Saturday, February 26, 2011


I'm not really crazy about the idea, but based on what I've written in the past, the "crossover" between 'Hot In Cleveland' and 'All My Children' which played out over the last two weeks actually does work (in a convoluted way). And begrudingly, it may be hard to top when it comes to the 2011 Toobits Awards winner for Best Crossover of the Year......





It's time once again for another nature video.....



The more you know......

Porky Pig and the Constitution

Looony Toons Constitution

Bugs and Daffy on the Constitution

Thanks to Mark Evanier for pointing these out....




"Ziegfeld: The Man And His Women"

Valerie Perrine

Lillian Lorraine (Ealallean De Jacques) was born on Friday, January 01, 1892 in San Francisco and was a famous dancer. She died on Sunday, April 17, 1955, in New York City, New York.

From the "Find A Grave" website:

We do know that in 1909 Ziegfeld began a prolonged affair with the gorgeous but volatile showgirl Lilliane Lorraine. Anna Held took the "sophisticated" continental approach, looking the other way when her husband indulged in discreet infidelities with chorus girls. But Ziegfeld made this affair a matter of public record, taking Lorraine to top restaurants, and even installing her in the Ansonia, just floors away from Anna. He also featured Lorraine in Follies production numbers which made the most of her beauty, distracting audiences from the young girl's lack of singing or acting talent. Soon, all of New York society was talking about the Ziegfeld-Lorraine relationship.

At one point, Lorraine married to excite Ziegfeld's jealousy, then sat by when her husband publicly trounced Ziegfeld in a restaurant. Incredibly, Ziegfeld's pursuit of Lorraine continued. Even to the most open-minded, such public scandal was not acceptable. After several attempts at reconciliation, Anna Held filed for divorce in 1912, naming Lorraine as one of several co-respondents. Since Held and Ziegfeld had never legally wed, this filing was little more than an attempt on Held's part to preserve her sense of public dignity.

From this point on, Anna Held dismissed suggestions of a "remarriage" with Ziegfeld, and was quoted as saying "One does not re-light a dead cigarette." However, many believe she still nursed private hopes of a reconciliation when she attended a 1913 New Year's Eve gala at the Astor Hotel. Her hopes rose when an inebriated Lillian Lorraine argued with Ziegfeld and stormed out, but then Anna watched in helpless fury as Ziegfeld spent the rest of the evening courting actress Billie Burke.

A big thanks goes out to J.r. Klink, who first pointed out this video....



One last tribute to Nicholas Courtney, who played Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart on 'Doctor Who' (and one last time on the spin-off, 'The Sarah Jane Adventures') for so many years.....

Good night and may God bless.


Friday, February 25, 2011


Because of my interest in, and admiration for, the amazing world of The Wold Newton Universe, I watched the only TV version of 'King Solomon's Mines' based on the book by H. Rider Haggard. The 2004 movie (pseudo mini-series) starred Patrick Swayze as the explorer and adventurer Allan Quatermain, with Allison Doody, Roy Marsden, and John Standing.

Right off the bat, you can see in that cast list two major deviations from the original source material - Quatermain is an American in this version, not an Englishman; and - Gasp! Horror! - there's a woman involved.

In the original 1885 novel, Quatermain is hired to lead Sir Henry Curtis and his friend Captain Good into unexplored territory in hopes of finding Sir Henry's brother, George Neville. Neville had gone in search of the fabled mines of King Solomon but was now feared lost or dead. Along the way, they helped the African Umbopa overthrow Twala, the cruel ruler of the Kukuani tribesmen. (It turns out that Umbopa is really the true king Ignosi, who had been banished to die in the desert as an infant with his mother.)
Most of the TV movie adheres to the basic plot, but a lot of it seems more influenced by the 1950's film which starred Stewart Granger, Deborah Kerr, and Richard Carlson. (There are also Czarist agents added to the mix to give the story more villains.) And the major plot deviation there is the introduction of a beautiful woman into the safari.
With the film, she's in search of her husband, who conveniently turns up dead by the end so that there's no longer an impediment to the growing love between her and Quatermain. In the TV movie, she's the daughter of the missing man and so is free to eventually (and inevitably, of course, of course) marry Quatermain. (As in the original novel, Quatermain has a son, although I think the sub-plot about the custody battle with his in-laws was a creation for the televersion.)

