Saturday, March 24, 2012


Here's a scary thought - what if the televangelist was a Time Lord?



My thanks to the gang at the Crossovers Forum in Facebook for these:


I've heard that 'Saturday Night Live' allegedly ripped off this idea for the sketch, but I'm not sure from who, so that's why the word "allegedly" was inserted......






Margery Allingham

Peter Davison


Earth Prime-Time

From Wikipedia:
Albert Campion is a fictional character in a series of detective novels and short stories by Margery Allingham. He first appeared as a supporting character in "The Crime at Black Dudley" (1929), an adventure story involving a ring of criminals, and would go on to feature in another 17 novels and over 20 short stories. Supposedly created as a parody of Dorothy L. Sayers' detective Lord Peter Wimsey, Campion established his own identity, and matured and developed as the series progressed. After Allingham's death her husband Philip Youngman Carter completed her last Campion book and wrote two more before his own death.

Albert Campion is a pseudonym used by a man who was born in 1900 into a prominent British aristocratic family. Early novels hint that he was part of the royal family but this suggestion is dropped in later works. He was educated at Rugby School and the (fictitious) St. Ignatius' College, Cambridge (according to a mini-biography included in "Sweet Danger"). Ingenious, resourceful and well-educated, in his 20's he assumed the name Campion and began a life as an adventurer and detective.

The name "Campion" may have its origin in the Old French word for "champion". Another source says the name was suggested by Allingham's husband Philip Youngman Carter, and may allude to the Jesuit martyr St. Edmund Campion. Carter and St. Edmund Campion were both graduates of Christ's Hospital school. Campion's fictional college, St. Ignatius, supports the Edmund Campion connection, since St. Ignatius of Loyola was the founder of the Jesuits.

'Albert Campion' is revealed early on to be a pseudonym. In "Mystery Mile", his true first name is said to be Rudolph, while his surname begins with a K. In "The Fashion in Shrouds" he also mentions his first name being Rudolph but confides he changed it asking people to call him Albert as he didn't like the name Rudolph.

Campion has used many other names in the course of his career. "Mornington Dove" (although in the 1988 Avon edition (page 72) of "The Black Dudley Murder" he is called "Mornington Dodd") and "the Honourable Tootles Ash" are mentioned in "The Crime at Black Dudley"; "Christopher Twelvetrees" and "Orlando" are mentioned in "Look to the Lady".

Allingham makes various references to Campion's aristocratic background, and hints at a connection to royalty in several asides. A study of the books suggests his father was a Viscount, and was already dead at the start of the series. Campion's mother is mentioned several times and writes a letter in "The Fashion in Shrouds", and Campion borrows a car from his older brother (apparently the current holder of the title) in "Mystery Mile", but neither of them appear in person. In "Sweet Danger" it was mentioned that his brother was "still unmarried" and therefore Campion is likely to "come into the title some day" although there is no suggestion in the books that this actually occurs. 

His sister Valentine Ferris plays a central part in "The Fashion in Shrouds"; in that book, it is revealed that they are both estranged from most of their family. In "Police at the Funeral", the venerable Caroline Faraday is aware of his true identity, and knows his grandmother Emily (who she refers to as "The Dowager") - she calls him by his real name of "Rudolph" and states at one point that the rest of his family blame Emily for encouraging Campion in his adventurous ways.

Albert Campion is mentioned at the Wold Newton site (links to the left, adventurists!)


Friday, March 23, 2012


In the world of TV crossovers, I'd say this is big - even when it's so trivial......

In last night's 'CSI' episode "Malice In Wonderland", the 'CSI' franchise officially merged with the 'Law & Order' franchise*:

The New York Ledger is the tabloid often seen in the 'Law & Order' mothership and just about all of the spin-offs. And it had its own series as well - 'Deadline'.


* Dick Wolf would tell you that 'Law & Order' is not a franchise. It's a "brand".......


No, this isn't one of our daily "ASOTV" showcases, literary edition.....

In the latest 'Grimm' episode ("The Plumed Serpent"), Portland detective Nick Burkhardt was investigating an arson case which involved one of the "wesen", a creature known as a "Daemonfeuer".

