Monday, July 24, 2017

Newsday TV Books, June 1973.

Even back in 1973, June brought on the doldrums of summer, with rerun-clogged network schedules that just figured no one was really watching. Still, there's enough of interest in these TV Books for us weird nostophiles to merit some scans, so enjoy. Ya weirdo.

I don't know who did this neat cover, illustrating a CBS News special called The Last King of America, but I don't think it's the work of our favorite, Gary Viskupic. Peter Ustinov plays George III as he fields questions from modern-day Eric Sevareid. (Remember to click on the pics to enlarge them, squinty.)
It is a Viskupic drawing (and an oddly-unfinished one at that) which accompanies the corresponding article, with Leo Seligsohn interviewing Ustinov by phone.
In the TV Line, Carol Burton clears up the matters of Elvis' movies, Brandon Cruz' age, and Valerie Harper's weight. (34, 11, and 126, respectively.)
I can almost say for certain that, at a little over four years old, I watched this Wonderful World of Disney special, "50 Happy Years," and probably while in my bathrobe after my Sunday night scrubbing.
I see that Titus Chan, host of The Chan-ese Way, is still kicking and cooking these days. His show premiered on this Monday evening. Me, I was probably watching Wait 'til Your Father Gets Home.
Another lock for childhood viewing, the latest Peanuts special, He's Your Dog, Charlie Brown, aired Tuesday night. Then the kiddies could switch right over to ABC for the repeat of That Certain Summer, ensuring they'd never look at dad quite the same way again.
Charlie Callas (and a macaw I have learned was named Crunch) are your tour guides for The Wacky Weeki Wachee and Silver Springs Singing and Comedy Thing. I'm assuming the "Theodore" mentioned here is Brother Theodore, and I'll also wishfully assume that he strangles Charlie in the last act, as his diminishing cries of "Frrt!" go unheard.
Here's a Viskupic throwaway for a warmed-over episode of The Dean Martin Show on Thursday. More interesting is the 1:20 showing of Reel Camp on WNEW, a show minimally recalled on the intranerts, mostly, I'd suppose, by erstwhile New York City-area stoners. Here the show presents Love and Hisses (in fact, probably the 1927 Laurel and Hardy short With Love and Hisses, not the 82 minute film from '37) and 1950's Spooky Wooky.
 I've published this Viskupic close-up for a PBS profile of Thoreau elsewhere on this blog, so I present it here in the original context of the Saturday listings.
 In this ad, the Evelyn Wood Reading Dynamics (speed-reading) Course employs a stern-looking teacher brandishing a ruler to motivate you to enroll. In my hometown of Plainview, you'd have headed over to the King's Grant Inn for the free "mini-lessons." (I guess you would just read this TV Book really fast, in hopes of someday working your way up to Gravity's Rainbow.)
The back cover advertisement features a really fine-looking shed from Macy's. That is not a sentence I would once have imagined myself uttering sans irony, but there you have it. I guess old people appreciate a nice shed.
The lovely Pamela Shoop graces the cover for the week before Father's Day (more on that later!), but the related story is less about her and more about her Return to Peyton Place character and the many actresses who had thus far played her. (As far as I can tell, she was the last.)
TV Line fills us in on one-man band Jon Walmsley as well as where to get the travel version of Hounds and Jackals.
Here's a close-up on Ted Knight, co-hosting on The Mike Douglas Show this week, which tells his real name and his character's name but not his, uh, name name.
Viskupic sketches up Brando (as he's done before) for his appearance on Dick Cavett's late-night program. You can see my penciled-in note where movie reviewer John Cashman has dropped in one of his helpful actor-identifying adjectives--and it's one I haven't even gotten around to including on my page collecting them...
If there are two phrases that guarantee guffaws in a sitcom, it's "Julie Harris" and "ailing octogenarian father." Bring on the funny!
Another pilot that doesn't appear to be long for this world is Love Thy Neighbor. (There isn't even a Wikipedia entry for it.) Please note the channel 9 movie at four, the final guest visiting Mike Douglas, and that F-Troop episode...
Not much of a week, but at least there are these two Father's Day advertisement pages to remind us just how goddamn groovy dad is. Why not show him with the gift of a hairpiece?
Here's a series of Galloways...
...now let's read the article to see what he Gallo-means! (Yeah, I know that was bad.)
Kung Fu's parables, Radar's drumming ability, Sonny and Cher's ball, Liza and Wayne... Long Islanders want to know what's up.
Good luck finding info online about the pilots for The Fabulous Dr. Fable or D.H.O., as they seem to have been dumped onto this Monday night schedule and subsequently forgotten.
Famed drummer and renowned asshole Buddy Rich has his head replaced by a cymbal by Viskupic in this Monday night close-up.
The next night, Visk offers a creepy crying baby (or the upper portion of one, anyway) for an NBC Reports feature on yankee-fathered Vietnamese orphans. More pilots are shot down, with tonight's casualties being Keep an Eye on Denise, Big Daddy with Rosey Grier, and Daddy's Girl with Eddie Albert.
Other than some memorable sitcom episodes, this evening is notable only for a third Viskupic sketch, this one for a PBS Rembrandt bio.
We'll end this week with a couple of ads. First here's a futuristic item for an optometrist in Cedarhurst (I guess it's a line drawing of their front door?)...
...and then it's four ads for grads, in which we find that Mickey's Mart has the latest in "hiphugger bells" for you and a naked pal to share.
Into the last week of June we go, with Second City alums Jack Burns and Avery Schreiber kicking off their summer series. Burns looks especially Leno-ish in the cover shot, but rather rodent-like in the pic with the accompanying story (which seems appropriate considering the menagerie he's got at home).
More Kung Fu info in this TV Line, plus the skinny on Roddy McDowell and Mel Blanc.
A while back I made a reference to a local program hosted by newswoman Melba Tolliver being pre-empted, but I must have gotten my timeline a bit screwy. I was almost certainly thinking of this style edition of People Places and Things, which clearly was given a close-up before Brezhnev decided to address the American public at six p.m. on a Sunday.
Nasal bleater Helen Reddy gets her own show on this Thursday, and George Voskovec gets the high hat from reviewer Cashman as the only Angry Man out of twelve without a mention.
Two more Viskupic inkings now: One for Music from Ambler, the meaning of which I can't discern;
And another depicting a spooky-eyed Dickens with a nib for a beard. Do you see why Gary V.'s art always gave me the willies?
We kill off this month with yet another cluster of ads, these proffering "vacation values for the whole family," but really mostly dad.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Waldman "Circus" Coloring Book, 1964.

