Saturday, July 11, 2009

AS SEEN ON TV: MWAI KIBAKI OF KENYA

And now for something completely different.....

MWAI KIBAKI
PRESIDENT OF KENYA

AS SEEN ON:
'XYZ SHOW'

From BBC News, by Will Ross:

The satirical puppet show, which was influenced by the British 1980s show 'Spitting Image' and France's 'Les Guignols', is a chance for a group of scriptwriters and puppeteers to delve into the murky world of Kenyan politics.

The man behind it is East Africa's best known cartoonist, Gado, who has been taking a pop at Kenya's elite for years and encourages people to question events in Kenya.

"I think it's everybody's duty," he said.

"You can't put that responsibility on one individual, as every Kenyan should contribute to expose what is happening and to expose corruption."

Kenya has its fair share of political scandals and people have a fairly low view of their politicians, several of whom were accused of stoking the ethnic violence which flared after the disputed election in December 2007.

Kenya's 'XYZ Show' has been in the pipeline since 2002 but was recently given a financial leg-up when several embassies and the Ford Foundation came forward to support it.

Projects that might help keep the politicians under scrutiny and promote democracy and accountability are seen by donors as worth sponsoring.

There was a production delay in the puppet workshop recently as Kenyan customs officials raised a few eyebrows over a small package which apparently contained the eyes of the First Lady, Lucy Kibaki.

Here's the trailer for the show which showcases President Kibaki:



BCnU!

Friday, July 10, 2009

AS SEEN ON TV: GEOFFREY OF MONMOUTH

GEOFFREY OF MONMOUTH
AS SEEN IN:
'Merlin'

AS PLAYED BY:
Michael Cronin

Geoffrey of Monmouth (c. 1100 – c. 1155) was a British clergyman and one of the major figures in the development of British history and the popularity of tales of King Arthur. He is best known for his chronicle Historia Regum Britanniae ("History of the Kings of Britain"), widely popular in its day and translated to various other languages from its original Latin.


Geoffrey is traditionally said to have been a Welshman, born somewhere in the region of Monmouth around 1100, though one or both of his parents may have come from Brittany. His father's name was apparently Arthur, a man who would perhaps have told his son stories of his Royal namesake from an early age.
[from Wikipedia]

However in the alternate TV dimension in which 'Merlin' and his version of Camelot can be found, Geoffrey of Monmouth was a contemporary of the legends he would later write about. And in Camelot, he served as the Royal Genealogist, so he was still writing about the Royal Family of Pendragon.....

BCnU!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

AS SEEN ON TV: LUCREZIA BORGIA

The debut episode of 'Warehouse 13' (as usual with first episodes, boringly entitled "Pilot") name-checked a lot of famous people who had some sort of connection to the secret government repository that served as "America's Attic". Thomas Edison, Harry Houdini, Henry Ford, and Philo Farnsworth.

But the episode concerned itself mainly with Lucrezia Borgia....
AS SEEN IN:
'The Borgias'

AS PLAYED BY:
Anne-Louise Lambert

The agents working for Warehouse 13 were sent to Iowa on their first mission in order to retrieve the comb of Lucrezia Borgia. Crafted by an alchemist, it allegedly contained the spirit of Lucrezia. And whoever possessed the comb was driven to act out her murderous, sexually-driven desires.

But I think by "spirit" it probably meant that the comb would imbue its owner with the qualities that Lucrezia Borgia displayed, rather than it housed her actual soul. But that's my interpretation....

Here's what Wikipedia says about the old girl:

Lucrezia Borgia (18 April 1480 - 24 June 1519) was the daughter of Rodrigo Borgia, the powerful Renaissance Valencian who later became Pope Alexander VI, and Vannozza dei Cattanei. Her brothers included Cesare Borgia, Giovanni Borgia, and Gioffre Borgia.

Lucrezia's family later came to epitomize the ruthless Machiavellian politics and sexual corruption alleged to be characteristic of the Renaissance Papacy. Lucrezia was cast as a femme fatale, a role she has been portrayed as in many artworks, novels, and films.
Very little is known of Lucrezia as a historical personage, and her complicity in the political machinations of her brothers and father cannot be determined at this time. Her father and/or brother certainly arranged several marriages for her to important or powerful men in order to advance their own political ambitions.

