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Route 66 (1 Viewer)

The Obsolete Man

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For me, Route 66 is my second favorite series of the 60s only behind the Fugitive.

Yknow, that's something missing today. A road trip Anthology series with one or two main characters traveling the country for whatever reason and getting into situations.

Fugitive, Route 66, hell, The Incredible Hulk... all successful, and TV needs some dramas that aren't serialized.
 

Hollywoodaholic

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Yknow, that's something missing today. A road trip Anthology series with one or two main characters traveling the country for whatever reason and getting into situations.

Fugitive, Route 66, hell, The Incredible Hulk... all successful, and TV needs some dramas that aren't serialized.

And only one of those series actually did any traveling and shooting outside of Southern California... Route 66, which went all over the U.S., and not just along Route 66.
 

Flashgear

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Apparently, had Route 66 been renewed for a fifth year, the plan of Herbert B. Leonard, Stirling Silliphant and Sam Manners was to perhaps take the boys to Europe...that would have been interesting, but also a very different show...I don't think it would have worked for the long run...

I Love Route 66 so much...definitely in the top 5 of my favorite '60s shows...what does it have? Great Writing by Silliphant and Ernest Kinoy, among others...Truly Great Nelson Riddle Music...probably the first ever positive depiction of Vietnam Veterans on American TV, ("Fifty Miles From Home", "What a Shining Young Man Was Our Gallant Lieutenant")...Great Directors like Sheldon, Altman, Hiller, Senensky, many others...Unparalleled location shooting across the USA (and parts of Canada too, Toronto and Niagara Falls, Ontario)...Poland Springs Maine to New Orleans Louisiana...Boston to Santa Catalina California...Butte Montana to Santa Fe New Mexico...Astoria Oregon to Philadelphia Pennsylvania...and many points in between...You can't underestimate the unique charm of a network show that filmed fearlessly on busy freeways, packed sidewalks, speedways, airports, stadiums and racetracks...utilizing the locals in background and crowd scenes, often with some of the amateurs showing their self conscious nerves, and trying not to look directly into the camera...in all manner of workplace from farm fields, underground and strip Mines, Steel Foundries, manufacturing plants, lumber mills...everything from the huge Anaconda open pit mine at Butte Montana ("A Month of Sundays") to the Convair Atlas Missile Assembly Plant in San Diego ("Don't Count Stars")...every Great Guest Star you would want, too many to list, but unusual and rare Guest Stars like Boris Karloff, Lon Chaney Jr. and Peter Lorre ("Lizard's Leg and Owlet's Wing")...Joe E. Brown and Buster Keaton ("Journey to Nineveh")...Rin-Tin-Tin ("An Absence of Tears")...Joan Crawford ("Same Picture, Different Frame")...truly Delectable Beauties like Susan Oliver, Julie Newmar, Janice Rule, Suzanne Pleshette, Vera Miles, Laura Devon, Tuesday Weld, Joey Heatherton, Diane Baker, Lois Nettleton, Madlyn Rhue, Anne Francis, Susan Koehner, Whitney Blake, Barbara Eden, Zohra Lampert (I do go on)...my God, I've actually had a dream about Anne Helm, "Sweet Thing" of "The Clover Throne", ha, ha...eye popping, I must say...

Here's another interesting panorama shot of a Route 66 set from behind the scenes...Glenn Canyon?
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And this is Route 66's very first TV Guide cover...July 22, 1961...TV Guide loved these guys...
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It Kills me a little bit that the first 13 episodes were never remastered for any of the DVD sets, and with the brutal edit on "A Fury Slinging Flame"...everything up to "Play it Glissando" are older, inferior transfers with replaced modern Columbia closing logo...I bought all the Roxbury / Infinity sets as they came out...including the remastered but formatted to widescreen botch job volume 2 of season 1...corrected later with the Shout sets, I have the Shout Complete series just to get the beautifully done 4th season......BUT HERE'S THE BAD NEWS...if you have both the Roxbury / Infinity sets and the Shout Factory sets...I hope you haven't given away or sold off the older Roxbury / Infinity season 1 to 3 sets...not all the sources and transfers are the same between the two sets...in real and significant ways, the Roxbury / Infinity season 2 and season 3 sets are GREATLY SUPERIOR...Shout did a pretty good job on their sets, but why, oh why did they choose to load 6 episodes on Disc 1 and Disc 6 of season 2...and also load 6 episodes on Disc 1 of season 3????...in comparing the PQ of the affected episodes, the Roxbury / Infinity sets have Greatly Superior picture...not suffering from the compression degradation of the Shout DVD's...this affects some of my favorite episodes...season three's first 6 episodes...including one of the series best episodes, "Ever Ride the Waves in Oklahoma?", a brilliant Maharis performance, beautifully shot at Huntington Beach..."One Tiger to a Hill" (David Janssen), "Journey to Nineveh" and "Lizard's Leg and Owlet's Wing"...and the two Wonderful Chicago shot episodes, "Man Out of Time" and "Voice at the End of the Line"...in the case of this episode, in addition to suffering from compression, it also is from a different source element, having the modern Columbia Television logo...the great looking source used on the older Roxbury set has the correct period Screen Gems closing logo...and runs longer by 4 seconds...

