Saturday, October 20, 2007
MATRICULATIN' WITH 'EM
Once again in this new TV season, Stanford was cast in a bad light when it came to their alumni (or at the very least, those who attended the school). The other references were in 'Boston Legal', 'Chuck', and 'Reaper'.
Makes me wonder if there's some conspiracy among script writers who couldn't get into Stanford back in their college days....
Drake LeLane made an interesting observation:
"Yes.... [it's] fitting that all the more mysterious season enders this year had Bob Dylan factoring in. 'Battlestar Galactica', 'The Sopranos', 'John From Cincinnati', and now 'Mad Men'."
Of them all, 'Battlestar Galactica' and its use of "All Along The Watchtower" is the only one which becomes a part of the Toobworld landscape (albeit in an alternate TV dimension). Four of the "Five Final Cylons" may have been revealed in the season finale to be Anders, Tyrol, Tory, and Tigh because they could hear the strange music in their heads as well as the strange lyrics:
"There must be some way out of here
Said the Joker to the Thief.
There's too much confusion.
I can't get no relief."
Some have speculated that they are four of the "Final Five", while others have theorized that they are descendants of the High Priests of legend and so the information is encoded in their DNA.
I don't know; being so wrapped up in the Toobworld concept, it hardly matters to me, as I have to concern myself more with the place of the original 'Galactica' in the TV Universe.
But Ron Moore, one of the masterminds behind this version, had this to say in an interview published in the Post-Gazette:
"It's more that they arrived at a certain point in space and they were made aware of whothey are. The music manifests a dawning awareness. These are four of the final five, which puts them in a separate category from everybody else. There are reasons for that I can't really get into. We'll be playing out those plot lines for quite a while."
With the other shows, the use of Dylan music is a flavoring to a scene, unheard by the characters and meant only for us in the audience viewing at home in the Trueniverse. If any of them registered the fact that there was a musical soundtrack, that would mark them as being "tele-cognizant". Tele-cognizance is the awareness that one exists in a universe based on Television.
David Addison of 'Moonlighting' is a good example of this condition.
We know Bob Dylan exists in Toobworld - his televersion was seen in an episode of 'Dharma & Greg', jamming with Dharma on the drums. So if and when the Galactica fleet reaches Earth (Apparently Starbuck has already reached the planet and can guide the fleet there), will those "Final Cylons" seek out Bob Dylan?
The answer, my friend, is -# Well, you get the idea......
Merrick of "Ain't It Cool News" has read the script and provides a summary of the plot, the characters, and the capabilities of the new K.I.T.T., the Knight Industries Three Thousand. Supposedly the main human character, Mike Tracer, will have a distinct link to the show's past.
If it does prove to be a true sequel to the original 'Knight Rider', I'm in for the pilot TV-movie that launches the project. I was never much of a fan of the original, but I always did love the concept of a car with William Daniels voice. I can only hope the upgrade has great vocal chops as well.
Here's one suggestion - go for a feminine AI along the lines of Kathleen Turner or Cathy Moriarty, something that might provide a little "auto-erotic" give and take in the dialogue.
Friday, October 19, 2007
Kirk: Chris Pine (Smokin' Aces, Surrender Dorothy, The Princess Diaries 2)
Spock: Zachary Quinto (recurring roles on "Heroes", "24")
Nero (the bad guy): Eric Bana (Troy, Munich, Black Hawk Down)
Scotty: Simon Pegg (Grindhouse, Mission: Impossible III, Shaun of the Dead[played Shaun], "Band Of Brothers")
Uhura: Zoe Saldana ("Six Degrees", Dirty Deeds, The Terminal, Center Stage)
Chekov: Anton Yelchin ("Huff", Alpha Dog, "The Practice")
Sulu: John Cho (last night's "Ugly Betty", "Kitchen Confidential", HaroldAnd Kumar Go To White Castle [played Harold], American Wedding)
Old Spock: Leonard Nimoy (who?)
As I told him, I wanted to see Gary Sinise as Dr. McCoy, but I have no complaints otherwise. Well, as much as I enjoy John Cho, he doesn't look like Takei to me.
