Monday, September 10, 2012


I'm back at Toobworld Central, but still on vacation. Let's kick things off with a Cineverse/Toobworld combo reference....

There must be thousands of alternate realities in the Cineverse, and that's probably a low ballpark figure. Remakes alone - "Lady For A Day" to "Pocketful Of Miracles", the two "True Grits", "Let The Right One In" and "Let Me In", "Anna And The King Of Siam"/"The King And I"/"Anna And The King" etc. etc. etc...... - would be sent to alternate worlds within the movie universe. 

 But there would also be all those movies which feature devastating effects to the planet - natural, man-made, or alien-induced - which must be kept in separate dimensions.

The Cineverse is not my bailiwick, so I don't have to worry about such things.  The Toobworld Dynamic is enough to keep me busy! I only bring it up because of the main character in "The Thomas Crown Affair". The cat burglar is in two different film dimensions, the first played by Steve McQueen and then by Pierce Brosnan.

(Pierce Brosnan & Steve McQueen)
And I wonder - could Thomas Crown exist in the TV Universe?

I say he does.

In three 'Psych' episodes, Cary Elwes played international thief Pierre Desperaux. And Shawn Spencer became disillusioned with him.

"I thought you were so cool. I'm thinking, 'this guy is Thomas Crown.' You're barely Remington Steele."

Now for us in the audience viewing at home in the Trueniverse, that line dealt more with the gamut of suave characters played by Pierce Brosnan in both the movies and television. But within the context of the Toobworld "reality", Shawn didn't make any reference to either venue. 

So he must have been talking about a televersion of Thomas Crown.

(Whether Thomas Crown looked like McQueen or Brosnan or some other actor is unknown. I can't lay my hands on my copy of Lee Goldberg's excellent resource material about unsold TV pilots, so I don't know if there was an attempt made to make a TV series about the character. I could see it as a possible follow-up to 'The Wild, Wild West' for Robert Conrad.....)

Both movies exist in the TV Universe as they are cited by characters in several TV series. Usually it's just a riff on the title ("The Thomas Clown Affair"), but both are mentioned in an episode of 'Veronica Mars' while an episode of 'House' specifies that a certain ploy was from the Steve McQueen version. So apparently (O'Bviously), the truth about Thomas Crown was eventually revealed, perhaps with his arrest and conviction, and a movie made about him - followed decades later by a remake.

And as a bonus, Shawn Spencer was talking about the "real" Steele, who must have become famous enough (perhaps his false identity was finally revealed?) after the series ended.

Too bad Shawn didn't have a high opinion of old Remy.........



Anonymous said...

In the first season Remington Steele episode "To Stop a Steele", Remington Steele references the Steve McQueen version of The Thomas Crown Affair as a template for a caper Steele and Laura pull to solve their case. So in the TV universe as you define it, and the Remington Steele universe, the movie existed.

Toby O'B said...

Thanks for that, Anon. Now if only we could find a few more references to Thomas Crown without mention of the movies.....