What did you watch this week in classic TV on DVD(or Blu)?

Rustifer

Screenwriter
Premium
Joined
Oct 20, 2017
Messages
1,842
Reaction score
5,784
Points
1,610
Location
Carmel, Indiana
Real Name
Russ J.
The Sweeney - 1.8 "The Cover Story"
Somewhat atypical for this gritty, groundbreaking police drama, the crime story takes a back set to romance here. Hard-as-nails copper Jack Regan (John Thaw) falls for a gorgeous reporter (Prunella Gee) who may or may not be involved with a gang of criminals and their nefarious doings. Not a lot of action, but the acting, script and seedy decor are up to par, and Ms. Gee makes for a very attractive suspect.
I need to catch up on this series, especially since I've enjoyed John Thaw so much in his Inspector Morse show. You gotta like a character who drinks too much, never smiles, and considers everyone but himself an idiot.

I finished up my re-visitation with The Dakotas, A Nice Girl from Goliath (May 13, 1963) W: E.M. Parsons. D: Charles R. Rondeau. Guest cast: Audrey Dalton, Frank DeKova, Elisha Cook Jr.
So Chad Everett, Peter Brown and Edd Byrnes walk into a singles bar in 1961.
"What'll you have?" asks the bartender.
"Anyone in here we want", they all reply.

Okay, maybe not so funny--but probably true.
 

bmasters9

Producer
Joined
Jan 8, 2008
Messages
4,229
Reaction score
3,999
Points
4,110
Real Name
Ben Masters
The Streets of San Francisco, first-season episode "45 Minutes From Home," OAD Saturday, October 7, 1972 on ABC (one I hadn't seen in quite a while [I saw it for the first time when I had the individual first-season, first-volume release])
 
Last edited:

bmasters9

Producer
Joined
Jan 8, 2008
Messages
4,229
Reaction score
3,999
Points
4,110
Real Name
Ben Masters
Mom says I'd get on my rocking horse to watch either and the faster they rode the faster I rode.
That had to be pretty fun, riding your rocking horse in time to how fast the horse on the show ran!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

mark-edk

Second Unit
Joined
Jun 28, 2002
Messages
352
Reaction score
457
Points
110
Been spending several weeks upgrading my mp4 Ozzie & Harriet collection. As a results I've watched a ton of episodes. This is long so scroll away if you're not into O&H.

In the first season they used footage of Ozzie and the kids playing baseball in what appears to have been the real O&H backyard. The next time they went outdoors the backyard was back to its tiny sound-stage size. Another episode seemed to show their real-life home swimming pool during the closing credits. One episode actually included a shot of the nonexistent studio audience (it looked a lot like the shots in You Bet Your Life). The laugh track wasn't bad at first but eventually became one of the worst on any sitcom. That and Ricky's rather sullen delivery once he became a teen were the show's main flaws for me. (Ozzie recognized that about Rick. During one of his songs, Ozzie turned to Harriet and said 'I think he's smiling more.')

Even though so many outdoor scenes were shot on the soundstage, they went out of their way to convince viewers otherwise. Somehow they managed to make leaves in the trees flutter as if in the wind. They'd occasionally add the sound of a plane flying overhead too.

Originally Ricky was in the right-hand bed; later episodes they switched for whatever reason. OTOH Ozzie and Harriet finally got rid of their double beds in Season 4. That was 1955 and likely the first time tv viewers saw such a thing on the tube.

Thorny disappeared in season five, though he still showed up in several episodes. These were not shows delayed from the previous season because the redesigned living room (with the eagle over the fireplace) was visible. That means he did a handful of episodes and THEN left the show.

Wally was brought in (first named 'Chubby') to help make up for the loss of Thorny in season five. As the show progressed they gave him a love interest: Ginger Phillips, blonde daughter of the local florist, played by Joyce Taylor. Later Ginger (Elaine Dupont) tarted getting feisty with her boy friend. But the real and true Ginger was Charlene Salerno, who had appeared as 'Gladys' in season eight but quickly took over the role of Ginger for good.

Real Life: So many things were named for, or inspired by, real life incidents, including the neighbor named Thornbury and his son Will, Dave's boss attorney Kelley (the name of the family's real life lawyer), Dave's interest in motorcycles, Rick filling in for a drummer, the boys' interest in martial artists and self-defense etc. The boys never used stunt doubles; Dave suffered a minor injury in the motorcycle episode. Connie Harper, secretary for Rick and coordinator of the fan clubs, became Mr Kelley's secretary on the show (where her constant typing got a lot of her off-screen work done during the filmings). She was probably the best sitcom secretary since Susie McNamara.

Repertory Troupe: Before that, and even while playing that role, Harper was one of the Nelson repertory players who played dozens of different parts from one show to another. In just one season, while playing the secretary, she also portrayed a member of Ginger's sorority, a movie usher, a friend of Clara, and a member of the Women's Club. Others in the company were Joe Wagner (eventually settling in as the malt shop guy), Ben Bennett, and Joseph Kearns (before he moved in next to Dennis).

Ozztrodamus: Ozzie had an amazing ability to see the future. In season seven ('Always a Bridgegroom') he daydreamed about visiting Dave's family after a few years of married life. He and Harriet showed up at their lovely apartment. Four seasons later, when Dave finally did get married on the show, the apartment they moved into was the same set.

World's Deepest Callbacks: In one episode the police are called to Ozzie's house and they're told to respond to 1847 Rogers Road. That was the addresse used when the show began on radio. The sponsor was 1847 Rogers Silver Plate so the street name was a plug. An even greater stretch went back to the tv show's first season and an episode called 'The Speech' where Ozzie uses a special formula to make writing a speech simple. The opening gambit is a quote from Teddy Roosevelt that can easily be used to transition to any subject the speaker wants. Fast forward to 21 years later: in the last episode of the short-lived spin-off Ozzie's Girls Susie is running for a school office and Ozzie helps her write the speech. Sure enough, it starts with that same Teddy Roosevelt quote.

Alternate Timelines: Doc Williams, new in town, moves into the house right across from Ozzie's. But wait, that's where Joe Randolph lived. On the other hand, how could Ozzie just meet Doc Williams when later Doc talked about bringing both Dave and Rick into the world? Darby lives next door to Ozzie, except when Ozzie is out walking with a pony he clearly lives way down the street. Ozzie's house has a basement in one episode, a crawlspace in another, and the chimney doesn't stay put from season to season. Ozzie did some of this on purpose: June Blair's early appearances in the show as other characters were re-edited in later episodes that claimed to show June trying out for a secretary's job, and being proposed to by Dave.

A Word from Our Sponsor: Early episodes were sponsored by Listerine and Hotpoint. Listerine was hawking toothpaste will 'all-day anti-Enzyme' protection that would eventually get a thumbs down from the American Dental Association. Hotpoint ads featured a bouncy little elf who in close-up revealed herself to be Mary Tyler Moore. Lots of product placement for Kodak, Coke, and the American Dairy Association (one episode focused on Rick's job as a substitute milkman).