I'm hoping they'll have Christopher Pike and Robert April in the cast of characters.
My brother raises an interesting concern - he's hoping Kirk's experience with the Kobayashi Maru test will be factored into the plot at some point. I hate when established continuity is ignored or sacrificed for what is thought to be a more exciting script.
That's all I have to say on the matter at this time.....
I also want to see Kevin Reilly, Finnegan, and Governor Kodos show up somehow in the plot.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
THE HAT SQUAD: NOBLE BARNES
When it came to Joey Bishop's eponymous sitcom, I used to think that for the sake of Toobworld, I'd have to consider it as two different shows - in much the same way I once wanted to do with 'Burke's Law'/'Amos Burke, Secret Agent'. I've since changed my mind, but the idea of splitting one show into two different dimensions still holds true for 'Alias Smith And Jones' - the dividing line caused by the death of Pete Duel, who was replaced by Roger Davis as Hannibal Heyes.
Getting back to 'The Joey Bishop Show'.....
In the first "show", which ran for only one season (1961-62), Bishop played Joey Barnes. Joey was a Hollywood PR man who would often get in trouble at the firm and with his famous clients because of meddling interference by various members of his family.
In the second "series" (1962-65), Bishop was still Joey Barnes. But whereas that first Joey Barnes was a bit of a schlub, now he was more assertive and self-confident, married to a Texas rose named Ellie, and he was the host of a successful late-night talk show.
The temptation was to ship the first season off to some alternate universe as it wasn't very successful. But it featured appearances by Danny Thomas as both Danny Williams and as himself; how could you lose something like that from the main Toobworld? So I was just looking at an episode guide for the show at TV.com and it looks like the revision of the plot wasn't quite as abrupt as I was once led to believe.
Instead of coming back from the summer hiatus with the brand new plotline thrown out there to confuse the audience, elements of the new version were introduced as the first season was winding down. Ellie was introduced as a love interest, and Joey was offered the chance to host his own show. By the time the summer was over, Joey was hosting that show; he was married to Ellie; and best of all, the rest of his family stayed behind in California.
Over the next several seasons, Joey Barnes was able to interact with several celebrities playing fictionalized versions of themselves. ("Televersions" in the Toobworld mythos are a legitimate form of crossover to link shows together, and an appearance by Milton Berle makes for a guaranteed lock for inclusion in the "Great Link".) Even better, Joey and Ellie hosted Rusty Williams, formerly of 'Make Room For Daddy'/'The Danny Thomas Show', while he went to college. (Apparently Danny and the rest of the Williams clan more than likely moved out to Hollywood for the career opportunities.)
So here's a salute to Joey Barnes and to the late, great Joey Bishop.
Son of a gun.
PRINCE OF THEBAS II: REIGNING CABS & DOCS
But he's also well represented in the medical profession in New York City, having played doctors in three different sitcoms. His doctor is named in only one of those shows, so we could make the assumption that he is Dr. Sundram for all three sitcoms.
- The One Hundredth (1998) TV Episode .... Joey's Doctor
"Everybody Loves Raymond"
- Golf (1997) TV Episode .... Doctor Sundram
"Ned and Stacey"
- Gut Feeling (1996) TV Episode .... Doctor
- The City (1994) TV Episode .... Cabbie #1
- George Tells the Truth (1995) TV Episode .... Inzamamulhaq Siddiqui
During his first appearance on the show, Siddiqui mentioned that back in his country he was a doctor. So both cousins went into the same occupation back home, but only Sundram was able to make that transition once they emigrated to America. Who knows? Perhaps Siddiqui was able to later overcome whatever hurdles were keeping him from getting back into the medical field.
(I refrained from suggesting that Siddiqui and Sundram were one and the same character because not only were the names different, - for which a splainin could always be fabricated - but also because the timelines overlap.)
- Eric's Book (1996) TV Episode .... The Cabbie
"Can't Hurry Love"
- The Elizabeth Taylor Episode (1996) TV Episode .... Cabbie
"Caroline in the City"
- Caroline and the Critics (1997) TV Episode .... Koothrappally, the Cabbie
Now, 'Can't Hurry Love' doesn't have Theba listed in their contribution to the "Elizabeth Taylor Night" on CBS, but I remember him being in it. During the episode, the show's characters realized they didn't have enough money for the cab fare so they rooted about in the back of the taxi to find spare change. And that's when they found the string of black pearls belonging to La Liz, which Fran Fine had lost earlier in the evening.
