Saturday, April 7, 2007


"Toby is terrible.
Toby is the worst human being I have ever known
Michael Scott
'The Office'

And in response, here's a classic:

"I accept all superlatives!"
Abigail Mitchell



According to Ken Levine (link to the left), there was a headline in the Sydney Morning Herald the other day that read:

Air Pacific says it has apologised to a young Japanese woman after a Fijian soldier urinated on her.

Just change Air Pacific to Oceanic Airways, and this is the type of story they should adapt for the next flashback involving Sun on 'Lost'!



Toobworld and the Tooniverse are two distinct TV dimensions, although there are times when characters from either side can cross through the vortex to visit the other side.

Sometimes, however, boundaries should be maintained.

Just ask Kimosabe over at "It's Over, TV"....



It's Easter weekend, and Rob Buckley has gone all Toobworldish over in "The Medium Is Not Enough" with ruminations on "Stargate" and chocolate. (When it's Easter, my thoughts turn to jelly beans, but I don't really have anything toobworthy for that today....)

It's actually in connection to the Cineverse counterpart to the long-running TV staple, but his question would apply as well to the televersion, I'm thinking.

I'm also thinking a leap through the Stargate is the perfect opportunity to revive the old "Hey, you got chocolate in my peanut butter" blipvert.....

Click on that link above for a quick smile.



One of my fellow "Iddiots" from the Idiot's Delight Digest asked this in the IDD:

Speaking of tv ads, I think I saw Garrett Wang, who played Harry Kim on ST:Voyager, on a tv ad today for a prescription heart medication called Coreg. He played a doctor explaining why this might be the right medication for you if you've recently survived a heart attack.

He looks like a slightly older Kim, with shorter hair and those ubiquitous rectangular glasses that everyone wears nowadays. He was wearing a white lab coat, not a Federation-issued medical uniform

I would put the probability that it was Ensign Kim at about 97%. This is not a clever ad but it does have a Star Trek connection, which may not be as hip today as, say, a Battlestar Galactica tie-in but it's still noteworthy.

And speaking of Battlestar, I should put in my vote here for Number Six (aka Tricia Helfer) as the hottest woman on that killer series, human or Cylon (though Grace Park as Sharon is a close second). And she is the best thing to happen to sci-fi numerologists since Seven of Nine (aka Jeri Ryan) was rescued from the Borg.

I know it's a long shot to ask, but is there anybody out there with info on this commercial, and especially as to whether that's Garrett Wang or not in the role?

More than just his idle speculation is at stake here....


Friday, April 6, 2007


I've seen the season premiere for 'Doctor Who', "Smith And Jones". And I have to say that it was one of the fastest forty minutes or so of Television I've seen in a long time. For two characters who were just meeting for the first time (although the actors have worked together before on the series), the Doctor and Martha seemed to mesh straight from the start. This looks to be a very comfortable companionship over the next year or so (hopefully!)....

So here are a few Toobworld points about the episode.....

Martha Jones - You should know that I'm not too keen on boring last names (And you can't get more mundane than Jones!), but considering that Martha will soon be thrust into exciting, alien worlds and experiences, perhaps it's good to have her anchored to her Terran background with such an unassuming name.

I'm glad they decided to address the fact that she appeared in "Army of Ghosts", the first half of last season's two-part finale. True, it was quite some time ago; but when these shows go into the endless syndication they deserve, there will be only two episodes separating Martha from Adeola.

So they fell back on a tried and true Toobworld staple - the identical cousin. And I think it works. It gives the show a link to its own past, and besides, Adeola wasn't onscreen for very long.

I just wonder if the Doctor will ever confess to Martha that in a way, he contributed to Adeola's death....

Well, that's all I have to say about Adeola, if only for the fact that I'm finding it very hard to refrain from being naughty with her name.

Ben Franklin - We found out that the Doctor was present at the famous kite-flying/electricity experiment conducted by Ben Franklin. And that he got serious rope burns from it.

I think that this was an offscreen adventure for the First Incarnation of the Doctor, as he was the one most interested in exploring Earth to learn more about its history.

As to who should be seen in the mind's eye as Ben Franklin, the "jury" is still out as to who best represents the image of this Founding Father in Toobworld. Tom Bosley? Fredd Wayne? Richard Easton?

Emmeline Pankhurst - the other historical reference during this adventure. Apparently, the founder of the women's suffragette movement in England stole the Doctor's sonic spanner, for which he branded her a "cheeky woman".

The following mini-bio for Mrs. Pankhurst comes from TVHeaven, which does give it a Toobworld spin by focusing on her as seen in the mini-series 'Shoulder To Shoulder'.

"Emmeline Pankhurst, who forms the Women's Social and Political Union, the driving power behind the women's movement.

Portrayed by Sian Phillips she is shown as a sensitive, caring, charismatic woman who was also responsible for an increasing militancy in the campaign, prompted by an occasion in 1905 when her daughter:

Christabel (Patricia Quinn), was ejected from a Liberal meeting in Manchester and then arrested and imprisoned for assaulting the police because she had dared ask the meeting about votes for women."

'Shoulder To Shoulder' came out in 1974 in the UK and in 1975 here in America. It was a project championed by one of its stars, Georgia Brown, who made certain that the mostly male writers of the mini-series threw out their preconceived notions of who these women were. There were six episodes and seems to have been highly praised for the role it played in remembrance of their work and in keeping the flame alive. (I don't think it's available on DVD however.)

Emmeline Pankhurst was portrayed in this mini-series by that great actress Sian Phillips (so memorable as the venomous Livia of 'I, Claudius'). Wendy Williams played Mrs. Pankhurst as well, in a mini-series look at the life of David Lloyd-George, but since 'Shoulder To Shoulder' focused on the woman, I think it only right that Ms. Phillips' performance be given preference in Earthe Prime-Time.

