Saturday, August 21, 2010


Since Toobworld Central paid tribute to Robert Culp with the induction of Hoby Gilman (his character from 'Trackdown') into the TV Crossover Hall Of Fame, it just didn't feel as though it was enough.

Therefore, by the power invested in me by me, let it be known that Robert Culp is being inducted into the Hall of Fame as well.

Due to his membership in the League of Themselves, Mr. Culp has these three credits to justify his qualifications for induction:

"The Jack Benny Program"
- The Airport (1957) "Law & Order"
- D-Girl (1997)

"The Chris Isaak Show"
- Isaakland (2002)

It may not be much of an honor, but it means a lot around these parts.....


Not much need for a chuck wagon full of videos this Saturday, but since we're celebrating the TV Western this month, I thought this one should get some Toob-Time......

Among those featured are:
Sally Kellerman, Dabney Coleman, Burgess Meredith, Telly Savalas, Cesar Romero, Mariette Hartley, Ricardo Montalban, Leslie Nielsen, James Coburn, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Beau Bridges, David Cassidy, Ron Howard, Harry Dean Stanton, Carroll O'Connor, Dennis Hopper, Robert Culp, Richard Thomas, Rip Torn, Buddy Ebsen, Stefanie Powers, Jack Lord, Jodie Foster, Slim Pickens, Dean Stockwell, Ben Johnson, Robert Vaughn, Louis Gossett Jr., Jack Warden, Claude Akins, Suzanne Pleshette, Bruce Dern, Marlo Thomas, Tom Bosley, George Kennedy, Leonard Nimoy, James Doohan, DeForest Kelley, Mike Farrell.

The combination at the end was especially toob-worthy!



For that suggestion about how the sandwich could talk in those orange juice commercials of the early 90's, here's the guy who would be the brother to the poor schmuck before he got transformed into a sandwich by Jeannie II......





Gregory Walcott

As I splained yesterday in the "Bubbly Springs Gang" post, the gang of outlaws who met Bret Maverick at the Bubbly Springs hotel, thinking that he was Foxy Smith, were probably all escaped mental patients from a nearby asylum.

So even if this wasn't the real Cole Younger, he believed that he was, suffering as he was from Famous Impostors Syndrome.

He also had control issues, always insisting that he was in charge; and he had an unhealthy attachment to the woman who called herself Belle Starr and who was just as crazy as he was.

The general rule of thumb is that for any one particular actor to be considered the official portrayal of an historical figure, they have to have done so in their own TV series (for example, Wayne Maunder as Custer), or several times over in any series or in a variety of series (Simon Callow as Charles Dickens), or had a TV movie or mini-series about them (Elizabeth Taylor as Poker Alice). O'Bviously if there is more than one TV movie or mini-series detailing that character's life, then I either go for the most detailed one or the earliest. (One of these days I'll have to do that with a character like John F. Kennedy). All the others would then be banished to alternate TV dimensions, leaving only the guest-starring portrayals to be splained away as to the differences in appearance.

With Cole Younger, I haven't made up my mind yet about who should be the official portrayal. There was no one series, mini-series, or TV movie that focused specifically on him. But I am leaning toward John Milford, who co-starred in the Christopher Jones' series 'The Legend Of Jesse James'.

Here are the other tele-versions of Cole Younger as seen on TV:

The Plot to Kill: Jesse James (2006) Played by Brandon Hylton

"Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman"
- Baby Outlaws (1995) Played by Ian Bohen

"Little House on the Prairie"
- The Older Brothers (1983) Played by Geoffrey Lewis

Belle Starr (1980) Played by Cliff Potts

The Last Ride of the Dalton Gang (1979) Played by Dick Autry

- The Younger Brothers' Younger Brother (1972) Played by Strother Martin

The Intruders (1970) Played by Gene Evans

- Hondo and the Judas (1967) Played by Richard Bakalyan

"The Legend of Jesse James" (1965) Played by John Milford

- One Way Ticket (1962) Played by Philip Carey

"Shirley Temple Theatre"
- Rebel Gun (1961) Played by Robert Sampson

"Overland Trail"
- Perilous Passage (1960) Played by Robert J. Wilke

- Shadow of Jesse James (1960) Played by Richard Coogan

"Tales of Wells Fargo"
- Cole Younger (1960) Played by Royal Dano

- Full House (1959) TV episode, Gregory Walcott

"Stories of the Century"
- The Younger Brothers (1954) Played by George Wallace

As for Gregory Walcott's portrayal, who was he really? Plenty of cowboys in Walcott's resume from the 50's to the early 60's, but many of them were marshalls and sheriffs. Still, they could just as easily lose their minds as much as anybody else, so I wouldn't remove them from consideration. In 'Bonanza' alone, Walcott played 7 characters, so surely one of them - if they survived the episode, that is, - could be spared to later go mad and think that he was actually Cole Younger.....


