Saturday, September 3, 2011



Taiwanese animated "news" story

From Financial Director:
In July, it was the turn of Rupert Murdoch and his son, James, to play the part of villains before the select committee over their part in the phone hacking scandal at News of the World, the Sunday tabloid published by News International, the UK division of News Corporation. Many of the assembled committee members failed to land any meaningful blows, but the hearing still delivered much of the drama for which everyone had hoped, sending the twitter-sphere into frenzied activity and leaving Murdoch - quite literally - with pie on his face.



I'm going to ease into the resumption of Doodies here at Toobworld Central, now that I have a new modem for the computer. So to begin, here is the best image to come out of the televised coverage of last week's Hurricane Irene:

I knew she would! I knew she would! Say no more! Nudge nudge, wink wink......

My thanks to Megan Larche Dominick and Miss Kimberly Massengill for bringing this to my attention.

You naughty, naughty girls....


Friday, September 2, 2011




Rob Lowe - Drew Peterson

Kaley Cuoco - Stacy Peterson

From 'America's Most Wanted' website:
Stacy Peterson, the 23-year-old fourth wife of longtime Bolingbrook, Ill. cop Sgt. Drew Peterson, vanished on Sunday, October 28, 2007. Cops say that Stacy may have left the house in a jogging suit and was supposed to be headed to a relative's home.

She never made it.

Sgt. Peterson, 53, claims he received a phone call from Stacy on that Sunday at 9 p.m. But, no one else heard from her after a Sunday morning phone call with relatives. Stacy's family has asked the Illinois State Police to look into her disappearance since her husband was until recently a local cop, a 29-year veteran of the local police department.

For more:



Just so's ya know....

My modem went wonky on me Wednesday and I have yet to replace it, which is why not even the "As Seen On TV" daily showcase has shown up yet for Thursday or Friday.  (I'm doing this report from the home of some friends......)

Stay stewed......


Thursday, September 1, 2011



'Doctor Who'

Albert Welling

Earth Prime-Time


'The Twilight Zone'

Both 'Doctor Who' and 'The Twilight Zone' are considered Toobworld essentials for what they provide towards the splainins that make up the Toobworld Dynamic. And with the episodes "Let's Kill Hitler" and "The Man In The Bottle", they come together.

The Hitler met by the Doctor was not the real Adolph Hitler. Instead it was an impostor sent back in Time via genie magic to take the madman's place. We covered this once before when we used Luther Adler's character of Arthur Castle for a previous "As Seen On TV" spotlight on Adolph Hitler.

Mr. Castle was a gentle, decent man and he panicked quickly upon discovering that he had taken the Fuhrer's place in History. He didn't waste time in using his final wish to get his old life back. Having completed the three wish mandate for the pawnbroker, the Genie disappeared, but it looks like he used the same ruse on another "Master".

Only this time, the man with the three wishes appears to have made himself comfortable in the role of Hitler. (To be fair, Arthur Castle was plopped into the Fuhrer's place during the final collapse of Hitler's regime in the bunker. This new impostor was settled into Hitler's life back in 1938, when he was still on the rise in his domination of Europe.)

After being dispatched to the cupboard by the Companions of the Doctor, and after having seen the changes being made to the Tesselecta's appearance, the time-traveling interloper may have had enough and used one of his remaining wishes to return to his old life.

Sending in substitutes for Hitler could be a ploy by the Genie to quickly use up his Masters' wishes so that he could be free from the servitude.

It's because of the Genie's magic that no one - not even the Doctor - could detect that this Hitler was an impostor.

(Had the role been a meatier one - the title was definitely misleading! - I would have suggested Michael Palin to play Hitler......)


Wednesday, August 31, 2011


So the yearly tribute to the TV Western in now over with the post connecting 'The Rifleman' to one of the more interesting alien species of 'Doctor Who'. I focused mostly on the first three seasons of the Chuck Connors series as my theme, and even then never did get around to a lot of the episodes from those three years. (TV shows cranked out a lot more episodes per season in those days than they do today.)

I had posts written for episodes which never got published, along with essays on such topics as the six Doc Burrage recastaways and more splainins for actors cast in more than one role (including an interesting link suggested by Team Toobworld member Gordon Long). So I'm thinking 'The Rifleman' is proving such a fertile topic that it will probably be my theme again come next August.

