It’s been a grievous oversight by Toobworld Central that Fred G. Sanford has not been inducted into the Television Crossover Hall of Fame yet. And it’s still not happening this year. Sanford’s contribution to Earth Prime-Time is too strong to be relegated to the Friday Hall of Famers.
But as a member of the League of Themselves, Redd Foxx, the comic actor who played Fred Sanford, just barely makes it to fulfill the bare minimum of requirements to join the TVXOHOF. And so as a prelude to the eventual membership for Fred, the TV Crossover Hall of Fame welcomes….
From Wikipedia: John Elroy Sanford (December 9, 1922 – October 11, 1991), better known by his stage name Redd Foxx, was an American stand-up comedian and actor best known for his portrayal of Fred G. Sanford of the hit television show ‘Sanford and Son’. Foxx gained success with his raunchy nightclub acts during the 1950s and 1960s. Known as the "King of the Party Records", he performed on more than 50 records in his lifetime. He also starred on TV in ‘The Redd Foxx Show’ and ‘The Royal Family’. His film projects included “All the Fine Young Cannibals” (1960), “Cotton Comes to Harlem” (1970), “Norman... Is That You?” (1976) and “Harlem Nights” (1989).
In 2004 Foxx ranked 24th in “Comedy Central Presents: 100 Greatest Stand-ups of All Time”. Foxx not only influenced many comedians but was often portrayed in popular culture as well, mainly as a result of his catchphrases, body language and facial expressions exhibited on ‘Sanford and Son’.
During the show's five-year run, Foxx won a Golden Globe Award and received an additional three nominations, along with three Primetime Emmy Award nominations.
Foxx was posthumously given a star on the St. Louis Walk of Fame in 1992.
Here are the three TV series (four appearances) which qualify the late comedian for membership:
The Name of the Game - I Love You, Billy Baker: Part 1 (1970)
From the IMDb: Las Vegas entertainer Billy Baker doesn't like interviews - especially when they concern that girl who died so mysteriously, Jeff Dillon investigates.
- I Love You, Billy Baker: Part 2 (1970)
From the IMDb: In the second half of this two-part episode, the world of entertainer Billy Baker begins to unravel completely.
Sanford And Son - Fred Meets Redd (1977) [Also appearing – obviously – as Fred G. Sanford]
From the IMDb: The fourth wall falls when Fred enters NBC's Redd Foxx look-alike contest and eagerly anticipates meeting his idol face to face.
Flying High - High Rollers (1978)
From the IMDb: During a flight to Las Vegas, Pam gets to know Wilbur Dobson, a dentist on the verge of retirement. This one tells her of his intention, following a conflict opposing him to his psychiatrist son Glen, to open a home for the elderly. Hearing that, Pam decides to try anything to reconcile the two men. As for Lisa, she finds herself outright assaulted by Steve Enders, a variety artist who has got it in his head to test on her his theories about love at first sight.
All of Redd's appearances on talk shows and variety programs don't contribute to his official tally, but they do add flavoring to his presence as himself in Toobworld.
Here are some of the more interesting additions to his League of Themselves appearances.....
And there's this clip from the talk show of another member of the TVXOHOF....
(In order: 'Flip', ;The Jacksons', 'The Brady Bunch Variety Hour', 'Donny & Marie', and 'Sammy and Company')
Welcome to the Hall, Mr. Foxx. Just remember to keep the language in the Blue Room….
In this series, Harley Carter starred as Charlie Carter in the action series 'Call Carter'. Because of his past in Hollywood, Carter has name-dropped plenty of bold-type celebrities in its first season. And those references establish them as being "alive" in the TV Universe. While not as strong as an actual appearance, mentions still qualify such televersions as being eligible for membership in the Television Crossover Hall of Fame.
In this second season premiere of Jerry O’Connell’s series, Harley Carter revealed that Antonio Sabato, Jr. and Christine Baranski appeared in an episode of his TV series ‘Call Carter’:
Harley Carter: You ever fall for a patient? Or let me rephrase that, you ever roll a patient up into a carpet and dump her off a bridge just like Antonio Sabato, Jr. did to Christine Baranski in episode 17, season 4 of ‘Call Carter’?
He later mentioned that he did a TV movie with lone Skye….
Captain Joyce Boyle: You paid for your own chopper? Carter: I had a little extra change in my piggy bank. And by piggy bank, I mean a TV movie I did with lone Skye, where I played her lover with amnesia.
These are not the actual actors from our world, Earth Prime, but their televersions as seen on TV, meaning the actors from Toobworld, Earth Prime-Time.
These statements confirm that their televersions exist in the main Toobworld. And should either one of them appear in another TV series as themselves, that other show would automatically be connected to ‘Carter’, thanks to their mentions in this episode.
