Monday, July 24, 2017

This Week in Television History: July 2017 PART IV

As always, the further we go back in Hollywood history,
the more that fact and legend become intertwined.
It's hard to say where the truth really lies.


July 27, 1922

Norman Milton Lear is born. 
Writer and producer who produced such 1970s sitcoms as All in the Family, Sanford and Son, One Day at a Time, The Jeffersons, Good Times and Maude. As a political activist, he founded the civil liberties advocacy organization People For the American Way in 1981 and has supported First Amendment rights and liberal causes.

July 29, 1957
Jack Paar becomes host of The Tonight Show. 

NBC returned the program to a talk/variety show format once again, with Jack Paar becoming the new solo host of the show. Under Paar, most of the NBC affiliates which had dropped the show during the ill-fated run of America After Dark began airing the show once again. Paar's era began the practice of branding the series after the host, and as such the program, though officially still called The Tonight Show, was marketed as The Jack Paar Show. A combo band conducted by Paar's Army buddy pianist Jose Melis filled commercial breaks and backed musical entertainers. Paar also introduced the idea of having guest hosts; one of these early hosts was Johnny Carson. In the late 1950s, it was one of the first regularly scheduled shows to be videotaped in color.

To quote the Bicentennial Minute, "And that's the way it was".


Stay Tuned


Tony Figueroa

Friday, July 21, 2017

Your Mental Sorbet: Sean Spicer Press Conference (Melissa McCarthy) - SNL



Here is another "Mental Sorbet
that we could use to momentarily forget about those
things that leave a bad taste in our mouths
Published on Feb 5, 2017
White House press secretary Sean Spicer (Melissa McCarthy) and secretary of education nominee Betsy DeVos (Kate McKinnon) take questions from the press (Bobby Moynihan, Kristen Stewart, Cecily Strong, Vanessa Bayer, Alex Moffat, Mikey Day).

Stay Tuned

Tony Figueroa

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Dawn Wells and Jerry Beck: Next on TVC

Actress, author and producer Dawn Wells and animation guru Jerry Beck will join us this weekend on a brand new TV CONFIDENTIAL, airing July 21-24 at the following times and venues:

Share-a-Vision Radio
San Francisco Bay Area
Friday 7/21
7pm ET, 4pm PT
10pm ET, 7pm PT
Click on the Listen Live button at KSAV.org
Use the TuneIn app on your smartphone and type in KSAV
Hear us on the KSAV channel on CX Radio Brazil
Hear us on your cell phone or landline number by dialing 712-432-4235

Indiana Talks
Marion, IN
Saturday 7/22
8pm ET, 5pm PT
Sunday 7/23
10am ET, 7am PT
Click on the player at IndianaTalks.com
or use the TuneIn app on your smartphone and type in Indiana Talks

WON 920 The Apple
Brooklyn, NY
Saturday 7/22
10pm ET, 7pm PT
Streaming at www.920won.caster.fm

KSCO AM-1080 and FM-104.1
San Jose, Santa Cruz and Salinas, CA
KOMY AM-1340
La Selva Beach and Watsonville, CA
Sunday 7/23
9am ET, 6am PT
Also streaming at KSCO.com
or use the TuneIn app on your smartphone and type in KSCO

CROC Radio
Kimberley, British Columbia, Canada
Sunday 7/23
1pm ET, 10am PT
Streaming at CROCRadio.com
or use the TuneIn app on your smartphone and type in CROC

KHMB AM-1710
KHMV-LP 100.9 FM

Half Moon Bay, CA
Sunday 7/23
9pm PT
Monday 7/24
Midnight ET
Click on the Listen Live button at KHMBRadio.com

RadioSlot.com
San Francisco, CA
Monday 7/24
10pm ET, 7pm PT
with replays Tuesday thru Friday at 10pm ET, 7pm PT
Click on the Talk Slot button at RadioSlot.com

