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What did you watch this week in classic TV on DVD(or Blu)? (3 Viewers)

BobO'Link

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Episode Commentary
Petticoat Junction
"Kate's Recipe For Hot Rhubarb" (S1E8)

I was never too much into "ruralized" sitcoms like Petticoat Junction, Green Acres, Beverly Hillbillies, Real McCoys, et al--and yet I avidly watched Hee Haw every week. Why? Probably because I'm from Indiana and farm girls just have a certain earthiness that city gals can't duplicate. Give me a sweet girl in Daisy Dukes over a Christian Dior-clad sharpie any day. So consider me contradictory in thought and words as you read this commentary.

I must admit I was always intrigued at the opening credits in which Billie, Bobbie and Betty (all Jo's) are seemingly floating naked in the town's water supply. Apparently health officials decided the water was safe to drink as long as the individuals contaminating it were pretty. In this episode, Billie Joe (Jeannine Riley) has a hot date for the evening, but needs additional arm candy for her date's tagalong buddy. Against Billie Jo's wishes, Kate (Bea Benaderet) insists she insert Bobbie Jo (Pat Woodell) into the foursome. But instead of an evening of hubba bubba, brainy Bobbie Jo would rather stay at home and read something thrilling like Pilgrim's Progress. Kate will hear none of it. "You need to know about boys in case you trip over one", she explains to her doubting daughter, whose blouse is buttoned all the way to her neck as if to emphasize her cocoon-like libidinous innocence. Kate won't be happy until Bobbie Jo's amorous strings have been...uh...plucked.
Kate likens the experience to cooking rhubarb--you might not like it at first, but after a while you get used to it. Thus is written Kate's doctrine on sex.

View attachment 82294 View attachment 82295 View attachment 82296
Bobbie Jo sluts up: But not nearly as well as Billie Jo; Bobbie Jo and Kate discuss Rhubarb since no one else will

Anyway, the girls' dates arrive. The lucky one, Junior (Russell Horton) gets dress-busting Billie Jo, while friend Roger (Jack Bannon) is "stuck" with blind date Bobbie Jo. Roger is a big city boy from Wilke's Corner--the hub of international finance, industry and part-time manufacturer of checker boards. Roger and Bobbie Jo's date is initially a bust since he's more smitten with Billie Jo's bust. Kate's solution is to significantly 'slut up' Bobbie Jo for her follow up date with Roger. It works.

The moral: A large IQ doesn't stand a chance against a large bra size.
Ummm... that's not the town's water tower. It's the railroad water tank at the Petticoat Junction water stop and used to fill the Cannonball's tanks - it's a steam engine. The Shady Rest gets its water from a well, not the tank. The hotel sits about half way between Hooterville and Pixley (~25 miles from each).

Billie Jo was well stacked but I *always* liked Bobbie Jo (Pat Woodell, and especially Lori Saunders) much, much, better! :D
 

Rustifer

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Ummm... that's not the town's water tower. It's the railroad water tank at the Petticoat Junction water stop and used to fill the Cannonball's tanks - it's a steam engine.
Oh, Howie...I know the water tank is used for filling up the steam engine, not as the town's water supply. You should know by now that I play fast and loose with facts so as to forward my inane attempts to be funny. But I do appreciate everyone for holding my feet to the fire when I veer too far off course...At least somebody is reading this stuff.

And by the way, I agree with you--all three girls are worth ogling.
 

Jeff Flugel

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And by the way, I agree with you--all three girls are worth ogling.

Yes, indeedy!

 

Rustifer

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Here's hoping everyone has a happy, safe Thanksgiving.

Some of my long-learned rules:
They say wear expandable waist pants on this holiday to accommodate feasting. Here in Indiana, we don't even bother with pants.

Turkey dark meat (legs and thighs) take much longer to cook than the breast meat. Add a stone to your oven while cooking--when the stone is tender, the legs and thighs should be done.

Always, always, always keep a scented candle burning in the bathroom after dinner. Maybe even continue for a couple days after if oyster stuffing was involved.

