Thursday, January 21, 2010

Fun surprises on Route 66

When I watch older television shows for the first time, I try not to read the description or look up the episodes at all ahead of time. I don't like to know what's coming, because I love the sheer delight of being surprised by who ends up guest staring. This week, the first disc for the third season of Route 66 arrived.

What's the first surprise in the second episode ("Journey to Nineveh") on the disc?

Wow! That was unexpected! And how fun to see Buster Keaton (and Shaggy, his character's dog) cruising along the highway with Tod and Buz!

And then? John Astin shows up!

And then? Edgar Buchanan!!

How cool is that? Guy Raymond (who I mostly know as the long-suffering bartender in Star Trek's "The Trouble with Tribbles" episode, but he shows up in lots of stuff), and John Davis Chandler (who I know as one of the nasty Hammond brothers from Ride the High Country) also show up, as father and son, LOL!

The episode itself is just light-weight fluff with a very silly (but kind of funny) plot. There's a bit too many silent routine antics which, alas, fall a bit flat, and the ending fight... huh? Where'd that come from? But the cast makes up for it. I love the courtroom scene at the end, that's got the right touch of subtle humor and seriousness. Love the dog and Joe E. Brown's dilapidated ancient truck. Love the birthday cake.

And just how cool is it to see these guys turn up on the show?


  1. I do the same thing with tv shows! I've been watching Hitchcock Presents in order, and I get so excited when I see a favorite actor pop up in an episode! That actually reminds me, I haven't bought Season 4 yet... ;-D

  2. That's quite a cast! I've never seen Route 66, but need to remedy that. George Maharis let the success go to his cranium and he was never the same...

    As a "vintage TV" afficionado, I never fail to be pleased with either big name movie stars or those tried-and-true character actors who appeared on so many of my favorite shows.

    John Davis Chandler is best known (at least by me) as the bounty hunter in "The Outlaw Josey Wales" ("Man's got to do somethin' for a livin'") and as the kooky bomber in the Columbo episode "Publish or Perish."

    And once again speaking of vintage TV, I'm currently in a big "Wild, Wild West" mood (got fourth season for Christmas). Lots of great, groovy lighting and music! Are you a fan of the show? And if so, I imagine you being an "Artemus Gordon" fan.

  3. Kate - that's so cool! Yeah, I like no spoilers if I can avoid them on old shows (old movies too, when possible). Just makes it more exciting.


    C.K. -- Why yes! "Wild Wild West" was one of my favorite tv shows growing up. Still has the best theme song and opening credits (after season one when he really slugs the back-stabbing chick). And yep, Artemus Gordon was my favorite character. Great fun show.

    Very strangely, I have not seen a lot of Clint Eastwood's westerns. I have no idea why that is, as I love Westerns, and enjoy watching Clint Eastwood, and have always wanted to see them. Just bad timing on my part, I guess. I must remedy that as soon as possible.

    Also -- did you see "The Blue Max" complete score just released? I snagged a copy immediately. That one I can't pass up!

  4. I love "Route 66." By the way, you've been nominated for a Kreativ Blogger Award here ( Congratulations.

  5. Anonymous5:52 PM

    This episode is playing right now 8-9 PM EDT 8/5/12. Quite a lineup of stars!

  6. Anonymous5:53 PM

    ... sorry, is on RTV.