Friday, December 21, 2018

December's Underappreciated Music: Peter Pan Records Christmas Music

Yikes, I've fallen behind on articles! I'm making it up with a great one. Today I offer this month's Underappreciated Music, and this month, it's some of my favorite Christmas recordings from Peter Pan Records!

Peter Pan was the king of children's music releases in the 70s and 80s, and I have a special fondness for their Christmas recordings. The following songs are all YouTube renderings of Peter Pan 45 RPM records that I still have in my collection!

Enjoy, and have a great last weekend before Christmas! Be safe, don't drink and drive!

Monday, December 17, 2018

The Carpenters' Christmas Portrait TV Special (1977)

OK folks, one full week left before the big day. Put your sleigh into high gear, Christmas is a' comin'!

Today I present the fourth and maybe the last of the TV variety specials I'll be featuring this season, The Carpenters' Christmas Portrait from 1977. This special coincides with their album of the same name, which is a true Christmas music classic that every Christmas fan should have in their collection. Karen and Richard Carpenter perform classics such as "Sleigh Ride" and "Adeste Fideles," plus their famous original tune "Merry Christmas Darling."


Friday, December 14, 2018

Fraggle Rock, The Bells of Fraggle Rock"

Wrapping up the week is this sweet Christmas-themed episode of the classic Muppet series Fraggle Rock.

In "The Bells of Fraggle Rock," the Fraggles are busy preparing to celebrate their Christmas-like holiday, the Festival of the Bells, but Gobo is skeptical of the celebration. He goes off on his own to see if there is any credence to the event, and learns a valuable lesson along the way. Meanwhile, in the human world, Doc and Sprocket explore winter holidays from many cultures.

Enjoy! Have a great weekend! Go a wassailing!

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Classic Christmas Commercials 2018 Edition

Today I present, later than I usually do in a season, a round of classic Christmas commercials. Some may not understand my fascination with TV commercials, as they are usually something people complain about, but there's something about an old commercial, especially with a Christmas theme, that takes you back to good memories and celebrations just like a TV program can.

Here's hoping this year's showcase does the same for you!

First up, this sweet spot for Burger King from 1976.

Next, a series of promos for various CBS Christmas specials such as Charlie Brown, Rudolph, and 'Twas The Night Before Christmas, among others.

I never thought to sing "Deck The Halls" with the name of M&Ms inserted, but now that's all I can do!

This may be the "hardest sell" Christmas commercial I've ever seen, and I just discovered it days ago. The first Tim Burton Batman film was the hottest selling VHS tape of 1989, and this commercial pulls no punches in emphasizing how urgent a gift this was!

Everyone is still lamenting the loss of Toys R Us this year, and their classic Christmas commercial is one of the all-time greats, but this commercial for the even longer expired toy chain Kiddie City isn't shabby either!

Finally, this last commercial is the most recent of the bunch, being from 2014, but it deserves to be noted as being as wonderful as ringing Hershey's Kisses or Santa sliding on snow on an electric razor. In this Apple Computers commercial, an infamous and lonely figure tries to make peace with the townsfolk by embracing the holidays with them. Things nearly go awry, but the magic of the holidays sets in. What a great commercial!


Monday, December 10, 2018

The Johnny Cash Christmas Show (1978)

Onward and upward we go through this holiday season as we begin Week 3. I'm keeping my new tradition of starting the week with a classic variety TV special with the 1978 edition of The Johnny Cash Christmas Show.

Johnny Cash had a big hit with his weekly variety series in the late 60s and early 70s, and had further success with occasional specials thereafter. This installment includes guests Kris Kristofferson and Rita Coolidge, Steve Martin, and Johnny's wife June Carter Cash and the Carter Family.


Friday, December 7, 2018

Happy Days, "Christmas Time"

Rounding out this week is yet another episode of Happy Days, this time a Christmas episode simply titled "Christmas Time."

This is a bit of a "very special episode" in that Fonzie is contacted by his years-long estranged father, stirring up very hard feelings in Fonzie. Richie does his best (somewhat in a pushy way, in my opinion) to help Fonzie confront his feelings. This being a Christmas episode, all works out well in the end. Plus, the Cunningham family winds up with far too many Christmas trees.

Enjoy! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

The Making of A Charlie Brown Christmas

Tomorrow night marks the first of two nights this month in which ABC will air A Charlie Brown Christmas at 8pm ET/PT; it will also air Thursday, December 20th at 8pm ET/PT. In honor of this most important of pop culture events, here is a brief but informative look behind the scenes at the making of the special.

