mary Hartman

Dody Goodman passed away over the weekend at the age of 93.

Ms. Goodman played Mary's mother on the soap opera spoof which became as addictive as any of the daytime dramas that were playing it straight. Married to George Schumway, Martha Schumway's maiden name was Larkin and her father gained a reputation in the last years of his life as the notorious "Fernwood Flasher". At one point in the show, she had an affair with a hot air balloonist who crashed in her kitchen.

Here is a list of the roles Dody Goodman brought to life in Toobworld:

"The Mary Tyler Moore Hour" (1979) TV series .... Ruby Bell

"Forever Fernwood" (1977) TV series .... Martha Schumway

"Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman" .... Martha Schumway


"One Life to Live" (1968) TV series .... Molly McDermott

"Diff'rent Strokes" .... Aunt Sophia Drummond

"Punky Brewster" .... Mrs. Morton

"St. Elsewhere" .... Gretchen Parks
- Blizzard (1984)
- All About Eve (1983)

"Texas" (1980) TV series .... Mavis Cobb

"Search for Tomorrow" (1951) TV series .... Althea Franklin

Bring Me the Head of Dobie Gillis (1988) (TV) .... Ruth

I Dream of Jeannie: 15 Years Later (1985) (TV) .... Scheherazade

"Boston Common" .... Mrs. Gunderson
- I.D. Endow (1997)

"Here and Now" .... William's Grandmother
- Take My Grandparents... Please (1992)

"Murder, She Wrote" .... Beverly Hills
- If It's Thursday, It Must Be Beverly (1987)

"Bustin' Loose"
- Rain, Rain Go Away (1987)

"Crazy Like a Fox"
- The Duke Is Dead (1986)

"Just Our Luck"
- Uncle Harry (1983)

"The Love Boat"
- April the Ninny/The Loan Arranger/First Voyage, Last Voyage (1981) TV episode .... Ms. Chadwick
- Julie's Dilemma/Who's Who/Rocky (1978) TV episode .... Patricia Seldon

"Fantasy Island" .... Mona Boggs
- High Off the Hog/Reprisal (1981)

"CBS Children's Mystery Theatre" .... Miss Eells
- The Treasure of Alpheus T. Winterborn (1980)

"Flying High" .... Midge
- Beautiful People (1978)

"The Defenders" .... Miss Kalish
- The Locked Room (1962)

"The Phil Silvers Show" .... Waitress
- Rich Kid. (????)

Family Reunion: A Relative Nightmare (1995) (TV) .... Grandma Dotty Dooley

Valentine Magic on Love Island (1980) (TV) .... Ida Kramer

"Alvin & the Chipmunks" .... Miss Rebecca

The Chipmunk Adventure (1987) (voice) .... Miss Rebecca Miller

A Chipmunk Reunion (1985) (TV) (voice) .... Miss Rebecca Miller

TOOBWORLD/CINEVERSE INTERFACE Splash (1984) .... Mrs. Stimler

Splash, Too (1988) (TV) .... Mrs. Stimler

Someday I'll have to check out her appearances as herself on the 'Tonight' show with Jack Parr.... if they have any episodes available at the Paley Center. Supposedly she proved to be so popular that Parr let her go after a year for fear he'd be just the announcer for the "Dody Goodman Show"!

As Martha, she was one of my favorites in Fernwood, Ohio, and I'll miss hearing her addled reasonings.

May she rest in peace.

Toby OB


Thanks to his many specials on HBO, hosting the very first 'Saturday Night Live', and plenty of appearances doing his routines on variety programs and late night talk shows, George Carlin will always be best remembered as himself in the TV Universe. But he also contributed a number of fictional "tele-folks" to inhabit Toobworld as well.

Although the show ran for only twelve episodes in the late 1990s, I think George O'Grady of 'The George Carlin Show' will be the character best remembered of these roles. O'Grady was the working stiff version of Carlin, but instead of expounding on his ideas in front of large studio audiences, George O'Grady was limited to those passengers trapped in his cab and the other patrons at his favorite watering hole as his audience.

