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Found 17 results

  1. I had heard of Route 66, but never knew what it was (other than a TV series), so I decided to watch Season 1, Episode 1, and was pleased to see Martin Milner co-starring as Tod Stiles (Martin Milner was the policeman driving on Adam-12, which I *loved* as a young teen). The other co-star (for the first three seasons) was George Maharis, as Buz Murdock, who also starred on the short-lived series, "The Most Deadly Game." After Maharis had to drop out because he contracted hepatitis, he was replaced by Glenn Corbett (also as Buz Murdock) who was, believe it or not, Zefram Cochrane: the inventor of warp drive on Star Trek! The series is free on Hulu (with ads). Route 66 is a "Thelma & Louise"-style "road trip" series, in which the same two friends run into different situations and people each week (hence the term, "hybrid anthology-drama"). It was an indirect-spin-off of the series "Naked City." It's an "anthology," because every week is in a different location, with different characters and situations; it's a "serial," because it's always the same premise, with the same two co-stars - so you have a little of both. Episode 1 was really good - very creepy, actually - and if I watch more episodes from Season 1, I'll fill them in here as I go (if you see them filled in, that means I've watched more, but didn't want to take up your time with additional postings). Where were you when you heard about the World Trade Center bombings on 9/11? It probably seems very fresh in your mind - it's important to remember, when watching TV shows such as Route 66, that the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki occurred just as recently to them, as the World Trade Center bombings occurred to us now - that's how fresh WWII was in their minds. I'm not saying Route 66 has anything to do with WWII; merely that it helps to have that perspective because that war influenced everything (and, yes, I'd be lying if I said their weren't some allusions to WWII in Season 1, Episode 1). I'm not sure if the website, route66tvshow.blogspot.com, is comprehensive, but the work they put into covering Season 1, Episode 1 is absolutely extraordinary, and I'll be using it as my reference-link until I find a reason not to. I can't believe someone could put *this* much work into covering all 116 episodes, but maybe it's true - anyway: *highly* recommended from what little I've seen. Anyone wishing to go into depth about any given episode should go to this blog, and explore it in detail. [Edit: Unfortunately, it only goes on for the first nine episodes, and I've had no success in contacting the blogger - what a shame.] Season One (Oct 7, 1960 - Jun 16, 1961) 1.1 - "Black November" - Directed by Philip Leacock (Director of "The War Lover"), Written by Stirling Silliphant (Academy Award Winner for Best Adapted Screenplay for "In the Heat of the Night") Featuring Everett Sloane (Bernstein in "Citizen Kane") and in an *extremely* early appearance: Keir Dullea (David Bowman in "2001: A Space Odyssey") [Apologies for the darkness of the picture above, but it was one of the few good shots of a very, very young Keir Dullea ("Open the pod bay doors, HAL.")] 1.2 - "A Lance of Straw" - Directed by Roger Kay (Director of "The Cabinet of Caligari"), Written by Stirling Silliphant (2) Featuring Janice Rule (Helen Foley in "Nightmare as a Child" on "The Twilight Zone"), Thomas Gomez, and Nico Minardos (the Doctor in "The Gift" on "The Twilight Zone" (2)) 1.3 - "The Swan Bed" - Directed by Elliot Silverstein (Director of "Cat Ballou," Director of 4 episodes of "The Twilight Zone" (3)), Written by Stirling Silliphant (3) Featuring Zina Bethune (Gail Lucas on "The Nurses"), Betty Field (Mae in "Of Mice and Men"), Henry Hull (The Werewolf in "The Werewolf of London"), Murry Hamilton (Death in "One for the Angels" on "The Twilight Zone" (4), Mr. Robinson in "The Graduate") 1.4 - "The Man on the Monkey Board" - Directed by Roger Kay (2), Written by Stirling Silliphant (4) Featuring Lew Ayres (Paul Bäumer in "All Quiet on the Western Front," Academy Award Nominee for Best Actor as Dr. Robert Richardson in "Johnny Belinda"), Alfred Ryder (Edgar Price in "The Borderland" on "The Outer Limits," Professor Robert Crater in "The Man Trap" on "Star Trek" (2, the series premier, aired exactly fifty years to the day before I'm writing this sentence)), Frank Overton (Sheriff Heck Tate in "To Kill a Mockingbird"), Bruce Dern (Academy Award Nominee for Best Actor (2) as Woodrow "Woody" Grant in "Nebraska," Academy Award Nominee for Best Supporting Actor as Captain Bob Hyde in "Coming Home"), Ed Asner (Seven-Time Emmy Award Winner, Lou Grant on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show," Captain Davies on "Roots"), Roger C. Carmel (Roger Buell on "The Mothers-in-Law," Harcourt Fenton Mudd in "I, Mudd" on "Star Trek" (3)) 1.5 - "The Strengthening Angels" - Directed by Arthur Hiller (Directed "Love Story"), Written by Stirling Silliphant (5) Featuring Suzanne Pleshette (Anne in "Hitch Hike" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," Annie Hayworth in "The Birds," Emily Hartley on "The Bob Newhart Show" ), John Larch (Mr. Fremont in "It's a Good Life" on "The Twilight Zone" (5), Chief of Police in "Dirty Harry"), Harry Townes (Three episodes of "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (2) Arch Hammer in "The Four of Us Are Dying" (2) on "The Twilight Zone" (6), Dr. Clifford Scott in "O.B.I.T." on "The Outer Limits" (2), Reger in "The Return of the Archons" on "Star Trek" (4)), Warren Stevens 1.6 - "Ten Drops of Water" - Directed by Philip Leacock (2), Written by Howard Rodman (Writer of 26 episodes of "Naked City") Featuring Burt Brinckerhoff (Director of "7th Heaven"), Deborah Walley (Gidget in "Gidget Goes Hawaiian"), Tony Haig (Johnny Hutton in "Twenty Miles from Dodge" on Gunsmoke) [Tony Haig, the twelve-year-old boy in this episode, didn't go