Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: Batman with removable cowl by Figures Toy Co.

We're not a huge fan of variants here at BRBTV (well, at least this author isn't -- maybe my co-author Will is!). Figures Toy Co. has been churning them out, along with the new figures, as part of its line celebrating the 1966 "Batman" TV series. Some of them you'll see on the Terrific TV Toys series, and some you won't. But because our procurement chief Mike tends to procure these figures in the full sets of four, we really couldn't beg off this particular variant the way we were able to with an earlier series that had not one but two variants. If three out of four figures in the series is a new one, and only one is a variant, then weeeelllll ... guess you gotta go and buy the whole series and not break it up, right?

Anyway ... after that long diatribe, we present to you this week's Terrific TV Toy ... the Batman figure with removable cowl from FTC's Series 5, not to be confused with the straight-up Batman figure from their first series, or the "Surf's Up" variant Batman, or even the Batman with different head sculpt from Series 3 that we didn't buy ... sigh ...

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Sometimes you find General Lees in surprising places

One "Dukes of Hazzard" fan we know can't seem to go too far without bumping into something "Dukes"! Our roving reporter Jason, who drives truck cross-country, sent us these photos of what's billed to be a screen-used General Lee in Murdo, South Dakota, originally built by Ray Claridge of Hollywood's Cinema Vehicles for the show.

"This place was featured on 'American Pickers,'" Jason tells BRBTV. "I remember the episode. It is some kind of barn. I regret that I was there just for the General. There is just way too much to see in an hour. This place is way, way out in the middle of nowhere. GPS can't find it. I just happened to see a billboard and it happened to be the same exit the truck stop was at. Even better it was directly across the street!"

But Jason has his doubts about the General (and hey, comment below if you know more!). "The store employee said the car has a 340 engine," Jason says. "That is what makes me think it's not a real one. The 340 was not in those years of Chargers."

"There was just way too much to see in the time I gave myself," Jason says. "There is a ton of things in there besides cars. A lot of the cars are in disrepair because you can tell they've been sitting for a very long time. Also some of the buildings they were in were dilapidated; it was hard to get pics because everything was crammed together. They have everything from apple peelers to Zippos."

Thanks, Jason, for sharing this little "Dukes" adventure with us!

Photos by Jason G.; please do not copy without permission.

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Congratulations to Jim and Leslie -- it was a "Dukes of Hazzard" wedding!

What a nice weekend, and what a nice time in the Great White North -- Ontario, specifically -- for a wedding, "Dukes of Hazzard" style. Congratulations to Jim and Leslie on their nuptials, and we just had to offer you a glimpse of the d├ęcor. So fun! These are hard-core fans of our beloved "Dukes."

We profiled Jim and his art in our posts on March 29, 2013, January 28, 2015 and October 15, 2015, and it was added to the "Them Dukes! Them Dukes" fact book. His friend Jason, whose art we also profiled in 2013, supplied the General Lee for this event (a culmination of many years of work on the car). There was also a Cooter's tow truck in attendance, as well as a Boss Hogg Caddy (owned by friend Rob) and a Hazzard County Sheriff's car (owned by friend Paul).

The cake was simply amazing ...

This author with the happy couple!

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV

Sunday, October 02, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: Wonder Woman Barbie doll by Mattel

Mattel has made a few different Wonder Woman Barbie dolls over the years. The 1999 model you'll see profiled in the latest episode of Terrific TV Toys takes a classic approach to her costume -- even with a luscious, red-white-and-blue satin cape that will have you thinking about Lynda Carter in her iconic 1970s role. In fact, though this lovely lady is not a TV-related toy on paper, we still tie it in to that classic superhero series. We can't help ourselves!

Friday, September 30, 2016

"Dynasty" reboot in the works at the CW

Wow! We've heard rumors for years, but it's nice to see something a tad more concrete in print. Thanks to our buddy Brian for the heads-up on this one: The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that a reboot of our beloved "Dynasty" is in the works at the CW network.

The plotline has Fallon Carrington front-and-center in this new take. Hmmm ... Does that mean Fallon is assuming her mother's throne, so to speak, as resident conniving bad gal? And is there any hope of either of the original actresses, Pamela Sue Martin or Emma Samms, reprising the role? And in general, will this one follow the model of TNT's "Dallas" reboot in bringing the original cast on, too, while mixing in new faces? We would love that. Continuity is king, with many fans!

Friday, September 23, 2016

A dazzling "Dynasty" gown collection continues to grow ...