Before George O'Grady hacked his way into the scene, it would probably be Mr. Conductor of 'Shining Time Station' who would be his best known appearance in the Tele-Folks Directory. Mr. Conductor was a miniaturized human who worked at the train station and helped the local kids (and the other adults who worked there) to learn important life lessons.
And then there was George Lester, one of many agents representing Ann at the Gilliam & Norris Theatrical Agency. He wasn't on the show for more than a few episodes at most; the series centered almost entirely on Ann Marie and her boyfriend Donald, so most people today probably don't even remember Carlin as a recurring cast member.

Some might argue that time traveler Rufus would be Carlin's best known character, and that would be true - over in the movie universe. Although Toobworld had its own version of "Bill And Ted's Excellent Adventure", Carlin only reprised the character in the Tooniverse. For Toobworld, Rick Overton played Rufus.
Here is the full list of characters in Toobworld who were embodied by George Carlin:

"The Simpsons" .... Munchie
- D'oh-in' in the Wind (1998)

"Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventures" (1990) TV series .... Rufus

"Streets of Laredo" (1995) TV mini-series .... Billy Williams

"The George Carlin Show" .... George O'Grady

"Shining Time Station" .... Mr. Conductor

"Welcome Back, Kotter" .... Wally 'The Wow' Wechsel
- Radio Free Freddie (1977)

"That Girl" .... George Lester

Working Tra$h (1990) (TV) .... Ralph

Justin Case (1988) (TV) .... Justin Case

Repeating that Red Skelton refrain:
"May God Bless......"

Toby OB


Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine posted this notice the other day:

"On Saturday, June 21, EMPSFM [held] its 2008 Science Fiction Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Those being honored this year are Betty and Ian Ballantine (Literature Category), William Gibson (Literature Category), Richard M. Powers (Art Category), and Rod Serling (Film, Television and Media Category.)"

It's Rod Serling's induction that interests us at Toobworld Central, of course. Here's the write-up about Serling which EMP/SFM used to describe the writer-producer, reprinted from John Clute and Peter Nicholls' "Encyclopedia of Science Fiction":

American scriptwriter and producer Working name of US screenwriter and television producer Rodman Edward Serling, best known for the television series 'The Twilight Zone', for which he won three Hugo Awards (1960-62). A paratrooper in WWII, he went to New York in 1948 as a freelance writer, first for radio and then for television. During the 1950s he became one of the most highly regarded television writers, winning many awards including six Emmy Awards for such television plays as “Patterns” (1955) and “Requiem for a Heavyweight” (1956).

In 1959 he created, wrote and produced the first of his 'The Twilight Zone' anthology series, on which he also appeared as host; his dark figure and gravelly tones became very familiar to viewers. The series, mainly fantasy dramas with some science fiction, lasted five years and came as a breath of fresh air to fans of fantasy and science fiction, who had previously had little television material available. Over the course of its five seasons, 'The Twilight Zone' won two Emmys for Outstanding Writing Achievement in Drama, and three Hugo Awards for Best Dramatic Presentation. In 1970 he tried to repeat this success with a similar series, 'Rod Serling's Night Gallery', but it lasted only until 1972. Two of his scripts from the show were also nominated for Emmys.
In addition to his television work, which included writing many episodes for both The Twilight Zone and Night Gallery, Serling wrote a number of film scripts such as those for "Requiem for a Heavyweight" (1963; based on his television script), John Frankenheimer's "Seven Days in May" (1964) and the original version of "Planet of the Apes" (1968). Serling wrote some of his teleplays into short-story form and published them in collections: Stories from 'The Twilight Zone' (1960), More Stories from The Twilight Zone (1961), New Stories from The Twilight Zone (1962) and many more. After his death, Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone Magazine (1981-9) achieved prominence in the fantasy/horror field.

Selected Filmography:
“Patterns,” Kraft Television Theatre (1955)
“Requiem for a Heavyweight,” Playhouse 90 (1956)
“The Comedian,” Playhouse 90 (1957)
The Twilight Zone (1959 – 1964)
Planet of the Apes (1968)
Rod Serling’s Night Gallery (1970 – 1973)

Selected Bibliography:
The Twilight Zone Companion (1989)

Courtesy of the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Copyright © John Clute and Peter Nicholls 1993, 1999, published by Orbit, an imprint of the Time Warner Book Group UK.