So Elizabeth Maitland becomes the driving force of the search, not Sir Henry Curtis. But Sir Henry does appear in this version of the story - as a grizzled Australian, a fellow explorer who is frienemies with Quatermain and joins the search party.
The two bearers from the novel, Khiva and Ventvogel, also survived the adaptation, although Ventvogel's moment in which he sniffs out the water of the oasis in the desert is usurped by Captain Good. (Just to give Marsden a little something extra to do, I imagine. After all, he is one of the stars.)
The overthrow of Twala plays out more along the lines of the 1950 movie with a personal challenge rather than an all-out war as originally depicted. But the film had Umbopa/Ignosi duel with Twala himself, while the TV Quatermain serves as his champion against some brute chosen by Twala. (And from a production point of view, that makes sense - why have your star play the hero as a bystander when you can have him be Action Man?)
In the original novel, there were only two female characters, both members of the Kukuani - Gagool, a withered old hag of a witch doctor, and Foulata, a beautiful black woman who falls in love with Captain Good (who is a naval captain in this version; the book has him as an army captain). Gagool traps the explorers in the mines, but then meets her death thanks to Foulata who also dies from Gagool's thrust of a knife.
Both appear in the TV version, but I couldn't tell you who - or where - Foulata was. There was another witch woman early on, but I believe that was Mooma Tuusee.
As for Gagool, there is a major revision to her character, which I think was for the better. She is younger, probably quite pretty under all of that whiteface, and she shows sympathy to Professor Sam Maitland while he was in captivity. In that, she probably takes the role of Foulata from the book, with Captain Good replaced by Maitland. She leads Quatermain and Elizabeth Maitland to the site of the mines, but does not betray them. (It was more in keeping with the influence of "Indiana Jones" - which itself was influenced by the original book - that they got trapped by triggering ancient built-in traps. And then there's McNabb, an old partner now adversary of Quatermain's, to take Gagool's role of treachery in the mines.)

So the TV version really can't be reconciled with the Wold Newton Universe, which quite rightly takes the literary form of the source material to be the accepted version for inclusion. And that's as it should be. The Toobworld Dynamic and the WNU have plenty of other opportunities to overlap.

Standing on its own, and firmly in the TV Universe, "King Solomon's Mines" does serve the Great Link in one area, besides bringing one of the greatest pulp action heroes into Toobworld - with theories of "relateeveety".

First up would again be Allan Quatermaine. Now that Earth Prime-Time has transformed him into an American, with at least one son to carry on the family name, I'm going to claim that they are the founders of the family tree for the Quartermaine family in Port Charles, New York, as seen in the TV shows 'General Hospital' and 'Port Charles'. (And yes, the family name was altered along the way.)
And then there is Sam Maitland and his daughter Elizabeth. The Maitland family name is deeply imbedded in the Tele-Folks Directory of Earth Prime-Time, and we have several TV shows just from the UK alone which could be fitted for a family connection to the Maitlands of "King Solomon's Mines" - 'Primeval', 'Coupling', 'The Bill', 'Collision', even one who appeared on 'Doctor Who'. There's the Maitland family in Summer Bay, New South Wales, Austrailia, and Maitlands in 'Family' and 'The Immortal' of the United States.
They wouldn't be directly descended from Elizabeth, as any children she might have would bear the name of Quatermain. But Sam Maitland might have had other children, and he could have had a brother or two. In the past I've speculated that Dr. Maitland (seen above), from 'The Wild, Wild West' episode "The Night Of The Sedgwick Curse", was the grandfather to Arthur Maitland who was also obsessed with the aging process (as seen in 'The Immortal'). So perhaps he and Sam Maitland could have been brothers. (I'd like to think Abby Maitland of 'Primeval' is somehow related, to carry on the family traditions of science and exploration....)
One last point - there's also the second in a trilogy of TV movies about "The Librarian": "Return To King Solomon's Mines". More than one hundred years after the events fictionalized in Haggard's novel (as far as Earth Prime-Time is concerned, in order to diffuse any mentions of the book), Flynn Carsen undertook his own quest to reach the mines And differences between the two adventures could be easily disabled.