Not that it should be of concern for Toobworld, but there are two connections to 'Doctor Who' through the mention of Mrs. Pankhurst. One, she was a Mancunian, which producer Russell T. Davies must have learned while working for the BBC there in Manchester.

And that mini-series, 'Shoulder To Shoulder' was produced by Verity Lambert, who was an integral force behind the earlier era of 'Doctor Who'......

Sycorax ship over London - this was a reference back to "The Christmas Invasion" which featured Harriet Jones as the Prime Minister. However, that doesn't have to mean that this new season must be still relegated to that alternate TV dimension where all the previous adventures of Doctors Nine and Ten have taken place; we could be back in the main Toobworld universe, just so long as there is no mention again of Harriet Jones.

(The Sycorax invasion more than likely happened in almost all variations of the TV dimensions.)

Plasmavores - Ah, space vampires! I'll have to check TV Acres, but I'm sure that this must be a staple among extraterrestrial life found in sci-fi shows. When they first started talking about Ms. Finnegan and her salt deficiency, my heart raced that we might be seeing one of the last of the salt vampires in disguise. (This episode was set far enough back in Time so that there may still have been more than one of that dying race as seen in the 'Star Trek' episode "The Man-Trap".)

But no, Ms. Finnegan was a blood-sucker. And so neat about it too - she brought her own straw. I'm not sure what they may have looked like originally, but plasmavores had the capacity to assume the basic genetic structure of whomever was their host after they drained the victim of their blood. (Apparently they can't tell as they sup er, sip, what type of blood they're consuming and absorbing. Otherwise, Ms. Finnegan might have noticed the taste difference between human and Gallifreyan.)

That "taste" of the Doctor's blood might trigger a renewed discussion of a plot point from the 1996 TV movie - that the Doctor's mother was from Earth and he was only half-Gallifreyan....
Florence Finnegan - I like it when nasty old ladies get what's coming to them. But it's a shame they couldn't have let her escape to bedevil the Doctor another day.

Mr. Stoker - I was surprised Roy Marsden didn't get to be in the episode longer, and found it hard to think of him as just a red-shirt. As for his name, I've already contacted David Bianculli of the New York Daily News to tell him of the in-joke for use in one of his future columns about such "Extras".

The hospital's crater - Whatever the technology was that the Judoon used to transport the hospital complex to the Moon, they must have "borrowed" it from the Luminosians as seen in "Feasibility Study" from the first series of 'The Outer Limits'.

At least they brought the hospital back and reattached it in its original placement....

The Judoon - The basic humanoid form can be found throughout the universe thanks to "seeding" by a sect of the First Ones known as "The Preservers". I'm thinking that there might have been a separatist faction among the Preservers who took native life from whichever planets they visited to seed and then blended its DNA with that of the humanoid strain to create a new race of sentient beings.

As such, they apparently took rhinoceros DNA from Earth and created a humanoid form that retained that basic rhino visage. However, it was mounted on a humanoid skeletal system that doesn't look at first glance to be strong enough to support such a massive skull. In order to do so, the musculature must be incredibly dense and the bones would have to be the equivalent to adamantium steel.

I don't think these same Preservers can be held responsible for the creation of Gomez Addams' business partner. (He can be seen in the background of 'The Addams Family' house in a painting. He's a giraffe in a business suit.) No, I think he can claim the tele-version of Dr. Moreau as his "father".

(This will bleep off a lot of creationists, but humans are not native to Earth due to God's design, but rhinos are. Ionesco was onto something!)

By the way - Judoon: great name!

Martha's Family - I had no problems in meeting them; I'm glad they exist. But I don't want the show running back every other episode to get them mixed up in some of the adventures, as was the case with Rose Tyler. From what I'm hearing, somebody has stepped in to keep RTD from doing that again. Good.

The Blue Suit - I thought I would like it once I saw David Tennant in it, but it just didn't feel "right". I was glad he was back in the brown one by the end of the episode. I did like the red sneaks though!

And Finally.....

The Doctor's Brother - Martha asked the Doctor if he had a brother, and he responded "Not any more....." And he also made reference to "we" when talking about being in the nursery.

This has led to much speculation that the Doctor had a falling out with his brother and that could splain the enmity between him and the Master - they were brothers! Classic Cain and Abel!

But there are others who say that RTD is not fond of the idea for bringing back the Master; that maybe the brother (and the title for the last episode this season - "Last Of The Time Lords") are references to the Meddling Monk.

I'm not sure I like the idea of the Master being the Doctor's brother. I much prefer that the Master was first seen in "War Games" with Patrick Troughton as the Second Doctor. And it's from that point on the Doctor has gained the Master's enmity.

There's also a pretty strong rumor that John Simm will be appearing in the series by the end of this new season. Could he be the Master? Could he be the Meddling Monk? Or is he the mysterious Mr. Saxon, who could still turn out to be either one of those two options?

Well, that's my take on this first episode of the new season. (PLEASE don't get me to come down on either side of the "what number season?" argument!)



Even though Ralph Bellamy passed away in 1991, he "starred" in last week's episode of 'Boston Legal', "Son Of The Defender". courtesy of those flashbacks from the 1957 'Studio One' production of "The Defender".

So other shows which might want to employ this technique wouldn't even need a surviving member of an original cast to incorporate such footage.

Here's an example that I came up with:

There have been suggestions of Gary Sinise assaying the role of Bones McCoy in the proposed 'Star Trek' film about the early years of Kirk and Spock. And there is something to suggest a younger DeForest Kelley in his appearance.

So why not track down early TV films or kinescopes of DeForest Kelley in a TV show in which he interacted with a young boy? Then it could be suggested that this was a flashback of Mac Taylor and his Dad for an episode of 'CSI: NY'!

Another idea I had:

Recycle some scenes of the darker side of suburbia from 'Alfred Hitchcock Presents' to illustrate a 'Cold Case'-styled episode of 'Close To Home'. There were plenty of gruesome deaths on that program - remember the head in the ice bucket? Maybe one of those murders could be televised again as the prosecution team reacquaints itself with the facts of an earlier case.