Friday, August 20, 2010


It took me longer to finish the second volume of "Crossovers" by Win Scott Eckert, because I found more and more TV crossovers that had previously escaped my notice. And that meant taking a lot of notes!

If only the Toobworld Dynamic could absorb more than just movies and online content - say, comic books, novels, and radio plays - there would be far more to expand the mosaic. (This is especially true in the case of 'Witchblade'.)

But there was one cross-universe link that I had seen before but which escaped my memory until Win brought it up: vampiric cowboys Lyle and Tector Gorch in an episode of 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer'.

The Brothers Gorch were better known in the movie universe (the "Cineverse" as Craig Shaw Gardner calls it) from Sam Peckinpah's classic genre-changing Western "The Wild Bunch". They were played by Ben Johnson and Warren Oates, but in the "Bad Eggs" episode, they were played by James Parks and Jeremy Raitchford.

Now an argument could be made that they looked different from their movie counterparts because vampirism altered their appearances. (The theory would be that they didn't die right away in that Mexican shoot-out, but that vampires - apparently quite prevalent south of the border - later came to feast on them and turned them in the process.)

But if that was the case, then the same theory should have held true for other vampires like Bill Compton, John Mitchell, and Erik Northman.

However, in the 'Buffy' episode "Giles refers to them slaughtering a Mexican village in 1886 - similar to the event that ends the movie, but the movie is set in 1913" (from the
So rather than the TV Universe absorbing "The Wild Bunch" out of the movie universe - as was the case with the 1966 'Batman', 'Maverick', 'Dragnet', the original 'McHale's Navy' movies (NOT the remake!), and the 'Star Trek' franchise - Lyle and Tector Gorch of "Bad Eggs" stand as counterparts to the Lyle and Tector of the movie, which is the same situation for characters like Hawkeye Pierce and Trapper John, Charlie Allnut and Rooster Cogburn (both played in TV pilots by Warren Oates), James West and Artemus Gordon, and the Family Addams.



Pictured, l to r:
Billy the Kid, Jim Dalton, Sam Bass, Cole Younger, Ben Thompson,
Black Bart, Belle Starr, Jesse James, and Robert Clay Allison
Or so they claimed.....
(Bret Maverick is seated in front.)

In the 'Maverick' episode "Full House", Bret Maverick won a diamond stickpin off a gambler named Foxy Smith. However, it turned out that stickpin served as Foxy's identification for a gang of outlaws in Bubbly Springs, Colorado, who had never seen Foxy Smith before. So when they saw Maverick wearing it when he came into town, they assumed he was Foxy Smith.

Those gathered at the hotel awaiting Foxy's arrival were:

Cole Younger
Jesse James
Frank James
Sam Bass
Jim Dalton
Billy the Kid
Black Bart
Ben Thompson
Robert Clay Allison
Belle Starr

At least, that's who they claimed to be.

Hoo ah! Hoo ah!

That's the sound of me, working on a splain gang.

Sorry about that, Chief......

Just about every one of those famous real-world outlaws (with the possible exception of Allison) has been portrayed on TV in the past. Inner Toob just featured Ben Thompson this past Tuesday with his appearances on 'Bat Masterson' and 'The Life And Legend Of Wyatt Earp'. So each of them has recastaways to splain away. Rather than plodding through each character to find reasons why they should be considered the real deal vs. all of those other portrayals with quantum leaping for one and an evil twin for another, 'tis better to splain away all of these outlaws in one lump sum.

So I propose using the Famous Impostor Syndrome, "FIS", to write them all off as counterfeit.

I think a mass outbreak of inmates from an asylum fits the bill nicely, all of them suffering from the delusion that they're all infamous outlaws of the Old West. And as I mentioned in the "As Seen On TV" spotlight on Allison, "Bubbly Springs" makes for just the right kind of name for an insane asylum.

Foxy Smith probably enticed them to break out of the asylum so that he could meet them at the local hotel. He probably figured that with such complete conviction that they were the actual outlaws, these nutjobs would be just as good in the situation as the originals. And he wouldn't have to worry too much about splitting the proceeds with them either - all Foxy would have to do was contact the asylum and tell them where they could find their escaped inmates. (They'd probably have all followed Foxy's suggestion to meet him at some other location to divide up the loot.)

Although they escaped at the end of the episode, a posse was hot on their trail. So it wouldn't have been too long before each of these "famous outlaws" were back in their padded cells at the Bubbly Springs Asylum.

And a "Full House" of recastaways was safely splained away....