Put together in only 6 months, it is now, in my humble opinion, the finest half hour of television ever made. Not just out of Christmas programs, but of all TV ever. Don't @ me, as the kids say.


Monday, December 3, 2018

Bing Crosby's Merrie Olde Christmas (1977)

As we start this first full week of December, I bring you another classic TV variety special. This time, it's Bing Crosby's Merrie Olde Christmas.

First airing on November 30, 1977, the special marks Crosby's last-ever Christmas special in his lifetime, as he died after taping but before the special aired. The hour-long special is most notable as featuring a very famous duet.

Yes, that famous duet.

Most of us have seen the clip of the two of them singing, but I thought it would be interesting to watch it in the context of the entire special.


Friday, November 30, 2018

Dragnet, "The Christmas Story"

For everyone thinking "the holidays are here early; Thanksgiving has already passed and it's still November," remember--tomorrow is December 1st and the first official week of the holidays is over already. It's later than you think!

For the first post-Thanksgiving weekend of the holidays, I offer an episode of the original black-and-white run of the legendary TV series Dragnet--an unusual series to have a Christmas episode, but this is a fine example of one. Detectives Joe Friday and Frank Smith investigate the disappearance of a baby Jesus statute from a Catholic church's Nativity display. The work of a heartless thief, a vandal--or someone else?

For anyone familiar with Stan Freberg's Dragnet parody "Christmas Dragnet," it's amusing to hear how closely Freberg imitated the show's characters right down to their speech patterns. Freberg was spot on!

This episode was recreated almost word for word for the series' color revival in the late 60s and can be seen on Hulu (which I just subscribed to this week for the first time--thank you Cyber Monday deal!).

Enjoy! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

November's Underappreciated Music: The Jive Turkeys, "Get Down Santa," "Funky Jesus"

If the Andy Williams Christmas Show I posted this Monday is a little too white-bread for your taste, you may enjoy this month's Underappreciated Music. This is a monthly, multi-blog feature curated by my friend and fellow blogger Todd Mason at his site Sweet Freedom. Check it out for more great underappreciated tunes!

My offerings for November are two retro-styled soul numbers by a group that calls themselves The Jive Turkeys, out of Cincinnati, Ohio. Here are two Christmas-themed soul instrumentals from the band, "Get Down Santa" and "Funky Jesus." When I first heard these tunes a couple of years ago, I thought for sure these were recorded in the late 60s. Imagine my surprise when I learned these were 21st century creations!

You can find more retro soul from the Jive Turkeys and other artists at record label Colemine Records.


Monday, November 26, 2018

The Andy Williams Christmas Show (1966)

Ho Ho Ho! Welcome to the holiday season at Me and You and a Blog Named Boo! This is my absolute favorite time of year, and the blog shows it. From now until New Year's Day, the blog will be covered in mistletoe, holly berry, and garish holiday lights. Whatever your holiday of choice, please have a safe and joyous holiday season.

Now on to the show!

Specifically, The Andy Williams Christmas Show from 1966. Andy Williams has been a key part of the Christmas season for decades thanks to his wonderful Christmas records as well as his annual Christmas variety shows that appeared on TV for many years. TV variety shows have a creatively questionable reputation, and often for good reason, but this is an enjoyable, if old fashioned, holiday treat.

Enjoy, and once again, Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Garfield's Thanksgiving

Well, here we are, mere hours away from the 2018 Holiday Season. Loosen those belts and get ready to feast, feast, feast, feast for the next several days, as Thanksgiving is almost here. And what better creature to spend it with than America's favorite fat cat, Garfield!

In Garfield's Thanksgiving, Jon invites Garfield's vet to Thanksgiving dinner in an attempt to woo her, but Jon being Jon, has a challenging time of it. Leave it to beloved Grandma Arbuckle to save the day!

This special is a lot of fun, and a fine way to get into the Thanksgiving spirit. Just as fine wine is paired with food, I recommend pairing this with tonight's broadcast of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving on ABC. Then again, everything goes great with Peanuts.

Enjoy, and Happy Thanksgiving!

But wait, what's this?

Christmas time is here, happiness and cheer. And I say God bless it! Stay tuned, for when I return, it's officially Christmas here at Me and You! See you then!

