Monday, November 28, 2011

Announcing the BRBTV Report on "Superman: The Animated Series"

A couple weeks ago, we introduced you to the voice prowess of our buddy Will Rodgers, who's known among his friends as "The Voice Man." We've seen him demonstrate his talent for voice impersonation at various events over the years, so we put him on tape for you to enjoy, too!

Now, while Will can do a great verbal take on many of the characters of our beloved "Dallas," "The Dukes of Hazzard" and more,  he has a talent for capturing these characters in the printed word, as well! He's the creator of the site, "Will's Ultimate Guide Super Friends Episode Guide!" for one thing, and it's really a comprehensive look at a beloved classic superhero show. As a writer, Will  has a keen grasp of detail, and he has a love for the same shows BRB loves. Thus, a reference guide collaboration was born!

The first one out of the gate from this collaboration is a tribute to the late-'90s show "Superman: The Animated Series." BRBTV is delighted to announce this new addition to our Reports series, focusing on what was basically a spinoff of the wildly popular "Batman: The Animated Series" of the earlier '90s by Bruce Timm and Co. of Warner Bros. Animation.

“Superman: TAS” proved faithful to the famous Superman mythos originally created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster and so well-explored in many pop culture media over the decades, from other animated series to live-action TV series and theatrical movies, to newspaper and radio and of course, the printed comic-book page. This new series took Superman / Clark Kent, Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, Lex Luthor, Perry White and many, many more of the well-known characters and gave them a fresh look and fresh appeal, all keeping to the style of “B:TAS.” The half-hour animated series encompassed three seasons on the Kids WB! from 1996 to 2000, contributing a few of its own unique elements to the enduring Superman mythos along the way.

Like the others in the series, this BRBTV Report delivers up a magazine-length feature story examining the history and impact of this TV show. In addition to the feature story, you’ll see Will's own fun, original episode synopses, along with a cast list for the show. It's all in a convenient, portable, Kindle format with photos appearing in color where available.

It's the meatiest BRBTV Report so far -- the equivalent of 87 letter-sized pages (the episode synopses Will writes are much heftier and more robust than BRB's, actually)! AND ... like the rest of the BRBTV Reports, the price is low: this time a cool $2.99. Less than a comic book, less than a magazine, and yours to keep fo-ever and ever ...

We hope you enjoy this latest Report. And stay tuned to this channel, we've got two more Reports coming close on the heels of this one ...

Friday, November 25, 2011

Get ready to bid: General Lee 13, one of Alexis' gowns, Wonder Woman's lasso and more!

Boy, is it a good time to have some money to throw around, some space in the den, and a love for classic TV. Profiles in History’s “Icons of Hollywood” movie and television prop auction is coming up fast. And among the offerings for your bidding pleasure are nice splashes of "The Dukes of Hazzard," "Dynasty" and "Wonder Woman."

The “Icons of Hollywood” auction is being held December 15-16 at The Paley Center for Media, 465 North Beverly Drive, Beverly Hills, California. The auction consists of 1,209 lots with original props, costumes, artwork, photography, and more from Hollywood’s history.

PDF catalogs are now available for download at Profiles in History site, so you can see all the goodies available, but here are some highlights that will whet your appetite:
  • A vibrant purple gown from "Dynasty": a three-button jacket with fur sleeves and long skirt, of deep plum velvet, worn by Joan Collins as Alexis Carrington Colby in the Season 5 episode “The Heiress.” And, the catalog notes, "It features Velcro closure to allow Michael Nader 'Dex Dexter' to rip it open and ravish Collins on her bed in one of the sexiest moments in TV history." Wowzers.
  • Lasso, first-season bracelets and $2 bill from "Wonder Woman": The lasso was for throwing  (not one of the ones attached to her outfit), and the $2 bill was the one kissed by the actress, Lynda Carter, during the first-season episode "Last of the Two-Dollar Bills."
  • Jail sign from "The Dukes of Hazzard": Aluminum sign measures 16 by 24 inches and is painted in black letters, “Hazzard County Jail Sheriff Roscoe P. Coltrane.”
  • Screen General Lee #13 (SGL 13) from "The Dukes of Hazzard": OK, now we're getting to a big ticket item. See page 134 of the first PDF catalog. We've gotta email one of our "Dukes" buddies and see just who's car this is ... there are certainly a few interesting clues in the description ...

