Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Two for Tuesday!


'The United States Steel Hour'
"The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn"

Mark Twain

King - Jack Carson
Duke - Basil Rathbone


Alternate Toobworld (possibly musical)

From Wikipedia:
(About the TV version)
Episodes were contributed by many notable writers, including Ira Levin, Richard Maibaum and Rod Serling. The program also telecast one-hour musical versions of "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. The United States Steel Hour telecast The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" on November 20, 1957 with a cast starring Jimmy Boyd, Earle Hyman, Basil Rathbone, Jack Carson and Florence Henderson. Boyd had previously played Huckleberry in the earlier telecast of "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer".

(About the book)
Further down the river, Jim and Huck rescue two cunning grifters, who join Huck and Jim on the raft. The younger of the two swindlers, a man of about thirty, introduces himself as a son of an English duke (the Duke of Bridgewater) and his father's rightful successor. The older one, about seventy, then trumps the Duke's claim by alleging that he is the Lost Dauphin, the son of Louis XVI and rightful King of France. He continually mispronounces the duke's title as "Bilgewater" in conversation.

The Duke and the King then join Jim and Huck on the raft, committing a series of confidence schemes on the way south. To allow for Jim's presence, they print fake bills for an escaped slave; and later they paint him up entirely in blue and call him the "Sick Arab". On one occasion they arrive in a town and advertise a three-night engagement of a play which they call "The Royal Nonesuch". The play turns out to be only a couple of minutes of hysterical cavorting, not worth anywhere near the 50 cents the townsmen were charged to see it.

On the afternoon of the first performance, a drunk called Boggs arrives in town and makes a nuisance of himself by going around threatening a southern gentleman by the name of Colonel Sherburn. Sherburn comes out and warns Boggs that he can continue threatening him up until exactly one o'clock. At one o'clock, Boggs continues and Colonel Sherburn kills him.

Somebody in the crowd, whom Sherburn later identifies as Buck Harkness, cries out that Sherburn should be lynched. They all head up to Colonel Sherburn's gate, where they are met by Sherburn, who is standing on his porch carrying a loaded shotgun and his three legged dalmatian. He causes them to back down, by making a defiant speech telling them about the essential cowardice of "Southern justice". The only lynching to be done here, says Sherburn, will be in the dark, by men wearing masks.

By the third night of "The Royal Nonesuch", the townspeople are ready to take their revenge; but the Duke and the King have already skipped town, and together with Huck and Jim, they continue down the river. Once they are far enough away, the two grifters test the next town, and decide to impersonate two brothers of Peter Wilks, a recently deceased man of property.

Using an absurd English accent, the King manages to convince nearly all the townspeople that he is one of the brothers, a preacher just arrived from England, while the Duke pretends to be a deaf-mute to match accounts of the other brother. One man in town is certain that they are a fraud and confronts them on the matter, but the crowd refuses to support him. Afterwards, the Duke, out of fear, suggests to the King that they should cut and run. The King boldly states his intention to continue to liquidate Wilks' estate, saying, "Hain't we got all the fools in town on our side? And ain't that a big enough majority in any town?"

Huck likes Wilks' daughters, who treat him with kindness and courtesy, so he tries to thwart the grifters' plans by stealing back the inheritance money. When he is in danger of being discovered, he has to hide it in Wilks' coffin, which is buried the next morning without Huck knowing whether the money has been found or not. The arrival of two new men who seem to be the real brothers throws everything into confusion when none of their signatures match the one on record. (The deaf-mute brother, who is said to do the correspondence, has his arm in a sling and cannot currently write.) The townspeople devise a test, which requires digging up the coffin to check. When the money is found in Wilks' coffin, the Duke and the King are able to escape in the confusion. They manage to rejoin Huck and Jim on the raft to Huck's despair, since he had thought he had escaped them.

Certain musical productions do belong in the main Toobworld, such as 'Cop Rock' and 'Hull High', where Life was altered by the intervention of Mr. Sweet the demon from 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer'. But in this case, since there were earlier productions and all of these characters are recastaways, it's best to leave it in an alternate TV dimension where musical expression holds sway (perhaps caused by a dimension-hopping Sweet.)


No comments: