Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Ivan Shreve of "Thrilling Days Of Yesteryear" (link to the left!) sent one of his readers to me with a request:

I’m working on a longstanding project in developing a clip library of film/tv mentions of Vassar, my alma mater. There’s a wonderful variety and bounty of stuff out there. My informants have indicated that there are mentions in Beverly Hillbillies, Sanford & Son, and the Addams Family, but were not able to give me any additional specifics that could help me find which episodes in particular it appears. I’m confident it’s true about Hillbillies – everyone has said that Miss Jane Hathaway was a Vassar grad. Given the frequency with which I hear this I wouldn’t be surprised it’s a running gag and appears multiple times. I am not so confident it’s true about Sanford & Son or Addams Family. As I can’t watch hundreds and hundreds of episodes for something that might not even be there, I thought I’d ask if you knew which episodes (if any) it’s mentioned in any of these shows? I don’t know how contemporary your interests range – I’ve also heard it appears on Facts of Life and Blossom, but again have not been able to determine which episodes or even if it’s true.

He adds:

Among the TV mentions that I’ve located already (and have in my collection) are:

2 episodes of Gilligan’s Island

4 of Dharma & Greg

1 from The Nanny

1 from Designing Women

1 from Ed

5 from Law & Order

1 from Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

1 from Batman

1 from Friends

1 from Beverly Hills 90210 (there might be more so if you’ve got some reference/resource here, would be appreciated; the one I know it’s in is “Highwire”)

1 from NYPD Blue

1 from Mystery Science Theater 3000 – in the movie, Girls Town

2 from the Daily Show

1 from Babylon 5

1 from Cedric the Entertainer Presents

1 from The District

3 from Gilmore Girls

1 from Happy Days

2 from Leave it to Beaver

1 from The Monkees

1 from Party of Five

3 from The Simpsons

1 from Sledge Hammer

1 from Tanner ‘88

1 from Obsessed (tv movie with Jenna Elfman)

Don’t have in my collection but I know it exists:

At least 3 from St. Elsewhere

1 from Late Show with David Letterman

I’ve been tipped but don’t know which episodes or really if it’s true

Beverly Hillbillies


Facts of Life

Leap of Faith

Sanford & Son

Rags to Riches (tv movie)

Women & Men: Seduction (HBO movie)

So I'm opening this up to the readers of Inner Toob. Can you help him confirm that Vassar was mentioned in any of the shows in that last batch he mentioned?

Thanks for your help!



David E said...

Oops - I left off Addams Family - was also tipped to that but no idea if it's true or which episodes.

And I just realized Women & Men: Stories of Seduction was released to DVD so I bought it, can see if it's really there. Also just bought Rags to Riches on eBay - pretty sure that's there.

Anonymous said...

I cannot confirm those (but will see what I can find out), but I can confirm a reference in the opening episode of Book of Daniel, in which the main character and his mentor, another priest, refer to attending it.

--Hugh Davis

David E. said...

One more to hunt down: Bewitched. I'm 100% positive there's an episode where someone jokes about "Witches U." being their pet name for Vassar. But no idea which episode. Anyone out there remember?

David E said...

Never mind - got Bewitched. Anybody out there have a copy of Fantasy Island, season 3 episode 6 Red Baron/Young at Heart? There's one there but the show was never released past season 1...

David E said...

Hugh - are you sure it's the first episode? I just scanned through it and didn't find it. Aidan Quinn's speaking to Ellen Burstyn (his bishop) and she talks about how she has a chair at Yale Divinity but that's as close as I could get. Or do you mean one of the scenes where he's talking to Jesus? I didn't watch those as closely. Or maybe it's a later episode?