December 8, 2017

Around the dial

It's been a couple of weeks since we visited the classic TV blogosphere, what with my book review from last week, but we're back to normal today, with some great things for you to gander at.

The Hitchcock Project continues at bare-bones e-zine, with Jack giving us a rundown on the Francis and Marian Cockrell teleplay "The Gentleman From America," based on the short story by Michael Arlan. I keep pointing out these features because I really like what Jack does; not only does he give us a synopsis of the episode, he goes into detail on the original story, showing how the teleplay changes it in order to convert it to something appropriate for television, as well as giving us more fun facts. It's very well done, and quite different from what we generally read elsewhere.

I don't usually do sneak previews of upcoming stories, but tomorrow's TV Guide review names the top 40 TV stars of all time, and one of them appears in the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour episode "Lucy Wins a Racehorse," the subject of Aurora's review at Once Upon a Screen. 

The Avengers episode "The Positive-Negative Man" is one of John's favorites over at Cult TV Blog, and one of mine as well. (With some great comments from our own Mike Doran.) The Avengers rotated out of our Friday night spot a couple of years ago when we watched the final Steed-Tara episode, but reading these recaps makes me want to go back and start over again. Maybe in 2018...

I reviewed Adam-Michael James' "final episode" Bewitched novel last week; this week David at Comfort TV has a similar review. (The fact that we both liked it should settle the question for anyone thinking about purchasing it, don't you think?) And I really like the link back to David's first blog piece, “Does how a television show ends have any impact on its legacy?" That's something worth considering by itself.

At Christmas TV History, Joanna relates her experience in the 2017 Christmas Story Run- who knew? I'm no runner, but it sounds like a fun time - where else are you going to see all those pink rabbits running a distance race? And for good measure, check out this spot on Joanna's Christmas podcast appearances.

The Broadcasting Archives at the University of Maryland has an interesting bit on "the Hitchcock of the [radio] airwaves," William Spier - the longtime producer-director of the legendary radio series Suspense.

Speaking of radio, here's something from a couple months back that I just noticed, courtesy Faded Signals - a picture of Miami radio station WIOD, with the motto "Wonderful Isle of Dreams." That describes classic radio to a T, and what television is capable - though too frequently falling short - of doing.

Can you take one more radio story? You'd better, because The Chairman, Frank Sinatra himself, is in it. Martin Grams shares with us the time in 1949 when Sinatra appeared in the Christmas story "The Enchanted Ghost" on Inner Sanctum.

A moment of whimsy indeed (and who amongst us couldn't use a bit of it nowadays?) - Jodie at Garroway at Large gives us a clip of Dave with Kukla, Fran and Ollie. If you don't smile after watching that, you have no heart.

Did you know that, in the off-season, the legendary baseball star Jackie Robinson sold television sets? I didn't either, until I read it in Andrew's piece at The Lucky Strike Papers. That's right - in the olden days, athletes used to work in the off-season, oftentimes as car or insurance salesmen, in order to make ends meet. Now, instead of selling TVs, they can buy a television station.

TV Obscurities returns with another obscure sitcom, this one from the 1964-65 season. It's The Baileys of Balboa, starring Paul Ford, whom you ought to remember as Bilko's nemesis. I've certainly heard of the show, but didn't know all that much about it until this terrific article.

Hopefully, you'll now stay out of trouble until the next time we meet - tomorrow!  TV  

1 comment:

Thanks for writing! Drive safely!