Cheers!
 

Mysto

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marv long
View attachment 82351

Here's hoping everyone has a happy, safe Thanksgiving.

Some of my long-learned rules:
They say wear expandable waist pants on this holiday to accommodate feasting. Here in Indiana, we don't even bother with pants.

Turkey dark meat (legs and thighs) take much longer to cook than the breast meat. Add a stone to your oven while cooking--when the stone is tender, the legs and thighs should be done.

Always, always, always keep a scented candle burning in the bathroom after dinner. Maybe even continue for a couple days after if oyster stuffing was involved.

Cheers!
We always throw in uncooked pop corn in the stuffing. When the turkey's ass blows off... it's done!
Have a great and safe holiday - Russ and all my other HTF buddies.
 
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GMBurns

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View attachment 82351

Here's hoping everyone has a happy, safe Thanksgiving.

Some of my long-learned rules:
They say wear expandable waist pants on this holiday to accommodate feasting. Here in Indiana, we don't even bother with pants.

Turkey dark meat (legs and thighs) take much longer to cook than the breast meat. Add a stone to your oven while cooking--when the stone is tender, the legs and thighs should be done.

Always, always, always keep a scented candle burning in the bathroom after dinner. Maybe even continue for a couple days after if oyster stuffing was involved.

Cheers!

Here in Connecticut I have been working from home for the last 8 months so I often wear gym shorts to Zoom business meetings. I will wear pants tomorrow at the dinner table so as not to horrify my family.

I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving, whatever you wear! And be sure to watch some classic tv in between football viewing.
 

BobO'Link

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View attachment 82351

Here's hoping everyone has a happy, safe Thanksgiving.

Some of my long-learned rules:
They say wear expandable waist pants on this holiday to accommodate feasting. Here in Indiana, we don't even bother with pants.

Turkey dark meat (legs and thighs) take much longer to cook than the breast meat. Add a stone to your oven while cooking--when the stone is tender, the legs and thighs should be done.

Always, always, always keep a scented candle burning in the bathroom after dinner. Maybe even continue for a couple days after if oyster stuffing was involved.

Cheers!
I don't have to worry about turkey tenderness as no one in the family likes turkey - unless it's smoked and from the deli. We have a slooooow cooked (250 degrees for 6-8 hrs) shank portion ham - falls apart if you look at it and melts in the mouth.

Oysters - blech. I've had them several different ways and have vowed to never eat them again if I can help it. Nasty things. The only *true* "stuffing" is Southern Dressing (which is not the same as stuffing but I've known people who do put it in a bird) - made with chicken, not turkey (remember... non-smoked turkey's quite nasty - like non-ham, bacon, or sausage pork products).

My wife and I are celebrating alone this year. Her family is not being safe by any stretch of the meaning. My daughter's and her kids are out of town, my son says they're not coming and we can't visit them as my wife and I both work outside the house (me in education). My sister's kids have done some massive traveling (one flying twice and visiting Disney World in the past couple of weeks) so they've said not to come there.

Menu: Possibly a small ham (not sure there yet), chicken and dressing, cranberry salad (smashed cranberries, whipped cream, chopped pecans, crushed pineapple, mini marshmallows), green beans, corn casserole, and macaroni and cheese (good, old fashioned, 3 cheese, baked style). She asked if I wanted candied sweet potatoes - don't know as she doesn't like them and it can be a bit of trouble for just one person. Not sure about dessert - pumpkin pie, chocolate chip pie, or apple pie - just depends on what she feels like making. What ever we have the ultimate goal is to not have lots of leftovers this year.

We're supposed to do a live stream session with my son at "dinner time" so it "feels more like real Thanksgiving."

No football here ever (no one on my side ever watches sports of any type - some of hers do but not at my house as I normally put on holiday movies after dinner - no exceptions). I'll watch some favorite holiday movies or classic TV and my wife'll watch with me (depending on the movie), read, surf the internet, and/or talk to a favorite cousin on the phone for hours...