The verbiage would have happened anyway, but a lot of my research and most of the pictures were only made possible thanks to a fantastic website dedicated to 'The Rifleman'. Without it, the whole Inner Toob series on the topic would have been far poorer. So I want to tip my Stetson to Cowgirl's "Rifleman Episode Guide List" and urge you to visit to learn more about this great old TV Western classic.

Thanks again for visiting all month. I hope you enjoyed it!



Here's my final blog post about 'The Rifleman' - at least for this year!

And as many of you might have suspected by now, it's related to 'Doctor Who'......

At Christmas time in 1869 (according to the 'Doctor Who' episode "The Unquiet Dead"), the Doctor and Rose Tyler - along with Charles Dickens - encountered a gaseous alien species known as the Gelth. They traveled through the Cardiff rift from their home-world, which had been devastated by the Time War.

The Gelth needed gaseous surroundings in which to survive. In 1869 Cardiff, that meant in the gas lamps and the dead bodies of humans which were filled with the gases built up from decomposition.

Thanks to the sacrifice of a young maid named Gwyneth, the Doctor was able to stop their take-over of Earth Prime-Time. But he apparently was only able to destroy a few of the Gelth, along with their access to the planet - at least via the Cardiff rift.
But there are other rifts throughout the world, as seen in 'Lost'. Some are temporal in nature, others spatial. Many of these rifts can be found in the American West, as seen in the TV shows like 'Wildside', 'The Twilight Zone' (especially in the episodes "The Seventh Is Made Up Of Phantoms" and "One Hundred Yards Over The Rim", as far as the Western location is concerned), and even in 'F Troop'. (Why? Because I think the musical group "The Bedbugs" fell back to the late 1860's from the 1960's through such a rift.)

Some of these Western rifts were transient; others were roaming, but most of them were probably caused by back wash from the 'Quantum Leap' project facility in New Mexico. And that's where they probably remained situated, locked in place.

So if there were rifts in the New Mexico territory, through which the Gelth could gain new access to Earth Prime-Time, then a permanent one may be situated in North Fork, the town closest to the ranch owned by Lucas McCain.

This would make for a great Toobworld splainin as to why so many characters who visited North Fork looked similar - they were human corpses constantly being inhabited and re-animated by the Gelth.

'The Rifleman' begins in late summer of 1881, so there's no way of knowing if the Gelth had re-animated corpses elsewhere (or even in North Fork) before that. So it seems okay to claim that their experiments began shortly after the arrival of Lucas and Mark McCain in North Fork.

Among the actors who appeared in multiple roles over and over again would be John Anderson, Dabbs Greer, John Dehner, Richard Devon, Chris Alcaide, Peter Whitney, Richard Anderson, Jack Elam, Robert H. Harris, Ian Murray, and Royal Dano. Many of them didn't fit the requirements for this theory about the Gelth. With others, - as with John Anderson, Jack Elam, and Dabbs Greer - I have alternate theories for why so many visitors to North Fork looked the same. As for most of the others, I just have to figure there was something unseen by the TV audience that made them different from each other. (Except for the characters played by Peter Whitney - he was so extreme in his make-up choices that, like Patrick McGoohan in his four 'Columbo' roles, there doesn't have to be any resemblance considered between the characters.)

But there is one actor who notched more guest appearances on 'The Rifleman' than those others (although still far short of the record holder) - and each time he played a different role. And for the most part, they were all killed off by Lucas McCain.

The actor I have in mind to be the vessel for the Gelth experiment is John Milford. Here's a list of the episodes he appeared in (through the third season):
"The Blowout"

"The Coward"

"The Horse Traders"

"A Time For Singing"

"Meeting At Midnight"

"The Pitchman"


"Dark Day At North Fork"

"The Clarence Bibbs Story"

And as I said, that's just through the first three seasons!

If all of these gunslingers were the same corpse re-animated again and again by the Gelth, then the aliens had spent the previous dozen years perfecting the process to re-animate the corpse and possess it.

Gone was the blue aura and glowing eyes as seen in Cardiff back in 1869. Perhaps some sort of image alteration device was in use, which might also splain away the fact that nobody in North Fork recognized his face from previous visitations.

What they didn't seem to correct was the residual memories of the deceased. As seen in "The Unquiet Dead", the old grandmother was supposed to see Charles Dickens give his talk at the hall and that's what her corpse did as well.
It would appear that with each Gelth who possessed this corpse played by John Milford, there was one over-riding primal desire - criminal activities in North Fork. They may not have started out remembering that Lucas McCain was responsible for their previous deaths, but the universe would "course-correct" itself (as mentioned in 'Lost') and Fate would play out the same way again. And then a new Gelth explorer would possess that corpse (if the current occupant also perished with the body).

