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Thursday, October 5, 2006 - 7:33am : Billy Ingram
The latest episode of the pop culture podcast "Just My Show" includes two interviews with classic TV stars - Tony Dow (Wally Cleaver on "Leave it to Beaver") and Alan Young (Wilbur Post on "Mister Ed"). Check it out at: justmyshow.com.


Wednesday, October 4, 2006 - 12:43pm : Billy Ingram
About those Movie of the Week telecasts being available on DVD, Bob Huggins tells us:
In response to the inquiry from the reader about ABC Movies of the Week (and "movies of the week" from the other networks), the answer is two-fold:
Some of the higher profile "movies of the week" like "Brian's Song," "Helter Skelter," "Trilogy of Terror," etc., etc. have received full-fledged studio DVD releases. But a number of "run-of-the-mill" TV movies have, apparently, slipped into public domain status and are available from companies releasing public domain material. One such company is Mill Creek Entertainment, a company that has offered box sets of 50 movies. Their collection titled "All Stars Classics," while containing a few theatrical films, contains mostly made-for-TV movies and, to my knowledge, is the largest single collection of made- for-TV movies. Many of these same movies can also be found on inexpensive dollar store DVDs . . . so don't expect any kind of restoration work on these and, to say the least, visual quality is all over the map. Here are the contents of the Mill Creek collection, copied directly from their web site(http://www.millcreekent.com/):

1. All the Kind Strangers
2. Anatomy of an Illness
3. Ballad of Andy Crocker, The
4. Betrayal
5. Black Brigade
6. Born to be Sold
7. Borrowers, The
8. Brass Ring, The
9. Catholics
10. Children of the Night
11. Christmas Without Snow, A
12. Coach of the Year
13. Congratulations, It's A Boy!
14. Cry of the Innocent
15. Death of Richie, The
16. Disappearance of Flight 412, The
17. Divorce Hers
18. Divorce His
19. Evel Knievel
20. Firehouse
21. Get Christie Love!
22. Good Against Evil
23. Gun and the Pulpit, The
24. Hanged Man, The
25. How Awful About Alan
26. Hustling
27. Incident on a Dark Street
28. Intimate Agony
29. James Dean
30. Katherine
31. Last of the Belles, The
32. Love is Forever
33. Maybe I'll Come Home in the Spring
34. Moon of the Wolf
35. Murder Once Removed
36. New Adventures of Heidi, The
37. Out
38. Panic in Echo Park
39. Pride of Jesse Hallum, The
40. Real American Hero, A
41. Rehearsal for Murder
42. Shell Game
43. Snowbeast
44. Strangers in 7A, The
45. Stunts
46. Tattered Web, A
47. They Call it Murder
48. To All My Friends on Shore
49. Voyage of the Yes, The
50. Wake Me When the War is Over

Mr. Huggins also points us to superseventies.com/made-for-tv_movies.html for a list of some of the better known TV movies available from Amazon. Thanks, Bob!


Monday, October 2, 2006 - 1:23pm : Billy Ingram
Clarence "Ducky" NashIn addition to celebrating the great Daws Butler, I ran across this commercial for Donald Duck Orange Juice starring the original voice of Donald himself, Clarence "Ducky" Nash.

DD OJ was new to the market when this commercial aired, I'm guessing mid-seventies. I'm also guessing that this actually is Nash, I've never seen a photo of the guy - he passed away in 1985 and was the voice of Donald Duck to the end.


Monday, October 2, 2006 - 11:35am : Billy Ingram
Duane D. Brodnick asks the question I get most on TVparty - "I'd like to know if there's any way I can find out whether those popular ABC Movies of the Week will ever be released on DVDs? I was a fan of them growing and there are a number of movies I'd like to add to my collection."

Wish I had a good answer for him!


Monday, October 2, 2006 - 11:31am : Billy Ingram
I get a lot of mail and I'll be sharing. For instance, TNBeth47 writes: "I grew up in the 50's in Audubon, right across the bridge from Philly. I remember spreading this green oilcloth on the TV screen and a show would come on, a cartoon, and we would have to draw a door to help them escape, or a window. Everybody says I am nuts... got an ideas?"

