Saturday, July 9, 2011


'Star Stories'

Laura Patch
From Wikipedia:
In May 1998, [Jennifer Aniston began dating actor Brad Pitt. They married on July 29, 2000, in a private wedding ceremony in Malibu. For a few years, their marriage was considered the rare Hollywood success. However, the couple announced their separation on January 6, 2005. Pitt and Aniston were seen together publicly after announcing their separation, even at a dinner party for Aniston's 36th birthday, and friends of the couple had declared they were reconciling. Aniston, however, filed for divorce on March 25, 2005. It was finalized on October 2, 2005. During this period there was intense speculation in the media that Pitt had been unfaithful to Aniston with his Mr. & Mrs. Smith co-star, Angelina Jolie.
In the following months, the public's reaction towards the divorce was reported in the press. The story became the headline news of media shows such as Entertainment Tonight and Access Hollywood, and made the front-pages of tabloid magazines for years, continuing till this day. 'Team Aniston' and 'Team Jolie' T-shirts appeared, with 'Team Aniston' shirts out-selling the 'Team Jolie' shirts 4:1. Aniston revealed that her divorce prompted her to reach out to her mother, Nancy, from whom she was estranged for nearly a decade. They initially became estranged when Nancy spoke about her daughter on a television show and later wrote a book entitled, From Mother and Daughter to Friends: A Memoir (1999). Aniston has also stated she was devastated by the death of her longtime therapist, whose work helped make her separation from Pitt easier. Aniston said her relationship with Pitt, which she does not regret, was "seven very intense years together" and that "it was a beautiful, complicated relationship."

The video at YouTube had the embedding option disabled, but you can see it here.


Here are the first three webisodes of the 'Warehouse 13' online adventure "Of Monsters And Men". The reason why the first chapter is so long is because half of it is a Prius blipvert... and clumsily handled, unfortunately......

That comic book rack may have been in the diner where the comic book universe adventures of the a-Ha video of 'Take On Me' took place........


Friday, July 8, 2011


On this date in 1907, Florenz Ziegfeld staged his first "Follies" on the roof of the New York Theater in New York City.


"Ziegfeld: The Man And His Women"

Paul Shenar

From Wikipedia:
Florenz Ziegfeld, Jr. (March 21, 1867 � July 22, 1932), (sometimes also called "Flo" Ziegfeld), was an American Broadway impresario, notable for his series of theatrical revues, the Ziegfeld Follies (1907�1931), inspired by the Folies Berg�re of Paris. He also produced the musical Show Boat. He was known as the "glorifier of the American girl".
The Ziegfeld Follies were a series of elaborate theatrical productions on Broadway in New York City from 1907 through 1931. They became a radio program in 1932 and 1936 as "The Ziegfeld Follies of the Air".

Inspired by the Folies Berg�res of Paris, the Ziegfeld Follies were conceived and mounted by Florenz Ziegfeld, reportedly at the suggestion of his then-wife, the entertainer Anna Held. The shows' producers were turn-of-the-century producing titans Klaw & Erlanger.

His stage spectaculars, known as the Ziegfeld Follies, began with Follies of 1907, and were produced annually until 1931. These extravaganzas, with elaborate costumes and sets, featured beauties chosen personally by Ziegfeld in production numbers choreographed to the works of prominent composers such as Irving Berlin, George Gershwin and Jerome Kern. The Follies featured many performers who, though well-known from previous work in other theatrical genres, achieved unique financial success and publicity with Ziegfeld. Included among these are Nora Bayes, Fanny Brice, W. C. Fields, Eddie Cantor, Marilyn Miller, Will Rogers, Bert Williams and Ann Pennington.

Thursday, July 7, 2011



"Pinochet In Suburbia"

Sir Derek Jacobi

From Wikipedia:
Augusto José Ramón Pinochet Ugarte (25 November 1915 – 10 December 2006) was a Chilean army general and dictator who assumed power in a coup d'état on 11 September 1973. Among his titles, he was the Commander-in-Chief of the Chilean army from 1973 to 1998, president of the Government Junta of Chile from 1973 to 1974 and President of the Republic from 1974 until transferring power to a democratically elected president in 1990.