Monday, November 19, 2018

Bugs Bunny's Thanksgiving Diet

Guys--we're just three days away from the 2018 holiday season. Threeeeee daaaaaays. It's early, but so what? Let's get into it!

Our entrance into the holiday season as always is Thanksgiving. Although the past decade or so it's been treated as "Christmas Lite," for me it's best to celebrate it, at least for that one day, as a day unto itself. A day to spend in the company of loved ones, good cheer--and great food. However, even on Thanksgiving it's best not to go overboard, and there is an expert to help us with that--Bugs Bunny!

In Bugs Bunny's Thanksgiving Diet, Bugs shows us how to pace ourselves on Turkey Day, with the help of his Looney Tunes friends in classic, if edited, vignettes of the past, interspersed among new animation. I've noted in the past that the Looney Tunes prime time specials aren't quite the classics that Rankin/Bass and Peanuts specials are, but in the days before Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network, Gen X kids took their cartoons where they could get them.


Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Stan Lee, 1922-2018

I suspected for a while this was coming, but that doesn't mean it doesn't hurt when it happens.

I loved Stan Lee. Loved the man. I loved his bravado, his charisma, his corny sense of humor--his corny sense of everything--and most of all, I loved his co-creations. He will remain in my heart forever just for co-creating Spider-Man alone. Throw in the Hulk, Thor, X-Men, Black Panther, Daredevil, Doctor Strange, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man--it's ridiculous the amount of story that came from his pen.

He most certainly didn't do all this alone, as Stan naysayers will be quick to admit. The artists wrote the stories as much as Stan did, but that in no way belittles Stan's creativity and accomplishments. Stan's personality is all over those characters, and that should never be forgotten. And no one--no one--was a bigger cheerleader for the comic book industry than Stan "The Man." No one comes close. He made you feel welcome to this wacky, wonderful world of comics--everyone was invited. Even people who never held a comic knew exactly who Stan Lee was; Stan made sure of that.

On my Mount Rushmore of creative people who have affected my life so strongly, there are Walt Disney, Jim Henson, Charles Schulz--and Stan Lee.

The world is better for his being in it.

Rest in peace, Stan.


Friday, November 9, 2018

"The Voice of the Turkey," Harvey Films (1950)

Thanksgiving is less than two weeks away, so it's not inappropriate for me to present this cartoon. "The Voice of the Turkey," produced by defunct cartoon studio Harvey Films in 1950, features a game of cat and mouse between human and turkey on Thanskgiving. There is running, there is ax grinding, there is cartoon slapstick. Plus, it stars Arnold Stang as voice of the turkey, so you can't go wrong.

I have a surprising wealth of Thanksgiving material at the blog; simply search the term "Thanksgiving" in the search bar at the top of the page or click the tag in the "May I Help You Find Something" section to the right. Some video links are broken, but if you leave a comment requesting me to repost it, I'll be happy to do so.

Enjoy! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

McDonaldland Playground Advertising Film, 1972

Ah, the McDonaldland playground. Many a child of the 70s and early 80s has fond memories of playing in this burger-inspired wonderland. Or perhaps they scraped their knee or broke a bone there. Nevertheless, playing in the McDonaldland playground was a required Generation X childhood activity. Although many locations still have some sort of play area for kids, they're not nearly as elaborate and ornate as the playgrounds of yore.

The following is a promotional film made by a company called SetMakers, the original manufacturer of the playground equipment. This film was sent to McDonald's franchisees to entice them to improve their restaurants' sales via the McDonaldland playground attraction. This was made in 1972, and I have to say, the playground depicted in the film is the most elaborate I've ever seen!

Of course, SetMakers put their best foot forward in trying to sell as much of their equipment as possible, but franchisees were allowed to order as many or as few of the attractions as they wanted, so if you were of age to experience a McDonaldland playground, your experience may not have been as grand as the one demonstrated in this film.

I visit McDonald's all the time, but I really wish they still had these playgrounds. I'd squeeze my old butt on them today!


Sunday, November 4, 2018

Holiday Movie Preview 2018

Even though we haven't completed our first full week of November yet, many eyes and ears are already focused on the holiday season. From Christmas TV commercials already airing to new holiday music hitting stores and streaming services, the holly and the ivy are already hanging everywhere. The local movie multiplex is no exception. Here are some new holiday movies coming to a theater near you!