Hope all y'all have a great one!
 
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JamesSmith

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Well, with the reboot of Animaniacs taking off, I've started watching an unwatched DVD of Tiny Toons. It's a kindler, gentler version of Animaniacs. It has its moments.
--jthree
 

Jeff Flugel

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Happy Thanksgiving, my fellow American HTFers (and a good plain old Thursday to all my other buddies from up in the Great White North, across the pond and elsewhere)!

Since Thanksgiving isn't a thing here in Japan, I won't be doing much in the festive manner. In years past, I've cooked a turkey (Butterball from Costco here) and some of the traditional fixings a few times, but it's generally not worth the trouble, as it's usually just me, my wife and son...and it certainly will be so in this year of the pandemic. Gotten out of the turkey day habit, really, though it was a big deal for my family back when I was growing up. We usually would have two big meals, one on Thanksgiving Day with my mom's side of the family, and another with my dad's parents on the Friday. Great, warm memories, but now that my grandparents have all passed on, and living overseas, the holiday just doesn't have the zing that it used to.



While Thanksgiving, being a very North American holiday, hasn't translated over here, the Japanese love Christmas, and celebrate it in their own inimitable way. There is a slightly strange and surreal custom over here of everyone getting Kentucky Fried Chicken for dinner on Christmas Day. Seriously, the KFCs here don't allow any walk-in customers for several days around Christmas, it's reservation-only, and people line up to get their big bucket o' fried bird. It apparently became a thing in the '80s and still persists to this day.

Anyway, everyone have a safe and fun holiday, whether you're chowing down on turkey, chicken, ham or even (*shudder*) oyster stuffing. Earlier this year I watched a lovely episode from S1 of My Three Sons centered around Thanksgiving ("Chip's Harvest"). Any other special turkey day classic TV episodes that stand out to you folks?

 
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ClassicTVMan1981X

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Well, with the reboot of Animaniacs taking off, I've started watching an unwatched DVD of Tiny Toons. It's a kindler, gentler version of Animaniacs. It has its moments.
--jthree
To speak further of the 2020 reboot of Animaniacs, it also has Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters in it. This makes me want to dig out my H-B DVDs!

~Ben
 

BobO'Link

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Anyway, everyone have a safe and fun holiday, whether you're chowing down on turkey, chicken, ham or even (shudder) oyster stuffing. Earlier this year I watched a lovely episode from S1 of My Three Sons centered around Thanksgiving ("Chip's Harvest"). Any other special turkey day classic TV episodes that stand out to you folks?
KFC for Christmas dinner just sounds odd... although we've had relatives bring in a bucket when we've done Pot-Luck meals on Thanksgiving. No thanks... I'd rather have my wife's fried chicken (with white gravy, mashed potatoes, and home made biscuits).

One of my all-time favorite holiday TV episodes is S4E11 of The Bob Newhart Show - "Over the River and Through the Woods." With Emily out of town, Bob spends Thanksgiving with Jerry and Mr Carlin watching a football game. They proceed to get drunk and try to order Moo Goo Gai Pan from a Chinese restaurant for dinner.

And there's the classic "Turkey's Away", the S1E7 episode of WKRP.

Les Nessman: I'm here with hundreds of people who have gathered to witness what has been described as perhaps the greatest turkey event in Thanksgiving Day history. All we know for sure is that in a very few moments there are going to be a lot of happy people out here. Now the crowd is...uh... curious but well behaved. And I think I hear something now. Uh... The crowd is moving out into the parking area. And... oh yes! I can see it now. It's a... it's a... helicopter and it's coming this way!

Andy Travis: A helicopter?