PWRNetwork
A member of the Truli Media Group
Ann Arbor, MI ~ Boston, MA ~ Chicago, IL ~ Melrose, FL ~ Los Angeles, CA
Various times throughout the week
on the Entertainment Channel on PWRNetwork.com
and the PWR channel on TuneIn

Known around the world as Mary Ann Summers on Gilligan’s Island, Dawn Wells is also a producer, author, spokesperson, journalist, motivational speaker, teacher, and chairwoman of the Terry Lee Wells Foundation, which focuses on women and children in Northern Nevada, plus she has starred in more than sixty stage productions on and off Broadway, including the national tours of Chapter Two and They’re Playing Our Song, and, most recently, a regional tour of Steel Magnolias. Her most recent book, What Would Mary Ann Do? A Guide to Life, shows readers how Mary Ann would respond to the various changes in culture that face women of all ages today.

Dawn Wells has two new web series out right now — one of which, She’s Still on That Freakin Island, asks the question “What would what happen if MaryAnn were still on Gilligan’s Island today?” while her other series, Life Interrupted, is an award-winning ensemble series in which she plays the wise cracking mother-in-law of Mason Reese. We’ll talk about this, and more, when Dawn Wells joins us in our second hour.

Dawn Wells will be appearing at the Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention in Hunt Valley, MD on Sept. 15-17; The Com Erie Con in Erie, PA, on Sept. 22-24; and the Rainbows For Kids Charity Fundraiser in St. Louis, MO on Nov. 17, 2017. For more information on these and other events on Dawn’s calendar, go to DawnWells.com.

Our first hour will include a conversation with world renowned animation guru Jerry Beck, a man who has spent most of his career proving that adults can enjoy cartoons just as much as kids do. A former studio executive with Nickelodeon Movies and Disney, Jerry has written for The Hollywood Reporter, Variety and other trade publications, plus he is the author of more than fifteen books on animation history, including Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies, I Tawt I Taw a Putty Tat, The 50 Greatest Cartoons, Pink Panther: The Ultimate Visual Guide and The Art of Dreamworks’ Mr. Peabody and Sherman. He has curated cartoons for DVD and Blu-ray compilations and has lent his expertise to dozens of bonus documentaries and commentaries on such, including, most recently, an essay that he wrote for Shout Select’s Blu-ray release of the six Pink Panther movies starring Peter Sellers.

Jerry Beck also runs Cartoon Research, his personal website and blog devoted to animation history, past, present and future. We’ll talk about what first fueled Jerry’s interest in animation, how he essentially created his own genre, his upcoming appearance this weekend at Comic-Con 2017 in San Diego, whether some cartoons are more worthy of discussion than others, and a whole lot more.

TV CONFIDENTIAL: A radio talk show about television
Fri 7pm ET and PT on Share-a-Vision Radio, KSAV.org and CX Radio Brazil
Sat 8pm ET, 5pm PT and Sun 6pm ET, 3pm PT on Indiana Talks (Marion, IN)
Sat 10pm ET, 7pm PT on WON 920 The Apple (Brooklyn, NY)
Sun 9am ET, 6am PT KSCO-AM 1080 (San Jose, Santa Cruz and Salinas, CA)
Sun 9am ET, 6am PT KOMY-AM 1340 (La Selva Beach and Watsonville, CA)
Sun 1pm ET, 10am PT CROC Radio (British Columbia, Canada)
Sun 9pm PT, Mon Mid ET on KHMB-AM and FM (Half Moon Bay, CA)
Mon 10pm ET, 7pm PT on The Radio Slot Network (San Francisco, CA)
Replays various times throughout the week on the Entertainment Channel at PWRNetwork
Tape us now, listen to us later, using DAR.fm/tvconfidential
Also available as a podcast via iTunes, FeedBurner, SoundCloud
and now on your mobile phone via Stitcher.com
Follow us online at www.tvconfidential.net
Follow us now on Twitter: Twitter.com/tvconfidential
Like our Fan Page at www.facebook.com/tvconfidential

If you listen to TV CONFIDENTIAL, and like what you’ve heard, please consider supporting our efforts by becoming a patron of our show through Patreon. It’s easy to do, it does not cost much, plus you can receive some cool rewards (such as coupons that will allow you to download up to six free programs every month from the TV CONFIDENTIAL Archives store). For more information, please visit www.Patreon.com/tvconfidential... and thanks!

