Saturday, August 31, 2019


I gave up regular posting on the weekends for Inner Toob a while ago; your old Curator needs some time off.  But as the last day of August was falling on a Saturday, with of course the first of September on Sunday, I felt I needed to deal with both of them.  Particularly with today being the last day of the annual tradition of the TV Western showcase.

So let me close out the month with this wonderful picture of Jack Kelly as Bart Maverick.  Bart is a member of the Television Crossover Hall of Fame, inducted even before his older brother Bret.

This was originally in black and white, but it was brilliantly and lovingly colorized by my FB friend Sharon Viljoen, one of the two leading experts in Bartology.  (Linda Alexander being the other.  Hi Linda!)
Sharon posted this picture with a note that it is not from any particular ‘Maverick’ episode and in fact, Mr. Kelly never even wore the outfit in any of the episodes of the show.  It's a publicity picture!
So this could serve as inspiration for any TV Western fanficcers out there who want to write about Bret Maverick’s baby brother.  
He’s obviously (to me, at least) on board a riverboat – perhaps the Cynthia B? – and looks rather pleased with Life.  Maybe he’s just concluded a very profitable turn at the tables.
A good fanficcer will probably find a way to leave him on his uppers soon enough!
If you’re so inclined to write about such a situation, have at it!
I hope you enjoyed this month of TV Western posts.  Every year I surprise myself that I find something new to write about, considering the genre has faded from the heights of popularity it once held.  But while it was at the top, there were so many series which I haven’t even covered yet.  And then there’s that sub-plot in “Once Upon A Time In Hollywood” which dealt with ‘Lancer’….  I never even got a chance to cover that!  Oh well, there’s always next year… I hope!
Thanks for checking in, Y’all.
Happy Trails!

Friday, August 30, 2019


And now for something completely different - we're inducting into the Television Crossover Hall of Fame a TV character's genetic makeup.

From Wikipedia:
Lawrence Samuel Storch (born January 8, 1923) is an American actor, voice actor, and comedian, best known for his comic television roles, including voice-over work for cartoon shows, such as Mr. Whoopee on ‘Tennessee Tuxedo and His Tales’, and his live-action role of the bumbling Corporal Randolph Agarn on ‘F Troop’.  

His most famous role was the scheming Corporal Randolph Agarn on the situation comedy ‘F Troop’ (1965–1967), with Forrest Tucker, Ken Berry and Melody Patterson.

Corporal Randolph Agarn (Larry Storch) – Randolph Agarn is O'Rourke's somewhat dimwitted sidekick and business partner in the shady O'Rourke Enterprises (his name is a play on both Randolph Scott and John Agar who were cowboy stars).

The character Agarn, originally from Passaic, New Jersey, took six years after enlistment to become a lowly corporal. At the time of the series, Agarn has been in the cavalry for 10 years, and has been posted to Fort Courage for the last four, apparently spending the Civil War years at Fort Courage.

He has impersonated Generals George Washington and Ulysses Grant. However, in dual roles, Storch played numerous lookalike relatives of Agarn, including his French-Canadian cousin Lucky Pierre, his Russian cousin Dmitri Agarnoff and his Mexican bandito cousin Pancho Agarnado, known as "El Diablo." (In the same episode he also played Granny Agarn, Uncle Gaylord Agarn of Tallahassee and Pancho's sister Carmen Agarnado). 

Confrontational and often overly-emotional in every respect, Agarn frequently collapses in tears with the phrases "Oh, Cap'n!" or "Oh, Sarge!" (depending on whose chest he buries his head in). To get the men to attention, he barks out his trademark loud and exaggerated (but unintelligible) "Aaaaa-aaahh" command.

Whenever he becomes frustrated by something one of the troopers does wrong (which is often), short-tempered Agarn hits him with his hat which, unlike everyone else's, is white. A hypochondriac, Agarn thinks he's contracted the illnesses he reads or hears about or which others around him have (including a horse).