And so that's my take on the place H. Rider Haggard's novel "King Solomon's Mines" holds in the TV Universe.....




"Child Star: The Shirley Temple Story"

Hinton Battle

From Wikipedia:
Bill “Bojangles” Robinson (May 25, 1878 - November 25, 1949) was an American tap dancer and actor of stage and film. Audiences enjoyed his understated style, which eschewed the frenetic manner of the jitterbug in favor of cool and reserve; rarely did he use his upper body, relying instead on busy, inventive feet and an expressive face.

A figure in both the Black and White entertainment worlds of his era, he is best known today for his dancing with Shirley Temple in a series of films during the 1930s.


Thursday, February 24, 2011


I was online with Facebook when suddenly all my 'Doctor Who' connections started posting the sad news that Nicholas Courtney, forever to be remembered as the Brigadier on the series, had passed away......

From CBS News:
The BBC reports Nicholas Courtney, best known for playing Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart - known more commonly as "The Brigadier" - on "Doctor Who" has died in London at the age of 81.

Courtney played opposite five actors who played Doctor Who on television,
reports the BBC. But he made his first appearance in 1965 on the show as a different character, Bret Vyon.

When the actor returned to the show three years later he made his first appearance as the Brigadier. He made his final appearance on "Doctor Who" in 1989, according to He reprised the role on the show "The Sarah Jane Adventures" in 2008.

In June of 2007, Toobworld Central honored Courtney's portrayal of the Brigadier with the Birthday Honors List entry into the TV Crossover Hall of Fame.


At the time, his membership needed that "What I say, goes" push via the Birthday Honors. However, a year later he appeared on 'The Sarah Jane Adventures' in the role and made his qualifications legitimate. (There was also an appearance on the Harry Hill variety show back in 2000, which gave him a presence in the Skitlandia TV dimension.)

I still hold to the "By Any Other Name" theories that Courtney's character in 'The Avengers' was also Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart, as was one of the young street urchins in the 'Doctor Who' episodes "The Empty Child" & "The Doctor Dances". With that theory, the Brigadier has met every incarnation of the Doctor save David Tennant's, Paul McGann's and Matt Smith's. (I'm told that there's at least one audio-play in which Courtney and McGann work together, but that belongs in a different universe based on Mankind's creative spark.) On a technicality, he did meet the First Incarnation of the Doctor, but played by Richard Hurndall in "The Five Doctors", not the original played by William Hartnell.

Here's a YouTube video celebrating both the actor and his most famous character:

I salute you as well, Sir. Good night and may God bless.



While I was working on the Sarah Palin ASOTV post, I got a delivery from Amazon!

'SAPPHIRE AND STEEL' - the complete series
I don't remember if this was a Gold Box Deal of the Day or not, but it's a boxed set of 6 DVDs for only fourteen bucks! I've always been intrigued by the idea of this series (starring Joanna Lumley and David McCallum - as aliens, I think?), but have never seen an episode. Definitely moving up the list of lunch break DVDs for work!

'DARK SKIES' - the complete series
The alien conspiracy series that shows how the Hive infiltrated American society since the Roswell crash in 1947. This is going to be rich in screen captchas for the "As Seen On TV" showcase at Inner Toob!

'WHISPERING SMITH' - the complete series
The Audie Murphy TV Western - another show I always wanted to check out and it was a very low price so it was worth the gamble.

'WANTED: DEAD OR ALIVE' - the complete series
Another TV western, the one that made Steve McQueen a star.

I may just have to put my Netflix account on hold, with all the stuff I now have to watch in the Toobworld Central library!




