Saturday, November 22, 2008



November 22, 1922:
Howard Carter, assisted by Lord Carnarvon, opens the tomb of Tutankhamun.

Sometimes I'm amazed by which historical figures have "televersions" in Toobworld. For instance, I may never have heard of Philip Diedesheimer, the Dutchman who invented the square-set mining system, had it not been for an episode of 'Bonanza' that told his story.

But it's no surprise that Howard Carter should be represented in Toobworld, several times over in fact. He's the type of explorer whose life is tailor-made for the TV treatment. And he was the perfect subject to meet a fictional character like young Indiana Jones.

Here are the actors who have portrayed Carter over the years in various dimensions of Toobworld.

Robin Ellis
. . . Curse of King Tut's Tomb, The (1980)

Stuart Graham

. . . "Egypt" (2005)
{The Curse of Tutankhamun (#1.2)}

{The Search for Tutankhamun (#1.1)}

Pip Torrens

. . . "Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, The" (1992)
{Young Indiana Jones and the Curse of the Jackal (#1.1)}
. . . Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: My First Adventure, The (2007)

. . . Young Indiana Jones and the Treasure of the Peacock's Eye (1995)

J. Scott Turner
. . . Sands of Oblivion (2007)

Giles Watling

. . . Tutankhamun Conspiracy, The (2001)

And in honor of Howard Carter's greatest discovery, a little song (but no dance and no seltzer down the pants):

"You know, one of the greatest art exhibits ever to tour the United States is the treasures of Tutankamen or King Tut!

(King Tut)
(King Tut)
Now when he was a young man,
He'd never thought he'd see,
(King Tut)
People stand in line,
To see the boy king.
(King Tut)

How'd you get so funky?
(Funky Tut)
They said you do the monkey.
(Born in Arizona, moved to Babylonia, King Tut)

(King Tut)
Now if I'd known,

They'd line up just to see him,
(King Tut)
I'd've taken all my money,
And bought me a museum.
(King Tut)

Buried with a donkey,
(Funky Tut)
He's my favorite honkey.
(Born in Arizona, moved to Babylonia, King Tut)

Dancing by the Nile,
(Disco dancing)
The ladies love his style.
(Fox Tut)
Rockin' for a mile,
(Rockin' Tut)
He ate a crocodile.

He gave his life for tourism.

(King Tut)
(Tut, tut. Tut, tut . . .)
Golden idols!
He's an Egyptian!
They're selling you.

(King Tut)
Now when I die,
Now don't think I'm a nut.
(King Tut)
Don't want no fancy funeral,
Just one like old King Tut.
(King Tut)

He could'a won a Grammy,
(King Tut)
Buried in his 'jamies.
(Born in Arizona, moved to Babylonia, he was born in Arizona)
He's got a condo made of stone-a. . .
(King Tut)
- Steve Martin, 'Saturday Night Live'

I was asked if I was going to use today's Tiddlywinkydink to pay homage to the assassination of John F. Kennedy as this marks the 45th anniversary. If "Inner Toob" is still around in five years, maybe I'll do it then. But I've put the spotlight on that national tragedy several times over the years, and I'm not that big a fan of reruns. Besides, I just paid tribute to Bobby, and he was the more interesting Kennedy for me.

Sorry about that, Chief.

Toby O'B

Goodnight, William Omaha McElroy, wherever you are!


Over the last four years, I suppose it's become passe to tip the hat to 'Lost' by using the name "Oceanic Airways" as the airline of choice in scripted shows like 'Alias', 'Chuck', 'Pushing Daisies', and 'The War At Home' once did.

Nevertheless, it's still a fictional airline which probably has some extra props hanging around in warehouses for easy access to use in other TV shows. Maybe all they need is a little noodge in adjustment.
In "The Passenger In The Oven", Booth and 'Bones' were on board a Pan Oceanic jet flying to China. Toobworld Central is making the claim that Pan Oceanic is a subsidiary of Oceanic. For alls I know, it's the new name for the corporation in the wake of the 815 disappearance in September of 2004.