Destined for Big Things: Joe Flynn played Mr Kelley until he moved to great success in McHale's Navy. Don DeFore co-starred with Shirley Booth on Hazel. Darryl Hickmen became Dobie Gillis. Jerry Mathers (a trick or treater) became The Beav. Joseph Kearns went on to Dennis the Menace. Young ladies included Susan Oliver, Tuesday Weld, Linda Evans, Joi Lansing, Joan Staley, rockabilly singer Lorrie Collins, and Cheryl Holdridge. The Four Preps were a fixture at the frat house; one of them was Glen A Larson, who went on to became a major producer of tv shows, and a composer of tv themes.

Here Come the Brides: When Ozzie & Harriet aired originally I liked June better, but now I think Kris was the more natural performer. Some shows fizzle out by the 4th or 5th seasons. The brides helped to keep it fresh through at least 13 seasons, with only the final season a bit of a let down at times. Despite joining the show a year after June, Kris appeared in more episodes. And she may have been the key to another, utterly different tv show that ran even longer than O&H. Ozzie struck up a friendship with Kris's brother talking about big band music etc. Eventually Ozzie decided to do his spinoff show Ozzie's Girls, and the last episode ran into a problem: the guest star dropped out. Ozzie convinced Kris's brother to take a stab at acting. He stepped into the part, was bit by the show biz bug and even followed Ozzie into the editing suite to learn more about the business. Today Mark Harmon stars in season 17 of NCIS.

Ozzie's Girls: Speaking of... I thought this was terrible when it first ran. Watching a few episodes on youtube I wish they had the entire run. It's on videotape so it doesn't look like the O&H we remember, and some of it is clunky or worse. But the two girls are likable and charming, and Ozzie is still, well, Ozzie. (Susan Sennett would later walk out of the audition for Three'a Company because she considered it too risqué. Yet she played the title role in the unpleasant exploitation film Candy Snatchers.) Any O&H fan would hope that somehow this series can be made available again.

There are many great shows over the 14 years of O&H. I'd name An Evening with Hamlet as my favorite of the early years (John Carradine and Henry Kulky!). Rick's Dinner Guests is a fine example of one of the show's favorite concepts: how a simple misunderstanding can snowball into a comedic catastrophe. Years later The Special Cake would use the same theme. Season 6 had two classics in a row: Ozzie's Triple Banana Surprise, a surreal mixture of dreams and reality, followed by Tutti-Fruitti Ice Cream. I have a special fondness for the episodes where there are surprise musical performances. Ozzie teams up with jazz guitarist Perry Botkin in The Banjo Players, Rick plays flamenco guitar with Vincente Gomez in another show, Ozzie and Harriet revive their big band song stylings in A Cruise for Harriet and several other episodes.

I'll stop now. I've got to grab a Coke and put some film in my Kodak Starmite camera.
 
Last edited:

MatthewA

Lead Actor
Joined
Apr 19, 2000
Messages
8,890
Reaction score
2,538
Points
9,110
Age
37
Location
Salinas, CA
Real Name
Matthew
LA Law: "The Princess and the Pee" (12/8/1988): As Arnie goes over the terms of Douglas and Sheila's divorce, Douglas wants them both to be buried together in their family plot when they die. When Abby feels the pressures of trying to work, Police Lt. Bill Ringstrom (Wayne Northrop, Days of Our Lives) offers his help … and more. Ann goes to the gynecologist who gives her a device to test for pregnancy. Kuzak defends a man named Gil Tecowsky (Randolph Mantooth, Emergency!) accused of selling a college professor (Ron Leath) a modified classic sports car that left him incapacitated after an accident only to have Jonathan discover that the attorney (Mitchell Laurance, Not Necessarily the News) representing the plaintiff is not a member of the American BAR Association or any other accredited legal professional organization. Not revealing this information until after the case is over could cost Kuzak dearly because the judge (David Spielberg, Christine) calls it a breach of the Canon of Ethics. Abby asks Grace for a third continuation on her latest case. As Douglas interviews legal clerks, a 52-year-old interviewee (Nancy Vawter) reveals that she, too, is a recent divorcée.

From the "Sha Na Na Na" Department: David Spielberg (no relation to Steven), who plays Judge Reeves here, also played a family friend who gave Mallory a very bad touch on an episode of Family Ties. Sam Weisman, this episode's director, directed 54 episodes of that sitcom, which was then in its seventh and last season, but that episode, aired during its first, wasn't one of them.

R1 vs. R2: At this point, it honestly depends on whether picture or sound is more important to you. R1 wins on sound, R2 wins on picture. This is the last season where you have a choice.

LA Law: "Dummy Dearest" (12/15/1988): Kenny Peterson (Ronn Lucas), Jonathan's client accused of assaulting a cop, will only speak with a ventriloquist dummy. Dorothy Wyler begins her first day on the job. Ann represents Amanda Shaw (Jennifer Darling, Centurions), an actress whose wholesome image is threatened by tabloid accusations that dangerous liaisons with her daughter's 17-year-old boyfriend (Charlie Stratton) drove her daughter to suicide. Kuzak must go to court to defend his actions; Victor represents him. Ann and Stuart look for adoption options.

From the "Casting to Type" Department: Joel Brooks plays Kiefer Mitchell, the lawyer representing the tabloid Amanda Shaw is suing, after having played Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor's lawyer in the 1980 movie Stir Crazy. His most recent show was CBS's recently canceled My Sister Sam, whose second and last season competed with NBC's The Facts of Life in its ninth and last season. He was on the latter show as Mrs. Garrett's son Raymond, and his co-star on the CBS show, Jenny O'Hara, was the first actress to be fired from the longer-running show — and not the last — after its initial four-week 1979 tryout was over. Brooks also co-starred in the short-lived sitcoms Teachers Only and Hail to the Chief.

R1 vs. R2: Draw

LA Law: "To Live and Diet in LA" (1/5/1989): Kuzak invites Grace fishing to take her mind off the guilt she feels when the murderer she convicts is sentenced to death. She decides to come forward with the truth about how she got that conviction and offers the defendant a deal to exonerate himself while sending his fellow gang members to jail for a drive-by. Dave shows Roxanne his latest direct mail scheme: a diet video from a bankrupt distributor. When Arnie gets wind of it, Dave persuades him to do one for divorcing couples. Stuart and Ann interview a young pregnant woman named Kelly (Mary Tanner, The Cavanaughs) about potentially adopting her baby. Abby goes on a date with Lt. Ringstrom.

R1 vs R2: R1 because it's in stereo and has the original 20th Television Fox logo. The picture compression has gotten less bad by now.

LA Law: "I'm in the Nude for Love" (1/12/1989): Kuzak returns to work to represent a nudist colony whose existence is threatened when a centerfold named Tracy Shue (Teri Hatcher, Desperate Housewives) brings all the boys to the yard, causing a commotion in the surrounding areas. The firm must set personal feelings aside when Victor represents a hospital that refuses to perform euthanasia on a brain-dead woman. Allison Gottlieb (Joyce Hyser, This is Spinal Tap), the director of Arnie's video, takes Benny out with them to a bar, and he has to protect her from a leering drunk. He misinterprets her gesture of kindness after the fact when he sees her making out with Arnie in the office. Abby collaborates with Stuart on a case.

Eric Laneuville, this episode's director, played Luther on St. Elsewhere where he also directed several episodes.

R1 vs R2: R1 for the same reasons as the previous episode.