In this July 2015 post, we showed you the amazing costume collection of a diehard "Dynasty" fan. Well, that same fan has acquired a couple more lovely pieces and is graciously sharing his photos once again. He's also thrown in some shots of the ladies who originally wore these amazing pieces ...

Do you have your own collection of "Dynasty" goodies to share? Contact us at brb@brbtv.com, or comment below! We'd love to see what you have!

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

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Con: Russ McCubbin talks about his time on the "Dukes" and more

Russ McCubbin must be a VIP at his local Wendy's -- he's got a burger named after him there! We learned about that and more as we chatted with him at last weekend's Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Con in Hunt Valley, Maryland. We often like to hear what a day-in-the-life is like for some of these actors we talk to, and we get some interesting answers!

McCubbin has starred in a lot of great TV over the years -- "Matt Houston," "Adam-12," "Daniel Boone" -- but what this author wanted to ask him about was his episode of "The Dukes of Hazzard." It was "The Ghost of the General Lee," definitely a favorite with a lot of the fans we've talked to, and his character was Phil, who stole the General Lee ...

To learn more about the actor or for signed photos, check out his official site.

Monday, September 19, 2016

A peek at the fun Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Con

Another weekend, another cool show. This author ventured to the Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention in Hunt Valley, Maryland, once again this year and had a nice time. Here's a glimpse ...

This was the third and final day of the show, and things were still hoppin'. Stars of classic TV and movies, authors and others were chatting it up, and the shopping was good, as usual! We spotted lots of fun TV-related toys and other tempting stuff ...

Robert Conrad, who was James West on "Wild, Wild West," was there to greet fans, above, as was Robert Fuller of "Emergency" and "Laramie," below. The lines for both these guys were loooooonnnggg. We could've guessed that about our dreamy Jim West, but Fuller's popularity surprised at least one vendor we talked to, since these exhibitors aim to bring a selection of merchandise to complement the event's guest lineup. This vendor's Fuller stuff sold right out!

Above, a kind and lively "Blues Brother" and vendor who sold this chick the "Dallas" pictorial coffeetable book by Laura Van Wormer for just a buck. Rock on, dude!

Look for more from the show later this week -- an interview with Russ McCubbin about his time on "The Dukes of Hazzard"!

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

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Heroes and Icon TV -- rivaling MeTV as best network EVER with its fall lineup!

Ooooh, we knew there was something about this TV network we liked ... We only discovered it by flipping through the channels and occasionally seeing some cool show airing on it. Knew nothing about it whatsoever, except that it seemed to be airing classic TV shows. So now, Heroes and Icons TV rolls out a fall schedule that knocks our socks off!

"The Green Hornet," airing again??? Sign us up! "Star Trek: The Animated Series"? Meow!!! "Sheena" and "Xena," together on one schedule??? Bonus!!!


Learn more at H&I's website.

Friday, September 09, 2016

Announcing "Let's Roll, Kato: A Guide to TV's Green Hornet" !!!

Two blog posts in one day!!?? Why yes, when it's such a big TV anniversary week! BRBTV is happy to announce a new entry in its product line this week, the culmination of a research project that began a couple years back after an interview with the very kind and gracious Mr. Van Williams, and it's now timed with the 50th anniversary of "The Green Hornet" TV show ...

"Let's Roll, Kato: A Guide to TV's Green Hornet" is the latest in the BRBTV fact book series, and it's an in-depth examination of the show that aired on ABC in the 1966-67 TV season. Though this was a series that ran only one season, you just wouldn't believe the information and fandom that exists on it to this day. It was, after all, the series that launched Bruce Lee's acting career. But this show -- 26 serious-toned, half-hour episodes -- certainly struck a chord with fans. This author talked to several of those fans, along with writers and artists who have been inspired by the series, plus other cast and crew members -- as many as we could find, for a show that's half a century old!

You'll find all sorts of goodies in this one:

  • A history of the development of the series, as well as background on each of the principal stars
  • Cast list and character guide
  • Episode synopses, plus background on the storylines and scripts
  • A look at the Black Beauty car, with input from owners of both screen-used and replica vehicles
  • A listing of the many gadgets used by the Hornet, both inside the car and out
  • An in-depth look at the books and comics that sprung from the series, with input from the writers and artists who helped produce them
  • Detailed guide to the vast and varied merchandise celebrating the series, with plenty of photos (color in this Kindle edition!)

With beautiful cover art by Baltimore artist Dale Cuthbertson, “Let’s Roll, Kato” is jam-packed -- this e-edition clocks in at the equivalent of 435 letter-sized pages in Microsoft Word (648 pages by Kindle count)!