Several rumours have persisted throughout the years, primarily speculating as to the nature of the extravagant parties thrown by the Borgia family. Many of these concern allegations of incest, poisoning, and murder on her part; however, no historical basis for these rumors has ever been brought forward, beyond allegations made by the rivals of the Borgias.

At any rate, whether the stories about her were true or not, the comb depicted in 'Warehouse 13' shouldn't play hob with the depiction of Lucrezia Borgia in such TV productions as 'The Borgias'....

BCnU!



Wednesday, July 8, 2009

NOT READY FOR OPTIMUS PRIME-TIME?

Continuing their domination of Toobworld (after ads for Burger King, M&Ms, and some camera/cell phone), the Transformers have now conquered late night television.

Optimus Prime appeared on 'The Late Show with David Letterman' to present the Top Ten List: "Top Ten Things That Sound Cool When Spoken By A Giant Robot"........



I, for one, welcome our new robotic masters.......

BCnU!

TVXOHOF, 07/2009: BEST HESTON

July and August are traditionally the months in which Toobworld Central celebrates the TV Western. In the old days of the Tubeworld Dynamic web site, we'd put up a massive "expo" of material at the beginning of July and then just take the next two months off.

When it comes to the TV Crossover Hall of Fame nowadays, we usually induct the televersion of an historical Western figure in one month and a TV Western character in the other. This year, as we celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Hall of Fame, we have an induction each week:

First week: The League Of Themselves
Second week: As Seen On TV
Third week: The Tooniverse
Fourth week: Location, Location, Location

So, for the first week of July, we're inducting an actor who made quite a few Western movies during his career, and who had no problem in spoofing his own image by playing a televersion of himself in several shows:

CHARLTON HESTON

"Cursed"
... aka "The Weber Show"
- ...And Then Larry Brought Charlton Heston Home (2000)

"Friends"
- The One with Joey's Dirty Day (1998)
"Space Ghost Coast to Coast"
- Dam (1997)

"America 2-Night"
- 60 Seconds of Fame (1978)

He also had a cameo in the second "Wayne's World" movie, which would be a Cineversal extension of Skitlandia, the sketch comedy TV dimension....... So here's a tip of the hat to the late actor and activist for his entry into the TV Crossover Hall Of Fame.

BCnU!

[Heston is seen with future Hall of Famer Joey Tribbiani and with Space Ghost.]

INDIANA BABIES

Back in June, I wrote about an Indiana Jones wanna-be in an episode of 'CSI: NY' with the intent of de-Zonking the reference. In the course of that post, I mentioned that there had been four actors to have played Henry "Indiana" Jones on television: "Corey Carrier, Sean Patrick Flanery, George Hall, and Harrison Ford himself, who of course originated the role in the movies."

A poster named "P" set me straight on that issue; that there were in fact six "actors" seen on TV as Indy:

"For better or worse a child named Neil Boulane played 'Baby Indy' and "Boutalat" is credited as 'Toddler Indy' in the 'Young Indiana Jones' episode: "My First Adventure"."

So, via Netflix, I received a copy of that DVD and can now show you what Indiana Jones looked like as a newborn and as a roof-climing toddler: I think Dr. Henry Walden "Indiana" Jones is one of the few Toobworld citizens to have so much of his personal timeline chronicled in a regular series - from birth nearly to death. (It's the type of biographical history usually seen in mini-series.)

And as Indiana Jones' birthday was a week ago (He was born on July 1st, 1899.), I'm thinking it is safe to say that he has passed away in Toobworld. Although I'm fairly certain he was able to enjoy his centennial celebration....

BCnU!

THE "AS SEEN ON TV HAT SQUAD": ROBERT McNAMARA

ROBERT S. McNAMARA
AS SEEN IN:
"Path To War"

AS PLAYED BY:
Alec Baldwin

From the New York Times:

Robert S. McNamara, the forceful and cerebral defense secretary who helped lead the nation into the maelstrom of Vietnam and spent the rest of his life wrestling with the war’s moral consequences, died Monday at his home in Washington. He was 93.

