Friday, July 24, 2015

Another "Dynasty" fan shares photos of his collection

In the September 20, 2013 and May 24, 2014 posts of this blog, we showed you the collection of Bjørn, an avid "Dynasty" fan who owns several wardrobe pieces from the show. Now, behold part of the collection from another fan of Nolan Miller's wonderful costuming.

"I am a Nolan Miller collector," this fan tells BRBTV, "and the bulk of my collection is gowns from 'Dynasty.' I have four 'Dynasty' gowns and a few 'Dynasty' sketches, along with a few non-'Dynasty' pieces."

This collector is wondering about others out there who own Nolan Miller pieces. If you do, comment on this post! (And see that September 2013 link above for some comments from other collectors.)

Remember the divine pink poufy piece below on our girl Alexis Carrington Colby? Recognize the others? Which episodes are they from? And did Alexis wear all of them, or only one of them? Let's play a little guessing game! You can certainly see Nolan Miller's trademark 1980s touches on these lovely gowns ...

 Photos courtesy of Anonymous; please comment to this blog for permission to copy.

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Lots of appearances coming up for our two Duke boys

Thanks to Phyllis once again for passing along this info on the upcoming appearances for John ("Bo Duke") Schneider and Tom ("Luke Duke") Wopat of "The Dukes of Hazzard,"

Personal appearances

  • John and Tom Wopat will be in concert at the Island View Casino in Gulfport, Mississippi, on July 18 at 9 p.m. Eastern / 8 p.m. Central. Tickets may be purchased at Ticket Master,
  • John and Tom Wopat will be in concert at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis, Indiana, on August 14, at 7:30 p.m.
  • John and Tom Wopat will be in concert at John Schneider Studios in Holden, Louisiana, on December 12. 

John will be hosting a ghost tour in New Orleans on November 4 and a cruise that will leave from New Orleans and stop in Cozumel on November 5-9.  For more information call 225-665-7050.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: "Star Trek" Scotty figure by Diamond Select / EMCE

He's the security chief, the leader of those red-shirts that seemed to get beaned on whatever planet the landing party hits. He's the engineering chief who tries to keep the ship together while Kirk is trying whatever ploy he has to try to fool the aliens in that other ship. He's also the third in command aboard the Starship Enterprise, right after Spock and before Sulu. He's Scotty! And he's the inspiration for this Diamond Select / EMCE figure, for the third and final part of a special miniseries on Terrific TV Toys ...

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Two petitions to choose from to support "The Dukes of Hazzard"

Fans of "The Dukes of Hazzard" and fans of just plain common sense: Check out these two new petitions on One was started a week ago by Kathleen Cherry of New Jersey, while the other was started just two days ago by Don Covell Jr. of Michigan, our buddy "Cuz" in the "Dukes" world. The second petition has gotten more than 20,000 signatures in just the last 24 hours!!!! Sign them if you agree ...

Keep the Confederate Flag on "Dukes of Hazzard" Merchandise 

Stop Banning "The Dukes of Hazzard"

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: "Star Trek" Keeper figure by Diamond Select / EMCE

In the "Star Trek" universe, what is the "Keeper" the keeper of? Well, one Earth female, for one thing, a little creature whose beauty was definitely in the eye of the beholder! We know this from the original pilot of the original "Trek" series, "The Cage," as well as the two-part episode it later became, "The Menagerie." In the latest episode of the Terrific TV Toys series, we get a look at a figure that takes its name from the Keeper of those episodes, though it takes its looks from a different episode, "The Corbomite Maneuver." It's the second of a three-part story arc on reproductions of classic Mego "Star Trek" figures ...

Next week, the final part of the three takes us back into humanoid territory!

