Tuesday, August 4, 2009


For the first week of August, as has been the custom this year, is a member of the League of Themselves - those real life people who appear as themselves in fictional settings on television.

And this month that "honoree" is the Divine Miss M: Bette Midler.
Not only does she have at least the required three appearances in different programs, but one of them was in the Tooniverse, when she appeared on 'The Simpsons' episode "Krusty Gets Cancelled". And like Jerry Seinfeld and Charles Farrell before her, Bette Midler starred in her own sitcom as a fictionalized version of herself.

However, in Toobworld, Bette's husband was a guy named Roy, whereas she was married to Martin von Haselberg of the weird act called "The Kipper Kids". They have a daughter named Sophie - but in Toobworld, their daughter is named Rose (a la the movie she made in the real world?)
It's her marriage in this short-lived sitcom (although it debuted to high ratings, it quickly lost favor and didn't last the season) that makes her an interesting member of the League of Themselves. Not only did she have a different family than she does in the Trueniverse, but her husband Roy became a recastaway: in the last episode, Kevin Dunn was replaced by Robert Hayes as Roy.

And ye old Caretaker of Toobworld has a splainin for that change in his appearance - alien abduction and replacement. Whether they were from the same race or not, the aliens had the 'Starman' step in to replace Roy. Even though we could see him as "Paul Forrester" the 'Starman', Bette saw him as her husband, the original Roy.

It was probably part of an ongoing experiment, as their daughter Rose was replaced as well. (In the pilot she was played by Lindsay Lohan; in the series by Marina Malota.)

Maybe the aliens were planning to eventually steal away Midler as well - their planet was probably dying for some high camp entertainment.....

If so, this is the type of thing their home world could expect:

We can also claim that Bette Midler has a spiritually numerical connection to 'Lost' as well. Just check out the jersey she wore in the 'Seinfeld' episode "The Understudy":
Speaking of which, here's a clip from that, in which Bette Midler appeared as herself:

We've also got a clip from "Jackie's Back" about Bette's recollections of her first meeting with Jackie:

And from that TV dimension in which Germany won World War II and so everybody in the world was forced to speak German thereafter, here's what happened when Bette Midler and Frau Fran Fine feuded during an auction.....

Here is the tally for Bette Midler's appearances as herself in a fictional context:
Bette" (18 episodes, 2000-2001)

Jackie's Back! (1999)

"The Nanny"
- You Bette Your Life (1997)
- The Understudy (1995)

"The Simpsons"
- Krusty Gets Kancelled (1993)

As to why Bette Midler was chosen for August? After all, she could have qualified for the theme of May Queen as well.

It all comes down to a very poor joke on my part, referring to an anecdote about the time she worked with Ken Wahl on a movie, and the fact that this is August....


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