Mr. McNamara was the most influential defense secretary of the 20th century. Serving Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson from 1961 to 1968, he oversaw hundreds of military missions, thousands of nuclear weapons and billions of dollars in military spending and foreign arms sales. He also enlarged the defense secretary’s role, handling foreign diplomacy and the dispatch of troops to enforce civil rights in the South. From Mark Evanier:

Mr. McNamara was, of course, one of the prime architects of the Vietnam War at its inception, though to his credit, he later tried to dial it down...and, still later, apologized and admitted some pretty deadly errors.
One wonders if Donald Rumsfeld will ever have the self-awareness to try and atone. His recent statement that he regrets how they happened to foresake compliance with the Geneva Conventions gives one hope. On the other hand, Rumsfeld doesn't regret that they did it; only that they seem to have done it sorta by accident.

McNamara has been played in the TV Universe by:

Alec Baldwin
. . . Path to War (2002)


Dana Elcar
. . . The Missiles of October (1974)


Hanns Ernst J├Ąger
. . . Die Kuba-Krise 1962 (1969)


James Rae
. . . Jackie Bouvier Kennedy Onassis (2000)

Mitch Ryan
. . . "Robert Kennedy & His Times" (1985)


David Schramm
. . . "Kennedy" (1983) I have 'Kennedy' and "The Missiles Of October" on order from Netflix and will soon be sharing other pictures of McNamara....

BCnU.....

[Also seen in these photos: Michael Gambon as President Lyndon B. Johnson, and Donald Sutherland as Clark Clifford.]

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A PASSING MENTION

"Reali-TV" will have a stranglehold on our TV screens today with massive coverage of the circus that will be the Michael Jackson memorial in Los Angeles.

In less than 24 hours after the shocking news of his passing, Michael Jackson's death became "official" in the alternate reality of Toobworld. In a scene near the beginning of 'EastEnders' the next night, Denise Wicks mentioned that Jackson had died while wishing Patrick Trueman a happy birthday.

No, wait. That doesn't sound right. Michael Jackson did not die while wishing Patrick Trueman a happy birthday. Denise Wicks wished Patrick Trueman a happy birthday and then told him that Michael Jackson had died. Much better!

Diedrick Santer, the show's executive producer, said: "There are some news stories and events which get everyone talking, and this one of them. Given the quick turnaround, it’s only a small scene, but I hope it reflects to some extent the impact of Michael Jackson’s death has had."

A spokesman for the soap said: ""We always aim to reflect topical events that we think will strike a chord with our audience and have previously filmed additional scenes including the election of Barack Obama and England’s participation in the World Cup."

BCnU!

CASTIN' MARPLE

I tend to drift away from a TV character, sometimes even the whole show, once there has been a re-casting. Such is the case with Agatha Christie's Miss Marple. For me, she's Joan Hickson; I never did see the series of mysteries with Geraldine McEwan in the role.

But I did watch last night's presentation of "A Pocketful Of Rye" which presented the American audience of 'Masterpiece Mystery' with the new Jane Marple, played by Julia McKenzie. I wasn't at all taken by her performance, but I wasn't watching it for her. Instead, I was eager to see the following actors in the cast:

KENNETH CRANHAM as Rex Fortescue ("Hot Fuzz")


RUPERT GRAVES as Lance Fortescue

MATTHEW MACFADYEN as Inspector Neele ("MI-5")

HELEN BAXENDALE as Mary Dove ("An Unsuitable Job For A Woman", "Friends")

WENDY RICHARD as Mrs Crump ("Are You Being Served?", "EastEnders")

LIZ WHITE as Jennifer Fortescue ("Life On Mars")

PRUNELLA SCALES as Mrs Mackenzie ("Fawlty Towers")

And not one of them disappointed!

Still and all, Joan Hickson was in the 1985 version of this story and that's the one that belongs in the main Toobworld. This series will be off in a third TV dimension, with Geraldine McEwan in the second Toobworld, perhaps even the 'West Wing' one?

