Saturday, December 2, 2017


There are several Toobworlds out there in the Multiverse of the TV Universe which are defined by the language spoken by EVERYONE in that world.  Spanish Toobworld - everybody speaks Spanish; German Toobworld? German.  And it's parle français for French Toobworld.
Those TV shows produced in other countries are automatically included in the makeup of those Toobworlds. It's a given. But that doesn't mean they couldn't exist in the main Toobworld, Earth Prime-Time. I want Toobworld to acknowledge that you can't spell "Toobworld" without the "world". French shows like 'Commissioner Magellan' and 'Mongeville' belong in the main Toobworld just as much as 'Mannix' and 'Magnum P.I.'.

But the reason for these extra TV dimensions is because of the English-based TV shows which have been dubbed into the native languages. If you look around YouTube, you should be able to find 'Hondo' in Portuguese. So the life of Hondo Layne played out the same in that dimension, only this time he spoke Portuguese and not English.

How did the Portuguese come to dominate the entire world? Not my concern; just is.

But you have to know how far back the takeover of the world actually took place. With French Toobworld, I think it can be pinpointed to the success of the Cardinal Richelieu in that world to make France the dominant world power.

In Russian Toobworld, the entire world speaking Russian didn't grow out of the Cold War. It's much older than that. In that world, Russia controlled England before Stanford introduced Dr. James Watson to Sherlock Holmes. (I'm told the Russian TV series about Holmes and Watson is one of the best presentations of the Baker Street partnership.) Around that same time, Holmes' fellow member of the Wold Newton Universe was also seen in Russian Toobworld. And we have the proof of this as our presentation for today......

Igra prodolzhayetsya!

Friday, December 1, 2017


Our last monthly induction into the Television Crossover Hall of Fame for the year; we still have the Christmas Honors list, but hopefully no more surprise inductions for the rest of the month.....

As this was a memorial year theme, paying tribute to a few actors who passed away in the last few years by inducting their Hall-worthy characters, there were several TV characters whom I just couldn't induct without their most famous partners.  Whether team-mates on the job or in their personal lives, it was unthinkable that I should hold off even if the other actor yet lived.

The examples this year were:

  • Napoleon Solo & Illya Kuryakin
  • Laura & Rob Petrie
  • Officers Malloy & Reed
And Grizzly Adams' gentle friend Ben (NOT 'Gentle Ben'!) was inducted with him, and when it came to honoring Van Williams, I can't see bringing in Kenny Madison without acknowledging his most famous character, Britt Reid (better known as the Green Hornet.)

In the case of Ben the bear, he had passed away first, but long before I had started the TVXOHOF.  And that's the situation we have with this month's inductee.  One of the duo had passed away years before, so there was no need to put a rush order on that induction.  But now....

Here are a few Wikipedia selections:

Thomas played Danny Williams, a successful comedian and nightclub entertainer at the Copa Club. Jean Hagen played his serious and loving wife Margaret, Sherry Jackson their daughter Terry, and Rusty Hamer their son Rusty. The show's premise dealt with Danny rarely having time to spend with his family and Margaret dealing with the children on her own. Margaret often felt neglected by her husband, and on several occasions felt like leaving him. Margaret was a society woman and strict with the children, but loved her family. Louise Beavers made several appearances during this era as the Williams' maid, Louise Evans, and often found herself at odds with Danny and sided with Margaret in most fights between the couple. 

For its first three years, Make Room For Daddy garnered decent ratings, but failed to make the list of the top-30 programs. Shortly after the third season finished filming, Jean Hagen left the show due to dissatisfaction with her role and frequent clashes with Danny Thomas. Thomas was upset with her for leaving, as he felt the show would not last without her, but he decided to push on without Hagen.  

Both Thomas and producer Sheldon Leonard were faced with a serious dilemma - how to explain Jean Hagen's absence on the show. To have Danny and Margaret Williams separate and divorce would have been unacceptable to television audiences at that time. So, it was explained that Margaret had died suddenly off-screen. It was a risky move. Until this time, no character on a situation comedy had died. Danny was now a widower juggling a performing career while raising two children on his own. Danny had Louise and his friends often looking after the children while he was still touring. He decided to move them to a boarding school, but later relented and the family moved into a new apartment. 