After peacefully stepping down in 1990, Pinochet continued to serve as Commander-in-Chief of the Chilean Army until 10 March 1998, when he retired and became a senator-for-life in accordance with the 1980 Constitution. In 2004, Chilean Judge Juan Guzmán Tapia ruled that Pinochet was medically fit to stand trial and placed him under house arrest. By the time of his death on 10 December 2006, about 300 criminal charges were still pending against him in Chile for numerous human rights violations, tax evasion and embezzlement during his 17-year rule and afterwards. Pinochet was accused of having corruptly amassed a wealth of US$28 million or more.

Some authors have speculated that Argentina might have won the war had the military felt able to employ the elite VIth and VIIIth Mountain Brigades which remained sitting in the Andes guarding against possible Chilean incursions. Pinochet subsequently visited Margaret Thatcher for tea on more than one occasion. Pinochet's controversial relationship with Thatcher led Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair to mock Thatcher's Conservatives as "the party of Pinochet" in 1999.The case was a watershed event in judicial history, as it was the first time that a former government head was arrested on the principle of universal jurisdiction.

After having been placed under house arrest in Britain and initiating a judicial and public relations battle, the latter run by Thatcherite political operative Patrick Robertson, he was eventually released in March 2000 on medical grounds by the Home Secretary Jack Straw without facing trial.

Pinochet returned to Chile on 3 March 2000. His first act when landing in Santiago's airport was to triumphantly get up from his wheelchair to the acclaim of his supporters. He was first greeted by his successor as head of the Chilean armed forces, General Ricardo Izurieta. President Ricardo Lagos, who had just been sworn in on 11 March, said the retired general's televised arrival had damaged the image of Chile, while thousands demonstrated against him.

In March 2000, the Congress approved a constitutional amendment creating the status of "ex-president," which granted its owner immunity from prosecution and guaranteed him a financial allowance. In exchange, it required him to resign from his seat of senator-for-life. Of the legislators, 111 voted for, and 29 (mostly, if not all, from the Left) against.

The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Juan Guzmán's request on August 2000, and Pinochet was indicted on 1 December 2000 for the "kidnapping" of 75 opponents in the Caravan of Death case. Guzmán advanced the charge of "kidnapping" as the 75 were officially "disappeared": even though they were all most likely dead, the absence of their corpses made any charge of "homicide" difficult.

However, in July 2002, the Supreme Court dismissed Pinochet's indictment in the various human rights abuse cases, for medical reasons (vascular dementia). The debate concerned Pinochet's mental faculties, his legal team claiming that he was senile and could not remember, while others (including several physicians) claimed that he was only physically affected but retained all control of his faculties.

On 25 November 2006, Pinochet marked his 91st birthday by having his wife read a statement written by him, and read to his admirers present for his birthday: "I assume the political responsibility of all that has been done." Two days later, he was again ordered to house arrest for the kidnapping and murder of two bodyguards of Salvador Allende who were arrested the day of the 1973 coup and executed by a firing squad during the Caravan of Death episode.

However, Pinochet died a few days later, on 10 December 2006, without having been convicted of any of the many serious crimes of which he was accused.


Wednesday, July 6, 2011


At the American press screening for 'Torchwood: Miracle Day', former 'Doctor Who' producer Russell T. Davies declared to reporters that there's absolutely no chance that you'll see the Doctor show up within the contest of a 'Torchwood' story. And it's not because he's no longer the man in charge of the TARDIS.

"The Doctor's never gone into Torchwood; it's always been the other way around. Torchwood's gone into 'Doctor Who,' which I think is correct because there's a big child audience for 'Doctor Who,' and I think that would demand if we took The Doctor into Torchwood, it would be a clash of styles."

Steven Moffat is now in charge of 'Doctor Who' and hasn't used anything from the previous run of the series that he didn't create himself - like the Weeping Angels. So Captain Jack might still return to his roots, since Moffat wrote his first stories, "The Empty Child" and "The Doctor Dances". And I think he'd be right in grabbing the former Time Agent for a guest appearance, since RTD had no problem in using the Eleventh Incarnation of the Doctor for a two-part story on 'The Sarah Jane Adventures'. Fair's fair......



Today's ASOTV Showcase is in memory of the actress Anna Massey, who passed away on July 2nd at age 73. I just recently saw her in a murder mystery solved by 'Agatha Christie's Poirot' - "The Clocks".......