One running gag during the second season involves Agarn's delayed reactions, which usually ran: Agarn would make a suggestion; O'Rourke would respond: "Agarn, I don't know why everyone says you're so dumb!" At the beginning of the next scene (which could be several hours or days after the original comment), Agarn, suddenly indignant, demands: "Who says I'm dumb?"

Agarn was briefly promoted to Sergeant in the episode "Lieutenant O'Rourke, Front and Center". Larry Storch was nominated for an Emmy Award for "Outstanding performance by an actor in a leading role in a comedy series" in 1967.

To be a member of the Television Crossover Hall of Fame, a TV character has to connect three different series.  In the beginning, that meant strictly three actual appearances in those shows.  I expanded that to include references to the character in other shows.  (Batman and Captain Kirk are really good for that.)

Well, I’ve been doing this for twenty years now; I’m getting older.  And basically flirted with death a few times in the last five years.

So I’m not as strict with the TVXOHOF as I once was.  I need to remember this is just a site with which I can have some fun and keep my mind relaxed.  Life literally is too short to get hung up about stuff.

But I’m still excluding the printed word and audio dramas.  Toobworld will always be a visual medium universe.  (But there are times when I admit that certain things in BookWorld or the Audioverse could have happened in Toobworld.  But on the whole it leaves me free to toss aside things that don’t work for my telly vision… like “Oswald Cobblepot” being the real name of the Penguin from Earth Prime-Time.  (The alternate TV dimension of ‘Gotham’ can do as it pleases.)

I did have another character whom I was claiming was Randolph Agarn using an alias, as was often the case in the tall tales of the Old West.  What made this “Game of the Name” tempting is that he was teamed up with another TV character who looked EXACTLY like Agarn’s former sergeant and business partner, Morgan Sylvester O’Rourke….

The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams
- Gold Is Where You Find It

... Wally 

From the IMDb:

Two inept men with dreams of gold search for it on the mountain, with a map they got for ten dollars. Their efforts upset the calm balance of nature around them, leading Adams and others to try and stop them before real damage is done. 

The real John “Grizzly” Adams died in 1860, and Toobworld has seen the lives of historical figures be altered with regards to their timelines in the past (example: Jules Verne in ‘The Secret Adventures Of Jules Verne’.)  And that’s nothing compared to some of the changes made to historical figures – like Lily Langtry as a vampire in ‘The Kindred’.

But in the end, after watching the episode, I decided it was getting too complicated.  So citing Occam’s razor, I’m going to claim that Wally Tait and Ernie Ketcham (or were they Ernie Tait and Wally Ketcham?) were identical cousins to O’Rourke and Agarn.  It was already established in ‘F Troop’ that the Agarn Family had strong genetics, but in the case of Morgan O’Rourke and Ernie, I think we saw a case of infidelity on the part of Sgt. O’Rourke’s father back in Ireland, 1819.  (The mother of this bastard child must have fled the Emerald Isle in shame and raised young Ernest in America*.) 

One easement to my rules about TVXOHOF was on display last week as I honored the memory of Sir Roger Moore with the induction of Beau Maverick for a theory of relateeveety in which I posited that he was responsible for extended family trees for the Mavericks, the Templars, and the Sinciairs.  And this week we’re continuing that theme with perhaps the greatest example of Toobworld’s strong telegenetics with the induction of Corporal Agarn.

In this case, I think we're inducting Agarn's DNA sequence.  


As mentioned above, every so often on the sitcom a new member of Agarn’s family would show up at Fort Courage.  And each of them was played by Larry Storch.







I’ve often written about the power of tele-genetics, that  Toobworld combinations of DNA can repeat several times over down through the generations.  And as we see here, it doesn’t have to be a direct line of descent.  All of these cousins and other relatives had an ancestor who looked like them and that DNA sequence then was passed down through the many branches of the Agarn family tree.

