Saturday, April 5, 2014


This will have something of an impact on Skitlandia as well as Earth Prime-Time......


I always say no attention should be paid to the credits, especially when it comes to the names of characters.  What matters more is that character's name as printed out or spoken within the context of the onscreen story.

And it looks like it happens to the actors who play those characters as well.....

It's supposed to be "Cliff Potts".  He had a recurring role in 'The Name Of The Game' as Andy Hill, the executive assistant to Glenn Howard, the publisher of Howard Publications.

Every so often Potts would have the lead in an episode rather than Gene Barry, Robert Stack, or Tony Franciosa.  One of those occasions was the episode "Pineapple Rose".  But unfortunately his moment in the sun was ruined by that opening title credit.

From the IMDb:
Cliff Potts was born on January 5, 1942 in Glendale, California, USA as Clifton Vandyke Potts.

I haven't found any mention anywhere that he went by the name of "Cliff Potter".  

Over forty years after and I wonder if it sticks in his craw?  I would have thought Universal would have done what it could to change it as quickly as possible.  But then, I'm not tight with a dollar like studio heads are......


Friday, April 4, 2014


In the 'Psych' finale, Shawn Spencer left Santa Barbara to join his lady love, Detective Juliet O'Hara, in San Francisco.  (She was working there as head detective for Chief Karen Vick, her old boss at the SBPD.)

Burton "Gus" Guster gave up everything he had in Santa Barbara to follow Shawn.  Once in Frisco, they tracked down Jules and Chief Vick at a crime scene, where Shawn offered his services as a "psychic" detective.
But Chief Vick had to turn him down.  Apparently the SFPD already had their own guy.  And at that moment he was in the kitchen, alphabetizing the pantry.

Someone on the police force, in San Francisco, and who seems to have OCD.....

It had to be Adrian Monk!

I was so expecting Tony Shahoub to poke his head around the corner for a quick cameo, but it was not to be.  But this suggestive mention was enough and we didn't need this final scene between four TV characters we Psych-Os have come to love to be overshadowed.  Dayenu.

Shawn Spencer and Adrian Monk have met before on several occasions, but always in the Promoverse thanks to a clever marketing campaign by the USA Network.  Now we have the "confirmation" that they share Earth Prime-Time as well.  (Confirmed enough for me at any rate.)

Toobworld goes on forever.  Even if the show is cancelled, those characters, like Monk before them, will live on in the City by the Bay.  And the same holds true for many other TV characters whom we once watched in San Francisco.

In what would be the never-seen season of 'Psych', they could have so many guest stars who had prior connections to San Francisco return to reprise those roles once again:
  • 'Christine Cromwell'
  • 'Amy Prentiss'
  • 'Nash Bridges'
  • Jack Killian, the 'Midnight Caller'
  • The Halliwell Sisters of 'Charmed'
  • The Salinger Siblings of 'Party Of Five'
  • The Rush Sisters from 'Too Close For Comfort'
  • 'Bert D'Angelo (Superstar)'
  • 'Dharma & Greg'
  • 'Eli Stone'
  • Sgt. Charlie Enright, who used to work with Commissioner 'McMillan & Wife'
  • 'Phyllis' Lindstrom
  • Quinn Mallory and the other 'Sliders'
  • Dan Vasser, the 'Journeyman'
  • The blended family members of 'Full House'
  • The guys from 'Dads'
As mentioned above, we could have Sgt. Enright (probably of a higher rank by now, if not retired), but not Stuart McMillan or his wife Sally.  Sally was killed off in the show while the death of Rock Hudson would prove a hindrance to having the commissioner return.

But that wouldn't stop the show from invoking their presence just as they did with Monk in the finale.  And that would hold true for so many other characters as well like Doctor "Trapper" John McIntyre and Chief Robert T. Ironside.  And old TV shows could be invoked by returning to the locations they once used, like the St. Gregory 'Hotel' and taking it as far back as pozz'ble, the Hotel Carlton which had been the base of operations for Paladin on 'Have Gun Will Travel'.

'Psych' won't be back and these are all just fantasies on my part.  But then, that's what the Toobworld Dynamic is: a fantasy....