Because of the temporal rift outside of town, North Fork must have served as a testing ground for this experiment by the Gelth as they refined the process for an eventual second attempt to take over Earth Prime-Time. But ultimately they must have been unsuccessful - otherwise the Old West and all of Earth Prime-Time since then would have been taken over by the Gelth.

Of course, I "blame" the Doctor in some follow-up adventure unseen by the TV audience for having stopped them.......



Here are two Big Macs for you - Lucas McCain at McDonald's......

When I first saw this blipvert during my 'Rifleman' search of YouTube (I don't remember its initial run on TV.), my first reaction was that he could be the ghost of Lucas McCain... come back to get rid of those other ghostly varmints.

It wasn't Lucas McCain culled from clips from the show, but Chuck Connors as he looked at the time the commercial was made. So you could see that Lucas had lived a long life before he gave up the ghost to become a ghost.

But upon reflection, that would fly in the face of the Toobworld theory that the soul of Lucas McCain was born to rerun as Sheriff Andy Taylor of 'The Andy Griffith Show'. (And that he would be reunited with his son Mark who was reincarnated as Opie Taylor.) Maybe I'm hazy on the details, but wouldn't a ghost consist of one's soul?

Then I thought of another, more complicated Toobworld theory which I came up with while CBS was celebrating its 50th anniversary on TV by inserting old clips into their newer shows. Maybe Lucas McCain was a bio-electrical echo feedback brought forward in Time, perhaps by a rogue backwash vortex which escaped from the 'Quantum Leap' facility - also to be found in New Mexico.

The other use of this theory happened in a special episode of 'Diagnosis Murder' when Dr. Mark Sloan momentarily saw the echo of Rob Petrie of 'The Dick Van Dyke Show'. But with that premise, an echo isn't the real thing; it can't react to its new surroundings. And yet here was Lucas McCain ordering a Happy Meal!

I was even toying with the idea of McCain as a prototype for a Video Ranger, a living hologram program. (This theory is my way to splain away the Zonkish references to 'Captain Video') But who would have had the technology and the genius to do such a thing way back then? Dr. Loveless?

As you can imagine for this fan of Miguelito, that was tempting.....

But then it hit me - I was going about this all wrong. I was trying to make this blipvert fit into Earth Prime-Time when actually it belongs in the TV dimension of 'Hi Honey, I'm Home!'

That intro pretty much sums it all up - That TV dimension had the same TV shows as the real world (plus others), but those TV characters could come alive and cross over into the world that used to watch them. (The same dimension showed up in "Remote Control Man", an episode of 'Amazing Stories'.)

The Nielsens came from that TV within TV world and they now lived incognito (for teh most part) in suburbia where they would be visited by other refugees like Alice & Trixie (from 'The Honeymooners'), Grandpa ('The Munsters'), Alice the maid ('The Brady Bunch'), Eddie Haskell and June Cleaver ('Leave It To Beaver'), Sally Rogers ('The Dick Van Dyke Show'), Mr. Mooney ('The Lucy Show'), and Gomer Pyle ('The Andy Griffith Show' & 'Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.').

Those "sitcommies" also had use of a device called a Turnerizer which would give them color if they were originally black & white.

But Lucas McCain didn't used the Turnerizer. It could be that he was one of a growing minority movement of relocated refugee repeats who were no longer going to hide but instead stand tall as who they were - living reruns.

(Well, there would be at least one who wouldn't stand tall - Chief Robert T. Ironside. Sorry about that, Chief.)

Political incorrectness aside, do you see the level of commitment I have to put into Toobworld Central? It's no wonder I'm going on vacation as soon I set this post up to run automatically while I'm gone.

Oh. By the way.... While you've been reading these 'Rifleman' related posts the last two weeks, I've been taking it easy at the Lake. Hopefully if I set it all up right, you didn't miss me at all!
I'm having it my way!



I wanted to go out big with the final "As Seen On TV" showcase in August, featuring a TV Western historical figure. So I decided - what better way than to let the actual TV show trumpet the announcement of our special guest appearance.......?

From Wikipedia:
Joshua Abraham Norton (c. 1819 – January 8, 1880), the self-proclaimed Imperial Majesty Emperor Norton I, was a celebrated citizen of San Francisco, California, who in 1859 proclaimed himself "Emperor of these United States" and subsequently "Protector of Mexico".

