Elie's Expositions

A bereaved father blogging for catharsis... and for distraction. Accordingly, you'll see a diverse set of topics and posts here, from the affecting to the analytical to the absurd. Something for everyone, but all, at the core, meeting a personal need.


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Thursday, November 08, 2007

TV Trivia Thursday #2

Thanks for your great response to last week's debut of TV Trivia Thursday! I'm having fun with this feature, though the fact-checking is proving to be a bit more effort than anticipated. One new caveat: In deference to my non-Trekkie readers (or the "Trek challenged" as we ought to politely call them), I will restrict my Trek-related trivia to just one per week! And with that:

1) A single episode of the original Star Trek was aired without the usual opening credit voice-over of "Space, The Final Frontier..." - ironically so. Name the episode title, and explain the irony.

2) List at least four non-animated (and non-Star Trek!) shows, all on-air during the mid-to-late 60s, whose title characters had supernatural abilities.

3) This guest star was seen on just three episodes of "Cheers", but had a profound impact on the show's development, being responsible for both the arrival and departure of a lead character - and arguably, a major change of direction in-between. Who was this overachieving visitor?

4) These days, it's de rigueur for every series to have a Final Episode of closure-providing, premise-ending scope, but prior to the 80s this was rather rare, restricted to high concept programs like The Prisoner and The Fugitive. The Mary Tyler Moore Show is generally credited with kicking off the modern trend with its highly publicized tear-jerker finale in 1977, but another sitcom did it two years earlier, with a good bit less shmaltz and fanfare. Name the show, and describe its finale in a sentence or so.

5) From Soccer Dad: What do the shows City of Angels, Barbary Coast, Legend and Ink have in common?

6) Well before this actor warned us that we "wouldn't like him when he gets angry" playing the Hulk's alter ego, he was considerably calmer, though quite busy, as the star of two 60s series. Name the actor and the two shows.

7) What three rural-themed shows aired simultaneously on the same network, had multiple character and setting crossovers, and were all suddenly cancelled at the whim of a hasty executive, two of them at the height of ratings success?

8) Give the first and last names of the seven Gilligan's Island castaways. As a bonus, which one of those first or last names was confirmed by the show's creator but never used on-air?

That's all for now! "Toon" in next week for an all-animated edition!

15 Comments:

At 11/8/07, 10:16 AM, Blogger Soccer Dad said...

2) I dream of Jeannie, Bewitched, My favorite Martian (I'm turning up blank on #4)

3) Sumner Sloan (How did Carla react to his name in the first episode? I forget, but it was a riot.) Now that they're selling seasons of TV shows, I definitely want to get the first season of Cheers.

6) The late Bill Bixby. The aforementioned My favorite Martian and the Courtships of Eddie's father. In the 90's he re-appeared as a regular director of a comedy series. What was that series?

Though I know some others, I'll leave it to others.

 
At 11/8/07, 12:32 PM, Blogger Hila said...

No fair! These are so hard! I wasn't even BORN until 1984, lol! I have seen re-runs of the classic shows, but I certainly don't know enough about them to answer any of these questions...boo...oh well, I guess it's up to the oldies ;-)

 
At 11/8/07, 12:51 PM, Anonymous Elie said...

Hila: I'm glad to share the idea - so start you own TTT! You can focus on the new shows that I won't know!

 
At 11/8/07, 7:51 PM, Blogger Esther said...

My husband and I are really enjoying these!

 
At 11/9/07, 2:43 AM, Blogger Daled Amos said...

Bill Bixby had a third show, The Magician, that started in 1973.

 
At 11/9/07, 12:45 PM, Blogger Elder of Ziyon said...

2) The Flying Nun

 
At 11/9/07, 12:52 PM, Blogger LEL said...

2.Bewitched, I Dream of Genie

4.I think this was the Odd Couple. Felix remarried Gloria.

6.I forgot the actor's name, but one of the shows was "The Courtship of Eddie's Father".

7.Was one of them Green Acres?

8.I only know Ginger Grant and Thurston Howell III. I would guess the bonus question was about Gilligan.

 
At 11/9/07, 1:11 PM, Blogger Jack's Shack said...

