Saturday, January 21, 2017

SATURDAY COMICS - "RUN FOR YOUR LIFE", A WISH-CRAFT


We've got a very simple "Saturday Comics" this weekend.  It's a "What If?" situation with a touch of Wish-Craft.


This is how Ben Gazzara's TV series "Run For Your Life" should have ended.

From Wikipedia:
'Run for Your Life' was an American television drama series starring Ben Gazzara as a man with only a short time to live. It ran on NBC from 1965 to 1968. The series was created by Roy Huggins, who had previously explored the "man on the move" concept with 'The Fugitive'.

[Bryan needed to have a disease that he would die from but which would not affect his quality of life otherwise. The disease selected was chronic myelocytic leukemia.]


His original doctor (seen in the pilot which aired in an anthology series, so Paul Bryan officially has two-thirds of the requirements for inclusion in the Television Crossover Hall of Fame) gave him only eighteen months to live.  But this new doctor saw Bryan near the end of that eighteen months* and obviously lied about  the fact that he was going to die in two weeks because he was a psychotic killer.

Whether Bryan still died from chronic myelocytic leukemia or not is unknown.  

By the way, based on the cartoon figure, I think Jack Cassidy would have been the perfect guest star as the psycho doctor.

Thanks to my brother Bill for finding this.....

BCnU!

* The timeline for this show differed from the real world.  It took three TV seasons for that eighteen months to pass.

Friday, January 20, 2017

DRUMPFSONS



"I'm about to become President, Sweetheart. 
We're all going to die."
Donald J. Trump
'Saturday Night Live'

Mourning in America.....


Where is an ACME anvil when you really need one?



BCnU... I hope.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

MISSING LINKS: ON THE ROAD WITH FRASIER CRANE




"America has always been enchanted with the romance of the open highway. 
Jack Kerouac went on the road. 
Buzz and Tod got their kicks on Route 66."
Dr. Frasier Crane
'Frasier'

The position taken by Toobworld Central is that if a TV character mentions another TV character without the context of origin, then we can assume he is accepting the "reality" of that other character.

So in this case, where Frasier rattles off the names of Buzz Murdock and Tod Stiles in the same speech in which he mentions real life author Kerouac, then it's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, that he believed those two roadsters were real.

Yes, Route 66 is mentioned in the quote.  However, it's also a real location, a touchstone of Americana and the lure of the open road.  So we're giving that a pass.  (But remember, kids: we only pass on the left.)

So accepting that Tod and Buzz were real people to Frasier, there are two ways this could go.  

1)  A TV SHOW WAS MADE ABOUT THE TWO WANDERERS

In Toobworld, Andy Warhol's cultural observation should have been "Everybody will have a TV show made about them."  In Buzz and Tod's case, the idea of two guys driving all around the country in search of America and themselves might have been alluring to a TV producer who saw their story as a vision of the unrest that our society was about to enter. And so Frasier would have known about the two drifters by watching the TV show based on their adventures and which starred two actors who looked amazingly like them: Martin Milner and George Maharis.

2) FRASIER ACTUALLY KNEW TOD STILES AND BUZZ MURDOCK
There are moments in life during prime-time that we as the audience of the Trueniverse are not privy to.  

Examples: 
  • When Khan Noonian Singh first met Pavel Chekov
  • Buddy Sorrell's career in the early days of television, including as host of 'Buddy's Band'
  • Mary Richards' wedding to Congressman Steven Cronin and the birth of their daughter Rose
So as a televisiologist,  I have no problem with the idea of Frasier Crane knowing Tod Stiles and Buzz Murdock.  But I think we should adhere to the Toobworld timeline.


Buzz and Tod tooled about the country from 1960 until January of 1963.  But then they went their separate ways and Linc Case joined Tod by the end of March of that year.  There were several weeks in between early December of 1962 and early January of the next year in which Buzz had gone off on his own.  They were reunited for one last adventure on the road before Buzz left forever

Frasier spoke of both men, so he had to know them both, unless Tod told him about good ol' Buzz.  If Frasier actually knew Tod and Buzz, it was probably during that time period.  And it could be because of their encounter with each other that Buzz began to question the direction of his life.

