Monday, November 30, 2015

Our fave Kalamazoo toy show serves up the good TV-related stuff, once again

Heeeeaaaaa-ven ... we were in heaven ... This past weekend's Circus Maximus Toy Show at the fairgrounds in Kalamazoo, Michigan, was again a big blast for BRBTV, as we saw a whole lot of cool toys related to classic television shows. Behold ...

A J.R. Ewing-themed "Dallas" jigsaw puzzle, above, and a nice assortment of TV show board games below. "The Six Million Dollar Man," "The Flintstones," "The Partridge Family," "Welcome Back, Kotter," "Emergency," "The Fall Guy," "Mork and Mindy" and more ... Did you have any idea there was a "General Hospital" board game????

You see that small Mego Luke Duke figure from "The Dukes of Hazzard"? That sticker in the corner says "80." We didn't ask!

We saw quite a few of the Hasbro "Charlie's Angels" dolls at the show. This is a wonderful set of the first three of the four dolls, for $85. We saw the others loose and reasonably priced. This author showed you her two -- Farrah and Jaclyn -- in Episode 12 of Season 2 of the Terrific TV Toys series.

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

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Own a "Dynasty" gown: Joan Collins' property stars in a December auction

It makes us a little nervous when a megastar from one of our beloved classic TV shows decides to auction off her belongings. But Julien's Auctions is featuring a collection next month that you won't want to miss, as it includes an item or two from Collins' time on "Dynasty." The catalog itself is lovely and a great keepsake for fans. Included in the collection are quite a few pieces worn on-screen from "Dynasty," its reunion movie, and other productions -- even her slinky blue number from the Snickers commercial with Stephanie Beacham. For convenience, we're including the official press release for Collins' auction here ...


Beverly Hills, California – Julien’s Auctions, auction house to the stars, announces The Collection of Dame Joan Collins, an exquisite collection of fashion, jewelry, decorative arts and personal items representing her life and career. Joan Collins, first and foremost, is an actress but she is also a best-selling author, an accomplished producer and a successful entrepreneur. Nominated for an Emmy Award and winner of a Golden Globe Award and People’s Choice Award, as well as numerous other awards worldwide, Collins has appeared in more than 60 films and dozens of television programs.

When Alexis Carrington appeared on the hit primetime television drama, “Dynasty,” women from all over the world dreamed of being her and living the life of luxury and high stakes as only Carrington could have lived. It was Dame Joan Collins who brought the cunning and beautiful Alexis to life on the screen from 1981 to its end in 1989. The ABC award-winning drama featured Joan Collins alongside John Forsythe, Linda Evans and others.

Stage Worn Corset
The tale of Colorado oil tycoon Blake Carrington and the women he loved and wronged captivated America each week for eight years. The show was also nominated every year for a Golden Globe Award for Best TV Drama.

Collins won the Golden Globe in 1983 for her role in the show.
Versace Choker
The legendary Collins has worked aside some of Hollywood’s most popular stars including Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Bette Davis, Paul Newman, Gregory Peck, Kirk Douglas and numerous others. Some of her most memorable films include “The Girl in The Red Velvet Swing,” “Rally Round the Flag Boys,” and “The Virgin Queen.”  Her work in television has included TV shows such as “Starsky & Hutch,” “Mission Impossible,” “Love Boat” and “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” just to name a few. Since Joan made her stage debut at the age of nine and signed her first film contract at the age of 16, she has gone on to become one of the most iconic and recognizable Hollywood stars of our time.

Joan Collins Mink and Fox Fur Cape
Highlights from The Collection of Dame Joan Collins include outstanding couture dresses from the 1960s, costumes, designer fashions and accessories, jewelry, career memorabilia, decorative art, furniture and personal items. These highlights include two vintage Louis Vuitton steamer trunks, a 1961 beaded event worn couture dress, a couture halter dress worn to the “Doctor Doolittle” premiere, costumes from “Dynasty” including event worn gowns designed by Nolan Miller, a custom made white fox and mink cape designed by furrier Edward Lowell, a collection of costume jewelry dating from the 1960s to present and a gold perfume bottle gifted to Collins from Natalie Wood and Robert Wagner. Other highlights include furnishings and many personal items.

