Monday, June 26, 2006


One aspect which separates Toobworld from other visions of a TV Universe is that Toobworld accepts appearances by real-life celebrities as themselves in fictional situations to be valid crossovers if they appear in other shows as themselves as well. Even though they are "reality" in our world (and let's face it, even then they are sometimes beyond belief!), they are as much fictional characters as those they appear with in TV shows.

And we call the collection of these characters the League of Themselves.

This week's big crossover was due to such a character. Reverend Al Sharpton appeared as himself in an episode of 'Rescue Me' ("Sparks"). And as much of a blowhard as I think he is, I have to give him credit that he agreed to do it since he didn't come off in the best of lights for his showcase.

Sharpton appeared on the news to castigate the firehouse crew for ignoring the community. They had been out on a call to help an elderly black man in the neighborhood who had gone into cardiac arrest when they saw a school bus which had overturned. The firemen stopped to help, making sure that somebody else could answer the cardiac call, and were able to rescue the children (some of them injured) before the bus blew up.

Okay, sure, the old man ended up dying, but all the kids were saved. Reverend Al's problem was that they were all white kids. (The firemen would tell you that there was at least one Egyptian kid on board.)

C'mon, Al. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, y'know? You'll never get on any 'Star Trek' revival if you take that attitude.

Reverend Al Sharpton has appeared on a good handful of TV series as himself over the last ten years or so, and thus his appearance on 'Rescue Me' puts this Denis Leary production into that official version of "The Great Link".

'New York Undercover' - "Smoking Section"
'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit' - "Sophomore Jinx"
'Girlfriends' - "The Rabbit Died"
'Tanner On Tanner'
'Boston Legal' - "Head Cases" & "Loose Lips"
'My Wife And Kids' - "Fantasy Camp" (Parts One & Two)

Also of note, he hosted 'Saturday Night Live' once, so he's made his mark in Earth Not Ready For Prime-Time as well as in Earth Prime-Time as himself and also as Johnnie Cochran among other roles he played that night.

And not that he needed it for his stats to gain inclusion into the TV Crossover Hall of Fame someday, but he also hosted his own talk show called "Sharp Talk".

It's a shame the Westphallians don't recognize the League of Themselves when constructing their vision of the TV Universe. Since 'Boston Legal', 'New York Undercover', and 'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit' are already part of Tommy Westphall's fantasy land, Reverend Al brings in the other four shows.

Ah well, to each his own.....



Anonymous said...

Al Sharpton is also part of the world of skits--years ago on In Living Color, David Alan Grier played Sharpton in a skit based on Abbott & Costello, as he and Lou(is) Farrakhan decided they didn't care who was on first, but they were sure a conspiracy was on every base.

Here I thought your crossover of the week would be the USA commercials with the leads from Monk, Psych, and the Dead Zone. Teach me to try and predict.


Toby O'B said...

LOL - commercials and promos are more flexible. They can be summoned at any time for their turn in the spotlight.

I plan to salute that one next week as it will be more appropriate leading up to the debut of Psych. And this episode of 'Rescue Me' did need to get the spot this week.

(My brother has told me of a commercial playing up in Connecticut which will be a doozy... but I have to see it myself first. More later.)

But that is a great promo for all three USA shows, isn't it? Very believable in the realm of Toobworld where just about anything goes.

Anonymous said...

Commercials do allow some major crossovers. They had one with Dead Zone and Monk a couple of years ago, where Adrian's fear of touching others was the source of the humor.

My all-time favorite for crossover options: NBC had a promo before the first episode aired for Fresh Prince of Bel Air with Will Smith and Jed Clampett (Buddy Ebsen appearing in character) in a posh restaurant, discussing the upscale areas each would live in. They never broke character, so I've always used that as a link, which puts several shows together.