Anyway, for those fans who Love Route 66 as much as I do, I hope you still have ALL of the Roxbury / Infinity sets...otherwise, about 18 episodes of season 2 and 3 will be only seen in their compressed and inferior PQ of the Shout sets...
 
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Jeff Flugel

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Thanks for posting all those great behind-the-scenes photos, Randall!

Per your last post, I happen to have all of the Roxbury/Infinity sets for the first 3 seasons. Glad to hear that they are worth hanging onto. I agree wholeheartedly that it's a crying shame about those episodes in the first half of season one that have inferior transfers, and especially the one cut episode, "A Fury Slinging Flame." I've yet to buy the individual 4th season set Shout was kind enough to release separately. It's been on my wishlist for a while and I'll be pulling the trigger on it very soon. Put me down as one of those fans who has a hard time enjoying the show without Maharis. No offense to Glenn Corbett, who I like just fine; he's just too much like Martin Milner. The shows with Linc Case riding along in the 'Vette are still good, the writing and guest stars still top-notch, but the delicate balance of yin-yang personalities is no longer the same once Maharis leaves the show, IMO.

Needless to say, I love this series, too...enough to do a blog post about it a few years back:

http://thestalkingmoon.weebly.com/the-small-screen/me-tv-summer-of-classic-tv-blogathon-route-66
 
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Flashgear

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Great blog article, Jeff!... I very much enjoyed reading it...you reminded me, I should have mentioned Howard Rodman among the writing talents...Sam Peckinpah also among the directors for the Lee Marvin, Pittsburgh shot episode, "Mon Petit Chou"...this was Silliphant's show, but I really like the Ernest Kinoy written scripts too...season Four's "I Wouldn't Start From Here" , shot at Poland Springs, Maine with a Garrison Keilor "Lake Woebegone" feel to it...very charming, and one of my favorites from the final season...Kinoy wrote two of my absolute favorite episodes from Shout's season 1 of The Defenders..."The Best Defense" and "Man With the Concrete Thumb"...Brilliant writer...
 

jperez

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From what I've read, not knowing if it has based in fact -as is the intent to move the series to Europe, mentioned in later interviews-, they also had plans to go down into Latin America. Mexico would have been a certainty, and I've even heard about doing a few episodes in Puerto Rico (where I live).
 

Jeff Flugel

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Thank you, Randall, for the kind comments. I'm not surprised there is some writerly crossover between ROUTE 66 and THE DEFENDERS (another DVD set that's high on my "to buy" list, along with THE WESTERNER and the upcoming CORONET BLUE), given the proximity in time period and the quality of the talent involved with both shows.

Jorge, I hadn't heard about the producers wanting to shoot some of season 5 in Latin America, including Puerto Rico, but it makes sense. I would have liked to have seen a fifth season, with the boys traveling south of the border, and elsewhere - hopefully, with George Maharis' Buz back in the passenger seat, along with a recently-divorced Tod (though it be hard to buy him leaving a honey like Barbara Eden!). Or, perhaps, Tod could have given (loaned?) his 'vette to Linc, and Corbett and Maharis could have taken off for adventures new.
 
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Flashgear

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Here's something I noticed also from season 3...even with their minimum wage jobs, Buzz and Tod got a new model year Corvette every season, but with the radical body style changes to the 'Vette for 1963, we don't see the boys drive the new model until 11 episodes into season 3..."Hey Moth, Come Eat the Flame"...up until that episode, they're still in the '62...I'm sure they also upgraded to a big block V8 at the same time...see America from coast to coast at 8 - 12 miles per gallon...of course, gasoline being about 29 cents...and their wages maybe $1 to $1.25 per hour...
 

Nelson Au

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I have not seen the entire series yet, but I know Tod gets married at the end. Sorry I saw that it was Barbara Eden. Sorry that I saw who it was, not that it was Miss Eden. :). Not that big a deal, it will be interesting to see it.