Monday, July 17, 2017

This Week in Television History: July 2017 PART III

As always, the further we go back in Hollywood history,
the more that fact and legend become intertwined.
It's hard to say where the truth really lies.


July 22, 1922
Daniel “Dan” Hale Rowan is born. 
He was featured in the television show Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In, where he played straight man to Dick Martin. Born on a carnival train near the small town of Beggs, Oklahoma, under the name of “Daniel Hale David”, Rowan toured with his parents, Oscar and Nellie David, who performed a singing and dancing act with the carnival. He was orphaned at age 11, spent four traumatic years at the McClelland Home in Pueblo, Colorado, then was taken in by a foster family at age 16 and enrolled in Central High School (Pueblo, Colorado)

After graduating from high school, he hitchhiked to Los Angeles, California, in 1940 and found a job in the mailroom at Paramount Pictures; quickly ingratiating himself with studio head Buddy DeSylva, a year later he became Paramount's youngest staff writer.

July 22, 1947
Albert Brooks is born Albert Lawrence Einstein. 

Actor, writer, director son of Thelma Leeds (née Goodman), a singer and actress, and Harry Parke ( Einstein), a radio comedian who performed on Eddie Cantor's radio program and was known as Parkyarkarkus. His brothers are comedic actor Bob Einstein, better known by his stage name "Super Dave Osborne" and Cliff Einstein, a partner and longtime chief creative officer at the Los Angeles ad agency Dailey & Associates and his half-brother was Charles Einstein (1926-2007), a writer who wrote for such shows as Playhouse 90 and Lou Grant. Brooks started his own career in comedy by landing regular roles on variety shows in the late 1960s and gaining popularity on Saturday Night Live in the 1970s. Brooks' first film appearance was Taxi Driver (1976). He began screenwriting and directing in the 1980s, with films including Lost in America (1985), Defending Your Life (1991), The Muse (1999) and Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World (2005). 

To quote the Bicentennial Minute, "And that's the way it was".


Stay Tuned


Tony Figueroa

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Martin Landau

You can have immediate regrets, but if you look at stuff and say, 
'Things happen for a reason', there's a fatalistic thing about it. 
Something will happen that will justify it in some way. 
-Martin Landau
Martin LandauJune 20, 1928 – July 15, 2017
His career started in the 1950s, with early film appearances including a supporting role in Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest (1959). He played regular roles in the television series Mission: Impossible (for which he received several Emmy Award nominations and a Golden Globe Award) and Space: 1999.



Landau received the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture, as well as his first nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, for his role in Tucker: The Man and His Dream (1988); he received his second Oscar nomination for his appearance in Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989). His performance in the supporting role of Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood (1994) earned him an Academy Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award and a Golden Globe Award. He continued to perform in film and TV, and headed the Hollywood branch of the Actors Studio until his death in 2017.

Good Night Mr. Landau

Stay Tuned


Tony Figueroa

Friday, July 14, 2017

Your Mental Sorbet: Quark


Here is another "Mental Sorbet
that we could use to momentarily forget about those
things that leave a bad taste in our mouths
Quark is an American science fiction sitcom starring Richard Benjamin broadcast Friday nights at 8:00-8:30 PM on NBC. The pilot first aired on May 7, 1977, and the series followed as a mid-season replacement in February 1978. The series was cancelled in April 1978. Quark was created by Buck Henry, co-creator of the spy spoof Get Smart.

