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Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Frank Soyke, Mar 7, 2011.
There might still be a few Alaskans posted on YouTube.
Alas, I just checked and they are no longer there in toto. I have around 6/7 full episodes. I can put them on a zip, send to someone and they can share..
Return to San Dede, Part I
"The Desert Story" (S2E24)
The studio approaches Montgomery Pittman with an offer: "Monty, we've got a ton of leftover desert backdrops from Virginia City, a ratty old train, and a set full of paper mache rocks. If you can write up something that will help us amortize these assets, we'll let you do a two-part episode. Whaddaya say?" Good ol' Monty was never one to turn down a challenge.
Stu Bailey is hired to escort Roxanne Ferrales (Andra Martin)--the daughter of a prominent San Dede family--from her American college back to the mother country. San Dede is a vaguely located South American country rife with political and social strife, ready for a change in leadership. Roxanne, who looks like she just stepped out of Sophia Loren's closet, immediately develops a snooty attitude towards Stu who she considers to be a "mercenary". Stu and Roxanne exchange fairly humorous barbed observations about one another, which foretells of a rocky relationship for the trip to San Dede.
The next scene finds the pair in the Aeropuerto (so says the overhead gate sign) in order to buy...train tickets? This is to be the final leg of their journey to the Capital City. The rickety train proves to be about as luxurious as an Econolodge, with as many amenities. No diner or club car. No shower shampoo. No padded seats. No visible electric lighting. It does, however, contain a number of boisterous fellows pretending to be bullfighters and one sneering Latino, Pablo Pineda (Rudolpho Hoyos). More about him later.
Stu is singularly focused on a buxom senorita traveling with her sourpuss mother. She offers him a cold chicken leg--obviously a traditional Latin American invitation of romantic intention. However, Stu gets into an altercation will the bullfighters and never gets the chance to consummate a tryst with the pretty girl.
Andra Martin; Rudolpho Hoyos; some studio rockage
Stu wakes up from the previous evening's fight to find his and Roxy's car has been separated from the rest of the train and left alone in the studio...er...desert. Roxy blames Stu for the loss of the train. Stu blames Roxy for blaming him. Their bickering continues--it's the start of a warm relationship.
Meantime, a ferocious dust storm is brewing which causes Stu and Roxanne to astutely leave the shelter of the train car and head into the desert for what promises to be a Disney-like adventure. Fortunately, Stu has brought along his mail-order Wild Kingdom safari outfit, stocked with binoculars, hiking boots and backpack. Roxanne contributes a boatload of canned sardines in garlic oil, probably smuggled from her college dorm cafeteria. At least they won't starve, but some Clorets are going to be sorely needed.
They begin to tirelessly follow the train tracks all the way to the desert landscape backdrop about ten yards away. This, in turn, leads them to the land of paper mache rocks. Interestingly enough, with the wind howling, none of the plant life moves. They find refuge in a replica of the Alamo, where Roxanne admits her nickname is "Rocky". Stu reveals his as "Mr. Bailey". Romantic music is wafting in the background as they settle in for the night.
Morning arrives accompanied by a yummy garlic sardine breakfast. Roxanne has woken up on the wrong side of the floor, yells at Stu and bitch slaps him until his eyes cross. She immediately apologizes and admits to being a spoiled brat and not worthy of assuming a leadership position in her country. Stu, however, likes abuse from forceful bitch-slapping spoiled women, and they begin to fall in love. Their sardine-scented kissy-facing is suddenly interrupted by the arrival of sneering Senor Pineda and his thugs. They've located the pair by following a trail of empty sardine cans. Pineda tries to negotiate with Stu to turn over Roxanne. Stu's idea of negotiation is to slug the guy and steal his jeep. The chase is on! Will Rocky and Stu's love bloom? Will they make it to Capital City? Will Roxanne assume control of the country?
Will Stu find a suitable change of clothes? Will either ever eat sardines again?
Part II tomorrow.
The Philadelphia Inquirer used "Rotogravure" for their Sunday comic section and although we were a Bulletin family ( the other major Philly daily) my mom bought the Sunday Inquirer for me just for that Sunday comic section. Have not heard or seen that word since.
There are grey market full runs of BSB out there that are almost perfect. They are not authorized sets.
Was at the Tropics a few times while in Hawaii on business. I understand that the gentleman who played Moke has the Shell Bar complete in his home on Oahu. SS6 and HE were great shows, Have all of them and watch then in rotation with the other 2 shows.