I can't imagine what she's talking about. An interactive cartoon from the 1950s? No wonder her friends think she's nuts. It's a bit far-fetched. Except it's real - Winky-Dink and You. Read about it and watch it here. The series was seen, not just in Philly, but all over the USA.



Monday, October 2, 2006 - 11:25am : Billy Ingram
If you're interested, you can catch me on BRAVO this evening between 4:30 - 6:30pm EST on 100 Funniest Movies. People seemed to like the show, you might as well. What else would you be doing, it's not like you have to work or anything, right?



Monday, October 2, 2006 - 11:15am : Billy Ingram
Marc Connery tells us more about the Carol Channing / Pearl Bailey clip below: "Type this into your Netflix search and you will find the TV program where they sing together - Carol Channing and Pearl Bailey On Broadway."

I did, both Blockbuster and Netflix has it and you can buy it here!

Speaking of Broadway legends, here's a rare clip with the immortal Ethel Merman belting her lungs out for Texaco. She's really pushing the whole 'trust your car to the man who wears the star' point - but I somehow doubt Ms. Merman was much of a driver. Living in New York as she did, I'll bet bet she traveled by limo most of the time.

Ethel Merman on televisionTelevision wasn't particularly kind to Ms. Merman - heck, the movies weren't much better - she was just too big for the small screen, I suspect. Is that why they kept obscuring her face with bright lights in this commercial? She deserved more than the odd guest appearance and commercials like this.


Saturday, September 30, 2006 - 8:45am : Billy Ingram
If you're an early riser, as I am, I'll be interviewed on WFDU Sunday morning at 8:00am. That's in 89.1 in Alpine, NJ but you can listen online at: wfdu.fm. Host James Rana and I will be talking aout the classic Halloween TV specials. Don't miss it!


Sunday, September 24, 2006 - 5:55am
: Billy Ingram

Netflix vs Blockbuster.com
For a couple of years now, I've subscribed to both Blockbuster's DVD home delivery service and Netflix, both with the 3 at-a-time (unlimited) plans, both charging $17.99 a month.

Which is better? I seem to get more films in the mail from Netflix; they have a delivery center in my city whereas Blockbuster goes to a center 150 miles away. Netflix has a larger catalog of TV shows & movies and better availability as well - popular current releases & cult faves that may have a long wait on Blockbuster come up more readily available on Netflix, at least along my preferences.

However, Blockbuster gets the edge by allowing you to bring in your Blockbuster.com DVDs and exchange them for in-store movies. In this way, I got 6 movies over one weekend with 3 more waiting in my mailbox on Friday (that meant I got 9 rentals that week). Couple that with the 2 free in-store coupons you get every month and it's a deal tough to beat. I see now Blockbuster is advertising 4 free in-store rentals a month but I still only get 2.

I've never much cared for Blockbuster Video stores tho - they're otherwise too expensive at $4.00 a rental. I have access to an independent store with lower prices and a much better selection. I'm more inclined to support the new guy, Netflix - but the most rentals I get with my plan is around 24 a month vs a total of 38 possible rentals for the same period from Blockbuster.

Better selection and availab


Tuesday, September 19, 2006 - 3:55pm
: Billy Ingram

Here's a wonderful few minutes with two television masters - Merv Griffin and George Burns. Burns loved to sing old songs from his vaudeville years, tunes that had long fallen out of favor with the public. He even released an album of these obscure ditties in the mid-seventies but it didn't exactly inspire a rush on the record stores.

This clip reminds is a reminder of just how great television could be in the daytime during the 1970s; shows like Merv, Dinah and The Mike Douglas Show offered the opportunity to watch legendary performers in a slightly more relaxed atmosphere. This clip in particular is a glimpse into what it must have been like when George Burns rehearsed.

Merv has released a Best-of DVD set and I wish there were twenty more - we're still waiting for a box set of the Mike Douglas shows. Unlike many daytime productions from 30 years ago, these programs still exist so it's something to look forward to one day.



Thursday, September 14, 2006 - 8:32am : Billy Ingram
Here's some rare video clip for you - the theme from The Saturday Superstar Movie, an ABC animated movie-of-the-week that ran from 1972-74, obviously, on Saturday mornings.
Here are the bumpers that played between commercials.


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