Stay Tuned

Tony Figueroa

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Richard Anderson and Jimmy Weldon: Next on TVC

Actor and producer Richard Anderson and motivational speaker Jimmy Weldon will join us on an encore edition of TV CONFIDENTIAL, airing July 14-17 at the following times and venues:

Share-a-Vision Radio
San Francisco Bay Area
Friday 7/14
7pm ET, 4pm PT
10pm ET, 7pm PT
Click on the Listen Live button at KSAV.org
Use the TuneIn app on your smartphone and type in KSAV
Hear us on the KSAV channel on CX Radio Brazil
Hear us on your cell phone or landline number by dialing 712-432-4235

Indiana Talks
Marion, IN
Saturday 7/15
8pm ET, 5pm PT
Sunday 7/16
10am ET, 7am PT
Click on the player at IndianaTalks.com
or use the TuneIn app on your smartphone and type in Indiana Talks

WON 920 The Apple
Brooklyn, NY
Saturday 7/15
10pm ET, 7pm PT
Streaming at www.920won.caster.fm

KSCO AM-1080 and FM-104.1
San Jose, Santa Cruz and Salinas, CA
KOMY AM-1340
La Selva Beach and Watsonville, CA
Sunday 7/16
9am ET, 6am PT
Also streaming at KSCO.com
or use the TuneIn app on your smartphone and type in KSCO

CROC Radio
Kimberley, British Columbia, Canada
Sunday 7/16
1pm ET, 10am PT
Streaming at CROCRadio.com
or use the TuneIn app on your smartphone and type in CROC

KHMB AM-1710
KHMV-LP 100.9 FM

Half Moon Bay, CA
Sunday 7/16
9pm PT
Monday 7/17
Midnight ET
Click on the Listen Live button at KHMBRadio.com

RadioSlot.com
San Francisco, CA
Monday 7/17
10pm ET, 7pm PT
with replays Tuesday thru Friday at 10pm ET, 7pm PT
Click on the Talk Slot button at RadioSlot.com

PWRNetwork
Ann Arbor, MI ~ Boston, MA ~ Chicago, IL ~ Melrose, FL ~ Los Angeles, CA
Various times throughout the week
on the Entertainment Channel on PWRNetwork.com
and the PWR channel on TuneIn

Most of you know Richard Anderson as either Oscar Goldman on The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman, Lieutenant Steve Drumm on the final season of Perry Mason, or Dr. Richard Malcolm, the title character in The Night Strangler. But scroll down the list of Richard’s credits, and you’ll find that he not only appeared in some of the most iconic films of all time—including Forbidden Planet, Seven Days in May, John Frankenheimer’s Seconds, Martin Ritt’s The Long, Hot Summer and Stanley Kubrick’s Paths of Glory—but either worked with, got to know or otherwise crossed paths with some of the most iconic names in motion picture history… one of whom, by the way, played a pivotal role very early in Richard’s career.

Richard talks about these and other key moments in his life in Richard Anderson: At Last… A Memoir—a book that goes behind the scenes of his years as a contract player with MGM, while also revealing some interesting things about the actor that you probably never knew before. Our June 2015 conversation with Richard Anderson will air during in our second hour. Co-hosting the hour will be actor, writer and film historian Alan Doshna. A contributor to such publications as Filmfax magazine, and the associate producer of the documentary The Haunted World of Edward D. Wood Jr., Al was the collaborator on Richard Anderson: At Last… A Memoir.

The first hour of this week’s program will include a replay of our June 2016 conversation with Jimmy Weldon. The voice of Yakky Doodle on Yogi Bear, which continues to air on Cartoon Network and Boomerang, Jimmy also hosted one of the very first local children’s TV shows, The Webster Webfoot Show, which originated in Dallas and aired for many years in Los Angeles and in Fresno. Some of you may remember Jimmy from his many appearances on such classic TV shows as Dallas and The Rockford Files.