on to have a big acting career, but he was absolutely magnificent in this episode, and it would have been justified to nominate (or award) him an Emmy for his fantastic performance here.] 1.7 - "Three Sides" - Directed by Philip Leacock (3), Written by Stirling Silliphant (6) Featuring E.G. Marshall (Juror #4 in "12 Angry Men," Ronald J. Grimes in "Mail Order Prophet" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (3)), Stephen Bolster (Roger Landover in "One Life to Live,"), Joey Heatherton (Singer on "The Joey Heatherton Album,"), Johnny Seven (Karl Matuschka in "The Apartment,") Paul Genge (Mike in "Bullitt") 1.8 - "Legacy for Lucia" - Directed by Philip Leacock (4), Written by - Teleplay: Stirling Silliphant (7), Story: Melvin Levy (Co-Writer of "The Six Million Dollar Man" (movie)) and Stirling Silliphant Featuring Arlene Martel (Morgue Nurse in "Twenty Two" on "The Twilight Zone" (7), T'Pring in "Amok Time" on "Star Trek" (5)), John Larch (2), Jay C. Flippen (Happy Spangler in "The Return of Happy Spangler" on "The Dick Van Dyke Show") 1.9 - "Layout at Glen Canyon" - (Unfortunately, route66tvshow.blogspot.com ended after just nine episodes.) Directed by Elliot Silverstein (2), Written by Stirling Silliphant (8) Featuring Charles McGraw (Mike Burkeman in "Johnny Got his Gun"). Bethel Leslie (Nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series or Movie as Ellen Dudley in "Statement of Fact" on "The Richard Boone Show"), Zohra Lampert (Jessica Heyman in "Let's Scare Jessica to Death"), Richard Shannon (Buck Henderson in "The Tin Star"), Lane Nakano (A Japanese-American who fought in the 442nd Infantry Regiment. in WWII, Sam in "Go for Broke"), Elizabeth MacRae (Lou-Ann Poovie on "Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C."), Donna Douglas (Elly May Clampett in "The Beverly Hillbillies") [Like the excellent route66tvshow.blogspot.com blog (which, unfortunately, ends after this episode), and all the other critiques I've read, I, too, thought this episode was a jumbled mess. Then, I saw it a second time, and almost a third time, and I realize now that it isn't a jumbled mess at all; it's just too complex for a "mere" TV serial - it's a *great* episode, and commands several viewings in order to fully appreciate.] 1.10 - "The Beryllium Eater" - Directed by Alvin Ganzer (Director of 4 episodes of "The Twilight Zone" (8)), Written by Richard Collins (Producer of 127 episodes of "Bonanza") Featuring Edgar Buchanan (Pops in "Coyote Moon" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (4), Doc Bolton in "The Last Rites of Jeff Myrtlebank" on "The Twilight Zone" (9), Uncle Joe Carson on "Petticoat Junction"), Edward Binns (Juror #6 in "12 Angry Men" (2), Mr. Brown in "Heart of Gold" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (5), Colonel Donlin in "I Shot an Arrow into the Air" and General Walters in "The Long Morrow" on "The Twilight Zone" (10)), Inger Stevens (Karen Wilson in "Forecast: Low Clouds and Coastal Fog" on "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour," Nan Adams in "The Hitch-Hiker" and Jana in "The Lateness of the Hour" on "The Twilight Zone" (11)) [How do you not love an episode when "Uncle Joe" on "Petticoat Junction" strikes it rich?] 1.11 - "A Fury Singing Flame" - Directed by Elliot Silverstein (3), Written by Stirling Silliphant (9) Featuring Leslie Nielsen (Lloyd Ashley in "The $2,000,000 Defense" and Rudy Cox in "Ambition" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (6), Steven Grainger in "The Magic Shop" on "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour" (2), The Phantom in "The Phantom of What Opera" and Colonel Denny Malloy in "A Question of Fear" on "Night Gallery," Dr. Rumack in "Airplane!"), Fay Spain (Leslie Lenox in "The Last Dark Step" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (7), Mrs. Marcia Roth in "The Godfather, Part II"), Lili Kardell (Lorna Jenkins in "Malice Domestic" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (8)) [Leslie Nielsen was serious, respected, dramatic actor until the 1987 film "Airplane!," which was his very first comedic role - he essentially had two careers as an actor. I chose the entrance path to Carlsbad Caverns as a picture because it's special to me personally - I've been there twice, and on my second visit, I had to drive two hours *averaging* 75 mph (it was New Mexico, with higher speed limits) to make the final tour of the day - I made it, but I had to literally run down the trail and yell out for the tour guide: After two hours of panic, I made the tour, by about fifteen seconds - I remember the entrance path - where the photo above was filmed - very well. For anyone who's been to Carlsbad Caverns, and remembers them turning the lights off - probably one of the only times in your entire life you've experienced essentially 100% darkness - there's a good moment in this episode that will make you remember the tour.] 1.12 - "Sheba" - Directed by William F. Claxton (Directed 68 episodes of "Little House on the Prairie"), Written by Stirling Silliphant (10) Featuring Lee Marvin (Conny Miller in "The Grave" and Sam "Steel" Kelly in "Steel" on "The Twilight Zone" (12), Academy Award Winner for Best Actor as Kid Shelleen and Tim Strawn in "Cat Ballou" (2)), Whitney Blake (Dorothy Baxter on "Hazel") ["Sheba" is a riff on the biblical story of "Bathsheba" - thus, it's not a surprise that Lee Marvin's character has the *unbelievably hilarious* name of "Woody Biggs" (in the biblical version, King David lusts after Bathsheba after seeing her bathing). 