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Doors Closing, Doors Opening. Part 3
 by Will Moriaty

The End of Summer
 by Mike Smith

Simple Minds, New Order CDs On The Way!..."Red Eye" Soars, "...Thunder" Blunder....Bob Denver Dies
 by Andy Lalino

Nolan And His Leg Up....Hurricane Bush....Hammer Horror Series DVD....Masters of Horror Update
 by Matt Drinnenberg

Aftermath....Please Donate....Our Little Buddy....Jaws: The Story, Part 32
 by Mike Smith

Nolan's Pop Culture Review, 2005!
    Established A.D. 2000, March 19. Now in our sixth calendar year!
Number 285  (Vol. 6, No. 36). This edition is for the week of September 5--11, 2005.

Aftermath of Destruction

  • I'm back!
  • William Rehnquist dies at 80
  • Bob Denver dies at 70
  • Coffeehouse Film Series Reminder
  • Special note: Nolan here, and I'm home continuing my recovery. Thanks again to Lauré Piper for taking over the reigns of PCR while I was in the hospital last week being treated for Cellulitis of the Right Leg. Lauré was quite diligent in passing along all correspondence, so thanks to all my friends and fans who wrote with Get Well wishes, they were received and sincerely appreciated!

    Although I said I'd go into more detail of my hosptal stay in this wek's issue of PCR, it seems trivial now in light of the incredible news week we just had. As for my malady, the more I read it, the more I think my Message Board summation is as concise a version as possible and will do nicely for the historical record. I'd like to add to that, however, that it was my first hospital confinement in 44 years---kind of a big deal for me.

    Watching The Disaster From My Hospital Bed
    Hurricane Katrina is the first natural disaster news coverage I watched from beginning to end entirely from a hospital bed. The obvious clash of feelings is just when I was feeling pretty sorry for myself, I'm presented with images of people who've lost everything. It put things in perspective.

    The Government Response
    The next clash of feelings is the seeming glacial pace at which the federal government seemed to want to respond. This is currently the talk of the country as well as it should be. It is likely not necessary I revisit every single low point, except to summarize the main complaints.

    Hurricane Katrina was a Category 4 storm that virutally destroyed the city of New Orleans and many parts of Lousianna and Mississippi. New Orleans already sits anywhere from 9 to 15 feet below sea level, the storm surge was nothing less than catastrophic. When the levee to Lake Pontchartrain breached, a wall of water overcame the already-deluged city. Seeing nothing but rooftops, often with survivors standing on top of them, as far as the eye can see, was heartbreaking.

    The blame game for the delay in rescue and relief efforts abound. One ultra-right wing theory is the feds blame these people for not getting out of harm's way when they had the chance. Forget that some of them had no means or destination, save for the Superdome, which almost didn't make it through the storm itself. Then there's is the very ugly theory that these people were too poor and too black to screw with. And that if it had been Kennebunkport, Maine or wherever, Bush would've personally rowed his kayak from house to house to save his rich buddies.

    A similar theory is Bush and Co wanted to rush in, but all their equipment was in Iraq! Now I see Bill Clinton and Bush Sr., going around saying the government bureaocracy is at fault, but natch, Bush Sr. is stopping short of blaming Junior outright.

    The draining of New Orleans is going well, but slow, there's much work to be done. The coming nightmare is counting the dead bodies that will eventually be uncovered. The mayor estimates it could be 10,000. The remainder of the survivors have been ordered out of the city under threat of force.

    Bourbon Street and the French Quarter survived a little better due to its better elevation, and god bless 'em, the people are still planning on Mardi Gras next year, albeit a scaled-back version.

    If this is supposed to be the "catastrophe-ready" post-9/11 state of the union, something went terribly wrong somewhere.

    Replacing William Rehnquist
    Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, William Rehnquist, died Saturday at the age of 80 after suffering a long bout with thyroid cancer. At the time of this writing, the body and coffin are still on display in the Great Hall. Later, Rehnquist is expected to be buried with full military honors.

    Rehnquist was appointed to the Supreme Court as an associate justice in 1971 by President Nixon and took his seat on Jan. 7, 1972. He was elevated to chief justice by President Reagan in 1986.

