Book Review: It’s Saturday Morning!

It’s hard to believe that there was a time in my life when Saturday mornings weren’t made for sleeping...but rather, getting up “at the crack of ice” (as my pal Maureen likes to call it) and blissing out in front of the set to watch the endless parade of TV animation.  Those fondly-remembered “days of… Continue reading Book Review: It’s Saturday Morning!

Classic Movies · Television

“Ah ah ah ah…don’t touch that dial!”

After six years of drawing the comic strip Dumb Dora (about a brunette who “wasn’t as dumb as she looked”), Murat Bernard “Chic” Young handed it off to artist Paul Fung once Chic decided to embark on a new venture.  That new strip would soon become one of the most popular newspaper comics of all… Continue reading “Ah ah ah ah…don’t touch that dial!”


What a girl, what a whirl, what a life

Though she had firmly established herself in motion pictures as America’s favorite man-chaser, it could be argued that comedienne Joan Davis really achieved major fame in radio.  From 1941 to 1943 she was a regular on Rudy Vallee’s popular Sealtest variety show and when Vallee went into the Coast Guard to “do his bit” for… Continue reading What a girl, what a whirl, what a life


“…just to have a laugh and sing a song…”

On December 3rd last year, the CBS Television Network paid fitting homage to the woman whose 1967-78 variety hour not only proved to be the gold standard of that type of series, but the last truly great example of the genre as well.  In one of the extras on The Carol Burnett 50th Anniversary Special—which… Continue reading “…just to have a laugh and sing a song…”


Adventures in Blu-ray: Television’s Lost Classics, Volume 1

I recently celebrated a birthday a little over a week ago, and my sister Kat gifted me with a copy of David Bianculli’s The Platinum Age of Television, a book that posits that while the 1950s may have been the medium’s “Golden Age,” the offerings on what the late Harlan Ellison sardonically called “the glass… Continue reading Adventures in Blu-ray: Television’s Lost Classics, Volume 1


“Well, Dick…it’s time to say goodnight.”

In correspondence that Dan Rowan composed to author John D. MacDonald in 1972, the longtime Laugh-In co-host/straight man observed: “Bland and nice have set in and we could be the Nelson family doing a variety show.  Why is this?  Maybe because we have run out of things to say.”  Rowan’s ruminations about the series that was… Continue reading “Well, Dick…it’s time to say goodnight.”


“I could show you scars that would tear your heart out…”

In the fifth season of NBC’s Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In, the comedy/variety program commemorated its 100th telecast by inviting to mingle with its regulars several of the show’s “alumni”: Judy Carne, Henry Gibson, Teresa Graves, Arte Johnson, and Jo Anne Worley.  (Goldie Hawn had also been asked, but she declined.)  The special also made good… Continue reading “I could show you scars that would tear your heart out…”