Saturday, October 7, 2017


Nice girls, not one with a defect
Cellophane shrink-wrapped, so correct
Red dogs under illegal legs
She looks so good that he gets down and begs

She is watching 'The Detectives'
"Ooh, he's so cute"
She is watching 'The Detectives'
When they shoot, shoot, shoot, shoot
But he can't be wounded 'cause he's got no heart

Long shot at that jumping sign
Invisible shivers running down my spine
Cut to baby taking off her clothes
Close-up of the sign that says "We never close"
He snatches at you and you match his cigarette
She pulls the eyes out with a face like a magnet
I don't know how much more of this I can take
She's filing her nails while they're dragging the lake

She is watching 'The Detectives'
"Ooh, he's so cute"
She is watching 'The Detectives'
Oh when they shoot, shoot, shoot, shoot
They beat him up until the teardrops start
But he can't be wounded 'cause he's got no heart

You think you're alone until you realize you're in it
Now fear is here to stay, love is here for a visit
They call it instant justice when it's past the legal limit
Someone's scratching at the window, I wonder who is it?
The detectives come to check if you belong to the parents
Who are ready to hear the worst about their daughter's disappearance
Though it nearly took a miracle to get you to stay
It only took my little fingers to blow you away

Just like watching 'The Detectives'
Don't get cute
Just like watching 'The Detectives'
I get so angry when the teardrops start
But he can't be wounded 'cause he's got no heart

Watching 'The Detectives'
It's just like watching 
'The Detectives'
'The Detectives'
'The Detectives'

'The Detectives'
'The Detectives'
They're watching 
'The Detectives'
'The Detectives'

Written by Elvis Costello • Copyright © Universal Music Publishing Group

From Wikipedia;
"The Detectives" (also known as "The Detectives Starring Robert Taylor" and "Robert Taylor's Detectives") is an American crime drama series which ran on ABC during its first two seasons (sponsored by Procter & Gamble), and on NBC during its third and final season. The series, starring motion picture star Robert Taylor, was produced by Four Star Television in association with Levy-Gardner-Laven Productions.


Friday, October 6, 2017


I'm not going to spend the whole month of October broadcasting Halloween-themed posts.  I'm not fixated on the holiday like 'Roseanne' and the Conner Famlly or a certain 'Twilight Zone'-loving lovely in the Great White North.  But as the month progresses, if I see something of interest from TV and related to Samhain, then I'll share it here.

And the lead-off here is Pennywise.

As September drew to a close, my brother Bill and I went to see the movie adaptation of Stephen King's "It".  I liked it; it certainly had me jumping in my seat.  And I enjoyed what I perceived as nods to past works by Mr. King - a car was seen that looked like "Christine" and there was a character's comparison to Molly Ringwald who starred in the mini-series of "The Stand".

Bill knew nothing about the story except of course that there was an evil clown named Pennywise.  I had never read the book, but I did see the 1990 mini-series and enjoyed that as well.  (When I got home, I read the detailed Wikipedia summary of the book's events and I think both the movie and the mini-series improved on the story.)  

Don't get me wrong - I have read other books by King - "The Dead Zone", "Salem's Lot", "The Stand" (that one twice!) plus several of his short stories.  He certainly knows how to grab you and not let you go!

I think the strength of this movie lay in the casting of unknowns (save for Finn Wolfhard, although his glasses disguise him pretty well.  But he is back in familiar territory which helps viewers make the connection.  That's him in the picture above on the far right.)  For the mini-series, the second part of the story had the stronger cast, although there were two stand-outs among the kids - the late Jonathan Brandis and Seth Green.

We'll have to wait probably two years for "Chapter Two" so I'm sure they'll have an impressive line-up for actors to play the kids grown up.  The key will be to make sure the adults physically match the kids, because they certainly burned their portrayals into my mind!


Thursday, October 5, 2017


One hundred years ago today, in Mineral Point, Wisconsin, Allen Ludden was born.

From Wikipedia:
Allen Ludden (October 5, 1917 – June 9, 1981) was an American television personality, emcee and game show host, perhaps best known for having hosted various incarnations of the game show Password between 1961 and 1980.

Ludden was one of the early pioneers of television in the field of game shows, beginning with the archaic 'General Electric College Bowl' which pitted students from one school against a team from another school.  But from there he became synonymous with 'Password', so much so that an episode of 'The Odd Couple' was centered around it. In that episode, Ludden appeared with three other members of the Television Crossover Hall of Fame - Felix Unger, Oscar Madison, and Ludden's wife, Betty White.

'The Odd Couple' 
- "Password" (1972)
Oscar and Felix appear together on Password and Felix is sure that they can win.

'O'Hara, U.S. Treasury' 

- "Operation: Lady Luck" (1972)
A compulsive gambler turned bumbling crook, planning to build a stake by selling $1,000,000 in counterfeit bills. jeopardizes Jim O’Hara’s attempt to catch a ring of counterfeiters.  Ludden and Betty White were recruited to assist Secret Service agent Jim O'Hara.

- "Horse of a Slightly Different Color" (1974)
... The Interviewer
Thoroughbred-owner Katherine Wells finishes an interview at the track, then in confidence tells her horse trainer that she is quitting racing, having sold her prized thoroughbred for $5,000,000, and that, after its morning workout, the transfer would be official. Before his new owner and a camera crew, Oxford Don starts his quarter run, yet a different horse finishes - with no time to switch to a "Horse of a Slightly Different Color."


Although not identified as playing himself, nothing prevents his fictional televersion from taking on this kind of softball entertainment news job.
From Wikipedia:
Ludden is mentioned in passing in an episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show entitled "Don't Break the Chain" (Season Two, Episode 10), in reference to his allegedly sending the character Lou Grant a chain letter.