From Wikipedia:
Daemonfeuer (DAY-mon-foy-uhr) are dragon-like creatures. There are not a lot of these around anymore. Daemonfeuer can cough up vapor produced of their own fat which is highly flammable. Igniting the produced vapor makes them appear as if breathing fire. Daemonfeuer is a combination of the German words for demon and fire. First seen in "Plumed Serpent".

A stripper/performance artist named Ariel was the daughter of the suspect and she knew that Nick was staring at the tattoo of a dragon on her back when he entered her dressing room.

"I got it long before the books," she said simply.

"The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" exists only in two fictional universes so far - the Literary one and the Movie Universe. (Eventually its two sequels will join it in the Cineverse as well.) For the TV Universe, it is only considered as a book and a movie.


Recently Sony, who controls these Stieg Larsson properties, put pressure on CBS regarding their proposed pilot 'Quean'. To be produced by Warner Bros. TV and Silver Pictures, 'Quean' was going to be about a girl who could hack computers working for a private eye.

The show's creator agreed to overhaul the concept so that she would now be working for a law firm. I think the show's original concept was generic enough, but Sony wasn't satisfied. An outside law firm advised CBS to just drop the whole project and so now it's dead.

It's a shame, too, if only because I like that title of 'Quean'.

Since Sony was so adamant on this, I'm thinking that they plan on some day creating a TV show about Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist - probably once the movie trilogy has run its course. And so they didn't want any clones, no matter how slight the resemblance, to be littering and diluting the TV Landscape.



My latest series for lunch-hour viewing at work is a ten episode compilation of 'The Rogues'. It's the story of an international family of swindlers, led by David Niven, Gig Young, and Charles Boyer, with Robert Coote and Gladys Cooper providing support from their familiial base of operations.

I started off with "The Personal Touch" and it felt like the series launch that it was - all of the principles appeared (although Boyer was a voice-over), and there was an elaborate ruse to open the episode which established the premise.

But check out these guest stars:

Walter Matthau
Dina Merrill
Alfred Ryder
John Dehner

And there was a great supporting cast of character actors:

Marcel Hillaire
Dabbs Greer
John Banner
Johnny Silver

I now have another episode under my belt, with James Gregory playing their mark, and once again the whole family was involved. If they can keep up the quality I've seen in this light-hearted con game, it should be a pleasurable ten lunch hours at work!




Ellis Peters


Sir Derek Jacobi

Earth Prime-Time

(Literature, Television)

From Wikipedia:
Brother Cadfael is the fictional main character in a series of historical murder mysteries written between 1977 and 1994 by the linguist-scholar Edith Pargeter under the name "Ellis Peters". The character of Cadfael himself is a Welsh Benedictine monk living at Shrewsbury Abbey, in western England, in the first half of the 12th century. The historically accurate stories are set between about 1135 and about 1145, during "The Anarchy", the destructive contest for the crown of England between King Stephen and Empress Maud.

As a character, Cadfael "combines the curious mind of a scientist/pharmacist with a knight-errant", entering the cloister in his forties after being both a soldier and a sailor, this experience gives him an array of talents and skills useful in monastic life. He is a skillful observer of human nature, inquisitive by nature, energetic, a talented herbalist (work he learned in the Holy Lands), and has an innate, although modern, sense of justice and fair-play. Abbots call upon him as a medical examiner, detective, doctor, and diplomat. His worldly knowledge, although useful, gets him in trouble with the more doctrinaire characters of the series, and the seeming contradiction between the secular and the spiritual worlds forms a central and continuing theme of the stories.

From the source:
"I have seen death in many shapes, I've been a soldier and a sailor in my time; in the east, in the Crusade, and for ten years after Jerusalem fell. I've seen men killed in battle. Come to that, I've killed men in battle. I never took joy in it, that I can remember, but I never drew back from it either. [...] I was with Robert of Normandy's company and a mongrel lot we were, Britons, Normans, Flemings, Scots, Bretons - name them, they were there! After the city was settled and Baldwin crowned, most of us went home over three or four years, but I had taken to the sea by then, and I stayed. There were pirates ranged those coasts, we always had work to do. [...] I served as a free man-at-arms for a while, and then I was ripe, and it was time. But I had had my way in the world. [Now] I grow herbs and dry them and make remedies for all the ills that visit us. [...] To heal men, after years of injuring them? What could be more fitting? A man does what he must do."