In this particular case, I call the phenomenon of this particular DNA combination “agarnosis”.

But with all of those cousins, they do nothing more to establish Agarn’s eligibility for the Hall than to establish how strong the Agarn DNA chain is.

Based on that, however, I don’t think it’s hard to imagine that any characters portrayed by Larry Storch in later years of the Toobworld Timeline could be descended from Randolph Agarn.

Here are the main Storch characters who are likely to call Randolph Agarn “Great Grandpa”:

Eddie Spencer
‘The Ghostbusters’

Charlie Duffy

‘The Queen And I’

Duke Farentino
‘The Doris Day Show’

Charlie Adamopolis
‘Car 54, Where Are You?’

In my theory of relateeveety, Agarn had gone back to Passaic, New Jersey, and married a girl back home.  And he probably had daughters, perhaps even just one who gave Agarn a lot of granddaughters.  They all married and took their husbands’ names so that’s why we never see any characters from the 1960s to the 1990s who named Agarn.

But he could have had a son, because there was one of his single-shot characters who could have had the last name of “Agarn”:

The Groovy Guru
‘Get Smart’

So here are just a few more TV characters who could be descended from Randolph Agarn.  First off, since he may have left his wife and brood of daughters in New Jersey while he went back to Fort Courage in Kansas, then it’s more believable that any of Storch’s NYC-based characters are more likely to be descended from Agarn.

Return to the Alamo

... Parkes

All in the Family
- Oh Say Can You See

... Bill Mulheron

The Persuaders!
- Angie. Angie 

... Angie

Charlie Duffy of ‘The Queen and I’ and Charlie Adamopolis of ‘Car 54, Where Are You?’ would be included in that New York contingent.  In fact, it could be that the two of them shared not only Randolph Agarn as their great-grandfather, but a man named Charles as their grandfather.  And that might explain why they shared the first name, named after that grandfather in tribute.

Here are some other TV characters of interest who were either descended from Agarn, or from somebody in that family tree.

- “Negative Reaction”

Mr. Weekley

The driving examiner is probably one of the most seen of Storch’s characters, because of the popularity and availability of the shaggy detective’s series.  I think he’s one of the Agarn descendants who stands alone without identical cousins or twin brothers.  But even so, he’s considered still to have Agarn as his great-grandfather.

The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries
- The Mystery of the Silent Scream (1977)
... Jesse Miller

Kolchak: The Night Stalker
- The Vampire (1974)
... Swede

Miller was a nightclub performer in Las Vegas.  Duke Farentino was a prize fighter who became a dance instructor and then an entertainer in San Francisco several years earlier.  I was tempted to conflate them into one character, but decided against it.

However, I think “Jesse Miller” was a stage name; that his last name used to be Grytofsky.  His twin brother is James Grytofsky who used to be a newspaper reporter in Las Vegas.  And he changed his name as well to “James Bright” before taking a job as the anchorman at a TV station in Cincinnati.  But no matter what name he used, everybody called him “Swede”.


- The Case of the Purloined Case (1976)
... Benny Shore

Like Jesse Miller, Benny Shore was a Las Vegas nightclub comic who went bad and ended up murdering his girlfriend to protect himself.  But I don’t think they can be conflated, just because of the timeline and jail sentences.  But I’m open to the idea of Jesse (and his twin brother Swede) having an identical cousin in Benny.  And by “identical cousin”, I’m thinking of the darker interpretation – that Pops Grytofsky carried on an illicit relationship with Benny’s mother while his own wife was heavy with twins.

The Flying Nun

- The Not So Great Impostor (1969)
... Joe Barnes/Roy Barnes

Barnes could be another one of the “identical cousins” of the Grytofsky boys whose father was biologically the same as Jesse and

This is an interesting one…..

