Friday, December 24, 2010

Online Pick of the Week (12/24): Match Game ‘78

Posting this now before I forget; one of my favorite televised holiday moments. This is from the Christmas episode of Match Game ‘78. Here, we can see Brett and Charles have fun and dress up in costume for the occasion. This isn’t the first time Charles dressed as Santa. He also did it in 1973 and 1977. Definitely one of the best moments of what’s known as the “post-Richard Dawson” era of the show.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Online Pick of the Week (10/18): Christmas Commercials

Been scouring and searching YouTube today for some Christmas themed commercials now that I’m finally in the Christmas spirit. A lot of great ones are out there.

A number of them are the favorites that I grew up watching over the years. For instance, this one for Fruity Pebbles; very heartwarming. And this one from Stetson colognes. Also, who can forget this classic Folgers ad, which dates back to 1982 and has been repeated many times over the years since its original television debut? Another favorite: the Coca-Cola Panda ads.

There’s also a long forgotten one from 1991 for Target featuring the legendary Betty White. Cheesy, but fun. About one minute into this clip, the late Bea Arthur does a holiday commercial for a Canadian drug store chain, Shoppers; it is from 1987.

Grocery chain Publix always puts out really cute ads all-year round, and the Christmas season is certainly no exception. Take a look at this one from 1997.

Holiday commercials are my pick for this week. What are your favorites?

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Online Pick of the Week: Bob Newhart Show Promos

A short look but a good look at a couple of promos for The Bob Newhart Show, one featuring Mary Tyler Moore, whose show aired on the same night, which was on Saturday.

Judging from the promo graphics and Suzanne Pleshette’s hair, I’m pretty safe in assuming this is from 1972. As usual with a lot of classic TV, I see the shows themselves, but it’s a rare treat in itself to see how the shows were originally pitched to the viewing audience.

Uploaded by wny. - Check out other Film & TV videos.

My online pick of the week!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Online Pick of the Week (12/4): Beat the Clock

A look at the rarely-aired color version of Beat the Clock with Jack Narz is my pick this week. The guest features the late Leslie Nielsen.

This version seems to get some flack from the game show community, but in spite of its cheapness compared to the earlier nighttime version with Bud Collyer, I actually find this era of the series pretty enjoyable. I guess there was really no way at all to match the budgets since one version aired on network prime time television weekly and the other was shot for daily first-run syndication.

I think the celebrities’ appearances are a big regard to this. There’s also been appearances by Bert Convy, Tom Kennedy, Ted Knight, Henry Morgan, William Shatner, Dick Clark, Gene Rayburn, Peggy Cass, and Louis Nye, to name several. It’s been so long since GSN’s aired it on a regular basis, it’d be nice to know who else appeared on it.

This episode was uploaded by a good pal of mine, GarryMooreFan. My pick!

Siskel and Ebert: What’s Wrong With Home Video?

Granted, the show was obviously movie-oriented, but in seeing this particular episode of Siskel & Ebert, which was done back in 1988, it particularly got my attention enough to blog about it because the points brought up really do remind me an awful lot of the imperfections that have come from TV-on-DVD releases over the past several years. It’s really pretty parallel.

Movies presented in their original form are a big point of the episode. Reminds me of course of the syndication and musical cuts in some TV shows. This would include Rhoda, Roseanne, The Cosby Show, and A Different World, which saw the syndicated cuts of their first seasons on DVD; and shows like WKRP in Cincinnati which got both syndicated prints and heavy amounts of music removed from its first seasons set. Most TV fans of course prefer to see episodes in their original uncut form, especially on DVD; this was especially evident with Roseanne, Rhoda, and Cosby Show's releases. The fandom response was enough to garner the uncut masters for their remaining seasons.

Even as technology evolves, we’ve seen issues such as cropping still come up. For example; take How I Met Your Mother’s first season DVD set, which contains the episodes in full screen format instead of the original 16:9. About four episodes in the Golden Girls season 7 set are cropped to something that resembles a widescreen image even though they originally aired in full screen. It's also interesting that widescreen cropping was an issue then, but today we have instances where 4:3 images mess up and air wrong and we get them squashed on a 16:9 screen.

I loved Roger’s point about the issues of harder to find movies in stores, in his case he‘s referring to foreign movies; but it also reminds me so much of TV-on-DVD releases. These days, as I browse in stores, I find it harder and harder to find a really good selection of shows. Most stores just have recent hits and a few classics (if any). Walmart, well, at least the Walmart in my area, is the biggest example of this. Stores like Fry’s and Best Buy seem to do better jobs with selection. It gets frustrating when looking for a favorite show and honestly I just end up in many instances calling it a day just selecting and looking for certain shows online. It obviously had to be a good thing for fans of rarely sold movies of any kind in stores when the online shopping scene emerged; no more of being let down when perusing for a hard-to-find favorite.

Remembering Leslie Nielsen

We lost another legendary actor earlier this week. Comedic actor Leslie Nielsen passed away Sunday of pneumonia at the age of 83.

In seeing tributes to him earlier in the week, I was surprised to see that he had done multiple serious roles. In fact, he had many roles of such a nature before the classic comedy Airplane! and the Naked Gun movies came along, which evolved from the short-lived Police Squad!. Roles on Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, Bonanza, and Hawaii Five-O.

Leslie also appeared on many game shows over the years, including Match Game, Beat the Clock, Password All-Stars, and Celebrity Bowling. The final game show appearance was on the Game Show Marathon in 2006. I really enjoyed his playing of Press Your Luck on that.

My favorite television role of Leslie’s hands down has to be his role as Blanche’s uncle and soon to be Dorothy’s love interest Lucas Hollingsworth on the series finale of The Golden Girls. That was a really great casting choice; he and Bea Arthur really clicked in their scenes.

Surely he’ll rest in peace. Oh, sorry, I couldn’t call him Shirley. Rest in peace, Leslie.