BCnU!

THE HAT SQUAD: HARVE PRESNELL

When Harve Presnell died last week at the age of 75, more creative universes than just Toobworld lost a great talent. Most of the obituaries focused on his powerful singing voice and the roles he played in musical theater; and also how he broke into movie musicals just as the genre was waning. Later, he was "re-discovered" by movie audiences with his role as Wade Gustafson in "Fargo".

But this being a blog about the TV Universe, we're saluting the body of work he contributed to Toobworld.

His longest-running role on TV was also his scariest, and with that imposing frame, hard-chiseled face, and especially that gruff voice, any role - even the comedic ones - played by Harve Presnell could already be plenty scary. Mr. Parker was the Chairman of the Centre Council on 'The Pretender', who was willing to kill in order to get what he wanted or to protect his own self-interests. And that may have included his wife, the mother of Miss Parker (who may or may not have been his daughter.)

He played a key role in the ABC crossover night of sitcoms set in Las Vegas which linked together 'The Drew Carey Show', 'Ellen', 'Grace Under Fire', and 'Coach'. In the 'Grace Under Fire' segment, Grace met an older man named Jack and was so entranced by his virility that she brought him back to her motel room for a bit of the ol' nudge nudge wink wink - only to have him die on her floor while showing off with a few push-ups.


But for ye olde Caretaker of Toobworld, his best role was that of Lew Staziak, a retired P.I. who formerly occupied Andy's office in 'Andy Barker, P.I.'. Lew was off the wall nuts and you were never quite sure if he was ever telling the truth. Maybe he was hallucinating from all the peyote he used to take. And at any moment he could snap and go off the deep end.

Lew was one of the funniest characters to come along in the last few years.....

Good night and may God bless.....

Harve Presnell's TV credits include:

TV SERIES
"Andy Barker, P.I." .... Lew Staziak (2007)

"Dawson's Creek" .... Arthur Brooks (2000-2001)

"The Pretender" .... Mr. Parker (1997-2000)

THE TOONIVERSE
"The Lionhearts"

"Duckman: Private Dick/Family Man"

"The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest"

TV PILOTS
Legally Blonde (2003) (TV) .... Henry Whitehouse

TV SEQUELS
The Pretender: Island of the Haunted (2001) .... Mr. Parker

The Pretender 2001 (2001) .... Mr. Parker

RECURRING ROLES
"Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" .... Dr. Sam Lane (1995-1997)

"Ryan's Hope" .... Matthew Crane (1984)

TV GUEST APPEARANCES
"Cold Case"

"ER"

"Monk"

"Charmed"

"The Lyon's Den"

"The Practice"

"Hope & Faith"

"Frasier"

"Strong Medicine"

"Payne"

"The Outer Limits"

"Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place"

"George & Leo"

"Players"

"EZ Streets"

"Grace Under Fire"

"Star Trek: Voyager"

"Nash Bridges"

"The Client"

"The Red Skelton Show"

"General Electric Theater"

"Alfred Hitchcock Presents"

TV MINI-SERIES
"From the Earth to the Moon" (1998) .... Alan Shepard's party guest

TV MOVIES
Jackie, Ethel, Joan: The Women of Camelot (2001) (TV) .... Joe Kennedy

Everything That Rises (1998) (TV) .... Garth

A Bright Shining Lie (1998) (TV) .... General Harkins

Tidal Wave: No Escape (1997)

The Guardian (1997) (TV) .... Clovis McConnell

The Great Man's Whiskers (1972) (TV) .... Ballad Singer

BCnU....

AS SEEN ON TV: MOSES (TWO FOR TUESDAY)

AS SEEN IN:
'Mentors'

AS PLAYED BY:
Jan Rubes


First a prince of Egypt, then later a simple shepherd, Moses became the prophet who led the Hebrews out of Egypt to the Promised Land. Moses was born of Hebrew parents in a time when male newborns were ordered to be executed by the Pharoah. In an effort to save his life, his mother set him adrift on the Nile in a basket of reeds. Ironically, it was the Pharoah's daughter that found Moses (named for being "drawn from the water"), and raised him as her own son.