Pictured l to r:
Billy the Kid, Black Bart, Frank James, Sam Bass, Jim Dalton, Cole Younger






From Wikipedia:
Born Robert Clay Allison , known as "Clay", September 2, 1840, the fourth of nine children, to Jeremiah Scotland Allison and Mariah R. Allison. His father, a Presbyterian minister, also worked in the cattle and sheep business and died when Clay was only five. Clay was said to have been restless from birth, and as he grew into manhood, he became feared for his wild mood swings and quick temperament.

After returning home from the war, he was involved in several confrontations before he left Tennessee for Texas. One report was that when a Union officer, a member of the 3rd Regiment Illinois Volunteer Cavalry, arrived on the family farm with intentions of seizing it, Clay retrieved a gun from the house and killed the officer. Following this, Allison, his brothers Monroe and John, sister Mary and her husband Lewis Coleman, moved across the Brazos River in Texas to settle.

Allison had a reputation as being a dangerous man around the Western Plains by the end of 1873.

From 1880 to 1883, Clay Allison ranched with his two brothers, John William and Jeremiah Monroe, 12 miles northeast of the town of Mobeetie, at the junction of the Washita River and Gageby Creek, in what was then Wheeler County, Texas, and present day Hemphill County, Texas. One day Clay Allison rode through Mobeetie drunk and naked.

On July 3, 1887, Allison was hauling a load of supplies when the load shifted and a sack of grain fell from the wagon. Trying to catch it, Allison fell from the wagon, and the wheel rolled over him. He broke his neck and quickly died. He was buried the next day at Pecos Cemetery in Pecos, Texas, and it is said that hundreds attended his funeral.

In a special ceremony held on August 28, 1975, the remains of Clay Allison were re-interred at Pecos Park, just west of the Pecos Museum.

His military grave marker is inscribed:

SEP 2 1840
JUL 3 1887

A second marker was added at the foot of the grave later reading: "He never killed a man that did not need killing".

Allison was 47 years old when he died, and yet he was portrayed as an old man in the "Full House" episode of 'Maverick'. As with Sam Bass, this is another example which supports my theory that this gathering of outlaws in Bubbly Springs, Colorado, were nothing more than escaped mental patients from some nearby asylum.

"Bubbly Springs" does have a ring to it for the name of an asylum.....


Thursday, August 19, 2010


The August edition of the TV Crossover Hall of Fame is running late because I didn't wat it to get lost in the middle of the 'Maverick' marathon of posts that ran during my two weeks of vacation. So now we can give our honoree the attention he deserves.....

With July and August, TV Western characters are inducted into the TVXOHOF, one who is an historical figure and the other found only in Toobworld.

In July, Cochise was added to this special tribe, and that took care of the historical character, with Michael Ansara's portrayal being the official representation. In memory of Robert Culp, the latest member of the Hall of Fame is Hoby Gilman, Texas Ranger.

Ranger Hoby Gilman had his own series, 'Trackdown'. But he was first introduced in the "Badge Of Honor" episode of 'Zane Grey Theater". In one of those 'Trackdown' episodes, Hoby crossed paths with Josh Randall, thus introducing the real world to Steve McQueen's bounty hunter. Randall would go on to have his own series, 'Wanted: Dead Or Alive'. A nominee for the TV Crossover Hall of Fame needs to have connections to three different TV showcases - and that includes commercials, cartoons, TV movies, etc. So Hoby Gilman has all three - his own series; his pilot launched from another series; and his show launching another series.

This would be enough for any TV character, but Hoby Gilman wasn't finished. He was mentioned on a fourth series, 'I Spy'. In one episode, Kelly Robinson was showing off his dexterity in twirling his gun - which prompted his partner Alexander Scott to chastise him with "Hoby, Hoby, Hoby...."

This would an in-joke on the part of the episode writer, everywhere but Toobworld Central. Here, it's a reference to the "historical" character of the Texas Ranger.

Both Kelly and Scott understood the significance of that reference and here's why: at some point unseen by the Trueniverse audience, Kelly must have told Scott about his great-grandfather*, the Texas Ranger named Hoby Gilman. And in keeping with Toobworld tradition, in which tele-genetics can be so strong that they can be passed down exactly through the generations, Hoby and Kelly looked exactly the same.

And with that, Hoby Gilman is more than qualified to join the Maverick brothers, Cheyenne Bodie, and Hec Ramsey (aka Paladin) and many other TV Western characters in the TV Crossover Hall of Fame.

Welcome aboard, Hoby, from Toby! BCnU

* Hoby was young enough that he could have been Kelly Robinson's grandfather.....