Snag it exclusively on Amazon's Kindle platform, readable on any device! And look for a print edition of "Let's Roll, Kato" next year ...

HAPPY 50th TV ANNIVERSARY, "GREEN HORNET"!!!! We celebrate with a special anniversary episode of Terrific TV Toys!

It's the second part of this week's double-header for Terrific TV Toys, and it's another 50th anniversary ... It's the "Green Hornet" TV show that debuted on September 9, 1966, as a sort of companion series to the popular "Batman" on ABC. Produced by the same company, "The Green Hornet" presented another crimefighter in disguise, but one with an edge, posing as a criminal in his dark-green mask and trenchcoat. This series also launched the career of martial arts legend Bruce Lee, who starred as Kato alongside Van Williams' Britt Reid.

Today T3 celebrates that big milestone! The series only lasted a season, but it's beloved by many and joined the ranks of other great shows rising from radio series, such as the Lone Ranger, who was created by the same folks and is actually a relative of the Green Hornet.

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

Thursday, September 08, 2016

HAPPY 50th ANNIVERSARY, "STAR TREK"!!!! We celebrate with a special anniversary episode of Terrific TV Toys!

It may seem hard to believe that 50 years ago today the original "Star Trek" series first debuted on network TV, introducing the world to what would become a pop-cultural behemoth. September 8, 1966 was the date that Captain Kirk, Spock, Dr. McCoy, Scotty, Sulu, Uhura and the crew took on "The Man Trap" and set us off on an adventure that hopefully will never end! If any television show would seem to live on forever, it would definitely be "Star Trek," with so many big-screen movies, spinoff series, merchandise, cosplaying and general all-around fandom in the five decades hence.

The Terrific TV Toys series celebrates this half-century mark today with a special episode. In it, we look at an anniversary toy for "Trek," but not for its 50th anniversary -- for its 30th in 1996. This cute little Vina figure commemorates Susan Oliver's performance as that green Orion slave girl in the original pilot episode, "The Cage," as well as the first-season two-partner, "The Menagerie."

This T3 episode is actually the first part of a double-header this week ... hmmmm ... what other great classic television show celebrates a half-century mark this week? Find out tomorrow ...

Friday, August 26, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: '66 Barbara Gordon "Surf's Up" variant figure by Figures Toy Co.

Ooooohhh, that lovely lady ... We're talking about Yvonne Craig as Ms. Barbara Gordon on the 1960s "Batman" series. She came along in the third season as Barbara / Batgirl, and the geek world was never the same.

As part of their larger collection focusing on the classic TV series, Figures Toy Co. has already crafted a Barbara Gordon figure and a Batgirl figure (about time they rolled out some females!), but what you see in this week's episode of Terrific TV Toys is a variant of the Barbara figure as one of a special foursome commemorating the third-season "Surf's Up" episode. Grab your surfboard!

Coming up in September: Two very special episodes celebrating the 50th anniversary of two different classic series! Can you guess which two?

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

John Schneider hosts concert to benefit Louisiana flood victims

Thanks to Phyllis for passing along this press release ...


Branson, MO – John Schneider (Bo Duke of "The Dukes of Hazzard") will be hosting a benefit concert at 7 p.m. on Sunday, August 28 at the Starlite Theater in Branson, Missouri. Schneider will be joined in this performance event by local entertainers Jason Pritchett and The Steel Horses, as well as Johnny Lee to raise funds to support Louisiana flood victims.

In a statement issued on Monday, John Schneider said, “I am very excited about going back to Branson! I haven’t been there to perform in over 30 years, [and] there has been a big hole in my soul where Branson used to be.”

City of Branson Mayor Best added “I am very excited to welcome my old friend, John, back to Branson, and I am humbled by his outpouring of support to victims of these tragic circumstances.”

Schneider relates to the loss experienced by his Louisiana neighbors, having two studios heavily damaged by previous floods. While his success afforded him the opportunity to rebuild, his heart goes out to those less fortunate who are unable to fund a new beginning after losing everything.

In addition to the concert, a silent auction will be held, offering a variety of items to be sold to the highest bidder. Area businesses interested in donating items to support this fundraising effort are asked to contact event coordinator, Tina Richardson at 417-335-1707 or by email at tslay23@yahoo.com.

The cost of admission is by donation, with suggested minimum of $20 per ticket. Doors open at 6 p.m. The money raised will be given to Convoy of Hope to extend to flood victims.

This event has been made possible by the generosity of Convoy of Hope along Starlite Theater, Summerwinds Resorts, HCW, and Clear Entertainment and Marketing Group.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: '66 Chief O'Hara "Surf's Up" variant figure by Figures Toy Co.

