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Category: Humor

8 THINGS YOU NEVER KNEW ABOUT ‘THE CAROL BURNETT SHOW’

Posted in Celebs, Humor, and TV

Me-TV presents 8 THINGS YOU NEVER KNEW ABOUT ‘THE CAROL BURNETT SHOW’.  Here are three of my favorites…

EACH EPISODE WAS TAPED TWICE.
Despite having the feel of a live TV program, each episode was taped twice in front of different studio audiences. That meant that if an actor flubbed a line in both takes, it was still included in the final edited episode.

DICK VAN DYKE WAS A CAST MEMBER.
Although Burnett was the star of the show, she was supported by an incredibly talented cast that included Lawrence, Korman, Waggoner and Conway. When Korman left after the tenth season, Dick Van Dyke replaced him. The lack of chemistry among the cast members and Van Dyke proved to be a disaster, which is why he left after three months.

THE SHOW NEVER RANKED IN THE TOP 10.
The Carol Burnett Show is consistently ranked on critics’ lists as one of the best television programs of all time. However, the series was not a ratings juggernaut when it aired from 1967 to 1978. Although the show peaked at No. 13 in the Nielsen ratings during the 1969-1970 season, it consistently ranked in the 20s for the first nine seasons.

13 Intriguing Facts About the 1962 Graveyard Smash the “Monster Mash”

Posted in Celebs, Horror, Humor, Movies, and Music

Me-TV presents 13 Intriguing Facts About the 1962 Graveyard Smash the Monster Mash.  Here are three of my favorites…

THE CRYPT-KEEPERS FEATURED SOME KEY FIGURES.
“The Crypt-Kickers” band behind the original “Monster Mash” recording featured Gary S. Saxton, who wrote the 1960 smash hit “Alley Oop” that Pickett said inspired his song. The flip side of the record featured Leon Russell (whose “A Song for You” has been covered by more than 200 artists) on “Monster Mash Party.” Russell played piano, which he also did on songs for bands like the Beach Boys and Jan and Dean. Elton John calls Russell a mentor. Considering this track record, it makes even more sense why the “Monster Mash” single took off.

THE BEACH BOYS LOVED TO PLAY IT LIVE.
Several successful cover versions of “Monster Mash” exist, including a memorable version by the Beach Boys. They made it a feature of their live show, where Mike Love came out of “his cage” to step up on vocals and the audience would flip out. Later the punk band the Misfits would revive the song again for audiences in 1997, as it was a favorite childhood song of the band’s bassist, Jerry Only, who said the decision to cover it was a “no-brainer” for the heavily Halloween-themed band who performed on the holiday every year. We wonder whose fans loved it more. Hear Beach Boys fans lose their minds screaming in response to the song below. (Click over to see the video of the Beach Boys playing the Monster Mash.)

PICKETT APPEARED IN FILMS OF VARIED CLASSIC GENRES.
When Pickett wrote “Monster Mash,” he was also an aspiring actor. He went on to appear in a handful of films that matched his heavy sense of genre, including the beach party movie It’s a Bikini World (1967), a foray into biker culture in Chrome and Hot Leather (1971) a horror movie (of course) Deathmaster (1972), and a novelty sci-fi film, Lobster Man From Mars (1989). Additionally, he wrote a bunch of musicals like Frankenstein Unbound.

 

Harvey (1950)

Posted in Humor, Movies, and Z-View

Harvey (1950)

Director: Henry Koster

Screenplay: Mary Chase & Oscar Brodney from the play by Mary Chase

Stars:  James Stewart, Wallace Ford, William H. Lynn

The Pitch: “Let’s turn ‘Harvey’ into a movie!”

Tagline: The Wonderful Pulitzer Prize Play… becomes one of the Great Motion Pictures of our Time!

The Overview:  Beware of Spoilers…

Folks know Elwood P. Dowd (Stewart) to be a bit, uh, eccentric.  After all he believes that his best pal is a six-foot tall invisible rabbit.  When his sister has had enough and decides to have Elwood committed a comedy of errors ensues.

Rating:

The Original Ending to “Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?”

Posted in Horror, Humor, and TV

If you’re a Twilight Zone fan, then you have to admire Rod Serling’s writing.  Best known for his twist endings, Serling could lead you down a path to believe one thing and then in the last scene come up with a reveal that made you understand something else.  It was often the difference between a good story and a great one.

One of the best Twilight Zone twist endings takes place in Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?.  Serling’s tale unfolds as a typical sci-fi story with a potential crashed alien space craft and a group of travelers stuck in a remote dinner during a bad snowstorm.  Serling ups the ante by dropping clues that one of the passengers is the alien!

To ratchet the tension Serling makes a case for each passenger being the alien.  Then like all really good scary stories, Serling makes us think all is well and – BAM! – he drops the twist ending on us… except in Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?, Serling follows the twist with a second twist that turns the episode into a classic.

Would you be surprised to know that wasn’t the ending that Serling had originally written?  Over at Shadow & Substance they have the lowdown on the way the story was supposed to end (it still would have been good, but without the classic double twist).  Click over and you can read Sterling’s original ending and learn more about the episode.

Neal Adams Presents “Batman vs Elmer Fudd” by Tom King and Lee Weeks

Posted in Art, Comics, Crime, and Humor

Batman vs Elmer Fudd.

Sounds stupid, right?  No way in the world this could be an excellent comic book, right?

Wrong.  Way wrong.

Written by Tom King with art by Lee Weeks, Batman vs Elmer Fudd is an amazingly good comic.  Since it sold out of it’s initial print run, if you want to get a copy you’re probably out of luck.  However comics legend Neal Adams has created a video homage that is worth a watch.