The Misadventures of Sheriff Lobo

- Buttercup, Birdie, and Buried Bucks (1979)
... Pappy Beauregard

Pappy Beauregard….  Sounds familiar, right?  If you’re a fan of ‘Maverick’, it should be.  Had “Beauregard” been Pappy’s first name, I would have a field day with creating a family tree connection to Beauregard “Pappy” Maverick.    

But as it stands, with “Beauregard” as the family name, it’s just a fabulous coincidence.  And it doesn’t invalidate the Agarn genealogical connection.

- Off the Bench (1976)
... Bum 

From the IMDb:
Phyllis's bum friend Van has a crush on a higher class woman, Lucille. Phyllis tries to clean him up to make him into a more presentable gentleman.

CPO Sharkey
- A Wino Is Loose (1977)
... The Bum

From the IMDb:

When a homeless drunk enters the barracks and makes himself at home, Sharkey is livid. And nothing that the men do dislodges the man from his comfy quarters. 

Neither of these two bums were given names in the episode, so I’m going to claim that they are not only the same man, spending time in San Francisco before traveling down the coast to San Diego, but also that he’s actually Charlie Adamopolis who used to haunt the 53rd Precinct in the Bronx.

As such not only am I considering Charlie for the Agarn family tree, but he’ll also be a Friday Hall of Famer in January of 2020 when we celebrate the Classics.

Randolph Agarn wasn’t the only member of the family who had a descendant in modern times:

Phyl & Mikhy

- The Seduction of Mikhail Orlov (1980)
... Ivan

Being from behind the Soviet Iron Curtain, it’s O’Bvious to me that he must be descended from Dmitri Agarnoff.  I wouldn’t be surprised if that was his last name as well.  (But I could be wrong.  I usally am.)


I Dream of Jeannie
- Fly Me to the Moon (1967)
... Sam

How strong was Agarn’s DNA sequence?  It’s possible that it exists even in a different evolutionary branch, as Jeannie was able to transform Sam, a NASA chimp, into a human who looked just like Agarn.  Those who do magic in Toobworld can’t just summon results out of thin air; they have to have something to work with.  So the basic building blocks were there and probably within the genetic makeup of Sam’s chimp ancestors since the original divergence.

Just sayin’ is all…..

I just thought of another possibility - Larry Storch played himself in an episode of 'Married... with Children'.  So the televersion of Mr. Storch could even be related to Randolph Agarn!

As of 1919, Randolph Agarn was still alive, born a century before Larry Storch.  Here's to them both having many more years to come!

At any rate, welcome to the TV Crossover Hall of Fame, Corporal Agarn.  I don’t why people think you’re not worthy……

Happy Trails!


* It’s pozz’ble, just pozz’ble, that Ernie was named after his father, even if he didn’t marry Ernie’s mother.  Therefore, Mr. O’Rourke’s given name could have been Ernest.  But I’ll have to watch that episode to make sure.

Thursday, August 29, 2019




At some point during the 1870s, Beau Maverick gained a partnership in a basically worthless saloon run by Charlotte Simmons.  One night, a miner calling himself “the Dutchman” enters the bar with a sack of gold chunks.  He is robbed of them by a bandit named Padilla and so Beau stakes him to go back for more, in exchange for a percentage – provided that he and Charlotte go along.

By the end of the adventure, the Dutchman was dead, killed by the Apaches, which seemingly proved the Dutchman’s claim that the gold was cursed.

Now let’s go back in prime time for this particular theory of relateeveety….

The Dutchman had left behind family in the Netherlands, hoping to seek his fortune in the East Indies.  While there, he had his way with at least one of the native maidens.  Eventually that led to a descendant named Urulu who was a tribal chief on the island of Taratupa during WWII.  But that’s a story for another post.

The Dutchman eventually left the East Indies and traveled to America after hearing news of the Gold Rush.  And that’s where he eventually crossed paths with Beau Maverick. 