Born in England, Norton spent most of his early life in South Africa. He emigrated to San Francisco in 1849 after receiving a bequest of $40,000 from his father's estate. Norton initially made a living as a businessman, but he lost his fortune investing in Peruvian rice.

After losing a lawsuit in which he tried to void his rice contract, Norton left San Francisco. He returned a few years later, apparently mentally unbalanced, claiming to be the Emperor of the United States. Although he had no political power, and his influence extended only so far as he was humored by those around him, he was treated deferentially in San Francisco, and currency issued in his name was honored in the establishments he frequented.

Though he was considered insane, or at least highly eccentric, the citizens of San Francisco celebrated his regal presence and his proclamations, most famously, his "order" that the United States Congress be dissolved by force and his numerous decrees calling for a bridge and a tunnel to be built across San Francisco Bay (which both happened long after his death in the form of the San Francisco – Oakland Bay Bridge and the Transbay Tube).

On January 8, 1880, Norton collapsed at a street corner, and died before he could be given medical treatment. The following day, nearly 30,000 people packed the streets of San Francisco to pay homage to Norton.
Norton's legacy has been immortalized in the literature of writers Mark Twain, Neil Gaiman, Christopher Moore, and Robert Louis Stevenson who based characters on him.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011


I warned you I'd probably use 'Quantum Leap' for a 'Rifleman' splainin eventually.....

Beyond the lifetime of Dr. Sam Beckett, the 'Quantum Leap' technology would be refined and improved until a leaper could pinpoint exactly his target choice to be the "leapee" and be able to leap back quite a bit further than his or her own lifetime.

But the U.S. government probably took control of the experiment away from Dr. Beckett's team to keep it from falling into enemy hands. However, like the secrets of atomic technology and the cloaking device, it would eventually get out. 'Quantum Leap' technology would be obtained not only by other governments, but by rogue terrorist cells and by individuals wealthy enough to start up their own facilities.

One of those wealthy individuals could have been this man from the future, whom we'll call "The Time Traveler":
And for some reason he was obsessed with visiting North Fork, New Mexico, in the mid-1880's.

"Outlaw's Inheritance" - episode 38

"Boomerang" - episode 39

"Panic" - episode 47

"The Jailbird" - episode 73

"The Promoter" - episode 87

"The Wyoming Story" - episodes 96 & 97

"The Stand-In" - episode 114
To the audience of the Trueniverse, each of the characters who were the leapee targets would like the character Dabbs Greer from the future. But to the citizens of North Fork, he looked like the person he replaced.

And while his leapee victims were in linear order along the Toobworld timeline as seen by those around him, his trips back in Time to North Fork could have bounced him back and forth chronologically from his perspective.. His first leapee victim could have been the last role played by Dabbs Greer on 'The Rifleman', not the first.

Here's the order in which I think this Time Traveler leapt into those lives from North Fork:
"The Wyoming Story"

"Outlaw's Inheritance"

"The Jailbird"

"The Promoter"


"The Stand-In"


Researching North Fork, New Mexico....
I think he kept returning to North Fork because he was intrigued by Lucas McCain, whom he met in Wyoming while he was assuming the identity of the local sot, Finney. And so he kept returning to North Fork to further interact with McCain.

Eventually the trips must have been insufficient for his kicks and he decided to get more involved in the life of North Fork - to the detriment of others. (It could be the continuing trips back and forth by leaping gave him a "swiss-cheese brain" and caused paranoid dementia.) For example, as Farley Steel upon his release from prison, the Time Traveler looks to have claimed "primo noche" with Missus Steel, if you know what I mean, nudge nudge wink wink.
But when he leaped into Jack Scully, the Time Traveler nearly got himself killed by the doltish fast gun for whom he acted as a promoter. He was able to leap out of that timeline and let the original Jack Scully return just in time to be gunned down by Ruben Miles.
But the Time Traveler wouldn't have blamed Ruben for the near-death experience; he would have seen Lucas McCain as the instigator for opening Ruben's eyes to his deception. And so he would have leapt back into the fray with the intent of getting revenge on the Rifleman......

He would have leapt farther back in time, to when the McCains were housing and caring for a young couple who had yellow fever. Taking over the life of a former Civil War vet by the name of Brett, he tried to stir up the town against McCain for putting them all at risk. By doing this, he hoped the others would burn down the McCain ranch-house. But Lucas was able to persuade them to fight their fears and go back home.
You can tell by Brett's swagger that he was not licked yet, and that he would leap back into the 1880's in order to take another shot at Lucas McCain.