Using the search engine at the Wold Newton site, I found no mention of Brother Cadfael. The fact that he lived centuries before the impact of the meteorite at Wold Newton is hardly a deterrent, considering that several members of the Wold Newton family can be found thousands of years before. Neither is his vow of celibacy a roadblock to tracing his family tree, considering that he sired a son while still a soldier in the Holy Lands.

But until such time - if any! - when some Wold Newtonist does the research into a connection for Brother Cadfael, I'm content with making a few suggestions as to his associations with characters to be found in the Tele-Folks Directory of Toobworld.

I've made the suggestion before, but Cadfael may have teamed up with a Gallifreyan Time Lord without ever knowing it - and I'm not referring to the Doctor! It could be he had dealings with the Meddling Monk, who could have returned to that basic time period in Earth's history, or he was still stuck there from a century before, thanks to the First Incarnation of the Doctor.

And then there is the family of Sir Thomas Grey of 'Covington Cross' castle. The exact dates for the episodes seen in this short-lived ABC series were never really nailed down.

But all in all, Brother Cadfael on his own is a notable addition to this run of Great Detectives as seen in Earth Prime-Time.


Thursday, March 22, 2012


I've seen only two of the three "Incident" movies so far, and in each of those first two, one of "the Numbers" from 'Lost' were cited.

In "The Incident", eight German prisoners of war were beaten to death by fellow prisoners and their deaths were listed as "natural causes".

In "Against Her Will: An Incident In Baltimore", twenty-three patients were crowded together in horrible conditions down in the basement of the Walnut Hill mental health facility.

4 8 15 16 23 42......


For those fans of the British mystery series 'Foyle's War', one of the benefits from the show was learning little known historical facts from the British homefront during World War II. Creator Anthony Horowitz really did his homework to find such factoids upon which he could hang his murder mysteries to be solved by Christopher Foyle.

It's been announced that there will be a few more episodes to the series, but in the meantime if you're a fan of the show and would be interested in seeing something along similar lines, then I have a suggestion for you, one from an American point of view:

"The Incident" was a 1990 TV movie which starred Walter Matthau, Harry Morgan, Peter Firth, Barnard Hughes, Susan Blakely, Robert Carradine, and William Schallert. Matthau played a small-town lawyer in 1944 Colorado who was forced to defend a German soldier from the prisoner of war camp outside of town. (He was accused of killing the town's beloved old doctor.)

This TV movie led to two more outings starring Matthau and Morgan - "Against Her Will: An Incident In Baltimore" and "An Incident In A Small Town". All three are available from Netflix and I recommend them, especially the first one because of its 'Foyle's War' feel.....

To learn more about "The Incident", check out this website.....



From the BBC:
Former 'Emmerdale' actress Jenna-Louise Coleman has landed the role of the Time Lord's new companion in 'Doctor Who', the BBC has confirmed.

Producer Steven Moffat announced the actress will replace Karen Gillan's character Amy Pond when she leaves the show in the next series.

Other credits for Coleman include the four part mini-series 'Titanic', which was scripted by the creator of 'Downton Abbey', Julian Fellowes. She'll be making her first appearance in the 'Doctor Who' Christmas special.

I found this quote by Moffat interesting and one to stir the televisiological pozz'bilities in what passes for my brain:

Who she's playing, how the Doctor meets her, and even where he finds her, are all part of one of the biggest mysteries the Time Lord ever encounters. Even by the Doctor's standards, this isn't your usual boy meets girl."

And in the BBC press release, they mentioned that the Doctor and Coleman's companion will meet in a "
dramatic turn of events as the show builds towards its enormous, climactic 50th anniversary year".

Of course, isn't everything of import on 'Doctor Who' a dramatic turn of events?

But here's what I'm thinking.....

What if Jenna-Louise Coleman's character turns out to be a link to the Doctor's Past, and by "Past", I mean that she serves as a bridge to the old series for 'Doctor Who'.

What if she is somehow related to someone who once travelled with the Doctor? (I wouldn't want her to be that character from an earlier Incarnation's adventures. Then we would have to deal with the recastaway problem.)

And I have that someone in mind.....

What if it turned out that Coleman's character is the daughter of Zoe Heriot?