1.13 - "The Quick and the Dead" - Directed by Alvin Ganser (2), Written by - Teleplay: Stirling Silliphant (11), Story: Charles Beaumont (Writer of 22 episodes of "The Twilight Zone" (13), Teleplay of "Backward, Turn Backward" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (9), Co-Producer and Co-Writer of "The Masque of the Red Death") and Jerry Sohl (Writer of 4 episodes of "Alfred Hitchcock Predsents" (10) Writer of 3 episodes of "The Twilight Zone" (14), Writer of "Counterweight" and "The Invisible Enemy" on "The Outer Limits" (3), Writer of 3 episodes of "Star Trek" (6)) Featuring Susan Kohner (Sarah Jane in "Imitation of Life"), Frank Overton (Martin's Dad in "Walking Distance" on "The Twilight Zone" (15), Sheriff Heck Tate in "To Kill a Mockingbird," Elias Sandoval in "This Side of Paradise" on "Star Trek" (7)) Betsy Jones-Moreland (Evelyn Gern in "The Last Woman on Earth"), Regis Toomey (Longest screen kiss in cinema history until 1988 (with Jane Wyman) as Capt. Joe Radcliffe in "You're In the Army Now"), Pamela Searle (Miss England in 1959, and 3rd-Runner-Up in Miss Universe), Harvey Korman (Leading Man on "The Carol Burnett Show") [This is the second episode with multiple writers (the first being 1.8, "Legacy for Lucia"), and both were very good - this one was, admittedly, a bit fanciful, perhaps "overly optimistic," but still the product of a *lot* of hard work.)] 1.14 - "Play It Glissando" - Directed by Lewis Allen (Director of "Suddenly"), Written by Stirling Silliphant (12) Featuring Anne Francis (Altaira in "Forbidden Planet"), Jack Lord (Steve McGarrett on "Hawaii Five-O"), Harold J. Stone (Lieutenant Jack Noonan in "Lamb to the Slaughter" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (11)), Barbara Bostock (Carol Parker on "Love on a Rooftop") [An interesting study into the life of a beloved genius, which often manifests as the life of a lonely savant, only able to function on stage, and not in the real world. Jack Lord plays the role of a world-class jazz trumpet player, who seems to be not as nice of a guy off-stage as he is on-stage.] 1.15 - "The Clover Throne" - Directed by Arthur Hiller (2), Written by Herman Meadow (Creator of "Have Gun - Will Travel") Featuring Jack Warden (James A. Corry in "The Lonely" and McGarry in "The Mighty Casey" on "The Twilight Zone" (16), Juror #7 in "12 Angry Men," Emmy Award Winner for Outstanding Performance as George Halas in "Brian's Song," Academy Award Nominee for Best Supporting Actor (2) as Lester Karpf in "Shampoo" and Max Corkle in "Heaven Can Wait"), Anne Helm (Holly Jones in "Follow That Dream"), Arthur Batanides (The Police Sergeant in "The Jokester" and Police Detective in "I'll Take Care of You" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (12), Leader in "Mr. Denton on Doomsday" and Tabal in "Mirror" on "The Twilight Zone" (17), Lieutenant Ken Galvin on "Specimen Unknown" on "The Outer Limits" (4), Lieutenant D'Amato in "That Which Survives" on "Star Trek" (xx)), DeForest Kelley (Dr. Leonard H. "Bones" McKoy on "Star Trek" (xx)) [I can't believe I'm saying this, because I'm usually completely put off by people like "Sweet Thing," but this has been one of my favorite episodes - it's an episode where "the end justifies the means," and if you see it, you'll understand why I say this. I'm jaded as hell, and hard to dupe, but boy oh boy was I duped - and the foreshadowing was *all there* the entire time (the fence - you'll know what I mean when the closing credits roll). This episode alone makes me want to see "Have Gun - Will Travel" because writer Herman Meadow wrote both. If you're not watching the series in order, this wouldn't be a bad place to start - just don't be too put off by Sweet Thing and hang in there.] 1.16 - "Fly Away Home, Part 1" - Directed by Arthur Hiller (3), Written by Stirling Silliphant (13) Featuring Michael Rennie (Klaatu in "The Day the Earth Stood Still"), Dorothy Malone (Academy Award Winner for Best Supporting Actress as Marylee Hadley in "Written on the Wind"), Cathy Lewis (Deirdre Thompson on "Hazel" (2)), Bert Remsen (Star in "Nashville"), Jenny Maxwell (Ellie Corbett in "Blue Hawaii") [Crop-dusting airplane crashes, field hand opens up plane and helps injured pilot out, pilot screams to field hand: "Don't stand there like a fool; get back before she explodes!," field hand backs off, pilot starts to stagger away from the plane but passes out, field hand runs back to pilot and helps him regain consciousness and limp away to a safer distance, airplane explodes, pilot turns to field hand and says, "Cigarette?" That's in the first *ninety seconds* after the opening credits. At the end of Part 1, I wouldn't exactly call this a "gripping tale," but there are some intriguing questions that need to be addressed.] 1.17 - "Fly Away Home, Part 2" - Directed by Arthur Hiller (4), Written by Stirling Silliphant (14) Featuring Michael Rennie (2), Dorothy Malone (2), Cathy Lewis (2), Bert Remsen (2), Jenny Maxwell (2), Ford Rainey (Electrician's Mate 2nd. Class Harris in "The Sand Pebbles") [I'm pretty sure that - unless special effects in 1961 were a heck of a lot better than I'm aware of, Martin Milner really *was* being filmed in the back seat of an airplane, not that that's any great stunt, but it's something. I'm writing this as I'm watching, and I'm about nine minutes into Part 2, but because of "The Clover Throne," I'm starting to wonder if Dora (the owner of the crop-dusting company, because her husband was killed in a sulfur-application accident) may not be as crazy as she seems, thinking her husband is still alive, nursing his burns somewhere - still, this is pure conjecture on my part, with absolutely no evidence to back it up with. My God I wish I had contact with George Maharis' acting coach - there's something that he does that irks the living hell out of me, and he does it consistently - whenever he's watching an act on stage (which is *often* in this series), and wants to show approval to the camera, he has this annoying little shake-of-the-head, like Gee Whiz that's great! Am I the only person in the world who notices this? The scene with Summers (Michael Rennie) brushing the barn with the inflammable sulphur, causing a life-ending explosion, is absolutely incredible considering the tools available to cinematographers in 1961 - it remains to be seen what and why, but wow - what a scene: The drama reminds me of Season 4, Episode 2 of "The Twilight Zone" - "The Thirty Fathom Grave," except instead of the crew of the submarine calling muster on Chief Bell, Summers almost appears to be calling muster on himself - there are only eight minutes left to this two-part episode, and I'm very much looking forward to its resolution. After watching the entire two-part episode, all I can say is that it is so complex that I don't even know what to use for photographs - is it "great?" I don't think so, but for weekly television? Yeah, it's pretty darned good - it was nearly as long as a movie, but if I had seen it as a movie, I'd most likely have been disappointed; as a TV series, it's very impressive - I can't imagine how they possibly did this in two weeks.] 