I mentioned earlier that 'The Dick Van Dyke Show' was the "Camelot" of TV sitcoms. And if a lot of sitcoms which followed couldn't aspire to reach the same heights, they at least tried to invoke some of its magic by mentioning it by name.
Luckily, because Alan Brady went on to create a TV show based on the life of Rob Petrie, we don't have to consider these mentions of the show as Zonks. (By the way, in a case of Toob imitating Life, Alan Brady found out that the networks just didn't see him as a Rob Petrie kind of guy. So he finally had to re-adjust his concept and he hired an actor who looked just like Robert Simpson Petrie - Dick Van Dyke. And that's why 'The Dick Van Dyke Show' can be mentioned in other TV shows without causing a Zonk.
Here's my final entry in this year-long salute to the show.....
SIX SHOWS THAT INVOKED 'THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW'
1] 'thirtySOMETHING' - "THE MIKE VAN DYKE SHOW"
Mike Steadman engaged in a daydream in which his life was just like that seen in the sitcom.
2] 'THE NANNY' - "TAKE BACK YOUR MINK"
From the IMDb: The show is mentioned by name. There is an inside joke involving actress Ann Guilbert, who plays Yetta and who played Millie Helper on The Dick Van Dyke Show. Fran laments the fact that Millie never got a spin-off show of her own, to which Yetta replies that she heard the actress was difficult to work with.
3] 'PUSHING DAISIES' - "THE LEGEND OF MERLE McQUODDY"
When dealing with Charles Charles, Emerson Cod wanted Ned the Pie Man to "trip over an ottoman and Dick Van Dyke his ass."
4] 'THE JACKIE THOMAS SHOW' - "PILOT"
When Jerry Harper was hired to be the new head writer of 'The Jackie Thomas Show', he had dreams of being just like Rob Petrie in the classic sitcom. He even kept a framed picture of the show on his desk. When he met Jackie Thomas and learned how the buffoonish star saw the show's concept, he sadly turned the picture face down.....
5] 'HERMAN'S HEAD' - "WHEN HAIRY MET HERMY"
The various incarnations of Herman's psyche called in Buddy Sorrell and Sally Rogers to come up with jokes for Herman to say. (They could have been manifestations of the characters from the TV show, or Herman knew of them in real life.)
6] 'FAMILY GUY'
And then there's this from the Tooniverse......