He also continued his womanizing ways in the wild, wild West, and sired more children.  One of the descendants from such a relationship was Geoffrey Neal.  He grew up to establish his own publishing house, for which he was going to spirit away best-selling author Alan Mallory – until Mallory’s former publisher Riley Greenleaf put an end to that idea.

Dunh dunh DUNN!


O'Bservation - Jacques Aubuchon, who played both roles, was only 37 at the time of the filming of the 'Maverick'.  But he looks older and was probably playing older.  In fact, I think he was referred to as an old man during the bar confrontation.  So he could have come to America through San Francisco by 1849 as a young man and spent nearly thirty years before he met Beau Maverick.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019


Back in early April of this year, I posted this to the Classic TV Western Lovers’ Haven page on Facebook.  (I’m proud to be a founding member there.)

From Wikipedia:

Despite a rumor to the contrary, Albert Einstein never appeared on ‘Gunsmoke’. Albert Einstein died on April 18, 1955, 4 1/2 months before ‘Gunsmoke’ aired. The fact-checking website Snopes attributes the likely origin of the rumor to Stephen Hawking appearing in an episode of ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ in 1993. Actor Brent Spiner was quoted at the time as saying it was "the most notable moment in television history since Albert Einstein guest-starred on ‘Gunsmoke’." Although Spiner's remark was a joke, someone wrote to TV Guide in 1994 to ask if Einstein really had appeared on the show.

I know he was a big fan of the Western genre; he enjoyed going to see the outdoor pageants in Germany which celebrated the writings of Karly May, a German author of Western adventures in the style of dime novels.

What if he did ask for the chance to appear on a TV Western?  Considering that he died in April, 1955, from an aneurysm, options were limited....

Hopalong Cassidy
6/24/1949 – 12/23/1951 NBC

Gene Autry
7/23/1950 – 8/7/1956 CBS

Death Valley Days
1952-1970, Also 1974 Syndicated

Stories of the Century
1954 Syndicated
1955 was the year in which TV Westerns took off in popularity.

I could see him being starry-eyed for the chance to meet Gene Autry and William Boyd, but I think 'Death Valley Days' would have been a better showcase for the German genius.  He could have played some famous German scientist who visited the Old West.  Perhaps in an episode focusing on Philip Deidesheimer, a mining engineer who improved the safety of mine shafts and tunnels.  (His story was told in an episode of 'Bonanza'.)

Glückliche Wege!

Tuesday, August 27, 2019


From my FB friend, Cassandra Cass Majors:
"The Calico Kid" focuses on a character used eleven years earlier in the syndicated western series Buffalo Bill, Jr. In the Laredo version, the Kid is Sam Lowell, who has matured into a respected citizen of the fictional town of Guarded Wells, Texas. Chad and Joe try to help Lowell continue the deception of his true identity. Meanwhile, a businessman plots to steal gold bullion from the bank while the citizenry is distracted.


From the IMDb:
Parmalee sends Chad and Joe to Guarded Wells to wipe out the Ramirez gang. Once the job is done, the people of the town provide free hospitality. Not wanting to leave it, they make up a story about the Calico Kid which goes out of control.

The way I view it, the Calico Kid did exist… in Toobworld.  But he was operating, according to the ‘Laredo’ episode, thirty years prior to that episode.

We got to meet the “real” Calico Kid (real name Sam Lowell) who now ran the livery stable while taking care of his grown grand-daughter.  And during the episode, Chad Cooper AND Jacobus Carson had reason to impersonate him.


From the IMDb:
A poor miner's daughter comes to town expecting to see a rich father.

Buffalo Bill, Jr. also had reason to dress up as the Calico Kid and even rob the stage, all to show Sagebrush’s daughter that he really did live in a wild and woolly town.  It’s likely the Calico Kid was also a legend by the time of this episode.  We never got to meet the “actual” Calico Kid, so no matter the difference in the time periods for both of these series, we can assume the Calico Kid would have looked like actor George Chandler.

