DFHC 3/19/2011

item 1 >>> Now Playing…   Travels of Jaimie McPheeters/Osmond Bros. And please turn to item 3.

item 2 >>> LQQK @ †h∆†! Scarecrow of Romney Marsh Dr. Christopher Syn, alias The Scarecrow…a vicar named after sin, spelled differently, but still…that opened my eyes to some wider possibilities, I can tell you. Take this gold, share it among you! Didn’t even bother me that he rode thru the dead of night…on a white horse…that was just his style, brudda…

item 3 >>>  You Always Have Choices…More than 70 million viewers tuned in to CBS to see the Beatles on Ed Sullivan, February 9, 1964. Some, like me…and I got no complaints…were watching Disney on NBC and Patrick McGoohan as The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh. But what about ABC? That’s interesting for a number of reason. It was The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters…sort of a cross between Wagon Train and Little House on the Prairie. A very young Kurt Russell was Jaimie, who with his scalawag of a dad, Dan O’Herlihy, lit out for the territories from Paducah, Kentucky, one step ahead of the bill collectors. Wagon-master was Linc Murdock, played by Charles Bronson! And the Osmond Brothers sang the theme song…they portrayed the Kissel brothers…Micah, Leviticus, Deuteronomy and Lamentations (!!) They did a lot of singing on the show, very sharp 4-part folk harmonies. BTW, this was Alan, Jay, Merrill, and Wayne only. 7-year-old Donny had just joined the “family business” on The Andy Williams Show the year before.

item 4 >>> Adios, Kurt, Baby…Anyway, Kurt Russell was being groomed as the next heart-throb for the Tiger Beat set. And really, he can’t squawk…he’s had a pretty good run, boy and man, better than most. But what one blogger recalls was probability typical of what happened that Sunday night. Jaimie was her favorite show, it came on at 7:30. As 8 o’clock approached, she got into a fight with her older sister, who wanted to see the You-Know-Who’s. Their mother suggested they turn the channel over just for a few minutes…and when they did, this blogger quickly decided she’d rather watch this! But like I said, Kurt came thru OK…as did the Osmonds, when you think about it…Charles Bronson too…that’s Kurt there with the banjo…

item 5 >>>  Not to be confused with Advise and Consent, altho I can see how that might happen…When Jaimie wrapped up at 8:30, the second half of the Beatles was opposite Arrest and Trial. This was an early version of Law and Order. It was one of the few 90-minute series…in the first 45 minutes, cop Ben Gazzara made the arrest…during the 2nd half, DA Chuck Connors took over for the trial. Yeah, old “Mucus” McCain himself. This was a ploy that never worked very well…a western star transplanted into a present day cop/private eye show…remember Lorne Greene in Griff? But the one that always got me was when a male sitcom star was recast in a serious drama, or the other way around. A few that spring to mind…Jerry Paris on The Untouchables before The Dick Van Dyke Show…Robert Reed as E. G. Marshall’s son on The Defenders, then on to The Brady Bunch…and Donna Reed’s hubby transformed into the F. Lee Bailey-esque Judd, for the Defense…Carl Betz, remember? One of the strangest had to be Hugh Beaumont…before the role of Ward Cleaver on Beaver, he played mostly in B-movie crime and sci-fi roles, even several as gumshoe Michael Shayne. And he starred in an unsold pilot…it aired on one of those Summer replacement anthology series…as a private eye…Alias Mike Hercules. I’m sorry, Mike what again? Never seen it…wonder if it was totally serious…did he look like himself on the left, or on the right?

item 6 >>> Watching the Detectives…So Where’s Volume Two?…
Haven’t had so much fun in ages, watching all the old crime shows on this sumptuous set of CDs from Mill Creek Entertainment. List price is around $30, you can get it for a lot less, and it’s a steal. In terms of actors and actresses, you’ll recognize many of your old favorites, and a few people who pop up will really surprise you, my lips are sealed. Not for nothing, but if anybody looked more like a “bad guy” than Leo Gordon (right), I can’t imagine who it might have been. OK, the hat helps. One example of the transcendent coolness: a show called The Man Behind the Badge was an anthology, each week featuring a different figure in law enforcement, hosted and narrated by Charles Bickford. One particularly good episode was about the planned sabotage of an atomic bomber training missing, very nice plot twists, and 2 of the conspirators were named Saugus and Natick!  Written by a guy called Nelson Gidding…now don’t tell me he was born in Pasadena, or Singapore or someplace like that! I checked his bio…born in the Big Apple, but went to school at Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire…all righty then…

item 7 >>>  From the Ya-Can’t-Make-This-Stuff-Up Dept…You’d have to go a long way to find a better example of how far we’ve come, when someone like Owsley Stanley, LSD purveyor to the stars, gets a nearly half-page obit in the Wall Street Journal, of all places…but there you are. Died the last Sunday in a car crash in Australia.

item 8 >>>  Down on the Farm…I noted with regret that the Red Sox had demoted pitcher Stolmy Pimentel. Well, maybe he’ll be back for a cup of cappuccino.  But he’s soooooo close to having one of the all-time great baseball names…when I see it in print, it always looks at first like Stormy Pimentel…now that’s a moniker, I don’t care who you are. Right up there with Sandy Valdespino, Shooty Babitt, and Ozzie Chavarria, which always sounded to me like some sort of heartbreaking skin disease.

item 9 >>>  Natalie Wood Topless…O.M.G…Seriously, you might be a Baby Boomer if…in your family album, there are photos of little girls topless. I recall one in mine…my sister running thru a sprinkler on a hot Summer’s day, screaming, wearing a shower-cap to boot! Funny how things have “progressed” in the past 50 years. Dirty pictures are everywhere…”stag” movies at the drop of a hat, or the click of a mouse. Yet, I remember when Playboy and Penthouse were openly displayed on the newsstand…not any more. And the tiniest girl today has to wear a “top.” This feature is from LIFE magazine, Nov. 26, 1945…”New Movie Moppet”…

item 10 >>> We Don’t Need No Stinking Continuity…A while back I had a clip from the Beetle Bailey cartoon series…this was made in 1963, with Howard “Ernest T. Bass” Morris voicing Beetle, Alan Melvin as Sarge. Apparently some, but not all, of the episodes were written by the strip’s creator Mort Walker. And I daresay he didn’t draw ’em, sheesh. But talk about lapses in continuity…here we see Gen. Amos T. Halftrack going to a fancy officers’ ball, and who’s on his arm? Doesn’t look like wife Martha (left, yellow hair.) Well, let’s just say it’s his niece, and let it go at that, shall we?

Wicked Ballsy

But here’s the thing…many fine upstanding cartoonists have been known to let off a little steam, and draw some, shall we say, “frisky” cartoons, not for intended for publication. Except for some reason, Mort Walker has let his leak out…in fact, a book published in Scandinavia, where they’ve been Beetle Bailey crazy forever, features tons of his “special” strips…including this doozie…

shameless naked plugs unplugged, with no clothes on…

Podcasts at http://stolfpod.podbean.com and   http://thewholething.podbean.com

Other Daily blog at http://stolf.wordpress.com (the legendary Stolf’s Blog)

More bloggage at http://travelingcyst.blogspot.com and  http://www.examiner.com/retro-pop-culture-in-watertown/mark-john-astolfi

Resume at http://travelingcyst.blogspot.com/p/resume.html

Audio samples coming soon…or just check the podcasts…twc-rr so still über-blows turbo…

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