"Pinochet In Suburbia"

Anna Massey

By Jill Lawless, Published: July 4

Washington Post
Anna Massey, who as a young actress was killed off in Alfred Hitchcock’s “Frenzy” (1972) and later became a stalwart of British period dramas, often cast as a waspish spinster or maiden aunt, died July 2 in London. She was 73 and had cancer.

The actress was born in 1937 into a performing family — her father was Canadian actor Raymond Massey [who abandoned the family when she was two], and her mother was British actress Adrianne Allen. Her brother, Daniel Massey, also became an actor, and her godfather was director John Ford.

Ms. Massey worked most frequently in television period dramas. She appeared in TV adaptations of Anthony Trollope’s “The Pallisers,” Thomas Hardy’s “Tess of the D’Urbervilles,” Charles Dickens’ ”Oliver Twist” and many others.

Ms. Massey won Britain’s top acting award for her role in the 1986 TV adaptation of Anita Brookner’s novel “Hotel du Lac.”

In 2006, Ms. Massey played former prime minister Margaret Thatcher in the TV drama “Pinochet in Suburbia.”

From Alan Corr of RTE:
Massey was outstanding in a TV adaptation of Anita Brookner's "Hotel de Lac" in 1986, made partially from her own money, and more recently savoured the chance to play Margaret Thatcher in the 2006 TV drama "Pinochet in Suburbia". "I adored doing that," she said earnestly. "One of the reviews said I went over the top but I promise you I was under the top compared to what she was doing. She was mad. She had that waxen mad look. The poor thing now is so ill, she doesn't know where she is or if Denis is around. It's rather tragic. Do you think power does that to people? Reagan was the same wasn't he?"


Tuesday, July 5, 2011


My Iddiette friend Kristin McCracken shared this on Facebook, regarding today's top story:

Best. Tweet. Ever?

RT @drnik46: Look out, Casey Anthony. Dexter lives in Florida...

Me? I'm not going to pass judgement until I see the Lifetime movie.....



I think this will remain my favorite in-joke for the entire year. It's definitely the sweetest.....

In "The 10 Li'l Grifters Job", the 'Leverage' episode that aired over the Fourth of July weekend, everybody had to dress up as a "fictional" detective.

Sophie was Irene Adler from "A Scandal In Bohemia", a Sherlock Holmes story.

Parker was Nancy Drew.

Harrison was one of the Hardy Boys.  (Update: Originally I had him listed as Encyclopedia Brown, because that's who he thought he was.  But I've just watched that scene again and Sophie corrects him over the comm-link: he's one of the Hardy Boys.  The big "H" on his sweater should have been a give-away.)

Elliott was real-life Pinkerton agent Charlie Siringo.

But best of all?

Nate Ford (played by Timothy Hutton) was Ellery Queen.....

Timothy Hutton's father, the late Jim Hutton, played Ellery Queen in a 1970's series by the creators of 'Columbo' and 'Murder, She Wrote'.

And seeing Nate Ford in that floppy hat, the tweedy jacket, and the red sweater, it was like seeing Jim Hutton in the role once more.

So when Nate declared Ellery Queen as the greatest detective ever, I think there was more than one voice speaking......
I'll have more on these disguises later in the week....



On this date in 1687, Isaac Newton publishes Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica, ushering in a tidal wave of changes in thought that would significantly accelerate the already ongoing scientific revolution by giving it tools that produced technologically valuable results, which had theretofore been otherwise unobtainable.


'Star Trek: Voyager'

Peter Dennis



Dan Kern

From Wikipedia:
"Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica", Latin for "Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy", often called the Principia ("Principles"), is a work in three books by Sir Isaac Newton, first published 5 July 1687. Newton also published two further editions, in 1713 and 1726. The "Principia" states Newton's laws of motion, forming the foundation of classical mechanics, also Newton's law of universal gravitation, and a derivation of Kepler's laws of planetary motion (which Kepler first obtained empirically). The "Principia" is "justly regarded as one of the most important works in the history of science".

The French mathematical physicist Alexis Clairaut assessed it in 1747: "The famous book of "Mathematical Principles of natural Philosophy" marked the epoch of a great revolution in physics. The method followed by its illustrious author Sir Newton ... spread the light of mathematics on a science which up to then had remained in the darkness of conjectures and hypotheses." A more recent assessment has been that while acceptance of Newton's theories was not immediate, by the end of a century after publication in 1687, "no one could deny that" (out of the 'Principia') "a science had emerged that, at least in certain respects, so far exceeded anything that had ever gone before that it stood alone as the ultimate exemplar of science generally."