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


Because of April Fool's Day, the April inductee into the Television Crossover Hall Of Fame is usually one of the clowns, buffoons, fools of Toobworld.  But in this year when we're celebrating the 15th anniversary of the TVXOHOF, we're taking a different route to showcase April:


'The Bold Ones - The Lawyers'
"Lisa, I Hardly Knew You"

'Mission: Impossible'
 "Old Man Out: Parts1 & 2"

'The Man From U.N.C.L.E.'
"The Moonglow Affair"

Law firm partners Walt Nicholls and Brian Darrell were arguing over strategies for the Walker case when younger partner Neil Darrell (Brian's brother) burst in to announce he was getting married.

The Walker case was never referred to again in the episode, but you (should) know me - I have this need to fill in the blanks.

So here's my theory......

The law firm of Nicholls, Darrell and Darrell were representing an acrobat named Crystal Walker.  Being an acrobat was not her only claim to fame, but it was the only one she could openly discuss.  

Crystal knew IMF team leader Dan Briggs and had worked with him in the past.  Briggs recruited her again, this time for a mission in the Balkans to help rescue an 80 year old priest from prison.  (He had been imprisoned because he was a symbol of freedom for the people in that dictatorship.)

Calling on her acrobatic skills, Crystal and the team set up a circus outside the prison walls to serve as a diversion.  The priest was spirited out of the prison under their protection and the country's leaders were left with egg on their face.

In one of the many unseen 'Mission: Impossible' adventures that are usually cooked up mostly by fanficcers, Crystal once again took on a project for the Impossible Mission Force.  The details are not known, but it took place in California.  

I don't want to stray too far into fan fiction, but I can make a theory about her earlier life and how she came to know Dan Briggs.....

In February of 1966, Crystal Walker had been recruited by United Network Command for Law Enforcement and given the code name of "April Dancer".  U.N.C.L.E. Section 1 Chief Alexander Waverly partnered her with an older agent named Mark Slate to be her mentor/trainer.  (As was the case with "April Dancer", "Mark Slate" was a code name and would be used by another agent once this one retired.) 

On her first assignment in the field, "April" was able to thwart plans by THRUSH to sabotage America's space program.  At the same time she and Mark were searching for the antidote to the effects caused by the THRUSH quartzite radiation projector.

On her next assignment, U.N.C.L.E. teamed up on a joint operation with the IMF and this is how "April Dancer" was introduced to Dan Briggs.  He's the one who probably convinced her to abandon her career with U.N.C.L.E. and go freelance until such time as he might need her for an impossible mission.

U.N.C.L.E. accepted her resignation, mostly due to the intervention of Briggs, and she went undercover as an acrobat.

Whatever the next mission was in which she was involved, this time something went wrong - Crystal ended up being arrested; Briggs and the rest of the IMF team he assembled had no choice but to leave her behind.

Nor could the government intervene on her behalf.  That was made clear with each mission on the assignment recordings from the higher-ups in the IMF: "As always, should you or any of your I.M. Force be caught or killed, the Secretary will disavow any knowledge of your actions."

At the time, the secretary would have been Secretary of State Dean Rusk.  Well, his televersion at any rate.

The best that Dan could do for her was to hire the law firm of Nicholls, Darrell, and Darrell and hope they could pull her loverly fat out of the fire.

And that's what Walt and Brian were arguing about.  Brian wanted to expose the government connection no matter how much Secretary Rusk's department denied any involvement.  Walt on the other hand wanted to find some other route to take so that they wouldn't become involved with government interference... or worse.

I think in the end, Walt Nicholls won out and then went on to win the case for Crystal Walker, using some little-known precedent or some legalese trickery.  The Toobworld Dynamic loves that kind of courtroom shenanigans.

Welcome to the TV Crossover Hall of Fame, Crystal Walker!


Tuesday, April 1, 2014


Today is also the birthday for one of my dearest friends, a fellow veteran of the UConn Drama Department, Thomaston Opera House, and the Windermere Chateau - Robin Douglas.  Her League of Themselves televersion appeared in a science program hosted by Alan Alda ('Scientific American Frontiers').  Her brother Rick is a member of the League of Themselves, thanks to hosting 'PM Magazine' (the Hartford, Ct., version).

And because I know one of her favorite classic TV shows is 'The Man From U.N.C.L.E.', I'm sending this out to her as a birthday greeting....