Les Nessman: It's flying something behind it and I can't quite make it out. It's a large banner and it says H a p p y... T h a n k s... giving... from W... K... R... P! What a sight, ladies and gentlemen. What a sight. The 'copter seems to circling the parking area now. I guess it's looking for a place to land. No! Something just came out of the back of a helicopter. It's a dark object, perhaps a skydiver plummeting to the earth from only two thousand feet in the air... There's a third... No parachutes yet... Those can't be skydivers. I can't tell just yet what they are but... Oh my God! They're turkeys! Oh no! Johnny can you get this? Oh, they're crashing to the earth right in front of our eyes! One just went through the windshield of a parked car! This is terrible! Everyone's running around pushing each other. Oh my goodness! Oh, the humanity! People are running about. The turkeys are hitting the ground like sacks of wet cement! Folks, I don't know how much longer... The crowd is running for their lives. I think I'm going to step inside. I can't stand here and watch this anymore. No, I can't go in there. Children are searching for their mothers and oh, not since the Hindenburg tragedy has there been anything like this. I don't know how much longer I can hold my position here, Johnny. The crowd...

Dr. Johnny Fever: Les? Les? Les, are you there? Les isn't there. Thanks for that on-the-spot report, Les. For those of you who've just tuned in, the Pinedale Shopping Mall has just been bombed with live turkeys. Film at eleven.

Later, Mr. Carlson says: " As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly!"

Great stuff!
 

GMBurns

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One of the most memorable Thanksgiving shows is the season 5 episode of Cheers where the gang gathers at Carla's house for a dinner that turns into a food fight. We almost get to see Vera, Norm's longsuffering wife.

I suspect our Thanksgiving dinner will be much more civil. ;)
 

Flashgear

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Bewitched season 4, ep. 12, Thanksgiving To Remember (Nov. 23, 1967)...A befuddled Aunt Clara (Marion Lorne) drops in, literally via the chimney, into the Stephens household on Thanksgiving to celebrate the holiday dinner with Samantha (Elizabeth Montgomery, natch.), Darrin (Dick York) and little Tabitha (Erin Murphy)...Aunt Clara, as she is wont to do with the onset of her sweet natured senility, reminisces about the original Pilgrim Thanksgiving as though she herself was there (she was!), and accidentally transports the family back in time to 1620...including nosy neighbor Mrs. Kravitz who had just popped in to borrow some sugar!

My screen caps from the Mill Creek complete series set...
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They've been in the past for about 5 minutes when Darrin begins to provoke suspicion with his strange manner...he tries to seat his women at the dining table with the colony men... including John Alden (Richard Bull), Miles Standish (Peter Canon), and an overbearing newly arrived colonist Phineas (Jacques Aubuchon), who having condemned the Plymouth colonists habit of merely hanging a witch, reminds them that a good burning at the stake is how they handle it in the old country...Darrin has already startled Phineas with his strange greeting of "Hi, everything O.K.?"...Samantha, Clara, Tabitha and Mrs. Kravitz are sent to labor roasting the turkeys and grinding the maize for bread as Darrin and the men pig out on the first Thanksgiving feast...
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A confused Mrs. Kravitz, grinding the maize says "I don't like this dream. It's too hard!"
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After Phineas witnesses Darrin striking one of his wooden matches to start a fire, he accuses Darrin loudly of being a witch! The trial commences immediately...the locals really dig this kind of thing apparently...
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Phineas informs Darrin that if he denies being a witch, he's guilty because that's what a witch would say, naturally...and if he confesses, same result with a hanging guaranteed...unless Phineas can convince the locals to up the ante with a good ol' burning at the stake....
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Under questioning, Darrin convicts himself by striking a second match for all to see! His explanation that the sulfurous chemicals on the magical match head burst into flame by friction falls on deaf ears...Phineas declares it to be the devil's own brimstone...
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As further evidence of Darrin's guilt, Phineas recounts the evil "conjuring" incantation by which Darrin first bewitched him...Phineas intones gravely..."Hi, everything O.K.?"...ha, ha...
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The used wooden match, having been struck repeatedly by the tribunal without bursting into flame, nevertheless now bursts into flame as Phineas strikes it...Samantha's twitching nose being involved in this startling development, Phineas himself is now accused of being a witch!
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Samantha rises to the defense of her husband, delivering an impassioned speech on justice with reason and not superstition, the tribunal is moved to acquit Darrin...just then, repudiating the notion that witches don't exist, Aunt Clara suddenly remembers the spell that will return them home to 1967...and poof, they all disappear in a puff of smoke! The Plymouth colonists are left to ponder upon their folly and resolve to whip up a full blown witch hunting hysteria in about 70 years or so...ha, ha...
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Having returned to the Stephens' living room, Mrs. Kravitz is thrilled to finally have proof of Sam's witchcraft with which to show her husband Abner...she rushes home in her Pilgrim clothes, crying Abner!, Abner!....that guy's life must be hell...
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Sam casts her magic and just as she reaches her door, slips Mrs. Kravitz back into her original dress...
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And the Stephens family can now sit down to a fine Thanksgiving dinner, prepared lovingly and entirely without any magic being involved...Endora and Uncle Arthur are absent, presumably maintaining their own Covid cohorts, ha...
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Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends! Up here in Bizarro world America (Canada), we had our own Thanksgiving on October 12th! We're weird that way!
 
