Saturday, March 3, 2018


A few days ago, this was posted in the Batman '66 Facebook page......

Brian Sapp:
Ok so we all know Batman 66 was designed to be campy. That being said name (Just ONE person) from the time period that would have made a very memorable villain. I have a list but at the top of that list stands the one and only Jackie Gleason.

There were a lot of great answers and this is the one I came up with:

Why not an ABC crossover for Sweeps Week? Bring back Carolyn Jones as Marsha, Queen of Diamonds, and have her try to team up with Endora from 'Bewitched'. Of course, I'm sure that William Asher and the production team of 'Bewitched' would insist that Endora would eventually join Batman and Robin... albeit reluctantly. (For good measure, have Carolyn Jones appear in a cameo as Morticia.)

I've been thinking about the idea since then and I want to flesh it out some more.

I still think that - evil as she is - Endora would not be a villainess towards Batman and Robin, even though Agnes Moorehead would have nailed it.  But as I stated, ABC and the 'Bewitched' producers would never have allowed it.  So we'd have to take a different bat-path.

Marsha's Aunt Hilda looked just like Aunt Enchantra from 'Bewitched', but only in one episode - "Witches And Warlocks Are My Favorite Things."  (Diana Chesney would later play Enchantra in the episode "Adam - Warlock or Washout."  The splainin?  Enchantra used her magic to alter her appearance, just as Samantha Stephens used a similar spell to change her husband Darrin's visage.  Sam also used the spell on Louise Tate and Gladys Kravitz as a practice test to make sure that it worked.)

I think there was a specific reason why Endora and her friends were so spiteful toward Darrin Stephens being a mortal married to a witch.  It was because they already had personal experience in what a mistake that could be.  


It's my theory that Enchantra was the mother of Hilda, and that Hilda's father was a mortal.  Her powers were not as strong as those of her mother and she made a lot of mistakes.  She was the aunt of Marsha, Queen of Diamonds, and I think that the family connection doesn't have Enchantra involved.  Her mortal lover left her and married a human woman instead.  Their son would have been Hilda's mortal half-brother and was the father of Marsha.  

So that's the way the plot would evolve - trying yet again to bring down the Dynamic Duo, Marsha and Aunt Hilda drew the ire of the Witches' Council.  Hilda's bumbling attempts at witchcraft had become a problem, especially since she looked just like her mother.  It would have caused problems for Enchantra the next time she materialized at some public event.

Acting as the ambassdor for the Witches' Council, Endora would have acted to remove them both as a threat against the lives of the Caped Crusader and the Boy Wonder.  It would have been just a cameo, with Agnes Moorehead stepping in as the deus ex machina to wrap up the crime spree of Marsha and Hilda.

Well....  Maybe it doesn't seem like much in that form, but I imagine a clever fanficcer might be able to flesh it out.  Any batficcers out there who might want to give it a try?


Friday, March 2, 2018


Let's take a look at a member of the League of Themselves taking her first step toward eventual induction into the Television Crossover Hall of Fame.

From Wikipedia:
Julianne Moore (born Julie Anne Smith; December 3, 1960) is an American actress, prolific in films since the early 1990s. She is particularly known for her portrayals of emotionally troubled women in both independent and Hollywood films, and has received many accolades, including the Academy Award for Best Actress.

After studying theatre at Boston University, Moore began her career with a series of television roles. From 1985 to 1988, she was a regular in the soap opera 'As the World Turns', earning a Daytime Emmy for her performance. Her film debut was in "Tales from the Darkside: The Movie" (1990), and she continued to play small roles for the next four years – including in the thriller "The Hand That Rocks the Cradle" (1992). Moore first received critical attention with Robert Altman's "Short Cuts" (1993), and successive performances in "Vanya" on 42nd Street (1994) and "Safe" (1995) continued this acclaim. Starring roles in the blockbusters "Nine Months" (1995) and "The Lost World: Jurassic Park" (1997) established her as a leading actress in Hollywood.