Frasier Crane always did have that effect on people.

One might think there was a problem with this idea - the age discrepancy between Frasier and Tod & Buzz.  Frasier was only eight years old by 1963.  This tallies with Kelsey Grammar's age, which is what I prefer.  In the 1997 episode "Odd Man Out", Frasier realizes:

"I'm forty-three, and I'm alone."
["Odd Man Out"]

But that still isn't a hindrance.  I know at least Tod dealt with kids during his travels - a thirteen year old boy and his sister living on their own.  So why couldn't young Master Crane decide to chuck it all and run away from home when he was just a lad, and in so doing he crossed paths with Tod and Buzz who just happened to be driving through Seattle?

After that, it just gets too deep into Fanficcer territory so I'll leave it at that.

BCnU!

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

GAME OF THE NAME: THE ROBBIN' DOCS OF "CASTLE"



Richard Castle: 
So, why "Doogie Howser"? 
There's so many cooler doctors you could pick: 
Dr. House, Dr. Shepherd, Dr. Phil.....
Dr. Howser: 
Shut up.

'CASTLE'
"COPS & ROBBERS"

When dealing with other TV dimensions, I don't worry so much about any possible Zonks that might be found there.  

Take this episode for example.  'Castle' has to take place in another TV dimension because the NYC Mayor is different from the one in Earth Prime-Time, who has to be the same one holding the office in Earth Prime, AKA "The Real World."  The mayor in Castle's world was an old friend of the writer, and black.  At the time, Mike Bloomberg was "Hizzoner", which was well established in shows like 'Law & Order', '30 Rock', and even a Muppets Christmas special.  And you'll note that he ain't black.


Henry Jefferson:
Well, don't complain to me about it.

Even after a new election and a new mayor was sworn in, it still didn't jibe with Earth Prime and Earth Prime-Time.  Bill DeBlasio landed the gig and as far as I have tallied so far, he's been mentioned as the Mayor in four TV series: 
  • 'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit'
  • 'Constantine'
  • 'The Mindy Project'
  • 'Girls'
However, there is an author by the name of Richard Castle in the main Toobworld as established in an episode of 'Missing'.  Could be the same guy, only with a different life path than the one seen on our TVs.  


But we do know there is a TV show in Earth Prime-Time called 'Castle' and the details are basically the same as what we see in the actual show.  It has been mentioned in the following shows:
  • 'Gates'
  • 'Last Man Standing'
  • '30 Rock'
  • 'Men At Work'
  • 'Red Band Society'
  • 'The Middle'
  • 'Mystery Girls'
  • 'The Mindy Project'
The televersion of that 'Castle' TV show might not be based on Richard Castle's real life but instead on books he's written in which his own fictionalized persona helps out the cops in solving cases.  (We have precedence for this in the real world.  Check out the books by Kinky Friedman.)

So that's why it doesn't bother me that in "Cops & Robbers", the four bank robbers use a stunt used over in the Cineverse in the movies "The Taking Of Pelham 1-2-3" and "Reservoir Dogs": thematically linked code names.  However, instead of using "colorful" names like "Mr. Pink" or "Blue", they donned surgical scrubs and masks and called each by TV doctor names:
  • Dr. Huxtable
  • Dr. Quinn
  • Dr. Howser
  • Trapper John
Splainin courtesy of the IMDb:
The bank robbers refer to each other as names from t.v. shows. Dr. Huxtable is from 'The Cosby Show', Dr. Howser is from 'Doogie Howser, MD', Dr. Quinn is from 'Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman', and 'Trapper John' is from 'M.A.S.H'. (as mentioned in the show.)

If the rest of the main Toobworld can make references to 'Castle', then it seems only fair play that 'Castle' should do the same.

BCnU!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

TUESDAY NEWS DAY: BARNUM & BAILEY

From the Chicago Tribune:

Send out the clowns. The Big Top is coming down — for good.

On Saturday, officials of the company that owns the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus announced that it will close in May, ending a 146-year run that dates back to a time before automobiles or airplanes or movies, when Ulysses S. Grant was president and minstrel shows were popular entertainment.