Monday, June 29, 2015

A blast from the past from Chad

Special thanks to our buddy Chad Fullerton of Georgia for sending along this photo that his dad Jim snapped several years ago in Covington, Georgia, when the restored Lee 1 car was unveiled on the Town Square in November 2006. That's this author, BRB, with John Schneider, aka Bo Duke, at the car's unveiling. It was such a fun time, as friends had driven from the North and tons of folks showed up for the event. Thanks so much, Chad and Jim!!!

Friday, June 26, 2015

History repeating itself with the General Lee's flag?

Wowzers, we sure have been embroiled in some controversy this week over that Confederate flag on the roof of the General Lee car that Bo and Luke Duke drove in "The Dukes of Hazzard." We've been seeing "Dukes" fans speak up about it all over the Internet. This author presented a case about the flag and its usage on the car (and how the Dukes didn't hate anybody) in the reference guide to the TV show, "Them Dukes! Them Dukes!" But the controversy continues. See this story from the other day, about the media's attempt to put down Ben ("Cooter Davenport") Jones and "The Dukes." We have to remind you of what happened a couple years back, when the WB made a move to remove the flag from "Dukes" merchandise. See our August 29, 2012 post for Ben Jones' words about it back then, then the follow-up from the WB on August 31.

To help put this into perspective, we offer the words of Will Rodgers, "The Voice of Hazzard" with his many wonderful voice impressions of "Dukes" characters. A co-author of the BRBTV Reports, Will posted his thoughts about the controversy on Facebook and allows them to be repeated here ...


As a first-generation and lifelong fan of "The Dukes of Hazzard," I am a proud supporter of the cast and crew, the cars, the music and everything the shows stands for. I love family-friendliness, the humor and the wholesome morals and values of the show. And like everyone else, I am extremely appalled and disgusted at Warner Bros.' decision to stop selling "Dukes" merchandise with the Confederate flag on it. The General Lee without the flag is like Batman without his cape and cowl or Popeye without his spinach. Unthinkable!! I am a proud supporter of Congressman Ben "Cooter" Jones and everything he has spoken about on the news regarding the Confederate flag and what the "Dukes" are all about. I am known in the Hazzard community as the Voice of Hazzard because of my voice impressions of the "Dukes" characters. Well, let my voice be heard. I have NEVER EVER thought of hate or racism when it comes to the Confederate flag. And I have never seen that on "The Dukes of Hazzard." So if these powers that be insist on this nonsense against selling "Dukes" merchandise without the flag, then thank the Good Lord I have General Lees with flags as well as the entire series uncut on DVD in case some other moronic mogul decides against airing the "Dukes" on TV. To "Cooter" Ben Jones, I'm proud to call you friend I'm behind you 100 percent in this fight to protect the flag. So says the Voice of Hazzard.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: "Star Trek" Andorian figure by Diamond Select / EMCE

In Episode 12 in the first season of the Terrific TV Toys series, Billie Rae Bates of BRBTV showed you some of her "Star Trek" Mego figures, both original and reproduction (just one repro, actually -- the cute little baby Klingon). Her collection is bigger than that, though, so for the 17th episode of Season 2, we bring you the first of a three-part series, rolling out more of the "Trek" figures. These three additional figures are all repros of Megos, and BRB will open them all on camera, for these "out of the box experiences." Part 1 is the adorable Andorian ...

Stay tuned, because next week's episode rolls out another alien, this time of some rather confusing vintage!!!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: Archie cars from Burger King Kids Meal

Yea, the hot purple sports car sure looks good on Veronica Lodge. And Betty Cooper in a '57 Chevy? We're thinking that fits, too, for this industrious occasional car mechanic. Jughead Jones in a green Volkswagen Bug? Hmmm ... But of course, there's Archie Andrews in the all-too-familiar red jalopy.

You can see this full set of four Kids Meal toys from Burger King's Kids Club, circa 1991, in the latest installment of Terrific TV Toys series. Billie Rae Bates of BRBTV had to eat a few kid-sized hamburgers to get these beauties, and it was well worth it. This was before eBay allowed us to nab vintage Archie collectibles that we'd missed from years past, and it was also before ever offered us a bevy of sparkling new merchandise featuring those timeless characters. So, in short, it was hard to find Archie stuff!