Or a whole slew of them could be used while the members of the BAU on 'Criminal Minds' try to figure out the reasoning of a serial killer recreating the details from a famous case.

There's so much material out there, it's a shame more of it can't be recycled in this way to gain exposure for the originals. If the viewers liked what they saw, they could track down the original productions from DVD collections, or at media museums, or online at sites similar to LikeTV.

Just sayin', is all....


Thursday, April 5, 2007


Now that the barracks community of the Others (which I've also seen described as "downtown") has been deserted, I think Jack and Sayid should lead their fellow survivors back there to live.

It might even make for another biblical parallel for Jack to lead them there like Moses, hoping that so many hikers wouldn't rouse the smoke monster before they could reach the fence.

It would certainly give them a better position from which to defend themselves should there be that hinted confrontation with the Others. And it would get them farther away from the beach when the 2004 tsunami strikes the day after Christmas. (Right now it's about December 12th on the show.)

Speaking of the show's "current" date, the Powers That Be for 'Lost' probably never even had this in mind, but this week's B story reminded me of a classic tale.

It's probably Dec. 12th, 2004 or thereabouts on the island, based on what Nikki said about Thanksgiving last week.

So they're all at about that point in time when TV shows have their Christmas episodes.

I see Sawyer as the island's version of Scrooge, and Hurley as the Ghost of Christmas Present in getting Sawyer to change his ways.

Like I said, it was probably not intentional, but it's fun to think of it in those terms.


Did you catch the number sequence to activate the sonic fence? Juliet typed in "1623".....


Since the TV Crossover Hall of Fame officially began back in 1999, I've tried to use the April induction to celebrate all aspects of "The Fool". There have been those who have been foolish or just plain dumb; others who have celebrated the traditions of clowning; and others who have embodied the Shakespearean sense of the Fool with insight, wit and guile; perhaps even assuming the role of Trickster.

Here are the Hall of Famers who have been inducted over the years during April:

John Munch
Lucille Ball
Maxwell Smart & Agent 99
Luther Van Dam
Montgomery Scott
Ted Baxter
Mike Logan

This year, we're kicking off a mini-theme, celebrating one of the longest-running dramatic series on Television. And April just seemed to be the perfect month in which to launch this theme with the main character who serves as the inspiration. (Especially since his show just returned for a new season this past Saturday!)

Throughout his career in Toobworld, he has been all those aspects of the Fool - witty, clownish, even a bit of a dolt at times. At one point in his career, he was often referred to as a baggy-pants clown; even a galactic hobo. And later that incarnation met up with himself from the future who was quite literally, a "wearer of the motley". (He would be dressed as though he had escaped from an explosion in a buffoon's wardrobe.)

There hasn't been much consistency to this aspect of his personality; indeed, there hasn't been any consistency at all to how he's been portrayed. And little wonder, since we're talking about a gentleman who's been portrayed in Toobworld by at least ten different actors (with additional casting side trips in the Tooniverse, the Cineverse, Skitlandia, and in the universes based on audio plays, comic books, comic strips, theatrical productions, and even on the Internet).


Exactly. The Doctor.

The Gallifreyan Time Lord of 'Doctor Who' had been on the air since the early 1960s until the late 80s. He came back for a charity special, and then a FOX TV movie, and then brilliantly returned for what looks to be another long run in 2005.

And throughout it all, the Doctor had the most ingenious way to splain away the "Darrin Discrepancies" caused by recasting the actor in the title role: the Gallifreyans can regenerate their bodies upon the point of death so that they can begin anew with a new physical look, with new personality quirks, and with a new taste in fashion. (This is what kept actors interested in taking up the role; they never had to be a slave to what the previous actor brought to the Doctor.)

Whether or not you consider the show one seamless ride from its original run through the TV movie and now into the new series, there have still been enough side trips into other tele-venues for the Doctor to qualify for membership in the TV Crossover Hall of Fame.

There are the two "Children In Need" charity specials - 'Dimensions In Time' which featured all of the Doctors and many of his Companions up to the Seventh Incarnation (and which crossed over with 'EastEnders' to boot!), and the 2005 vignette which served as a bridge between the first two seasons of the revival.

The Doctor materialized in the year 123 AD, just long enough to pop out of his TARDIS for a quick "look-round" (Okay, okay, he had to take a leak!) before heading off to his next adventure. ('Chelmsford 123') The TARDIS was seen stored in the docking bay of the space ship Starbug which would indicate that for a time, the Doctor was on board as well. ('Red Dwarf')

Although it's not usually a dimension we should be paying attention to here at "Inner Toob", the movie universe had its own version of the Doctor in two different movies. Peter Cushing played the role in both and was actually named Doctor Who.

Over in The Tooniverse, we've seen the Fourth Incarnation of the Doctor at least twice on 'The Simpsons' and a serialized cartoon has just begun broadcasting on the BBC with an adventure for the Tenth Incarnation, "The Infinite Quest".

Then there are his many other incarnations in Skitlandia, that dimension made up from comedy sketches on variety shows, late night talk shows, etc. With a sketch on the Comic Relief telethon called "The Curse of Fatal Death", we saw the Doctor run through his last remaining regenerations with the actors Rowan Atkinson, Richard E. Grant, Jim Broadbent, Hugh Grant, and finally Joanna Lumley in the role!

Richard E. Grant also played the role of the "Ninth Doctor" in an animated adventure "Scream Of The Shalka" for the Internet. The "jury" is still out as to whether or not Web content should be absorbed into the canon for any TV show, whether it be 'Doctor Who' or 'The Office' or 'Rescue Me', etc. But in this case, I think "Scream Of The Shalka" should be kept separate, as this Doctor was specifically referred to as the Ninth, and that role has been usurped in Toobworld by Christopher Eccleston's portrayal.