From Wikipedia:

PHINEAS T. BARNUM

Phineas Taylor "P. T." Barnum (July 5, 1810 – April 7, 1891) was an American politician, showman, and businessman remembered for promoting celebrated hoaxes and for founding the Barnum & Bailey Circus. Although Barnum was also an author, publisher, philanthropist, and for some time a politician, he said of himself, "I am a showman by profession...and all the gilding shall make nothing else of me", and his personal aim was "to put money in his own coffers". Barnum is widely, but erroneously, credited with coining the phrase "There's a sucker born every minute".

Born in Bethel, Connecticut, Barnum became a small-business owner in his early twenties, and founded a weekly newspaper, before moving to New York City in 1834. He embarked on an entertainment career, first with a variety troupe called "Barnum's Grand Scientific and Musical Theater", and soon after by purchasing Scudder's American Museum, which he renamed after himself. Barnum used the museum as a platform to promote hoaxes and human curiosities such as the Feejee mermaid and General Tom Thumb. In 1850 he promoted the American tour of singer Jenny Lind, paying her an unprecedented $1,000 a night for 150 nights. After economic reversals due to bad investments in the 1850s, and years of litigation and public humiliation, he used a lecture tour, mostly as a temperance speaker, to emerge from debt. His museum added America's first aquarium and expanded the wax-figure department. While in New York, he converted to Universalism and was a member of the Church of the Divine Paternity, now the Fourth Universalist Society in the City of New York.

Barnum served two terms in the Connecticut legislature in 1865 as a Republican for Fairfield. With the ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution over slavery and African-American suffrage, Barnum spoke before the legislature and said, "A human soul, ‘that God has created and Christ died for,’ is not to be trifled with. It may tenant the body of a Chinaman, a Turk, an Arab or a Hottentot – it is still an immortal spirit". Elected in 1875 as Mayor of Bridgeport, Connecticut, he worked to improve the water supply, bring gas lighting to streets, and enforce liquor and prostitution laws. Barnum was instrumental in starting Bridgeport Hospital, founded in 1878, and was its first president.

The circus business was the source of much of his enduring fame. He established "P. T. Barnum's Grand Traveling Museum, Menagerie, Caravan & Hippodrome", a traveling circus, menagerie and museum of "freaks", which adopted many names over the years. Barnum died in his sleep at home in 1891, and was buried in Mountain Grove Cemetery, Bridgeport, which he designed himself.


JAMES A. BAILEY

Orphaned at the age of eight, McGuiness was working as a bellhop in Pontiac, Michigan when he was discovered by Frederic Harrison Bailey (a nephew of circus pioneer Hachaliah Bailey) as a teenager. Bailey gave McGuiness a job as his assistant and the two traveled together for many years. James Anthony eventually adopted Bailey's surname to become James A. Bailey.

Bailey later associated with James E. Cooper and, by the time he was 25, he was manager of the Cooper and Bailey circus. He then met with P.T. Barnum and together they established Barnum and Bailey's Circus (for which Bailey was instrumental in obtaining Jumbo the Elephant) in 1881.

James Anthony Bailey was married to Ruth McCaddon of Zanesville, Ohio. He died of erysipelas. He is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery, in The Bronx, New York City.


PT Barnum, more than Bailey, has had enough appearances in TV programs so that Toobworld Central can share the wealth and spread them around a few TV dimensions.  The only ones from the list below who would remain in the main Toobworld would be the portrayals from 'Branded' and 'The Restless Gun' as Barnum interacted with characters from Earth Prime-Time.  And the difference in their appearances (Carson looked NOTHING like the real Barnum!) can be attributed to them depicted as the points of view of the main characters from both shows.  

With the others, for the most part it doesn't matter which Toobworld they end up on.  But there will be O'Bservations posted for the exemptions.