In formulating his physical theories, Newton developed and used mathematical methods now included in the field of calculus. But the language of calculus as we know it was largely absent from the "Principia"; Newton gave many of his proofs in a geometric form of infinitesimal calculus, based on limits of ratios of vanishing small geometric quantities. In a revised conclusion to the "Principia" (see "General Scholium"), Newton used his expression that became famous, "Hypotheses non fingo" ("I contrive no hypotheses").

Although the Toobworld Dynamic states that all TV shows should share the same fictional universe, it's not always a given. 'Star Trek: Voyager' definitely shares the same TV dimension as its precursor, 'Star Trek: The Next Generation'. So why does the Isaac Newton of 'Voyager' look different from that in 'TNG'?


'Star Trek: The Next Generation'

John Neville

A simple splainin for this: Data's poker buddy was a computer-generated hologram. It was created based on the data supplied by Data, making a copy to the best of its ability.

It gets more complicated when comparing the Isaac Newtons of 'Voyager' and 'Voyagers!', however. We can splain away the differences between them with the recastaway excuse of aging, or by claming that whenever Phineas Bogg and Jeffrey Jones travel back in Time, they're entering alternate TV dimensions and meeting variations of historical figures. And in this case at least, using both splainins would also be applicable.


Monday, July 4, 2011


It's a day to celebrate, but also to mourn the loss of Clarence Clemons last month.....


Happy Fourth of July! Happy Independence Day!

Or as they might say elsewhere in the world, Happy Monday!

As a Toobworld contribution to the Fourth of July theme, I'd like to offer this painting by my favorite artist, Maxfield Parrish:
"With Trumpet and Drum"
With big tin trumpet and
little red drum,
Marching like soldiers,
the children come!

The piece is entitled "With Trumpet And Drum" and it is dated from 1904. It was one of eight plates by Parrish to illustrate "Poems of Childhood" by the late Eugene Field. (He died nearly a decade earlier at the age of 45.)

As you can see in the picture, there was a clear influence for the main character in the painting:
The Gallifreyan Time Lord has met famous painters in the past, most notably Vincent Van Gogh and Leonardo da Vinci, but also Michaelangelo and Gainesborough. So why not Maxfield Parrish?

I'm not offering up any splainins as to the circumstance leading to the meeting between Parrish and the Doctor. There are not enough "facts" available to make concrete connections within the reality of Toobworld.

This is more along the lines of fanficcer territory. So as a fanfic enabler, I will make a few suggestions... if you feel inspired to write about this encounter between the Doctor and Maxfield Parrish.

1]  Their adventure should take place in 1903, giving Parrish enough time to use the Eleventh Incarnation of the Doctor as the inspiration for the little drummer boy. And it should be something that might have borne a resemblance to the finished painting - only with a little boy rather than the boyish "young" Doctor.
2]  Parrish lived in New Hampshire, so the action should take place there. As with a lot of the wild areas in New England, the mountainous terrain and back country forests of New Hampshire are home to many myths, legends, and tall tales. Large lumbering giants and small devilish imp-folk can be found in the stories there. With either group, it should be easy to come up with an alien origin for their kind.

3]  Look into the actual history for New Hampshire at the turn of the 20th Century. There might be something that happened that could be given a 'Doctor Who' twist, which has always been a staple of the show.
4]  Was the event something that only the children of the area could deal with, because the adults had all been entranced by the alien adversary?

5]  And whether you use Amy Pond as his Companion, or some other young loverly who tagged along during that hiatus for the Amy & the Doctor team between "The Big Bang" and "The Impossible Astronaut", at some point in the story she should emulate at least one of the poses in other famous paintings by Maxfield Parrish.

Me, I'm partial to "Ecstasy" myself, but "Reverie" and "Hope" might also fit the bill.

If you do end up writing some 'Doctor Who' fanfic to go with this patriotic painting, please send a copy along to me. I'd love to read it!

Again, Happy Fourth of July!




'You Are There' -
"Washington Crosses the Delaware"

Howard Wendell

From Wikipedia:
On July 4, 1826, the fiftieth anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, Adams died at his home in Quincy. Told that it was the Fourth, he answered clearly, "It is a great day. It is a good day."