Friday, June 05, 2015

Everything was awesome at Awesome Con for the "Fantastic Forum"!

Wow, what a wonderful time it was at Awesome Con in downtown Washington, D.C., last weekend. The event, in its third year, was just as big as ever and took up the whole convention center this time. Billie Rae Bates of BRBTV did some more work for the "Fantastic Forum" TV show produced by Ulysses Campbell. Four episodes were taped on Saturday and Sunday of the show, with the convention floor bustling behind. Super cool! Watch for those episodes to air on these stations on the East Coast:
  • Manhattan Neighborhood Network, New York, NY; Time Warner Cable MNN Lifestyle channel 2
  • PhillyCam,  Philadelphia, PA; Comcast channel 66/966; Verizon FiOS channel 29/30.
  • MCM  Montgomery County, MD; Comcast channel 21; RCN channel 21; Verizon FiOS channel 21.
  • Arlington Independent Media (AIM), Arlington County, VA; Comcast channel 69; Verizon FiOS channel 38.
  • FPA-TV,  Fairfax County, VA; Cox channel 10.
  • DCTV, Washington, DC; Comcast channel 95; RCN channel 10; Verizon FiOS channel 10.
  • Prince George’s Community Television (CTV), Prince George’s County, MD; COMCAST channel 76; Verizon FiOS channel 42.
  • Community Media of Baltimore City (CMBC), Baltimore, MD; Comcast channel 75.
  • Herndon Community Television, Cox channel 23, Verizon FIOS channel 28.

Photos courtesy of Fantastic Forum; please do not copy without permission.

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Awesome Con: Allison Mack talks "Smallville"

Hummana-hummana ... How often do you hear a young female TV star say that? Well, we heard it this past weekend at the amazing Awesome Con in downtown Washington, D.C. The young female TV star in question was the continually lovely Allison Mack of "Smallville." Can you guess the context? You can see if you're right in our clips from her panel discussion on Saturday of the show, presented here as the latest installment on the BRBTV YouTube channel ...

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV
Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Check out "Dallas: The Ultimate Unofficial Fansite"

Thanks to our buddy Brian T.S. for tipping us off about this one as we chatted at the recent Motor City Comic Con in Novi, Michigan. Brian is a big fan of TV's "Dallas," and he sent this link to a rather astonishing site of fan fiction that encompasses not only the original "Dallas" series but the TNT reboot, as well.

It's billed as "The Ultimate Unofficial Fansite" of "Dallas," and it includes virtual casting of characters we didn't get to see on the TNT reboot show but that we know are out there, such as John Ross' sister (Kristen Storms, fashionista Maxinista of "General Hospital" in this casting -- so cool) and Lucas Wade, Bobby's son by Jenna. The fan fic "episodes" pick up where the TNT reboot so unfortunately left off. And that sister John Ross was asking Bum to track down at the end of the series isn't Cally's long-lost child, as we would have surmised, in this proposed continuity: She's the daughter of Kimberly Cryder. Hmmm .... Interesting. We haven't read too far into it, but the fan fic looks to be quite creative and well-done.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: The Motor City Comic Con Edition!

Wow, what a week it was last week, covering all kinds of great stuff at the 2015 Motor City Comic Con in Novi, Michigan. We would have been remiss if we hadn't visited the many, many vendor tables at this crowded convention hall to see just what kind of TV-show-related goodies they had for sale, particularly of the vintage variety. Thus is born the first ever episode of Terrific TV Toys series shot at a comic con ...

Friday, May 22, 2015

Motor City Comic Con: Glimpses and glances

BRBTV had a great time, as always, at this year's Motor City Comic Con at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Michigan. That show is never not a good time. All this week, we have shown you our chats with John Wesley Shipp, Dawn Wells and other great stars. We've got one more video coming that will round out our coverage of the event, but for today, how about a few random shots snapped around the convention hall of more of the celeb guests, to celebrate the fact that it's Friday once again ...