1.18 - "Sleep on Four Pillows" - Directed by Ted Post (Director of 4 episodes of "Twilight Zone" (18), "Beneath the Planet of the Apes," and "Magnum Force"), Written by Stirling Silliiphant (15) Featuring Patty McCormack (Academy Award Nominee for Best Supporting Actress as Rhoda Penmark in "The Bad Seed"), Larry Gates (Doc Baugh in "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof"), Marianne Stewart (Town Gossip in "Hush, Hush, Sweet Charlotte") John Berardino (Major League Baseball Player, 1939-1952, World Series Champion in 1948) [Oof. Out of the first eighteen episodes, this one may have been my least-favorite. It was waffling back-and-forth between being serious, then farcical, then silly, then worrisome, then farcical again, to just plain lame. Unless you're watching all the episodes, you can skip this one - I was so desperately hoping something interesting might come out of it, but the exact opposite happened, and it was a waste of time. You can skip "Sleep on Four Pillows" unless you're a completist or a masochist (and I'm not sure there's much difference between the two).] 1.19 - "An Absence of Tears" - Directed by Alvin Ganzer (2), Written by Stirling Silliphant (16) Featuring Martha Hyer (Academy Award Nominee for Best Supporting Actress (2) as Gwen French in "Some Came Running"), Rin Tin Tin II - Unrelated to Rin Tin Tin, Born as Golden Boy, Jr. (Rin Tin Tin on "The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin"), Herb Armstrong (Waiter in "Cape Fear"), Joseph Ruskin (Master Thrall Galt in "The Gamesters of Triskellion" on "Star Trek"), Paul Richards (Attacker in "Kiss Me Deadly") [The opening of this really hurt to watch, as it seems that Donna Stevens (Martha Hyer) was literally "Just Married," and lost her husband in a senseless gas-station robbery. I once dated a blind girl, and know first-hand the cruel dependence they must have on the people they're with, many of whom take advantage of them, or take them for granted - they're willing to take risks that none other of us would take, because they have to. This episode was okay, but it really didn't have enough material to fill the entire hour - they had to pad it some, probably assuming that the novelty of a beautiful blind woman would be enough to do it with.] 1.20 - "Like a Motherless Child" - Directed by David Lowell Rich (Director of "Madame X"), Written by - Teleplay: Howard Rodman (Co-writer of screenplay for "Coogan's Bluff"), Story: Betty Andrews (Writer of "The Education of Sarah Jane" and "Odds for Big Red" on "Have Gun - Will Travel") Featuring Sylvia Sidney (Mrs. Verloc in "Sabotage," Aunt Marion in "Damien: Omen II"), Jack Weston (Charlie Farnsworth in "The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street" and Julius Moorner in "The Bard" on "The Twilight Zone" (19), Carlino in "Wait until Dark," Danny Zimmer in "The Four Seasons," Max Kellerman in "Dirty Dancing") [There's one scene in "Like a Motherless Child" where Sylvia Sidney almost mockingly looks at Buz and says, "Poor Baby," as he asks her if he can come back and see her that evening. Buz, you'll remember, was raised in an orphanage, and Sylvia Sidney's character chose to give her son away when he was two-months old - he's an orphan; she willingly caused the existence of an orphan. She keeps saying, "Poor Baby" to him, but after about ten repetitions of this, it's clear that her tone is going from "mocking" to "loving" and they both see in each other the one person who was most-lacking from their lives. The picture above occurs towards the end of the scene, when she has completely broken down, and Buz has capitulated as well. This was, by far, the most "different" - not better, not worse; just different - Route 66 episode I've seen, and I would absolutely *not* recommend it to the first-time (or even the fifth-time) viewer of the series - it was very, very out of character, but for the seasoned viewer, it had a lot to like (and a lot not to like).] 1.21 - "Effigy in Snow" - Directed by Alvin Ganzer (3), Written by Stirling Silliphant (17) Featuring Scott Marlowe (Eliot Gray in "The Throwback" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (13), Jory Peters in "It Crawled out of the Woodwork," André in "The Forms of the Things Unknown" on "The Outer Limits" (5)), Jeanne Bal (Nancy Crater in "The Man Trap" on "Star Trek"), Mark Tapscott (Lieutenant in "Still Valley" on "The Twilight Zone" (20)), George_Macready, (3 episodes of "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (14), Hillary Prine in "The Ordeal of Mrs. Snow" on "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour" (3), Dr. Bixler in "The Long Morrow" on "The Twilight Zone" (21), Larry K. Hillerman in "The Invisibles" and Dr. Marshall in "Production and Decay of Strange Particles" on "The Outer Limits" (6), William Hendricks in "Night Gallery") [If I remember correctly, this is the first photo that has come from the cold (no pun intended, honest) open.] 1.22 - "Eleven, the Hard Way" - Directed by William A. Graham (Director of "Guyana Tragedy: The Story of Jim Jones"), Written by George Clayton Johnson (Writer of "I'll Take Care of You" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," 6 