Moore received considerable recognition in the late 1990s and early 2000s, earning Oscar nominations for "Boogie Nights" (1997), "The End of the Affair" (1999), "Far from Heaven" (2002) and "The Hours" (2002). In the first of these she played a 1970s pornographic actress, while the other three featured her as an unhappy, mid-20th century housewife. She also had success with the films "The Big Lebowski" (1998), "Magnolia" (1999), "Hannibal" (2001), "Children of Men" (2006), "A Single Man" (2009), "The Kids Are All Right" (2010), and "Crazy, Stupid, Love" (2011), and won several awards for her portrayal of Sarah Palin in the television film "Game Change" (2012). The year 2014 was key for Moore, as she gave an Oscar-winning performance as an Alzheimer's patient in "Still Alice", was named Best Actress at the Cannes Film Festival for "Maps to the Stars", and joined the lucrative "Hunger Games" series.

In addition to acting, Moore has written a series of children's books about a character named "Freckleface Strawberry". She is married to director Bart Freundlich, with whom she has two children. 

Along with 'As The World Turns' and 'Game Change', she also had a recurring role on '30 Rock'.  But surprisingly for someone who is so recognizable with that red hair, I'm surprised Ms. Moore has not shown up in more TV shows as herself.  And as her star was ascending, there were plenty of shows in which her League of Themselves televersion would have fit right in - 'Entourage', 'Night Stand', 'Episodes', 'The Comeback', 'Extras', 'Muppets Tonight', and best of all,  'The Larry Sanders Show'.  Even after playing her character on '30 Rock', they could have brought her in as herself for an episode about mistaken identities.  I wonder if she was just too busy.  Or maybe no one thought to ask her.

But maybe that's all changing.


From IMDb:
Julianne Moore is shadowing Staci to prepare for a role in an indie film. Acting anything but natural, Staci goes on an awkward lunch date with Donny Deutsch. Todd consults Barbara Corcoran and Dr. Oz about donating his body fat to Jimmy for a cosmetic procedure.

This June 2017 episode serves as a great example for my vision of a TV Universe in considering celebrities playing themselves to be valid crossover potential as any fictional character.  These people "caught in the act of being themselves" are just as fictional as the characters with whom they interact.  They not only meet those fictional characters, but they travel to places which don't really exist (Fernwood, Ohio, for example), have sex with fictional characters (Mandy Moore, Ellen DeGeneres, Roseanne, Lou Diamond Phillips), and some aren't even human in Toobworld!  (Dennis Rodman is an alien and Willie Mays is a warlock.)

In this case, Julianne Moore was shot in the gut by a crossbow arrow, "thanks" to the studio's security guard!

Not exactly something that happened in the real world.

There aren't many options for real people to show up in TV shows nowadays - all those previously mentioned shows are gone now.  Maybe Ms. Moore could appear in a cameo as a spokesman for something similar to a MeToo campaign in a "ripped from the headlines" episode of 'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit'.

But if she is offered such a venue, I hope she goes for it.  She will only need two more appearances as herself in different shows to qualify for membership in the Television Crossover Hall of Fame.


Thursday, March 1, 2018


If I had to pick one private detective from TV to be the role model of the genre, it would have to be Joe Mannix.  Sure, one of the archetypes for the private eye - Philip Marlowe - has been well-represented in several dimensions of Toobworld, but first and foremost he is a citizen of BookWorld.  And as a Multiversal, he also can be found in the Cineverse as well as Toobworld.

But Joe Mannix is Toobworld's own.

From Wikipedia:

'Mannix' is an American television detective series that ran from 1967 to 1975 on CBS. Created by Richard Levinson and William Link and developed by executive producer Bruce Geller, the title character, Joe Mannix, is a private investigator. He is played by Mike Connors.

Joseph R. "Joe" Mannix is a regular guy, without pretense, who has a store of proverbs on which to rely in conversation. What demons he has mostly come from having fought in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, where he was initially listed as MIA while he was a prisoner of war in a brutal POW camp until he escaped.

Over the length of the series, a sizable percentage of his old Army comrades turn out to have homicidal impulses against him,as does his fellow running back from his college football days.  During the series, Mannix is also revealed to have worked as a mercenary in Latin America.  Like the actor who plays him, Mannix is of Armenian descent. He speaks fluent Armenian from time to time during the series, as well as conversational Spanish.