Fran had a character played by Rosie O'Donnell as her cab driver, and Annie O'Donnell had a character played by Iqbal Theba for hers. (Same cab, different shifts.)
You may have noticed while glancing over that list that 'The George Carlin Show' gave his recurring role of a fellow cabbie a name - Inzamamulhaq Siddiqui. And yet when he appeared on 'Caroline In The City' as a cabbie, his name was Koothrappally. This is an easy one to splain away.
Koothrappally was his nickname! Yeah, that's the ticket!
Iqbal Theba also appeared as a driver in another sitcom:
- Fire and Nice (1998) TV Episode .... Driver
I'm thinking that as a sideline to make more money, Inzamuh-# er, Insamulq-# um.... Dr. Sundram's lookalike cousin also took on side jobs as a limo driver. That's why he was Gwen's driver for a big "spontaneous" date.
In the same year we saw him first appear as a cabbie, we also saw him delivering pizza to four girls living together in Brooklyn:
- U.N.I.T.Y. (1994) TV Episode .... Pizza Man
Again, it's a simple splainin. He was making a little extra on the side (and probably under the table) by delivering pizzas.
It's not going to happen anytime soon, but the combination of both characters, Dr. Sundram and his identical cousin Inzamamulhaq "Koothrappally" Siddiqui, will make for an excellent addition to the TV Crossover Hall of Fame for June, the perfect month for twins!
The third episode, "Speak Now Or Forever Hold Your Piece", also contained deleted scenes. One of these showed Shawn and Gus being chewed out by the Police Chief at the De La Cruz Hotel, and after she left, Shawn pointed out that Bo Diddley was sitting in the lobby.
Bo Diddley never made another appearance in the episode; there was no reason for him to have been there at all. They didn't even get a very good joke out of his presence in the hotel lobby. So excising the scene from the broadcast episode didn't affect the overall story in the least. I suppose as long as they still paid him, Mr. Diddley probably didn't give a bleep.
(It could also be that it wasn't even the real Bo Diddley, but an "incredible simulation" as they used to say in those "Beatlemania" blipverts. We never see his full face, as he keeps his hand over it. And even though the hat seems signature to the classic Bo Diddley look, that could have been whipped up as a wardrobe trick.)
I would have really liked to have included this scene into the main Toobworld, even though it breaks the rule of ever being broadcast, - but! It would mean I'd have to accept the other deleted scenes as well, and some of those conflict with what already was a part of Toobworld. For instance, the scene with Lassiter clashing with the groom's grandmother outside the service leads into his entrance into the wedding chapel. And because of the encounter with the old bat, he and Juliet engage in some dialogue about it. However, in their entrance as seen on TV, Juliet and "Lassie" enter silently; the two scenes can't be meshed.
So the deleted scenes will just have to be selections from this episode of 'Psych' as seen in some alternate TV dimension. As such, it can be added to Bo Diddley's resume for inclusion into the TV Crossover Hall of Fame, League of Themselves division - but with an asterisk for belonging to an alternate dimension of the TV Universe.
Here's what Bo Diddley so far has on his set list:
"According to Jim"
- Bo Diddley (2003) TV Episode .... Himself
Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake (1991) (TV) .... Himself
TV commercials for Nike sneakers (1990s)
It's an odd mixture, but distinctive, and that seems appropriate for Ellas Otha McDaniel (his real name).
Here's hoping Bo Diddley is feeling better - he suffered a heart attack back in August and finally returned to his Florida home in September....
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
SMILY ROUND THE LIPS
Since they never actually go to the concert and it could have been anyone, why the Flaming Lips? Was it some sort of promotional tie-in, or just a shout-out to their infamous appearance on "Beverly Hills 90210" more than a decade ago?
3:42 PM, October 17, 2007
Alan Sepinwall said...