episodes of "The Twilight Zone" (22), "Ocean's Eleven," "Logan's Run," and "The Man Trap" on "Star Trek" (xx)) 1.23 - "Most Vanquished, Most Victorious" - Directed by William D. Faralla (Production Manager of "The Wild Bunch"), Written by Stirling Silliphant (18) Featuring Beatrice Straight as Kitty Chamberlain (Academy Award Winner for Best Supporting Actress (3) as Louise Schumacher in "Network"), Royal Dano as Dr. Clemente (Deputy Sheriff Calvin Wiggs in "The Trouble with Harry," Martin Ross in "My Brother, Richard" and Mr. Atkins in "Party Line" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (15), Mr. Miley in "Change of Address" on "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour" (4)), Pat DeSimone as Cazador (Tony Minetta in "Dino"), Frank de Kova as Davey Briggs (Pedro in "A Personal Matter" and Señor Vargas in "Strange Miracle" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (16), The Man in "The Mechanic") [This is a very watchable episode, but one which operates under a far-fetched premise. Perhaps the most interesting thing is how it interweaves the West Side Story motif, but I'm afraid that despite it being a guilty pleasure, it's just too unrealistic to hit home - Todd just would not get that emotionally involved so quickly, being twenty-years removed from a situation. Still, judge for yourselves - the acting is good, there are a couple high-powered fight scenes, and also several sub-motifs wrapped in the overarching story line of "finding Carol."] 1.24 - "Don't Count Stars - Directed by Paul Wendkos (Director of "The Taking of Flight 847: The Uli Derickson Story"), Written by Stirling Silliphant (19) Featuring Dan Duryea as Mike McKay (Al Denton in "Mr. Denton on Doomsday" on "The Twilight Zone" (23), "Waco" Johnny Dean in "Winchester '73," China Smith on "China Smith"), Susan Melvin as Linda McKay (Trudy in "Ladybug, Ladybug"), Vaughn Taylor as Frank Hammond (George Lowery in "Psycho," Mr. Judson in "The Incredible World of Horace Ford" on "The Twilight Zone" (26)), Randall Latimer in "The Guests" on "The Outer Limits" (7) Good Samaritan in "In Cold Blood"), Mary Jackson as Judge Mary Lindstrom (Mrs. Wilson in "Mink" on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (17), Miss Pepper in "Of Late, I Think of Cliffordville" on "The Twilight Zone" (27), Mrs. McRae in "I, Robot" on "The Outer Limits" (8), Emily Baldwin on "The Waltons," ) [I thought sure I recognized the drunk man that Tod and Buz pulled from the water, and sure enough, it was Dan Duryea, who played a virtually identical drunk in "Mr Denton on Doomsday" on "The Twilight Zone." Of particular note is that "Don't Count Stars" is the earliest episode of anything (television, movies, or what-have-you), where an extended reference is made to a high-level profession - in this case Judge Lindstrom - where the name, "Judge Lindstrom," is repeatedly mentioned for nearly twenty minutes, before a pronoun is used in a conversation, completely without fanfare: In this case, the pronoun is "she." I would be very interested in knowing if anything earlier than this episode (Apr 28, 1961) so casually revealed a typically male profession being held by a female - I must repeat: To this episode's credit, there was absolutely no drama, scary organ music, or shocked looks upon people's faces; it was simply mentioned in the course of normal dialog, about twenty minutes into the episode ... "she."]
  2. I just started two new forums: Colleges and High Schools, which are only visible to members (just for a little extra member-privacy). I'm hopeful that this will bring our membership closer together through common life experiences. We can even start a "Military Brat" thread for those of you who were shuttled around during your youth. I went to Springbrook, in Silver Spring, MD - yep, I'm a native Washingtonian. Any other Blue Devils here?
  3. I've had this weird "thing" lately where I've been watching SE1 EP1 of classic American television shows - I guess I was so ignorant, for so long, that this is sort-of like taking a post-WWII pop culture course. *Everyone* but me at Clemson used to gather round the TV and watch "The Andy Griffith Show"; before last week, I had never before seen a single episode (my friends also called me a "Yankee"). The one thing that stood out to me in "The New Housekeeper" is six-year-old Ron Howard. I almost always find whiny children on TV to be incorrigible brats, but Howard - who was certainly whiny in this episode - somehow managed to be cute. I'm still not sure what it was about him that made me not detest him, but he was a real talent, even at age six.
  4. Jonathan Gold was the best food critic in the United States. "Los Angeles Times Restaurant Critic Jonathan Gold Dies at 57" by Andrea Chang on latimes.com
  5. Coming into tonight's game against the Houston Texans, the Kansas City Chiefs were the final remaining undefeated team in the NFL. After tonight's game, they're still undefeated - they are incredible. Their rookie running back, Kareem Hunt, is not only the leading candidate for the 2017 NFL Rookie of the Year; he's still seriously being mentioned in the NFL MVP conversation. Kareem Hunt has made the Chiefs' career-journeyman quarterback, Alex Smith, the best quarterback in the NFL so far this season - really! Look it up! Alex Smith! After five games, the man has 11 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. Quoted from NFL.com: Through five games, Smith has as many interceptions as he does losses: zero. Give him the respect he deserves. The Chiefs are so impressive that they forced several players into my medium-term memory - one of whom is the fastest player in the NFL: Tyreek Hill, who can achieve speeds of nearly 23 mph. As I write this with 1:13 left in the game, KC is beating Houston 42-26. They're the better of the two teams, and fully deserved to win this game despite the unfortunate injury of J.J. Watt. (Edit: The final score was 42-34.) Hat's off to you, KC.