You know, Chief O'Hara is a crimefighter, too! He may not have a flashy disguise like Batman, but in this week's episode of Terrific TV Toys, you'll see that he does have a pretty crafty disguise, anyway! In the third-season episode "Surf's Up, Joker's Under" of the classic '60s "Batman," Chief O'Hara and Commissioner Gordon go to Gotham Point beach in their disguises to investigate the disappearance of a renowned surfer. O'Hara, ever the faithful law enforcement officer, even has a surfboard in tow to make it look really good. It's the third figure in a set of four by Figures Toy Co. celebrating this particular episode ...

Next week: At last, a girl figure in this set!!!!

Friday, August 12, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: '66 Joker "Surf's Up" variant figure by Figures Toy Co.

Whoever knew green paisley could look so good? Cesar Romero donned some goofy swim trunks -- over his magenta Joker costume, of course -- for the third-season "Surf's Up, Joker's Under" episode of TV's classic "Batman" series, so by necessity the Figures Toy Co. action figure of him must follow suit! (So to speak!) This week on Terrific TV Toys, we show you this variant Joker figure from the set of four celebrating this beachside episode ...

Next week: Chief O'Hara's got a surfboard, too, even if he doesn't use it!

Friday, August 05, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: '66 Batman "Surf's Up" variant figure by Figures Toy Co.

We've gone from a smokin-hot July into a smoldering August. Ain't summer grand? Yea, actually, we love it. This week we're hanging at the Bat-Beach on Terrific TV Toys -- for the next few weeks, actually. We're examining, up-close and personal, the set of four variant figures by Figures Toy Co. made especially for the "Surf's Up, Joker's Under" episode of the third season of the 1960s "Batman" TV series.

Our ole Bat-Buddy is the first one up of the four; stay tuned next week for Joker!

Friday, July 29, 2016

Terrific TV Toys on Wheels: The Mystery Machine!

We'll celebrate the closing of July with another installment in Terrific TV Toys on Wheels, a sort of subseries to our regular show, Terrific TV Toys. This comes from an event earlier this month, the Fourth of July parade in Northville, Michigan, where a replica of a very recognizable TV star car made its debut, to the cheers of a bazillion little kids who certainly know their Scooby!

It's the Mystery Machine, fresh out of the shop with a brand-new paint job and some mechanical work, and it really rode the parade in style! In fact, it even had a very huge stuffed Scooby-Doo in tow that you'll recognize if you've seen other episodes of the T3 series. That's Buckzilla right there in the front seat with BRB of BRBTV, cosplaying Daphne Blake, and her hunky driver! You can call him Fred!

Stay tuned ... Next week, T3 continues the Bat-Blitz of 2016 with a special variant series by Figures Toy Co.!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: J.R. Ewing ornament by Hallmark

That ole J.R. Ewing ... he sure can wheel and deal himself in and out of any situation, can't he? Well, can he also finagle himself a prime spot on your Christmas tree this holiday season? Hallmark is hoping so, because they just released a Keepsake Ornament featuring that scion of Southfork Ranch, and it's the subject of this week's episode of Terrific TV Toys.

The firm figurehead of the classic primetime soap "Dallas" is perched right there on this ornament, in all his glory, and he'll play the theme music from "Dallas," to boot, when you push the button on his base! See this brand-new Hallmark ornament, just hitting stores this month, up-close and personal ...

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: '66 Alfred figure by Figures Toy Co.

He can dust like nobody's business, and he's very good at telling Bruce and Dick -- in code when Aunt Harriet is around -- that the Batphone is ringing. He's Alfred, and his faithful service at stately Wayne Manor is a thing of beauty. His action figure by Figures Toy Co. is rather lovely, too, and it's the subject of this week's episode of the Terrific TV Toys series. It rounds out series 4 from the company ...

Next week, we return to Southfork Ranch for a special "Christmas in July" ...

Monday, July 11, 2016

Check out the trailer for John Schneider's new film, streaming on Thursday

We've always known our Bo Duke had talent. We watch John Schneider dominate his scenes on Tyler Perry's "The Haves and the Have Nots" each week on OWN right now, but of course, back in the day on "The Dukes of Hazzard" he thrilled female hearts everywhere with his talent and charisma. Schneider is making movies these days out of a studio in Louisiana, inspired by folks like Perry, and his latest, "Like Son," is being released online on Thursday.