Since they never actually go to the concert and it could have been anyone, why the Flaming Lips?
Presumably for the same reason that a "Friday Night Lights" episode last year talked about an Old 97's concert without anyone going to it: because the writer of the episode is a fan of the band.
3:43 PM, October 17, 2007
'Beverly Hills 90210' - "Love Hurts" (1995)
According to TV.com, Valerie asked Steve to secure the rock group "The Flaming Lips" after she canceled Ray's bookings. Donna wrongly blamed David for Ray's departure after Valerie lied to her that David was the one responsible for Ray leaving town.
Looking into that '90210' episode, I can see why Big Ted considered the episode "infamous". Besides the chance to see the Flaming Lips perform, the audience also got to see a rape attempt at knife-point, a guy get hit in the head with a baseball bat, and another guy who served time for sexual assault get run out of town.
At any rate, both shows acknowledge the Flaming Lips as existing in their corners of the TV Universe. Therefore, the music group connects 'Beverly Hills, 90210' to 'Reaper' and brings them one step closer to Hall of Fame qualification via the League of Themselves.
But these guys rocked the house!"
'Beverly Hills, 90210'
METHOD TO MY "REAPER" MADNESS
I have a suggestion.....
We've been told nearly episode that Andi's Dad has died, and she's really bummed out about that.......
So what if, for the big season finale, Sam ends up having to send the soul of his unrequited love's Dad back to Hell?
It might be tough to think of Andi's Dad as being an escaped soul from Hell. For her sake, it would be nice to think of the guy as being in Heaven.
But even though he may have been a very good father to her, he may still have been capable of doing very, very bad things in Life.......
I would think a plotline like that might go a long way towards giving this currently lightweight show more ooomph. Ray Wise can't do it all by himself!
Just sayin', is all.....
But apparently, not all of the sentient dinosaurs perished; it would seem, based on other TV shows, that at least one species survived to evolve down through the ages into what humans would call "dragons". (Over in the Tooniverse, many species of dinosaurs survived, still sentient, but they became the slaves of the emerging dominant species - humans. But again, they also "devolved" into dragons; some of whom were evil killers lusting after gold. A more gentle breed of dragons finally passed through the dimensional veil to establish their own lands where they could live in peace with limited human contact.)
During the Middle Ages, one of the dragons was challenged to combat by St. George. However, the dragon was reluctant to fight, as he was more of a dilettante who wanted nothing more than to be left alone in order to write his poetry. He considered himself a troubadour, not a terrible lizard. Luckily, the reluctant dragon and St. George were able to work out a plan in which their reputations could be upheld and the villagers would be satisfied that they were safe.
Another sentient dragon from that time was placed in a magical form of suspended animation and was revived in the 20th Century. He ended up in New Haven, Connecticut, where he found employment as a weatherman's sidekick on a local TV station, WWEN. (It could be that this dragon was descended from Charlene Sinclair. In relation to that, the reluctant dragon who faced St. George may have been descended from Charlene's older brother, Robbie Sinclair. By the way - the Sinclair children were all adopted in the egg stage.)
There was a race of intergalactic superior beings who were known in legend as "The Preservers", who transported basic human stock to various planets in order for them to flourish in evolution. The same was also done for whales. It could be that it was also done for these dragons, for we saw that the Space Family Robinson encountered a space-faring dragon and the knight who pursued her. (Sir Sagramonte and Gundemar could have been the reincarnations of St. George and the dragon troubadour respectively, doomed to relive their entwined karma down through the ages.)
Other species of dinosaurs evolved to be more humanoid in appearance; but they could have been from a different species of reptilian life, left behind on Earth by those same Preservers from some other planet. That would mean they could be related to the intergalactic humanoid lizards who tried to take over the Earth back in the 1980s. (Among the tribe of Iddiocy to which I belong, there is a name for such alien lizards. It is "Getorpho".)
I don't know if it's happening on the main Toobworld, or in some alternate TV dimesnion, but there are intelligent dinosaurs who still walk among the humanfolk. But they adapted a scientific technique in which they were able to assume human form and thus escape detection.