Kelly Thordsen
From Wikipedia:

After failing at a series of legitimate enterprises, [Sam] Bass turned to crime. He formed a gang and robbed the Union Pacific gold train from San Francisco. Bass and his men intercepted the train on September 18, 1877 at Big Spring, Nebraska, looting $60,000 - to this day the largest single robbery of the Union Pacific.

Bass and his gang staged a string of robberies, yet never netted over $500 at any one time. In 1878, they held up two stagecoaches and four trains within twenty-five miles of Dallas and became the object of a manhunt by Pinkerton Agents and by a special company of the Texas Rangers headed by Captain Junius Peak.

Bass was able to elude the Rangers until a member of his gang, Jim Murphy, turned informant. John B. Jones was informed of Bass's movements, and set up an ambush at Round Rock, Texas, where Bass planned to rob the Williamson County Bank.On 19 July 1878, Bass and his gang were scouting the area before the robbery. When they bought some tobacco at a store, they were noticed by Deputy Sheriff A. W. Grimes. When Grimes approached the men to request that they surrender their sidearms, he was shot and killed.

As he attempted to flee, Bass was shot by Ranger George Herold and then by Texas Ranger sergeant Richard Ware. Near Ware, were Soapy Smith and his cousin Edwin who witnessed Ware's shot. Soapy exclaimed, "I think you got him."

[Sam Bass] was found lying in a pasture by a group of railroad workers, who summoned the authorities. He was taken into custody and died the next day, his 27th birthday.
His age at the time of his death is as good a reason as any to consider the Sam Bass seen in the "Full House" episode of 'Maverick' to be a "Famous Person Impostor". One of my theories is that the whole bunch of outlaws who planned to rob the mint in Denver were escapees from an insane asylum, all of them thinking they were famous outlaws - even Billy the Kid, Cole Younger, and Belle Starr.


(Seen here with Jesse and Frank James - allegedly)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


In 1893, an unfortunate young scientist named Mark Radcliffe created a formula that allowed him to travel faster than the eye could see. Unfortunately, he finally took too much of the stuff, which caused him to live out the next fifty years (from his perspective) between the hours of 3 pm and 5 pm on the sunny afternoon of September 17. (This was all documented in the mini-series "The Infinite Worlds Of HG Wells".) It's a theory of relateeveety here at Toobworld Central that Mark Radcliffe left behind a sister, who was either married to a man named Nicholson or who would eventually marry him around the turn of the century. She would have a son whom she would name in memory of her brother; Mark Nicholson was probably born in 1905.

Mark Nicholson would grow up to become a writer, perhaps influenced by HG Wells, the man who chronicled the fate of his uncle. Mark wrote mostly crime and mystery stories, which brought him to the notice of the newly formed department of Special Operations Executive, described by Miss Hilda Pierce to be a Department of Dirty Deeds for the war effort. (We met Mark, and were re-introduced to Miss Pierce, in "The French Drop", an episode of 'Foyle's War' set in February of 1941.)

Here are pictures of Professor Mark Radcliffe and his nephew Mark Nicholson: This theory of relateeveety goes on to claim that Mark Nicholson had a grandchild who was also named after him, but it is unknown if they shared the same last name. This third Mark was seen in an episode of 'Extras', where he was an actor working on a movie starring Ross Kemp. Maggie had a crush on him.....
The reason for this theory of relateeveety? All three roles were played by Raymond Coulthard.....



Toobworld is full of inanimate objects that talk. Some of them are due to reincarnation, like the car in 'My Mother The Car', Milton the Toaster in those Pop-Tarts blipverts, and the Geisler shopping cart in the commercial for Geisler Supermarkets.

But there could be other reasons for other talking objects, including this talking sandwich:

In the TV reunion movie "I Still Dream Of Jeannie", the genie's twin sister (known as Jeannie II because their mother was an "efficiency expert") played a dirty trick on Jeannie I. She reminded the head of the genies that a genie on Earth cannot go more than 3 months without an earthly master. And since Colonel Nelson was off on a top-secret space mission and technically no longer "earthly", Jeannie had to find a new master. What happened since then?

I think Jeannie II eventually found herself in the same straits as her sister and she was forced to get a new master. But that doesn't mean she had to be happy about it.

Here's a pozz'bility: the master chosen by Jeannie II was some schmuck who worked public relations for the orange juice industry's advisory board. Perhaps Jeannie didn't choose him at all; maybe he gained control of her genie bottle and forced her to do his bidding.

Of course, he may not have trusted her; he probably figured he should test her abilities to serve him first. He decided to start off simple with his wish-list.

And so he commanded her - and I'm sure you saw this coming a mile away - "Make me a sandwich."