On Saturday afternoon, when actor Chandler Riggs of "The Walking Dead" (Carl Grimes) was brought to his table, it was with a barricade of sorts. And when he got into position, legions of fans swarmed around him, many of them young females with their cell cameras flashing, lifted high in the air to get a view from the masses. It was like a boy band had entered the convention hall.

On Friday afternoon, Gates McFadden (Dr. Beverly Crusher of "Star Trek: The Next Generation") and Terry Farrell (Jadzia Dax of "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine") held a panel. It was unfortunate that the panel Q and A couldn't be recorded, because man, did they dish. The two ladies look amazing, too.

Robert Englund of "Nightmare on Elm Street" fame had steady business at his table. We remember him well from a truly great movie version of "Phantom of the Opera" from the late '80s.

A "Dead of the 'Dead'" panel on Sunday afternoon featured several "Walking Dead" cast members whose characters have gone to the great beyond, including (from left) E. Roger Mitchell, Scott Wilson, Chad Coleman and Lawrence Gilliard Jr.

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV
Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Motor City Comic Con: Michael Welch talks "Z Nation"

So with a number of zombie-related TV shows out there right now, what makes Syfy's "Z Nation" different? Michael Welch, who plays Mack on the series, tells us, as he talks with Don Covell Jr. at last weekend's Motor City Comic Con ...

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Motor City Comic Con: Dawn Wells channels Mary Ann in her new book

We've talked with Dawn Wells before, and it's always a pleasure. She's just a nice gal. The one-time "Gilligan's Island" castaway now has a new book out, called "What Would Mary Ann Do?", and it's a sort of self-help compendium designed to help you navigate the rough waters of life. Wells tells us all about it, and she even answers BRB's truly girly questions about the fashions of Mary Ann ...

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Motor City Comic Con: Daniel Bonjour talks "Walking Dead"

Daniel Bonjour portrayed Aiden, son of the mayor of Alexandria, in this past season of AMC's "Walking Dead." He now joins the ranks of the "dead of the Dead." As our BRBTV coverage of the Motor City Comic Con continues, we offer you our chat with Bonjour about auditioning for his "Dead" role and what's coming up next for him ...

Monday, May 18, 2015

Motor City Comic Con: Michael Rowe talks "Arrow"

Michael Rowe has had the cool role of Floyd Lawton, aka Deadshot, on the CW's "Arrow." And just as his character seems to have an evolution of sorts, making some kind of weird piece with Diggle and the fact that he killed Diggle's brother, he goes and gets offed. But is anyone on "Arrow" ever really dead? Hmmm ... BRBTV had the opportunity to talk to Rowe at this past weekend's Motor City Comic Con about this role and what's coming up for him.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Motor City Comic Con: John Wesley Shipp talks to BRBTV about "The Flash" -- both old and new

We're big fans of continuity, here at BRBTV. That's one of the reasons we loved the new "Dallas" series, because it kept pretty heckin' good continuity with the original series, utilizing the same actors and making the characters (particularly those born during the original series) about the age they should be, in real time.

So as we've been watching the CW's "Flash" series, which just debuted this past fall, we've been chewing on a theory. It started when the CW show featured actress Amanda Pays in an episode a few weeks back. That's cool, we thought, they're paying tribute to the original "Flash" TV show that aired on CBS in 1990, in which she starred. But then we saw that she just happened to be playing the same character she played in that original "Flash" series, starring John Wesley Shipp. Hmmm. That's interesting. Couple that with the fact that the new "Flash" series also features John Wesley Shipp, and has from the beginning, as Barry Allen's dad, Henry.