Of the three, Antonio Sabato Jr. is now eligible for membership in the TV Crossover Hall of Fame as a member of the League of Themselves. This mention can join these other appearances of his televersion:
Ugly Betty - The Fall Issue (2009)
Scrubs - Our Drunk Friend (2009) - Our First Day of School (2009)
Ione Skye isn’t too far behind, however. She appeared as her own televersion in three episodes of the “psychiatrist to the stars” sitcom ‘Head Cases’. She really only needs one more TV show in which she appears as herself to qualify for the Hall.
Carter is now linked to 'Scrubs' and 'Ugly Betty' thanks to Sabato, and to 'Head Cases' because of Skye. But alas, nothing yet from Baranski as far as I can make out.
From CBS News: Los Angeles Lakers icon and five-time NBA champion Kobe Bryant died Sunday in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California. An investigation into the crash that killed all nine people on board, including Bryant, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, is ongoing, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
From Wikipedia: Kobe Bean Bryant (August 23, 1978 – January 26, 2020) was an American professional basketball player. A shooting guard, Bryant entered the National Basketball Association (NBA) directly from high school, and played his entire 20-season professional career in the league with the Los Angeles Lakers. Bryant won five NBA championships, was an 18-time All-Star, 15-time member of the All-NBA Team, 12-time member of the All-Defensive Team, was named the 2008 NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP), and was a two-time NBA Finals MVP winner. Widely regarded as one of the greatest players of all time, he led the NBA in scoring during two seasons, ranks fourth on the league's all-time regular season scoring, and ranks fourth on the all-time postseason scoring list.
At 34 years and 104 days of age, Bryant became the youngest player in league history to reach 30,000 career points. He became the all-time leading scorer in Lakers franchise history on February 1, 2010, surpassing Jerry West. Bryant was also the first guard in NBA history to play at least 20 seasons. His 18 All-Star designations are the second most all time, while it is the record for most consecutive appearances as a starter. Bryant's four All-Star MVP Awards are tied with Bob Pettit for the most in NBA history. At the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympics, he won two gold medals as a member of the U.S. national team. In 2018, he won the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film for his film, Dear Basketball (2017).
Bryant died on January 26, 2020, in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California. Eight others, including his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Bryant, and college baseball coach John Altobelli, were also killed.
I’m not a basketball fan, but I certainly knew of Kobe, the highs but also the lows. That rape claim caught my notice, which basketball accolades never could. And I did know of the Oscar win as well.
So sadly, I might never have even thought to research his qualifications for membership in the Television Crossover Hall of Fame had it not been for his death. I couldn’t use his game footage, news reports, talk show appearances. But I figured if he showed up in any TV show as his fictional televersion, it might be ‘Arli$$’. So off to IMDb I went.
He definitely deserves to be in the Hall.
Here are the roles which qualified him:
Arli$$ - What About the Fans? (1996)
From the IMDB: Arliss gets an offer he can't refuse: find a new home for the L.A. Kings hockey team and become their part-owner. Will it be Raleigh, North Carolina, Las Vegas or New Mexico?
Sister, Sister - Kid-Napped (1996)
From the IMDb: A new girl's popularity drives Tia and Tamera to pull strings. Playing himself, Bryant-as-a-character shot a commercial for popular girl Rhonda's father. He also had a line about loving waffles, because reasons.
Hang Time - The Hustlers (1997)
From the IMDb: In California, Julie and Teddy are the only ones practicing; the rest of the team goes with Mary Beth to watch for celebrities at their hotel. Julie and Teddy are targeted by professional basketball hustlers. Vince finds Mel Gibson's wallet.
In the House - Men in the Black (1997)
From the IMDb: When Marion dates a construction boss, the clinic's decor improves. Tonia attracts attention with her new appearance. Basketball players DEREK FISHER and KOBE BRYANT guest star.
Bette - I Love This Game (2000)
From the IMDb: Bette's attempts to score Lakers tickets at the last minute for her husband's birthday hardly go off without a hitch.
Modern Family - Family Portrait (2010)
From the IMDb: Claire goes through great lengths to organize a family portrait. Gloria and Phil have an awkward moment while taking Manny and Alex to a Lakers game. Cameron becomes a wedding singer, and Jay has to help Luke with a school project.
And he even had a presence in the Tooniverse.
The Proud Family - One in a Million (2003)
From the IMDb: Penny wins a chance to shoot a half court shot at a basketball game for one million dollars. Oscar convinces her to let him make the shot to make good on a high school dream.
I’m sorry for the reason you’re being inducted now, Kobe. I wish it had been for a happier occasion – like your eventual induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame. But welcome to the Hall. Kareem Abdul Jabar is already here so you could get a game of Horse going in the gym.
And my condolences to all the family and friends of the other victims.
As the Trickster once said, "Reality is boring, that's why I change it whenever I can."
I'm just "The Man Who Viewed Too Much", and "Inner Toob" is a blog exploring and celebrating the 'reality' of an alternate universe in which everything that ever happened on TV actually takes place.
Most of my theories about the TV Universe come from thinking inside the box and thus can't be proven. But I've never been one to shy away from a tall tale.....
Remember: "The more you watch, the more you've seen!"