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Spotted: John Beck and Sorrell Booke

OK, so, we were all settled in, on our nice un-comfy couch, with a fresh DVD from our bud Tracy all queued up ... and what name do we see on the screen as the opening credits roll for this classic film?

Sorrell Booke????

Really? Sorrell Booke????

OK, John Beck didn't surprise us. Our former Mark Graison of "Dallas" and David Raymond of "Santa Barbara" had a prolific career through the '70s and '80s, and the two aforementioned favorites weren't his only forays on the soapy side, for sure. But Sorrell Booke? Our beloved J.D. Hogg of "The Dukes of Hazzard"?

Yes, indeed. With a bare (hairy) back in a sex scene, no less. (Seriously.) What's the movie, you're now dying to know? Sidney Sheldon's "The Other Side of Midnight," 1977.

Booke is Lanchon, a French businessman with a stern accent who cuts a deal in Marseilles to wed the lead character, Marie-France Pisier's Noelle Page. She's none too happy about the arrangement, and she quickly escapes him, only to fall into the arms of someone far more treacherous, Beck's Larry Douglas.

Beck is a scoundrel in this film, but he's such a straight-up scoundrel that you really have to wonder if he at all realizes he's doing anything wrong as he loves 'em and leaves 'em and generally deceives his way through the storyline as a military pilot in this World War II setting. He delivers his treachery with the ever-honest look and stance (and charm, of course) of a Mark Graison or a David Raymond. Reprehensible? Yes. Delusional? We're thinkin' so.

Though the movie was considered a flop at the box office, it gave Beck a great, meaty, leading role. And Booke? Well, we knew the guy was multitalented. This one definitely shows another one of Boss Hogg's many facets as an actor.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Robin Wright: "Rampart," "Dragon Tattoo" and more

It's a regular Robin Wright roundup here on the BRBTV News Blog. Our lovely original Kelly Capwell of "Santa Barbara" has lots of movie stuff goin' awn ...

"Rampart," in which she stars with Woody Harrelson, Ice Cube and Sigourney Weaver, has release dates of November 23, 2011 in New York and Los Angeles, and January 27, 2012 elsewhere in the U.S. The movie "explores the dark soul and romantic misadventures of a never-changing LAPD cop (Harrelson) whose past is finally catching up with him in the wake of a department-wide corruption scandal," according to promotional materials.

Along the way, he is forced to confront his disgruntled daughters (Brie Larson, Sammy Boyarsky), his two ex-wives (Anne Heche, Cynthia Nixon), a tenacious deputy DA (Weaver), an investigator on his trail (Ice Cube), a homeless witness to his crimes (Ben Foster), his aging mentor (Ned Beatty) and a mysterious new lover who may or may not be on his side (Robin Wright), as he fights for his own sanity and survival. Wow, what a cast.

"The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" comes out next month and has Wright sharing the screen with the blond Bond, Daniel Craig. See the official website for ... well, a photo, at least!

Wright also visited the Congo recently for the Enough Project, as this YouTube video attests. Wow, does she look great!

Wright is also reported to be starring in "The Grandmothers." See the Facebook  note about that.

A fan page for Wright on Facebook has all this news and more, such as photos of Wright in these roles.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

He's got "Dallas" and "The Dukes" covered for sure: BRBTV presents a sampling of the voice talent of Will Rodgers

We knew he had talent when we saw his site, "Will's Ultimate Guide Super Friends Episode Guide!" And he's got such a wonderful, geeky-keen grasp of detail, a love for classic TV shows, and a skill at writing that we asked him to collaborate on some upcoming BRBTV projects. But the real talent of Will "The Voice Man" Rodgers of Tennessee is his voicework. It's only fitting that part of the BRBTV video series on YouTube includes a sprinkling of his impersonations of classic TV characters. Enjoy ...