Either way, I'm saying that the two companies are related and thus serve as a theoretical link between 'Lost' and 'Bones'.

Toby O'B


Books need lovin' too, and they could use product placement support in TV shows just as much as cars, cell phones, and soda.
In the latest episode of 'Bones', Dr. Temperance Brennan and FBI Agent Seely Booth were traveling to China when they discovered "The Passenger In The Oven" on board their plane. While Bones had bought her own first-class ticket, Booth was on the government's dime and so he was stuck in coach; and not only coach, but in the middle seat between Charlotte and Nadine, two murder mystery aficionados. While Nadine slept through most of the flight, Charlotte (a wonderful character, by the way!) was engrossed in "The Dark Tide", a new book by Andrew Gross.

"The Dark Tide" is published by HarperCollins. And quel surprise! HarperCollins is part of Rupert Murdoch's media empire, just like the FOX television network is. And of course, FOX is the network that telecasts 'Bones'.

Ain't synergy grand?

Toby O'B

Friday, November 21, 2008


November 21, 1729:
Josiah Bartlett is born.

Today marks the birth date of Josiah Bartlett. He was a physician in New Hampshire back in the mid-1770's, who became the state's governor and served as the Chief Justice of the New Hampshire Superior Court. But his greatest claim to fame was that he worked as a delegate to the Continental Congress, where he was the second man to affirm his signature to the Declaration of Independence.

When the question of declaring independence from Great Britain was officially brought up in 1776, as a representative of the northernmost colony Bartlett was the first to be asked, and answered in the affirmative. On August 2, 1776 when delegates signed the formal copy of the Declaration of Independence, his position made him the second to sign, just after John Hancock, the president of the Congress.
[from Wikipedia]

In Toobworld, he is also noted for the virility of his sperm.....

He and his wife had twelve children: Mary, Lois, Miriam, Rhoda, Hannah, Levi, Josiah, Josiah, Ezra, Sarah, Hannah, and a child that was never registered. As you'll have noticed, there were two children named Josiah and two named Hannah. Both Hannahs died as infants, and the first Josiah died in the same year he was born. Levi, Ezra, and the second Josiah followed their father into the field of medicine.

And it was from one of those three lads that the Bartlett family trees of Toobworld began. On 'St. Elsewhere', the greatest hub in the TV Universe, two characters were named after Josiah Bartlett, with the inference that they were descended from the original patriot. (I'm not sure, but it could be that Ben Piazza and John Christy Ewing were playing the same man.)

Meanwhile, over in another TV dimension, the family name was altered slightly over the generations so that it now only carried the one "t" at the end of "Bartlet". And the name of Josiah Bartlet was borne by the President of the United States in that TV dimension. However, "Jed" Bartlet would be the last of his line to carry that name as he had three daughters with his wife Abby.

I'm surprised to find that Josiah Bartlett was not represented in the recent mini-series 'John Adams', especially since he held such a prominent place among the signators of the Declaration. Perhaps he was seen affixing his name to the document after Hancock, but his identity wasn't noted.

Josiah Bartlett died May 19, 1795.

Toby O'B

In a perfect Toobworld, Button Gwinnet would have been a Muppet.......

Thursday, November 20, 2008


"Do you seriously think I would let a man who looks like a gerbil drive my car?"
Gene Hunt
"Children In Need" 2008

Every year the BBC hosts the "Children In Need" telethon to raise money for the kids. And there are always great sketches that play hob with Toobworld. Some of them must be relegated to the world of TV sketch comedy (Skitlandia), like when Sybil Fawlty took over at 'Hotel Babylon' and brought in hoteliers from other Britcoms. Others are part of the main Toobworld officially, like last year's "Time Crash", the meeting between the Fifth and Tenth Doctors of 'Doctor Who'.

This year's entry for 'Doctor Who' was just a toss-off, the first two minutes of the Christmas special to serve as a preview teaser. But there was one segment that combined two series and which could be seen as being part of the main Toobworld, totally Zonk-free!