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Jack P

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I'm going to likely be more limited in what I watch this season compared to years past, mostly because of the whole dreary nature of what this year has been like. Still, for Thanksgiving proper I fit in room for this.

Plymouth Adventure (1952)
-I always watch this film classic about the Mayflower sailing with Spencer Tracy. Yes, it's overly romanticized, but it's unapologetic tone and glorious Miklos Rozsa score make it a must-view for me every year.

Daniel Boone, S2-"Thanksgiving Story"
-John McIntire appears again as Rebecca's Irish blarney-talking father.

Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (1973)
-An original broadcast recording from 1973 with Dolly Madison and Coke spots was on-line a year ago and I managed to grab it. Interestingly, they didn't use the familiar "CBS Special Presentation" open but a different "CBS Family Presentation" opening.
 

Jeff Flugel

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Thanks, guys, for chiming in with some other Thanksgiving classic TV faves!

Randall, thanks for posting the photo essay of that Bewitched episode...it looks like a really fun one (and can be found on Daily Motion here.)

I cracked up just reading the caption of Mrs. Kravitz grinding corn, and could totally picture her screechy voice ("I don't like this dream. It's too hard.") Good stuff!
 
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Jeff Flugel

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Hey everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and are enjoying your turkey leftovers. :) Just wanted to pop in and note that we've recently passed 5,000 posts in this here thread! That's 245 pages and 4,900+ posts since January 2018...not too shabby!

So I'd like to take this opportunity to give thanks to all of my fellow classic TV fan peeps who post here on a regular (and irregular) basis, and help keep the love and appreciation for these old shows alive. It's always a treat to come here and see what you fine people have been watching. Here's to the next 5,000 posts!
 

Rustifer

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Episode Commentary
The Big Valley
"Tunnel of Gold" (S1E29)

The town of Stockton is growing leaps and bounds. The citizens realize they need a centralized resource for their Cheez-Its, e-cigs, condoms, lotto tickets and copies of the National Enquirer. In short, they need a convenience mart, more familiarly known as the General Store. And so enters the husband and wife team of Bert and Elaine Jason (Warren Stevens, Jeanne Cooper), friends of the town's royalty--Victoria Barkley (Barbara Stanwyck)--to open up a new mercantile. Herein lies the drama that only a general store can bring to your big screen TV.

Bert and Elaine's store is conveniently located next to the train depot. Besides the irritating odor and clatter of steam engines roaring by, it's also the logical depository for gold shipments. This fact does not escape the notice of master criminal Frank Colder (Malachi Throne)--especially after learning the Barkleys are expecting a shipment of bullion for their payroll. Apparently Victoria likes to pay her ranch hands in gold bars as opposed to convenient folding money.

Since Bert and Elaine are just starting out, Victoria wants to guarantee a credit line for them to open the store. Nick (Peter Breck) won't hear of it since he recognizes Bert having a somewhat shady past being in cahoots with Frank Colder--who, speaking of which, stops into the store with a laundry list that includes picks, shovels and TNT. Gee, nothing too suspicious about that. Oh, and a pack of Chicklets. Crooks need fresh breath, too.