Here is a list of actors who have played the Doctor in Toobworld:

William Hartnell & Richard Hurndall as the First Incarnation
(Hurndall played the role in a guest re-appearance, "The Five Doctors", as Hartnell had already passed away. I like to think that Hurndall's portrayal was from slightly earlier in the First Doctor's life. But details from "The Five Doctors" may trip me up on that.)

Patrick Troughton as the Second Doctor
(I know I shouldn't play favorites, but he is the one I like the best.)

Jon Pertwee as the Third Doctor

Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor

Peter Davison as the Fifth Doctor

Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor

Sylvester McCoy as the Seventh Doctor

Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor in the 1996 TV movie

Christopher Eccleston as the Ninth Doctor

David Tennant as the Tenth, and current, Incarnation

(Also, there should be some consideration for Michael Jayston, who portrayed the Valeyard in "Trial Of A Time Lord". The Valeyard was a future incarnation of the Doctor.)

Just the ten incarnations of the Toobworld Doctor alone will make for a very crowded exhibition. We may have to open a separate wing!

Welcome to the Hall, Sir... and Sirs!


Wednesday, April 4, 2007


Thanks to London Tipton's obsession with Orlando Bloom, which forced the actor to take out a restraining order against the young heiress, Toobworld can presume there's a connection between 'The Suite Life Of Zack And Cody' and 'Extras'.

Bloom and Sophia Myles were filming a movie about opposing lawyers in love during the second season of Ricky Gervais' comedy about "background artistes".



John Stamos is currently appearing as himself in a commercial for Propel water product, not as a spokesman but in the midst of a paparazzi swarm.

As it was a fictional scenario, then the blipvert can be linked to the following shows in which he played himself:

"The Larry Sanders Show"
- The Prank (1997)
- 0.409 (1995)

- Surf's Up (1995) (as a member of the Beach Boys)
"Step by Step"
- Great Expectations (1994)


Turns out that I really should watch commercials right to the very end. (I also should do something about this ADD....) Apparently, the woman is fantasizing everything she sees during her power-walk, including Stamos (and Derek Jeter).

Still, she knew who he was, and in the Toobworld sense that gives him validity as his own tele-version. So while not a full-out link to the other shows, it can add flavor to Stamos' standings.....

something like that.....


It's not just old footage from fictionalized TV shows that can be revived for present day use.

CBS will be showing the colorized 1960 kinescope of the Masters Tournament which was won by Arnold Palmer, and which featured Jack Nicklaus as an "amateur"!

There are several other points of interest for the sports-minded televisiologist in the program, which will be broadcast one hour before Sunday's presentation of the 2007 Masters.



Well, even though I stated yesterday that Steve McQueen would be appearing in last night's episode of 'Boston Legal', thanks to archival footage from 'Studio One' - "The Defender", the legal drama limited itself to just three scenes between William Shatner and Ralph Bellamy to hammer home the dynamic between Denny Crane and his father.

There were also no clips of the courtroom proceedings from that live 1957 production, so we never got to see Martin Balsam as the prosecutor, Ian Wolfe as the Judge, and Ed Asner in an uncredited turn as Juror #2.

Surely David E. Kelley's production company had to pay for the rights to use the material. (You know there's a Shirley Schmidt joke in that sentence!) If they paid for the whole show, they should have probably taken advantage of that and used even more clips. Even to the point where Alan's sub-plot could have been sacrificed and used in a later episode.

(But it was smart to keep him out of the "proceedings" in the conference room. Aaron Sears would have eventually had to shoot him just to shut him up!)

Still, I get the feeling that in their original concept for the use of the film clips, Phoef Sutton and DEK may have been planning to use more of the footage. Otherwise, why have their version of that case mirror almost exactly the events that were seen in "The Defender"? They changed the characters names, save for the defendant Joe Gordon. They even changed his sexual orientation!

(Not that there's anything wrong with that, but O'Bviously he was never going to be revealed as homosexual in a TV show back in the 1950s! However, it might splain why his character was so full of anger. Despite trying to conform to society's demands by having a girl-friend, maybe Joe couldn't fight what he really was.

Although I bet McQueen would have fought against playing that aspect back then, if ever. McQueen as a queen? You know that horrible pun would have come up.....)

Otherwise, everything pretty much remained the same as it had been in the original episode. Joe was dubbed "The Butcher Boy Killer" in that first case won by Denny Crane, and he was a butcher's assistant supposedly making a delivery to the victim at the time of the murder. The maid walked in on the killer and claimed that it was Joe who knocked her down. And the husband saw Joe fleeing the apartment building.

They even used the same legal trick employed by Shatner as Kenneth Preston in "The Defender" for Shatner as Denny Crane to get a dismissal of the charges for his client.

Despite the fact that he was only about five years old when that 'Studio One' episode aired in 1957, James Keane was hired to play Joe Gordon in 2007. (The character was supposed to be 19 at that time fifty years ago.) Apparently he was hired because there is a passable resemblance to Steve McQueen, which was then aided by old-age makeup.

But why go to the bother if you weren't ever going to show McQueen in the archival footage? (In my opinion, if they ever want to make a biopic about Steve McQueen, the go-to actor is Anthony Michael Hall. Really.)

Like I said, it's a shame they never expanded the storyline to fill the entire hour. Even if they just wanted to focus on the father-son dynamic, there were still some great scenes in the courtroom itself that they could have used. I'm wondering if they had to pay the rights for all of the "atmosphere people" who could be seen in the background and so finally decided it wasn't cost-effective to use the clips?

I'll have to watch my tape of the episode again, but I don't think the late Ralph Bellamy was given screen credit for his "participation" during the episode. I may be wrong on that; I hope so. Otherwise he was literally and figuratively "used". I'm not against re-using old film clips in commercials and TV shows, but credit must be paid.