This time the Time Traveler came back into the life of a Yuma prison guard named Taylor and he came up with a plan to get revenge on McCain. He engineered the escape of a prisoner in transport, making the criminal think it was his idea. And then he suggested the perfect substitute to take back to the Yuma prison in his place:
"That big mouth Sodbuster yesterday. He's got yeller hair, about the same size as Croft. Like you say, if we mess him up some, who’s gonna know the difference? We can get back at the sod buster – threatening us like he done!”

And so Lucas was kidnapped by these two corrupt prison guards and was being transported back to Yuma when there was a falling out between the two. As Taylor, the Time Traveler tried to make a subtle suggestion to his partner that they would be better off letting McCain escape. To his way of thinking, the Time Traveler probably hoped to shoot McCain dead as he tried to get away.

But his partner misinterpreted Taylor's suggestion and saw it for weakness. So he shot Taylor dead before he could tell the Yuma officials what exactly happened. The Time Traveler was able to leap out and send the real Taylor back to take the bullet meant for him.
This is why temporal enforcement agencies were created. A 'Timecop' would have been dispatched to neutralize the Time violator before permanent damage could be done to the timeline.

Maybe it was Jack Logan, or Captain Jack Harkness or Captain Jon Hart or agents Lucsly and Dulmur. But some time agent would have been sent back to eliminate the threat posed by the North Fork visitor from the Future.

The time agent may have even leapt into the life of Potter, the other prison guard*, but was then unsuccessful in killing the Time Traveler as Taylor. So as a back-up plan, he arrived in the saloon just before the Time Traveler leapt into the life of boozed-up farmer Sam Elder and surreptitiously poisoned his last drink.

As Sam Elder, the Time Traveler probably decided to play out the life of the drunkard while he waited for the chance to attack Lucas McCain once more. So, along with his "son", he confronted John Hamilton the banker over getting an extension on his credit. By this time, the poison was taking effect. After being refused by Hamilton, "Sam Elder" staggered out into the streets where he died, too far gone to activate the leap home.

"Where am I?"

To make right what once went wrong, the time agents would have had to find some new life for the real Sam Elder once he was released from the waiting room in the Time Traveler's 'Quantum Leap' apparatus. Since Sam Elder was considered dead in the 1880's, he couldn't go back there. Instead they probably took him to another spot in the Future, perhaps to the 30th Century. There he began a new life, perhaps got a new wife, and then raised a son named Paul who would grow up to become a communications officer for 'Space Patrol'.  And thanks to tele-genetics, Paul would look just like his dad, Sam Elder.......
Hey, it's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble......


* Another quantum leaper rather than a 'Timecop' would be a good splainin for all of the Richard Devon roles on 'The Rifleman', among them Potter the prison guard.


'THE RIFLEMAN'"The Photographer"
When a photographer, an old friend of the McCain’s, is accused of murder, Mark and Lucas find themselves on opposite sides against each other.

"The Mind Reader"

A young man accused of a murder he didn’t commit, is finally cleared by the accidental discovery of a “mind reader.”
From "The Rifleman Episode Guide List"

First off, the O'Bvious reason I'm linking these two episodes is because John Carradine was the guest star, as should be evident by the picture above.

Abel Goss was the photographer; James Barrow McBride was the "clairvoyant".

And the two of them were brothers. Even though John Carradine played them both, I don't think they can be considered identical twins. Otherwise, Lucas McCain would have seen the similarity in James to his old friend Abel. There must have been some physical difference which set them apart that was not visible to the Trueniverse audience.

Aside from the differences in their chin hair and stubble, Abel looks to be older than James (and "The Photographer" was filmed first.) He appears gaunt as well, while McBride's face is fuller.

As for the difference in names, Abel bore the family surname, while James adopted a more theatrical moniker to better suit his "profession".....




'The Wild, Wild West'


William Mims

From Wikipedia:
Newton Booth (December 30, 1825 – July 14, 1892) was an American politician.