<'Shirley Temple's Storybook' - "The Reluctant Dragon"
'Star Trek' - "The Paradise Syndrome"
"Star Trek IV - The Voyage Home"
'Lost In Space' - "The Questing Beast"
'Land Of The Lost'
'Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World' - "More Than Human"
'V: The Mini-Series'
'V: The Series'
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
PRINCE OF THEBAS
That was before I saw Iqbal Theba wearing nothing but a Speedo in last night's episode of 'Chuck'.
If you didn't see it, let me just say that there was a reason why the episode was called "Chuck Vs. The Wookie".........
Monday, October 15, 2007
KEITH LONGMAN: HIS DAYS WERE NUMBERED
Now I've come up with a new backstory for the Number Two seen in "Do Not Forsake Me, Oh My Darling". (The working title for that episode was "Face Unknown", which I think better fits the tone of the other titles in the series.) And this backstory also wraps around to provide a 'fini' for the character as well......
Keith Longman was a scientific genius who made his fortune with his advancements in bio-engineering. His most personal project was in cryogenics, as he had a stake in the outcome - Keith Longman had a bad heart and he knew he would be dead before the 1970s were ushered in. And so he worked feverishly with a hand-picked team of technicians to build a cryogenics chamber in the basement of his mansion.
The super-powers of the Free World recognized Keith Longman's scientific genius and saw in him the perfect candidate to help them utilize the mind-exchange technology developed by Professor Jacob Seltzman. They wanted to track down the reclusive scientist so that they could force him to complete the process.
In January of 1968, Longman was installed as the new Number Two at a secret installation known as "The Village". This coastal community, which resembled the legendary Portmeirion, Wales, was used as a limited access residence for those hidden away by the super-powers of the Free World for one reason or another.
One such "prisoner" was known only as Number Six in The Village, although he had been NATO and MI6 agent John Drake in his previous life. Number Six was the reason Keith Longman was brought to The Village as Number Two. Six was reportedly the last person to see Professor Seltzman before he vanished. So Longman subjected Drake to the experimental mind-exchange and let him loose in London. Longman figured that with Drake's mind trapped in another man's body, he would go rushing to Seltzman's secret location, leading the powers who ran The Village straight to the scientist.
The ploy proved successful, but Professor Seltzman ultimately won out - not only did Number Six get his original body back, but the Professor himself gained a new body and was able to escape once again, disappearing for good.
The need for his services in The Village at an end, Keith Longman was returned to his former life where he was reunited with his daughters Vanessa and Stella. By this point in his life, Longman knew his heart condition was worsening and so he threw himself back into his cryogenics experiments, in hopes of perfecting the system before Death could claim him.
In the early autumn of 1968 (although it would be January of 1969 when the tale was seen on TV), Longman volunteered himself as the first human test subject before the process was perfected. But then, he had no choice - he suffered a major heart attack before they could test the system on his ideal test case, Simon Templar.
Longman's second-in-command on the project estimated that it might take twenty years to unthaw him, once the process to do so was perfected and if the heart transplant process was a successful certainty by then. That would have meant by 1989 or thenabouts; it's been about forty years on now, in Toobworld time. And it's my belief that Mr. Longman is still in his cryogenic freezer at his English estate, cared for by his now aged daughter Vanessa, if not by his other daughter, Stella.
And that's all the information... information... information... that I have.
'The Saint' - "The Man Who Gambled With Life"
'The Prisoner' - "Do Not Forsake Me, Oh My Darling"
'Danger Man'/'Secret Agent'
Sunday, October 14, 2007
RE: "ODYSSEY 5"
I'll hold off until I've seen all twenty or so episodes of the series before figuring out where it all stands in the greater TV Universe - after all, the basic premise would have catastrophic consequences for Toobworld! I get the feeling there was no resolution to the series, but as it's been five years in Toob-time since they were sent back into the past, just two months since the destruction of the Earth, I have to figure the crew of the Odyssey had to be successful in their mission.
Twenty weeks of episodes should give me plenty of time to thunk up some theories that hopefully can tie into other TV shows!
In writing up this short post, I stumbled across this blog entry from "PurpleSlog", which is the kind of Wish-Craft that I think most Toobworld visitors would enjoy......