Serling's influence can still be felt more than thirty years after his death in Toobworld. American viewers of 'Doctor Who' will understand what I mean when they finally get the chance to see the episode "Midnight" in a week and a half.....

Toby OB


From Alan Sepinwall's blog, "What's Alan Watching" (link to the left, good people!), here's some exciting news about the perfect TV memorial for George Carlin:

HBO will remember George Carlin this week with encore presentations of many of his HBO specials. The specials span his association with the network, from his first HBO special (“George Carlin at USC”) to his last (“It’s Bad for Ya”).

“George Carlin: It’s Bad for Ya,” which debuted on the network in March, will be seen on the main HBO channel this Friday, June 27 at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT).

In addition, HBO2 will present 11 of his specials over two nights.

The HBO2 schedule is (all times ET/PT):

Wednesday, June 25
8:00 p.m.
George Carlin at USC (1977)

9:30 p.m.
George Carlin Again! (1978)

11:00 p.m.
Carlin at Carnegie (1983)

Carlin on Campus (1984)

1:00 a.m.
Playin’ with Your Head (1986)

Thursday, June 26
8:00 p.m.
What Am I Doing in New Jersey? (1988)

9:00 p.m.
Doin’ It Again (1990)

10:00 p.m.
Jammin’ in New York (1992)

11:00 p.m.
Back in Town (1996)

12:05 a.m.
You Are All Diseased (1999)

1:00 a.m.
It’s Bad for Ya (2008)

Be there!

Toby OB

Monday, June 23, 2008


Our top story tonight......

On Sunday, George Carlin - the legendary comic and the real Voice of Reason - passed away from heart problems at the age of 71.

I'll be cobbling together a true Hat Squad remembrance of his contributions to Toobworld, but for now, I'd like to offer up this tribute. It's the very first opening monologue from 'Saturday Night Live', delivered Octorber 11th, 1975 by George Carlin on the show's premiere.

The transcript is courtesy of the
Saturday Night Live Transcripts project, one of the great places to while away an hour or so online.

Thank you! Talk about a live show! It's nice to see you, welcome, and thanks for joining us - live.

Um.. I'm kinda glad that we're on at night, so that we're not competing with all the football and baseball. So many, man..

And this is the time of year when there's both, you know? Football's kinda nice, they changed it a little bit - they moved the hash marks in. Guys found it and smoked them, anyway! But you know, football wants to be the number-one sport, the national pastime. And I think it already is, really, because football represents something we are - we are Europe, Jr.

When you get right down to it, we're Europe, Jr. We play a Europe game. What was the Europe game? [ high voice ] "Let's take their land away from them! You'll be the pink, on up; we'll be blue, the red and the green!"

Ground acquisition. And that's what football is, football's a ground acquisition game. You knock the crap out of eleven guys and take their land away from them. Of course, we only do it ten yards at a time. That's the way we did it with the Indians - we won it little by little. First down in Ohio - Midwest to go!

Let's put it this way - there are things about the words surrounding football and baseball, which give it all away:

Football is technological; baseball is pastoral.

Football is played in a stadium; baseball is played in the park.

In football, you wear a helmet; in baseball, you wear a cap.

Football is played on an enclosed, rectangular grid, and everyone of them is the same size; baseball is played on an ever-widening angle that reaches to inifinity, and every park is different!

Football is rigidly timed; baseball has no time limit, we don't know when it's gonna end! We might even have extra innings!

In football, you get a penalty; in baseball, you make an error - whoops!

The object in football is to march downfield and penetrate enemy territory, and get into the end zone; in baseball, the object is to go home! "I'm going home!"

And, in football, they have the clip, the hit, the block, the tackle, the blitz, the bomb, the offense and the defense; in baseball, they have.. the sacrifice.

I don't think it's in your nature to rest in peace, George. But I do know that you should be too busy with all of that celestial stuff you have access to now, too busy to smile down on us. Enjoy this chance to lay back on a cloud and take harp lessons!

Toby OB

Sunday, June 22, 2008


Thanks to my blogging buddy Mercurie (A Shroud Of Thoughts, link to the left) I found out that Friday marked the sixtieth anniversary for 'The Ed Sullivan Show'. It began life as 'The Toast Of The Town', but was renamed to reflect one of the most unlikely stars Television ever produced: a stiff, awkward, somewhat un-photogenic newspaper columnist.