Monday, November 07, 2011

Jackson Bostwick tells us more about his work on "Shazam!"

So just how closely did the "Shazam!" Saturday-morning TV series of the 1970s follow the well-known comic-book character? Where in California was the show filmed, and what was the deal with those "Elders"? Where was Shazam the Wizard, anyway? Jackson Bostwick, the original star of Filmation's live-action half-hour series weighed in on those questions and more as BRBTV chatted with him at this year's Geek Media Expo in Nashville, Tennessee.

The latest in the BRBTV video series puts you there at Bostwick's table at the event as he talks with Will and BRB about his work on the series. We hope you enjoy it. Consider it a follow-up to our email interview with Bostwick a few months back on this very blog ...

Friday, November 04, 2011

Jeannie Epper had the inside track on those "Dynasty" catfights

For our recently released BRBTV Report on the '70s TV show "Wonder Woman," we got the chance to talk via phone to esteemed Hollywood stuntwoman Jeannie Epper, who was the primary double for Lynda Carter in that series and who was even one of the two subjects of the 2004 documentary flick "Double Dare" for that same "WW" work.

Epper comes from a big family of Hollywood actors and stunt doubles spanning four generations, and her resume certainly extends far beyond "Wonder Woman." Take "Charlie's Angels," for instance, or "The Bionic Woman," "Logan's Run," "The Rockford Files," "Beverly Hills Cop III," "Con Air," "Blade," and a ton more. And this gal, just turning 70 this year, shows no signs of slowing down. On the day we talked to her this past July, she had just done an explosion scene for CBS' "Criminal Minds." But what we talked about with  her this day was the aforementioned "Wonder Woman" ... as well as another little show that we happen to like ...

Those popular "Dynasty" catfights featuring Linda Evans as Krystle Carrington and Joan Collins as Alexis Colby were a tad more dangerous than they might have looked, you see. And Epper just happens to be the one who stepped in and spared Evans from injury. Epper tells us she got that "Dynasty" gig from having doubled for Evans on "Big Valley." Evans then asked for her in her "Dynasty" days.

Epper was with the show from the beginning and says that she handled not only the catfights but a few other things along the way.

"I did the horseback riding. Remember Rock Hudson, before they knew he had AIDS? He looked like a really old man. We were doing that horse chase. My brother Andy stunt-doubled him in the horse chase, and I was doubling her (Evans). And she rolls down the hill,and he comes down and scoops her up and kisses her. And …” Epper pauses.

“I shouldn’t really say it because it’s not my story to tell, but yes, I was there that day. She was a little worried.”

The concern was downplayed, of course, for fear of a hysteria in this just-discovered disease. “That was before they knew about saliva," Epper says. "They didn’t know so much as they know now about that disease.”

She continues, "I also did stair falls for her. You remember the episode where she fell down the stairs? I did that. But the catfights were the best. You know of all the episodes, I have in its entirety the one where Linda was fighting herself in the attic.” (Catfight No. 4, in “The Vigil,” January 22, 1986)

“That was a rough fight. That was a really really rough fight. The pond one was fun.”

So in the attic scene with the real Krystle and fake Krystle fighting, we had to ask, who was the other stuntwoman? “Donna Evans was able to come in and be the twin," Epper says. "She dated my son way, way back, in the ‘80s. She’s married now and has a family. She doubles for Anne Hathaway. We worked on ‘Princess Diaries’ together, and I doubled Julie Andrews, and she doubled Anne. She used to double Sharon Stone and lots of others. Back then, there were a lot of big actresses who were doing action stuff. Her sister Debbie does all the car work for Angelina Jolie.”