The quartet from 'Ashes To Ashes' - Gene Hunt, Ray Carling, Chris Skelton, and Alex Drake - catch Richard Hammond of 'Top Gear' feeling up Gene's car. And despite Gene's contempt for this "miniature scrotum", he begrudgingly allows the "Hamster" to drive it (thanks to the persuasion by Alex).
Taking her along for the ride, the host of 'Top Gear' drives away with the car, leaving a very pissed off Gene Genie. And in the back window, we see Pudsey Bear peering out for a look-see.

In the scene, Alex explains to Gene and the boys that 'Top Gear' is a show about boys and their toys, and that one of the hosts wants to destroy the planet. (I think that's what she said; the accent was pretty thick!)

It's okay for her to talk about this, because 'Top Gear' is one of those shows, like news programs, sporting events, variety specials, and game shows, which exist in our world as well as in Toobworld. And since 'Top Gear' has been around since 1978, Alex would obviously have known about. Hell, she grew up with it more'n likely! (Hammond hasn't been with it these past thirty years, only since 2002.)

And since 'Ashes To Ashes' takes place in Alex's mind after she's struck down by a bullet, that Richard Hammond should show up back in her vision of 1981 makes sense. After being haunted by a pierrot clown and driving pink tanks, basically anything goes in her dream-world. (She would even have known about Pudsey Bear by that point and so it makes sense he would show up
Within that un-reality, Gene, Ray and Chris would have figured that Hammond was talking about being part of 'Top Gear', since the show had been on the air for about four years at that point in "time". But since the Hamster wasn't part of the cast at that point, they didn't make the connection.

So even though it serves more as a sketch, I think this mash-up of 'Ashes To Ashes' and 'Top Gear' can be considered a part of the TV Universe - so long as it remains rooted within Alex's sub-conscious while she's in the coma.

Toby O'B


I had lunch with one of my friends from back home in the Nutmeg State, now an editor at the NY Times. Since I was in the area, I decided to drop in again at my favorite source of bootleg TV DVDs and pick up a few more nuggets for the Toobworld Central Library.....

One I can't tell you about. It's going to be a present for another friend, and it'll just be my luck this is the post he finally looks at here at Inner Toob!

But here were the other three:

"CASINO ROYALE" - the 1954 episode of 'Climax!', adapted from the book by Ian Fleming with Barry Nelson as an American James Bond. (And Peter Lorre as Le Chiffre.)

'TALES OF THE WIZARD OF OZ' - the first Rankin-Bass TV series from 1961, this disc contains thirty of the 150 mini-episodes they produced of the Oz characters as seen in the Tooniverse.

"THE STAR WARS HOLIDAY SPECIAL" - Oh, how could I resist? I'm sure the dupe quality is simply dreadful, but what the hell. (Note to George Lucas - go ahead, release an official version! All is forgiven, and even if there are some cat-calls, you're still going to make a fortune!)

I also got two deliveries from Amazon, pre-orders that got a few bucks shaved off each one just before shipment in time for their drop date. Nice of them!

'DOCTOR WHO': "THE INFINITE QUEST" - I had seen this thanks to my pseudo-kids, just before they had to go back to Taiwan a few years back. Haven't seen it since and the price couldn't be beat. (Unlike the season boxed sets of the live-action 'Doctor Who'! I'm sorry, but over fifty bucks for 13 episodes? Where are we? Parfoon? Um.... I made that up.)


Who was the idiot who set this up? First volume was a boxed set of four discs containing 16 episodes. This has four discs, sixteen episodes.... in ONE case! They could have put the whole season together as a two package boxed set, but NOOOOOOOOO! Greedy bastards!

Not sure what they'll do with Season Two, but now that I have the one episode I wanted - "Who Killed SuperSleuth?" - on bootleg, I'll just keep watching the show on American Life Network to catch any I'm missing. ESPECIALLY if they try to pull this same stunt again!

Toby O'B


On the latest episode of 'The Big Bang Theory' ("The Lizard-Spock Expansion"), Howard Wolowitz crashed the Mars Rover into a crevice while trying to impress a girl he picked up in a bar. Unable to extricate the vehicle with the help of Sheldon and Koothrapalli, they wiped the control room clean of the data and their fingerprints so that no one could ever figure out who did it.