  6. As a prerequisite to this thread, please read the first post in The World Series thread. I would recommend not reading any further until you do. --- Assuming you've read that post, I'd now like to make a case for the *wrong* Second Baseman having been given the 1960 World Series MVP Award. The award was given to Bobby Richardson of the New York Yankees. The MVP Award didn't exist until 1955, and every year before 1960, it had been given to a pitcher; this was the first year (and the only year in history) it would go to a second baseman - the question is: *Which* second baseman? There is no doubt that Richardson had a tremendous World Series, batting .367, with 12 RBIs and a Grand Slam in the seven-game series. However, Richardson is the only player from a losing team ever to win the award, and I would argue that he was only the *second*-most-valuable second baseman playing in this series: Bill Mazeroski deserved the award. Mazeroski wasn't some little-known player like Rick Dempsey (in 1983) who had a fantastic World Series (no disrespect meant towards Dempsey, who was a better-than-average major leaguer); no, Mazeroski was a 10-time all-star (in 7 different seasons), an 8-time Gold Glove winner, and is in the Hall of Fame, primarily for his defense. All baseball fans know about "the most famous home run ever hit" - along with the 1993 shot by Joe Carter, the only walk-off home run ever to end an entire *season* (and still the only one in Game 7), giving the Pirates their first World Series championship since 1925! But what the average fan doesn't know is that Mazeroski batted .320 that series, and in Game 1, hit *another* game-winning home run: This one wasn't a walk-off home run; in fact, it happened in the 4th inning, but it provided the winning run in the game - that makes 2-out-of-4 games that Mazeroski won for the Pirates with home runs. The three games the Yankees won were blow-outs, by scores of 16-3, 10-0, and 12-0. They didn't *need* Richardson's RBIs; the Pirates, on the other hand, couldn't have won the series without Mazeroski - their four wins happened by scores of 6-4, 3-2, 5-2, and in the deciding game, 10-9: Both of Mazeroski's homers were indispensable, and Pittsburgh would have lost without them. I guess the New York publicity machine won the award for Richardson, but the real MVP of the 1960 World Series was Bill Mazeroski. If there's any doubt remaining, Richardson's OPS was 1.054 for the series; Mazeroski's was .960 - yes, Richardson's was stronger, but it wasn't *that* much stronger (Mazeroski got hits in 6 out of the 7 games). More importantly: Richardson committed errors in each of the first two games; Mazeroski didn't commit an error the entire series.
  7. I have every intention to watch the classic, 1954, Japanese film "Seven Samurai" by Akira Kurosawa, and since I've been riding so high in the saddle with American Westerns recently, I decided to watch the classic, 1960 remake first: "The Magnificent Seven," pretty-much knowing that Seven Samurai will be better, and possibly a lot better. Now, that I've watched it, I hope "Seven Samurai" is a *lot* better, because "The Magnificent Seven" was merely a good - not great - American Western, even though you'll hear otherwise from plenty of critics. Perhaps I think so because I've watched *so* many great American Westerns lately, or perhaps movie critics are like so many restaurant critics - going for big celebrities, lots of PR, tons of hype, free meals, and God knows what else. Of the so-called "great" American Westerns I've seen, only "Shane" has disappointed me more. Don't get me wrong: "The Magnificent Seven" isn't a bad movie; it's just not a great movie ... it falls somewhere in-between. It was worth watching for me only because I'm recently fixated on the genre, and also as a preparatory exercise for "Seven Samarai." Only two of the seven (plus the villain) get billing before the movie title: Yul Brynner (Chris Adams), Eli Wallach (the bandit Calvera), and Steve McQueen (Vin Tanner). The other four, Charles Bronson (Bernardo O'Reilly), Robert Vaughn (Lee, the war veteran), Brad Dexter (the mercenary), James Coburn (the knife fighter), and Horst Buchholtz (the kid, Chico), each had their own screen, but were presented after the title. The movie was filmed entirely in Mexico, which helped; I only wish the Mexican actors were either better-trained, or didn't use English as a second language, because it really showed up - granted, this is how it would be in real life, but in contrast with the suave, dramatically and well-versed Americans, the difference in acting - particularly the diction - was rather dramatic. Wow, my first impression is that Calvera is a lot like Negan on "The Walking Dead." *** SPOILERS FOLLOW *** The most beautiful scene in the movie was Harry Luck's (Brad Dexter's) dying scene, in Chris Adams' (Yul Brynner's) arms. Each of "The Magnificent Seven" took this low-paying ($20 for six weeks) job for different reasons. Luck's primary reason was that he had always thought that there was something more in it for him than just a measly $20. He said to Chris, "I'd hate to die a sucker. We didn't come here just to keep an eye on a lotta corn and chili peppers, did we? ...." Chris answered, knowing Chris had mere moments to live, "Yes, Harry. You had it pegged right all along," and then told him there was a half-million dollars in buried gold, from which his share would be about $70,000 - it was all a lie to make Harry die with a smile on his face, which he did. Here are the following two stills, less than one-second apart from each other: Make note: Despite Harry Luck being a mercenary, he was a good person, and the "little white lie" told by Chris was entirely appropriate, and absolutely compelling. Harry's last words, delivered during the first photo, were, "I'll be damned." Chris's words, delivered immediately after Harry died, were, "Maybe you won't be." If only the rest of the film could have been this profound, it would have been a great movie. "The Turbulent Three": Nobody in the Seven was more dimwitted, or more wise, than Chico (Horst Buchholtz). As dumb as dirt, he was the only of the seven who walked away with First Prize. For all its hype, and for all its stars, "The Magnificent Seven" was simply not a great film; it was a good film, but it lacked coherence, and dare I say logic? Now I'm *really* hoping that "Seven Samurai" simply didn't transfer well to the Western genre - with the stars and the budget this film had, it should have been absolutely fantastic; it wasn't. It's a good movie, and worth seeing, and that's as far as I'm willing to go - what I'm really hoping is that it will deepen my appreciation for "Seven Samurai," but now I"m wondering whether or not I should see "A Bug's Life" first as well. I hate to come right out and say, "All the critics are wrong," because Rotten Tomatoes uses either a thumbs-up or thumbs-down model, and I have no problem giving this a "thumbs up," but once you get into more nuance than a simple, binary, "yes-or-no," once again, I find myself agreeing with Dave Kehr more than any other active critic: And I know I lack the specific experience to come right out and say that all the professional movie critics are wrong, but ... all the professional movie critics are wrong.