LA Law: "Victor/Victorious" (1/19/1989): Victor meets Allison and goes out with her while Arnie wants to know all about it. Abby's firm is running out of money as she meets with the client (Tzi Ma) on the case on which she is working with Stuart … until she fires him from the case and the client wants to go elsewhere. Roxanne is starting to get tired of her diet. Grace faces Lee Atkins (James Earl Jones) again over the case of a 60-year-old preacher (Teddy Wilson, That's My Mama!) accused of murder for shooting young attackers in his own church, and this time she's determined not to give in to his tactics. Stuart and Ann get good news from Arkansas.

From the "Cleaning Up My Act" Department: Teddy Wilson plays a preacher here after having played a pimp named Sweet Daddy Williams on Good Times.

R1 vs. R2: R1 for being in stereo. Neither have original logo.

LA Law: "The Plane Mutiny" (2/9/1989): Dave offers optimistic sales projections for Arnie's divorce video, but when Leland and Douglas get wind of it, they argue that it constitutes the practicing of law and therefore the revenues it generates should legally go to them. Arnie's lawyer, Lily White (Christine Belford), argues he should claim to have made the deal under duress. The firm meets Stuart and Ann's new baby, Kelsey. Victor handles the case of a hitman (Graham Beckel) who killed a man's ex-wife based on a statement he made in anger while drunk and going through a divorce; Grace represents the plaintiff. A technical problem with the plane grounds the flight Douglas is on, and his attempt to get off is a failure until he gets a court order that gets him off at a huge cost. Victor works with a private investigator (Lindsay Frost) to track down a witness.

From the "Having My Baby" Department: When Christine Belford appeared on The Golden Girls, it was as Rose's daughter. When Alan Rachins appeared, it was as an actor whom Blanche told her granddaughter was actually her daughter.

R1 vs R2: R2 has superior sound (though both are mono, the R2 sounds less flat and dull), but only R1 has the original logo.

LA Law: "Izzy Ackerman or Is He Not?" (2/16/1989): Roxanne takes her frustrations out on Tammy (Morgan Brittany, Dallas), another member of her diet group, System 21. Kuzak handles the case of a man (Michael Warren, Hill Street Blues) whose wife died because a hospital wouldn't take her because she didn't have insurance. Leland handles the case of a mortuary that almost buried the wrong body, but no one would have known the difference if one of the pallbearers hadn't dropped him. His widow (Kathleen Freeman, Singin' in the Rain) fears the worst. Leland asks the judge (Raye Birk, The Naked Gun) to issue an injunction preventing any hospitals from doing anything with the body until the real body find and identify it … if they can find all the individual parts! Abby tries to manage dating and motherhood. Douglas wants to make a video of his own.

From the "Reunited (And It Feels So Good)" Department: In addition to Kathleen Freeman and Raye Birk would later appear together in Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult. That movie would also feature Ann B. Davis, who got the role of Alice on The Brady Bunch that Freeman was initially considered for. It also had another Dallas cast member: Priscilla Presley.

R1 vs R2: R1 for stereo sound, R2 for the original logo.

LA Law: "The Accidental Jurist" (2/23/1989): Ann tells Abby the truth about the cop she's dating. Kuzak represents a gold medal-winning gay athlete (Brian MacNamara) who lost a cereal endorsement deal for coming out of the contract. They pick a closeted gay judge (Donald Moffat) to preside over the case. Ann takes the baby to the office while interviewing nannies; none of them meet her standards. Roxanne wants a separation, so Dave stays with Victor and Allison.

R1 vs R2: R1 for stereo sound. Neither have the original logo.
 

bmasters9

Producer
Joined
Jan 8, 2008
Messages
4,229
Reaction score
3,999
Points
4,110
Real Name
Ben Masters
LA Law: "The Princess and the Pee" (12/8/1988): As Arnie goes over the terms of Douglas and Sheila's divorce, Douglas wants them both to be buried together in their family plot when they die. When Abby feels the pressures of trying to work, Police Lt. Bill Ringstrom (Wayne Northrop, Days of Our Lives) offers his help … and more. Ann goes to the gynecologist who gives her a device to test for pregnancy. Kuzak defends a man named Gil Tecowsky (Randolph Mantooth, Emergency!) accused of selling a college professor (Ron Leath) a modified classic sports car that left him incapacitated after an accident only to have Jonathan discover that the attorney (Mitchell Laurance, Not Necessarily the News) representing the plaintiff is not a member of the American BAR Association or any other accredited legal professional organization. Not revealing this information until after the case is over could cost Kuzak dearly because the judge (David Spielberg, Christine) calls it a breach of the Canon of Ethics. Abby asks Grace for a third continuation on her latest case. As Douglas interviews legal clerks, a 52-year-old interviewee (Nancy Vawter) reveals that she, too, is a recent divorcée.

From the "Sha Na Na Na" Department: David Spielberg (no relation to Steven), who plays Judge Reeves here, also played a family friend who gave Mallory a very bad touch on an episode of Family Ties. Sam Weisman, this episode's director, directed 54 episodes of that sitcom, which was then in its seventh and last season, but that episode, aired during its first, wasn't one of them.

R1 vs. R2: At this point, it honestly depends on whether picture or sound is more important to you. R1 wins on sound, R2 wins on picture. This is the last season where you have a choice.

LA Law: "Dummy Dearest" (12/15/1988): Kenny Peterson (Ronn Lucas), Jonathan's client accused of assaulting a cop, will only speak with a ventriloquist dummy. Dorothy Wyler begins her first day on the job. Ann represents Amanda Shaw (Jennifer Darling, Centurions), an actress whose wholesome image is threatened by tabloid accusations that dangerous liaisons with her daughter's 17-year-old boyfriend (Charlie Stratton) drove her daughter to suicide. Kuzak must go to court to defend his actions; Victor represents him. Ann and Stuart look for adoption options.

From the "Casting to Type" Department: Joel Brooks plays Kiefer Mitchell, the lawyer representing the tabloid Amanda Shaw is suing, after having played Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor's lawyer in the 1980 movie Stir Crazy. His most recent show was CBS's recently canceled My Sister Sam, whose second and last season competed with NBC's The Facts of Life in its ninth and last season. He was on the latter show as Mrs. Garrett's son Raymond, and his co-star on the CBS show, Jenny O'Hara, was the first actress to be fired from the longer-running show — and not the last — after its initial four-week 1979 tryout was over. Brooks also co-starred in the short-lived sitcoms Teachers Only and Hail to the Chief.

R1 vs. R2: Draw

LA Law: "To Live and Diet in LA" (1/5/1989): Kuzak invites Grace fishing to take her mind off the guilt she feels when the murderer she convicts is sentenced to death. She decides to come forward with the truth about how she got that conviction and offers the defendant a deal to exonerate himself while sending his fellow gang members to jail for a drive-by. Dave shows Roxanne his latest direct mail scheme: a diet video from a bankrupt distributor. When Arnie gets wind of it, Dave persuades him to do one for divorcing couples. Stuart and Ann interview a young pregnant woman named Kelly (Mary Tanner, The Cavanaughs) about potentially adopting her baby. Abby goes on a date with Lt. Ringstrom.

R1 vs R2: R1 because it's in stereo and has the original 20th Television Fox logo. The picture compression has gotten less bad by now.