    Rehnquist, whose brand of conservatism pushed the court to the right, was involved in two extraordinary interventions in the executive branch -- the impeachment trial of President Clinton and the settlement of the 2000 election in Bush's favor. He oversaw a court that dealt with the separation of church and state, the rights of states, affirmative action, abortion and gay rights.

    After undergoing chemo and other therapies for his thyroid condition, a frail -looking Rehnquist swore in George W. Bush last January. He often said he'd fullfil his duties as Chief Justice until he died. He was a man of his word.

    Earlier in the summer, Sandra Day O'Connor, often the dissenting "liberal" vote on many Court opinions, stepped down and was replaced with conservative John Roberts who's still awating confirmation. Rehnquist opens another seat on the Court that gives President Bush still another opportunity to fill with another conservative (the change wouldn't be that drastic as Rehnquist was a conservative), although calls have gone out to put in a moderate. Whoever is chosen faces an even more bruising Senate confirmation process than Roberts.

    Everyone will be watching the Top 10 Hot Topics especially closely with this now-more-than-ever conservative court.

    Bob Denver, "Gilligan", Dies at 70
    Bob Denver as GilliganThis really hit me pretty hard, folks. Actor Bob Denver, most recognized as Gilligan from the '60s sit-com Gilligan's Island has lost his battle with cancer at the age of 70. He died at Wake Forest University Baptist Hospital in North Carolina.

    OK, here it is. When I first try to get to know somebody fairly important (or who thinks they're pretty important), rather than cave into the politics of the day or some such droll topic, I almost always catch them off guard with the following question: "What's your favorite episode of Gilligan's Island and why?" Why do I ask people that? Because it's all that matters.

    To those slightly older than me, Denver was identifiable as Maynard G. Krebs, the bearded beatnik friend of Dwayne Hickman’s Dobie in the “The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis,” which aired on CBS from 1959 to 1963. Krebs, whose only desire was to play the bongos and hang out at coffee houses, would shriek every time the word “work” was mentioned in his presence.

    Gilligan, the role Denver accepted in 1964, on the other hand, was industrious, but inept. But still lovable because he was always trying.

    With Bob Denver's passing, only the Professor (Russell Johnson), Mary Ann Summers (Dawn Wells) and movie star Ginger Grant (Tina Louise) survive from the original cast. The Skipper (Alan Hale, Jr.) died in 1990. Millionaire Thurston Howell III (Jim Backus) died in 1989, and his wife Lovey (Natalie Shafer) died in 1991.

    TV critics were less than kind about the show during its original airing, dismissing the show about a group of tourists being stranded on an uncharted desert island as inane. But after it was canceled by CBS in 1967, it found new audiences over and over in syndicated reruns and reunion films, including 1981’s “The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan’s Island.” (It also led to the recent TBS reality series “The Real Gilligan’s Island”, the less said the better.) One of the most recent films was 2001’s “Surviving Gilligan’s Island: The Incredibly True Story of the Longest Three Hour Tour in History,” in which other actors portrayed the original seven-member cast while three of the four surviving members, including Denver, narrated and reminisced. Due to a series of unfortunate events, I missed that landmark show.

    Nolan's Top 5 "Gilligan's Island" trivia questions:
    (Note: this is wthout the benefit of seeing the above-mentioned "Surviving Gilligan's Island" TV-Movie---the following are from memory alone. Also, I don't have individual episode titles handy, sorry.)
    1.) What was Gilligan's first name? Ah, I love this one. Officially, he had no first name as even when the radio voice-overs would newscast about the castaways, he was never referred to as anything but "Gilligan". However, in Bob Denver's 1993 autobiography, he confides that he and Gilligan producer Sherwood Schwartz determined that if Gilligan did have a first name it would be "Willy".
    2.) What was the Skipper's and the Professor's "real" names? Although most crazed fans know this little trinket by now, I was always proud of the fact I memorized it from the show itself. And their names were on the show, but mentioned only once -- during the pilot episode where all passengers and crew were named by a radio announcer (with the noted exception of "Gilligan"). Among the castaways: Captain Jonas Grumby and Professor Roy Hinkley. Afterwards, they were always referred to as "The Skipper" and The Professor". And now you know.
    3.) Bob Denver is so perfect as Gilligan, no one else could've been cast, right? Actually, I myself forget from time to time that Jerry Van Dyke was approached first to play Gilligan! Bob Denver got it because Van Dyke passed it up (to do what...star in My Mother, The Car?, Har, har.)
    4.) How old is Gilligan? Although Bob Denver was close to 30 when he started the role of Gilligan, I followed every clue from the show itself and came up with a figure of 22 for the character's age (at least by the time of the color episodes).
    5.) What is your favorite episode of Gilligan's Island and why? The Harold Hecuba episode starring Phil Silvers. Why? IT HAD EVERYTHING including a complete musical production number of "Hamlet" near the end of the show set to familiar opera tunes. Amazing stuff, stands up to this day.