The first new holiday movie is already playing: The Nutcracker and the Four Realms. This new take on the classic story is a a special effects-laden spectacle, possibly the biggest production of it we've seen so far. Starring Morgan Freeman and Kiera Knightly among others, The Nutcracker and the Four Realms is playing in theaters now.

Opening this Friday November 9th, a new animated version of The Grinch debuts. This long-awaited version stars Benedict Cumberbatch as the titular Mean One.

On Friday November 16th, Harry Potter fans will enjoy the latest installment in the prequel series, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. Eddie Redmayne returns to the series and is joined by Jude Law and Johnny Depp.

Another sequel hotly anticipated is Ralph Breaks the Internet, with John C. Reilly and Sarah Silverman. Ralph returns to wreck it on Wednesday, November 21st.

Marvel fans awaiting the return of Spider-Man from the grave, or wherever he went to at the end of a certain flick, can take some comfort from the new animated film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, featuring Peter Parker, Miles Morales, Gwen Stacy, and a host of other Spider characters. Spider-Verse swings into theaters Friday, December 14th.

Just a few days later, Mary Poppins Returns. 50 years in the making, this sequel stars Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda, and opens Wednesday, December 19th.

Lastly for theaters, both Aquaman and Bumblebee grace theaters Friday, December 21st. Aquaman stars Jason Mamoa and Amber Heard, while Bumblebee stars Hailee Steinfeld and Justin Thoreox.

Not to be outdone, Netflix has a few holiday films in its queue. One such example is The Holiday Calendar, in which a young woman inherits an Advent calendar from her grandmother, which seems to hold magical power. The Holiday Calendar is now streaming.

On Thanksgiving Day, November 22, Santa comes early in the form of Kurt Russell in The Christmas Chronicles.

Finally, on Friday, November 30th, Netflix debuts a sequel to their surprisingly successful holiday film of last yea,r A Christmas Prince, with A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding. Rose McIver and Ben Lamb return to their previous roles in this Christmas charmer.

Clearly we have a lot of viewing to do this holiday season. Enjoy, and thanks!

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Happy Halloween 2018!

All good things must come to an end; this is no less true of the Countdown to Halloween.

I want to thank John Rozum for organizing the Countdown for yet another year on his own. I also wish to thank all the Countdown contributors who bring us amazing content all month long. I'm honored to be a part of such "spirited" company!

Thank you most of all to you readers for making this season a great one. We've had laughs, scares, and of course, candy--at least we'll have candy tonight, anyway. The Countdown is the biggest season of the year for this blog, so I genuinely appreciate all the support you give me. Don't be a stranger. I post the best stuff I can find all year long and as my time allows. 

Please give the blog some shares on your social media; I really appreciate it. Of course, if you want to give the blog's advertisers a try, I won't complain. I'll leave up the Halloween "decorations" on the blog for the next few days and take a short break. I hope to return to the blog next Monday looking forward to the great month of November and beyond. I'm sure most revelers will keep the party going through the weekend anyway.

Be safe, have fun, and most of all--HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

The Real Haddonfield of Halloween--Haddonfield, New Jersey!

Halloween night is tomorrow! The season is almost over! I'm running out of material! I'd better hurry!

Everyone knows that the fictional town of Haddonfield, Illinois is the home of the season's number one killer, Michael Myers, but what some might not know is that the town is influenced by a real life Haddonfield--Haddonfield, New Jersey, childhood home of Halloween producer and co-writer, the late Debra Hill.

It just so happens that I live right by the town; I drive through it all the time. If you were to see it, you would think you stepped right into Haddonfield, Illinois from the film (minus the errant palm tree that creeps into a shot here and there). In fact, you can see for yourself. I took some very brief footage (only a minute's worth) for you to get a glimpse of the real Haddonfield. 

Do you think it resembles the movie version? Please let me know in the comments.


Monday, October 29, 2018

ABC Saturday Superstar Movie: The Mini Munsters

Three days left! Augh! We can't waste time! Let's get to it!

Today I present an episode of the ABC Saturday Superstar Movie, "The Mini Munsters." This was an unsold pilot for a Saturday morning series that the network burned off as an episode of this anthology series. Sadly, only Al Lewis reprises his role from the live action series for this animated pilot. Curiously, Eddie is now a rebellious teenager instead of a mostly-obedient young child.

Great thanks to the Saturday Morning Cartoons Twitter feed for letting me know that this special existed!