Because Zoe's memory has been wiped clean of her time with the Doctor, there wouldn't be any residual baggage to deal with - at least, not until the show wanted to bring Wendy Paddington back in the fold for an episode or two. (In much the same way that Sarah Jane Smith returned to the show.)

It's my suggestion only. But it certainly would fulfill all those hints in Moffat's statement:

Who she's playing, how the Doctor meets her, and even where he finds her"

Zoe's daughter, during an adventure in the Future, and on board the "Wheel in Space".....

I know it's a long-shot, but it would be a fitting connection to the old series as we head into the celebration of the 50th anniversary!




Fyodor Dostoyevsky

'Crime And Punishment'

Ian McDiarmid

To Be Determined

Multiversal Recastaway

From Wikipedia:
"Crime and Punishment" ("Pryestupleniye i nakazaniye") is a novel by the Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky. "Crime and Punishment" focuses on the mental anguish and moral dilemmas of Rodion Romanovich Raskolnikov, an impoverished ex-student in St. Petersburg who formulates and executes a plan to kill an unscrupulous pawnbroker for her cash. Raskolnikov argues that with the pawnbroker's money he can perform good deeds to counterbalance the crime, while ridding the world of a worthless parasite. He also commits this murder to test his own hypothesis that some people are naturally capable of such things, and even have the right to do them. Several times throughout the novel, Raskolnikov justifies his actions by connecting himself mentally with Napoleon Bonaparte, believing that murder is permissible in pursuit of a higher purpose.

Porfiry Petrovich – The detective in charge of solving the murders of Lizaveta and Alyona Ivanovna, who, along with Sonya, move Raskolnikov towards confession. Unlike Sonya, however, Porfiry does this through psychological games. Despite the lack of evidence, he becomes certain Raskolnikov is the murderer following several conversations with him, but gives him the chance to confess voluntarily. He attempts to confuse and to provoke the unstable Raskolnikov in an attempt to coerce him to confess.


'Crime and Punishment' was a 2000 television serial produced by the BBC, starring John Simm as Raskolnikov and Ian McDiarmid as Porfiry Petrovich.

There were several TV versions of "Crime And Punshment" before the 2000 adaptation came along. One thing which might rule in this production's favor would be if they brought more of the novel into the series.

I found no mention of Porfiry in the main Wold Newton site, so there are no established theories as to his connection to members of the Wold Newton family. But as for the Tele-Folks Directory, I have a theory.....

Over the years it has been stated that Porfiry was the inspiration for the creation of Lt. Columbo by Levinson & Link. As a novel, "Crime And Punishment" exists in the TV Universe, as does its writer, Dostoyevsky. So his novel is actual a "true crime" chronicle, one which Columbo may have come across and realized during his reading that Porfiry's methods might be applicable in his own investigations once he became a detective. Columbo knew that he was not as smart as those around him, so he would be happy for any advantage he could find.....


Wednesday, March 21, 2012


Since we started the Literary edition of the "As Seen On TV" showcase this year, we've also featured televersions for Sherlock Holmes, Dr. Watson, Father Brown, and Hercule Poirot. For 
this week in the showcase, we stayed away from the biggies like Miss Jane Marple or Peter Lord Wimsey. This gave others the chance to shine.


Grace Mitchell

From Wikipedia:
Gladys Mitchell (21 April 1901 – 27 July 1983) was an English author best known for her creation of Mrs. Bradley, the heroine of numerous detective novels. She also wrote under the pseudonyms Stephen Hockaby and Malcolm Torrie. Feted during her life (called "the Great Gladys" by Philip Larkin), her work was largely neglected for the two decades after her death.

Her first novel ("Speedy Death", 1929) introduced Beatrice Adela Lestrange Bradley, a polymathic psychoanalyst and author who was featured in a further 65 novels. Her strong views on social and philosophical issues reflected those of her author and her assistant, Laura Menzies; they appear to have been something of a self-portrait of the young Mitchell.