I interrupt this blog (which I seem to have decided should be entirely devoted to my Newsday TV Books--that was an actual decision, right?) to present something I found in my archives, there for no reason other than it came with a bunch of other stuff in a plastic-bagged assortment of thrift store randomness. I was about to chuck it when I flipped through and a few pages caught my eye. The lack of representation I found on the internerts led me to scan these and put them here, and now you're looking at them. What the hell is wrong with us?

The cover has the requisite appalling clown and a suggested price of twenty-nine cents, which discount store Topps has cut down to twelve-and-a-half.
The "story" concerns a circus coming to town, some kids wanting to see it, them seeing it and then reenacting it. I've only scanned a handful of the many, many, many pages (I have to remind myself that this was 20 years before Intellivision and MTV, as I wonder who the fuck could want to color all this--there's about eight pages of dancing horses alone), and I present them in the order of my damn pleasing.
 Yep, lots of clowns in this one. None are especially creepy, but few are happy-faced. (Need I have bothered to mention that the book is liberally scribbled-at? God, kids wreck everything!)
 I didn't even know J.K. Simmons was working in '64, but I love how he brings that faint air of menace to his role of "Monkey Conductor."
A good coloring book artist can convey so much in even the crudest of drawings, as evinced by the dismay in this little guy's face. I'm not sure why there's a hose running up his ass and out his mouth, but it's an intriguingly surreal detail of an already perplexing scene.
Mm-hmm.
Most impressive!
With this crummy gig, can you blame her? 
Hey, lucky you! This page, with its vintage unintentional drug reference, is unsullied by wild, indiscriminate crayon-scruffings, so you can print it out for yourself and your stoner pals! Pin it to your rec room wall, but be sure to color it first. You know, coloring for adults is all the rage, and why not? The Information Age has given us all kinds of free time for mindless busy work! Take THAT, stupid word-reading and thought-thinking!
"...and my apologies to the families in section four, about to be spattered with gore and entangled in my large intestine when I'm blown in half. For God's sake, cover your children's eyes!"

Yes, I'm afraid this is...
...but it seems more appropriate to let this feminist hobo clown bring things to a close by saying...
Now I can throw the damn thing out!