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Elaine and Audra try out bondage; Frank salutes a gold shipment passing by; Victoria discovers a stink bug on her lamp shade

In no time, Frank--who dresses like a local schoolmaster--and his gang take over the store and hold poor Bert and Elaine as prisoners. It's time for them to hack their way into the neighboring depot to snatch the gold shipment. The gang takes occasional breaks, feverishly working scratch-off lottery tickets and binging on Slim Jims. The question becomes whether Bert has reformed or is he in on the heist with his old partner Frank Colder? Frank wants Bert to leave his wife, take his share of the loot and go chase younger women--even though Elaine is certainly a MILF worth noting. Meanwhile, Audra (Linda Evans) wanders into the store with hopes of purchasing a decent pushup bra when she accidently uncovers the tunneling scheme. She, too, becomes a prisoner. Holding a Barkley in captivity is like chewing aluminum foil--not a good idea.

In the end, Bert acquires a conscience and foils the robbery attempt. Just in the nick of time, for the excavating has punctured a hole in the town's gas line and is about to explode the place back to the stone ages.

The moral: When boring for stolen gold, be sure to contact your local Gas & Power Company to provide safe markings for digging.
 

Rustifer

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Hey everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and are enjoying your turkey leftovers.
Turkey sandwiches, turkey soup, turkey alfredo, creamed turkey on toast, turkey omelets, turkey in aspic and a remarkable number of Tums. I never want to see turkey again.

Just wanted to pop in and note that we've recently passed 5,000 posts in this here thread! That's 245 pages and 4,900+ posts since January 2018...not too shabby!
As they say, idle hands are the devil's playground. I'm glad we're all so demonically interested in classic TV.
 

Jeff Flugel

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Rawhide – 3.22 “Incident in the Middle of Nowhere”
Gil and Rowdy are looking for water for the herd and a pass through a range of mountains when they come across a surreal sight: an older man (Cecil Kellaway) dressed in a tuxedo, sipping champagne and watching a troupe of ballerinas prance about on a makeshift wooden stage in the middle of nowhere. The man is named McKay and, while friendly enough, is a cagey customer who carefully guards the gold-panning operation he runs with a tribe of Indians. When McKay’s Indian pals prohibit them from entering the mountains, Gil and Rowdy hire a guide (Elisha Cook, Jr.) from the nearby town to find another route, but a pair of crooks and a woman (Fay Spain) claiming to be looking for her lost father complicate matters.

The recent Goldsmith Odyssey podcast on this, the one Rawhide episode that composer Jerry Goldsmith scored, spurred me on to give it a spin. A typically fine, well-written and beautifully-shot show, with a good supporting cast, which also includes James Griffith and good old X. Brands (though Elisha Cook, Jr.’s part is surprisingly rather throwaway). Judging from the various cheescake photos online, Ms. Spain was justifiably proud of her figure. (I chuckled at a line near the end of the episode, when McKay gently chides Favor for falling for "a big pair of eyes...and other things.")

Really am warming up to this show, now that I'm hip to its particular vibe. At first, it kind of took me aback, how...well, simple Eastwood's Rowdy Yates is depicted. What really holds everything together is the commanding performance of Eric Fleming, plus the realism of the scenarios and scripting. Great series.

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Doctor Who – 2.9 “The Time Meddler”
The TARDIS lands in Northumbria in the 1066, just prior to a Viking invasion. And for the first time in the series’ history, we meet another Time Lord, in this case, the Meddling Monk (played by Carry On… stalwart Peter Butterworth). The Monk sports a wristwatch under his cassock and has a chamber in the monastery filled with artifacts from Earth’s past and future. Once The Doctor (William Hartnell) gets wind of the Monk’s plan to blow the Viking fleet away with a neutron bomb, altering the course of human history, he sets out to stop him, along with his companions Vicki (Maureen O’Brien) and Stephen (Peter Purves). The cliffhanger to episode 3 must have blown fans’ minds way back in 1965, as Vicki and Steven open the door to a sarcophagus in the monastery and accidentally enter the Monk’s very own TARDIS. A good historical romp with a sci-fi twist, with all four parts zipping along nicely. Hartnell is on top form here, clearly enjoying the verbal sparring matches with veteran comic actor Butterworth.