OK, so then along comes the Trickster. Could this be a trick? Mark Hamill also reprising his role from the original series? Hold the phone. The Trickster kidnapped Henry Allen out of prison in that episode, and we were watching closely for every nuance between the two ... Was there some special back story there? Did the Trickster know him decades earlier? Are the show's producers going to tip their hand? And THEN (wait, there's more), the same actor who played Officer Tony Bellows in the 1990 series, Vito D'Ambrosio, shows up in the 2014 series, as Mayor Anthony Bellows. OK, now they're just messin' with us. Seriously.

We're not the only ones who are wandering down this speculation path, as John Wesley Shipp tells BRBTV in this interview, fresh off the presses, from today's Motor City Comic Con at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Michigan ...

Monday, May 11, 2015

Burt Reynolds talks "Smokey and the Bandit" and more

Many thanks to our fellow author Brian Lombard, who kindly shares his experience (and photo) with us after meeting Burt Reynolds at an appearance in Philadelphia this past weekend. Us fans of "The Dukes of Hazzard" know Reynolds for not only the references to him during the series' run but also his portrayal of Boss Hogg in the "Dukes" remake movie in 2005 ...

I went to his panel session and got to ask him a question. I asked him to clear up an urban legend regarding "Smokey and the Bandit" Part 3. The film, as released, features Jackie Gleason as Smokey, and Jerry Reed, a sidekick character in the first two movies, playing “The Bandit.” Reynolds did not appear in the film. The legend, though, is that the film was originally shot with Gleason playing BOTH title roles, Smokey and the Bandit, but that test audiences didn’t like it all. To this day, no one involved in the production will confirm this setup, possibly out of embarrassment, but there is enough evidence that has survived, including this trailer released a year before the movie came out. Note that it gives the title “Smokey IS the Bandit.”

So I asked Burt if the legend was true. I’m paraphrasing his reply:

“I didn’t want to do a third one. I had had enough of the series. And they couldn’t get Sally (Fields) to come back, either. She was doing other projects. But the studio wanted to do it. And whenever Jackie Gleason is in a scene with someone else, the other person isn’t really there anyway.”

I was about the third or fourth questioner, and no one had yet said anything about Boss Hogg. I started my question by first saying I loved him in the part, which got a round of applause from the audience.

During the panel, I also learned that his favorite film (why is that question ALWAYS asked?) is "Deliverance," but he also likes "Sharkey’s Machine," which he directed. His favorite person to work with was Frank Sinatra in "The Cannonball Run." One fan asked him about the film he did with Dolly Parton, “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.” The questioner asked, quite shockingly, where Reynolds came down on the issue of legalized prostitution. To say you could hear a pin drop in the room would be an understatement. Reynolds would only offer that he had mixed emotions on the subject, suggesting that he was in favor of it, but he wouldn’t definitively say one way or the other.

Friday, May 08, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: Superhero bean bag plush from the Warner Bros. Studio Stores

Ooooh, we love that it's Friday once again. Thank the Lord! And today, this means another episode of the Terrific TV Toys series. We're staying on the DC superhero theme, having looked at the "Batman: The Animated Series" Happy Meal toys last week. This time, it's a set of bean bag plush celebrating that animated TV show and its several spinoffs -- "Superman: The Animated Series," "Justice League" and more. These are the characters you love, in all their squeezable glory, from a collection dating 1998-2000.

Monday, May 04, 2015

We're thankful for the message of sweet Grace Lee Whitney

She was one of the first celebs this author met and interviewed, more than 15 years ago, while I was working for The Detroit News. She was kind, smart, effervescent, happy to be alive, having survived much. And really, her claim to fame all these years since "Star Trek" originally aired has been as the the turned-out "Trek" cast member, the one who was fired in a bit of disgrace for something she didn't do, the victim of a sexual assault. I've always had my own theory about who that high-ranking unnamed production exec was, but the more important thing is the message Grace Lee Whitney carried later in life, not in her earlier "Trek" days. Her most important message was as a recovering addict, which she wrote about in her autobiography, "The Longest Trek: My Tour of the Galaxy." I reviewed that book for "The Detroit News," then for the Amazon listing, as I was greatly affected by it. I loved what she wrote about her time in Detroit. So direct and unafraid, she even detailed a hit-and-run accident she was involved in on Grand River Avenue. To put it all out there, not fearing what people will think of you, because you think it's important and it will help someone, was a trait in Grace Lee Whitney that I greatly admired.