And now that schmuck is stuck living with his brother's family* where at least he's relatively safe from being eaten....... So long as that growing teen doesn't need to keep stoking that bottomless pit


* At least it should be his brother's family since that's how such sitcoms work. Besides, you're less likely to get eaten by family....




James Griffith

From Wikipedia:
John Wesley Hardin (May 26, 1853—August 19, 1895) was an outlaw and gunfighter of the American Old West. He was born in Bonham, Fannin County, Texas. When Hardin went to prison in 1878, he claimed to have killed 42 men. Hardin's criminal career resulted not only in the deaths of his victims but also in the deaths of his brother Joe and two cousins who were hanged by a lynch mob seeking revenge for a Hardin killing.

Hardin was released from prison on February 17, 1894 after serving nearly 16 years of his 25-year sentence and being behind bars for 17 years since his capture. He promptly returned to Gonzales, Texas, as a 41-year-old widower who had three children who did not even know what he looked like. Within six months of release, two significant events occurred in Hardin's life. First, on March 16, he was pardoned, and then on July 21 he passed the state's bar examination, obtaining his license to practice law.

On January 9, 1895, he married a 15-year-old girl named Carolyn "Callie" Lewis. However, the marriage did not work out, and it quickly ended, albeit never legally dissolved. Neither Hardin nor his wife ever disclosed why the marriage failed so abruptly. Ill feelings about his failed second marriage probably contributed to Hardin's desire to move west, specifically to El Paso.

El Paso lawman John Selman Jr., arrested Hardin's friend, the widow M'Rose (also spelled Mroz), for "brandishing a gun in public." Hardin confronted Selman, and the two men had a verbal dispute. On being told of the argument, John's 56-year-old father, John Selman Sr., a constable, approached Hardin on the afternoon of August 19, 1895, and the two men exchanged words. Later that night, Hardin went to the Acme Saloon, where he began playing dice. Shortly before midnight Selman Sr. walked in and saw Hardin with his back to him, and shot him in the back of the head, killing him instantly. As Hardin's body lay on the floor, Selman fired three more shots into him.

Once again, "Famous Impostor Syndrome" came into play as Bart Maverick impersonated Hardin to help his brother Bret out of a tight situation in Sundown, Texas. On the way out of town, they ran into Hardin who had heard that a Bret Maverick supposedly gunned down John Wesley Hardin and the gunman was eager to prove that lightning never struck twice in the same place.....

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Even though it ended up a campy mess and was never as good as its contemporary 'Star Trek', there's no denying that 'Lost In Space' entered the national nostalgia zeitgeist. Which is why Zonk-like references to the real world TV show keep showing up within TV shows that should have been sharing the same universe.

Here's a recent example:
At one point in a recent investigation, 'Warehouse 13' agent Pete Latimer waved around his arms and shouted "Warning! Warning! Danger, Will Robinson!"

This is a reference to one of the catch-phrases used by Robot in 'Lost In Space', but in Toobworld it had nothing to do with the real world TV series. Therefore it's not a Zonk. And 'Warehouse 13' hasn't been the only show to make reference to Robot's catch-phrase/warning.

Courtesy of the IMDb, here are a few examples:

"The Big Bang Theory: The Barbarian Sublimation (#2.3)" (2008)
- When awakened, Sheldon calls out, "Danger. Danger."

"Wizards of Waverly Place: Wizards & Vampires vs. Zombies (#2.29)" (2009)
- A Character says 'Danger, Danger Will Robinson'

"How I Met Your Mother: The Rough Patch (#5.7)" (2009)
- Actor in robot costume says lines from the robot in the show ("Danger, Will Robinson!")

"Farscape: Nerve (#1.19)" (2000)
- Crichton whispers "Danger, Will Robinson," the famous Robot quote, before passing out

"CSI: Crime Scene Investigation: Fahrenheit 932 (#1.12)" (2001)
- Sarah Sidle says,"Danger, Will Robinson."

"Gilmore Girls: The Ins and Outs of Inns (#2.8)" (2001)
- Uses the quote "Danger Will Robinson! Danger!"

"Gilmore Girls: A Family Matter (#4.12)" (2004)
- While warning Rory about Jess staying in town for the weekend, Lorelai quotes the show's famous "Danger, Will Robinson" line.

And just like with 'Warehouse 13', none of those references are Zonks.

I've got some splainin to do.....

On October 16th 1997, the Jupiter Two spacecraft blasted off on its top secret mission with the Robinson Family, Major Don West, and Dr. Zachary Smith on board. That's what happened in Toobworld; in the real world we saw the events transpire back in the mid-1960s. Five and a half months later, April, 1998, the movie "Lost In Space" was released in theaters. That happened both in the real world as well as in Toobworld.