Mitchell was an early member of the Detection Club along with G. K. Chesterton, Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers and throughout the 1930s was considered to be one of the "Big Three women detective writers", but she often challenged and mocked the conventions of the genre - notably in her earliest books, such as the first novel "Speedy Death", where there is a particularly surprising twist to the plot, or her parodies of Christie in "The Mystery of a Butcher's Shop" (1929) and "The Saltmarsh Murders" (1932). Her plots and settings were unconventional with Freudian psychology, witchcraft (notably in "The Devil at Saxon Wall" [1935] and "The Worsted Viper" [1943]) and the supernatural (naiads and Nessie, ghosts and Greek gods) as recurrent themes.

'The Mrs. Bradley Mysteries'

Dame Diana Rigg

Earth Prime-Time

From Wikipedia:
'The Mrs Bradley Mysteries' is a British television drama series, produced in-house by the BBC for broadcast on the BBC One channel, based on the character created by detective writer Gladys Mitchell. It ran in 1998 and 1999, consisting of five episodes in total; a one-off special in the first year followed by a series of four episodes in the second.

Some co-production funding was contributed by the United States PBS broadcaster WGBH. In the US, the series was shown in PBS's 'Mystery!' anthology strand, the host of which was Diana Rigg, who was also the star of 'The Mrs Bradley Mysteries'. Wearing 1920s clothes, she introduced each episode to the audience:

"Adela Bradley doesn't mince words. And why should she. They are her greatest weapon against fools, cads, criminals...and ex-lovers. Words also came easily to Adela's creator, Gladys Mitchell, who published nearly eighty novels in her long lifetime. Gladys introduced Mrs. Bradley in 1929 in the book Speedy Death. She endowed her breezy heroine with attributes she herself possessed including an interest in Freud and a passion for all things British: Morris dancing, mayday rituals, and the Loch Ness Monster. Over the course of some sixty-six mysteries, Adela Bradley married and divorced three husbands, was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire, and a consultant to the British Home Office. She also developed prodigious abilities at pub darts, snooker, billiards, and knife throwing. One thing she cannot do is knit."

Joining Mrs. B. is her handsome confidant and chauffeur, George Moody, played by Neil Dudgeon. Wherever their Rolls Royce carries them, they encounter murders that people are just too embarrassed to report to the police.

The characteristic cackle and crocodilian looks were absent, and the plots and characters were changed.

From the source:
Mrs. Bradley was dry without being shrivelled, and bird-like without being pretty. She reminded Alastair Bing, who was afraid of her, of the reconstruction of a pterodactyl he had once seen in a German museum. There was the same inhuman malignity in her expression as in that of the defunct bird, and, like it, she had a cynical smirk about her mouth even when her face was in repose. She possessed nasty, dry, claw-like hands, and her arms, yellow and curiously repulsive, suggested the plucked wings of a fowl…
Strange to say, her voice belied her appearance, for, instead of the birdlike twitter one might have expected to hear issuing from those beaked lips, her utterance was slow, mellifluous, and slightly drawled; unctuous, rich, and reminiscent of dark, smooth treacle.

It doesn't appear as though Mrs. Bradley has been considered in connection to the Wold Newton Universe, at least based on a search of the prime website for Philip Jose Farmer's concept.  But there might be something to be found in such trivia as theories of relateeveety......


Tuesday, March 20, 2012


It's Two for Tuesday during our look at the Great Literary TV Detectives with Wold Newton overtones. So we have two VERY different portrayals of that "amiable Asian" created by Earl Der Biggers.


'The Amazing Chan And The Chan Clan'

Keye Luke

The Tooniverse

From Wikipedia:
In the 1970s, Hanna-Barbera produced an animated series called 'The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan'. Keye Luke, who had played Chan's son in many Chan films of the 1930s and '40s, lent his voice to Charlie, who had a much-expanded vocabulary this time around. The series focused, however, on Chan's children, played mostly by Asian-American child actors. Jodie Foster alternated with Leslie Kumamota in voicing Chan's daughter Anne.


"The Return Of Charlie Chan"

Ross Martin

The Land Of Remakes
The Movie of the Week TV dimension

From Wikipedia:
"The Return of Charlie Chan", a television film starring Ross Martin as Chan, was made in 1971 but was not aired until 1979.

(The Charlie Chan for Earth Prime-Time was played by J. Carroll Naish, who was featured once before in Inner Toob......)

