Those who made TV shows in the past never saw the future of what they were creating. They had no conception that their shows would be shown constantly in syndicated reruns. A major downside for them personally was that they've been shafted out of any kind of reward from those early works when it comes to residuals. I remember hearing the heartbreak in Jim Backus' voice in his last years as he spoke on a talk show about the lost money from 'Gilligan's Island'.
From a Toobworld perspective, the creators of these shows - actors, directors, writers, etc. - didn't think continuity would matter. They though their shows would be run, re-run and then done. Who could have guessed that 'I Love Lucy' would be so enduring? And so we have the number of the Ricardos' apartment changed from episode to episode because they didn't bother to follow through with what was established. They even deliberately changed it for a plot point: "I've been in 3-D." she once said to maintain her adherence to the Truth.
And they certainly had no clue hi-def, DVRs and computers would come along, in which somebody could freeze an image and capture it to check out every detail.
In the last year or so, an image of a letter from 'Leave It To Beaver' was magnified so that we could really see what Beaver's teacher had written. It turned out to be an amusing anecdote on the part of the actress about the fact that she had to write the letter for the show.
Which brings me round about to this image: There it is, for all to see, the police I.D. for Lt. 'Columbo', a man who went through his entire series of TV movies (which sadly are probably finished) without ever revealing his first name. In fact, he was once asked what his first name was and he replied "Lieutenant".
And yet this I.D. has him listed as "Frank Columbo". Nobody making that episode ever suspected that the audience would be able to capture so quick a shot and see what was on the card.
I'm not going to try to splain it. Should it even be splained away? What do you think? Is the rumpled detective's first name actually Frank? Short for Francis? Maybe "Frank" is a nickname totally unconnected to his real first name. Or was it a fake, for some reason? And thus we still have no idea what his first name is....
I'd like to hear your ideas, what do you think?
[posted for my buddy Michael.....]