During the season, Danny dated a few other women and nearly got engaged to a widowed singer until he found out she did not like children. By season's end, the ratings had suffered and it was decided that a wife and mother was needed to complete the family unit. In a four-part story arc that began airing in April, 1957, Rusty fell ill with the measles and Danny hired Kathy O'Hara (Marjorie Lord), a young Irish nurse, to look after him. Kathy was a widow with a little girl (played by Lelani Sorenson). Danny and Kathy became fast friends and Danny fell in love with her very quickly, as did the kids. In the season finale, Kathy proposed to Danny (as Danny was too nervous to do so himself) and the two became engaged. 

At this time, ABC cancelled the series, which proved to be fortunate. In the spring of 1957, I Love Lucy, which had reigned as the top-rated show for almost all of its six-year run on CBS, was ending production. When CBS heard that ABC was cancelling The Danny Thomas Show, they picked it up for their fall season line-up, adding it to the 1957-1958 schedule.

"Make Room for Daddy" 
Danny: 344 episodes (1953-1964)
Kathy: 224 episodes (1957-1964)

"The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour" 
    - Lucy Makes Room for Danny (1958)

"The Joey Bishop Show" 

    - This Is Your Life (1961) 

Commercials for Post Cereals

Danny Thomas Reunion Special (1965) 

"The Danny Thomas Hour" 
    - Make More Room for Daddy (1967)

"Make Room for Granddaddy"
24 episodes

As mentioned above, Danny and Kathy appeared in several blipverts for the show's sponsor, Post Cereals.  In at least one Uncle Tonoose also appeared and there was one which featured only Rusty and Linda.  So those would be added to their tallies for entry.  (Uncle Tonoose got in earlier this year on the occasion of his centenary and Rusty was inducted several years earlier.  Someday Linda will join the family and maybe Terry will as well.  We'll see, considering her character's history behind the scenes.)

Here are some of those blipverts:

It wasn't just that Danny and Kathy made crossovers on their own, but they invited other members of the Hall of Fame into their home - Buddy Sorrell, Jack Carter, Milton Berle, Bob Hope, Dinah Shore, and of course Lucy & Ricky Ricardo. 

And a couple of times they met up with other Hall of Famers on the road - Jack Benny in Las Vegas and on a different vacation, they introduced the world to Sheriff Andy Taylor and his son Opie in the first view of Mayberry.  

(There were some alterations to the look of the jailhouse as well as to some of the townfolk, but that can be laid at the feet of a woman who will be inducted into the Television Crossover Hall Of Fame during the 20th anniversary year of 2019.

And so we make room for Danny and Kathy Williams to the Hall of Fame.  Welcome!


Thursday, November 30, 2017




Jerry Hearndan was a movie star in the 1930s who appeared in several movies with Barbara Jean Trenton.  Barbara Jean's career had faded as she wallowed in the memories of the past.  So her agent Danny Weeks thought it might spark her vitality to reunite her with one of her former co-stars.  She was excited for the chance to meet Jerry Hearndan again, but she was expecting to have a reunion with the matinee idol of yore, not with the elderly man who showed up to her door.

Barbara Jean Trenton & Jerry Hearndan
in their early Hollywood glory

"Jerry Hearndan" was not his birth name, but a name he had taken upon advice from the studio where he made his movies.  (To keep Toobworld tidy, I'm going to say it was Mammoth Studios who produced those pictures.) 

He was born Thierry Roussel to French immigrants.  He had a brother who also had an artistic streak - Anton Roussel, who made a name for himself as a symphony conductor.  Roussel was the mentor of Alex Benedict, and had been the conductor of the Southern Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra in Los Angeles (which had been Lizzy Fielding's "baby") before he retired.  (There had been rumours that he had once been the lover of Mrs. Fielding and that he might even have been the father of her daughter Janice Benedict.  You might think that, I couldn't possibly comment.)

Jerry Hearndan wasn't like Barbara Jean Trenton.  He had accepted the advance of age and even though he could have continued as an actor in character roles on television, instead he had retired and was now the manager of a chain of grocery stores.  

I don't know if Hearndan and Roussel were identical twins or just closely resembling each other.

Also cited in this post:
'Columbo' - "Etude In Black"


Wednesday, November 29, 2017


Now I'm hungry.......

Rob Buckley, the major domo behind Great Britain's 4th most popular TV blog, "The Medium Is Not Enough" (You'll find the link to the left), brought this to my attention.....

Following the success of a previous crossover last year, 'Mongeville' and 'Commissaire Magellan', two of the star sleuths of French pubcaster France 3, will reunite again.


(France 3):

The crossover is a "rare bird" in the History of French television fiction: the sitcoms produced for TF1 by AB Productions in the 1990s, an encounter between crime drama PJ (1997-2009) and legal drama Avocats et Associés (1998-2010) on France 2 in 2007, and then nothing until now.