I Love Lucy – 1.8 “Men Are Messy”
Lucy tires of keeping their apartment spotlessly clean when all Ricky does is slob it up when he gets home, so she divides their place into “his” and “her” sides. She carries the gag too far, though, when, after Ricky tells her to tidy up the place because a photographer profiling him for a magazine is coming by later that evening, Lucy and Ethel convert the apartment into a trash dump, complete with Lucy dressed up like some sort of bumpkin Ronald McDonald. But the joke’s on her when the story appears not in some obscure music rag as she expected, but in Look magazine – and she’s made the cover. Another very funny first season episode.

Campion – 1.4 “Death of a Ghost” Parts 1 and 2
Belle Lacfadio (Jean Anderson), the widow of a famous painter, invites old friend and gentleman sleuth Albert Campion (Peter Davison) to the unveiling of one of her husband’s previously-unseen paintings. When one of the guests is murdered, and Belle's granddaughter is considered the prime suspect by Inspector Oates (Andrew Burt), Campion and his ex-con manservant, Lugg (Brian Glover), seek the true culprit among the Bohemian art set, with the clever murderer eventually targeting Campion himself.

The BBC adapted eight early novels by Golden Age detective novelist Margery Allingham (one of the Grande Dames of the genre, along with Agatha Christie) across two series from 1989 to 1990, giving the production their customary lush period detail and polish. Allingham’s novels are strong on subtle shadings of emotional mood, intricate social observation and detailed characterization, which are not always easy to pull off in televised form...but the series makes a good stab at it, helped by the spot-on casting of Davison and Glover in the lead roles. Campion was pitted against ITV’s Poirot (with David Suchet) in the ratings, and suffered accordingly. It also didn’t help that the producers chose to adapt several of Allingham’s earliest novels, which tended more toward Bulldog Drummond-style thrillers than the proper whodunnits which became her forte. A third season was commissioned but cancelled after the second season underperformed, which is a real shame, as some of Allingham’s best works were up next in the production queue, including The Fashion in Shrouds, Traitor’s Purse, Coroner’s Pidgin and More Work for the Undertaker.



Bewitched – 4.12 “Samantha’s Thanksgiving to Remember”
No need to go into much detail about this special seasonal episode, as Randall’s great post upthread covered it perfectly. As I only own the first two seasons of this show on DVD, I had to seek this one out online, and found a complete copy on Daily Motion. A fun episode with a neat concept, as Aunt Clara accidentally transports herself, the Stephens family and nosy neighbor Mrs. Kravitz (the Mark II version, Sandra Gould) back to 1620 to spend Thanksgiving with the Pilgrims. While there, a befuddled Darrin strikes a match and is accused of witchcraft, leaving Sam to save his bacon with an impassioned speech and, failing that, a little nose twitch. I get a kick out of dotty old Aunt Clara, and of course lovely Elizabeth Montgomery is always welcome on my TV.

David Nixon’s Magic Box – 3.2 “September 20, 1971”
More old-fashioned British variety show goodness, with magician and all-around entertainer David Nixon the ringmaster. Ditzy blond glamour girl and comedienne Aimi MacDonald guest stars, showing off her curves in some sparkly, form-fitting costumes. Marv’s buddy William O. Wallace, a.k.a. Ali Bongo, was the magic consultant and assistant on this show, and shows up in several skits here, under the stage name “Alistair.” Par for the course, we have to sit through an excruciating musical number smack dab in the middle of far more palatable magic, stand-up and ventriloquist acts, but the affable Nixon keeps things entertaining.