  • "America: Facts vs. Fiction"
        - Masters of Illusion 
  • (2014) 
  • Played by Paul D'Elia

  • "The Folklorist"
        - The New England Lighthouse Storm, Elizabeth Jennings, Cardiff Giant
  • (2014) 
  • Played by Kevin Murphy

    "Wild West Tech"
        - Freak Show II 
  • (2005) 
  • Played by Tad Atkinson (as PT Barnum)

    "Mentors"
        - Humbug 
  • (2002) 
  • Played by Heath Lamberts

  • O'BSERVATION: Although this is from the main Toobworld, this wasn't the real Barnum.  He was actually a computer generated image, a holographic simulacrum.

    P.T. Barnum 
  • (1999) 

  • Played by Beau Bridges / Jordan Bridges (as Young P.T. Barnum)

  • "Biography"
        - P.T. Barnum: America's Greatest Showman
     
  • (1995) 
  • Played by Karl Malden
O'BSERVATION: Malden only supplied the voice for this documentary, but he would have made for a reasonable facsimile of the showman.  This is why I included the picture.


  • "A.J.'s Time Travelers"
        - P.T. Barnum
     
  • (1995) 
  • Played by Dell Yount

  • O'BSERVATION: Toobworld holds that historical figures encoutered in this series were from an alternate dimension, or at the very least, from the original timeline of the main Toobworld.

    Barnum 
  • (1986) 
  • Played by John Roney (as Young Barnum) / Burt Lancaster (as Phineas Taylor 'P.T.' Barnum)

  • Barnum! 
  • (1986) 
  • Played by Michael Crawford (as Phineas Taylor Barnum)

  • O'BSERVATION: This musical version of Barnum's life takes place in ToobStage,  TV dimension that is more heavily influenced by the precepts of a theatrical universe.

  • "Un, dos, tres... responda otra vez"
        - El circo II 
  • (1984) 
  • Played by Emilio Arag√≥n (as Phineas Taylor Barnum)

  • O'BSERVATION: I don't know too much about this episode and based on the episode description, I'm not sure how PT Barnum fits into it all.  Nevertheless, it takes place in Spanish Toobworld, that TV Earth which began with a victory by the Spanish Armada so that they dominated the globe.  (All caused by the Meddling Monk.)

    "Branded"
        - The Greatest Coward on Earth 
  • (1965) 
  • Played by Pat O'Brien (as Phineas T. Barnum)
    [James Bailey payed by Dick Clark]

  • O'BSERVATION: This is probably the only portrayal of James A. Bailey to be found in the main Toobworld.

    "The Restless Gun"
        - More Than Kin 
  • (1958) 
  • Played by Robert Carson

  • O'BSERVATION: Vint Bonner must have been drunk to think Barnum looked like this guy.

  • "You Are There" 
  •     - P.T. Barnum Presents Jenny Lind (September 11, 1850) 
  • (1955) 
  • Played by Ray Collins
O'BSERVATION: i have yet to come up with a workable splainin for 'You Are There', but I don't think the CBS reporters actually found themselves back in Time where they could interview these historical figures.

I'm kind of sad that the circus will be no more but all things must pass.....

BCnU!


Monday, January 16, 2017

TV-GPS: SPRINGFIELD AS A MISSING LINK ON THE MAP?


When Springfield was chosen as the location for 'The Simpsons', I think it was meant as a tip of the hat to the town in which the long-running TV family the Andersons lived in 'Father Knows Best'.  As with 'The Simpsons', no state was ever designated as housing the Andersons' Springfield, although many people believe it was in the Midwest.  One contributor to the IMDb thinks it was probably Sprinfield, Pennsylvania.  The reasoning?  

"Several times, characters mentioned Altoona, an actual city in Pennsylvania."