This might have meant that the Toobworld version of the movie was rushed into production after the launch and the loss of contact with the Jupiter Two (due to the unexpected presence of Dr. Smith on board.) However, in 1997, C.C. spoke about the TV show being turned into a movie on an episode of 'The Nanny'.

She was right about the movie being made; being in show business, C.C. would have seen the story in the trades. But she was wrong about the source material for the movie. The movie was based on the "real-life" events of the Jupiter Two's launch. Since C.C. mentioned it in February of 1997, the movie was in production before the launch and featured intimate details like what Robot would say to the youngest member of the Robinson family. Therefore, the Toobworld version of the movie could have been a documentary. (The televersion of the "Lost In Space" movie doesn't have to be exactly the same as the one we were able to see.) Only after the space agency lost contact with the Jupiter Two would the script have become more speculative about their fates.

All of those shows listed above were first broadcast after 1998, so they would be references to the theatrically released movie. And even though they weren't using the expression "Danger, Will Robinson!", this same splainin works for the following shows:

"The X-Files: Jump the Shark (#9.15)" (2002)
- Referenced in dialogue.

"Star Trek: The Next Generation: Conundrum (#5.14)" (1992)
- When Commander Will Riker is playing chess, one of his pieces is the Robinson's Robot.

That one was WAY after the events of the Jupiter Two launch, so definitely no Zonk there. His chess piece was merely a tribute to one of the legends in early space travel.

"The West Wing: 20 Hours in America (#4.1)" (2002)
- Josh says "Danger, Will Robinson."

That reference fits all the requirements to be Zonk-free, but ultimately it didn't matter. 'The West Wing' takes place in an alternate TV dimension in which the President was Jed Bartlet and not Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.

References to 'Lost In Space' made in sketch comedy shows, like episodes of 'Saturday Night Live' and Gwyneth Paltrow, also don't count. They belong in Skitlandia, another alternate TV dimension. Likewise, the same rule applies to any mentions in animated series; those take place in the Tooniverse. So we can ignore the mentions of 'Lost in Space' that can be found in 'The Magic School Bus', 'The Critic', 'Freakazoid!', 'The Simpsons', 'Tripping The Rift', 'Futurama', and 'Family Guy'.

Episode titles have no bearing on what happens in Toobworld. So "Lost In Spacesuits" ('Laverne & Shirley'), "Lost And Found In Space" ('St. Elsewhere'), and "Lost In Space: Parts 1 & 2" ('Family Matters) are irrelevant.

Reality shows - dreadful, hateful things! - have no true place in Toobworld unless they are integrated into a scripted series - like 'Big Brother' on 'Yes, Dear', or 'American Gladiators' on 'Family Matters'. And even then, those series don't necessarily play out on Toobworld TV screens as they might on the TV screens here in the "Trueniverse".

So we don't have to pay any attention to the following references to 'Lost In Space':

"Dancing with the Stars: Episode #6.4" (2007)
- When Daryl Somers reminds Tim Campbell that in the previous episode the judges wanted him to show some more danger, Tim says "Danger, Will Robinson" in a voice like the robot from this title.

"Just In with Laura Ingraham: Episode dated 18 June 2008" (2008)
- This TV show is referenced by name.

"Hole in the Wall: Actors vs Reality Stars (#1.5)" (2008/II)
- During their opening interview, one of the Reality Stars team members mentions that he feels like he's come off the Lost In Space set.

Let's go back to what C.C. said back in 1997 about the "Lost In The Space" movie - she mistakenly thought it was based on the TV show we watched back in the 1960s. We can't allow that reference to be about the Space Family Robinson or it would become a Zonk. After all, they didn't become a national headline until October of 1997. So apparently there was another TV series with the title 'Lost In Space' but it had a totally different plot.

And with this splainin, we can consider the following references to be de-Zonked:

"Nurses: Catch a Fallen Star (#1.19)" (1992)
- Julie talks about watching "Lost in Space" when she was young.
(Exactly how much talking did she do about it, I wonder?)

"The Nanny: The Strike (#2.13)" (1994)
- Fran mentions the character, Will Robinson
("Don't Panic!" as the 'Hitch-Hiker's Guide To The Galaxy' proclaims on its cover in big friendly letters. Many TV shows share character names. Just a coincidence; Toobworld is a breeding ground for coincidences.)

"Married with Children: The Undergraduate (#9.28)" (1995)
- Kelly: "But as the Chinese philosopher Unconscious once said: It's better to have loved and lost than to have never seen 'Lost in Space' at all."
(Thank the jacklord she's such a blonde!)

There is one TV show set in the main Toobworld of Earth Prime-Time that might give televisiologists an Exedrin Moment - 'Mystery Science Theater 3000'.