Friday, October 26, 2018

Halloween: A Cut Above the Rest

The last weekend of Halloween is here. Dude, we have to get our party on big time. And I can't think of a better way to do it than--watch a documentary movie about a fictional movie.

What, you say? You're featuring a documentary on a Halloween weekend?

This isn't a documentary about moose migration or something like that (apologies if that's your thing though). This is a popular documentary about my favorite horror movie of all time (after Jaws)--Halloween. It's called Halloween: A Cut Above The Rest.

Halloween is back in the public consciousness in a huge way due to its 40th anniversary and the release of the new sequel (which is doing extremely well). Although I likely won't be able to take in the new flick before the big night, I've been celebrating the franchise's anniversary by re-watching the films from the first to H20 (maybe I'll catch Resurrection and the Zombie films next year). Someday I'll write a missive about how the very first film scarred me to the core for life, but that will have to be another article for another Countdown.

"Making of" documentaries of Halloween are a dime a dozen, but Cut is considered the best. Give it a watch and learn to appreciate how a masterpiece is made.

Enjoy! Have a great Halloween weekend! Be safe and have fun!

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Thursday's Underappreciated Music: Halloween Tunes!

The month is winding down, and when that happens--and I think of it--it's time for the month's Underappreciated Music. And what better music to showcase in October than those tunes which relate to the most famous date of the month, the 31st? Even if only loosely related, that is.

Here is a short set of haunting hits to drink pumpkin beer by. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Boo! Syndicated TV Special, 1982

Today's feature is very obscure, but the great TV footage refuge that is the Museum of Classic Chicago Television comes through once again with the 1982 syndicated-in-America TV special Boo!

Boo! was a TV variety special produced by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and first aired on Sunday, October 26, 1980 on that network. In 1982, this special somehow found its way to a US TV syndicate and aired in various markets that October. The special is pure comedy and music, and although produced as late as 1980, it reeks of 1970s variety show tackiness. Which, to me, isn't necessarily a bad thing!

 I remember coming home from trick-or-treating on Halloween night in 1982 (if the date of this airing is any indication) and finding my parents watching the opening number on KYW Channel 3 in Philadelphia and thinking "OK, this is interesting."

Here the special is presented in the Chicago market by WGN Channel 9. Be warned:  there is a heavy cheese factor here, as the special is full of kooky one-liners and sight gags. If you don't have a tolerance for 1970s-style variety specials, you may want to sit this one out.

Otherwise, enjoy!

Friday, October 19, 2018

My Mom's A Werewolf (1989)

It's Movie Friday, and this week it's--My Mom's A Werewolf!

A single mom is bitten by a werewolf while on a date and receives the curse herself. She tries to hide her "condition" from her family, but the curse gets the best of her. Her kids do their best to get her help, and family-style horror and hilarity ensue.

Hardcore horror fans will likely pass on this one, but it's a fine film for families.

Enjoy! Have a great spooky weekend!

Thursday, October 18, 2018

It's Magic, Charlie Brown

DVR ALERT! Tonight is this season's first showing of It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown at 8pm ET/PT on ABC! It will also air next Friday, October 26th at 8pm ET/PT along with You're Not Elected, Charlie Brown. Watch it both times! Then watch it on DVD! Then replay it in your head!

In honor of the special's airing, I present another Peanuts special that isn't Halloween-related, but it's pretty close. It's Magic, Charlie Brown first aired April 28, 1981, and features Snoopy picking up magic as a new hobby, causing trouble for Charlie Brown. Snoopy turns ol' Chuck invisible and can't change him back! Magic run amok--that's pretty scary!

Warner Bros. Home Video, which currently owns the home video distribution rights to the Peanuts specials, agrees with me. This special is currently featured as a bonus on the latest edition of Great Pumpkin on DVD.


Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Dracula's Night Out

Today's feature is an amateur-made short film titled Dracula's Night Out. The Count sneaks to modern-day American suburbia to feast on his latest victim; what he finds is someone quite different than who he expected.

The film is only 5 minutes, but it's an amusing little treat perfect for the Halloween season.


Halloween night is only two weeks from today! Enjoy it while it lasts!

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

The Hilarious House of Frightenstein

Today's offering is bit international--well, Canadian, anyway. Today I offer the first episode of the Canadian children's series The Hilarious House of Frightenstein.