From Wikipedia:
Charlie Chan is a fictional Chinese-American detective created by Earl Derr Biggers. Loosely based on Honolulu detective Chang Apana, Biggers conceived of the benevolent and heroic Chan as an alternative to Yellow Peril stereotypes, such as villains like Fu Manchu. Chan is a detective for the Honolulu police, though many stories feature Chan traveling the world as he investigates mysteries and solves crimes.

The character of Charlie Chan was created by Earl Derr Biggers. In 1919, while on vacation in Hawaii, Biggers planned a detective novel to be called "The House Without a Key". He did not begin to write the novel until four years later, however, when he was inspired to add a Chinese American police officer to the plot after reading in a newspaper of Chang Apana and Lee Fook, two Chinese-American detectives on the Honolulu police force. Biggers, who disliked the Yellow Peril stereotypes he found when he came to California, explicitly conceived of the character as an alternative to them: "Sinister and wicked Chinese are old stuff, but an amiable Chinese on the side of law and order has never been used."

Chan first appeared in Biggers' novels, but went on to be featured in a number of media. Over four dozen films featuring Charlie Chan have been made, beginning in 1926. The character was at first portrayed by Asian actors, and the films met with little success. In 1931, the Fox Film Corporation cast Swedish actor Warner Oland as Chan in "Charlie Chan Carries On"; the film was a success, and Fox went on to produce 15 more Chan films with Oland in the title role. 

After Oland's death, American actor Sidney Toler was cast as Chan; Toler made 22 Chan films, first for Fox and then for Monogram Studios. After Toler's death, six more films were made, starring Roland Winters.

In addition, a number of Spanish- and Chinese-language Chan films were made during the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s. American-made Chan films were shown in China to much success, where the character was popular and respected. More recent film adaptations in the 1990s have been unsuccessful. The character has also been featured in several radio programs, two television shows, and a number of comics.

Interpretations of Chan by critics are split, especially as relates to his ethnicity. Positive assessors of Chan argue that he is portrayed as intelligent, benevolent and honorable — in contrast to the adverse depictions of evil or conniving Chinese then current on page and screen. Others state that Chan, despite his good qualities, reinforces certain Asian stereotypes, such as an alleged incapacity to speak fluent English and the possession of an overly tradition-bound and subservient nature.

As for the Wold Newton influence which could be shared with the televersion of Charlie Chan, Toobworld Central turns once again to Dennis Powers:

There is one detective that I believe deserves to be in the Wold Newton Universe, if only for his brilliant detective reasoning, yet like many others in the Wold Newton family he was also greatly traveled. I speak, of course, of Charlie Chan, who I propose is the son of Fu Manchu.

According to Farmer, Fu Manchu was likely the son of William Clayton and Ling Ju Hai, a green eyed Chinese beauty born in Vietnam circa 1840. Although raised by his grandfather and his mother, Fu Manchu was two things frowned upon in Asian societies: illegitimate and part Caucasian. We have then the roots of his animosity towards western society.

Now how does Charlie Chan fit in all this? When Charlie Chan first appeared in print in 1925, he was Sergeant Chan. We can surmise that he was about thirty-eight years old, which would have made his birth date around 1887, just about the time I surmised that Fu Manchu was still using his birth name of Ling Fu Shan. We cannot guess at Charlie Chan's name, although it is probable that it was something like Ling _____ Shan. Charlie Chan never gives much about his background. We only learn that he emigrated to the United States as a young man. 

We can only speculate that his character was formed at an early age and that he was rather disgusted at his father's machinations. He would have been young when his father assumed the identity of Fu Manchu, but we can imagine Fu Manchu bragging to his son about how clever he was to raise himself up and change identities. Charlie would have been around fifteen in 1902 when Fu Manchu's plans in China ended in disaster.

We can surmise that he took the opportunity to escape from his father's clutches once and for all by eluding his Si Fan guardians, making his way to Hawaii and assuming a new identity. Naturally he never revealed any of this information for fear of retaliation against his family by his father. Yet he used his brilliant detective mind to make himself available to the police bureaus around the world and thwart the schemes of his father whenever possible.

As this theory of relateeveety connects 'The New Adventures Of Charlie Chan' to 'The Adventures Of Fu Manchu', I'm keen to embrace it!

(My thanks once again to Dennis Powers!)