Although he didn't appear in the series, the mention of Ludden is proof that he existed in Toobworld..  Lou also mentioned that he hosted 'The GE College Bowl', so like 'Password', that early game show has a fictional televersion.

And because he was best known as a game show host, and especially because a fictional televersion of 'Password' has become part of the TV Universe, the following shows support his tally of shows in his resume.  (But we did need those first three to make it official.)

  • 'Password Plus' 
  • 'Password All-Stars'
  • 'Match Game 73' 
  • 'Liar's Club'
  • 'Stumpers!'
  • 'Tattletales' 
  • 'The General Electric College Bowl' 
  • 'Card Sharks' 
  • 'What's My Line?' 
  • 'Allen Ludden's Gallery'

From Wikipedia:
A walkway at the Los Angeles Zoo was named in his memory (Betty White is a board member at the Zoo) and an artificial lake in Mineral Point was named Ludden Lake in his honor. A Labrador Retriever was named "Ludden" and donated to Guide Dogs for the Blind in San Rafael, California, by Betty White in memory of her late husband.


Wednesday, October 4, 2017


Monty Hall, the original host and co-creator of “Let's Make a Deal,” the long-running game show that debuted in 1963, making kooky audience costumes and carnival-style bartering an institution on daytime television, has died, according to Associated Press. He was 96.

Hall, who was also a dedicated philanthropist, died of heart failure Saturday morning at his home in Los Angeles, according to his daughter Sharon Hall.

“We knew this was going to happen — he was 96 — but you’re never prepared,” she said.

One of the most popular TV game shows of the 1960s and early 1970s, “Let's Make a Deal” featured Hall as a fast-talking auctioneer-trader who randomly pulled people from the audience to trade for prizes that could be valuable – or relatively worthless “zonks,” gag gifts such as a barnyard animal or a giant jar of peanut butter.
[By Valerie J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times]

One day I'm going to start inducting TV shows into the Television Crossover Hall of Fame.  There were at least a year's worth of programs which also existed in Toobworld and were so ingrained into the zeitgeist that several shows made reference to them.  And 'Let's Make A Deal' is one of them.  It also gave Toobworld Central the term "Zonk" which we use to describe the discrepancies like the recasting of Darrin Stephens.

But just about every time 'Let's Make A Deal' appeared in a fictional sense in other shows, there was Monty Hall along for the ride, willing to pay for that paper clip in your purse.

So today we're celebrating his most famous contribution to the television universe by inducting Monty Hall into the TV Crossover Hall of Fame as a member of the League of Themselves.

The most famous appearance of the fictional 'Let's Make A Deal' televersion was probably its first, in an episode of 'The Odd Couple'.

'The Odd Couple' 
"Let's Make a Deal" (1973)
Felix and Oscar appear on Let's Make a Deal to get a new bed for Felix after Oscar set his on fire.


Mr. Hall came back again for another episode:

'The Odd Couple' 
- A Different Drummer (1974)
Felix wants to get his band on Monty Hall's new show.

'Jennifer Slept Here'
- Calendar Girl (1983) 
While going through some items left in the house, George finds an nude picture of Jennifer, taken back before she was an star.

Delighted with his find, George intends to put it up for auction, and invites Monty Hall to be the auctioneer.  Jennifer is shaken by the discovery, and pleads with Joey to stop the auction, and keep the picture away from the public eye.

'The Wonder Years'
- The Test (1992)
While Kevin struggles to study for his upcoming SAT tests, Jack ponders quiting NORCOM to go into the furniture-making business.  Kevin watches 'Let's Make A Deal' on TV and it shows up in his dream.

'Love & War'
- But Not for Me (1993)
After Kip is nominated for a daytime television award, he invites the gang to the ceremonies and asks Dana to be his date. Monty Hall makes a guest appearance as himself.

O'BSERVATION: The sweet thing about seeing this episode (available on Amazon) is that he shared his scene with his real-life daughter, Joanna Gleason, who was a regular on that series.

'Sabrina, the Teenage Witch'
- The Long and Winding Short Cut (1999)
Hoping to get a quick answer to a family riddle, Sabrina took a short cut by conjuring Monty Hall to host a supernatural game show.

'The Nanny'
- The Taxman Cometh (1996)
Sylvia has an old videotape with her and Morty on 'Let's Make a Deal'.

I wonder how many generations ago this dupe was made?

'That '70s Show' 
- The Promise Ring (2001)
Donna has a dream in which the door she chooses on the show holds her boyfriend Eric and his promise ring.  Door #1 offered her the chance to be a writer and Door #2 could have been her path to the Presidency.  But no, she chose Eric.  On a donkey.

- Parenthood (2001) 

Robbie's date with Tina falls through when Pete's dad Peter cancels last minute to chaperon his scouts event. Robbie is happy to be invited by the kid to his birthday party, but Peter demands he steps out of the divorced family's only annual event. Syd's clinic is selected as contender for a grant from the prestigious Medfund. The Barkery hires pastry chef Elliot Anderman, who finds cooking for animals beneath him, let alone cleaning, but lost his Chicago standing after malicious food poisoning. He proves sympathetic to Joanie's miscarriage-trauma and reorganizes efficiently and ergonomically.

I don't know how Mr. Hall ties into that.

In March of 2010, Monty Hall returned to the show he helped create to celebrate its 50th anniversary with the current host Wayne Brady.

And he exists in the Tooniverse as well:

'Wait Till Your Father Gets Home'
"Mama Loves Monty"
Irma Boyle appeared on 'Let's Make a Deal' and ended up almost getting married to Monty Hall in Vegas.

Jack Burns, Tom Bosley, Joan Gerber & Monty Hall

Good night and may God bless, Monty Hall........