Frightenstein was created by an independent TV station in Hamilton, Ontario and syndicated throughout Canada and the US. It featured a wisecracking vampire, his inept assistant, a werewolf who was also a radio DJ, and many other human and puppet characters. Although aimed at children and intended to be educational, the series had an adult sense of self-awareness, not unlike Soupy Sales' series in America.

Coincidentally enough, each episode had an introduction by none other than--Vincent Price! Three Price articles in a row!


Monday, October 15, 2018

Vincent Price, Halloween Thriller (1984)

I'm kicking off Week 3 of the Countdown to Halloween in a similar way I closed out Week 2--by featuring work of the late, great Vincent Price. Because you can't get enough Vincent, can you? Instead of a movie, however, I'm featuring a TV project.

In 1984, Price hosted a one-hour syndicated TV special called Halloween Thriller. This special included Price, capitalizing off of his legendary collaboration with Michael Jackson, hosting an hour of music videos with his spooky intros between them. The strangest thing about this special, however, is that most videos didn't have a Halloween or spooky theme, or at least only in the loosest way possible. But hey, a Halloween TV special is a Halloween TV special!

Unfortunately, the program itself is nowhere to be found on the Web, so I'm posting the next best thing: the first video consists of outtakes of Price recording his intros; the second video is a collection of commercials that appeared during the program, with snippets of Price's intros thrown in.

I would have loved to have featured the entire program, but even patchwork Vincent Price is better than no Price at all.


Friday, October 12, 2018

Vincent Price, Theatre of Blood (1973)

Say goodbye to Week 2 of the Countdown to Halloween. It's crunch time, folks. Hang the last of the decorations up and get the last of the materials for your costume now before it's too late! And also check out more great Halloween blogs at the official site of the Countdown!

Being Friday, it's movie time once again, and this week I have a good one--the 1973 Vincent Price vehicle Theatre of Blood!

Price plays Shakespearean actor Edward Lionheart (how's that for a name?), who becomes enraged with jealousy when he feels slighted by many well-respected critics. He therefore does the only understandable thing an actor of his caliber would do--he murders the critics one by one in gruesome ways, often in ways that mirror happenings in Shakespeare's plays. Can anyone stop this homicidal Hamlet? The film also stars Diana Rigg (The Avengers, Game of Thrones).

Tune in and see. Enjoy! Have a great weekend! Patronize my advertisers!

Thursday, October 11, 2018

The Flintstones, "The Gruesomes"

I haven't posted a cartoon this week yet--time to rectify that. Today, I present episode 9 of season 5 of The Flintstones, "The Gruesomes."

The Gruesomes are the new neighbors in Bedrock, right next door to Fred and Wilma. In the spirit of the Addams Family, the Gruesomes "do what they wanna do, say what they wanna say," in the most prehistorically creepy way possible. Unsurprisingly, the Flintstones and Rubbles don't quite know what to think of their new neighbors, but you readers will certainly welcome them to your computers and mobile devices with fiendish glee.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein Bloopers

We are now in double-digit dates in October. Normally I would say today is the day to get serious about celebrating Halloween--but not this year.

This year, we're going to get funny about it, as we enjoy these hilarious bloopers from the making of one of my favorite monster movies, Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein. It's the most perfect blend of comedy greats and movie monsters ever created, and I love these looks from behind the scenes.


Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Halloween Episodes of Happy Days

Due to circumstances beyond my control, I was unable to post an article for the Countdown to Halloween yesterday. To make up for it, today I offer not one, but TWO TV episodes of Halloween goodness.

They are both from one of my favorite series, Happy Days. In the first episode, "Haunted," Ralph throws a Halloween party in an old house rumored to be, well, haunted. Will Richie get over his fear to attend his friend's monster mash?

In the second episode, "The Evil Eyes," a witch (of sorts) puts a curse on diner owner Al, or more specifically his right arm, to do her evil bidding. You know, the classic story. "Yeah, yeah yeah yeah yeah."


Friday, October 5, 2018

"Vampire," ABC TV-Movie (1979)

And just like that, Week 1 of the 2018 Countdown to Halloween has concluded. But fear not! We still have three and a half weeks or mirth and mayhem left, so put your fangs on and party!

Just like I did last year, I'm going to feature full-length movies every Friday for you to enjoy over the weekend. This week, our Friday feature is the 1979 TV-movie Vampire.