Whitney has died at age 85. ABC News and Chicago Tribune have more.

Whitney's book is smashing for its message of healing and recovery (it takes years to "cook" an alcoholic, she wrote -- I'll never forget that concept, as it has proved true in a lot of the people I've met), and the writing truly reflects the actress as I saw her, strong, capable, forgiving, resilient. When I first met her in person, having spoken to her on the phone a time or two, she greeted me with a warm hug and spoke with a low, almost-hoarse voice, the latter an irony that seemed to want to belie her sweet demeanor. (She told me the red-dress-clad "Star Trek" Barbie doll released at about that same time -- late 1990s -- was styled after her Janice Rand character -- loved that boldness.) But what she was most concerned about, at that point, more than any trip around the galaxy, was helping others with addiction. She was 17 years sober at the time, quite a feat.

She was kind enough to mail me the above signed picture, after I interviewed her, and it hangs on the wall of my Batcave downstairs. Thanks, Ms. Whitney, for doing more than embracing stardom -- for seeing it as a means to help others.

Friday, May 01, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: "Batman: The Animated Series" Happy Meal toys

The Joker uses his battering ram on Batman. Robin takes off on his cool red cycle. Two-Face turns his car from white to black. Ooooh, the possibilities are endless with the set of eight McDonald's Happy Meal toys in the 1993 collection celebrating "Batman: The Animated Series." It was the early days of this landmark cartoon, just the year following its debut, and the folks at Warner Bros. already knew they had a hit on their hands. So why wouldn't us rabid Batfans clamor to our local McDonald's to grab these up? You get an up-close-and-personal look at each of the eight toys in the latest installment of the Terrific TV Toys series.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: "Charlie's Angels" dolls and fashions by Hasbro

For all you doll collectors out there, we're getting uber-geeky once again, in this latest episode of the Terrific TV Toys series. You thought you saw a little girl playing with her dolls in the Cher episode, wait 'til you see this. And in the same way you saw every one of those luscious fashions in the Cher ep, as well as in the Jaime Sommers episode, you're going to see it all in living color in this episode on the Hasbro dolls that celebrated the classic "Charlie's Angels" TV show. The satin gauchos. The filmy pink pegnoir set. The scuba-diving set. The truly amazing skateboard. These Angels were quite stylin' as they were out solving cases for the Townsend Agency.

It's all there -- every accessory Billie Rae Bates of BRBTV had as a little girl growing up in the '70s (minus one pink shoe -- rats). These dolls allowed little girls everywhere to dream of being a Charlie's Angel. Please enjoy this latest installment in the series ...

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: Batgirl Cycle by Eaglemoss

Vroom-vroom goes the Batcycle -- the lovely lavender Batgirl Cycle, that is, as ridden by Yvonne Craig on the classic live-action "Batman" TV series! When fans think of this purple-clad version of Batgirl, they definitely remember that bike. It was iconic for the third season of the 1960s series, and it debuted just as Craig herself debuted on the show -- in the very first episode of that third season. She had to watch out for the wily Penguin in the storyline, and didn't we just love the strains of her special theme song as she rode that Batgirl Cycle. "Batgirrrrrrl ... Batgirl!!!"

We're in episode 11 of this second season of the Terrific TV Toys series, and this time around, Billie Rae Bates of BRBTV takes you for a spin on her own copy of Eaglemoss' 1:43 scale Batgirl Cycle. This is what we call an "out-of-the-box experience" on the T3 series. If you have the item and you're keeping it pristine in the package, you can still have that experience of opening it and touching it -- virtually!