Thursday, May 24, 2018

You Know The Voice: Louise "Liberty" Williams (1973)

Let's try this one again.

From season 4 of The Mary Tyler Moore Show:

Mary heads to New York with bestie Rhoda Morganstern (Valerie Harper) for the wedding of Rhoda's younger sister, Debbie (Louise "Liberty" Williams), who's only 21. Debbie falls into the category of forgotten siblings because she was never heard from again, and when Rhoda was spun off into her own series, she was given another sister, Brenda (Julie Kavner, currently on The Simpsons). Nancy Walker (McMillian & Wife) & Harold Gould play Ida & Martin Morganstern. Brett Somers (Match Game) also guest stars in "Rhoda's Sister Gets Married":

I think Debbie's parting gifts included a case of Bounty paper towels, which Nancy Walker was shilling for back in those days.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Getting Schooled: Fat Albert in Mainstream (1979)

You might want to fast forward past Brown Hornet for this installment of Fat Albert & The Cosby Kids.

I think it's fair to assume that Dennis, the gang's new classmate, would be diagnosed today as being autistic or having Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), as the word, "retarded", is no longer acceptable.

As for Brown Hornet, the never ending serial was on fumes by this point. This episode was first broadcast in 1979, but the wraparound open & close is for the 1984 syndicated series.

Brown Hornet gets a C.

The episode itself is a B-.

Animated World of DC Comics: DC Super Hero Girls finally comes to Cartoon Network

After being available only online and On Demand since their launch a couple of years ago, Cartoon Network is welcoming DC Super Hero Girls in an all new series coming later this year or next year.

Lauren Faust, whose resume includes Powerpuff Girls and My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, is on board as a show-runner. No firm premiere date has been set as of press time. To refresh everyone's memory, here's a compilation of season 1 installments, including the opener, which has previously been posted here.

Since then, more DC heroines, including Mera and one of the newest Green Lanterns, Jessica Cruz, have been added to the cast. As long as CN doesn't screw around with it, we're fine.

Long as I'm talking news here, there has to be a downside to things.

CN also has green-lit a new Thundercats series. That's the good news. The bad is that it's another lame comedy series in the vein of Teen Titans Go!, but the character designs look more like the work of the Steven Universe crew. Take that however you wish. Thundercats Roar is set for a 2019 debut. Following is a trailer:

Turns out the show will look more like TTG than the above trailer.

Will they never learn?

Monday, May 21, 2018

Toons After Dark: Fred Flintstone as The Dabba Don (Harvey Birdman, Attorney-At-Law, 2002)

The Sopranos was one of the hottest cable shows at the time it was being parodied on Harvey Birdman, Attorney-at-Law during the latter's 1st season.

Fred Flintstone (voiced here by Maurice LaMarche) envisions himself as a Tony Soprano type, and tries to work out a business deal with Harvey (Gary Cole), while Peanut, the former Birdboy, is trying to insinuate himself with "Freddie". Archived footage from The Flintstones is used with new dialogue dubbed over.

Why bring this up? Because [adult swim] is bringing Harvey back from the dead in an all-new special airing later this year. Cole and Stephen Colbert will return. With Colbert a little extra busy these days with the Late Show on CBS, one wonders if he'll promote the special.

One of the better episodes of the series, which from this desk isn't saying much.

Rating: B-.

Animated World of DC Comics: Batman vs. the Crime Doctor (1993)

From season 2 of Batman: The Animated Series:

Batman (Kevin Conroy) has to rescue one of his childhood benefactors, Dr. Leslie Tompkins (Diana Muldaur), who's been conscripted to aid the Crime Doctor for an important operation. You see, Dr. Matthew Thorne, aka the Crime Doctor, is the brother of mob boss Rupert Thorne (John Vernon, ex-Delta House). Rupert needs heart surgery, and since he already has brother Matt under his thumb, he arranges for Leslie to be Matt's nurse.

Joseph Campanella guest stars in "Paging The Crime Doctor":

In memory of Campanella, who passed away last week at 93.

Rating: A-.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Tooniversary: Lassie's Rescue Rangers meet The Imposters (1973)

It's one of the oldest tropes in television. Evil twins. In this case, in this episode of Lassie's Rescue Rangers, Lassie & the Forest Force are framed for a series of robberies by a mad scientist who has developed robotic doubles of the entire team, animals included, in a scheme likely borne out of sheer envy. Ted Knight has a dual role as the villain (what a shock).

When Dandy Deal posted this video two years ago, he cut the video off a wee bit too soon, and at the time had a habit of doing that. One of these days, the series, if it isn't already, should be on DVD. NBC-Universal now owns the rights by virtue of Comcast's purchase of Dreamworks Classic.

Rating: B.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Looney TV: Hollywood Steps Out (1941-2)

This Merrie Melodies entry, "Hollywood Steps Out", does its share of tweaking the show business elite. The original title card was lost from this print, and that explains the remastered, relatively generic version created two years ago.

Today, you couldn't do anything like this.

Rating: A.