'Saturday Night Live'

Tina Fey

From the New York Daily News:
Sarah Palin took a shot at First Lady Michelle Obama about breastfeeding Thursday - and wound up looking like a boob.

Riffing on Obama's recent recommendation that moms breastfeed their babies, the self-styled Mama Grizzly cracked, "It's no wonder Michelle Obama is telling everybody you need to breast feed your babies ... the price of milk is so high!"

Problem is that babies aren't supposed to drink cow milk.

Most pediatricians recommend formula - or breast milk - for infants.

What a stupid bitch........

Read more:

And the hypocrital virago used to advocate breast-feeding! Check out what Ed Brayton posted at his science blog:

The termagant makes me sick......


Wednesday, February 23, 2011


According to Michael Ausiello of TV/Line, the Cul de Sac Crew from 'Cougar Town' will be invoking a major TV trope by visiting Hawaii... where they will run into Ted Buckland, the sad sack lawyer from Sacred Heart Hospital in 'Scrubs'.

Both 'Scrubs' and 'Cougar Town' have Bill Lawrence as the creative mastermind, and several actors from 'Scrubs' have already appeared in 'Cougar Town' - but not as their original characters. Of course the most prominent is Lawrence's wife Christa Miller, who's a regular on 'Cougar Town'. (Off topic - she's a fictional member of the family with her Kate O'Brien on 'The Drew Carey Show'.)

'Cougar Town' also frequents the same coffee addicts' hangout as did the staff at Sacred Heart. But they also referred to the TV show 'Scrubs' at one point. So meeting Ted Buckland should be..... veddy interestingk.

It's a smart move for this to happen in Hawaii, away from their familiar turf. That way the audience still won't know exactly where 'Scrubs' took place. (But it had to be near a SeaWorld, that's all I know.....)

According to Ausiello, this crossover will happen during May Sweeps. The Cul de Sac Crew will fly out to the fiftieth state to help Travis during some sort of crisis. I'm betting either his girl friend dumps him, or even better to justify bringing everybody out there - she dies!

Sorry, Kirsten - nothing personal, strictly business.

Here's one thing I will expect to happen during the episode: Bobby Cobb will hit me with a Zonk by mentioning 'Hawaii Five-O' as a TV show. How could he resist? (Or at least 'Magnum P.I.' or 'Lost'......)



Tuesday morning at the 'Today' show, Meredith Viera found Jesus.....

Whoever the guy was, he didn't even time it right so that he could be seen on camera. Loser.



From "Out Of The Darkness", a TV movie about the hunt for serial killer Son of Sam, here's the scene in "the box" between NYPD detective Ed Zigo and David Berkowitz........



The cop who arrested Son of Sam has passed away......


"Out Of The Darkness"

Martin Sheen

From The New York Post
Detective Ed Zigo -- the NYPD legend who cracked the "Son of Sam" case and slapped the handcuffs on serial killer David Berkowitz -- has died, The Post has learned. He was 84.

Zigo solved the confounding 1977 case by checking out a parking ticket issued to Berkowitz at the scene of his last murder.

"My father's deductive reasoning was: 'What is a Jewish guy from Yonkers doing parked in an Italian neighborhood at two in the morning?' " recalled Ed Zigo III, whose dad died of cancer Saturday at his Lynbrook, LI, home.

Read more


Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Skitlandia, that alternate TV dimension consisting of comedy sketches, has its own alternate TV dimensions, just like the main Toobworld does. It has to when something like this happens in a comedy sketch!
With President Washington killed in 2011, the timeline of Skitlandia would have changed - creating a new reality. In the new timeline, America would have become a colony of the British Empire again.
This probably happened after the fledgling country was left in confusion and turmoil by the missing "Father Of Our Country". England took advantage of the situation and moved back in to wrest control over the colonies again.
That the military officer (Was he wearing an Iron Cross?) was able to recognize the fact that the country had been altered by the murder of George Washington means that he and the Congressional members implicated in the death - Senator Rand Paul, Representative Nancy Pelosi, and Speaker of the House John Boehner - were unaffected by the timeline shift. They remembered the world as it once was. This was probably due to their proximity to the time maching built by the Pentagon, in much the same way that Captain Kirk and his landing party were unaffected by the drastic change to the timeline of the universe created by Doctor McCoy when he passed through the gateway of the Guardian of Forever. A lot o' thunkin' goin' on, just for a five minute sketch on 'Saturday Night Live'. O'Bsessed with the Toobworld Dynamic? Who, me?