The best moment had to be within the first flashback, when Shatner's visage as Denny Crane morphed into that of Kenneth Preston to show how Denny must have looked fifty years ago.

If you ever get the chance to see that full production of "The Defender", take advantage of it. Reginald Rose (who also wrote "Twelve Angry Men") has been hailed as one of the top five greatest writers from TV's Golden Age, and David E. Kelley has been compared to him in the past.

It also gives you an opportunity to see what his later series about the characters of Lawrence and Kenneth Preston would be like. (However, EG Marshall and Robert Reed would play the father and son legal team in that ground-breaking show "The Defenders".)



In order to keep the fans off-track when it came to the outcome of Tracy Barlow's trial for the murder of her boyfriend Charlie Stubbs, two different verdicts were recorded - one in which Tracy was found guilty, and the other in which she was declared not guilty.

Originally I typed "innocent", but the audience had already seen her confess her guilt to her mother. They also knew that her claim that Charlie had abused her was bogus.

Tracy planned on killing Charlie all along, after she found out that he had been having an affair.

A 'Coronation Street' spokesman said that "There was no way Tracy could ever get away with this crime." He went on to describe the prime-time soap opera as "a moral show where cheats and murderers rarely prosper."

If DCS Charlie Barlow ('Z Cars', 'Softly, Softly', 'Barlow At Large') was still alive, this would have killed him. (Not sure what their familial connection may have been, but there will definitely be more about Barlow here at "Inner Toob" in two months.....)

So the guilty verdict ending is now set in stone for Earth Prime-Time, and Tracy - as well as her portrayer, Kate Ford - will be leaving the series for good after this Sunday's episode since she was sentenced to fifteen years in jail.

But what happens with that unused footage in which Tracy was declared not guilty? It wasn't broadcast, but publicity photos have been released of her reaction to that verdict. Perhaps clips from the scene were shown on British television after the episode, during newscasts?

Could we consider that alternate ending to be the official view from another TV dimension? Perhaps from the "evil mirror universe" version of 'Coronation Street' in which such evil would be rewarded; where the soap opera is instead an immoral show where cheats and murderers always thrive!

Anyway, Kate Ford's off the "Corrie" menu. But here's the thing......

'Coronation Street' may end up running forever. It's been on the air since 1960 - 47 years!

So.... Should she still be alive, and if she was willing to do it, perhaps Kate Ford could come back to the show in 2022 so that the audience can see how she fared after all those years in prison.

I'm sure the hardcore fans at least would remember her by then. And even so, they could do plenty of lead-up to remind the others.



TV shows have established in the past that the televersions of celebrities are related to the fictional characters of the TV Universe.

Megan Russert of 'Homicide: Life On The Street' and Tim Russert of NBC News are related. Vera Louise Gorman of 'Alice' and Art Carney were distantly related cousins.

And the same kind of thing has happened in the Tooniverse.

Hank Hill, the main character of 'King Of The Hill', is cousins with bass player Dusty Hill of the group ZZTop.

It's never come up before on the series because Hank has always tried to protect his family from the shallow but enticing world of show business.

Maybe someday we'll find out the Griffins of 'Family Guy' are related to Kathy Griffin (if we haven't already). And based on recent news events, perhaps we'll see that Peter Griffin was ultimately responsible for smashing up the car of his "black sheep" cousin Eddie......



Earlier this year, in a tie-in with the movie, the Marvel Comics character "Ghost Rider" got his taxes prepared at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, Inc. But as the blog "It's Over, TV" (link to the left) pointed out, the Ghost Rider only manifests when there's evil nearby.

Now we know why he did so in the blipvert.....

from the news services:
The U.S. government has sued the operators of more than 125 Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc. (JTX.N) tax preparation offices, accusing them of cheating the U.S. Treasury out of more than $70 million through a "pervasive and massive series of tax-fraud schemes."

Another example of Life imitating Toobworld!


Tuesday, April 3, 2007


Tonight at 10 pm EST (check your local listings!), 'Boston Legal' will be presenting what can be truly called "a very special episode".

Using clips from a live production starring William Shatner on 'Studio One' fifty years ago, we'll see flashbacks to a much younger Denny Crane as he grapples with the very much delayed fallout from his first major trial victory.

With these clips, Ralph Bellamy and Steve McQueen will posthumously guest star; McQueen as the client and Bellamy as Denny Crane's father.

In actuality, the 'Studio One' episode, "The Defender", had Bellamy and Shatner playing Lawrence and Kenneth Preston, roles that would later be played by EG Marshall and Robert Reed in the TV series "The Defenders". (At one point in the original show, Bellamy calls Shatner "Kenny". I'm sure that will easily be tweaked in the audio booth to sound like "Denny".)

I don't know how much of the episode will be used tonight in 'Boston Legal', but look in the background for a young Ed Asner (with a full head of hair!) as Juror #2. Martin Balsam played the prosecutor and Ian Wolfe the judge, so they may show up tonight as well.....

(It wouldn't be the last time Shatner worked with Wolfe - the elderly actor portrayed Mr. Atoz in an episode of 'Star Trek'.)



"It isn't your time yet. But it'll happen.
The universe will take out its trash when it's ready."

That prophetic warning, given to LAPD corrupt cop Vic Mackey on 'The Shield', reminds me of Desmond's warning to Charlie about his ultimately inevitable death on 'Lost':

"The Universe has a way of course-correcting itself."

I'm not sure who gives Mackey that similar warning (I'm betting on Kavanaugh.), but perhaps he was given such insight by the White Guardian of 'Doctor Who' fame. (I believe the character presented itself to Desmond as a curio shop owner in the episode "Flashes Before Your Eyes".)

Just sayin' is all......