Created by Laurent Mondy, 'Commissaire Magellan' started on France 3 in 2009. Produced by JLA Productions and set in the fictional town of Saignac (in the north of France), it stars Jacques Spiesser as Commissaire Simon Magellan.

Launched in 2013, 'Mongeville' is a production from Son & Lumière created by Jacques Santamaria and starring Francis Perrin as Antoine Mongeville. Mongeville is an ex-"juge d'instruction" who regularly assists police captain Valentine Duteil (played by Gaëlle Bona) in Bordeaux. 

'Magellan' and 'Mongeville' are part of the popular French detective/crime drama line-up of France 3. They are very well done, like this most pleasant crossover where Magellan investigates a deadly hit-and-run whose suspect happens to be a former protégé of Mongeville.

Antoine Mongeville is a law school pal of Simon Magellan but they lost touch a long time ago. Mongeville and Valentine, on their way to London, are not far from Saignac and they team up with Simon. Never mind the far-fetched solution, this "reunion" is brought smartly, the characters have a good chemistry and great fun together. The actors look like they enjoyed the experience. Written by Céline Guyot & Martin Guyot. Directed by Étienne Dhaene.
- Thierry Attard

From Wikipedia:
'Commissioner Magellan' is a French crime television series created by Laurent Mondy and broadcast since November 28, 2009 on France 3 .

The series features the investigations of a Province Commissioner in the imaginary city of Saignac. Assisted by his assistant, Commissioner Magellan will have to scratch under the varnish of a provincial society too often in love with appearances.

From Wikipedia:
'Mongeville' is a French crime series produced by the production company Son & Lumière , created by Jacques Santamaria , and broadcast since April 13 , 2013 on France 3.

A retired investigating judge but a thoroughgoing bloodhound, Antoine Mongeville interferes with the mysterious investigations of his young protégé, Valentine Duteil, captain of the judicial police of Bordeaux. 

Here's a look at the first crossover....

From Wikipedia:
Episode crossover: 
"Magellan and Mongeville"

Director: Étienne Dhaene
Scenario: Céline Guyvot and Martin Guyvot
Date of first airing: November 19, 2016

Magellan investigates the murder of Sabine, a young woman killed by a driver while she went out with a friend (Laurène). The alleged driver calls on Mongeville, a judge who has long taken care of him and incidentally is a former comrade of Magellan at the law school of Lille . The investigation will show that the links between the wise Laurène and the festive Sabine are narrower than they seem.

This crossover between 'Mongeville' and 'Commissioner Magellan', two police series of the same channel, brings together Francis Perrin and Jacques Spiesser , who had not played together since the film "The Slap" (1974) and "Simple As Pleasure" (1975).

I don't know if I can track down those crossovers, but I'd actually like to watch both series (subtitles included, of course!)  I've always enjoyed foreign detective shows and when MHz was free over the air, I watched a lot of them.  

And Toobworld gains another location on the map - Saignac in the north of France.  Perhaps the televersions of my friends Gene and Ivy visited there during several vacations.  When my friend Rachel was living in Paris, perhaps her televersion traveled there as well.

I just may have to track down these series on DVD.  I'd love to subscribe to MHz (and Acorn as well), but I have reached my limit on premium channels.

Thank you, Rob!  And thank you, Thierry for the information.


Tuesday, November 28, 2017


"The last I looked, there was a farm report and a rerun of 'Circus Boy'."
Brooke Collins


Miss Collins was talking about Hangston, Nevada's TV programming.  And a farm report and the televersion of an actual TV show were offered as proof that the local TV schedule was indeed a vast landscape.

The mention of 'Circus Boy', which was a real TV show in our world, is not a Zonk. 

From Wikipedia:
Circus Boy is an American action/adventure/drama series that aired in prime time on NBC, and then on ABC, from 1956 to 1958. It was then rerun by NBC on Saturday mornings, from 1958 to 1960.

Set in the late 1890s, the title of the series refers to a boy named Corky. After his parents, "The Flying Falcons," were killed in a trapeze accident, young Corky (Micky Dolenz – billed at the time as Mickey Braddock) was adopted by Joey the Clown (Noah Beery, Jr.), and the whole Burke and Walsh Circus family.

The young boy quickly found a role with the circus as water boy to Bimbo, a baby elephant whom Corky would come to consider his pet. Riding Bimbo's back, Corky dealt with adolescent problems, and helped the show's adults including Joey, owner/promoter Big Tim Champion (Robert Lowery). and head canvasman Pete (Guinn Williams), keep the circus successful as the traveling show moved from town to town each week.

