Heading back to The West Wing, this is a wonderful scene about CJ having to convince President Bartlet to pardon another turkey, after having done it already with another one.
And this is an absolutely lovely scene about immigrants on Thanksgiving Day that culminates in a beautiful rendition of the song, "We Gather Together."
The video is very fuzzy at the opening, but it clears up.
The West Wing always had very good and often fun Thanksgiving episodes, so I thought I'd post several snippets.
We'll start with maybe my favorite of them -- President Bartlet and the Butterball Hot Line.
And here's another good clip from The West Wing. It's when a couple of turkeys are dropped off at the White House to be pardoned.
A couple months ago, I posted the wonderful Kukla, Fran and Ollie production of “The Mikado,” which they aired on June 7, 1950. (And I posted here.) This comes from the show the very next day – when the Kuklapolitans and Fran do a post-mortem of the operetta. It all starts full of glorious praise…but soon gets detailed in criticism of almost everything, including the camerawork and how the music director wore his hat, as well as Fletcher Rabbit’s diction, Gilbert & Sullivan’s writing, Fran forgetting some words and more, as it all devolves into a disarray of sniping.) But of course what I most loved was that it all begins with a brief scene between Kukla and my fave, the insane Cecil Bill who speaks no known language.
Back in 2021, I wrote here about my love of a British series Ghosts -- which got a terrific, very respectful American adaptation on CBS, that's become a big hit. For those who watch the American version, I wanted to mention that they had a special guest appearance last night. The actor who played "the actor who plays Pete in the documentary" was Matthew Baynton -- who stars in the original British series and co-created the show.
(On the British original, he plays Thomas Thorne, a pretentious, mediocre, romantic poet from the early 1800s who insists Lord Byron stole his work and is in love with the modern-day woman of the house, wonderfully played by Charlotte Ritchie.)
By the way, as a reminder, the original series is available on HBO Max and is a joy. The two versions are very compatible. It's sort of like getting twice as many episodes.
I don’t know why I never saw this, but it’s wonderful. It’s the presentation for Best Lead Actress in a Comedy Series at the 2011 Emmys. Something SO funny is done, I don’t want to give anything away, but I admire everyone involved for playing this all the way, every step. Perhaps Amy Poehler the most, but only because she’s the first nominee, and it’s SO weird before anyone knows what’s going on. And then they get it in full appreciation. Because it’s hilarious.
(Side note: the young woman crying in the audience is Melissa McCarthy's sister and actually crying, not part of the joke.)
As we near Halloween, I figured it would be nice to join the Kuklapolitans as they too get ready for the holiday. And appropriately so -- because this is broadcast of Kukla, Fran and Ollie went on the air October 28, 1949...73 years ago tonight.
It's a low-key affair, not overly funny but with a lot of charm and a couple of songs, as Beulah Witch gets ready for a bunch of her fellow alums from Witch Normal to arrive in Chicago for a Halloween convention. One other thing I like -- the episode opens with Beulah Witch doing some preparation work along with Cecil Bill, my favorite character who is lunatic (speaking a "ta-toi-toi-toi" language unintelligible to anyone but other Kuklapolitans) and only appears on the show on rare occasions, and generally briefly. Happily, this is one of those brief times.
And happily, too, upcoming in a few days we'll have their Halloween episode.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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