Unfortunately for Wolowitz, that meant he couldn't claim credit later when it turned out that the crash led to the confirmed discovery of life on Mars (but having nothing to do with the song or the two TV series).

The reptilian "Ice Warriors" were probably the oldest sentient species on Mars, but they had to abandon the planet when the temperature changed. This gave the other two species the chance to evolve to their civilizations' heights. So although they would claim to be from Mars, they no longer lived there when they clashed with various incarnations of the Time Lord known as the Doctor.

In the TV Universe, even if most of the residents of Earth Prime-Time were not aware of it, there has always been life on Mars. In fact, at least two intelligent species co-existed there at the same time, until the early 1960's. (That's when the more avian species abandoned the planet and took human form in an attempt to take over Earth.)

The humanoid aliens with three arms could be the fourth sentient species, but they could also have just claimed to be from Mars to simply avoid lengthy explanations for the humans. (Those aliens who claimed to be Venusians, but had a third eye, were in fact Traskians. At best, they used the Red Planet as a launching base for their own aborted attempt to invade Earth.)

The other true Martian species was more human-like in appearance, and several of their citizenry would visit Earth where they could walk among humankind without notice. (One of whom, Exigius 12½, was stuck on Earth far longer than he would have liked. It's the contention of Toobworld Central that he lied to his human benefactor, Tim O'Hara, as to why he was there in the first place. Instead of being on some sort of anthropological expedition, it's conjectured that he was eradicating the last remnants of that other Martian race before they could take over the planet. In this mission, he was probably working with other undercover Martians like Phobos and Deimos.)

After the arrival of astronaut Sam Conrad on the surface of the Red Planet, the Martians realized that it was only a matter of time before humans arrived... and in greater numbers. Thus began their mass exodus project which has been taking place over the last several decades, unseen by even the most sophisticated telescopes in Toobworld (especially at the Royal Australian Observatory).

For the most part, those Martians still living on Mars have been able to dodge notice from the Earthlings even when the Rovers first started exploring in the late 1990's. With their advanced intellects, the Martians were able to successfully evade detection by the unmanned vehicles by anticipating their destinations and even guiding the Rovers as to what they were allowed to "see".
However, not even the most brilliant of Martian minds could have foreseen that one horny geek would gum up the works and send the Rover crashing into a ditch. Unprepared for that contingency, the Martians failed to remove the evidence of their presence from that ditch (which for alls I know, was used as a land-fill by the Martians).

This has been all speculation, of course. But if I could have proven it, it would have taken all the fun out of it. And where's the sport in that?


'The Big Bang Theory'
"The Lizard-Spock Strategem"

'My Favorite Martian'
(entire series)

'The Twilight Zone'
"People Are Alike All Over"
"Will The Real Martian Please Stand Up?"

'Doctor Who'
"The Ice Warriors"
"The Seeds Of Death"

'Alfred Hitchcock Presents'
"Human Interest Story"

'The Outer Limits'
"Controlled Experiment"

(entire series)

(entire series)

Toby O'B


November 20, 1925:
Robert F. Kennedy, American politician, is born.

Here's a thumbnail biography from Wikipedia:

Robert Francis "Bobby" Kennedy (November 20, 1925 – June 6, 1968), also called RFK, was the United States Attorney General from 1961 to 1964 and a US Senator from New York from 1965 until his assassination in 1968. He was one of U.S. President John F. Kennedy's younger brothers, and also one of his most trusted advisers and worked closely with the president during the Cuban Missile Crisis. He also made a significant contribution to the African-American Civil Rights Movement.

After his brother's assassination in late 1963, Kennedy continued as Attorney General under President Johnson for nine months. He resigned in September 1964 and was elected to the United States Senate from New York that November. He broke with Johnson over the Vietnam War, among other issues.