Collins is also a tireless humanitarian and patron of worldwide charities including the International Foundation for Children with Learning Disabilities, The Shooting Star/Chase charity and others. In 1997 Dame Joan Collins was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for her services to the Dramatic Arts and Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 2015 for her services to charity.
The Collection of Dame Joan Collins will be featured in a full-color collectible catalog. The catalog will be available at

Monday, November 23, 2015

People mag features power women of classic TV in its special issue

Yea, they certainly are power females, and People magazine recognizes that in the special thick issue on sale at the newsstand now (yea, the paper copy -- some folks still buy that!!!). It's all a celebration of the "women who rule TV," with plenty of fresh faces from current TV shows, but we just love seeing the classic gals ...

Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman, above, talks about her iconic role and how she did all of her own stunts at first, but then when the show became huge, the producers and crew were much more protective of her. And Joan Collins, below, talks about her just-as-big gig as Alexis Carrington Colby Whatever-Whatever on "Dynasty."

Saturday, November 07, 2015

Terrific TV Toys: Dusty doll by Kenner

We're trippin' back through time once again, circa 1974 or 1975, for the latest episode of the Terrific TV Toys series. The lovely Dusty doll -- an alternative to Barbie back then and a bit huskier in her tomboy demeanor -- is the subject this time. She was a golf champ, she was a tennis champ, she rode a horse named Nugget, and she even had her own sports trophy! Come explore with Billie Rae Bates of BRBTV the appeal of the vintage Dusty doll! And what connection does this lovely toy have with television? Tune in and find out ...

This is episode 26 of the show's second season. Stay tuned -- we've got two more episodes to round out this year, one of them being a very special 50th episode overall!!!

Friday, November 06, 2015

Condolences to the family and friends of George Barris

He was a true pioneer -- maybe the pioneer -- where TV star cars were concerned. And now George Barris, creator of the Batmobile and other fabulous cars from classic television shows, has, as our buddy Mike put it, "gone on to that great Batcave in the sky." BRBTV offers condolences to Barris' family and friends. This author had the pleasure of talking with him at this past summer's Fleetwood Country Cruise-In hosted at the Steve Plunkett estate in Ontario, Canada. Barris was friendly and exceedingly sweet, chatting about some of his work over the years, for an upcoming BRBTV project.

Photos by Grigg; please do not copy without permission.

Monday, November 02, 2015

Rita Lakin talks about her writing work on "Dynasty" and more in her new autobiography

Rita Lakin once wrote for our beloved "Dynasty" TV series. She had a longstanding relationship with powerhouse Aaron Spelling, working for him on several of his projects. As she worked her way up in the biz in the 1960s and '70s, she even was offered another little TV show that she didn't think would become much. "This one sounded so dull and cliche'-ridden," she writes in her new autobiography, "The Only Woman in the Room." "I could just imagine my good-old boy heroes riding around in their pickup trucks with a dead buck deer with huge antlers tied on their hoods. Drinking hard liquor, talking about oil as they brought their trophies home to their trophy wives."

Yea. "Dallas" actually wasn't anything like that.

Yes, that's right -- Lakin was offered the chance to help create the "Dallas" TV series in the late '70s. And she muses in her book how she turned down something that became such a smash hit. "Not my cup of tea," she said at the time. "Who would watch? Who would care? Certainly not me."

Ah, the ironies of life.

But hey, Lakin did great, just the same, doing not only that "Dynasty" gig, but also "Peyton Place," "Mod Squad," "Dr. Kildare," some assorted TV movies. She worked her way up in a business dominated by men. She is to be admired for her diligence, despite being that only female in the room, building such a wonderful, successful career.

I got the chance to review Lakin's new book for Foreword Reviews. Catch the review in the next quarterly magazine or online at the Foreword site.

And by the way ... that whole "Dallas" thing? Well, do you recognize the name Howard Lakin from the credits? That is Rita's son -- he's the one who ended up working on "Dallas." Guess they've got their own family "dynasty" going on!

-- BRB

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