LA Law: "I'm in the Nude for Love" (1/12/1989): Kuzak returns to work to represent a nudist colony whose existence is threatened when a centerfold named Tracy Shue (Teri Hatcher, Desperate Housewives) brings all the boys to the yard, causing a commotion in the surrounding areas. The firm must set personal feelings aside when Victor represents a hospital that refuses to perform euthanasia on a brain-dead woman. Allison Gottlieb (Joyce Hyser, This is Spinal Tap), the director of Arnie's video, takes Benny out with them to a bar, and he has to protect her from a leering drunk. He misinterprets her gesture of kindness after the fact when he sees her making out with Arnie in the office. Abby collaborates with Stuart on a case.

Eric Laneuville, this episode's director, played Luther on St. Elsewhere where he also directed several episodes.

R1 vs R2: R1 for the same reasons as the previous episode.

LA Law: "Victor/Victorious" (1/19/1989): Victor meets Allison and goes out with her while Arnie wants to know all about it. Abby's firm is running out of money as she meets with the client (Tzi Ma) on the case on which she is working with Stuart … until she fires him from the case and the client wants to go elsewhere. Roxanne is starting to get tired of her diet. Grace faces Lee Atkins (James Earl Jones) again over the case of a 60-year-old preacher (Teddy Wilson, That's My Mama!) accused of murder for shooting young attackers in his own church, and this time she's determined not to give in to his tactics. Stuart and Ann get good news from Arkansas.

From the "Cleaning Up My Act" Department: Teddy Wilson plays a preacher here after having played a pimp named Sweet Daddy Williams on Good Times.

R1 vs. R2: R1 for being in stereo. Neither have original logo.

LA Law: "The Plane Mutiny" (2/9/1989): Dave offers optimistic sales projections for Arnie's divorce video, but when Leland and Douglas get wind of it, they argue that it constitutes the practicing of law and therefore the revenues it generates should legally go to them. Arnie's lawyer, Lily White (Christine Belford), argues he should claim to have made the deal under duress. The firm meets Stuart and Ann's new baby, Kelsey. Victor handles the case of a hitman (Graham Beckel) who killed a man's ex-wife based on a statement he made in anger while drunk and going through a divorce; Grace represents the plaintiff. A technical problem with the plane grounds the flight Douglas is on, and his attempt to get off is a failure until he gets a court order that gets him off at a huge cost. Victor works with a private investigator (Lindsay Frost) to track down a witness.

From the "Having My Baby" Department: When Christine Belford appeared on The Golden Girls, it was as Rose's daughter. When Alan Rachins appeared, it was as an actor whom Blanche told her granddaughter was actually her daughter.

R1 vs R2: R2 has superior sound (though both are mono, the R2 sounds less flat and dull), but only R1 has the original logo.

LA Law: "Izzy Ackerman or Is He Not?" (2/16/1989): Roxanne takes her frustrations out on Tammy (Morgan Brittany, Dallas), another member of her diet group, System 21. Kuzak handles the case of a man (Michael Warren, Hill Street Blues) whose wife died because a hospital wouldn't take her because she didn't have insurance. Leland handles the case of a mortuary that almost buried the wrong body, but no one would have known the difference if one of the pallbearers hadn't dropped him. His widow (Kathleen Freeman, Singin' in the Rain) fears the worst. Leland asks the judge (Raye Birk, The Naked Gun) to issue an injunction preventing any hospitals from doing anything with the body until the real body find and identify it … if they can find all the individual parts! Abby tries to manage dating and motherhood. Douglas wants to make a video of his own.

From the "Reunited (And It Feels So Good)" Department: In addition to Kathleen Freeman and Raye Birk would later appear together in Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult. That movie would also feature Ann B. Davis, who got the role of Alice on The Brady Bunch that Freeman was initially considered for. It also had another Dallas cast member: Priscilla Presley.

R1 vs R2: R1 for stereo sound, R2 for the original logo.

LA Law: "The Accidental Jurist" (2/23/1989): Ann tells Abby the truth about the cop she's dating. Kuzak represents a gold medal-winning gay athlete (Brian MacNamara) who lost a cereal endorsement deal for coming out of the contract. They pick a closeted gay judge (Donald Moffat) to preside over the case. Ann takes the baby to the office while interviewing nannies; none of them meet her standards. Roxanne wants a separation, so Dave stays with Victor and Allison.

R1 vs R2: R1 for stereo sound. Neither have the original logo.
So three of those episodes on the second-season release here have the 20th Television Fox logo of the NBC broadcasts (in addition to one other having it on the Region 2 version)? Impressive!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

MatthewA

Lead Actor
Joined
Apr 19, 2000
Messages
8,890
Reaction score
2,538
Points
9,110
Age
37
Location
Salinas, CA
Real Name
Matthew
So three of those episodes on the second-season release here have the 20th Television Fox logo of the NBC broadcasts (in addition to one other having it on the Region 2 version)? Impressive!
This is season 3.
 

bmasters9

Producer
Joined
Jan 8, 2008
Messages
4,229
Reaction score
3,999
Points
4,110
Real Name
Ben Masters
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

Purple Wig

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Jan 21, 2019
Messages
97
Reaction score
275
Points
11
Age
43
Real Name
Alan
LA Law: "The Princess and the Pee" (12/8/1988): As Arnie goes over the terms of Douglas and Sheila's divorce, Douglas wants them both to be buried together in their family plot when they die. When Abby feels the pressures of trying to work, Police Lt. Bill Ringstrom (Wayne Northrop, Days of Our Lives) offers his help … and more. Ann goes to the gynecologist who gives her a device to test for pregnancy. Kuzak defends a man named Gil Tecowsky (Randolph Mantooth, Emergency!) accused of selling a college professor (Ron Leath) a modified classic sports car that left him incapacitated after an accident only to have Jonathan discover that the attorney (Mitchell Laurance, Not Necessarily the News) representing the plaintiff is not a member of the American BAR Association or any other accredited legal professional organization. Not revealing this information until after the case is over could cost Kuzak dearly because the judge (David Spielberg, Christine) calls it a breach of the Canon of Ethics. Abby asks Grace for a third continuation on her latest case. As Douglas interviews legal clerks, a 52-year-old interviewee (Nancy Vawter) reveals that she, too, is a recent divorcée.

From the "Sha Na Na Na" Department: David Spielberg (no relation to Steven), who plays Judge Reeves here, also played a family friend who gave Mallory a very bad touch on an episode of Family Ties. Sam Weisman, this episode's director, directed 54 episodes of that sitcom, which was then in its seventh and last season, but that episode, aired during its first, wasn't one of them.

R1 vs. R2: At this point, it honestly depends on whether picture or sound is more important to you. R1 wins on sound, R2 wins on picture. This is the last season where you have a choice.

LA Law: "Dummy Dearest" (12/15/1988): Kenny Peterson (Ronn Lucas), Jonathan's client accused of assaulting a cop, will only speak with a ventriloquist dummy. Dorothy Wyler begins her first day on the job. Ann represents Amanda Shaw (Jennifer Darling, Centurions), an actress whose wholesome image is threatened by tabloid accusations that dangerous liaisons with her daughter's 17-year-old boyfriend (Charlie Stratton) drove her daughter to suicide. Kuzak must go to court to defend his actions; Victor represents him. Ann and Stuart look for adoption options.