Here's a press release from BBC America which was released yesterday:

The entire channel is undergoing a "radical makeover" later this year. The channel will now "focus exclusively on bringing U.S. audiences the very best in contemporary British programs - including a greater emphasis on our world renowned news coverage," according to our new head honcho, Garth Ancier. Lots of great acquisitions to announce, including MI-5, the long-running youth soap Hollyoaks, Hotel Babylon, the new Jennifer Saunders comedy The Life and Times of Vivienne Vyle, Doctor Who spinoff Torchwood, and new seasons of Hex, Life On Mars, and Doctor Who.

I was linked to the story originally by Rob Buckley ("The Medium Is Not Enough", link to the left) who put it this way:

Feel sorry for America: BBC America has just bought Torchwood.


Having already seen all thirteen episodes of 'Torchwood', thanks to "Markhael", I don't have the same attitude towards the show. In fact, I may even be a little more interested in seeing it again now, if only from a televisiologist's point of view; to see how much had to be edited out to be palatable to an American Puritan audience.

And so long as 'MI-5'/'Spooks' and 'Life On Mars' are guaranteed a home, all's right with my world.

I'll also probably give a look-see to 'Hollyoaks', just to see what it's like and to see if there are any little tidbits to be picked out which I can give a Toobworld spin....

I'll have to check Ryan's website for British TV show reviews to find out more about 'Hotel Babylon' and the Jennifer Saunders show......



What would a New York Times-styled broadsheet look like in Toobworld?

Probably like Television City Chronicle.

Last year, did a fantastic spoof of the Wiki format with their "Teeveepedia". And I think it proved to be so popular that they kept it online for awhile, long after April Fool's Day.

For this year, they've modeled a newspaper after the Times, only all of its articles are written about TV shows as if they are reality. When they finally do review a TV show, they chose a TV show within a show - "Expose", from last week's episode of 'Lost'.

In Business notes, the fortunes of three oil companies are reported - Clampett, Ewing, and Carrington. The travails of a small-town football team are covered in Sports, where some kind of 'Twilight Zonish' backwater keeps them forever stuck in football season. And even the Iraqi war is looked upon as the plotline for a badly produced TV series. (The day's top story? The obituary for King Friday XIII from the Land of Make-Believe.

I'm not sure why the embedded YouTube video is there of one monkey grooming another, but maybe it's supposed to be one of those new BRAVO hairdresser reality shows.....

Even 'Battlestar Galactica' - which in the actual Toobworld is in another dimension - gets the New York Times treatment (""). And despite his numerous achievements in rescuing London from alien invasion over and over again, the Doctor is regarded as a manic-depressive with a shiny light.....

When you know you have about an hour to kill - at least! - why not pop in and check out Television City Chronicle? I don't know if you'll be glad you did, but it'll probably beat whatever you were planning on doing for that hour....


Monday, April 2, 2007


I wrote about this in the past - I love TV show episode titles. You don't see them on screen anymore (for the most part), but you can still find them listed at sites like and

Some of my favorites: "Son Of But Seriously, Folks" ('The Mary Tyler Moore Show'), "Tequila Mockingbird" ('Get Smart'), and "Any Old Port In The Storm" ('Columbo').

Even those that seem kind of corny when looking back at them - especially those from Quinn Martin classics like 'Barnaby Jones' ("To Catch A Dead Man" & "Death On Deposit") and 'Cannon' ("Come Watch Me Die" & "Memo From A Dead Man") - have an irresistable charm about them for me.

But I especially like it when a show carries through on a theme. All of the 'Man From U.N.C.L.E' episodes were "Affairs"; "Briefs" were the type of episodes in 'Dundee And The Culhane'; 'The Wild, Wild West' adventures were listed as "The Night Of... "; and most 'Remington Steele' episodes worked the word "Steele" into the title as a bad pun ("Steele Waters Run Deep").

So in my online trek looking for TV nuggets of interest, I found out that every episode of the short-lived 'Love, Inc.' was the name of another sitcom which somehow tied into the theme of the plotline. (It's an idea I've used for the Toobworld novel I've been working on for years, but I also use the titles of dramas and documentaries and specials.)

Best of all is that because these titles are not considered a part of Toobworld itself, then there's no Zonk in their use!

Here's a rundown of that list:

Living Single
Mad About You
Bosom Buddies
Family Ties
Hope & Faith
Thick and Thin
One on One
The Honeymooners
Three's Company
Arrested Development
Grace Under Fire
Hello, Larry
Major Dad
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Anything But Love
Fired Up
Full House
Dream On

Imagine the uproar if a show called 'Love, Inc.' had an episode entitled "Leave It To Beaver" or even "Family Ties". Ewwwww!

Of course, as with so many shows, they didn't even bother giving a title to their first episode which sold the series. The only time "Pilot" even makes sense in terms of the episode was in the first two-hour episode of 'Lost', thanks to the appearance of Greg Gunberg's character.

If it had not been for the fact that the show wasn't very popular, the theme could have run for years with so many sitcom titles to choose from - 'Oh, Baby', 'I Love Lucy', 'Sugar Time', 'The Golden Girls', 'The Odd Couple', 'Me And The Chimp', 'Platypus Man', and even 'Mr. Peepers'......

They could have given "Bonino" a whole new meaning!



Last week's episode of 'Lost' - "Expose" - was like "jungle noir". We learned that Paolo and Nikki, who were among the forty plus survivors of Oceanic 815 but whom we actually didn't meet until this season, were like Walter Neff and Phyllis Diedrichsen of "Double Indemnity". Nikki was the scheming seductress who got that sap Paolo to murder for her, and then they double-crossed each other which led to their deaths.

There are plenty of sites that go over all the Numbers references, plot points and Easter Eggs from this episode, so I won't rehash them all here. But these were the points most of interest for Toobworld Central:

So it turns out that the TV show snippet we heard in John Locke's episode "The Man From Tallahassee" was from the show within a show here, 'Expose' (with an accent over that last "e".)

Nikki Fernandez guest-starred in an episode of 'Expose' shot in Sydney just before she boarded the plane. Howie Zuckerman was the producer of the show who was also her lover whom Paolo poisoned.

