Wednesday, July 30, 2014


I never watched NICHOLS when it was on new. It was opposite the latter part of ABC's Tuesday MOVIE OF THE WEEK and that was a golden age for TV movies so we usually watched those, especially since it was also opposite the beginning of MARCUS WELBY, MD, one of my mother's favorite series. I liked James Garner though, from barely remembered MAVERICK episodes and a few movies. Over the years, I wished I had watched NICHOL, especially when he himself said it was probably his favorite of all his series.

With his recent passing, I've finally begun to watch episodes and while I'm enjoying it immensely, I can see why it failed. One week, it's a drama, the next a sitcom. One week, Nichols is a reluctant hero, the next he's attempting an elaborate robbery with a handpicked group of criminal experts. One week co-star John Beck is an antagonist, the next he's comic relief. The only consistent characterization is that of Neva Patterson as the woman who runs the town and her character is given much deeper characterization than she really needs (although so much fun to watch!) 

NICHOLS was also the place where Garner put together the crew who would follow him into THE ROCKFORD FILES, his infinitely superior next series. But NICHOLS can't just be written off because, taken on their own, the episodes I've seen thus far have been wonderful fun!
R.I.P. James Garner

Thursday, July 24, 2014

TV is Back

So today, for the first time in several years, we get TV back. Haven't really missed it, mind you. Just that it's turned out to be cheaper to get 200 channels back than to have none. Go figure. No idea if we'll even turn the thing on any more than we have been. We're so used to NOT mindlessly flipping channels hoping to find something better on. We'll see. Not even sure what channels we'll be getting. Don't really care. We'll see how this goes.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

R.I.P. James Garner

Sometimes James Garner played just plain tough guys. He was good at it, but so were scores of other actors of his generation. What made James Garner something special was when they allowed him to be James Garner first and his character second. In that way, Garner brought a vulnerability, an amiability and an outright Oklahoma charm that no other actor could give a role. He brought it to the title role on MAVERICK in the late fifties and it was a huge success! Lightning struck twice when he also brought it to his second iconic role, Jim Rockford, a decade and a half later.

Not only was James Garner able to capture the lightning twice but he successfully revisited both those roles in later years before settling into a career as an always-reliable character actor and voiceover artist.
R.I.P. James Garner

Thursday, July 10, 2014

The Flash-2014

Count me among the fans who were very disappointed to see these early images of the new TV FLASH. Recently, though, I had a chance to catch the pilot for the new series and I have to say I've changed my opinion. In context, and especially when moving, it works. In fact, the whole pilot works. There's nothing majorly special about it but it's a good, entertaining origin story with some above average performances and the participation of former TV Flash John Wesley Shipp as Barry Allen's father in what will be a running back story. I don't watch a lot of modern TV, even comics-related TV. I missed almost all of SMALLVILLE, I only caught a couple episodes of BIRDS OF PREY and ARROW and I have no intention of watching GOTHAM. I will, however, be on board for the 2014 version of THE FLASH!