Mannix is notable for the high level of physical punishment he withstands. During the course of the series, he is shot and wounded over a dozen separate times, and knocked unconscious around 55 times. He frequently takes brutal beatings to the abdomen; some of these went on quite a long time, particularly by the television standards of the era. Whenever he gets into one of his convertibles, he can expect to be shot at or run off the road by another car or find his vehicle sabotaged. 

Nevertheless, he keeps his cool and perseveres until his antagonists are brought down. While making the television pilot "The Name is Mannix", Connors dislocated his shoulder running away from a "From Russia with Love"-type pursuit from a helicopter, and broke his left wrist punching a stuntman who happened to be wearing a steel plate on his back. 

Connors later expressed his concerns over what he saw as the show's dismissive attitude toward violence and its consequences, citing the example of Mannix being thrown down a flight of stairs and appearing without a scratch almost immediately after.

Starting in season two, Mannix lives at 17 Paseo Verde, West Los Angeles. Mannix grew up in a town called Summer Grove, where he was a star football and basketball player. Summer Grove had a thriving Armenian immigrant community. As of 1969, Mannix's mother had died 10 years earlier, and Mannix had not been back to the town since the funeral. Mannix's estranged father, Stefan, was still living in Summer Grove, and Mannix and his father would start a reconciliation. When Mannix returns to Summer Grove for a case three years later, his father and he are on good terms.

Following military service in the Korean War, Mannix attended Western Pacific University on the GI Bill, graduated in 1955, and obtained his private investigator's license in 1956. He is a black belt in karate. Throughout the series, he appears proficient in a variety of athletic pursuits, including sailing, horseback riding, and skiing. He is an accomplished pool player, golfs regularly, and is also a skilled airplane pilot. In the first season, he carries a Walther PP semiautomatic pistol. From the second season on, Mannix carries a Colt Detective Special snubnosed revolver in .38 Special caliber.

During the first season of the series, Joe Mannix works for a large Los Angeles detective agency called Intertect, which was the planned original title of the show.  His superior is Lew Wickersham, played by Joseph Campanella, with the agency featuring the use of computers to help solve crimes. As opposed to the other employees who must wear dark suits and sit in rows of desks with only one piece of paper allowed to be on their desks at one time, Mannix belongs to the classic American detective archetype, thus he usually ignores the computers' solutions, disobeys his boss's orders, and sets out to do things his own way. He wears plaid sport coats and has his own office that he keeps sloppy between his assignments. Lew has cameras in all the rooms of Intertect monitoring the performance of his employees and providing instant feedback through intercoms in the room. Unlike the other Intertect operatives, Mannix attempts to block the camera with a coat rack and insults Lew, comparing him to Big Brother.

To improve the ratings of the show, Desilu head Lucille Ball and producer Bruce Geller made some changes, making the show similar to other private-eye shows. Ball thought the computers were too high-tech and beyond the comprehension of the average viewer of the time and had them removed.

From the second season on, Mannix works on his own with the assistance of his loyal secretary Peggy Fair, a police officer's widow played by Gail Fisher – one of the first African American actresses to have a regular series role. He also receives help from the Los Angeles police department, the two most prominent officers being Lieutenant Art Malcolm (portrayed by Ward Wood) and Lieutenant Adam Tobias (portrayed by Robert Reed). Other police contacts are Lieutenant George Kramer (Larry Linville), who had been the partner of Peggy's late husband,[3] and Lieutenant Dan Ives (Jack Ging).

In 1971, Connors guest-starred on an episode of 'Here's Lucy' entitled "Lucy and Mannix are Held Hostage".

In 1997, Connors reprised the role of Mannix on an episode of 'Diagnosis: Murder' entitled "Hard-Boiled Murder", which serves as a sequel to the Mannix episode "Little Girl Lost".

So there you are - they may have only been guest appearances lasting only one episode each, but that's all that was needed to fulfill the requirements for membership in the Crossover Hall of Fame.

It's just a shame that CBS didn't capitalize on the popularity of 'Mannix' by crossing the character over to other TV series in their line-up, especially with other private eyes, 'Barnaby Jones' and Frank 'Cannon'.  But as seen by his guest shot in an episode of 'Here's Lucy' (working with the boss, basically), Mannix was the type of character who could be featured in a sitcom and not be spoofed like those other two (Barnaby being old and Cannon fat).

