July 31, 2014

Around the Dial

A variety of sources to spotlight the day - let's get started with this Awful Announcing interview with British soccer announcer Jon Champion.  I referenced this at the other blog today, but it's worth sharing here as well.  Money quote: "I was taught very early on that the picture is so powerful, you can’t hope to compete with it, all you can hope is to occasionally augment it, and add additional information and improve the overall viewing experience for the person at home watching the telecast."  From your lips to God's ears (and those of most American announcers), Jon.

Lassie is another of those shows that I watched when I was a kid, but don't have much time for today.  (Let's just ignore the autographed picture I have of Lassie and Corey.)  But Rick at Classic Film and TV Cafe has a very good interview with Jon Provost, who played Timmy, perhaps Lassie's most famous companion.  I really do love how accessible so many of these classic TV stars really are.

Joanna at Christmas TV History is continuing her month-long Christmas in July feature.  They're all great entries so it's hard to link to just one for this week (and mine was a couple of weeks ago), but I'll take Dominic Caruso's entry, not least because he cites one of my favorite movies (which I'm ashamed to admit I left off of my own list), The Man Who Came to Dinner.  If you haven't seen that movie, don't wait for Christmas - see it now!

Speaking of favorites, one of my favorite TV lines has to be from Rocky the Flying Squirrel; whenever he and Bullwinkle run into Boris and Natasha, Rocky invariably can be heard saying, "That face - where have I seen that face?"  Well, while you won't see Boris in this lineup, David at Comfort TV does provide us with this handy guide to the familiar faces that make up classic TV character actors.

I first became a fan of Doctor Who during our PBS station's run of the Tom Baker/Louise Jamison episodes, and one of the best-known of that era was "The Talons of Weng-Chiang."  It's a great period piece but, as Cult TV Blog points out, there was a lot of wasted potential to that story.  Agree, though, that Tom Baker is at his infuriating best.

One of the best of the Masterpiece Mysteries over the years has been David Suchet's definitive portrayal of Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot.  Random Ramblings of a Broadway, Film & TV Fan reminds us that with the recent episode "The Big Four," we're now on the verge of what it seemed would never happen, all those years ago - the completion of the entire Poirot canon.

How Sweet it Was is sweet indeed this week, with a link to a piece on 10 classic TV shows and where to watch them.  I'm not surprised that The New York Times' Neil Genzlinger isn't a fan of them: (1) the Times is a day late and a dollar short on almost everything they cover anyway, and (2) the reasons he gives are the exact reasons why I don't read The New York Times.

Classic TV Sports is a site I always follow, since it covers two of my favorite things: television and sports.  This week Jeff borrows a page from my Saturday TV Guide reviews, as he takes a look at a 1980 issue of The Sporting News.  I used to be a subscriber to TSN, back in the day, and I know for a fact that I had this issue.  Sports was a lot more fun back then, at least in my eyes, and there were few publications better at covering it than The Sporting News.  Heck, I cancelled my subscription to Sports Illustrated to get it, and that with SI's swimsuit issue!

Finally, just a reminder that the It's About TV Facebook page is up!  Go there and follow, and as it evolves over the next few weeks, I'll be adding more exclusive content there, as well as asking for your ideas on future stories.

That's it for now - see you back here on Saturday!

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