Jimmy Weldon has also been one of the country’s leading motivational speakers for more than four decades. He shares many of his ideas in his book, Go Get ’Em Tiger, a part autobiographical, part motivational book that shows that the real definition of success is becoming the person you want to be and doing what you really want to do.

TV CONFIDENTIAL: A radio talk show about television
Fri 7pm ET and PT on Share-a-Vision Radio, KSAV.org and CX Radio Brazil
Sat 8pm ET, 5pm PT and Sun 6pm ET, 3pm PT on Indiana Talks (Marion, IN)
Sat 10pm ET, 7pm PT on WON 920 The Apple (Brooklyn, NY)
Sun 9am ET, 6am PT KSCO-AM 1080 (San Jose, Santa Cruz and Salinas, CA)
Sun 9am ET, 6am PT KOMY-AM 1340 (La Selva Beach and Watsonville, CA)
Sun 1pm ET, 10am PT CROC Radio (British Columbia, Canada)
Sun 9pm PT, Mon Mid ET on KHMB-AM and FM (Half Moon Bay, CA)
Mon 10pm ET, 7pm PT on The Radio Slot Network (San Francisco, CA)
Replays various times throughout the week on the Entertainment Channel at PWRNetwork
Tape us now, listen to us later, using DAR.fm/tvconfidential
Also available as a podcast via iTunes, FeedBurner, SoundCloud
and now on your mobile phone via Stitcher.com
Follow us online at www.tvconfidential.net
Follow us now on Twitter: Twitter.com/tvconfidential
Like our Fan Page at www.facebook.com/tvconfidential

If you listen to TV CONFIDENTIAL, and like what you’ve heard, please consider supporting our efforts by becoming a patron of our show through Patreon. It’s easy to do, it does not cost much, plus you can receive some cool rewards (such as coupons that will allow you to download up to six free programs every month from the TV CONFIDENTIAL Archives store). For more information, please visit www.Patreon.com/tvconfidential... and thanks!

Monday, July 10, 2017

This Week in Television History: July 2017 PART II

As always, the further we go back in Hollywood history,
the more that fact and legend become intertwined.
It's hard to say where the truth really lies.


July 12, 1937
William "Bill" Henry Cosby, Jr. the American comedian, actor, author, television producer, and activist is born. 
A veteran stand-up performer, he got his start at various clubs, then landed a vanguard role in the 1960s action show I Spy. He later starred in his own series, The Bill Cosby Show, in 1969. He was one of the major characters on the children's television show The Electric Company for its first two seasons, and created the humorous educational cartoon series Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids, about a group of young friends growing up in the city. Cosby also acted in numerous films. Cosby's net worth is estimated at over $300 million.

July 12, 2002
The first season of Monk began.
Adrian Monk was a brilliant detective for the San Francisco Police Department until his wife, Trudy, was killed by a car bomb in a parking garage, which Monk then believed was intended for him. In a later episode, he discovers the bomb was truly meant for Trudy. He later believes that Trudy's death was part of a larger conspiracy that she had uncovered during her time as a journalist. Trudy's death led Monk to suffer a nervous breakdown. He was then discharged from the force and became a recluse, refusing to leave his house for three and a half years. Until the final episode, Trudy's death was Monk's only unsolved case.
He is finally able to leave the house with the help of his nurseSharona Fleming. The breakthrough allows him to work as a private detective and a consultant for the homicide unit despite limitations rooted in his obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD), which had grown significantly worse after the tragedy, along with several other phobias.

Monk's compulsive habits are numerous, and a number of phobias compound his situation, such as his fear of germs. Monk has 312 fears, some of which are milk, ladybugs, harmonicas, heights, imperfection, claustrophobia, driving, food touching on his plates, messes, and risk. He, however, had a breakthrough from claustrophobia later in the series. The OCD and plethora of phobias inevitably lead to very awkward situations and cause problems for Monk and anyone around him as he investigates cases. These same personal struggles, particularly the OCD, are what aid him in solving cases, such as his sharp memory, specific mindset, and attention to detail. In one episode entitled "Mr. Monk and His Biggest Fan", Marci Maven has compiled a list of all of Adrian's fears. In another episode, he tries to conquer his fears by doing various activities which involved his phobias. For example, he tries drinking milk, climbing a ladder, and putting a ladybug on his hand, but when things are scattered unorganized across a table, he cannot resist the compulsion to arrange them neatly.

