Naked City - new 10DVD set coming in November

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Neil Brock, Aug 23, 2012.

  1. Charles Smith

    Charles Smith Extremely Talented Member
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    Messages:
    5,190
    Likes Received:
    1,168
    Location:
    Nor'east
    Real Name:
    Charles Smith
    You all have me to thank for this, as I finally got off the dime and made the effort to buy all the formerly released DVDs just this past year.
     
  2. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,823
    Likes Received:
    443
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    So I'm slowly going through this set - the complete series would probably take me years, and I get to the episode "The One Marked Hot Gives Cold" with Robert Duvall and... Holy Crap... it's a child molester story. Duvall is perfectly cast, and he's played some Boo weirdos in his careers, but yikes, the subtext of this episode, and the scene where he meets the father who gave him up to an orphanage (the father literally crawls across the floor toward him sniveling like a worm), it was just bizarre. Unbelievable how something like this was airing at the same period as Father Knows Best or Donna Reed.

    The year is 1962, and you quickly realize that around the same time, Duvall played quite the heroin junkie going cold turkey on sister show Route 66, and also played the 'affected' museum creep obsessed with a museum dollhouse in The Twilight Zone episode "The Miniature." But here I'm watching this episode wondering why this grown man is wandering around the zoo and the park with this 12 year-old girl and thinking... really... does this mean... are they really going to go there... yep. No wonder the sniveling dad heads for the hills in the end.

    Many of these episodes have been so-so. The Best-of set seems to be more about the guest star than the quality of the episode, but there is some awesomely provocative stuff in here. The episode just prior to this in the set was Stirling Silliphant's very eclectic and disturbing meditation on the death penalty "Prime of Life" as Burke has to witness a murderer he caught die in the electric chair. Two extremely disturbing but riveting dramatic episodes in a row. Just had to comment.
     
  3. JoeDoakes

    JoeDoakes Cinematographer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2009
    Messages:
    2,513
    Likes Received:
    655
    Real Name:
    Ray
    They did a couple of child molester radio shows on Dragnet, but I wasn't aware of a tv counterpart.
     
  4. John DeAngelis

    John DeAngelis Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2008
    Messages:
    174
    Likes Received:
    5
    I think your characterization of the Robert Duvall episode of Naked City as a "child molester story" is a bit of an unfair simplification. If I recall the episode correctly, the woman in Duvall's building suggests that he was misbehaving with the girl, but it seems to me that she only says that because she was spurned by Duvall, and don't the police ultimately decide that she was lying? Granted, it does seem strange that a guy Duvall's age is friends with this girl, but to assume he is mistreating her, I think, is a mistake and not what the makers of the program intended.
     
  5. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,823
    Likes Received:
    443
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    That was my first take, but it's very clear they are taking him away for the crime at the end of the episode (and they weren't going to back out of it or give the audience an 'out'), and it's also very clear that the son's (Duvall's) confession to the father was real in the sense that he is basically telling his coward father, "You see what you're abandoning me did to me; it made me a monster."I think the intention of the writer is extremely clear, but they obviously couldn't play up any scenes with Duvall and the girl that were untoward. The fact that the jilted woman outed him doesn't mean it wasn't true, even if she didn't really know. She just knew it was an entirely wrong relationship to begin with. The writer was also careful to show the type of parenting that could lead to a girl being vulnerable to the inappropriate attentions of an older man when you see her father and mother completely ignoring her at home in their own vain pursuits. These were all signposts of what drama at the time could get away with in depicting a touchy story. The fact they made the character somewhat sympathetic is why I said the Duvall casting was perfect. I can see why you'd root for him to be innocent - he's Boo Radley for goshsakes, but that's not what the elements of the story were hinting at. One of the great assets of this show was that it didn't need to hit viewers over the head like so many shows do and continue to do to get their point across.

    As a side note, my father was a county attorney in Maryland who often dealt with these crimes and I remember asking him long after he retired and before he died if child molesting was more prevalent today because it always seemed to be in the news (before mass shootings, of course), and he told me no, it was just reported more.
     