Monday, March 19, 2012



John R. Coryell

"The Adventures Of Nick Carter"

Robert Conrad

Earth Prime-Time

Multiversal Recastaway

From Wikipedia:
Nick Carter is a fictional character who began as a pulp fiction private detective and has appeared in a variety of formats over more than a century.

Nick Carter first appeared in a dime novel entitled "The Old Detective's Pupil; or, The Mysterious Crime of Madison Square" on 18 September 1886. This novel was written by John R. Coryell from a story by Ormond G. Smith, the son of one of the founders of Street & Smith.

In 1972, the actor Robert Conrad made a television pilot set in the Victorian era. "The Adventures of Nick Carter" that was shown as a made for television movie.

From the Thrilling Detective web site:
"The Little Giant" first appeared as a 19th century detective and adventurer in Street and Smith's "New York Weekly" dime novel, on September 18, 1886. He was young, strong, dedicated to clean living (No cigarettes! No booze!) confident, a master of disguise, and possessor of a keen mind, filled with more trivia than anyone would ever need to know (except, of course, for dime novel master sleuths!) and otherworldly strength, able to "lift a horse with ease... while a heavy man is seated in the saddle... he can place four packs of playing cards together, and tear them in halves between his thumbs and fingers."

No wonder pulp historian Jess Nevins refers to him as "the Grandfather of superheroes."

It seems that Nick's dad, the legendary detective "Old Sim" Carter, had raised his son from an early age to become a pefect mental and physical specimen.

Upon reaching adulthood, Nick becomes the world's greatest detective, with a swank apartment on madison Avenue in New York City, although his cases frequently have him hopping all over the world, frequently accompanied by his loyal (and manly) partners-in-arms Patsy and Scrubby. He appeared in three stories written by Coryell, and then, literally thousands more in various Street & Smith publications, mostly written by Frederic van Rensselaer Day (1862-1922). 

From the Wold Newton web site
by Dennis Powers:
According the the pulps, Simpson Carter, a detective, also had a son whom he trained to be the best detective in the world. Despite being diminutive, Nick Carter had an amazing amount of strength and stamina.

Yet Nick Carter was not Simpson's son but rather his great uncle of sorts. Nick Carter was the son of John Carter and Margaret Butler, sister of Rhett. After Margaret died in the Civil War, John placed Nicholas in Simpson's care while he went to mine for gold. John Carter was gone for ten years during which he had his first trip to Barsoom.

Simpson Carter was a Private Detective and he took the boy under his wing. Noting his precocious gifts, [Sim Carter] trained him in all manner of disciplines and athletics. This training regime would be copied and extended by James Clark Wildman for his son, whom the world knows as Clark Savage. His mutant genes really showed for although he was only 5'4", Nick Carter could lift a horse with a man seated in the saddle. He is also a master of disguise, a linguist and well skilled in various detective arts.

I think after this week in which I lost my head over the new "John Carter" movie and my desire to include it in the TV Universe, Team Toobworld probably figured out that I'm more than willing to accept this premise as being true for Toobworld as well.

Although Toobworld Central must reject the later incarnations of Nick Carter as the character kept getting updated to fit the times (since they never appeared on TV), we're still willing to entertain theories of "relateeveety" about the man.  For one, Sgt. Vincent Carter of the United States Marine Corps ('Gomer Pyle, USMC') may have been one of his great grandsons.  Another son may have married a black woman or had an affair with one in New York City, which would have led to Nick Carter having a black great-great-granddaughter working as a detective with the NYPD, Joss Carter ('Person Of Interest').  (Her full first name may be Jocelyn.) 


Sunday, March 18, 2012


Although this is set in the Tooniverse, and thus has no impact on Earth Prime-Time, still it's one of the best ever crossovers in a commercial.


The Toobworld Dynamic is global. And even though we in "Telemerica" don't have to accept what happens in international television as being pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, on our country's TV sets, that doesn't mean we can't refute that it exists.

This bit o' "quantoon physics" is from Thailand.......


Weeks after the series 'Chuck' ended, I'm still enjoying this clip from the finale:


Going through 'Downton Abbey' withdrawal now that Season Two has ended? Maybe this might sate your appetite.....