When God appeared before him in a burning bush, Moses was tasked with his destiny as liberator of the Israelite people. As a servant of God, Moses witnessed God's mighty power such as the parting of the Red Sea which delivered the Israelites from the hands of the approaching Egyptian army.

With God's guidance and protection, Moses successfully led his people to the Land of Canaan. En route, while in the presence God on Mount Sinai, Moses received God's new revealed law, the Ten Commandments. Moses died in Moab at the age of one hundred and twenty, and is regarded as the greatest Jewish leader.

As with all of the other historical figures summoned by that magical computer in 'Mentors', it is the decision by Toobworld Central that this Moses was not the actual Law-Bringer, but a computerized construct; sort of a living hologram. We're leaning towards Burt Lancaster as the actual Moses for Toobworld. (But we're open to other possibilities.)
AS SEEN IN:
"Moses The Law-Giver"

AS PLAYED BY:
Burt Lancaster

Today's "As Seen On TV" Two For Tuesday feature is a tribute to Jan Rubes. The actor passed away at the age of 89 last Monday in Toronto after suffering a stroke. He is best known for playing the Amish grand-father in "Witness".

BCnU....

Monday, July 6, 2009

KLEINE KLEIN HUT-GRUPPE

Allen Klein has died at the age of 77. For a short time, he managed the business affairs of the Beatles just before they broke up.

In Toobworld, he was spoofed by the character of Ron Decline in the Rutles TV special "All You Need Is Cash". This "documentary" was Eric Idle's hybrid of the humor styles of 'Monty Python's Flying Circus' and 'Saturday Night Live', and John Belushi was featured as Ron Decline.

Here's the introductory clip of Ron Decline. Say what you will about Klein, but he knew how to make an entrance......



In case you didn't recognize them, Ron Decline's bodyguards were played by Tom Davis and Senator-Elect Al Franken......

BCnU!

A SLAG-HEAD HEAD'S-UP

Tim Minear is a writer/producer who has worked on 'Angel', 'Firefly', 'Wonderfalls', and 'Dollhouse'. Now he's turned his attention towards bringing 'Alien Nation' back to television.

However, he's not picking up where the series and sequel movies left off. This will be a completely new version in which the aliens didn't land on Earth until 2000 or so. The new series will pick up 20 years later as the refugee aliens, whose population has grown to 3.5 million on Earth, mark out a section of the Pacific Northwest to be their home away from home.

Whether their previous home is still Tencton, and whether they still resemble the "slag-heads" of the original 1988 theatrically released film and subsequent series, remains to be seen. But the central focus of the new show will still be a human cop teamed up with an alien cop with the alien cop's family in tow.
Here's how Variety broke the news:

"'Alien Nation' centers on the partnership between a veteran cop and his alien detective partner, set against the larger tale of alien "newcomers" who move to Earth and attempt to assimilate into society.

Fox 21 topper Chris Carlisle said he believed 'Alien Nation' could rep the next franchise revival for SCI FI, which found huge success in dusting off 'Battlestar Galactica' and reworking it for today's auds. Carlisle said 'Alien Nation' works both as a sci-fi piece and a procedural drama."It's absolute perfect timing for this type of show," Carlisle said. "They're looking for more grounded sci-fi and close-ended episodes, and at the heart of 'Alien Nation', it's a cop movie. It's grounded. And it has a tremendous amount of dramatic possibilities and humor.""
Since we don't even know how the aliens will look in this new version, and considering the timeline pushes it way past the original arrival of the Tenctonese slave ship, this new version of 'Alien Nation' (should it get the green light) will have to reside in the alternate TV dimension of remakes, along with Tim Daly's version of 'The Fugitive' and the recently concluded 'Battlestar Galactica'.

Which is a shame, because I would have liked to re-visit the team of Matt Sykes (as played by Gary Graham) and George Francisco (portrayed by Eric Pierpoint) from the original series at this stage of their lives on the Toobworld timeline. Especially after seeing Lauren Woodland all grown up on 'The Young & The Restless' back when my Mom was still alive and watching the show.....