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Gidget – 1.4 “Daddy Come Home”
Gidget drags her dad (Don Porter) to the beach, but is nonplussed when, instead of watching her surf, he chats up a nearby redhead (Mr. Novak’s Marian Collier, looking fine). And when he takes the woman on a date and stays out real late, Gidget has a meltdown and ends up calling the police. Harvey Korman has a funny bit as a patrolman who is tasked with breaking up dad’s date and ushering him home to “mommy.” What at first seems the usual sitcom overreaction on Gidget’s part is given a touching spin when she confesses her deep-rooted fears about anything bad happening (like a car accident) to take her father, and only remaining parent, away from her. This is a fun show, and the colors really pop on the Mill Creek DVD set. (Below pic is I believe courtesy of an earlier post by Randall.)



Leave It to Beaver – 1.27 “Tenting Tonight”
Ward thinks Wally and the Beav need to spend less time cooped up in a movie theater on Saturdays and more time outdoors, so he plans to take them on a camping trip. However, a crisis at work beckons and Ward is forced to cancel the trip, much to his, and the boys, disappointment. Wally and Beaver vow to make the best of it and set up their tent behind the family garage. All goes well until a heavy rain sets in...

A nice episode, this, though I was a bit shocked at just how freakin' young everyone looked – especially Eddie Haskell, who's a mere slip of a skinny little punk here. Unfortunately, I have the notorious older Universal DVD “flipper” version of S1 (kindly gifted to me by a friend) and the dang episode froze up halfway through! Thankfully, Uncle Earl’s Classic TV Channel came to the rescue, with a good-looking copy of the complete episode available online, and I was able to finish watching.

The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet
5.2 “Captain Salty and the Submarine”
6.10 “Tutti Frutti Ice Cream”
This show is such a delight. Not only is its gentle comedy a balm in these trying times, the storylines are consistently unique and go in clever and unexpected directions. In “Captain Salty…,” Ozzie becomes interested in the toy submarine offered by the sponsor of a local kid’s show, much to the amusement of his family. Oz dutifully gulps down a sixpack of root beer and sends in the bottle caps to get a submarine (along with many other dads, apparently, including the postman), and ends up accidentally winning a bicycle in a contest. The catch: he has to appear live on the Captain Salty show to accept the gift.

In ”Tutti Frutti...,” a newspaper article causes Ozzie to wax nostalgic about eating tutti frutti ice cream as a kid. This leads him to have a dream set in an ice cream parlor, in which he and the family (accompanied by the Four Preps) sing versions of “Tutti Frutti” and “Goody Goody,” and Harriet, still slim and agile, dances the Charleston. Obsessed with his cravings, Ozzie wakes up neighbor Darby (Parley Baer, on great form), and the two embark on a quest to track down some of the elusive titular dessert. Joseph Kearns, the original Mr. Wilson on Dennis the Menace, shows up as a helpful drug store owner.

Ozzie seems such an easygoing, unassuming type that it always amazes me that he was pretty much a one-man show who produced, directed and co-wrote every episode of the series himself over 14 long seasons. Oh, I know he had help (including heavy involvement from his brother, Don), but it’s clear that the guy was a dynamo of talent. He obviously knew his family members’ strengths very well, and doesn’t hog all of the best lines for himself. Everyone here gets their fair share of zingers. This show has been tarred with the “too perfect, too square '50s sitcom” brush over the years, but I find it utterly charming and reliably funny, with plots often both surreal and relatable.

I watched both of these episodes on Shout! Factory's "Best of" DVD set. The transfers looked good but were the 22-minute syndicated versions, so after viewing them in full, I tracked down the scenes cut from each episode on YouTube. The one snipped from "Captain Salty..." was a nice little scene at the breakfast table showing Harriet, David and Ricky teasing Ozzie about the bicycle he won, and the one for "Tutti Frutti," ironically, was the part where the Nelson family sing that song. It's a pity that Shout! only put out the shortened syndicated versions on the DVD set, but it's not that surprising, as the cut versions boast superior picture quality. I'm nonetheless grateful for those who uploaded the complete versions (with vintage commercials) online.
 
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