Sunday, June 29, 2008

Cartoon Time!

Some of the Warner Bros. cartoons of the early-mid 1930's are interesting at best. This one is actually on the good side. It's called "Sittin' On A Backyard Fence" and it's a 1933 Merrie Melodie, produced by Leon Schlesinger shortly after the departure of Hugh Harman and Rudolf Ising as producers. It's only the second Schlesinger-produced MM, after "I've Got To Sing A Torch Song". By this time the song "I Think You're Ducky" became the Merrie Melodies signature tune (replacing "Get Happy"), and this cartoon features a much longer arrangement of same.

Jerry Beck and Will Friedwald, in the "Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies" guidebook published some 20 years ago (really!), took special note of the girl cat in the closing title, saying "So Long Folks" with what was described as "grotesque" mouth action. It's not all that bad, actually, and she does pose quite cutely at the end of her brief recitation. Thanks to Matthew Hunter, one of the Net's flamekeepers of WB cartoons, for posting this one.


It rhymes with apologizer.

But we wish HMcC great luck in this new endeavor.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Joan Rivers Late Show

This is the first several minutes (and some of the closing) of the first episode of the Joan Rivers Late Show that launched the Fox Broadcasting Company in 1986. I'm posting it here because my wife and I had a little discussion minutes ago about Michael Sembello, whether he was more famous for the song "Maniac" or for co-writing the theme song to this talk show with bandleader Mark Hudson (one of the Hudson Brothers of 70's kidvid fame). Only musicians I can pick out of this clip are baritone sax player Beverly Dahlke-Smith (known as "Bev The Tramp" on the show), and tucked almost out of sight in the back row is bass trombone player Lew McCreary.

Prior to her taking this show over, Rivers acted quite frequently as Johnny Carson's guest host, and I believe the two never spoke again when Rivers basically double-crossed the King of Late Night and decided to compete against him. Alas, Joan Rivers and Fox parted ways a few years later, and after a succession of guest hosts (including Howie Mandel), the time slot eventually went to Ross Shafer and eventually Arsenio Hall, who spun off into his own syndicated offering for Paramount. Fox floundered in late night with garbage such as "The Wilton North Report" and "The Chevy Chase Show" and finally gave up on the daypart altogether.

Friday, June 27, 2008

When IMDb Is Most Annoying

Today, when they suck up to corporate sponsors' dollars and frame their site in an ad for some movie that's going to make a billion dollars anyway.

And don't get me started about WENN.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Seen within a few feet of each other in a LBI sign shop:




Monday, June 23, 2008

George Carlin Dead

The news of George Carlin's death yesterday at age 71 solicited mixed reactions from those staying at our beach house. Some of the West Coast types who "got it" were almost in tears, while the older, Eastern folk just focused in on his filth.

Among his many accomplishments in the comedy field were this "Baseball vs. Football" routine - very funny, and 100% devoid of those "seven dirty words" that brought him such notoriety. This clip is from 1990; George had been doing this routine for many years and in fact did it on the very first episode of "Saturday Night Live" in October 1975.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Beachin' It

This next week, I will be ensconced at our family's beach house on Long Beach Island. Though we have ready Internet access, sitting at a computer is a task simply not done at the beach. We'll try to update that No Hitter count, because we can again. But we'll be super active once back from our week at the shore. Bye for now!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Bye, Bye, Willie

BUT, the Mets could have figured out a much more dignified way to axe him. His 3:15 a.m. (ET) dismissal seems like he was being thrown out with the empties at the end of a long, drunken night.

I'm glad Rick Peterson is gone too. When you have no idea that your starting pitchers can actually go 8 or 9 innings and take some pressure off the bullpen once in a while, then it's time to go.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Well, That Lasted Long

Due to the fact that we couldn't make Movable Type do what we needed it to do, we are back using Blogger. We will try to recover the posts that appeared under the Movable Type version of our blog.