Today we're kicking off a week of ASOTV showcases featuring some of the Great Detectives of Literature - as seen on TV. Whenever possible, we'll also have mention of their place in the Wold Newton Universe, an ally of the Toobworld Dynamic. (But we're not connected to the work of Philip Jose Farmer and Win Scott Eckert.) We'll see if such O'Bservances can be applied to their televersions in Earth Prime-Time as well....


Rex Stout

'A Nero Wolfe Mystery'

Maury Chaykin

Earth Prime-Time


From Wikipedia:
Nero Wolfe is a fictional detective, created in 1934 by the American mystery writer Rex Stout. Wolfe's confidential assistant Archie Goodwin narrates the cases of the detective genius. Stout wrote 33 novels and 39 short stories from 1934 to 1974, with most of them set in New York City. Wolfe's residence, a luxurious brownstone on West 35th Street, features prominently in the series. Many radio, television and film adaptations were made from his works.

The Nero Wolfe corpus was nominated for Best Mystery Series of the Century at Bouchercon 2000, the world's largest mystery convention, and Rex Stout was a nominee for Best Mystery Writer of the Century.

Archie Goodwin, the narrator of the stories, frequently describes Wolfe as weighing "a seventh of a ton" (about 286 pounds or 130 kilograms). At the time of the first book, 1934, this was intended to indicate unusual obesity, especially through the use of the word "ton" as the unit of measure. In 1947 Archie writes, "He weighs between 310 and 390, and he limits his physical movements to what he regards as the irreducible essentials

"Wolfe's most extravagant distinction is his extreme antipathy to literal extravagance. He will not move," wrote J. Kenneth Van Dover in "At Wolfe's Door: The Nero Wolfe Novels of Rex Stout":

He insists upon the point: under no circumstances will he leave his home or violate his routines in order to facilitate an investigation. The exceptions are few and remarkable. Instead of spreading the principles of order and justice throughout his society, Wolfe imposes them dogmatically and absolutely within the walls of his house — the brownstone on West Thirty-Fifth Street — and he invites those who are troubled by an incomprehensible and threatening environment to enter the controlled economy of the house and to discover there the source of disorder in their own lives.

Wikipedia describes the key point regarding Wolfe's position in the WNU:
In 1956, John D. Clark theorized in an article in the "Baker Street Journal" that Wolfe was the offspring of an affair between Sherlock Holmes and Irene Adler (a character from "A Scandal in Bohemia"). Clark suggested that the two had had an affair in Montenegro in 1892, and that Nero Wolfe was the result. The idea was later co-opted by William S. Baring-Gould and implied in the novels of Nicholas Meyer, but there is no evidence that Rex Stout had any such connection in mind. 

Certainly there is no mention of it in any of the stories, although a painting of Sherlock Holmes does hang over Archie Goodwin's desk in Nero Wolfe's office. This suggests that in the Nero Wolfe universe, Sherlock Holmes is a real person, not a fictional one.

Some commentators, noting both physical and psychological resemblances, suggest Sherlock's brother Mycroft Holmes as a more likely father for Wolfe. Commentators have noted a coincidence in the names "Sherlock Holmes" and "Nero Wolfe": the same vowels appear in the same order. In 1957 Ellery Queen called this "The Great O-E Theory" and suggested that it derived from the father of mysteries, Edgar Allan Poe.

Some Wold Newton theorists have suggested the French thief Arsène Lupin as the father of Nero Wolfe. They note that in one story Lupin has an affair with the queen of a Balkan principality, which may be Montenegro by another name. Further, they note that the name Lupin resembles the French word for wolf, loup.

From the source:
"I suggest beginning with autobiographical sketches from each of us, and here is mine. I was born in Montenegro and spent my early boyhood there. At the age of sixteen I decided to move around, and in fourteen years I became acquainted with most of Europe, a little of Africa, and much of Asia, in a variety of roles and activities. Coming to this country in nineteen-thirty, not penniless, I bought this house and entered into practice as a private detective. I am a naturalized American citizen."

Maury Chaykin's portrayal of Nero Wolfe was not the first time the character was seen on TV - in an earlier series, William Conrad played a modernized televersion of Wolfe.  However, since the A&E series was set in the proper time period, then it has been given the position of being the official portrait of Nero Wolfe.

However, I am willing to entertain the theory that Conrad's televersion is Nero Wolfe, Jr.......