After Eugene McCarthy nearly defeated Johnson in the New Hampshire Primary in early 1968, Kennedy announced his own campaign for president, seeking the nomination of the Democratic Party. Kennedy defeated McCarthy in the critical California primary but was shot shortly after midnight of June 5, 1968, dying on June 6. On June 9, President Johnson assigned security staff to all Presidential candidates and declared an official day of national mourning in response to the public grief following Kennedy's death.

Various moments in Robert Kennedy's life have been portrayed in Toobworld over the years, usually in the shadow of his older brother Jack's story. But with "RFK" in 2002, he was given the spotlight, with Linus Roache, now of 'Law & Order', in the lead role. This is why Roache has been chosen to represent RFK in the Tele-Folks Directory of Toobworld.

Here's the list of actors who've portrayed Robert F. Kennedy on TV:

Sam Chew Jr.
. . . Tail Gunner Joe (1977)

Cliff De Young
. . . "King" (1978)

Timothy C. Furlong
. . . "Unsolved History" (2002)
{Robert F. Kennedy Assassination (#2.13)}

David Marshall Grant
. . . Citizen Cohn (1992)

Brian Hill
. . . Keep the Faith, Baby (2002)

James F. Kelly
. . . J. Edgar Hoover (1987)

Robert Knepper
. . . Jackie, Ethel, Joan: The Women of Camelot (2001)

Peter Krantz
. . . Sugartime (1995)

Jim McMullan
. . . Francis Gary Powers: The True Story of the U-2 Spy Incident (1976)

Linus Roache
. . . RFK (2002)

John Shea
. . . "Kennedy" (1983)

Martin Sheen
. . . Missiles of October, The (1974)

Cotter Smith
. . . Blood Feud (1983)

Toby O'B

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


November 19, 1863:
American Civil War: U.S. President Abraham Lincoln delivers the Gettysburg Address at the military cemetery dedication ceremony at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Wikipedia had this to say about the Gettysburg Address:

The Gettysburg Address is a speech by U.S. President Abraham Lincoln and one of the most quoted speeches in United States history. It was delivered at the dedication of the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on the afternoon of Thursday, November 19, 1863, during the American Civil War, four and a half months after the Union armies defeated those of the Confederacy at the decisive Battle of Gettysburg.

Abraham Lincoln's carefully crafted address, secondary to other presentations that day, came to be regarded as one of the greatest speeches in American history. In just over two minutes, Lincoln invoked the principles of human equality espoused by the Declaration of Independence and redefined the Civil War as a struggle not merely for the Union, but as "a new birth of freedom" that would bring true equality to all of its citizens, and that would also create a unified nation in which states' rights were no longer dominant.

Here is the speech in its generally accepted form:

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation, so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
[Lincoln is seen in the center of this photograph at the dedication ceremony.]

Carl Sandburg's account of the speech and its impact and import rises above analysis to become poetry:

He has stood that day, the world's foremost spokesman of popular government, saying that democracy was yet worth fighting for. He had spoken as one in mist who might head on deeper yet into the mist. He incarnated the assurances and pretenses of popular government, implied that it could and might perish from the earth. What he meant by "a new birth of freedom" for the nation could have a thousand interpretations. The taller riddles of democracy stood up out of the address. It had the dream touch of vast and furious events epitomized for any foreteller to read what was to come. He did not assume that the drafted soldiers, substitutes, and bounty-paid privates had died willingly under Lee's shot and shell, in deliberate consecration of themselves to the Union cause. His cadences sang the ancient song that where there is freedom men have fought and sacrificed for it, and that freedom is worth men's dying for. For the first time since he became President he had on a dramatic occasion declaimed, howsoever it might be read, Jefferson's proposition which had been a slogan of the Revolutionary War - "All men are created equal" - leaving no inference other than that he regarded the Negro slave as a man. His outwardly smooth sentences were inside of them gnarled and tough with the enigmas of the American experiment.

President Abraham Lincoln and his address at Gettysburg play a small but interesting role in Toobworld, tucked away in a sitcom episode of all places. Rob Petrie's great-uncle, Hezekiah Petrie, was born in Gettysburg in 1863, probably no more than two weeks before the address. He lived to be at least 100 years of age, and left a living will for his favorite relative (even though he had not seen Rob since the writer was 13 years old). In the movie, Hezekiah presented his bequest as a riddle, singing "Me And My Shadow" before letting Rob know that his rolltop desk and all its contents were his.