From the "Casting to Type" Department: Joel Brooks plays Kiefer Mitchell, the lawyer representing the tabloid Amanda Shaw is suing, after having played Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor's lawyer in the 1980 movie Stir Crazy. His most recent show was CBS's recently canceled My Sister Sam, whose second and last season competed with NBC's The Facts of Life in its ninth and last season. He was on the latter show as Mrs. Garrett's son Raymond, and his co-star on the CBS show, Jenny O'Hara, was the first actress to be fired from the longer-running show — and not the last — after its initial four-week 1979 tryout was over. Brooks also co-starred in the short-lived sitcoms Teachers Only and Hail to the Chief.

R1 vs. R2: Draw

LA Law: "To Live and Diet in LA" (1/5/1989): Kuzak invites Grace fishing to take her mind off the guilt she feels when the murderer she convicts is sentenced to death. She decides to come forward with the truth about how she got that conviction and offers the defendant a deal to exonerate himself while sending his fellow gang members to jail for a drive-by. Dave shows Roxanne his latest direct mail scheme: a diet video from a bankrupt distributor. When Arnie gets wind of it, Dave persuades him to do one for divorcing couples. Stuart and Ann interview a young pregnant woman named Kelly (Mary Tanner, The Cavanaughs) about potentially adopting her baby. Abby goes on a date with Lt. Ringstrom.

R1 vs R2: R1 because it's in stereo and has the original 20th Television Fox logo. The picture compression has gotten less bad by now.

LA Law: "I'm in the Nude for Love" (1/12/1989): Kuzak returns to work to represent a nudist colony whose existence is threatened when a centerfold named Tracy Shue (Teri Hatcher, Desperate Housewives) brings all the boys to the yard, causing a commotion in the surrounding areas. The firm must set personal feelings aside when Victor represents a hospital that refuses to perform euthanasia on a brain-dead woman. Allison Gottlieb (Joyce Hyser, This is Spinal Tap), the director of Arnie's video, takes Benny out with them to a bar, and he has to protect her from a leering drunk. He misinterprets her gesture of kindness after the fact when he sees her making out with Arnie in the office. Abby collaborates with Stuart on a case.

Eric Laneuville, this episode's director, played Luther on St. Elsewhere where he also directed several episodes.

R1 vs R2: R1 for the same reasons as the previous episode.

LA Law: "Victor/Victorious" (1/19/1989): Victor meets Allison and goes out with her while Arnie wants to know all about it. Abby's firm is running out of money as she meets with the client (Tzi Ma) on the case on which she is working with Stuart … until she fires him from the case and the client wants to go elsewhere. Roxanne is starting to get tired of her diet. Grace faces Lee Atkins (James Earl Jones) again over the case of a 60-year-old preacher (Teddy Wilson, That's My Mama!) accused of murder for shooting young attackers in his own church, and this time she's determined not to give in to his tactics. Stuart and Ann get good news from Arkansas.

From the "Cleaning Up My Act" Department: Teddy Wilson plays a preacher here after having played a pimp named Sweet Daddy Williams on Good Times.

R1 vs. R2: R1 for being in stereo. Neither have original logo.

LA Law: "The Plane Mutiny" (2/9/1989): Dave offers optimistic sales projections for Arnie's divorce video, but when Leland and Douglas get wind of it, they argue that it constitutes the practicing of law and therefore the revenues it generates should legally go to them. Arnie's lawyer, Lily White (Christine Belford), argues he should claim to have made the deal under duress. The firm meets Stuart and Ann's new baby, Kelsey. Victor handles the case of a hitman (Graham Beckel) who killed a man's ex-wife based on a statement he made in anger while drunk and going through a divorce; Grace represents the plaintiff. A technical problem with the plane grounds the flight Douglas is on, and his attempt to get off is a failure until he gets a court order that gets him off at a huge cost. Victor works with a private investigator (Lindsay Frost) to track down a witness.

From the "Having My Baby" Department: When Christine Belford appeared on The Golden Girls, it was as Rose's daughter. When Alan Rachins appeared, it was as an actor whom Blanche told her granddaughter was actually her daughter.

R1 vs R2: R2 has superior sound (though both are mono, the R2 sounds less flat and dull), but only R1 has the original logo.

LA Law: "Izzy Ackerman or Is He Not?" (2/16/1989): Roxanne takes her frustrations out on Tammy (Morgan Brittany, Dallas), another member of her diet group, System 21. Kuzak handles the case of a man (Michael Warren, Hill Street Blues) whose wife died because a hospital wouldn't take her because she didn't have insurance. Leland handles the case of a mortuary that almost buried the wrong body, but no one would have known the difference if one of the pallbearers hadn't dropped him. His widow (Kathleen Freeman, Singin' in the Rain) fears the worst. Leland asks the judge (Raye Birk, The Naked Gun) to issue an injunction preventing any hospitals from doing anything with the body until the real body find and identify it … if they can find all the individual parts! Abby tries to manage dating and motherhood. Douglas wants to make a video of his own.

From the "Reunited (And It Feels So Good)" Department: In addition to Kathleen Freeman and Raye Birk would later appear together in Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult. That movie would also feature Ann B. Davis, who got the role of Alice on The Brady Bunch that Freeman was initially considered for. It also had another Dallas cast member: Priscilla Presley.

R1 vs R2: R1 for stereo sound, R2 for the original logo.

LA Law: "The Accidental Jurist" (2/23/1989): Ann tells Abby the truth about the cop she's dating. Kuzak represents a gold medal-winning gay athlete (Brian MacNamara) who lost a cereal endorsement deal for coming out of the contract. They pick a closeted gay judge (Donald Moffat) to preside over the case. Ann takes the baby to the office while interviewing nannies; none of them meet her standards. Roxanne wants a separation, so Dave stays with Victor and Allison.

R1 vs R2: R1 for stereo sound. Neither have the original logo.
I was barely paying any attention to any new prime time shows at the time this was airing but your summaries have made me think I might give a few episodes a try.
 

Flashgear

Screenwriter
Joined
Nov 23, 2007
Messages
1,769
Reaction score
5,828
Points
1,610
Location
Alberta Canada
Real Name
Randall
George Peppard's Banacek character is the epitome of '70s cool, as the Boston based, jet setting and womanizing insurance investigator who works for a percentage on any big insurance loss recovery...I decided to revisit some of the episodes from the 1972-74 series, which aired as one of the rotating segments of NBC's Wednesday Mystery Movies...

Banacek S2E7, Fly Me - If You Can Find Me (Feb. 19, 1974) D: Bernard L. Kowalski, W: Anthony Wilson, Harold Livingston. Guest cast: Sterling Hayden, Victoria Principal, Jack Kelly, Pat Quinn, Larry Ward, Charles H. Gray, Richard Roat, Carlos Romero.

A charter airlines DC-8 suddenly encounters critical engine mechanical problems in flight to Las Vegas and is diverted for an emergency landing on an isolated air strip in the middle of nowhere. The airliner brakes hard on the too-short runway and blows 6 tires. They are met by a very helpful mechanic on the otherwise deserted airport. The DC-8's captain (Charles H. Gray of Rawhide) makes a quick call on a payphone to the airline's owner Lou Wayne (Jack Kelly of Maverick) to advise him that the airliner will need repairs and technical support that is unavailable at this small air strip. As the air crew and stewardesses depart for a local hotel, they leave the flight engineer to stand watch overnight...they return the next morning to discover that their man has been murdered and the helpful mechanic is now missing...and that their huge DC-8 airliner has apparently vanished!