Born in Salem, Indiana, he attended the common schools. In 1841, his parents Beebe and Hannah Booth moved from Salem to Terre Haute, Indiana. Newton graduated from Asbury University, later renamed DePauw University, in nearby Greencastle, Indiana. He studied law in Terre Haute and was admitted to the bar in 1850. In the same year he moved to California, where he temporarily engaged in the wholesale grocery business at Sacramento. He made his fortune as a saloon keeper. He returned to Terre Haute in 1857 and engaged in the practice of law with future U.S. Congressman Harvey D. Scott until 1860, when he returned to Sacramento, and again engaged in mercantile pursuits. He was the uncle of author Booth Tarkington, son of his sister Elizabeth Booth, who was raised in Terre Haute.

Booth was elected to the California State Senate in 1862, serving in 1863, and was the eleventh Governor of California from December 8, 1871 to February 27, 1875, when he resigned, having been elected to the United States Senate.

Elected as an Anti-Monopolist, he served as a Senator from March 4, 1875, to March 3, 1881; he was not a candidate for reelection in 1880. During his time in the Senate he served as chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Manufacturers and the U.S. Senate Committee on Patents, both during the 45th Congress. In 1876, the Greenback Party nominated him for Vice President of the United States on the ticket with Peter Cooper. However, Booth declined the nomination and Samuel F. Cary replaced him.

After serving in Congress, he returned to his wholesale mercantile business in Sacramento where he died in 1892. He is interred in Sacramento Historic City Cemetery.

Mims' portrayal of the California governor was not identified as Booth in the WWW episode "The Night The Wizard Shook The Earth". But as he was serving during the time period for the series, we're accepting him as such.

One of his descendents would be found a century later working the carnival on the pier during the "Identity Crisis" murder investigation conducted by Lt. 'Columbo'......


Monday, August 29, 2011


"The Hawk"
After saving Mark from a rattlesnake, the McCains befriend a stranger; but the McCain’s soon discover that he’s not who he says he is.
(From "The Rifleman Episode Guide")
 One of those characters played by John Anderson merited further consideration.....
Eli Flack, as miserable a bastard as he was, still must have found a woman who loved him and bore him at least one son. But eventually she feared for the safety of her child, not to mention her own well-being, living with the violent prison guard. So she may have taken their son and headed East. (Perhaps she had family there.)

When Flack Junior grew up, he might have gone into law enforcement himself. In fact, it looks to have become a family tradition, leading to Detective First Grade Donald Flack, Jr. of the NYPD, who worked closely with the CSI unit in New York. (As seen in 'CSI:NY', of course!)


As mentioned before during this month-long salute to 'The Rifleman', a lot of actors appeared in the series in different roles over and over again. Sometimes - as in the case of John Anderson in the episodes "The Hunter" and "The Mail Order Groom" - an actor would appear in consecutive episodes.

It's because of John Anderson's role in "The Hunter" that we can at least splain away why so many cowboys passed through North Fork all looking the same.

Cass Callicott was a legendary mountain man who unfortunately played a major role in the slaughter of the buffalo. In his final days, the old hunter became obsessed with proving he was better than Lucas McCain with a rifle - driven to the point where he was willing to kill Lucas in order to maintain his vision of supremacy.

(It was 'The Rifleman' version of "The Most Deadliest Game".)

Save for Cass Callicott, most of the other characters played by John Anderson on 'The Rifleman' were roughly the same age. Cass was far older; I'd say by about a generation, which should make this splainin "relatively" simple:

Cass Callicott was the biological father of most of those other characters played by John Anderson.

Callicott had no fixed address. He wandered the West, from California back to St. Louis. And he probably left bastard children in his wake wherever he went.

Lucas described Cass Callicott to his son Mark as having lived like a savage, to the point where he had actually become a savage. (And I'm not using that word in its "noble savage" connotation.) So I'm afraid that most of these "liaisons" were not consensual; instead, the children of these unions were the result of rape. And I imagine most of these women hid their shame by passing off their bastards as the sons of their husbands - if they were fortunate enough to have been married.

But telegenetics being as strong as it is, it wouldn't be long before those bastards began looking like their true father. (As is currently the case with the love child of Ahnuld.)

For some reason, many of the sons of Cass Callicott found their way to North Fork, New Mexico, where many of them (but not all) were killed off by Lucas McCain. It's almost as if the Universe was "course-correcting" itself and using Lucas as its vessel to rid the world of these inglorious bastards.  (Work that would also be carried out by Marshal Matt Dillon and the Cartwrights, among others.)