I still haven't had a chance to pull the trigger. I see Amazon has the series set from Shout for $98. I thought I saw it for $77, but perhaps that was from another seller.
 

Jeff Flugel

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Oops, sorry for the spoiler in the above post, Nelson. My bad. I saw that final episode discussed in another ROUTE 66 thread, so didn't consider it a major spoiler. My apologies nonetheless.

Hope you can find a good deal on the complete series set.
 

Flashgear

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Another interesting behind the scenes shot from Route 66...from the early first season episode "Layout at Glen Canyon" (Dec. 2, 1960)...a truly fascinating show filmed while the Glen Canyon Dam Mega Project was under construction...the DC-3 has just arrived and the Lovely Ladies are disembarking...Bethel Leslie, Elizabeth MacRae (Lou Anne Poovie of Gomer Pyle USMC), Donna Douglas (Ellie Mae of Berverly Hillbillies) and the exquisite Zohra Lampert...
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Another color shot from the Carlisle, PA set of season two's "Some of the People, Some of the Time" (Dec. 11, 1961) Directed by Robert Altman...
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Boris Karloff being made up in his Frankenstein Monster make up for season three's "Lizard's Leg and Owlet's Wing" (Oct. 26, 1962)...
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Another of the Show's Tractor Trailer units for the coast to coast production caravan...
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Publicity photo for season three's "Ever Ride the Waves in Oklahoma?" (Oct. 12, 1962) at Huntington Beach...I believe the girl seen here with Martin Milner is actress Romney Tree...truly a great episode with a memorable Maharis performance...
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Writer Stirling Silliphant, who wrote so many of the show's Greatest teleplays...
silliphant-stirling.jpg


Snap shot of Joan Crawford on the Poland Springs, Maine set of season four's "Same Picture, Different Frame" (Oct 4, 1963)...
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Publicity photo for the same episode...anyone here watching the current mini series Feud on Fx?

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Julie Newmar as the enigmatic and alluring Vicki in season two's "How Much a Pound is Albatross?" (Feb. 9, 1962)...filmed on location at Tucson, Az...
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Flashgear

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I've found more info about this behind the scenes panorama of a Route 66 set...this is Lake Havasu, AZ, Feb. 1962...from the second season episode "Go Read the River" (Mar. 16, 1962) Directed by Arthur Hiller...
img_0015.jpg


Tv Guide of July 6, 1963 with Martin Milner's new co-star Glenn Corbett...
63route66cast.jpg


Season four cast party in LA...the crew had just returned from shooting elsewhere in the lower 48...
Stephanie Powers third from the left...she guest starred in the fourth season episode "A Cage in Search of a Bird"...Ruth Roman in between Milner and Corbett...
actors-martin-milner-and-glenn-corbett-attend-the-route-66-cast-party-picture-id522135249

Another photo from the 1963 cast party...Gorgeous Stephanie Powers on the left, equally Gorgeous Laura Devon is just out of the frame behind her...Elizabeth MacRae or Brooke Bundy next to Stephanie Powers?...Carolyn Kearney behind them?...Ruth Roman seated to the left of Corbett...and the Great Series Writer Stirling Silliphant seated between Milner and Corbett...

actors-martin-milner-and-glenn-corbett-attend-the-route-66-cast-party-picture-id522135397


In the following photo, Jazz and Blues Singer (and Actress) Ethel Waters is seen on the far right, front row...she guest starred in the memorable and important season two episode, "Good Night Sweet Blues" (Oct 6, 1961)...with the legendary Memphis Blues and Jazz band the "Memphis Naturals", including the great Sax player Coleman Hawkins...a Television Milestone for African American Performers and the Civil Rights Movement of the early '60s...

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More of the Route 66 coast to coast caravan...from the final season...
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A selection of Anne Helm's appearances on Route 66...the Gorgeous Anne Helm was a Canadian girl from Toronto, Ontario...She did 3 episodes..."Narcissus on an Old Red Fire Engine", "From an Enchantress, Fleeing" and as Sweet Thing in "The Clover Throne"...Wow...
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Gary16

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Definitely not Brooke Bundy. It's Diana Millay. Not positive that's Stefanie Powers on the left either but could be.
 

Nelson Au

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My set arrived yesterday. I was surprised it felt really heavy! I compared to the Bob Newhart set from Shout as well as the WKRP set. Both those are lighter. Must be more discs in Route 66. :)

Wouldn't mind having that 63 Corvette.
 

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