It took Rob and Laura some time before they finally realized the true value of the desk's contents: there was a framed photograph of Hezekiah as a baby, held by his father. But once the frame was removed, one could see not only that Abraham Lincoln was in the background ("all alone and feeling blue"), but that the picture had been taken by Matthew Brady! Apparently it was taken in the hotel where the President was staying. (Whether it was after or before the dedication ceremony, I don't know.)
So even though he was just a newborn at the time, a relative of Rob Petrie's had been present in Gettysburg at one of the most famous moments in the nation's history.
And because Lincoln is turned away in the photograph, there are no recastaway problems in saying it's the same tele-version of Lincoln as seen in such shows as 'The Time Tunnel', 'Sunday Showcase' and 'Captains And The Kings' (as played by Ford Rainey).
Toby O'B


Now that Marshall is working at Barney's firm on 'How I Met Your Mother', they've developed a code word ("conference call") to get out of work and go up to the roof to drink beer. (And Barney also uses that time to crush the beer cans and throw them at the pigeons.)

During one such trip up there, Marshall had an epiphany: they were living the corporate dream of drinking on the job and as he told Barney, they were now just like 'Mad Men'.
Barney: "We ARE mad men..."
Marshall: "Yeah, it's just like the show."
Barney: "What show?"

I typed that out the way I wanted to hear it. Of course, the reference was supposed to be to 'Mad Men', the show about the grey flanneled executives of Madison Avenue advertising in the early '60s, but I'm still hoping (against hope) that I can keep 'Mad Men' in the main Toobworld. So I need to see that Zonk eliminated.

In the perfect Toobworld, Marshall was just making reference to the fact that by drinking on the roof in the middle of the day, they were plain old garden-variety madmen. And Barney agreed. But then, when Marshall says it's just like the show, the Toobworld interpretation would be that he's referring to some other show known in the TV Universe, but not watched by us here at home in the real world.

Of course, ever since 'Mad Men' showed that clip from 'The Defenders' and actually talked about it - naming the episode and relating other specific details about it - I'm thinking they just want to be seen more aligned with the real world than to the artifice of Toobworld; that everything but the characters of their show should be the real deal. So it's more than likely I will have to banish 'Mad Men' from our little sandbox; probably send it off to reside in the alternate dimension for 'The West Wing', since it's unlikely 'Mad Men' will last long enough to encroach into the years of the Owen Lassiter presidency.

And if that's the case, then it's only fair play that 'How I Met Your Mother' can refer to 'Mad Men' as a TV show, since 'Mad Men' refers to 'The Defenders' as a TV show as well.

Toby O'B

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Television can teach us life lessons. It's something I try to impart with the Daily Tiddlywinkydink. And last night's episode of 'How I Met Your Mother' taught us a little something about nature.....
Pigeons are smarter than you think. And they know how to hold a grudge......

Toby O'B

"Pigeons? I don't like pigeons.
They have no respect for public art
Niles Crane


November 18, 1307:
According to legend, William Tell shoots an apple off of his son's head.

Wikipedia takes aim at the legend:

William Tell is a legendary hero of disputed historical authenticity who is said to have lived in the alpine Canton of Uri in Switzerland in the early 14th century.

William Tell from Bürglen was known as an expert marksman with the crossbow. At the time, the Habsburg emperors were seeking to dominate Uri. Hermann Gessler, the newly appointed Austrian Vogt of Altdorf raised a pole in the village's central square with his hat on top and demanded that all the local townsfolk bow before it. As Tell passed by without bowing, he was arrested. He received the punishment of being forced to shoot an apple off the head of his son, Walter, or else both would be executed.