Happy Washington's Birthday? BCnU!


'Saturday Night Live'

Russell Brand
"Swing Out, Sweet Land"

Lorne Greene


I'm sending this out in memory of a man I never got the chance to meet - my grandfather Thomas George O'Brien, the first to bear that name in our family. (And I'm the last, at Number Three. Having that many by the same name is probably why they started calling me by my initials - T-OB - since before I was even born.) Grandpa was born on Washington's birthday in 1900, which is why he was given "George" as his middle name.

So on the occasion of his eleventy-first birthday, I'm doffing my tri-corner hat to Thomas George O'Brien the First with this "As Seen On TV" post.......


Monday, February 21, 2011


On this date in 1848, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels published "The Communist Manifesto".



John Simm

From Wikipedia:
Friedrich Engels (November 28, 1820 – August 5, 1895) was a German entrepreneur, social scientist, author, political theorist, philosopher, and father of communist theory, alongside Karl Marx. In 1845 he published "The Condition of the Working Class in England", based on personal observations and research. In 1848 he produced with Marx "The Communist Manifesto" and later he supported Marx financially to do research and write "Das Kapital". After Marx' death Engels edited the second and third volumes.

Engels wrote after Marx's death,

"I cannot deny that both before and during my forty years' collaboration with Marx I had a certain independent share in laying the foundations of the theory, but the greater part of its leading basic principles belong to Marx....Marx was a genius; we others were at best talented. Without him the theory would not be by far what it is today. It therefore rightly bears his name."

Despite Engels's modesty in these quotations, in fact he made major contributions to the Manifesto, starting with the suggestion to abandon "the form of a catechism and entitle it the Communist Manifesto."

Moreover, Engels joined Marx in Brussels for the writing of the Manifesto. There is no evidence of what his contributions to the final writing were, but the Manifesto bears the stamp of Marx's more rhetorical writing style. Nevertheless, it seems clear that Engels's contributions justify his name's appearance on the title page after Marx's.



I've had the chance to look at most of the Super Bowl commercials and I wasn't wowed by many of them. I've written about a few of the better blipverts, but now I just want to call it a day with this last focus on the one that I liked the best:

"One Epic Ride" by Kia.

This truly is epic, with "chapters" in the story of the car which can be linked (mostly theoretically) to a variety of TV shows. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if "One Epic Ride" ended up as the best blipvert at the 2011 Toobits Awards next January.

As Locke would say on 'Lost', we're gonna have to watch that again! So whenever you're ready.....

And now here are my suggestions for the theoretical links to each "chapter", using the various Inner Toob blog keywords........

This young couple must have been the actual owners of the Kia, or at least he was. Because of a later scene, the car-jacking probably took place in Los Angeles. And he looks to be a trendy young up-and-comer in business. And this being L.A., it's very likely he's in the business side of show business. Like an agent.


Theoretical link: 'ENTOURAGE'

I'm not saying he has to work at the Miller Gold Agency (There are so many agencies out there!), but it's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble.

To be able to procure an L.A. police uniform and motorcycle for this job would take a criminal with connections. I'm thinking this is the new wheel man for an established gang of thieves.

Theoretical link: 'SMITH'
At least this guy got his comeuppance. Unlike Michael Westin, he probably died from a fall into the ocean like that.

If this is supposed to be set in America, then it must be the Pacific Coast Highway on which the getaway driver is speeding along. (This is why I figured L.A. is where it all begins.)

Theoretical link: 'CHiPs'

In another ten minutes, the successors to Jon and Ponch would have been on his tail. After all, it's more than likely he had to kill an L.A. motorcycle cop for the uniform and the bike. And they'd be hot for revenge/justice. (Whichever came first.)

