Monday, November 29, 2010

Jo Anne Worley is BOLD

Among the extras on THE MOTHERS-IN-LAWS dvd set are some great vintage commercials. The best of these is for the detergent BOLD featuring zany LAUGH-IN star Jo Anne Worley. Words cannot describe this commercial, so you'll just have to settle for these screen grabs.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Leslie Nielsen 1926-2010


As I mentioned yesterday, Disc 8 of THE MOTHERS-IN-LAW has a few added bonuses. One of these is the complete pilot for an unsold Desi Arnaz-produced sitcom from 1966 called THE CAROL CHANNING SHOW. The show is built around the Broadway legend and tries to play off of her zany personality.
The show begins with wacky Carol Honeycutt introducing herself to the audience while wearing an enormous hat on her enormous head.
 Followed by some of the grooviest opening titles ever created.
 See I told you.
The opening scene has hungry, homeless, but peppy Carol trying to get a kid to share his snack with her. The kid brushes her off and soon a amorous young couple with hotdogs are seated next to her.
While the couple makes out, Carol makes off with their wieners. So begins the first of Carol's Lucy-like antics that fill this 40-minute laughfest.
Of course Carol gets caught in the act. Then Carol's friend Florence shows up and invites her to stay with her and her husband Leon until she gets on her feet.
So of course Carol sneaks into Florence's house and helps herself to food and drink, but Leon (THE MOTHERS-IN-LAW's Richard Deacon) thinks she's a thief and tries to shoot her. Unfortunately he shoots himself in the foot instead.
Carol then volunteers to nurse Leon back to health. That doesn't work out to well, so then gets a job at a steak house where she has a run-in with a crazed electric knife.
Carol chops up flowers, breadsticks and then attacks some customers. Chaos ensues and Carol is fired. Luckily no one is killed.
Next, she gets a job at a dance hall. Only she can't compete with the sexiness of some of the other dancers. Like this one...
Carol then proceeds to pin up her skirt and unbutton her blouse to attract takers.
 Carol wins over most of the men and gets to demonstrate a bunch of ridiculous dances.
She ends up becoming the belle of the ball, so much in fact that men are soon fighting over her.
But of course the place gets wrecked in the process, so Carol is forced to take to the stage for an impromptu song.
It all ends with Carol Honeycutt giving us an epilogue which makes no sense whatsoever.
And then the groovy closing credits begin. Yay.
One wonders what would have happened if THE CAROL CHANNING SHOW was picked up and became a hit? Would it be TV Land classic today? Would people think of Carol the same way we think of Lucy? The world will never know. Also included on the disc are a bunch a great vintage commercials, the best being one for Bold detergent featuring the talents of LAUGH-IN star Jo Anne Worley. Tune in tomorrow...

Friday, November 19, 2010

Best Opening Titles Ever

Been super busy with work, travel, PRETTY and various other things in my life. So please enjoy this repost from exactly one year ago today. Yeah, I know I've talked about how much the MARY TYLER MOORE show has influenced my life before, but watching season 5 of the series on DVD has made me once again appreciate the wonderful opening titles. I've decided to take an in depth look at the sequence, which is unparalleled in its greatness. More happens in this brief montage that in most episodes of other TV shows.It all starts off simply enough with a brilliant blue background, with MARY TYLER MOORE in Peignot Bold popping off in a delicious mustard.
Suddenly the field turns jet black and MARY TYLER MOORE turns to an avocado green with multicolored MTM clones popping out above and below.
The roll continues, soon the screen is filling with multi-colored MARY TYLER MOOREs.
Eleven stacked MARY TYLER MOOREs in a rainbow of colors!
Suddenly the color in the center MARY TYLER MOORE gives way to an image of Mary Tyler Moore!!!
Yup, it's Mary Richards alright. I think she sees me.
She does! Hi Mary!Fix your hair, Mare.
Hey Mary, don't jaywalk! Nice yellow pantsuit, though.
Oh Minneapolis, where it cold, almost all the time.
Oh wait, it's not cold anymore. In fact, the weather is delightful today! So delightful that series creators James L. Brooks and Allan Burns decide go go for a jog that day.
Back to work, Mary. Hey who's that boozy blond broad who works at WJM? I'd love to see her featured in an episode or two. I bet her name is Rosalie.
Time to wash the car in a football jersey!
Damn - meat is so expensive!
Wonder why nobody else is out shoe shopping at Mary Jane's today?
Awww, Mary bought a plant and now she's riding an escalator.
Now it's time to feed the ducks!
Nobody does a graceful turnaround like Mary.
Hey, who is that old dude you're eating with Mary??? Popular belief is that he's Mary's then-husband and MTM co-founder Grant Tinker. I recall Grant being taller and more handsome, this guy looks more like Merv Griffin to me.
Mary then joins a group of school children for a walk.
Wow - Mary is out on field covering a news story!
Now she's jaywalking again.
Ah, the office building that houses WJM, channel 12.
Mary then gives her boss Lou Grant a bear hug.
Next, co-worker Murray Slaughter gives Mary a slightly inappropriate hug.And finally news anchor Ted Baxter gets a polite hug.
Oops, but Mary crushed his fedora!
On the subject of hats, that's a pretty groovy one you've got there, Mary.
Hey, what are you doing in the middle of the street? 7th Street and Nicollet Mall is no place to stand during rush hour.
Hazel Frederick is watching you and she is not pleased.It all ends with the only credit listed. You're gonna make it after all! In May 2002, TV Land erected a statue of Mary Richards in that very spot. Hazel Frederick passed away ten years ago this month at the age of 91.