Tell had been promised freedom if he shot the apple. On November 18, 1307, Tell split the fruit with a single bolt from his crossbow, without mishap. When Gessler queried him about the purpose of the second bolt in his quiver, Tell answered that if he had ended up killing his son in that trial, he would have turned the crossbow on Gessler himself.
Gessler became enraged at that comment, and had Tell bound and brought to his ship to be taken to his castle at Küssnacht. In a storm on Lake Lucerne, Tell managed to escape. On land, he went to Küssnacht, and when Gessler arrived, Tell shot him with the crossbow.

Tell's defiance of Gessler sparked a rebellion leading to the formation of the Swiss Confederation.

Tell fought in the Battle of Morgarten in 1315. He died in 1354 while trying to save a child from drowning in the Schächenbach, an alpine river in Ur.

Tell has been portrayed in the TV Universe several times, with three TV series dedicated to his legend. The first series, from the 1950s and starring Conrad Phillips, stands as the official version for William Tell's life in the main Toobworld. The later shows, 'Crossbow' with Will Lyman and another eponymous series with Kieren Hutchison in the title role, must be delegated to alternate TV dimensions (as would be the single episode performances by Ed Begley Jr. and Tibor Bitskey).
Ed Begley Jr.
. . . "Adventures from the Book of Virtues" (1996)
{Courage (#1.5)}

Tibor Bitskey
. . . "Fürkész történetei" (1983)
{Az alma (#1.9)}

Kieren Hutchison
. . . "Legend of William Tell, The" (1998)

Will Lyman
. . . "Crossbow" (1987)

Will Lyman
. . . Adventures of William Tell (1986)
[This was the pilot film for the series 'Crossbow'.]

Conrad Phillips
. . . "William Tell" (1958)

Today also marks the thirtieth anniversary of the massacre at Jonestown in Guyana, but that was far too depressing to dwell on here at Inner Toob. I'll leave that to cousin Soledad and other members of the news media......

Toby O'B

Monday, November 17, 2008

WHEN HE'S 64....

Today is Danny DeVito's birthday. He's reached that Beatles milestone.

In celebration, here's a quick peek at his birthday suit. Or at least part of it.

Are you looking at his bum, you cheeky monkeys?

Toby O'B

[Thanks to Scotty of TV Tanline - link to the left! - for the image, which came from a recent episode of 'It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia'....]


The end of the year is fast approaching, when Toobworld Central will be handing out the annual Toobits awards. And it took this long to find the Best new villain. (I don't think there'll be any other possibilities cropping up before the end of the year.)

This past week's episode of 'Sanctuary' introduced us to another member of "The Five", a quintet of Victorian scientists who used their own version of Promycin on themselves, but this serum was made from the refined blood of the extinct vampire race known as Sanguiris Vampyr (not sure on the spelling).

Besides Dr. Helen Magnus and John Druitt, a third member of The Five was Nikola Tesla, and the actual historical figure to boot. Except for his injection of the vampire serum, the series didn't create any major difference between his real life and his life in Toobworld - at least, not until when he supposedly died......

Here's Wikipedia's account about the basic info regarding Tesla's life and death:

Nicola Tesla (10 July 1856 – 7 January 1943) was an inventor and a mechanical and electrical engineer. Born in Smiljan, Croatian Krajina, Austrian Empire, he was an ethnic Serb subject of the Austrian Empire and later became an American citizen. Tesla is often described as the most important scientist and inventor of the modern age, a man who "shed light over the face of Earth". He is best known for many revolutionary contributions in the field of electricity and magnetism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Tesla's patents and theoretical work formed the basis of modern alternating current electric power (AC) systems, including the polyphase power distribution systems and the AC motor, with which he helped usher in the Second Industrial Revolution. Contemporary biographers of Tesla have regarded him as "The Father of Physics", "The man who invented the twentieth century" and "the patron saint of modern electricity." After his demonstration of wireless communication (radio) in 1894 and after being the victor in the "War of Currents", he was widely respected as one of the greatest electrical engineers who worked in America.

Much of his early work pioneered modern electrical engineering and many of his discoveries were of groundbreaking importance. During this period, in the United States, Tesla's fame rivaled that of any other inventor or scientist in history or popular culture, but due to his eccentric personality and his seemingly unbelievable and sometimes bizarre claims about possible scientific and technological developments, Tesla was ultimately ostracized and regarded as a mad scientist. Never having put much focus on his finances, Tesla died impoverished at the age of 86.