His last words have been reported as "Thomas Jefferson survives". Only the first two words "Thomas Jefferson" were clearly intelligible, however.

Adams was unaware that Jefferson, his compatriot in their quest for independence, then great political rival, then later friend and correspondent, had died a few hours earlier on the very same day. Somewhat later, struggling for breath, he whispered to his granddaughter Susanna, "Help me, child! Help me!" then lapsed into a final silence.

At about 6:20, Adams was dead, leaving Charles Carroll of Carrollton as the last surviving signatory of the Declaration of Independence. John Adams died while his son John Quincy Adams was president.


Sunday, July 3, 2011


'Game Of Thrones' is over, but HBO doesn't let you take a break from great TV. The following week after the fantasy series ended its first season, their horror block-buster 'True Blood' returned for a fourth season.

Here are three scenes from the second episode, which debuts tonight at 9 pm ET on HBO. (Check your times and listings.....)



Now that we're in July, it's time to start hyping the new 'Torchwood' mini-series, "Miracle Day". I was a little worried about the project at first, especially coming off the great "Children Of Earth" from two years ago. And because they changed it up with American production values (courtesy of Starz!) and a ton of American actors.

But I'm reassured by the fact that Entertainment Weekly gave it an A-.

Here's the simple premise: what if suddenly no one on Earth died?



The Sunday commercial break......

While watching the AMC marathon of 'The Rifleman' off my DVR yesterday, I saw this commercial:

That song in the background was bothering me; that I knew it and remembered hearing it often, but I just couldn't place it.

Took me five minutes to find the answer online, and that was mostly taken up with just logging in!

Long ago I lost any sense of amazement at what I could find on the internet. That's been replaced by the shock at the things I can't find. (Like a picture of Joel Grey in the NBC production of "George M.!" back in the early 70's......)



I wonder if there's such a thing as Video Voodoo..... You alter a video like this and it damns the subject to turn out that way.......

Hopefully, there'll be more opportunities from 'Toddlers & Tiaras' to make videos like this!



Friday marked the 70th anniversary of commercial television (not of television itself).

Here are a few videos about the early days for the medium which made the creation of the fictional universe known as Toobworld possible:



Two more years and America will be remembering, honoring, and paying their respects during the first three days of July - the 150th anniversary of the Battle at Gettysburg.....



Today is Tom Cruise's 49th birthday.....


'South Park'

Trey Parker

From Wikipedia:
Thomas Cruise Mapother IV (born July 3, 1962), better known as Tom Cruise, is an American film actor and producer. He has been nominated for three Academy Awards and he has won three Golden Globe Awards.

Cruise first debuted in a major movie in Francis Ford Coppola's film The Outsiders, released in March 1983. His first leading role was in the film Risky Business, which was released in August 1983. After playing the role of a heroic naval pilot in the popular and financially successful 1986 film Top Gun, Cruise continued in this vein, playing a secret agent in a series of Mission: Impossible action films in the 1990s and 2000s. In addition to these heroic roles, he has starred in a variety of other successful films such as Days of Thunder (1990), Jerry Maguire (1996), Magnolia (1999), Vanilla Sky (2001), Minority Report (2002), The Last Samurai (2003), Collateral (2004) and War of the Worlds (2005).

Since 2005, Cruise and Paula Wagner have been in charge of the United Artists film studio, with Cruise as producer and star and Wagner as the chief executive. Cruise is also known for his support of and adherence to the Church of Scientology.

During Cruise's marriage to Nicole Kidman, the couple endured public speculation about their sex life and rumors that Cruise was gay. In 1998, he successfully sued the Daily Express, a British tabloid which alleged that his marriage to Kidman was a sham designed to cover up his homosexuality. In May 2001 he filed a lawsuit against gay porn actor Chad Slater. Slater had allegedly told the celebrity magazine Actustar that he had had an affair with Cruise. Both Slater and Cruise denied this, and in August 2001 Slater was ordered to pay $10 million to Cruise in damages after Slater declared he could not afford to defend himself against the suit and would therefore default. Cruise also sued Michael Davis, publisher of Bold Magazine, who alleged but never confirmed that he had video that would prove Cruise was gay. The suit was dropped in exchange for a public statement by Davis that the video was not of Cruise, and that Cruise was heterosexual.