But there are a lot of options when it comes to Springfield in America, with some states having more than one according to Wikipedia:
  • Springfield, Arkansas
  • Springfield, California
  • Springfield, Colorado
  • Springfield, Florida, a city in Bay County
  • Springfield (Jacksonville), Florida, a neighborhood
  • Springfield, Georgia
  • Springfield, Idaho
  • Springfield, Illinois, the state capital of Illinois
  • Springfield metropolitan area, Illinois
  • Springfield, LaPorte County, Indiana
  • Springfield, Posey County, Indiana
  • Springfield, Kentucky
  • Springfield, Louisiana
  • Springfield, Maine
  • Springfield, Massachusetts, the first Springfield settled in America
  • Springfield metropolitan area, Massachusetts, the most populous Metropolitan Springfield Area
  • Springfield, Michigan, a city in Calhoun County
  • Springfield, Minnesota, in Brown County
  • Springfield, Missouri, the most populous Springfield in the United States
  • Springfield metropolitan area, Missouri
  • Springfield, Nebraska
  • Springfield, New Hampshire
  • Springfield Township, Burlington County, New Jersey (referred to as "Springfield")
  • Springfield Township, Union County, New Jersey (referred to as "Springfield")
  • Springfield/Belmont, Newark, New Jersey, a neighborhood of Newark
  • Springfield, New York
  • Springfield, Ohio
  • Springfield, Oregon
  • Springfield Township, Delaware County, Pennsylvania (referred to as "Springfield")
  • Springfield, South Carolina
  • Springfield, South Dakota
  • Springfield, Tennessee
  • Springfield, Texas, Jim Wells County
  • Springfield, former town and county seat of Limestone County, Texas, now part of Fort Parker State Park
  • Springfield, Vermont
  • Springfield (CDP), Vermont
  • Springfield, Virginia
  • Springfield, Albemarle County, Virginia
  • Springfield (Coatesville, Virginia), a historic home
  • Springfield, Page County, Virginia
  • Springfield, Westmoreland County, Virginia
  • Springfield, West Virginia
  • Springfield, Dane County, Wisconsin
  • Springfield, Jackson County, Wisconsin
  • Springfield, Marquette County, Wisconsin
  • Springfield, St. Croix County, Wisconsin
  • Springfield, Walworth County, Wisconsin

I'm throwing out the suggestion that it could have been Springfield, Massachusetts.  And I'm basing that on the 'Father Knows Best' episode "Bud's Encounter With The Law".  Actor Stafford Repp, best known for playiing Chief O'Hara on 'Batman', played Sgt. Rice in this episode.  Almost twenty years later he showed up again as a police chief in the 'Banacek' episode "Project Phoenix".

Thomas Banacek was an insurance investigator based in Boston, although the series took him all over the country.  In "Project Phoenix", an experimental new car was stolen off of a train flatbed car while the train was en route from Boston.  Repp's police chief worked in a town along the train route (which does not have to follow the routes laid down in the real world) and Banacek met with him in the woods along the train tracks.


The Police Chief was never named, so I'm suggesting that after twenty years, Sgt. Rice rose through the department and finally was named as the chief of Springfield police.  And because that train was traveling through the Bay State, I think Rice became the Chief of Police in "Hoop City".

I think this is one of those times when such a declaration can never be proven or disproved.  But should more "evidence" arises from the show's trivia that it really has to remain in the Midwest, it's small potatoes.  I can just rework the theory so that Sgt. Rice left that Springfield and moved to the Springfield of Massachusetts, after accepting the job offer after applying to be their police chief.

BCnU!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

VIDEO SUNDAY - DRUMPF: LIFE IMITATES TOOB



A few more days and a new era dawns in America.  Jack Lord help us.

Drumpf built his campaign on the promise that he would erect a wall between America and Mexico.  And topping that, he promised that Mexico would pay for the wall.

Only now he's saying the American taxpayer would pay for it now, but that Mexico will pay for it.... eventually.

Yeah.  Right.

This story has been going around - apparently there was an episode of 'Trackdown' in which a con man was offering to build a wall around a town to protect it from a meteor strike.  And his name?  Trump.

Okay, his first name was Walter and he didn't try to cover up his lack of hair with vermin fur, but it's a neat coincidence.

That great debunker of urban myths, Snopes.com, has the story.  Click here.
http://www.snopes.com/trackdown-trump-character-wall/


I would say that Walter Trump is the ancestor of Donald Trump's televersion (who is a member of the TVXOHOF) except his family only came to America a few generations ago.  

I think Walter Trump's spirit can rest easy.....

BCnU!