Corky and Joey the Clown and all the other members of the Burke and Walsh Circus were all historical figures whose lives were given the small screen. treatment.  So the TV show 'Circus Boy' was about the real life of Corky.  What we see however, is the real-life story of the Burke and Walsh Circus.  But what people in Toobworld would see if they watched 'Circus Boy' on TV would be totally different in look, perhaps even in style, from what we've seen.

Everybody knows who starred in that televersion of 'Circus Boy', right?  Corky was played by Mickey Braddock.  But he gained worldwide popularity as a member of the Monkees under the name of Mickey Dolenz.  And this was true even in Toobworld, where Mickey Dolenz has a televersion.  And who confirmed that in Toobworld?  Mickey Dolenz again.


'Hey, I haven't been to a circus since I was a kid, man."
Mickey Dolenz

And that circus was the fictional one which was put together for the TV show in which he starred.

So in case I got you confused - it's not you, it's me - let me sum up:

People in Toobworld watch a recreation of the events surrounding Corky the Circus boy's life.

People in the Real World watch that actual life.


Monday, November 27, 2017


From NBC News:
LONDON — One of the world’s most eligible bachelors is officially off the market.

Britain’s Prince Harry is engaged to American actress Meghan Markle, royal officials announced Monday.

The wedding will take place in the spring. The venue was not immediately revealed but a statement said more details would be announced "in due course."

This bit of social puffery about an anitquated monarchy is still news of some impact for Earth Prime-Time.  Meghan Markle has inabited Toobworld with quite a few characters in her relatively short career.*

In the fictional realms created by the gestalt of Mankind's imagination, we probably haven't seen anything like this since the 1950s, when newsreel footage of Grace Kelly as she became the Princess of Monaco shared the Cineverse with the characters she played in the movies like Margo Wendice ("Dial M For Murder"), Lisa Carol Fremont ("Rear Window"), Tracy Lord ("High Society"), Frances Stevens ("To Catch A Thief"), and her Oscar-winning turn as Georgie Elgin in "The Country Girl".  (Of course in the Cineverse, Amy Fowler Kane of "High Noon" died many decades before.)  And Miss Kelly also contributed many Toobworld characters as well with roles in quite a few anthology series of the 1950s.

The characters played by Ms. Markle are distributed throughout the greater TV Universe, with one of them in the "near future". (It could be that her character of Natasha in 'Century City' isn't even born yet!)  
Her various TV movies could be found in Earth Prime-Time, but sometimes it's better to just send such one-offs to Motwan Toobworld, the TV Terra of the "Movies Of The Week.

With her guest star role in an episode of 'Castle', Ms. Markle has representation in the 'West Wing' dimension.  However, I'm not sure still that the Royal Family is the same one as in the Real World and in Toobworld.  Their Queen Elizabeth might be the same regent to be found in an episode of the second incarnation of 'The Human Target'.

The one character played by Ms. Markle who will have the biggest impact of all the Toobworld women who look like the future wife of Prince Harry will be Rachel Zane of 'Suits'.  With 103 episodes to her credit, Rachel Zane will be the character most likely to cause confusion in the post-cancellation "after-llife" of Toobworld should be mistaken for the future Royal.  (That is if she survived the series; I don't follow 'Suits'.  Her character may perish by the time it's run its course.  So you might think that; I couldn't possibly comment.....

One note of interest among her roles in Toobworld, Ms. Markle played a woman who was also named Meghan in a first-season episode of 'The League'.  No last name was given, so it's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, that she was actually playing her own televersion in that episode.  Perhaps one day I could use that in combination of any other appearances she makes as herself in TV sitcoms, dramas, or in prime time soaps as her future father-in-law did when he stepped into the Rover's Return Inn on the corner of 'Coronation Street' for a quaff.  (Her future mother-in-law got behind the bar to pull a pint, but that could have been just for publicity's sake and the televised footage on the news probably belongs in the "Behind The Scenes" TV dimension of Toobworld-Toobworld.)

At any rate, I wish them both well and I trust her acting career gave Ms. Markle some preparation for what she's about to go through.


Markle's first role as Jill in an episode of 'General Hospital' was in 2002, so she was acting on TV for fifteen years.  (Not sure yet if the IMDb is correct that an episode of 'Suits' in which she appeared will still be televised in 2018.)

Sunday, November 26, 2017