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The White Shadow (1978)
Episode Spotlight - Coolidge Goes Hollywood
Starting today, I will do an "Episode Spotlight". I will pick a random episode, 1 to 54, based off a random number generator. Today is the 38th episode filmed, "Coolidge Goes Hollywood": It's the off-season and Coolidge's talents are discovered, but not in basketball. First, Frank Leonard, the drama teacher (last year he was the music teacher and his name was Art) wants Cool for the drama club after he sees him reciting one line from a TV show. Then, the director from a show called "Downtown High" hears him say "smack you upside yo head" and immediately thinks he's a natural actor.
What follows is quite possibly the silliest (not funniest) episode of the series. Sure, it has its funny moments. But, my question is, why didn't Season 2 end with the city championship? Why was it necessary to add two more episodes? Sure, "A Few Good Men" dealt with the guys who were graduating (hey, it's a show about high schoolers. Somebody HAD to graduate after two seasons, right?) and was somewhat plausible to occur after the championship. Why was this episode needed? Maybe the producers wanted to give Byron Stewart a shot at expanding his horizons as an actor. I do have to say Stewart was born to play the role of Warren Coolidge. It's kind of unfortunate he didn't go on to more roles and I'm glad Bruce Paltrow saw fit to reprise his character in St. Elsewhere. Maybe it's better he didn't; he probably would have spent his career being typecast in "big person" roles mainly in comedies.
My favorite parts are definitely (1) when Coolidge wants Coach Reeves to be his agent. Reeves' response at the possibility of being subservient to Coolidge is hilarious, (2) the team members crash his party and he ends up in the swimming pool.
It's too bad Curtis Jackson was killed off before this one. I think he potentially could have had some hilarious moments.
Note: Harry Danner (Mr. Leonard) was Bruce Paltrow's brother-in-law, Blythe Danner's brother
Baywatch hits the snowy slopes
I remember this show being on as a fill-in during the "ratings sweeps." I thought it was kind of cool and was surprised that ABC didn't give it a full-season shot. To me, though, put matching swimsuits on the younger ones and give James Brolin a shave and a tan and move the locale to Malibu and, basically, you have a poor man's "Baywatch."
my favorite of the Veggie Tales series
This is Larry and Bob's delightfully funny adaptation of the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego from the Book of Daniel. Larry the Cucumber, Bob the Tomato, and Junior Asparagus play employees at the Nezzer Chocolate Factory, run by Nebby K. Nezzer (a take-off on King Nebuchudnezzer), a big pickle. Nezzer is a slave driver, working his employees ungodly hours in making chocolate bunnies. One day, however, feeling unusually charitable on the day they sell their 1000th bunny, Nezzer lets the employees eat as many chocolate bunnies as they want (obviously these are not union workers, or someone would have mentioned time off as a better option). Junior, Bob, and Larry (as Rack, Shack, and Benny, take-offs of the three friends of Daniel) elect not to eat any bunnies, since their moms told them when they were very young that eating a lot of chocolate is not healthy. As a result, most of the other factory employees fall asleep on the job, but Rack, Shack, and Benny stay alert and awake. Nezzer notices this and makes the threesome his junior executives. Once in the front office, they learn that Mr. Nezzer has built a chocolate bunny shrine and plans to require his employees to bow down to a giant iron bunny and sing "The Bunny Song" once a day to show their worship to him. Rack, Shack, and Benny refuse to sing the song (because or bow down and Nezzer banishes them to the furnace. In the true spirit of the Scripture, Nezzer finds that, because of their conviction, God protects the three from burning up. He even observes a fourth "person" in the furnace with them, quite possibly an angel protecting them because they had the courage to stand up for their convictions. Nezzer is impressed and asks for their forgiveness.
This is a wonderful adaptation of the Bible story, teaching kids and adults that God is pleased when we choose to follow His ways, rather that follow the crowd, even if it means losing something such as friends, a job, or even your life. He promises to protect us and lead us through any trials that may arise as a result.
Children and adults alike will like this movie. It contains elements that both will understand, like when Mr. Lunt, Nezzer's assistant, observes Rack, Shack, and Benny still standing after all the other employees have conked out and says, "Actually, boss, I think the tomato is sitting." implying that it is difficult to tell if a talking tomato is sitting or standing, especially when it has no arms or legs.
What I like best is the songs. "Stand Up" at the end is the best "Veggie Tales" song ever. I also liked Larry and Bob's exchange during the "Silly Songs with Larry" segment, where Larry sings in Spanish and Bob interprets.