Just sayin', is all......

BCnU!

TUNGUSKA, IN TOOBWORLD

Here's a report from the BBC:

More than 100 years ago, an enigmatic explosion devastated 80 million trees in a Russian forest. Today, researchers say the mystery known as the Tunguska event may be solved.

They say new evidence suggests a comet -- not a meteor as previously thought -- was behind the explosion. And, as the BBC reported, they're pointing to clouds that form thousands of miles away at Earth's polices to explain the theory.

Scientists claim these "noctilucent" clouds -- formations that are similar to what was seen after the Tunguska event -- reach the poles because water vapor appears to be quickly traveling in two dimensions, rather than three. The phenomenon, experts believe, happens when something like a magnetic field constrains the vapor, forcing it to move extremely fast in the remaining two dimensions.

Researchers noted this occurring when the shuttles Discovery and Endeavour launched in 1997 and 2003, respectively. The launches deposit tons of water into the upper atmosphere.

All of this, according to scientists, suggests a water-laden comet that shed its icy coating in that same part of the atmosphere is what flattened 830 square miles of Siberian forests in 1908,
reported Examiner.com.

"It's totally new and unexpected physics," Michael Kelley of Cornell University told the BBC. "It's almost like putting together a 100-year-old murder mystery."

For Toobworld, 'The X-Files' provided its own splainin as to what happened at Tunguska in
1908. Here's the TV.com summary for the episode "Tunguska":

A rock sample taken from Mars is intercepted at an airport and infects a security officer with the Black Cancer, while Mulder is given a tip about potentially dangerous paramilitary operations but is doubtful when the informant turns out to be Alex Krycek.

Reluctantly, Mulder accepts Krycek's help and tracks the rock to Russia where he discovers an elaborate test being performed by Russian scientists.

From Wikipedia:
Black oil, or black cancer is the name given on 'The X-Files' to a form of extraterrestrial virus with the ability to control the host. In the series, the black oil (Purity) represents a form of extraterrestrial biological entity and an invasion force. It appears as a liquid with the consistency of crude oil, can move on its own, and is sentient. It can hibernate for thousands of years, usually in petroleum deposits. When it comes into contact with humans, it absorbs itself into the host, sometimes appearing to move directly under the skin and over the eyes of the victim. After pooling in the third ventricle of the brain (Vienen), it takes possession of the person and controls them.

In 2012, alien artifact collector Henry Van Statten made confessed to the Gallifreyan Time Lord about "the medical find his researchers recovered from the mysterious crater that had been created by some sort of seismic blast in 1908 Russia - the cure for the common cold. (Of course, his corporation decided to keep that a secret for fear of ruining the cold & flu medicinal industry.)"
(Previously... on "Inner Toob"....)

For Toobworld Central, another alien race was involved in that scene of devastation over 100 years ago. Back when we were writing about the 'Doctor Who' episode "Dalek", we repeated a theory first posted on the old website "The Tubeworld Dynamic":

(It's also one of the Toobworld hypotheticals that another alien [who was] involved in that blast {and survived} had been a Conehead from Remulac. This Conehead, whether it was a male or a female somehow fit into the human society during the early stages of Soviet Russia and even fathered a half-human hybrid child who grew up to become an arch-villain in Gotham City.... Egghead.)

Egghead would have been born in Russia several years after his Remulac parental unit crashed in Tunguska; probably in 1911, the same birth year as the actor who portrayed him - Vincent Price.

Just sayin', is all.....

BCnU!

AS SEEN ON TV: MARGARETHE CAMMERMEYER

AS SEEN IN:
"Serving In Silence: The Margarethe Cammermeyer Story"

AS PLAYED BY:
Glenn Close

From Wikipedia:

Margarethe "Grethe" Cammermeyer (born March 24, 1942) is a former colonel in the Washington National Guard and a gay rights activist. Born in Oslo, Norway, she became a United States citizen in 1960. In 1961 she joined the Army Student Nurse Program. She received a B.S. in Nursing in 1963 from the University of Maryland.