When Jeannie finally learned when her birthday was (April 1st), she threw a party for herself.  Among her guests were William Shakespeare, Sigmund Freud, Marie Antoinette, Henry VIII, Cleopatra, and Ben Franklin.  Leonardo da Vinci might have been there as well, since he designed the dress that Jeannie was wearing.

Jeannie told her Master, Major Tony Nelson, that all of her guests were friends of hers.  

But do you know the back-story for Jeannie?

Around 32 B.C., Jeannie was a young human girl in Baghdad who was obsessively loved by a powerful genie known as the Blue Djinn.  But when she spurned his advances, the Djinn was enraged and in anger he transformed Jeannie into a genie herself.  He locked her away in a bottle which was then tossed into the seas.  There Jeannie would remain for a thousand years until Tony found the bottle on a deserted island after his space mission.

So if she had been locked away for 2000 years, how could she have met all these famous people from different points along the Toobworld timeline.

The answer is a simple splainin: Time Travel.

We've seen Jeannie practice it in the past, like when she and Major Nelson met Captain Kidd.  So to go back to the late 1500's, the mid-1930s, perhaps to 1790, and at some point after 1752 and before 30 BC, in order to meet them all.  (With regards to Cleopatra, Jeannie may have gone back to renew her acquaintance with the Egyptian Queen since it's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, that they knew each other already back then.)

This also means that Jeannie used her magic to travel through Time other times which we never got to see on the screen.  

And that includes to a New York City nightclub back in the 1950s.  Maybe that trip was never seen in the TV show by the audience of the Trueniverse, but perhaps there is photographic evidence that it happened.......

I put it to you that Jeannie took Major Nelson back in Time to 1958 for a night at the Club Babaloo.  Why?  Maybe it was no longer in existence by the mid-1960s (sold as part of the Ricardos' divorce settlement, perhaps) and Tony happened to express a desire to have visited it before it closed down.  Always trying to please her Master, Jeannie took them back there in a blink of her eyes.

There they met the club's owner and his wife, Ricky and Lucy Ricardo.  As Jeannie's heart belonged to her Master, there was no way she would have lured Ricardo into a dalliance.  Nevertheless, Ricardo must have been enamored of her and kept her dance card full that night at Club Babalu.

And as we can see by this picture, that did not go over well with Ricky's wife, Lucy Ricardo.  Needless to say, Major Nelson probably wasn't too happy about it either......

A few years later, the Ricardos were divorced.  And this confrontation may have been the lit match that led to the break up of their marriage....



"I'm getting old and wrinkled!  
Do you realize every year I'm going to be a year older? 
If I had known that having a birthday was going to be like this, 
I would never have allowed you to find out when my real birthday is!"

No goofing around today; just an actual fact from the Toobworld timeline.

Jeannie Nelson was born on April First in 64 B.C.  

And as she expected, she did get old and wrinkled.  (But no less beautiful after all those years.)  Freed from her bottle, she was no longer being kept youthfully preserved.

Her "Master" and later her husband, Major Anthony Nelson, aged a lot faster than she did.  Plus, at some point after the series ended but before the 1985 TV reunion movie, Tony developed a serious health problem.  So that she wouldn't lost him, Jeannie "regenerated" him to full health.  


But as would happen with each Time Lord's regeneration, Tony was remade into a whole new man.  He still had Tony's memories, but there were some added personality quirks which he didn't display before.  Jeannie had to cast a binding glamour about him so that anybody who looked upon him would either see him in his original form or had their memories adjusted so that they thought he always looked like that.  (It was probably such a two-pronged spell based on who saw him.  If it was somebody who might have access to old photos or home movies or TV news footage, then the first aspect of the spell would be activated.  For the others, it would be the second aspect.)

Her twin, Jeannie II, also aged during the years as she continued plotting against her sister.  At some point after 1991, Jeannie was able to rid of herself of her troublesome twin by blinking Jeannie II into a parallel dimension.  (Evil Toobworld would be a nice fit for her.)  Something along these lines had to happen, because Jeannie II has not shown up since then to cause trouble for Jeannie nor for Toobworld overall.  


Meanwhile, Jeannie continues to be seen in Earth Prime-Time, looking the age she appears to be - as of this post, a beautiful 83 year old.