Tesla died of heart failure alone in room 3327 of the New Yorker Hotel, some time between the evening of 5 January and the morning of 8 January 1943, at the age of 86. Despite having sold his AC electricity patents, Tesla was destitute and died with significant debts. Later that year the US Supreme Court upheld Tesla's patent number, in effect recognizing him as the inventor of radio.

Immediately after Tesla's death became known, the government's Alien Property Custodian office took possession of his papers and property, despite his US citizenship. His safe at the hotel was also opened. At the time of his death, Tesla had been continuing his work on the teleforce weapon, or death ray, that he had unsuccessfully marketed to the US War Department. It appears that his proposed death ray was related to his research into ball lightning and plasma, and was imagined as a particle beam weapon. The US government did not find a prototype of the device in the safe.

After the FBI was contacted by the War Department, his papers were declared to be top secret. The so-called "peace ray" constitutes a part of some conspiracy theories as a means of destruction. The personal effects were seized on the advice of presidential advisers; J. Edgar Hoover declared the case most secret, because of the nature of Tesla's inventions and patents. One document states that "[he] is reported to have some 80 trunks in different places containing transcripts and plans having to do with his experiments [...]". Charlotte Muzar reported that there were several "missing" papers and property.

Tesla's funeral took place on 12 January 1943, at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in Manhattan, New York City. His body was cremated and his ashes taken to Belgrade, Yugoslavia in 1957. The urn was placed in the Nikola Tesla Museum, where it resides to this day.

So that's the official version of his death in the real world. More than likely, that's what is believed in Toobworld as well. However, Nikola Tesla didn't die at that time; like Dr. Magnus and Druitt, he gained a form of immortality. Helen Magnus helped him to fake his death in order to evade various world governments who were "peeved" at him for selling them all the rights to his supposed "death ray". (Which he considered a "peace ray" as he believed that if all the world had access to it, then peace would break out.)
Of the three members of The Five we've met so far, only Tesla developed vampiric tendencies from the serum. (We have yet to meet Nigel Griffin and Sir James Watson and learn of the abilities that they gained.) And for the last sixty years he remained hidden away, until he finally reunited with Helen Magnus in Rome, as seen in the latest episode of 'Sanctuary'.

Toby O'B

Sunday, November 16, 2008


The British charity Children In Need held their annual telethon Friday night, and with it came a new offering of 'Doctor Who' to whet the fans' appetites for the Christmas special (all in the name of raising money to help the kids, of course!)
This time out we got a two minute teaser - the first two minutes of the Christmas special, in which the Doctor lands in Victorian London (?) and meets up with someone claiming to be the Time Lord known only as the Doctor and his companion, the dusky Rosita. (Not sure if that would be politically correct now to say, but it probably would have been back then. And after reading that new book about Becky Sharp, it just felt right.)

As the Doctor we know (played by David Tennant) got his bearings, he asked a young lad about when he was. Upon learning that he had arrived on Christmas Eve, 1851, the Doctor was a little put out because 1851 was so boring.
Here are a few things that happened in 1851:

The Taiping Rebellion began in China.

The New York Times , the Reuters news service, and Western Union were all founded.

Ariel and Umbriel, moons of Uranus, were discovered by William Lassell.

Herman Melville's novel "Moby-Dick; or The Whale" was published in the U.S. by Harper & Brothers.

"Rigoletto" was first performed at La Fenice in Venice. (I can just picture Tennant's Doctor having fun with saying "La Fenice in Venice"!)

The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations in the Crystal Palace, Hyde Park, London was opened by Queen Victoria. (It would run until October 18.)

R.H. Macy began his department store.

The first white men reportedly saw Yosemite Valley.

Among those who died in 1851: John James Audubon, Mary Shelley, and James Fenimore Cooper.

And on December 24, the day of the Doctor's arrival that year, the Library of Congress burned.

Yeah...... not really that exciting a year, was it?

Toby O'B