Here's a list of the Sons of Cass Callicott to be found in North Fork in the mid-1880's:

"The Retired Gun" - Owny Kincaid

"Shivaree" - Chet Packard

"The Hawk" - Eli Flack

"The Patsy" - Sully Hobbs

"Mail Order Groom" - Jess Profit

"Face of Yesterday" - Hank Clay

"The Journey Back" - Will Temple

"Incident at Line Shack Six" - John Gangling

The two characters played by John Anderson to be taken out of contention would be John Beaumont from "The Shotgun Man", and Samuel E. Gibbs, Lucas' father-in-law, who visited his late daughter's family in the episode "Old Man Running". But "Johnny Beau" could have been a first cousin to Cass Callicott; he was certainly old enough.
With Mr. Gibbs, it was a matter of a slight physical resemblance that would have passed unnoticed by Lucas when they were reunited.

These weren't the only bastard sons of Cass Callicott. More could be found over the years in Dodge City, Kansas, Silver City and Carson City of Nevada, and other points West. He might have even sired a child in rape not many years before he died, who would grow up to encounter two adventurers toodling about the American Southwest in a Stutz Bearcat (Judge O'Brien, as seen in 'Bearcats!')

And those that had children themselves would see exact copies of the Callicott chromosome collective surface down through the generations in families like the MacGyvers. One might have become an airline pilot who found himself stuck in the prehistoric past ('The Twilight Zone'). And others could be found in TV shows ranging from 'Annie McGuire' to 'Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea'.

(Some of the characters played by John Anderson in Toobworld who should probably be taken out of contention would be Abraham Lincoln in 'Voyagers!', FDR in 'Backstairs At The White House', and Kevin Uxbridge in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' - unless there was an original Kevin Uxbridge before the one we met.....)

So that's the simplest splainin I have for the multiple roles played by John Anderson on 'The Rifleman', which also goes a long way in splainin away his many roles down through the generations in other shows.

It gets a little stranger with the multiple roles played by Dabbs Greer and John Milford on 'The Rifleman'......




'The Legend Of Calamity Jane'

Michael Horse

From Wikipedia:
Quanah Parker (ca. 1845 or 1852 – February 23, 1911) was a Comanche chief, a leader in the Native American Church, and the last leader of the powerful Quahadi band before they surrendered their battle of the Great Plains and went to a reservation in Indian Territory. He was the son of Comanche chief Peta Nocona and Cynthia Ann Parker, a European American, who had been captured at the age of nine and adopted into the tribe. Quanah Parker also led his people on the reservation, where he became a wealthy rancher and influential in Comanche and European American society. With five wives and 25 children, Quanah had numerous descendants. Many people in Texas and Oklahoma claim him as an ancestor.


Sunday, August 28, 2011



The isolated town in the mountains of New Mexico was populated by villagers from the same Eastern European country. (And probably they were all inter-related as well.)

The country of origin was never named, and based on the names of the two main guest characters - Ott and Bletch Droshek - they could have been from one of those fictional countries from 'Mission: Impossible'. There were so many characters with the strangest names on that series:

Dr. Veped
Raf Tagoor
Vitol Enzor
Envir Qaisette

Here are some of those country names from 'Mission: Impossible' which could have been the homeland for the citizens of Droshek Town:

The Federated People's Republic

Also, from other TV shows:

Argonia ("The Adventures Of Superman")

Boldavia ("Night Court")

Boravia ("Danger Man")

Tavilia ("The Amazing Spiderman")

But - and I know I'm poking the bear in the cage with a stick - I'd like to think the country is Zemenia from an episode of 'Monk'. There are plenty of other connections to other TV series made with 'Mission: Impossible' and so it's nice to share the wealth and give one to 'Monk'.

Besides, Zemenia (theoretically) could be a member of the UCR, an aggregate of Communist nations.



Here's the TV episode in which Mark Twain visited North Fork, New Mexico, with an excellent portrayal of the author by the late, great Kevin McCarthy.....

Today's ASOTV showcase splains away the timeline problems.  And it's the belief of Toobworld Central that in his melancholia, Twain was able to see the Jack Elam character of Russell for who he truly was - a demon!




'The Rifleman'

Kevin McCarthy

Earth Prime-Time

The Real Deal

"The Shattered Idol"
When a stagecoach breaks down on the McCain ranch, Mark becomes thrilled to learn that Mark Twain is on the coach.
From "The Rifleman Episode Guide List"

Lots of TV shows have not only involved their characters with historical figures, but intruded on their personal lives. Just look at the Doctor of 'Doctor Who' as the best example of this - he popped into the lives of Agatha Christie and Vincent Van Gogh during some of the darkest moments of their lives; he may have caused Queen Victoria to be inflicted with lycanthropy; he romanced Madame du Pompadour; and he even married Marilyn Monroe!