Return to San Dede, Part II
"Capital City" (S2E25)
In Part I, we left Stu and Roxanne in a stolen jeep heading for the Capital after professing love for one another. Ahhhh, love in a dusty jeep and the aphrodisiac effects of anchovies in garlic oil. A killer combo.
They make it to the city safely and spend time shopping for new clothes at what appears to be San Dede's Rodeo Drive. Stu buys a cream-colored suit from the Sidney Greenstreet Cairo Collection. Roxanne finds a decorative Dale Evans outfit. Now, with both suitably attired, it's time to storm the castle. But wait! There appears to be a Roxanne imposter holding fort! Distressed, Stu and Roxy repair to the nearest bar to drink heavily and plan their next move. Stu cozies up to a reporter name 'Crease' Edwards (James Chandler)--we know he's a real reporter due to the press card comically stuck in his hatband. Stu reveals he has the actual Roxanne and promises Crease the scoop if he helps get him into the castle. Crease is dubious, but has a cheat sheet on Roxanne that he uses to identify her:
Born: Oct. 17, 1938
Major: Peruvian Political Science
Minor: History of Eutruscan Pottery
Birthmarks: Small mole over left knee in the shape of a Toro lawn mower
Yep, it's her all right. He and Stu head for the castle, stupidly leaving Roxanne alone at the bar, where she is kidnapped by evil Senor Pineda who just happens to be in the same place.
Once inside the castle, Stu and Crease find a rousing press party thrown by the corrupt politicians. Nothing attracts reporters quicker than corrupt politicians, an open bar and bowls of cheese puffs. Stu wanders past the rope line and is immediately shot by a Jackie Gleason look-alike general. There will be no getting that stain out of the new suit, dammit. He's taken to meet Mr. Salazar (Luis Van Rooten), who we originally thought was a bad guy, but turns out to be on the good side. Salazar surpisingly reveals Jeff Spencer, who's been spending time in San Dede messing around with Roxanne's imposter--an actress named...wait for it...Taffy.
Princess Roxanne enjoys a day on the San Dede beach; Luis Van Rooten; Sidney displays a suit from his faaabulus fashion collection
Stu is whisked off to the hospital, leaving Jeff to take over the task of finding Roxanne and helping overthrow San Dede's rotten government. Just another day at the office for the young man. In no time, Jeff finds Roxanne in, of all places, a junkyard run by Senor Pineda. The bad guys are revealed and Roxanne assumes the control of the country via a low cut dress and pushup bra. Crowds cheer, bells ring and the San Dede National Anthem is played off key but avidly by the local Elks Club band. Stu regrets having to leave Roxanne to her official duties. Unrequited love. So sad.
Stu and Jeff return home only to find that in their absence, Roscoe has married Suzanne and assumed control of the business.*
Luis Van Rooten was known mostly for his many villainous roles on TV and in films, but was also a renown author of sophisticated books of humor.
Roxanne Ferrales, now approaching 81 years old, is retired from San Dede politics and lives on an artichoke farm in Milbury, Iowa with her pet goats.*
*Nah. Just made that stuff up.
It's forever immortalized in the lyrics to the Irving Berlin song "Easter Parade." That's in fact how I learned what a rotogravure section was. I heard that odd word and asked my parents. They told me, "That's what they used to call the color section of the Sunday paper."
Russ, I enjoyed your romp through the "Return to San Dede" two-parter. As much as I love Pittman, I think this effort of his misfires a bit, although Jeff makes the second half fun. Andra Martin's character is just too intolerably nasty in the first half, and her sudden thaw towards Stu seems implausible.
And I don't understand what Luis Van Rooten's character's motivation might have been for representing himself to Stu as a villain early in Part 1, when he had a vested interest in doing the opposite.
Reading your review of the two episodes was more fun than actually watching them!
If you can receive the Decades channel they are having a “77 Sunset Strip” marathon starting Saturday the 17th at 1 pm until Monday morning the 19th at 7 am.
During the marathon they will be running the one episode that has never been shown on sister digital channel MeTV and that’s “Bullets for Santa.” It will air late Saturday night at 2 am. I’ve already set my dvr.
Gary, thanks for the heads-up! I've a mind to record the entire Binge, because Decades runs the episodes uncropped. Or at least, they have in the past.
I was thinking the same thing!
Glad you enjoyed the commentaries, Rob. I had fun writing them.