But there were other missed opportunities.....

1] Let's begin with the creators of the show, Richard Levinson and William Link.  They're probably best known today as the creators of 'Columbo' and they would go on from there to create Jessica Fletcher of 'Murder, She Wrote'.  But imagine if they wanted to get a back-door pilot for ''Columbo' by presenting the rumpled detective in an episode of 'Mannix'.  It would certainly be a different show than what we're familiar with today.  First off, if sold, it would have been a CBS show and have that patina that marked their dramas.  The actor playing the Lieutenant would have been different as well.  Early in the talent search, they were looking for someone more along the lines of Thomas Mitchell or Pat O'Brien.  They might have landed Bing Crosby, their original TV target, if he thought it was just going to be that one episode of 'Mannix'.  So it's a good thing it never happened.

But that doesn't mean Mannix never got the chance to work with the Lieutenant.  He worked with a lot of LAPD Lieutenants; we just never got to see him with Columbo.  Or, as this publicity picture would suggest, maybe they were friends outside of the trade.

2] Remember those private eye awards ceremonies where Jim Rockford would meet up with Lance White, Vern St Cloud, Beamer, and Marcus "Gabby" Hayes?  Mannix could have been at one of those.  Even better?  Mannix and Rockford could have met each other during the Korean War.

3] As you can see from the two examples above, publicity pictures are a good starting point to launch fanfic, and here's another: The Impossible Mission Force often brought in outside help on particular cases.  It could be that Joe Mannix crossed Jim Phelps' radar, especially while he was working with Intertect.  And that could be the basis for whatever happened while Mannix was working as a mercenary in Latin America.

4] One of Mannix's contacts on the LAPD was Lt. Adam Tobias and it seems apparent that Tobias was an "Identical Cousin" to an architect named Mike Brady.  This theoretical crossover is more for building the case for Mike Brady's membership than just to add more possibilities to Mannix's tally.  There were several cases in which Mannix was inside a house designed by Mike Brady, based on the same plans he used for the building of his own home.  

The episodes were:

  • "One For The Lady"
  • "The Danford File"
  • "The Ragged Edge"

As I said, I'm not saying Mannix ever dealt with Mike Brady himself; just that he was in houses designed by that architect.


And if he met Cannon, it's pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, that Mannix also met 'Barnaby Jones'.....

But those are just suppositions, good for fanfic but not really admissable for membership in the Hall of Fame unless this was going to be a Birthday Honors entry.  But since Joe Mannix already has those other requirements fulfilled, he can walk into the Hall with his heavily bruised head held high.

Welcome to the TVXOHOF, Joe.  And good night and may God bless Mike Connors.....

  • 'Mannix'
  • 'Here's Lucy'
  • 'Diagnosis Murder'
  • 'Mission Impossible'
  • 'The Brady Bunch'
  • 'Columbo'
  • 'The Rockford Files'
  • 'Cannon'
  • 'Barnaby Jones'

Wednesday, February 28, 2018


We're ending the month-long Inner Toob salute to Black History with a profile of a future member of the Television Crossover Hall of Fame.....

From Wikipedia:
Roosevelt Grier (born July 14, 1932) is an American actor, singer, Protestant minister, and former professional American football player. He was a notable college football player for The Pennsylvania State University who earned a retrospective place in the National Collegiate Athletic Association 100th anniversary list of 100 most influential student athletes. As a professional player, Grier was a member of the New York Giants and the original Fearsome Foursome of the Los Angeles Rams. He played in the Pro Bowl twice.

After Grier's professional sports career, he worked as a bodyguard for Robert Kennedy during the 1968 presidential campaign and was guarding the senator's wife, Ethel Kennedy, during the Robert F. Kennedy assassination. Although unable to prevent that killing, Grier took control of the gun and subdued the shooter, Sirhan Sirhan.

Grier's other activities have been colorful and varied. He hosted his own Los Angeles television show and made approximately 70 guest appearances on various shows during the 1960s and 1970s.