But those examples always adhered to established timelines. By getting the McCains involved with Mark Twain during his grief over the loss of his child, the "Shattered Idol" script played hob with the established 'Rifleman' timeline....

Up until this point in the series, "The Shattered Idol" presents the biggest Zonk ever to the inner reality of the series.

Mark Twain said that the death of his son Langdon caused him to stop work on Huckleberry Finn. Langdon died in the early 1870's, about 4-5 years before Twain started to write Huckleberry Finn, about 10 years before the era portrayed in the show.

From Twain Times:
Langdon Clemens was born on 7 November 1870 in Buffalo, New York. The first child and the only son born to Samuel and Olivia Clemens.

Sam Clemens was--like most new fathers--immensely proud of his son.

Young Langdon who would remain a sickly child prone to colds and crying. An indication of the child's health may be gleamed from the fact that he had not, at age 1½ , learned to walk before his death. Sam was ever optimistic that the boy would pull through for he too had been a sickly child.

On the 1st of April, 1872, Sam took young Langdon for a carriage ride as had become the practice of his mother. That morning Olivia was feeling a bit poorly and remained home while Sam accompanied the baby. At some point during the ride the blanket had slipped from the baby and was not discovered until the child's lips had turned blue from the cold.

Langdon Clemens died on 2 June, 1872 from, according to the official report, diphtheria. Yet Sam could not, would not, keep from blaming himself for the child's illness. The loss to say nothing of the self inflected blame, was a crushing weight in Sam's memory for the rest of his life.

Langdon Clemens is burried Elmira's Woodlawn Cemetery.

Right from the first episode of 'The Rifleman', we learned that Lucas and Mark McCain arrived in North Fork, New Mexico, in August of 1881. By the time of "Shattered Idol", it's probably 1885, based mostly on the aging of young Mark. (He's probably fifteen by that point.)

To have the McCains get involved in Twain's grief just a few months after teh death of his son Langdon would need a TARDIS-full of splainin!

Toobworld Central has adjusted the personal timelines for certain historical figures before - 'The Secret Life Of Jules Verne' began with his birth 20 years earlier than that of the real science fiction author, for example, which means he lived twenty years longer in Toobworld. But to play with the actual date of death for a little baby for the sake of a story just seems wrong.

Other splainins - temporal and/or spatial vortices, time bubbles, Tooniverse-like stasis fields (a la 'The Simpsons'), Famous Impostor Syndrome - are either too complicated or not desirable. (I really liked Kevin McCarthy as Twain and I want to consider his portrayal - along with Jerry Hardin's in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' - to be part of Earth Prime-Time.)

And whenever possible, I invoke Occam's Razor - the simplest splainin is always the best.

So here's what I came up with:

Mark Twain was suffering a mental relapse, a nervous breakdown, and had become delusional.

There is some real world foundation for this. Samuel Clemens was believed to suffer bi-polar disorder and fell into a depression in later years, after the death of several of his children and his wife Olivia.

At some point in that stagecoach trip West, left alone with his dark brooding, Twain thought so much on the aftermath for little Langdon's death that he found himself back in that time, but only within his own mind.

As for that letter from his wife containing the news of Langdon's death, Twain probably had been carrying it around for the past decade and that served as a touchstone for his delusion.

Because so much time had passed since the actual tragedy, Lucas McCain knew that Twain blamed himself for the Langdon's death by possibly reading it in one of North Fork's two newspapers at some point in the last few years. (In some other publication if he knew of it before arriving in North Fork.) Mark had no clue, so Lucas must have decided to let his son think it happened in the last few months, rather than have him worry even more that Twain was losing his mind.

There's one last stumbling block - Mark and his friends had chipped in for a subscription to a magazine that was serializing "Huckleberry Finn" and he hoped that Mr. Twain could give them a head's-up on what was going to happen next in the book since it took so long for the latest copy of the magazine to reach them in North Fork.

Since "Huckleberry Finn" was published in America in February of 1885, the timeline for the series at least jibes with that. "Shattered Idol" is probably set no earlier than June of that year since Mark had already read several installments in the magazine by the time he met Twain.

The serialization of the book into magazine form is one historical date which we could futz with on the Toobworld timeline.