And the idea that such a mainstay of network television for so many years would premiere when the "TV Season" as we know it had ended, seems unthinkable today!

When I chose Topo Gigio, who closed out many Sullivan shows with a kees goo'night from the host, to be
the June inductee into the TV Crossover Hall of Fame, I had no clue that this milestone was soon approaching. It's just another example of "serendipiteevee", I guess.

Mercurie has a rich look back at the show and his profile gives it a much better tribute than I ever could.
So check it out here!

Toby OB


Yes, it's another post about the 'Doctor Who' episode "The Unicorn And The Wasp"!

Colonel Hugh Curbishley was the husband of Lady Clemency Eddison and the father of Roger Curbishley. After the death of Professor Peach, the Colonel was one of the suspects as the killer. During his interrogation by the Doctor and Agatha Christie, the Colonel claimed to be in a different room at the time where he was reminiscing about his time during the siege at Mafeking. However, we in the audience know better - we got to see his flashback to his daydreams about the naughty girls in a burlesque show.

As to what really happened at Mafeking? As usual (because it's so easy to access!) here's a quick sketch of the Siege at Mafeking from Wikipedia:

The Siege of Mafeking was the most famous British action in the Second Boer War. It took place at the town of Mafeking (now Mafikeng) in South Africa over a period of 217 days, from October 1899 to May 1900, and turned Robert Baden-Powell, who went on to found the Scouting Movement, into a national hero. The lifting of the Siege of Mafeking was a decisive victory for the British and a crushing defeat for the Boers.

President Kruger of the Boer Transvaal Republic declared war on October 12, 1899. Under the orders of General Cronje the Mafeking railway (railroad) and telegraph lines were cut the same day, and the town began to be besieged from October 13. Mafeking was first shelled on October 16 after Baden-Powell ignored Cronje's 9 o'clock deadline to surrender.
Although outnumbered by over 8,000 Boer troops, the garrison withstood the siege for 217 days, defying the predictions of the politicians on both sides. Much of this was attributable to some of the cunning military deceptions instituted by Baden-Powell. Fake landmines were laid around the town in view of the Boers and their spies within the town, and his soldiers were ordered to simulate avoiding barbed wire (non-existent) when moving between trenches; guns and a searchlight (improvised from an acetylene lamp and biscuit tin) were moved around the town to increase their apparent number.

A howitzer was built in Mafeking's railway workshops, and even an old cannon was pressed into service. Noticing the Boers had failed to remove any of the rails, Baden-Powell had an armoured locomotive from the Mafeking railyard loaded with sharpshooters and sent up the rail line in a daring attack right into the heart of the Boer camp followed by a safe return to Mafeking.
The Boers decided that the town was too heavily defended to take, and on November 19 4,000 Boers were redeployed elsewhere, although the siege remained and shelling of Mafeking continued. Aware of the approaching British relief columns, the Boers launched a final major attack on the evening of May 11, succeeded in breaching the perimeter defences and setting light to some of the town, but were finally beaten back.

The siege was finally lifted on May 17, 1900, when British forces relieved the town after fighting their way in.

Robert Baden-Powell was given credit for his tactical maneuvers, but I think that in Toobworld, he learned them from studying reports from the US Cavalry.
Back in the 1870s, Fort Burnside in the Dakotas was attacked by Sioux Indians led by a chief named Running Horse. They killed all twenty of the soldiers inside, but were later tricked into believing that "The Ghost Soldiers" all came back to life to defend the fort. This was accomplished by a gambler named Bret Maverick with the help of two soldiers who were accompanying him: Sgt. Baines and Corporal Daggett. 'Maverick' was able to hold off at least one hundred Sioux warriors until reinforcements could arrive, although Daggett lost his life in the process.

By making it look like Running Horse was killed by a soldier he had already killed, Maverick drove off the rest of the Sioux from their siege of Fort Burnside.

It's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, that Baden-Powell decided similar tactics could be employed at Mafeking to hold off the Boer. And he owed it all to Bret Maverick....

Toby OB