  6. Will Green

    Will Green Extra

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2012
    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    1
    Wayne, you have perfectly captured Abram Ginnes' (and Howard Rodman's) thrust. What a great episode from a series chock full of them. The delicacy of treatment (typical for this brilliant show) of this subject may be lost on some. It's a FAR more adult treatment of the subject matter than could be achieved today, given our current cultural hysteria about the issue.
     
  7. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,823
    Likes Received:
    443
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    So I'm watching the next episode in the 10-disc set called "Hold for Gloria Christmas" and I just have to point out that in the first five minutes there's a scene that takes place at a curbside newsstand, and hanging directly in camera frame so close you can reach out and grab it... is a copy of Amazing Fantasy #15. For you comic aficionados, that is the first appearance of Spiderman in Marvel Comics.

    And I really DID want to reach out and grab it, because that issue, in mint condition has sold for as much as $1.1 million.And here it is just staring you in the face. If Burgess Meredith bought that issue for 10 cents instead of worrying about his poems, it would have been worth a lot more than the $500 he sold them for.

    The other notable moment in this episode is what can only be described as a "Poetry Off" between Burgess Meredith and Alan Alda in a beat club. Historical for preceding the "Rap Off" battles of Eminem in "8 Mile" by about 50 years. If you look closely in that scene, you'll also see a young and luscious Jessica Walter of Play Misty For Me, Arrested Development and lately, Archer fame.
     
  8. Guy Foulard

    Guy Foulard Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Messages:
    395
    Likes Received:
    106
    Real Name:
    Jason
    You're not the first one to notice this crazy detail! http://www.dialbforblog.com/archives/531/ (and other places online)

    So crazy! And not just for the amazing amount of money it's worth now--but just imagining a world where you can walk down the street and plunk down your 12 cents to casually read the first appearance of Ol' Webhead (probably a few blocks from where Stan and Steve are concocting Spider-Man #1 at that very minute...).
     
    Mike*HTF likes this.
  9. Wvtvguy

    Wvtvguy Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2010
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    74
    Real Name:
    Marc
    If I remember correctly, you can also see the Journey in Mystery issue that introduced Thor. What a newsstand !!
     
  10. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,823
    Likes Received:
    443
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    I had all those sixties Marvel comics, including Spiderman 1-50, Fantastic Four 1-50, X-Men 1-50, Iron Man, Thor, Astonishing Tales, etc. I sold them all right before I went to college to buy a pair of 80-lb speakers. But now that my son's close to going to college, I realize that if I still had that collection in near mint condition it would pay for his entire college (and graduate school) many times over. X-Men #1 alone is worth more than $30,000.Sigh. Oh Well. At least I'm still listening to those speakers on my home theater system.
     
  11. Wvtvguy

    Wvtvguy Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2010
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    74
    Real Name:
    Marc
    I miss the days of buying comics off a rack at a drugstore or bookstore. Plus, even when I started buying in the 70's, I could get 3 books for a $1. It's all way too "niche" & too serious today. I'd be afraid to know what a comic costs now.
     
  12. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,823
    Likes Received:
    443
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    About $3.99
     
  13. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2006
    Messages:
    3,860
    Likes Received:
    1,099
    I went through the Duvall episode too the other day, and I have to admit if it weren't for the comments here that helped me clarify things better, I may have come away thinking they were trying to obscure the matter of Duvall's guilt (which perhaps they were). But here's one other clue that cinches his guilt, and that's at the beginning when he breaks into the orphanage and he tells the kid who sees him stealing the money that he wouldn't want to come with him even if he could, or words to that effect. That's Duvall basically telling him he's capable of doing horrible things to him.
     
  14. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,823
    Likes Received:
    443
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    Right. The beauty of writing in that era was that scriptwriters had to get potentially controversial intentions across in subtler ways. Which, of course, is the whole reason for the existence of Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone.
     
  15. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,823
    Likes Received:
    443
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    Where were the acting police when William Shatner played a psychopathic artist in "Portrait of a Painter"?Theodore Bikel cleaned the floorboards up with him. The only impressive thing about Shatner's really misconceived performance in this episode... awesome toupee (except when he's laying in bed at one point and it moves a bit up and down on his forehead).
     
  16. DeWilson

    DeWilson Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2006
    Messages:
    2,220
    Likes Received:
    145
    Real Name:
    Denny
    Shatner had a toupee? Was it eligible for an Emmy?
     

Share This Page