July 15, 1964
The Universal Studio Tour opened.
The Tour is the signature attraction at the park, and goes into a working movie studio, with various film and Television sets on the lot. In recent years, guests have sat in multi-car trams for the duration of the ride. The Tour lasts about 45–50 minutes and is led by a live tour guide who can be seen throughout the tram on video screens. It travels through the Front Lot, Backlot and various attractions, passing sets and props from movies along the way.
From the beginning, Universal had offered tours of its studio. After Carl Laemmle opened Universal City on March 14, 1915, he would later invite the general public to see all the action for an admission fee of just $0.05, which also included a lunch box containing chicken inside. There was also a chance to buy fresh produce, since then-rural Universal City was still in part a working farm. This original tour was discontinued in around 1930, due to the advent of sound films coming to Universal.
Ironically, the modern Universal Studio Tour was initially reborn as a way to sell more lunches in the Studio Commissary.  The late 50’s and early 60’s were a difficult time for Hollywood studios. The arrival of television had weakened movie attendance and more and more productions were going on location to save costs. The grand old movie back lots were quickly becoming a thing of the past.  In the mid 1950’s, Universal began letting bus companies drive on to the property (the same bus companies that offered guided tours of the homes of Hollywood stars) as a way to increase revenues. The studio charged the bus companies a small fee and also benefited from the extra lunches they could sell to the tourists in the Studio Commissary. The bus drivers were given a hand-typed script to read that highlighted the studio facilities as well as hyped upcoming Universal releases like Bonzo Goes to College and Monster on the Campus.
When MCA purchased Universal in the late 1950’s, they began to look for a way to revive the old Studio Tour as part of a new image for Universal City Studios. In 1963 legendary movie mogul Lew Wasserman, then president of MCA/Universal, asked Vice President Al Dorskind to look into the feasibility of creating a permanent tour. 

The modern tour was established to include a series of dressing room walk-throughs, peeks at actual production, and later, staged events. This grew over the years into a full-blown theme park

July 16, 1967
Will Ferrell is born in Irvine, California. 

After rising to fame on TV’s Saturday Night Live, Ferrell starred in a string of big-screen comedies, including Old School and Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.
 Ferrell graduated from the University of Southern California in 1990 and went on to join The Groundlings, an improvisational comedy group whose members have included Phil Hartman, Jon Lovitz and Lisa Kudrow. In 1995, Ferrell became a cast member of Saturday Night Live (SNL). Over the course of his seven seasons with the show, he became known for his impersonations of such celebrities as President George W. Bush, game show host Alex Trebek and Inside the Actors Studio host James Lipton. Ferrell also became known for the fictional characters he created, including cowbell player Gene Frenkle of Blue Oyster Cult, cheerleader Craig Buchanan and dense nightclubber Steve Butabi.

To quote the Bicentennial Minute, "And that's the way it was".


Stay Tuned


Tony Figueroa

Friday, July 07, 2017

Your Mental Sorbet: Surviving Gilligan's Island Documentary (2001)

Ed RobertsonDonna Allen-Figueroa and I had a wonderful time chatting with Dawn Wells about her web series Life Interrupted, Still on That Freakin' Island "and the rest" for broadcast later this month on TV Confidential: A radio talk show about television. We also spoke about this TV Special

Here is another "Mental Sorbet
that we could use to momentarily forget about those
things that leave a bad taste in our mouths
Surviving Gilligan's Island Documentary (2001)

Stay Tuned

Tony Figueroa