We just watched the trailer, and we have to applaud Schneider if for nothing other than the quest to produce a film that actually says something and doesn't feel obligated to just flash a bunch of pretty 20-somethings at us like so many other movies these days. We don't necessarily need the eye candy, and some of us moviegoers want to feel something and learn more about ourselves as human beings. This one looks good, and this author will definitely watch it.

You can catch the trailer now on the official "Like Son" website, and stream the movie in a few days.

Friday, July 08, 2016

Terrific TV Toys: '66 King Tut figure by Figures Toy Co.

"How'd ya get so funky???? Must've done the Monkey ..." 

If you know what that comes from, we're scared for you. And if you don't, well, just Google this guy named Steve Martin ...

Anyway, we know how popular King Tut has been over the years. Egypt's boy king whose tomb was discovered in 1922 has always intrigued us in the modern culture. And King Tut was the inspiration for a villain created just for the 1960s "Batman" TV series starring Adam West. This portly patriarch was portrayed by Victor Buono, and to great effect. This week's installment of the Terrific TV Toys series shows you the action figure for this character crafted by Figures Toy Co. as part of series 4 of their collection for the show. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

"Arrow" and "Flash" stars converge on Heroes and Villains con in New York

Many thanks once again to guest blogger Brian Lombard, filing this fab report from the field after meeting cast members from a couple of our favorite shows this past weekend at the Heroes and Villains Fan Fest ...

While many Americans were spending the holiday weekend in their backyards or at baseball games, fans of the TV series’ “Arrow” and “Flash” descended on the Big Apple for the Heroes and Villains convention. Both casts were well represented, and they were joined by actors from their sister shows “Gotham” and “Legends of Tomorrow.” I love all of these shows, so my attendance was a foregone conclusion.

I always love the opportunity to get a star’s autograph, and this convention offered plenty of opportunities for that. First on my list was Neal McDonough, known in the “Arrowverse” as the evil Damien Darhk. I’ve been a fan of his since I saw him get assimilated by the Borg back in “Star Trek: First Contact,” but I always like to ask the stars about their lesser-known roles. Or at least ones that aren’t generally asked about at sci-fi conventions. With that mind, I asked him about “Walking Tall,” a film he made with Duane “The Rock” Johnson in 2004.

“That was fun,” McDonough said. “Duane is such a nice guy and we just had so much fun making that movie.”

Remembering that Damien Darkh seems to have an extraordinarily long life span, I asked McDonough just how old he’s supposed to be anyway.

“158,” he quipped, with a wink in his eye.

Next up was John Barrowman, perennial villain/ally/villain Malcolm Merlyn. Before “Arrow,” Barrowman made his name in the “Doctor Who” spin-off “Torchwood,” a series I know nothing about. I noticed he was wearing a Superman ring on his finger, and I decided to comment on that instead.

“Nice ring, Mr. Barrowman.”

“Thank you. You don’t know how many people like my ring ….. Brian" (reading my name on the post it note).

“Well, I didn’t want to bore you with another 'Arrow' question you’ve heard before.”

“Not at all. I’m just delighted I could throw a double entendre at you and it went right over your head.”

Nervous chuckle. “Thanks, Mr. Barrowman. I really enjoy the show.”

The other thing I like about these shows is the opportunity we get to have our photos taken with the stars. Budget be damned, there were two I simply had to have – Danielle Panabaker, aka Caitlyn Snow from “The Flash,” and a duo shot with “Arrow’s” Stephen Amell and David Ramsey. Unlike many conventions I’ve been to in the past, the photo sessions were very well-run and efficient. The lines moved very quickly and I had my prints in less than a minute. That said, you have to respect the actor’s time, and not bog them down during this process.

Once the photo ops were over, I went back for a few more autographs. I’m a big fan of Captain Lance, so I made my way to meet his alter ego, Paul Blackthorne. He was away doing his own photo ops at the time, so I was now first in his line, which quickly grew and grew. Fortunately we didn’t have too long to wait.

When he returned, I introduced myself and he thanked me for coming. He seemed the jovial type, so I asked him if Captain Lance was planning to attend any more of his daughters’ funerals next season (two girls with three funerals between them). He had a laugh at that, and said “God, I hope not. I don’t think his heart could take it. Been down that road too many times!”

I thanked him and quickly moved on to my final get of the day, Willa Holland, aka Thea Queen, aka Speedy. I met her, I got her autograph, and it was all very impersonal.

All in all, a fantastic convention.

Brian Lombard, shown above with Stephen Amell and David Ramsey, is quite fond of television both classic and modern. Check out his book "Bradypalooza: The Unauthorized Guide to TV's Favorite Family" on Amazon.

Photos courtesy of Brian Lombard;
please do not copy without permission.