The show, which was a lot like JJ Abrams' 'Alias', was in its fourth season. And John Locke had been in a wheelchair for four years.

Since Locke was watching the show before he was paralyzed, then that episode set in the Louvre must have been from the first season. (I've got a great title for that 'Expose' episode, which Hurley thought was better than 'Baywatch': "Farewell, My Louvre-ly". Okay, maybe not that great....)

John Locke was watching that show while eating dinner. He was interrupted by a caller at the door and we could see that it was still light outside. Since he was watching a first season episode during the first season, it was probably an 8 o'clock air-time. And it would have to be during the height of Daylight Savings Time. Thus, it could have been a repeat.

Or... it was on a cable network that didn't allow for the differences in time zones, so if it was aired at 8 or 9 pm on the East Coast, then Locke was watching it at 5 or 6 pm in Tustin, California.

Sure, it's trivial. But isn't that what 'Lost' and "Inner Toob" both traffic in?

I thought that perhaps the company which manufactured Paolo's nicotine gum might have been Widmore Labs. But a screen capture which I requested at the 'Lost' Easter Eggs site doesn't show any indication of that. Oh well, an opportunity missed; surely Widmore Labs made more than home pregnancy tests? (And it still could have been in the small print.)

I liked the popular theory that because Hurley mentioned how "the Cobra" in 'Expose' was revealed in Nikki's episode as being someone on the show that the audience knew for four seasons, then it was a clue that the mysterious leader of the Others, Jacob, would be revealed next season as a character we already know.

My money (in quatloos) is on Christian Shepherd being Jacob. You think he's dead? I think he was injected with that medusa spider venom so that he only looked dead to his son Jack and to those Aussie docs!

And speaking of the medusa spiders, now that they've been introduced into the show and the island's eco-system, I hope they won't be forgotten. They should claim another victim, one who comes out of the paralysis before getting buried. And only then do they realize the effects are similar to what happened to Paolo and Nikki.... uh oh......

Lastly, I have a question about an earlier episode, "Enter 77"....

If Sayid chose to live in Paris, shouldn't he have some understanding of French? Then how come he had to ask Shannon to translate the inscription on the map?

Maybe he understood it, but couldn't read it?

Just askin', is all.....



All this time while I was charting the brackets challenges in the Chicago Tribune and in the Florida Times-Union, the News & Observer of Raleigh, North Carolina was holding its own challenge. But whereas the contest in Chicago was for the best of the current TV Characters, and the Times-Union was searching for the greatest ever Sitcom Character, the News & Observer wanted to find the greatest TV character of all time. And to do so, they allowed not only dramatic characters, sitcom characters and those from the Tooniverse, but also from the world of daytime drama as well.

As such, Erica Kane of 'All My Children' made it into the Elite Eight!

One of my friends and a frequent commenter here, Jaia, alerted me to this new challenge... just in time to read the final results. Who knows? Maybe had "Inner Toob" been able to report on the action just a little bit sooner, the outcome might have been different....

Here's how their tent city of Bracketsville was first constructed in Raleigh:

Lucy Ricardo vs. Joy Turner Florence Johnston vs. Suzanne Sugarbaker
Murphy Brown vs. Raven Baxter Betty Suarez vs. Gabrielle Solis
Rachel Green vs. Dorothy Zbornak Roseanne Conner vs. Samantha Stevens
Laverne DeFazio vs. Carrie Bradshaw Mary Richards vs. Julia Baker

Barney Fife vs. Robert Barone Alex Keaton vs. Sam Malone
Gilligan vs. Jed Clampett Heathcliff Huxtable vs. George Costanza
Fred Sanford vs. Fonzie Archie Bunker vs. Arnold Jackson
Hawkeye Pierce vs. JJ Evans Homer Simpson vs. Jack McFarland

Erica Kane vs. Kelly Garrett Lt. Anita Van Buren vs. Dr. Michaela Quinn
Lt. Colleen McMurphy vs. Capt. Kathryn Janeway Dana Scully vs. Sydney Barstow
Alexis Carrington vs. Brenda Walsh Buffy Summers vs. Catherine Willows
Mary Beth Lacey vs. Olivia Benson Dr. Miranda Bailey vs. Grace Van Owen

Jack Bauer vs. Ricardo Tubbs Marshall Matt Dillon vs. James Rockford
Thomas Magnum vs. Capt. Frank Furillo Capt. James T. Kirk vs. Col. Steve Austin
Dr. Gregory House vs. Sgt. Andy Sipowicz JR Ewing vs. Hiro Nakamura
President Josiah Bartlet vs. BA Baracus Tony Soprano vs. Dr. Jack Shepherd

Pretty powerful lineup. Just off the top of my head though - where are Sgt. Chip Saunders, CJ Cregg, Sawyer or Hurley, Mr. Ed, Jeannie, Uncle Fester, Granny Clampett, Luke Spencer, Victor Newman? Was it one character per show? And where are the British characters? Emma Peel and the Doctor?

So that list got winnowed down to the following:

Lucy Ricardo vs. Florence Johnston Murphy Brown vs. Betty Suarez
Rachel Green vs. Samantha Stevens Carrie Bradshaw vs. Mary Richards

Barney Fife vs. Alex Keaton Gilligan vs. Dr. Huxtable
Fred Sanford vs. Archie Bunker Hawkeye Pierce vs. Homer Simpson

Erica Kane vs. Dr. Quinn Lt. McMurphy vs Dana Scully
Alexis Carrington vs. Buffy Summers Mary Beth Lacey vs. Dr. Bailey

Jack Bauer vs. James Rockford Thomas Magnum vs. Captain Kirk
Dr. House vs. JR Ewing President Bartlet vs. Tony Soprano

Then it was on to the Sweet Sixteen (if I'm doing my math correctly).....