My screen caps from the Hart Sharp/Arts Alliance/TV Guide DVDs which came out way back in 2007...
Banacek 2.JPG

Banacek 5.JPG

Banacek 4.JPG

Banacek 7.JPG

Banacek 8.JPG

Banacek 9.JPG


I've always loved the panorama of Banacek's opening title sequence...the Boston river, the Longfellow Bridge...and Billy Goldenberg's brilliant theme music, which I think is among the all time great television music scores...
Banacek 10.JPG

Banacek 11.JPG

Banacek 12.JPG

Banacek 13.JPG

Banacek 14.JPG

Banacek 58.JPG


Murray Matheson plays Felix Mullholland, Banacek's partner and cultured antiquarian book dealer...
Banacek 17.JPG


Banacek's beautiful ride to Logan international airport is his 1936 Packard...
Banacek 18.JPG


His ride in Nevada, as provided by his private chauffeur (Ralph Manza) is far less fancy...
Banacek 19.JPG


A belligerent Tony Fowler (Sterling Hayden, General Jack D. Ripper from Dr. Strangelove) owns this desert strip and leans on Banacek with his muscle Roy Gilbert (Dick Durock), letting him know he isn't entirely welcome...Fowler is Lou Wayne's (Jack Kelly's) old and now rich partner, crippled years before in a crash in Vietnam...resentful, angry and now positioned to takeover a financially distressed Wayne airlines...
Banacek 20.JPG

Banacek 21.JPG


Charlotte and Len Malloy (Pat Reid and Larry Ward of The Dakotas) operate the small airport and are among Banacek's many suspects...how the hell does a huge 4 engine jet airliner worth 6 million dollars just disappear?
Banacek 22.JPG


Another of the suspect characters is clingy stewardess Brooke (Victoria Principal, 4 years before Dallas), whom we get to see in a bikini, thank God...
Banacek 24.JPG

Banacek 25.JPG


Continued next post...
 
Last edited:

Flashgear

Screenwriter
Joined
Nov 23, 2007
Messages
1,769
Reaction score
5,828
Points
1,610
Location
Alberta Canada
Real Name
Randall
Banacek S2E7 Fly Me - If You Can Find Me (Feb. 19, 1974) continued...Banacek shares a beer with ultra-rich Tony Fowler (Sterling Hayden) and stewardess Brooke (Victoria Principal), both of whom are suspects in the missing $6 million DC-8 airliner that apparently disappeared into thin air!
Banacek 26.JPG

Banacek 27.JPG

Banacek 28.JPG


Another suspect is captain Dave Roberts himself (Charles H. Gray)...
Banacek 29.JPG


And more suspicious types with co-pilot Stan Price (Richard Roat) and the Airline owner Lou Wayne (Jack Kelly)...all are in a position to gain, and lose, in the outright theft of the DC-8...
Banacek 31.JPG

Banacek 33.JPG


Luscious stewardess Brooke (Victoria Principal) clings to Banacek closely...what is her game?
Banacek 34.JPG


Larry Ward, a little older than we see him in The Dakotas...he's a guy that I gained enormous respect and admiration for with his solid performance in that brilliant, but short lived series...
Banacek 35.JPG


Banacek and his chauffeur Jay reconnoiter the surrounding desert, and find themselves shot at by a sniper in a helicopter owned by Fowler...warning shots for trespassers, they are assured...
Banacek 36.JPG


Banacek convinces Fowler and Wayne to fly another of their DC-8 in a bid to re-create the mystery of the other airliners disappearance...
Banacek 37.JPG


Upon landing, Banacek does the big reveal of how the plane disappeared and who is responsible for the theft... and the two murders in making it happen...
Banacek 38.JPG


George Peppard is perfect as the suave, cultured and brilliant Banacek...
Banacek 40.JPG

Banacek 60.JPG

Banacek 61.JPG

Banacek 59.JPG


The Real Deal Big Band's cover of Billy Goldenberg's great Banacek theme is worth a listen, especially if you are a smooth jazz fan...

An original opening sequence for one of the episodes...last time I checked, all of the Banacek episodes were on Youtube, but they have now been removed, darn it all...I'm glad to have the whole series on DVD...
 
Last edited:

Dan McW

Supporting Actor
Joined
Aug 12, 2004
Messages
544
Reaction score
360
Points
610
Real Name
Dan
Great posts on Banacek, Randall. I've been a fan of classic murder mystery novels (published mainly between the world wars and extending maybe to 1950-55 or so) all my life, and I particularly love locked-room/impossible-crime tales--which Banacek specialized in. I didn't watch Banacek as a kid, but it was a thrill as an adult to find a TV series devoted to my favorite sub-genre of mystery stories.
 

Jeff Flugel

Screenwriter
Premium
Joined
Jan 7, 1999
Messages
1,956
Reaction score
5,522
Points
1,610
Age
52
Location
Osaka, Japan
Website
thestalkingmoon.weebly.com
Real Name
Jeff Flugel
View attachment 68932

George Peppard is perfect as the suave, cultured and brilliant Banacek...[/MEDIA]
Yes, agree with Dan McW, fantastic posts above, Randall! I watched this particular Banacek episode several years back and remember enjoying it very much. George Peppard's Banacek is one smug bastard, with a perpetual smirk on his face, but he can walk the walk. It's great to get a guest star of the caliber of Sterling Hayden to appear in the series, and Victoria Principal (in one of her earliest roles) is supreme eye candy.

Great posts on Banacek, Randall. I've been a fan of classic murder mystery novels (published mainly between the world wars and extending maybe to 1950-55 or so) all my life, and I particularly love locked-room/impossible-crime tales--which Banacek specialized in. I didn't watch Banacek as a kid, but it was a thrill as an adult to find a TV series devoted to my favorite sub-genre of mystery stories.
Big fan of classic murder mysteries myself, Dan. Agreed on Banacek, a show I also first discovered later in life but have enjoyed fully. Some really clever "locked room" type mysteries in this show, and I love the wrap-ups at the end of each episode, in which Banacek tells us how the impossible crime was committed. I'm glad to have both seasons on those TV Guide DVD sets that Randall referenced above. Not sure if they were of the same caliber, but I'd like to see other short-run NBC mystery movie series like Cool Million, Tenafly, Madigan, McCoy and most especially Hec Ramsey, get released.
 
Last edited:

Jeff Flugel

Screenwriter
Premium
Joined
Jan 7, 1999
Messages
1,956
Reaction score
5,522
Points
1,610
Age
52
Location
Osaka, Japan
Website
thestalkingmoon.weebly.com
Real Name
Jeff Flugel
The Champions - 1.25 "Desert Journey"
This ITC series seems to be very popular with many fans, but it's never been one of my favorites. I am slowly coming around to liking the show; it has a great premise and a likeable enough cast, but it does come across as a more cheaply made, juvenile version of the usual slick and stylish ITC "action man" type of series. Yank Stuart Damon and Brits Alexandra Bastedo and William Gaunt star as three government agents with superpowers (gained after being rescued from a plane crash by a mysterious society living hidden away in the Himalayas) who tackle various cases of espionage, terrorism and the like. Their superpowers are not always clearly defined or consistent, but include telepathy, super strength and hearing, the ability to hold their breath underwater for unusually long periods of time, etc. The show was clearly ahead of its time and, while not taking full advantage of its premise, nonetheless features some fun super-heroic moments scattered amidst the more mundane spy plot elements.