8) The Professor was Roy Hinckley and The Skipper was Jonas Grumby

 
At 11/9/07, 3:52 PM, Blogger Yitzchak Goodman said...

Continuing lel's answer to 7, the other two were Petticoat Junction, and Beverly Hillbillies? One of the characters on PJ was Jethro's mother?
I forget how it all intersected with the Green Acres universe.

 
At 11/10/07, 6:50 PM, Blogger Elie said...

Great answers, all! I'll provide the rest tomorrow (Sunday) night, so one more day to guess.

 
At 11/10/07, 9:56 PM, Blogger Soccer Dad said...

I don't know if you wanted the importance of Sumner Sloan.

1) He ditched his graduate student Diane Chambers at Cheers in the first episode.

2) I believe he came back to win her back later which was an impetus for Sam starting dating Diane.

3) He came back at the season of Season 5 to offer her a job, writing, I think. She took the offer and left the bar.

 
At 11/11/07, 9:43 AM, Blogger Soccer Dad said...

The answer to #1 I believe is "Where no man has gone before," the sole title where the omission of the voiceover would be ironic. (Because the title is taken from that voiceover.)

The reason, I'm guessing it was omitted is because it was originally shown as the pilot.

 
At 11/11/07, 8:18 PM, Blogger Elie said...

Here are the full set of answers, most of which were at least partially supplied:

1) Soccer Dad is correct.

2) Lel/SD got two/three of them respectively, and EoZ came up with one I didn't think of myself - thanks! The 4th one I had in mind is "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir".

3) SD pretty much covered it, with one correction: Sumner's middle (season two) appearance was what began to poison Sam and Diane's then-solid relationship by raising doubts in her mind that she could "do better". The relationship spiraled inexorably downward from there, leading to their extremely rancorous breakup at the end of that season.

4) Lel got it! Yay, another Odd Couple fan!

5) ...was SD's question, here's his answer: All those series starred someone who had previously been successful on television and bombed in that series. Wayne Rogers went from MASH to City of Angels. William Shatner starred in a Wild, Wild West knockoff called Barbary Coast. Richard Dean Anderson attempted to give UPN some credibility in his post MacGyver career in starring in Legend. Ted Danson's first post-Cheers starring role was opposite his wife Mary Steenburgen and bombed in Ink.

I don't think that any of these shows made it through a whole season.

6) SD is correct. I loved both those shows, though they were very different genres. Thanks for the extra info, DA - didn't know about that 70s Bixby show.

7) Lel and Yitzchak got the three shows. Green Acres and Petticoat Junction took place in adjacent towns and shared some supporting characters (e.g., Sam Drucker). Granny of TBH guest starred on PJ several times.

To quote Wikipedia: "In the Spring of 1971, CBS executives, prompted by pressure from advertisers seeking a more sophisticated urban audience, decided to refocus its schedule on several "hip" new urban-themed shows, and to make room for them, all of CBS' rural-themed comedies were simultaneously canceled. This action came to be known as "the Rural Purge". Pat Buttram, who played Mr. Haney on Green Acres, famously remarked that, 'It was the year CBS killed everything with a tree in it.'"

In addition to the above shows, they also canned Mayberry R.F.D. and Hee Haw.

8) Lel and Jack got several, here's the complete list:

Gilligan: Though no other name was ever used on the show, series creator Sherwood Schwartz said he had intended the character's first name to be "Willy".

Skipper: Jonas Grumby

Millionaire: Thurston Howell, III

Wife: Eunice "Lovey" Howell

Professor: Roy Hinckley

Movie Star: Ginger Grant

Mary Ann: Mary Ann Summers

 
At 11/11/07, 11:04 PM, Blogger Soccer Dad said...

Did Mrs. Howell ever coach a football team?

 
At 11/12/07, 10:31 AM, Anonymous Elie said...

I also heard that a Gilligan's Island spinoff was planned in which Mrs. Howell is marooned on yet another tropical island, where she meets a charming doctor/dictator who shares her interest in money, power, and French cuisine. It was to be called:

"Lovey in Haiti"

 

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