Did Epper do all of the “Dynasty” catfights involving Krystle? “I didn’t do the pillow fight." (the studio fight) "My sister did. I was on another show. I wasn’t under contract to them yet. They’d bring me in and use me when they needed me. Later they put me under contract, because they wanted the same people to double the same actresses. But in the pillow fight, it was her and a girl named Regina Parton.”

What was Linda Evans like to work with? “Just great," Epper says. "We’ve known each other since we were 19 years old because of ‘Big Valley.’ I rode horses for her on that.”

What about Joan Collins?

“I loved working with her," Epper says. "I loved to watch her because she was so amazingly old Hollywood, and to get to see that, to see that she was old Hollywood, was great. She was demanding. Linda would always calm her down. But a lot of times she was right about things too.”

She says, “There was a certain thing that went on in that period. Joan wasn’t that old. She liked me because I understood her as a woman. Things would get rough and they’d make you do what you didn’t want to do,and I didn’t do that with her. She’d be like, ‘Oh thank God, it’s Jeannie.’”

What was the biggest challenge Epper faced on “Dynasty”?

“We did a lot of fire stuff. Do you remember the one where they didn’t know which one got burned to death? He carried both of us out.”  (“The Cabin” season-ending cliffhanger, April 20, 1983) “Thank God my brother was the one doubling whoever the guy was.” (Mark Jennings) “You always have to trust people in a situation like that. Anytime you do fire, other people are there to take care of you. I never got burnt, either. ... I like to critique my own work, and I’ll sometimes think, could I have done it better. I think we did a really good job on that episode. They were trying to get it in one take. By the time it was over with, we were like, ‘Please say print!’ Then they would kinda punch in and get some little pieces. That was probably the hardest one.”

And the attic catfight, we add. Which was when George Hamilton was on the show. “Yes," she says. "He and I had to go through a plate glass window. I loved him. He was the brownest man I ever saw, and he was the nicest man. He’s just one of the old toughies, you know. But he kept his looks. Some of them, they change. They don’t look like themselves when they were younger.”

And the clothes? What about those fabulous clothes?

"All of the clothes were made by Nolan Miller. He made my clothes and her clothes, and we weren’t allowed to take them. There was one outfit where I said, ‘Can I just wear this out Saturday night,’ because I knew they were going to rip it off me the next week. And it was a no. … But boy, could he fit clothes to your body. Because they fitted me just like they fitted Linda. For somebody like me who could never afford to have someone make them outfits like that, it was something. All those clothes fitted to me. You wonder where they ended up. Probably auctioned off somewhere.”


You can read the full text of our interview with Jeannie Epper in the upcoming Kindle edition of the BRBTV reference guide, "Dynasty High."

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

John Wesley Shipp talks "Flash" and more at GMX panel

Years before the success of sites like eBay, his costar Mark Hamill seemed to know the value of a piece of a superhero costume, as John Wesley Shipp of TV's "The Flash" explains in his panel discussion at this year's Geek Media Expo. And if you missed hearing Shipp tell this and other "Flash" stories live and in person at the Nashville event a week or two back, BRBTV will put you in the audience with the latest videos on our YouTube channel.

Just how enthused was "Star Wars" alum Hamill about his role as the Trickster on "The Flash"? And how did the role influence his voicework a year later on "Batman: The Animated Series"? What was that Flash costume really like, and why does its display at a Hard Rock Cafe make Shipp a little uneasy? And what about a key (motherly) casting connection between "The Flash" and our beloved "Dallas"? Will "The Voice Man" Rodgers of BRBTV points it out from the audience as part of this Q and A session. Shipp, who portrayed Martin Ellis on "Santa Barbara" a few years before he donned the scarlet suit, also talks about his work on daytime TV.

We hope you enjoy the videos. And look out -- we've got another superhero coming up in our video series -- Jackson Bostwick of "Shazam!"