  8. Mama Ayesha's. I've always been intrigued by the location (off by itself at the end of the Ellington Bridge). I now live right behind it, but still haven't made it over. Anyone ever been?
  9. I'd never seen a Rat Pack movie before, and only knew of "Ocean's 11" by name (this 1960 film was remade as "Ocean's Eleven" with an ensemble cast of mega-stars in 2001. This is a "heist" film taking place in Las Vegas, where Danny Ocean (Frank Sinatra) reassembles his WWII 82nd Airborne Division buddies for "one more mission." The number of recognizable faces (Henry Silva, for example) in Ocean's 11 is remarkable (the same can be said for the 2001 remake, although I've never seen it - when Andy Garcia is the 5th-most famous actor/actress in a movie, you know you've spent some money on salaries). Rapid-fire dialog was extremely popular in the 40s and 50s (think: "His Girl Friday"), and there are a few wonderful examples here as well: Vince Massler (Buddy Lester) approaches Danny Ocean (Frank Sinatra) and Jimmy Foster (Peter Lawford), worried about the caper, and this amusing exchange takes place in less than two seconds: "I can't do it boys. I got my wife to think of." "Think of her rich." "Think of me dead." The dialog in this movie is not only "rapid-fire," but it's classic "rat-pack" - cornball gangster talk like something out of a Mickey Spillane novel: Picture Mike Hammer on speed. The drinks are fast, the women are furious, and this is classic 1950s pulp that simply cannot be replicated: Even though I haven't seen the 2001 version, there's no way George Clooney could pull this off - he just doesn't have the gangster in him. It's not even a positive trait; it just is what it is, and it's a product of its time - I'm only 45 minutes into the movie, and I'm surprised nobody has used the term "doll-face." --- Okay, I finished the movie (I even rewatched the first half, because I took a couple of days off), and my assessment is that it's really a pretty awful film, and should only be watched by Rat Pack devotees and completists. This is a 2:10 movie, and the entire first half - maybe a little longer - is devoid of anything, with the possible exception of some character development. You're basically "getting to know" Danny Ocean and his ten friends who were deployed together in WWII, and it is *slow going*, and I mean *boring*. The payoff in Ocean's 11 comes in the last ten minutes, when a genuinely great twist ending will leave your jaw hanging open, but you have to "suffer and endure" up until that point. If I had to pick a "least favorite" and "most favorite" character, respectively, it would be Akim Tamiroff (in a needless, comic-relief role as Spiros Acebos, "the big boss"), and Cesar Romero (as Duke Santos, the man who *nobody* wants to mess with - this film does a good job at making him look enormous in physical stature (he was 6'3" but seemed even taller)). I'm very curious to hear from some Rat Pack fans about why I'm wrong. I have never seen a movie with more stars in it that flopped so badly - actually, it wasn't a "flop" so much as that it was just dull, dull, dull. We were literally halfway through the movie, and didn't know anything at all about what was going to happen - people were just sitting around, chatting, drinking, and shooting pool. Recommended for historical purposes only; not recommended for anyone wanting to watch a good film. The closing shot is absolutely fantastic, with The Pack walking by the viewers. The following video shows the ending, but doesn't spoil anything about the main plot of the movie - still, since it's such a cool scene, I'll mark it as a spoiler. If you watch it, do note the *very* tongue-in-cheek, hilarious billboard in the final moments, which has nothing whatsoever to do with the film: *** SPOILERS FOLLOW *** To see why I'm so anal about tagging threads, click on Richard Boone above - we're building something beautiful here.
  10. The Euro 2016 hasn't been all that exciting. In the group stage, teams seemed more focused on defense, as some of the third place teams will make it to the knock-out stage. And there are more shoddy teams this year so the groupings aren't particularly exciting. I'm all for Iceland (and other teams) making the Euro for the first time but they simply don't have much talent. And has any country ever had a significant portion of their population travel to a foreign sporting event (I think entire Iceland has 300,000, and it seems like most of them are in France for Euro 2016). What about all the flares thrown on the pitch and the clash of fans?