She met her partner, Diane Divelbess, in 1988, when she was 46 — after she had ended a 15-year marriage to a man and had four sons.

In 1989, in response to a question during a routine security clearance interview, she disclosed that she is a lesbian. The "don't ask, don't tell" policy was not yet in effect at the time, and the National Guard began military discharge proceedings against her. On June 11, 1992, she was honorably discharged from the military. Cammermeyer filed a lawsuit against the decision in civil court. In June 1994, Judge Thomas Zilly of the federal district court in Seattle ruled her discharge, and the ban on gays and lesbians serving in the military, unconstitutional. She returned to the National Guard and served as one of the few officially accepted openly gay or lesbian people in the military until her retirement in 1997.

After retirement, Cammermeyer ran for the United States Congress in Washington's 2nd congressional district in 1998. She won the Democratic primary, but lost in the general election to Republican incumbent Jack Metcalf.

An excellent biography on Cammermeyer can be found here.

In the second picture, the televersion of Cammermeyer is pictured with Diane Divelbess, her life partner, who was played by Judy Davis.

It may seem like I'm featuring a lot of military personnel these last few days in the "As Seen On TV" feature, but it had nothing to do with the Fourth of July holiday. In this case, it was because the late Jan Rubes appeared in this TV movie and so this came out of my research on his TV roles. The others grew out of my Hat Squad tributes to the late Karl Malden and Harve Presnell.

BCnU!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

MALDEN: THE LAST HURRAH

Joe Bua featured this clip on his blog "I Am A TV Junkie" the other day, and far be it for me not to steal a good idea! And since this is the Sabbath Day.....

A lot of actors can't be lucky when it comes to their final acting project; no one ever knows when it's Time. I'm sure James Dean would rather have lived, but at least he left us with 'Giant' still to come. It would have been nice if Peter Sellers could rest on 'Being There' as his final project, but instead he's saddled with that 'Fu Manchu' movie.

It's only six minutes long, but I don't think Karl Malden couldn't have asked for a better final showcase of his talents than this short scene from 'The West Wing'. Sometimes it's hard to see the character for the actor, but not this time.



It was only just now as I was putting this piece together and watching the clip once again that I noticed Father Tom called President Bartlet "Jed". I think it all stems from earlier, when Bartlet told him to call him "Mr. President" because it was easier to think of himself as the Office, not the Man when it came to difficult decisions. But no priest is going to hear confession from a job, but only from the man.....

Father Thomas Cavanaugh is one of the best one-shot guest roles seen on 'The West Wing'. And I'm not just saying that because he died; always thought so.

BCnU.....

THE HAT SQUAD: ANNA KAREN MORROW

Anna Karen Morrow has passed away at the age of 94. Her biggest role in Toobworld was that of Mrs. Chernak, a housekeeper for the Harrington family in 'Peyton Place'. (She appeared in at least 19 episodes.)

Her most recognizable role would probably be that of the woman saved by Captain Kirk who later accused him of being a witch to save herself. This happened in the Cromwellian past of the planet Sarpeidon in the 'Star Trek' episode "All Our Yesterdays". (The episode is more famous for the doomed love affair between Spock and Zarabeth played by Mariette Hartley in the planet's Ice Age.)


TV SERIES
"Peyton Place" .... Mrs. Chernak (1965-1966)

TV GUEST APPEARANCES
"Project U.F.O."

"Marcus Welby, M.D."

"Star Trek" .... Woman

"The Iron Horse"

"Gunsmoke"

"The Farmer's Daughter"

"Wagon Train"

"The Rebel"

"Alcoa Presents: One Step Beyond"

"Jefferson Drum"

"Matinee Theatre"

"The Doctor"

"Steve Randall"

"Lights Out"

"The Perry Como Show"

BCnU....

THE HAT SQUAD: JAN RUBES

Jan Rubes, best known for his role of the grand-father in the movie "Witness" has passed away. He suffered a stroke last Monday in Toronto. He was 89. Born in Czechoslovakia, he immigrated to Canada in 1948. He was also well-known for his roles in opera.