I chose this episode for its impressive pair of guest stars: Jeremy Brett and Roger Delgado. Brett (looking impossibly young here) is the Bey, the spoiled descendant of the ousted royal family of a Middle Eastern kingdom on the brink of civil war. The Champions are tasked with returning the reluctant Bey to his country, but the journey is fraught with peril, as an opposing faction is determined to not let the Bey enter the country alive. While nearly all of the '60s ITC series had their fair share of studio sets subbing for exotic locations, this one is even more set-bound than usual, with lots of faky desert backdrops. Still, leads Stuart Damon and Alexandra Bastedo take center stage and are stunning physical specimens; their good looks and charm overcome the thin characterizations and keep this potboiler bubbling along nicely. The Champions is the rare ITC series with a rather pedestrian main title sequence, but the episode underscore itself (done by a different composer, the great Edwin Astley) is good stuff. Given its high profile in the ITC canon, I expect this to be a shoe-in for a nice, shiny Blu-Ray upgrade eventually, courtesy of Network.








Bonanza - 2.25 "The Duke"
Enjoyed the hell out of this episode, which features an effective performance by Maxwell Reed as an arrogant jerk of a British boxer, the "Duke" of the title, who arrives in Virginia City with his hard-drinking manager (J. Pat O'Malley) and puts everyone's backs up with his nasty ways. When the Duke goes too far, beating up and bullying Ponderosa hand, J.D. (Jason Evers), saloon gal, Marge (Randy Stuart), and even his loyal manager, it's time for man mountain Hoss Cartwright to step into the ring and smack some humility into the creep. The final boxing match is a rousing crowd-pleaser, but even in victory, Hoss maintains his humble and kind heart. The towering, 6' 3 1/2" Reed displays a lot of charisma and solid acting chops; apparently he headlined his own series in the late '50s back in the UK, called Captain David Grief. I'd like to see it.

The Dakotas - 1.20 "A Nice Girl from Goliath"
Can't add much to Randall's terrific photo essay of this episode from the previous page - it's a real humdinger. Curvaceous brunette beauty Audrey Dalton (and her long, luscious neck) prove too much for callow deputy Del (Chad Everett) to handle, and he can't help but be the next sap to fall for the no-good wench. Luckily, seen-it-all reformed gunslinger J.D. (Jack Elam - for me, the star of the show) soon arrives on the scene and reads her like an open book. This series is easily the cream of the WB western crop, at least production quality-wise (Maverick, with its glorious scripting and James Garner persona, edges it out overall); the look of the ramshackle and dingy mining town of Goliath is extremely realistic, and the climactic gunfight is well-staged and exciting. There's a high-gloss sheen to this series which makes it stand out from its WB brethren, and on top of that, it's a very cynical, well-acted series...a real pity that it didn't get a second season.

The Persuaders - 1.24 "Someone's Waiting"
The final episode of this fun, frothy globe-trotting confection finds playboy millionaire crime fighters Lord Brett Sinclair (Roger Moore) and Danny Wilde (Tony Curtis) investigating an attempt to fix the outcome of an upcoming car race, and - more importantly - an imminent threat on Brett's life, somehow tied to his racing past. Lots of nice, rainy London exteriors, plus a brief appearance by Miss Moneypenny herself, Lois Maxwell...but as always, what makes this show special is not its standard adventure show plots, but the magical chemistry between Moore and Curtis, who constantly banter and bicker like a well-oiled comedy duo of old. And needless to say, this lush series, the most expensive produced up to that time by ITC (apparently 100,000 British pounds per episode in 1971 money), positively sparkles on Blu-Ray. John Barry's main theme is one for the ages:


My Three Sons
1.10 "Lonesome George"
1.11 "Spring Will Be a Little Late"
A couple of strong episodes of this long-running '60s sitcom. To escape the clamoring hordes of fans at his hotel, comedian George Gobel is convinced by Bub to stay over at the Douglas house. This culminates in a very funny extended sequence where Gobel and Fred MacMurray wander around the house at night, unaware of each other's presence. "Spring..." is more typical family sitcom fare, but still nicely done, as middle son Robbie (Don Grady, who comes off as an actual believable teen) struggles with confused feelings for his long-time mechanic pal, who has suddenly blossomed from grease monkey to fragrant, feminine beauty (Marta Kristen), and who is, understandably, unwilling to put up with the nickname "Pig" any longer. Kristen would go on to appear two more times later in the series' run, but as different characters.



Thunderbirds
- 1.23 "Attack of the Alligators"
Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons - 1.31 "Attack on Cloudbase"
Rounded out several days' viewing with a pair of Gerry Anderson ITC Supermarionation classics. Not having grown up with these beloved puppet shows, I don't have the strong sense of nostalgia that many fans hold for them...so watching them is more of an academic exercise for me. I can guarantee, though, that had I watched these as a 8-to-12 year-old kid, I would have gobbled them up like M & Ms. Now I enjoy them for their frankly astonishing craftsmanship and detailed sets, props, vehicles and special effects, all lovingly made by hand, with obvious painstaking care and extraordinary skill. Barry Gray's pulse-pounded musical scores really add to the cumulative effect.
 
Last edited:

JohnHopper

Screenwriter
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
1,622
Reaction score
3,584
Points
1,610
Real Name
John Hopper
The Champions - 1.25 "Desert Journey"
This ITC series seems to be very popular with many fans, but it's never been one of my favorites. I am slowly coming around to liking the show; it has a great premise and a likeable enough cast, but it does come across as a more cheaply made, juvenile version of the usual slick and stylish ITC "action man" type of series. Yank Stuart Damon and Brits Alexandra Bastedo and William Gaunt star as three government agents with superpowers (gained after being rescued from a plane crash by a mysterious society living hidden away in the Himalayas) who tackle various cases of espionage, terrorism and the like. Their superpowers are not always clearly defined or consistent, but include telepathy, super strength and hearing, the ability to hold their breath underwater for unusually long periods of time, etc. The show was clearly ahead of its time and, while not taking full advantage of its premise, nonetheless features some fun super-heroic moments scattered amidst the more mundane spy plot elements.
I used to enjoy it as a kid during the seventies.
Watching it again in the previous decade, I realized that the show was limited and stiff.
Espionage-wise, it's not as edgy as Mission: Impossible.
In the end, it plays like a comic book adventure and the leads are not that engaging.
What is strange about the series concept: spies hiding their odd status inside their secret organisation (secrecy inside secrecy).
It's far better than the standard ITC series. Nowadays, I can watch it for a specific story.

The Persuaders - 1.24 "Someone's Waiting"
The final episode of this fun, frothy globe-trotting confection finds playboy millionaire crime fighters Lord Brett Sinclair (Roger Moore) and Danny Wilde (Tony Curtis) investigating an attempt to fix the outcome of an upcoming car race, and - more importantly - an imminent threat on Brett's life, somehow tied to his racing past. Lots of nice, rainy London exteriors, plus a brief appearance by Miss Moneypenny herself, Lois Maxwell...but as always, what makes this show special is not its standard adventure show plots, but the magical chemistry between Moore and Curtis, who constantly banter and bicker like a well-oiled comedy duo of old. And needless to say, this lush series, the most expensive produced up to that time by ITC (apparently 100,000 British pounds per episode in 1971 money), positively sparkles on Blu-Ray. John Barry's main theme is one for the ages:
That show is a marvel because of the exciting duo. I still enjoy it today.
Good shows are related to great leads!
Find another first-rate duo along with The Wild Wild West and The Avengers.
Back then, it was hot and edgy now you see how it is made.
 