    Special bonus question: What other series did Bob Denver star in after Gilligan (not counting the reunion movies)? "The Good Guys", "Dusty's Trails", "Far-Out Space Nuts". Special personal memory regarding "The Good Guys": Besides Herb Edelmen, One of Bob Denver's co-stars on the series was none other than Alan Hale, Jr. who played a cab driver named "Big Tom". In a VERY special episode, Jim Backus showed up at the diner and a drunk got off his barstool and commented, "I keep thinking I've seen you guys on an island somewhere!" And the musical motif in the background played a few notes from "The Gilligan's Island theme"!! WAY cool moments like that we never have anymore. --Nolan

    Despite critical dissings and Denver's much-publicized flirtation with marijuana in the late 1990s (I think that was to help with cancer pain), to me, Bob Denver and Gilligan's Island are national treasures. Bob Denver and the departed castaways are sorely missed.

    Coffeehouse Film Series Reminder
    TOO Productions presents the next Coffeehouse Film Review on Thursday, September 8, 2005 from 8 – 10 p.m. at Studio 1515, located at 1515 Seventh Avenue in Ybor City (Tampa). Coffeehouse Film Reviews showcases independent films made by local filmmakers. Coffeehouse Film Reviews is held every second Thursday of the month and is free.

    The September Coffeehouse Film Review will be a tribute to Sondra Overholser, a local filmmaker who recently passed away at the age of 65 after a battle with cancer. We will be showcasing a number of her films. Sandra moved here five years ago from her native Kokomo, Ind. She was president and owner of El Gato Movie Productions. She received a best actress award from the Saints & Sinners Film Fest and was an avid reader and art collector.

    Also, TOO Productions will show clips of its new feature film, 99, for the first time!

    TOO Productions feels that there are very few, if any, regular outlets in the local area for local independent filmmakers to showcase their films. Hopefully, this monthly event will provide that outlet for everyone, from experienced local independent filmmakers to local college and high school filmmakers experimenting with film production for the first time. TOO Productions promises your film will be shown!
       Studio 1515 is owned and operated by Walter and Sarah Romeo, who opened the coffeehouse in order to provide local artists a place to gather and share their art. Coffeehouse Film Reviews is another way to provide a showcase to local artists.
       TOO Productions is looking for film submissions for future events. For more information on the event or for information on how to submit a film, email tooprod@hotmail.com or paulguzzo@hotmail.com. All genres of films are accepted – feature length, shorts, documentaries, comedy, horror, love, art, drama, foreign language, experimental etc. No pornography!

    Please consider making a donation to help support Crazed Fanboy! Click on the "donate" link below and give whatever you can. I sincerely thank you for any and all consideration.---Nolan
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    "Mike's Rant" is ©2005 by Michael A. Smith    "Matt's Rail" is ©2005 by Matthew Drinnenberg     "La Floridiana" is ©2005 by William Moriaty     "This Week's Movie Review" is ©2005 by Michael A. Smith    "Chiller Cinema" is ©2005 by Drew Reiber    "Creature's Corner" is ©2005 by John Lewis    "Couch Potato Confessions" is ©2005 by Vinnie Blesi    "Oddservations" is ©2005 by Andy Lalino      All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2005 by Nolan B. Canova    
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