She may even be a grandmother by now, if Tony Nelson, Jr. has married and fathered children. (Then again, he could have done all that and be gay as well.  Not that there's anything wrong with that....)

During the 1960s, a TV series was made about her by UNReel in order to keep her identity and true nature a secret from the general public.  This was unbeknownst to Tony and Jeannie at the time but then the show didn't begin airing until after we no longer were able to see them on our TV screens.  Once that happened, the genie was out of the bottle, so to speak.  (There were no follow-up TV movies.)

Jeannie was played by an actress named Barbara Eden, whose televersion does not look like her true self from the Trueniverse.  (And she is far less talented than the original model!)  Luckily we get to see the real Barbara Eden in movies and on TV talk shows.  And as for the genie who looks so much like her?  The Trueniverse TV show of 'I Dream Of Jeannie', like all the TV shows we see, is a window into the "reality" of Earth Prime-Time.

So happy birthday, Jeannie Nelson!

'I Dream Of Jeannie'
"I Dream Of Jeannie - 15 Years Later"
"I Still Dream Of Jeannie"
'Wetten Das....?'
'American Dreams'
"Old Navy"



Most crossoverists and televisiologists became enthusiasts in their field due to their own experiences watching hours upon hours of TV.   I, on the other hand, was born over there in "Earth Prime-Time", only to find myself trapped here on Earth Prime.  Meanwhile the real Toby O'Brien - a mild-mannered auditor - was sent back in my place.  For a long time, I feared the worst - that my doppelganger had died at the hands of my enemies.  From my own perspective, the Truth was even worse....

In my secret identity, I was once feared by the criminal underworld in my home dimension, known to them as the Monitaur.  (In Earth Prime-Time, my police contact was Detective Munch - as it should have been for one such as myself dedicated to keeping the TV Universe cohesive.)  I used to be known as Big Top (aka Tobio the Clown) when I first started out - that was back when I had joined the Do-Gooders League.

(Me as Big Top, White Collar in between the Hammer Twins Sledge & Lillie,
Pink Lady, the Horse Doctor [By day a surgeon, by night a stallion!]
And in front: reformed cat burglar once known as Thatgirl, now Newgirl)

But that's an old tale, too oft repeated - how it all started when I was a citizen of Joyville, Connecticut; that I visited the Ranger Station as a child with my family; that I went to hockey games (where I once witnessed an act of manslaughter on the ice!); and shared vacation memories with David Letterman. 

Over here in the Real World, my counterpart was also known by another name, the Night Oddity.  But he had no super powers nor any heroic aspirations.  It was just a play on his job title of "Night Auditor." 

What might not be known would be my latest misadventure - that one disasterous trip with a Time Lord.  This happened back in January when I finally got the dream of a lifetime - I stowed away aboard a TARDIS... which proved to be a very costly and nearly fatal mistake.  

With the Doctor & with me

See, it wasn't the TARDIS stolen by the Gallifreyan known as the Doctor - whom I met through my former partner, Sandifer AKA Telepathic Cat.  (Close friends get to call him T.C., providing it's with dignity.)  Sandifer and the Doctor first met when the Time Lord picked him up in the wild, wild West and brought Sandifer forward to the dawn of the new Millennium.


Sandifer introduced me to the Doctor's Sixth Incarnation back when I still lived in Toobworld. But instead of calling for help from him, I hitched a lift with the Time and Relative Dimensions In Space vehicle used by the Doctor's foe, the Rani.

I should have known better.  I never did have any luck in crossing dimensions.  Not only was I sent packing to Earth Prime, but I once had trouble in BookWorld as well......

(To be found in "The Time Traveler's Handbook")

It wasn't a long trip - just a quick jaunt forward in Time to this coming July, and through the dimensional vortex to TV-NYC.  When I overheard that temporal tart talk about how she was going to travel across the dimensional vortex back to Toobworld, I knew I had to go along somehow.  I dearly wanted to return to Earth Prime-Time, so that I could once more say "Hi Honey, I'm Home!" to the family I left behind.....

Unfortunately, we landed in TV-NYC at the height of the second shark-infested maelstrom known as "Sharknado" and I was barely able to escape with my life.  I did however suffer some severe damage, but luckily the scientists of OSI were able to rebuild me with fully operational bionics before I returned to Earth Prime......