Lucy Ricardo vs. Murphy Brown Rachel Green vs. Mary Richards

Barney Fife vs. Dr. Huxtable Archie Bunker vs. Homer Simpson

Erica Kane vs. Dana Scully Buffy Summers vs. Dr. Bailey

Jack Bauer vs. Captain Kirk Dr. House vs. Tony Soprano

(I liked that match-up between the two Jersey Boys. The cane could have been the deciding factor - to the back of the head!)

Lucy Ricardo vs. Mary Richards

Barney Fife vs. Homer Simpson

Erica Kane vs. Dr. Miranda Bailey

Jack Bauer vs. Dr. House

And then... the Final Four:

Lucy Ricardo vs. Barney Fife

Dr. Bailey vs. Jack Bauer

The final match-up was a classic battle of the sexes and of comedy vs. drama:

Jack Bauer vs. Lucy Ricardo

You'd think ol' Barn would have had hometown advantage, this being a Raleigh-based competition. But surprisingly, Lucy went on to face the King of Pain and she was ultimately crowned the Queen.

According to staff writer Matt Ehlers, one particular entrant had an interesting fan base. The TV Crossover Hall of Fame inductee for February of 2007, Florence Johnston, garnered only two votes - one from a prisoner in Central Prison and the other from Clay Aiken.

Ehlers didn't know what to make of that, but he figured there was a "Movin' On Up" joke in there somewhere.

It makes me wonder now if there were other newspapers around the country who engaged in a Bracketsville-type competition like this for TV characters.

But I'll be bleeped if I'm going to type up all those bracket entries again!



And oh yeah... before I go to bed.....

I dood it.

Not sure if anybody even noticed them, but yesterday's "Inner Toob" reports - one about Chris Sligh joining a Broadway musical based on 'Lost', and the other about James 'Psych' Roday making a TV movie about 'Freakazoid!' - were bogus.

The 'Freakazoid!' story had already been written - at least in my head - for a "Wish-Craft" post. It's still something I think should happen!

My only regret is that I didn't mention the Widmore Theatre being on 42nd Street......



It's all over in the Sunshine State, and apparently they just don't love Lucy enough down there....

Barney Fife won the title of the Greatest Sitcom Character, as chosen by the participants in a brackets-styled battle hosted by the Florida Times-Union.

Here are the final results:

BARNEY FIFE 1,253 votes
LUCY RICARDO 1,034 votes

You know, it might have been nice if Lucy and Ethel got to meet Barney during their trip down to Florida with a stopover in Mayberry. You know the episode - where they gave a lift to Elsa Lanchester, whom they suspected to be a homicidal maniac.

Now that would have been a perfect scenario for ol' Barn!

It wasn't the landslide seen in the Chicago challenge for the best of the current TV characters, in which Starbuck of 'Battlestar Galactica' trounced Jack Bauer of '24'. But when it came to defeating Lucy, Barney nipped it in the bud.

Sounds rather suggestive in that context.....



Well, thanks to Roger Carlin, TV Eye (See the link to the left), I now know the reason why my taping of Sunday night programming was all screwed up when I attempted to watch it this morning.

Apparently, both my computer and my VCR thought Saturday night was the official change to Daylight Savings Time, and had not been informed of the clock change a few weeks back. So an hour after taping the 'Saturday Night Live' repeat, those two clocks advanced an hour and I never thought to check the VCR. (I did notice the computer one, but never wondered why it did so. "Miguelito Junior" has always been a little... off.)

Damn. So I missed some juicy Toobworldian stuff: one of the guys from ZZTop on 'King of the Hill', a new 'Brothers & Sisters', 'The Dresden Files', and the rejiggered 'Star Trek' about the Tholian Web. And that one especially bleeped me off since I had only just figured out where to find those remastered classic 'Trek' episodes and wanted to start watching them!

Oh well.


Sunday, April 1, 2007


Now that he's been voted off of 'American Idol', Chris Sligh will be free to make his Broadway debut in the musical adaptation of 'Lost' at the Widmore Theatre beginning this fall.



Well, this should be interesting....

In the past, we've seen actors play live-action versions of cartoon characters. John Goodman and Rick Moranis were Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble of 'The Flintstones'. Mark Addy and Stephen Baldwin followed up in a sequel in the same roles, with Alan Cumming as the Great Gazoo thrown in for good measure.

Dave Thomas and Sally Kellerman were 'Boris And Natasha', while Jason Alexander and Rene Russo played the same roles in 'The Adventures of Rocky And Bullwinkle'. (Christopher Neame and Robert DeNiro were their respective Fearless Leaders.)

Brendan Fraser was 'George Of The Jungle' and for Toobworld, there's also Patrick Warburton as 'The Tick'.

Now we'll have a new addition, thanks to a TV movie being developed for HBO by Dreamworks:

"Freakazoid!" with James Roday!

I think it'll be a good match. Roday has demonstrated, both in his TV series 'Psych' and in the movie "Repli-Kate", to have the sense of humor as well as the physical energy to play the slapstick-prone superhero. And even if there had been no technological advances in CGI since 1994, Jim Carrey's "The Mask" proves that the film-makers can more than handle the demands of the character.

Apparently, "Freakazoid!" will be rushed into production in order to accommodate James Roday's schedule. I guess he needs to wrap it up before 'Psych' goes into production for its next season. (They're speeding this through channels so quickly, that they don't even have a page up for it yet at either HBO or at!)

Frankly, I'm surprised that Steven Spielberg, who also executive-produced the original cartoon series, isn't aiming for a bigger market on the big screen. But obviously he knows the market better than me and probably has it already figured whether or not it would make a dent in the glut of summer escapist flicks. Besides they can always go the movie theatre route with its release overseas.

I think the blend of James Roday and the character of Dexter Douglas (aka Freakazoid!) is a perfect fit. But whatever happens, I just hope Ed Asner is on board as Mike Cosgrove!