  11. And it isn't exactly like they're "bad" this year - their current record is 16-11 - but that streak of consecutive years being in the Top 25 is ridiculous. "Lady Vols Fall Out of AP Poll for First Time Since 1985" on espn.go.com
  12. "SI" is an abbreviated abbreviation (!) for the French words Système International d'Unités (International System of Units). It is the modern version of the Metric System (which was first introduced by the First French Republic (*) in 1799!) The United States officially sanctioned the Metric System in 1866, but remains the only industrialized country in the world that doesn't use it as their official system of measurement (think about that for a moment). SI was first introduced in 1960, and is built entirely on only seven "base units" of measurement - the more-complicated measurements use what are known as "derived units" which are nothing more than combinations of the base units. The Base Units Amount of Substance: Mole Electric Current: Ampere Length: Metre Luminous Intensity: Candela Mass: Kilogram Temperature: Kelvin Time: Second When I began this post, I was going to go into a great deal of depth, but just being familiar with these seven things - what they actually mean - will put you on the fast track towards having a scientific mind. How many of us know, for example, what a "candela" or a "mole" is? Isotopes for Dummies will help you with moles (not much, but sort-of like "derived units" build on "base units," so it shall be with posts in this forum). Does McDonald's still have a Quarter-Pounder? Well, it turns out that 1 Newton is about 1/4 pound (.224809 pounds to be more precise), so you can remember this by going up to a McDonald's drive-thru window and ordering a "Newtoner with Cheese." A Newton is a derived unit (which you won't see in the list above), but I couldn't resist throwing that one in. It's remarkable that virtually *every* measurement can be based off of these seven. Something as basic-sounding as Speed, for example, is a derived unit - not a base unit - using "metres-per-second" as its formula, thereby combining two of the base units. The Newton is a measure of Force (and Weight), and combines *three* of the base units: Mass, Length, and Time - imagine thinking of a Quarter-Pounder with Cheese in these terms - it's not difficult to imagine that certain measurements can get extremely complex. (*) I'm sorry to get off-track, but Beethoven's 3rd Symphony (the "Eroica," or the "Heroic") was completed in 1804, and originally named "Buonaparte" after Napoléon I, aka Napoléon Bonaparte, for Bonaparte's democratic ideals in leading the First French Republic (1792-1804). But when Bonaparte declared himself Emperor (also in 1804), thus ending the First French Republic and beginning the First French Empire (1804-1815), the politically astute Beethoven didn't like it one bit, and changed the name to a generic term: The "Heroic Symphony." Q: What happened when Napoléon went to Mount Olive? A: Popeye got pissed.
  13. It almost hurts to see the Lakers at 12-51 this season, after going 21-61 last year. Still, they're a championship franchise, and they'll be back, eventually. I hope. Today, I happened to be looking at the 2003-2004 LA Lakers. Their four leading scorers in points-per-game were: 1. Kobe Bryant 2. Shaquille O'Neal 3. Gary Payton 4. Karl Malone For those of you who are counting, these four account for: 1. 56 NBA All-Star Games 2. 32 All-NBA First-Teams 3. 21 All-NBA Defensive First-Teams 4. 9 NBA All-Star MVPs 5. 4 NBA MVPs 6. 4 NBA Scoring Champions and ... 7. 120,660 Points Scored (Kobe will add some more to this figure by year-end) Consider that only 5 players in NBA history have scored over 30,000 points in their careers, and these 4 averaged over that amount! This is truly awesome; however, the four played in only 20 games together that season - Malone went down with a knee injury, and Bryant was distracted by legal issues. Nevertheless, they got to the NBA Finals, losing to the Detroit Pistons in a series that featured a match-up between two ex-Clemson standouts, Horace Grant and Elden Campbell (well, I won't say it "featured" the match-up; merely that it existed).
  14. I think there is a whole lot of myth-making involved in the story of how Ed Wynn blew everything in every rehearsal and then miraculously gave one of the most affecting performances of all time when they did "Requiem for a Heavyweight" live; the story seems unlikely, as just about anyone who ever performed in front of an audience can attest. Nonetheless, "The Man in the Funny Suit," the institutionalization of the myth that ran on Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse in 1960, with the full participation of both Wynns and Rod Serling, among others, is totally worth watching. I commend it to your attention:
  15. Frankie Valli was possessed of one of the most singular and astonishing instruments in the history of rock-n-roll: his voice. There has never been anything quite like it. So the songs might be kind of silly, but you don't have to wonder why they sold so many millions of records. (Between his work with The Four Seasons and his solo recordings, he had 39 top-40 hits.) "Sherry" (1962) "Walk Like a Man" (1963) "Working My Way Back to You" (1966)
  16. I've sort of run out of steam with the 20th-century chanteuses I was highlighting. Lots and lots of recordings to listen to, of course, but not a lot of my favorite female jazz singers I haven't posted about at least once. So what about the great rock-n-roll singers? I find that almost all of them were men. I'm setting aside R&B and soul singers, like Aretha Franklin, one of the greatest singers of the 20th century (to anyone with any discernment), and ditto James Brown, say, or Otis Redding. It's not a matter of race: Little Richard and Chuck Berry, along with Jimi Hendrix and others, certainly inhabited the world of rock-n-roll, but it became more and more dominated by white artists as time went by in the 50s and into the 60s, and the only black rock-n-roll singer whose star shines in the highest firmament to me is Little Richard, of whom more later. The prominent female rock singers, like Grace Slick and Janis Joplin, are largely over-rated, in my view. Joplin might have become a really great singer, but her career was so terribly short. Probably my favorite female rocker is Marianne Faithfull, but it's hard to put her in the same category as the greatest male r-n-r singers, such as John Lennon. Charlie Pierce famously maintains that the only wrong answer to "what's your favorite Beatles song?" is "Revolution Number 9", a point of view I'm in sympathy with, but can't agree with in the detail. "Revolution Number 9" isn't a song, but there are songs from the white album that are wrong answers: "Piggies" and "Oh-bla-di", for example. But the white album also includes much of John Lennon's best work with the Beatles. Not just his best writing, but his best singing. Take as an extravagantly great example one of my very favorite Beatles songs, probably not well known to generations younger than mine, but which features one of John's most wonderful vocal performances, among other things - "Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except Me and My Monkey" (1968): I loved him as if I knew him.
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