And sadly, I had to return to this mundane world.  I tried to go back to my own home just outside the City in Mockingbird Heights, but I found that the Toby O'B from the Trueniverse had made himself at home in my old life.  My 2.5 kids (Literally - don't ask.) and my occasional wife (We were separated at the time.) saw him as me.  He had even reconnected with my mistress! (Vicky is an old college friend who once worked as a Trans-Allied stewardess.)  


At least Tobias Prime is able to give them the fully functioning father they once had.  And one free of threats from such past enemies from the Crime-Time Syndicate as Flatscreen (my evil twin), Doctor Dramatization, Spinoff and Marty, Hi-Def Khan IV, Sea Span, Count Lafftrackula, Fox Noose, and the stripper assassin who calls herself Scrubbing Troubles.  

My mentor and conscience

And if they do, then I have allies left behind there who can watch out for them.  Strangely enough, I have found that they are nothing more than TV characters played over there by the actor friends of the original Toby - Shirley Jordan, Mary Cadorette, Dan Lauria, Fred Sanders, John O'Creagh, and Ray Amell (all of his "Atmosphere People" could be the same time traveler!)

A man of mystery who would sometimes magically appear
And offer me advice and aid during a crisis

Once I had my new bionics, I sought out the Rani.  She was still in Central Park where she first arrived; her TARDIS disguised as a statue of Mayor Randall Winston.  Even though I stowed away, I blamed her for my travails.  With revenge in my heart, I lashed out with my Monitaur powers (which don't seem to work on Earth Prime) and caused grievous injury.  It wasn't fatal, but bad enough to trigger another regeneration.  (You may have read about her "death" just the other day back here in the Real World, although she was mourned under an alias as a British actress.  I have no clue who she might resemble now....)


Even though Earth Prime-Time is the dimension of my birth, I was deported by the Sitcom Relocation Program back to Earth Prime.  That's the final indignity - that a former crime-fighter known as the Monitaur should be considered a sitcommie!

Oh well.....  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.  Maybe some day I'll tell you tales about Telepathic Cat and how he helped solve the murder of author Daphne Wallace but was too late to save a rare Shakespeare manuscript from fire.....



Monday, March 31, 2014


A good anniversary to "celebrate" - "23" is one of the numbers from 'Lost'.......

This 'L.A. Law' episode ranks in my Super Six list of the greatest deaths from Toobworld history.  I even invoke a reenactment in my Toobworld novel (caused by a serial killer using TV motifs.)




When Simon Templar landed at the airport in San Carlos, the capital city of the South American country of San Carlos (That's right - "La ciudad tan agradable lo nombró dos veces"!), he asked a taxi driver if he knew of the Crown & Heather.  When assured that he did, Templar got into the taxi.

But then we saw him pull up to the Crown & Heather (a Scottish pub run by an old friend) for the first time......

I've seen this thing happen before.  When Lt. Columbo was in London, he and Detective Chief Superintendent Dirk drove over to the estate of Sir Roger Haversham after the report of the theatrical producer's death.  But the car they arrived in was not the same car in which they left.

I suppose I could have come up with some wild TV splainin for the change in the cars; perhaps along the lines of Transformer televersions.  But I will invoke Occam's Razor instead.

During the trips for both Templar and Columbo, they had to stop and change cars.

For Simon Templar, the reason was simple: the taxi driver lied.  He had no idea where the Crown & Heather was located.  Once Simon realized this, he got out and hailed a different cab.

With Lt. Columbo, the first car supplied by New Scotland Yard broke down on its way out of town to the Haversham estate.  So a new vehicle was called for to take Dirk and his American visitor the rest of the way.

We didn't see these changes occur.  We didn't have to.  So many things we never see but we take it on faith that they happened.

Would you really want to see Archie Bunker taking a dump?  Bad enough we would hear him flush the toilet, which usually served as a punch-line rimshot.

So I think these are the simplest splainins for both TV shows.....

'Columbo' - "Dagger Of The Mind"


Sunday, March 30, 2014


Dame Judi Dench may not have shown up in this scene, or even heard on the other end of that phone call*, but it's still evidence that her televersion does exist in Earth Prime-Time.


* Fear not!  She will be phoning it in later in the show's first season.....