I realized halfway through that I had actually written a commentary on these episodes many pages ago. I never go back to read my past stuff for fear of wishing I could re-edit the whole kaboodle.
I rethought the matter once I remembered that Decades only comes in at 480 here in LA.
Rob, because Decades is only available over the air in L.A. on occasion I've tried to find the channel. I know that it is KAZA Ch. 54 (54.1 is Me-TV and 54.2 is Decades) and that the frequency it's broadcast on is ch. 47. Do you know where their signal is broadcast from? I gave up trying to find it soon after CBS2 changed their 2.2 channel to something I haven't watched even once. I thought if I knew the direction the signal comes from I might try it again and have a better chance of finding it.
Try this: disconnect your aerial and rescan, reconnect the aerial and scan again.
My reception has been wacky the last month or so. After rescanning, my CBS group is 30 channels away from where it is supposed to be. Some channels show up in duplicate, one showing "no signal" and the duplicate being tuned in.
Maybe it's the weather.
Martin, it broadcasts from Mount Harvard, which is right in front of Mount Wilson (to the south). If you do a fresh auto-scan on your TV it should pick it up.
Bob, it's more likely sunspots this time of year, although I have no specific knowledge of any such problems right now. I do have weather-related problems when it's rainy.
Also, the problem could be in how the channels are encoding their signal. KAZA does some wacky things along this line from time to time.
"Fraternity of Fear" (S2E31)
It's another slow afternoon in the WB writers' bullpen. Ideas for the next episode are slow in coming. After a long silence punctuated by several cups of bad coffee, Dick Stenger suggests "Let's send Spencer back to college to solve a murder."
"Didn't we already do that in season one's "Conspiracy of Silence?" questions someone.
"Yeah, but it worked then--let's try it again. Besides, it gives us a good excuse to cast some hot young co-eds."
"Okay. Write up a scenario and bring it to us--we'll be at Frank & Musso's the rest of the afternoon..."
The Connor family is pissed. Their son Jimmy's death at college is ruled "accidental" by the Coroner. That verdict just won't do as far as the Connors are concerned. They hire Jeff Spencer to infiltrate the college ranks and get to the bottom of what really happened to Jimmy.
Jeff immediately goes on a shopping spree to buy a pair of chinos, v-neck cardigans and penny loafers. He'll fit right in, you betcha.
High on the list of suspects are Jimmy's fraternity mates, a football jock and even the board of trustees. Oh, it's gonna be a tangled web for sure. Jeff, being a cool dude, has no trouble fitting into the frat house--populated by a bunch of dweebies. He makes friends with Jimmy's roommate Milton (Jerry Brent) and the school paper's editor Mary Ellen Taylor (a very young Shirley Knight). To add a touch of comedy, Roscoe is hired as a soda jerk at the campus hangout to hopefully overhear any stuff about Jimmy.
Jeff studies some cleavage; he shares soggy fries with Mary Ellen; Brad tries out his game day face
Jeff himself gets hired by Mary Ellen as a reporter for the paper. He wastes no time hitting on her and gets invited to a party that night.
His next move is to get close to football star Brad Curtis (Gary Vinson) who, despite his jock image, is actually quite a scholar. Brad also dates the homecoming queen Doris Skinner (Diane McBain), so he and Jeff exchange some winks and nods about loose college co-eds.
At the party, Jeff miraculously finds a guitar and warbles a cloyingly syrupy "Where Did the Summer Go". The kids just love it. Doris wonders where she can drag Jeff and practice some unbecoming homecoming queen moves on him. Her intentions are interrupted by the arrival of the football coach (Kenneth Tobey without his whirlybird). Only punch is being served at the party, so it ends quickly.
Next, Jeff interviews the Dean, an old coot around 102 who understands college kids about as much as diaper rashes. No help there.
Was Jimmy's death by murder? By suicide? By accident? Is loutish Brad a good or bad guy? Can Jeff fool everyone as a college student? Did Jimmy Connors fake his death and go on to become a famous tennis player? I ain't tellin'. You'll have to watch the episode yourself.
Okay, so this is another Jeff-goes-to-college episode. It's still fun, and a blast to see how college kids were portrayed in the early 1960's. I got to college only 7 years later, and it was no way, no how anything like this.
Shirley Knight was no slouch in the acting department, having been nominated twice for an Academy Award, winning a Tony, 3 Emmys and a Golden Globe. She was also pretty darn good looking in her youth:
Here she is cozying up to just another unknown actor...