Mysto

Screenwriter
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
1,355
Reaction score
2,477
Points
1,610
Location
Florida
Real Name
marv long
Great posts on Banacek, Randall. I've been a fan of classic murder mystery novels (published mainly between the world wars and extending maybe to 1950-55 or so) all my life, and I particularly love locked-room/impossible-crime tales--which Banacek specialized in. I didn't watch Banacek as a kid, but it was a thrill as an adult to find a TV series devoted to my favorite sub-genre of mystery stories.
You probably already are aware but just in case you haven't, check out Jonathan Creek
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dan McW

Mysto

Screenwriter
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
1,355
Reaction score
2,477
Points
1,610
Location
Florida
Real Name
marv long
The Champions - 1.25 "Desert Journey"
This ITC series seems to be very popular with many fans, but it's never been one of my favorites. I am slowly coming around to liking the show; it has a great premise and a likeable enough cast, but it does come across as a more cheaply made, juvenile version of the usual slick and stylish ITC "action man" type of series. Yank Stuart Damon and Brits Alexandra Bastedo and William Gaunt star as three government agents with superpowers (gained after being rescued from a plane crash by a mysterious society living hidden away in the Himalayas) who tackle various cases of espionage, terrorism and the like. Their superpowers are not always clearly defined or consistent, but include telepathy, super strength and hearing, the ability to hold their breath underwater for unusually long periods of time, etc. The show was clearly ahead of its time and, while not taking full advantage of its premise, nonetheless features some fun super-heroic moments scattered amidst the more mundane spy plot elements.

I chose this episode for its impressive pair of guest stars: Jeremy Brett and Roger Delgado. Brett (looking impossibly young here) is the Bey, the spoiled descendant of the ousted royal family of a Middle Eastern kingdom on the brink of civil war. The Champions are tasked with returning the reluctant Bey to his country, but the journey is fraught with peril, as an opposing faction is determined to not let the Bey enter the country alive. While nearly all of the '60s ITC series had their fair share of studio sets subbing for exotic locations, this one is even more set-bound than usual, with lots of faky desert backdrops. Still, leads Stuart Damon and Alexandra Bastedo take center stage and are stunning physical specimens; their good looks and charm overcome the thin characterizations and keep this potboiler bubbling along nicely. The Champions is the rare ITC series with a rather pedestrian main title sequence, but the episode underscore itself (done by a different composer, the great Edwin Astley) is good stuff. Given its high profile in the ITC canon, I expect this to be a shoe-in for a nice, shiny Blu-Ray upgrade eventually, courtesy of Network.








Bonanza - 2.25 "The Duke"
Enjoyed the hell out of this episode, which features an effective performance by Maxwell Reed as the arrogant jerk of a British boxer, the "Duke" of the title, who arrives in Virginia City with his hard-drinking manager (J. Pat O'Malley) and puts everyone's backs up with his nasty ways. When the Duke goes too far, beating up and bullying Ponderosa hand, J.D. (Jason Evers), saloon gal, Marge (Randy Stuart), and even his loyal manager, it's time for man mountain Hoss Cartwright to step into the ring and smack some humility into the creep. The final boxing match is a rousing crowd-pleaser, but even in victory, Hoss maintains his humble and kind heart. The towering, 6' 3 1/2" Reed displays a lot of charisma and solid acting chops; apparently he headlined his own series in the late '50s back in the UK, called Captain David Grief. I'd like to see it.

The Dakotas - 1.20 "A Nice Girl from Goliath"
Can't add much to Randall's terrific photo essay of this episode from the previous page - it's a real humdinger. Curvaceous brunette beauty Audrey Dalton (and her luscious neck) prove too much for callow deputy Del (Chad Everett) to handle, and he can't help but be the next sap to fall for the no-good wench. Luckily, seen-it-all reformed gunslinger J.D. (Jack Elam - for me, the star of the show) soon arrives on the scene and reads her like an open book. This series is easily the cream of the WB western crop, at least production quality-wise (Maverick, with its glorious scripting and James Garner persona, edges it out overall); the look of the ramshackle and dingy mining town of Goliath is extremely realistic, and the climactic gunfight is well-staged and exciting. There's a high-gloss sheen to this series which makes it stand out from its WB brethren, and on top of that, it's a very cynical, well-acted series...a real pity that it didn't get a second season.

The Persuaders - 1.24 "Someone's Waiting"
The final episode of this fun, frothy globe-trotting confection finds playboy millionaire crime fighters Lord Brett Sinclair (Roger Moore) and Danny Wilde (Tony Curtis) investigating an attempt to fix the outcome of an upcoming car race, and - more importantly - an imminent threat on Brett's life, somehow tied to his racing past. Lots of nice, rainy London exteriors, plus a brief appearance by Miss Moneypenny herself, Lois Maxwell...but as always, what makes this show special is not its standard adventure show plots, but the magical chemistry between Moore and Curtis, who constantly banter and bicker like a well-oiled comedy duo of old. And needless to say, this lush series, the most expensive produced up to that time by ITC (apparently 100,000 British pounds per episode in 1971 money), positively sparkles on Blu-Ray. John Barry's main theme is one for the ages:


My Three Sons
1.10 "Lonesome George"
1.11 "Spring Will Be a Little Late"
A very enjoyable couple of strong episodes of this long-running '60s sitcom. To escape the clamoring hordes of fans at his hotel, comedian George Gobel is convinced by Bub to stay over at the Douglas house. This culminates in a very funny extended sequence where Gobel and Fred MacMurray wander around the house at night, unaware of each other's presence. "Spring..." is more typical family sitcom fare, but still nicely done, as middle son Robbie (Don Grady, who comes of as an actual believable teen) struggles with confused feelings for his long-time mechanic pal, who has suddenly blossomed from grease monkey to fragrant, feminine beauty (Marta Kristen), and who is, understandably, unwilling to put up with the nickname "Pig" any longer. Kristen would go on to appear two more times later in the series' run, but as different characters.



Thunderbirds
- 1.23 "Attack of the Alligators"
Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons - 1.31 "Attack on Cloudbase"
Rounded out several days' viewing with a pair of Gerry Anderson ITC Supermarionation classics. Not having grown up with these beloved puppet shows, I don't have the strong sense of nostalgia that many fans hold for them...so watching them is more of an academic exercise for me. I can guarantee, though, that had I watched these as a 8-to-12 year-old kid, I would have gobbled them up like M & Ms. Now I enjoy them for their frankly astonishing craftsmanship and detailed sets, props, vehicles and special effects, all lovingly made by hand, with obvious painstaking care and extraordinary skill. Barry Gray's pulse-pounded musical scores really add to the cumulative effect.
The persuaders has always been a fav of mine. I just enjoy watching the two stars obviously having a lot of fun - and it shows.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jeff Flugel

Forum Sponsors

Forum statistics

Threads
343,768
Messages
4,689,413
Members
141,039
Latest member
topreplay