TV SERIES
"Due South" .... Dr. Mort Gustafson (1997-1999)

"Max Glick" (1990) .... Augustus Glick

"Kay O'Brien" .... Dr. Josef Wallach (1986)

"Vanderberg" (1983) TV series .... Lewis Vanderberg

"Castle Zaremba" (1970) TV series .... Col. Kazimir Zaremba

TV MOVIES
The Christmas Secret (2000)

What Katy Did (1999)

Rescuers: Stories of Courage: Two Couples (1998)

The Third Twin (1997)

Flood: A River's Rampage (1997)

Serving in Silence: The Margarethe Cammermeyer Story (1995)

The Birds II: Land's End (1994)

Lamb Chop and the Haunted Studio (1994)

Coming of Age (1993)

Devlin (1992)

The Witches of Eastwick (1992)

Descending Angel (1990)

The Garden (1990) (TV)

Two Men (1988)

The Outside Chance of Maximilian Glick (1988) .... Augustus Glick
(Pilot for the series 'Max Glick')

No Blame (1988)

The Marriage Bed (1986)

Murder: By Reason of Insanity (1985)

Murder in Space (1985)

Charlie Grant's War (1984)

Little Gloria... Happy at Last (1982)

TV MINI-SERIES
"Crossings" (1986) TV mini-series .... Isaac Zimmerman

"Kane & Abel" (1985) TV mini-series .... The Polish Consul

TV RECURRING ROLES

"The X Files" .... Vassily Peskow
- Terma (1996)
- Tunguska (1996)

"E.N.G." .... Arno Hildebrandt
- Harvest (1992)
- Running with the Pack (1989)

TV GUEST APPEARANCES
"Tilt"
"Mentors"
"Stargate SG-1"
"The Outer Limits"
"The City"
"ER"
"Side Effects"
"Maniac Mansion"
"By Way of the Stars"
"Life Goes On"
"Street Legal"
"War of the Worlds"
"The Beachcombers"
"Katts and Dog"
"MacGyver"
"Fame"
"The Edison Twins"
"Night Heat"
"The New Avengers"
"King of Kensington"
"Lassie"
"The Forest Rangers"

THE LEAGUE OF THEMSELVES
"Sharon, Lois & Bram's Elephant Show"

"Guess What?" (1975) TV series .... Host
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PROVIDENCE PASSIONS

While 'Passions' was on the air, the soap opera made several crossovers with other shows, most of which garnered publicity at the time. For instance, Dr. Bombay of 'Bewitched' appeared several times in the town of Harmony. (It's what got the witch doctor inducted into the TV Crossover Hall of Fame in its first year.) His first appearance coincided with the 35th anniversay of the premiere of 'Bewitched'.

And there was the time Mary McConnell of the Montecito kept tabs on some Harmony citizens as they gambled in another 'Las Vegas' casino.

'Las Vegas' wasn't the only prime time series to link with the daytime soap opera. During the final episode of 'Providence' ("The Eleventh Hour") in 2002, two of the 'Passions' players could be seen attending the wedding Owen and Syd. Dr. TC Russell and Eve Russell were played by Rodney Van Johnson and Tracey Ross, but neither of them had lines to confirm their identity in the scene. Still, Toobworld Central is taking the position that they were in fact playing their characters from 'Passions'.

JIM:
"Your mother would be very happy."

SYD:
"She ALWAYS talked about my wedding.
I never imagined she wouldn't be here for it."

'Providence'


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AS SEEN ON TV: WILLIAM WESTMORELAND

AS SEEN IN:
"A Bright Shining Lie"

AS PLAYED BY:
Kurtwood Smith

William Childs Westmoreland (March 26, 1914 – July 18, 2005) was an American General who commanded American military operations in the Vietnam War at its peak from 1964 to 1968, with the Tet Offensive. He had adopted a strategy of attrition against the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese Army. He later served as U.S. Army Chief of Staff from 1968 to 1972. In 1976, he published his memoirs, "A Soldier Reports".
[from Wikipedia]

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