Here's a list of their 'Lost In Space' Zonks that might look on the surface to be quite specific to the real world TV series:

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: Catalina Caper (#3.4)" (1990)
- Crow: (as Dr. Smith) Oh, the pain, the pain.

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: Wild Rebels (#3.7)" (1990)
- Crow (as Dr. Smith): "Oh, the pain! The shame!"

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: First Spaceship on Venus (#3.11)" (1990)
- Crow (as Dr. Smith): "Oh, the pain! The pain!"

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: Manhunt in Space (#5.13)" (1992)
- Joel: "Yes, it's Dr. Smith and Mr. Mooney as you've never seen them before!"

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Mole People (#9.3)" (1997)
- It's a pride of Dr. Smiths!

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: Invasion of the Neptune Men (#9.19)" (1997)
- Crow: I just know Dr. Smith is going to be in this.

We could argue that the phrase "The pain! The pain!" could have come from any number of other sources, not necessarily from 'Lost In Space'. It could have even come from a Toobworld blipvert shilling for aspirin or some other kind of pain reliever. As for the name of Dr. Smith, that's pretty generic; it could refer to some "real" person in the Toobworld citizenry. (The same holds true for Mr. Mooney.)

It's the following, more specific, references that need attention:

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: Rocketship X-M (#3.1)" (1990)
- Tom Servo quotes the Robot of this show while his voice box was changing.
(I would need more information... information... information before I could come up with a splainin.)

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Creeping Terror (#7.6)" (1994)
- Servo: Danger, Will Robinson
(As with the earlier mention of that name, it could be from some other source. That it should be the exact same phrase which those other TV shows quoted is just one more amazing coincidence.)

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (#4.21)" (1991)
- "These are like cheap versions of the 'Lost in Space' sets."
(I think this qualifies as a reference to that earlier show with the same name, but of a different subject matter.)

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: Being from Another Planet (#5.5)" (1992)
- in Bill Mumy sketch
(This could be tricky. I'll need more intel on the topic.)

"Mystery Science Theater 3000: Blood Waters of Dr. Z (#11.5)" (1999)
- Dr. Z says, "The pain!", after which Tom adds, "Jonathan Harris would sue."
(Perhaps in Toobworld, Jonathan Harris was the celebrity spokesman for that fictional pain reliever, an Earth Prime-Time counterpart to Skitlandia's Triopenin.)

Hopefully I've covered all the bases for any general Zonks regarding 'Lost In Space'. Anything that turns out to be more specific in the future just shows that the writer didn't trust the audience to get the joke in the first place.


It can't be used in any way but its original purpose within Toobworld "reality", but here's Boris Karloff as 'Colonel March Of Scotland Yard' with guest actor Christopher Lee as suspect Jean-Pierre in the episode "At Night All Cats Are Grey". (I love that title!) But if it had been a horror movie subset of the "Cineverse"? Spine-tingling!
(Sorry about the quality of the transfer.....)



'Law & Order' - "Snatched"
inside the Galactica Bar
In "Snatched", an episode of 'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit', Detective Stabler and a civilian named Gino Parnell walked into a bar called the Galactica Bar to talk to a suspect in the kidnapping of Gino's daughter.

I think it could be a case of long-canceled TV characters hiding in plain sight. I think one of the aliens who arrived on Earth Prime-Time in that ragtag 'Battlestar Galactica' fleet back in 1980 may have decided to hide his true identity behind being the owner of a NYC bar. And perhaps he (or she) deduced that naming that bar after the ship that brought him to the planet Earth was way too obvious to be noticed.

By the way, the original series is in Earth Prime-Time; the remake, considered by many to be the superior version, must be relegated to an alternate TV dimension. I toyed with the idea that history merely repeated itself since the events of that series took place at the dawn of Mankind. However, that never would explain all of the Zonks when characters - like Sheldon on 'The Big Bang Theory' - quote from the show and even discuss particulars of the episodes.

Therefore, the second series of 'Battlestar Galactica', as good as it was, must be considered fictional, created by UNIT in cooperation with the Galactican refugee heirarchy within the context of its mention in Earth Prime-Time. (It could still have happened in an alternate dimension, and I would suggest 'The West Wing' TV dimension.)
This would help to cover-up stories about the real Galactica and also splain why so many TV characters love to use the word "Frak".