Source: Neal Adams.

Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff (1949) / Z-View

Posted in Crime, Horror, Humor, Movies, and Z-View

Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff (1949)

Director: Charles T. Barton

Screenplay: Hugh Wedlock Jr. & Howard Snyder

Stars:  Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Boris Karloff

The Pitch: “It’s time for Bud and Lou to meet Boris!”

Tagline: MORE GHOULISH GLEE THAN WHEN THEY MET FRANKENSTEIN

The Overview:  Beware of Spoilers…

When the bellboy (Costello) becomes the prime suspect of a murder in a remote hotel full of shady characters, only the hotel dick (Abbott) believes his innocence.  The race is on to find the killer before he kills again… and the bellboy is in the killer’s sights!

I was surprised that Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff didn’t hold up as well as I remembered it.  I was sure it would get a “B” rating or higher.  As a kid, it would have gotten an “A” — yet it is still fun with some good laughs.

Rating:

Mister Roberts (1955) / Z-View

Posted in Humor, and Movies

Mister Roberts (1955)

Director: John Ford, Mervyn LeRoy , Joshua Logan (uncredited)

Screenplay: Frank S. Nugent and Joshua Logan based on the play by  Thomas Heggen and
Joshua Logan from the novel by Thomas Heggen

Stars:  Henry Fonda, James Cagney, William Powell, Jack Lemmon, Betsy Palmer, Ward Bond, Nick Adams, Ken Curtis, Harry Carey, Jr. and Patrick Wayne

The Pitch: “Let’s turn the Broadway Play ‘Mister Roberts’ into a movie!’”

Tagline: The Six-Year Stage Smash on the Screen!

The Overview:  Beware of Spoilers…

Easy-going Lt. Roberts (Fonda) has done such a great job acting as a buffer between the tyrannical Captain Morton (Cagney) and his men that every attempt to get into the action of WWII has been stopped.  Yet the fallout from the men’s last leave may finally get Roberts his wish.

Mister Roberts is one of those movies that most folks like better than me, so as always, your mileage may vary.

Rating:

58 Things We Learned from James Gunn’s “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” Commentary

Posted in Celebs, Humor, Movies, and Trivia

Rob Hunter and Film School Rejects present 58 Things We Learned from James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Commentary.  Here are three of my favorites…

24. Glen Campbell’s “Southern Nights” was one of his favorite songs as a child, and he recalls the joy of attending a 4th of July party a couple years ago “at Jane Seymour’s house of all places” where he got to meet Campbell and listen to some live music from the man.

42. Stan Lee with the Watchers “doesn’t mean Stan Lee is a Watcher,”, but “who knows what Stan Lee is.”

55. Stallone asked how his line at Yondu’s viking funeral should be delivered, and Gunn replied “‘Have you seen the movie Babe?’ and he said ‘Yeah!’ I’m like this is you saying ‘That’ll do pig.’” My favorite part of this anecdote is the image of Stallone watching Babe.

 

The 100 Greatest Comedies of All Time

Posted in Humor, and Movies

BBC Culture polled 253 film critics from 52 countries to determine The 100 Greatest Comedies of All Time.  While I question Pulp Fiction as one of the all time greatest comedies, I’ll play along.  Using just their list, here are my top six…

  1. Step Brothers (Adam McKay, 2008)

  2. Arsenic and Old Lace (Frank Capra, 1944)

  3. Young Frankenstein (Mel Brooks, 1974)

  4. Blazing Saddles (Mel Brooks, 1974)

  5. Airplane! (Jim Abrahams, David Zucker and Jerry Zucker, 1980)\

  6. Dr Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (Stanley Kubrick, 1964)

12 Tiny Little Goofs You Never Spotted in “I Love Lucy”

Posted in Humor, Trivia, and TV

Me-TV presents 12 Tiny Little Goofs You Never Spotted in I Love Lucy.  Here are three of my favorites…

FRED’S HEAD   “Redecorating”
Near the end, Lucy and Ricky enter the room, which has been wildly covered in wallpaper. Take a look behind the two when they walk in the door. William Frawley (Fred) can be spotted in the background, peeking around a wall, awaiting his cue. He quickly realizes he is in the the shot and steps back to hide.

CABLE CAR  “Lucy Learns to Drive”
Ever wonder how they drove those big ol’ automobiles on a closed set? Well, they didn’t. The cars were pulled around with cables. In this episode, Ethel waits for Ricky to pull up. When his car arrives, a thin black cable can be seen tugging the the vehicle into the shot. The black wire shakes wildly as it hauls in that heavy car.

RECYCLING THE PAPER   “Ricky’s Old Girlfriend” and “Lucy’s Club Dance”
The same New York Gazette newspaper appears repeatedly on the show. Either that, or “BOND ISSUE DEFEATED” was a common headline back in the 1950s.

45 Things We Learned from Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg’s ‘This Is the End’ Commentary.

Posted in Celebs, Horror, Humor, and Trivia


Rob Hunter and Film School Rejects recently posted 45 Things We Learned from Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg’s ‘This Is the End’ Commentary.   Here are three of my favorites…

8. The front of James Franco‘s house is mostly CG. The interior was built in a coffee bean warehouse. There were so many movies filming in New Orleans at the time that there were no proper sound stages available.

41. Franco fought them on his character dying as he didn’t think it should happen. Once he realized it was a losing argument he suggested the false rapture bit instead. “That joke’s literally from a Bugs Bunny cartoon.”

43. The movie originally ended with Seth and Jay rising up into heaven as the final shot, but early audiences demanded to see heaven.