However, they're not going to get the chance to catch up.....

The guy flying the helicopter could be the evil brother of Ranjit Singh, the favorite NY cabbie for Ted, Barney, Robin, Lily and Marshall.

Theoretical link: 'HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER'
You'll notice I said "evil brother", not "evil twin". I don't think they look that much alike to be twins.....

This guy on the boat could be one of the last big operatives for the evil organization known as "The Ring".
Theoretical link: 'CHUCK'

The demi-gods have the power to change their appearance in Toobworld. (Good examples: Zeus, Ares, Aphrodite, Hercules) So it's no Zonk that Poseidon doesn't look as he once did. And that was thousands of years ago in the Time of Legends.

Theoretical link: 'XENA, WARRIOR PRINCESS'
Thousands of years.... No wonder he's aged!

James Cameron has said there are another thirteen moons circling the gas giant Polyphemus, along with Pandora. And he claims to have stories for all of them. But that doesn't mean they have to be all saved for the big screen. Some of them could be developed for television as well, without harming the movie franchise.
See those two little dots in the upper left of the picture? Those are two more of the moons. Either one of those could be the planet seen in the blipvert.

Theoretical link: "AVATAR"

I don't know of any species of TV alien this could be, or if anything similar ever showed up on TV before. Any suggestions? But I'd like to think it's home planet was a member of the League of Non-Aligned worlds; its species would just be one that was never encountered by the TV audiences.
Theoretical link: 'BABYLON 5'

(see the picture for "Big Screen TV")
Wormholes can be found throughout the galaxy, but most of them only serve as a conduit from one location to another.
Theoretical link: 'DEEP SPACE NINE'

This one looked to be temporal as well, which leads to...

WHO'S ON TVNow for my favorite of the connections! The reason why that particular wormhole was temporal in nature is because it was created by a time-traveling ship, much like the wake created by a speedboat.

And which time-traveling ship? Why, the TARDIS, of course! That gathering of the Aztecs took place soon after the departure of the First Incarnation of the Doctor and his companions Barbara and Ian and his grand-daughter Susan.
Theoretical link: 'DOCTOR WHO'

And now there is at least one new version of the blipvert, edited down from its Super Bowl attention-stretcher of a minute, down to about fifteen seconds or so. In this new version, the car (We don't know who the driver is.) leaves the city and is tooling up the coastal roadway when the alien spaceship brings it on board with a tractor beam. No helicopter, no boat, no Poseidon.

In the main Toobworld, the Optima had no occupants when it finally went into the spaceship. (Unless the original passengers had a baby strapped into a car-seat in back. THERE'S a disturbing thought, which I'm very good at.) But now there could be up to four passengers in the car "Over There" in this alternate dimension. And of course, that wouldn't be the only difference between both dimensions......
Theoretical link: 'FRINGE'

But 'Sliders' would work just as well as an option....

Even if there was only the driver, the aliens had to do something with him so that the joyrider could get into the driver's seat. So..... What if those aliens had their own copy of Canamid classic "To Serve Man"?
Theoretical link: 'THE TWILIGHT ZONE'

WISH-CRAFTNow one last thing to consider - why did they all want the car? I'll accept that it was a great ride, which would be why most of those characters wanted it. (I wouldn't know. The only cars I have experience driving are a Pontiac Tempest, a Dodge Dart, a Honda Element. And I don't have a license anymore.)

But why would the Ring really want it? And why would Poseidon out of all of them?

So I'm thinking that - unbeknownst to the talent agent who owned the car - something of great value was hidden inside the car. Something that may have belonged to Poseidon or one of the other demi-gods back in the days of Legend.

Theoretical link: 'The Aprhodite Inheritance'

SPIN-OFF CITYAnd now it's probably buried in Mexico, waiting for some antiquities expedition, perhaps led by Professor Sydney Fox, to find it.

And that would be my last theoretical link: 'RELIC HUNTER'