'The Life And Legend of Wyatt Earp'

Denver Pyle

'Bat Masterson'

Robert Swan

From Wikipedia:
Ben Thompson was a gunman, gambler, and sometime lawman of the Old West. He was one of the most spectacular gunmen of the Old West, and his skill with a pistol is considered to be among the finest there was. Many of his most famous contemporaries — including Wyatt Earp, Buffalo Bill Cody, Doc Holliday, John Wesley Hardin and James Butler "Wild Bill" Hickock — knew Ben personally, some considering him a trusted friend, others a lethal enemy.
Ben Thompson had a colorful career as a private in the Confederate Army during the American Civil War, and subsequently fought in Mexico before being imprisoned for murder. After his release from prison, Ben made his name as a gunman and a gambler before being offered the job as Marshal in Austin during which time he slashed the crime rate.

I've only had the chance to see "Wyatt Earp Becomes A Mashall" of the seven episodes in which Denver Pyle played the outlaw Ben Thompson from 1955 - 1958 on 'The Life And Legend Of Wyatt Earp'. So I don't really know if any sort of reformation is seen for the character. (Eventually Ben did become a lawman himself.)

The same can't be said for Billy in the context of this series. In real life, Billy Thompson accidentally shot Sheriff Whitney, (according to good ol' trusty Wikipedia), but in this introductory episode for the Thompson boys (and for Wyatt as well, pretty much), Billy Thompson guns down Sheriff Whitney deliberately. (Hal Baylor played Billy Thompson in this series.)

But with the 'Bat Masterson' episode "A Noose Fits Anybody", an actual event in History is played out, even if it is fictionalized. And Billy does seem capable of redemption for himself. (This was covered in greater detail in the "As Seen On TV" showcase during my vacation with
the entry on Bill Thompson.)

But there is an easy splainin for the difference in the appearances of the Thompson boys between both series. In real world history, everything ascribed to Billy or Ben Thompson happened to only two men. But in Toobworld, there were two sets of brothers who shared the same, somewhat common names. And between them, they could divvy up the facts and legends about the Thompsons.
One theory of relateeveety about the Thompsons who appeared in 'The Life And Legend Of Wyatt Earp': it's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, that this Thompson family originated in North Carolina. And they could have been off-shoots of the Darling Clan from the Mayberry environs. This is based on the similarity in appearance between Ben Thompson and Briscoe Darling, who would be born in the 20th Century.

There was an eighth appearance by Ben Thompson in 'The Life And Legend Of Wyatt Earp', and he was now played by Walter Coy. And he looked nothing like either of those first two incarnations of the gunman; in fact, he was something of a dandy, closer in temperament to Nobby Ned Wingate of 'Maverick'. This Ben Thompson could have been a time traveler or a quantum leaper, but I'll invoke Occam's Razor and say that he was yet a third man by the name of Ben Thompson. And to him we could carve out another slice of the legend since it doesn't seem to be addressed with either Pyle's or Swan's interpretation:

born in Knottingley, West Yorkshire, England on November 2, 1843

With this Ben Thompson, you can believe he came from Jolly Olde.....

How about that? Two for Tuesday and you get an extra one free!


Monday, August 16, 2010


Toobworld Central has always maintained that exact strands of genetic material can be reproduced over and over again throughout centuries. We've seen it happen with the ancestors of the Simon brothers on 'Simon and Simon'. But could an exact copy be reproduced nearly 5 billion years into the future?

Back in 1895, HG Wells knew a very obese man named Albert Pyecraft; they were members of the same club in London. Pyecraft had been a mathematical prodigy, providing three solutions to a nearly unsolvable theorem when he was fifteen. But his exceeding obesity made him something of a social pariah and he never thought he'd find love in that state. However, after trying a mysterious potion that was supposed to free him of his excess weight, he found that it made him float in the air instead - truly weightless!

In the end, he gained the Newton Chair of Mathematics at Oxford (in Toobworld, only of course) and found love in a girl named Violet.
We're told that eventually the effects of the potion wore off exponentially and he was able to lead a normal life once again. (The TV version of the story differs quite a bit, save for the basics, from the original story.)
Now could it be that if Albert and Violet had children, eventually one of them would be the Duke of Manhattan on the planet New Earth in the year 5,000,000,023? They certainly look alike:
(Outside of the Toobworld reality, this was because they were played by the same actor - Michael Fitzgerald.)

Here's another thought - what if Albert and Violet consumed their passions before the effects of the potion wore off? Could Albert have passed on his "power" to his progeny? By dancing with Violet after proposing to her, he revealed his predilection as they both floated in the air. Not knowing how long the condition might last, perhaps they decided to take advantage of the situation without the "sanctity of marriage" - so that at least for the time being, Albert could be on top......


I wonder if there are any TV characters in the early days of the 20th Century who were born with the power to fly? Or maybe it had to wait a few generations before it finally manifested itself.....?

'The Infinite Worlds Of HG Wells'

'Doctor Who' - "New Earth"