To make this a Two for Tuesday post, here are both of those episodes about the Calico Kid.  Enjoy them while you can!

A tip of the Stetson to Cassandra for the idea....

Happy Trails!

Monday, August 26, 2019


From Wikipedia:
Benito Pablo Juárez García (21 March 1806 – 18 July 1872) was a Mexican lawyer and president of Mexico, of Zapotec origin from Oaxaca.
He was of poor, rural, indigenous origins, but he became a well-educated, urban professional and politician, who married a socially prominent woman of Oaxaca City, Margarita Maza. He identified primarily as a Liberal and wrote only briefly about his indigenous heritage.
He held power during the tumultuous decade of the Liberal Reformand French invasion. In 1858 as head of the Supreme Court, he became president of Mexico by the succession mandated by the Constitution of 1857 when moderate liberal President Ignacio Comonfortwas forced to resign by Mexican conservatives. Juárez remained in the presidential office until his death by natural causes in 1872. He weathered the War of the Reform (1858–60), a civil war between Liberals and Conservatives, and then the French invasion (1862–67), which was supported by Mexican Conservatives. Never relinquishing office although forced into exile in areas of Mexico not controlled by the French, Juárez tied Liberalism to Mexican nationalism and maintained that he was the legitimate head of the Mexican state, rather than Emperor Maximilian. When the French-backed Second Mexican Empire fell in 1867, the Mexican Republic with Juárez as president was restored to full power.  In his success in ousting the European incursion, Latin Americans considered his a "second struggle for independence, a second defeat for the European powers, and a second reversal of the Conquest."
He is now "a preeminent symbol of Mexican nationalism and resistance to foreign intervention." Juárez was a practical and skilled politician, controversial in his lifetime and beyond. He had an understanding of the importance of a working relationship with the United States, and secured its recognition for his liberal government during the War of the Reform. Although many of his positions shifted during his political life, he held fast to particular principles including the supremacy of civil power over the Catholic Church and part of the military; respect for law; and the de-personalization of political life. In his lifetime he sought to strengthen the national government and asserted the supremacy of central power over states, a position that both radical and provincial liberals opposed.  He was the subject of polemical attacks both in his lifetime and beyond. However, the place of Juárez in Mexican historical memory has enshrined him as a major Mexican hero, beginning in his own lifetime.
His birthday (March 21) is a national public and patriotic holiday in Mexico, Juárez being the only individual Mexican so honored.
In January 1959, the episode entitled "The Desperadoes" of the ABC/Warner Brothers western television series, ‘Sugarfoot’, starring Will Hutchins in the title role, focuses upon an imaginary plot to assassinate Juárez. Set at a mission in South Texas, the episode features Anthony George as a Catholic priest, Father John, a friend of the series character Tom "Sugarfoot" Brewster.
The actor Jan Arvan (1913-1979) was cast as President Juárez in the 1959 episode, "A Town Is Born" on the syndicated television anthology series, ‘Death Valley Days’, hosted by Stanley Andrews. Than Wyenn played Isaacs, a storekeeper in Nogales, Arizona Territory, who hides gold for the Mexican government in the fight against Maximilian. Jean Howell played his wife, Ruth Isaacs.
Frank Sorello (1929-2013) portrayed Juárez in two episodes of Robert Conrad's ‘The Wild Wild West’, an American espionage adventure television program: "The Night of the Eccentrics" (1966), and "The Night of the Assassin" (1967).

I’ve made my displeasure with “recastaways” in the past well known, yet I think these two portrayals of Juarez on television can exist in Earth Prime-Time, the main Toobworld.  The reason for the difference in the appearance of Juarez within the reality of Toobworld can be attributed to perspective.  As the ‘Death Valley Days’ episode stands alone as part of an anthology series without any established TV character, I’m going to consider Jan Arvan as the official version of Juarez.  Mr. Sorello may have played him twice, but for Toobworld he’s how Juarez looked to James T. West.

Happy Trails!