As a singer, Grier first released singles on the A label in 1960, and over the following twenty-five years he continued to record on various labels including Liberty, Ric, MGM, and A&M. His recording of a tribute to Robert Kennedy, "People Make the World" (written by Bobby Womack), was his only chart single, peaking at No. 128 in 1968.

Grier is known for his serious pursuit of hobbies not traditionally associated with men. He has authored several books, including "Rosey Grier's Needlepoint for Men" in 1973. Grier became an ordained Protestant minister in 1983 and travels as an inspirational speaker. He founded American Neighborhood Enterprises, a nonprofit organization that serves inner city youth. 

For more about Rosey Grier, click here.

Praise the Lord 

Chico and the Man
- Black Tie Blues
Della asks Ed to be her date at a black tie charity dinner, at $100 a plate.  Football star Rosey Grier as himself, Della's date for a charity benefit dance 

The White Shadow
- If Your Number's Up, Get It Down

Reeves is asked to use his former-NBA-player connections to raise funds for a mobile care unit to treat patients with high blood pressure. As punishment for wrecking the driver's ed car, he makes the team do the collecting. However, they decide to publicize that Reeves is dead to entice celebrities to attend the benefit and contribute.

- Georgia on My Mind (1980)
Coolidge's ego grows regarding his basketball skills, ignoring academics and planning a pro career. Buchanan and Reeves warn him with Reeves arranging an introduction that teaches Coolidge a valuable lesson. 

Quincy M.E.
- Accomplice to Murder

A teenager with a record is accused of murdering an elderly man. The teen happened to belong to a group run by Quincy's friend, former pro-football great Rosie Grier. Rosie asks Quincy not only to help clear the teen, but to help save the organization he runs, Giant Step, which helps to bring teens and the elderly together. 

The Larry Sanders Show
- I Buried Sid

Hank blames himself for the recent suicide of Larry's cue card man, Sid, because of some hurtful things he said after a rehearsal. Larry tries to keep his relationship with guest, Laura Dern, a secret from the staff and his audience.

(Rosey comforted Hank Kingsley in his grief and then led the gathered mourners in prayer.)

And in the Tooniverse....

The Simpsons 
- Sunday, Cruddy Sunday
 (1999)Homer and his friends head to the Superbowl, but are forced to sneak in when they discover their tickets are counterfeit.

Homer and his friends go to the Super Bowl but,when their tickets turn out to be fake,they get thrown into jail. Fortunately they are freed by Dolly Parton and make their way to a director's box but this is owned by the 'billionaire tyrant' Rupert Murdoch,who orders the visitors' arrest. After being chased onto the pitch,Homer and his friends cause considerable confusion which ends with Homer in possession of the Vince Lombardi trophy. 
Written by don @ minifie-1

Mr. Grier is not yet on the schedule for induction but I think February of 2020 would be good.  I hope there won't be a need to get to it before then.

I hope you enjoyed all of the posts this month which celebrated Black History Month.  Because of other subjects that needed to be addressed I think I only missed two opportunities for this salute.


Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Monday, February 26, 2018


My favorite black TV character from this past year:

Sunday, February 25, 2018


From Wikipedia:
Lena Mary Calhoun Horne (June 30, 1917 – May 9, 2010) was an African American jazz and pop music singer, dancer, actress, and civil rights activist. Horne's career spanned over 70 years appearing in film, television, and theater. Horne joined the chorus of the Cotton Club at the age of 16 and became a nightclub performer before moving to Hollywood, where she had small parts in numerous movies, and more substantial parts in the 1943 films "Cabin in the Sky" and "Stormy Weather". Because of the Red Scare and her political activism, Horne found herself blacklisted and unable to get work in Hollywood.

Returning to her roots as a nightclub performer, Horne took part in the March on Washington in August 1963 and continued to work as a performer, both in nightclubs and on television while releasing well-received record albums. She announced her retirement in March 1980, but the next year starred in a one-woman show, "Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music", which ran for more than three hundred performances on Broadway. She then toured the country in the show, earning numerous awards and accolades. Horne continued recording and performing sporadically into the 1990s, disappearing from the public eye in 2000. Horne died of congestive heart failure on May 9, 2010, at the age of 92.