Many under the age of 40 may not remember, but original movies made for broadcast TV were a weekly event for each network, and these movies spanned all kinds of genres, and horror was no exception. Despite the content limitations due to the broadcast censors, many well-made horror films were produced directly for the tube. Hopefully, Vampire fits the bill for you.

Vampire stars veteran actor Richard Lynch as a vampire whose slumber is disturbed by the construction of a new church (isn't it ironic, dontcha think?). He tries to make the best of it by living off his family's wealth, but when that is confiscated, the vampire goes on a tear.

The movie also starts E.G. Marshall ("Art" from National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation) and was co-written by the late Steven Bochco.

Let's see how things turn out. Enjoy! Have a great first weekend of October! Visit a haunted attraction! Make bat wing cookies! Drink a pumpkin latte! Or beer! Or both!

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Drak Pack (1980)

Today's offering is an episode of the 1980 Saturday morning cartoon series Drak Pack.

Drak Pack consisted of three seemingly normal teenagers who were in fact descendants of classic monsters. Led by Count Dracula (referred to as "Big D" by the cast), the three teens would go on missions to stop a villainous band of monsters known as O.G.R.E--the Organization for Generally Rotten Enterprises--from causing worldwide havoc.

Oh, did I mention that the teens had the power to turn into monsters themselves? Yes they did. See above for the results.

The show only lasted one season, the fall of 1980, but I found it amusing enough as a kid to watch. When you're six years old, "amusing enough" usually is all you need.

This episode is also featured on Dinosaur Dracula's side blog Dino Drac After Dark. If you don't know about that site, you really need to get acquainted with it.


Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Halloween TV Commercials 2018 Edition

Today marks my annual look at TV commercials that are somehow related to Halloween or other spooky or creepy themes. These are some of my favorite blog posts not only for the Countdown, but in general! They're always a lot of fun to curate. Let's get to it!

First up, it's King Kong versus the Energizer Bunny. My money's on the bunny!

In this spot, Ray Ban sunglasses are clearly inspired by the Twilight trend.

Sticking with the vampire theme, even they need a vacation now and then, and Bing is apparently their search engine of choice.

I've featured McDonald's commercials for Halloween several times over the years, but here's an interesting one from the UK rather than the States. Ronald and his kid friends check out a spooky old house. The scariest thing may be Ronald himself!

Those of you who were kids in the 90s may have fond memories of this Halloweeny toy--Big Frank!

In this brand new commercial for 2018, IHOP presents it's fall menu, complete with pumpkin pancakes. Even the pumpkins themselves are excited. Wait, what?

Finally, this is my favorite of the bunch. Classic monsters are riding a commuter train on their way to work--as one does--and discuss improving their communications by joining Spectrum Cable!

If I find more great commercials I'll post them later this month. Thanks!

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Walt Disney Company, "DTV: Monster Hits" (1987)

To kick off the Countdown in full swing, today I offer the 1987 TV special "DTV: Monster Hits!"

In the 80s, Disney created a limited number of specials under the brand DTV, which showcased classic Disney animation set to popular hit songs (just like MTV, you see). This particular installment consists of scary/spooky-themed animation set to music from the Eurythmics, Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, and others. This special aired on NBC on October 30, 1987.


Monday, October 1, 2018

Welcome to the 2018 Countdown to Halloween!

Ladies and gentlemen, let the 2018 Countdown to Halloween begin!

That'll wake you up!

Hello one and all to this year's Countdown. Whether you're a years-long reader or brand new to the blog, I welcome you with open wings--bat wings, that is. Every Monday through Friday from now through the Big Day, I'll feature the best spooky/creepy/scary/Halloweeny stuff I can find. Of course, you can find so much more at the event's main site here. Please visit as many sites as you can, and be sure to leave comments noting your appreciation.

As always, I offer little bits of spookiness on Day 1 to warm you up and prepare you for the month ahead. Please enjoy, and thank you for spending Halloween at Me and You and a Blog Named Boo!

Monday, September 17, 2018

TV Commercials from October 26, 1984

Today I offer an 8-minute medley of some awesome commercials that aired on CBS on October 26, 1984, between the premiere airing of Garfield in the Rough (memories of which escape me) and the Halloween perennial, It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.

When such specials took over prime time, kids felt special themselves; choice TV real estate normally devoted to adults was now the terrain of kids, and we loved it! Even the commercials were evidence that this was our time. Some great examples here include ones for McDonald's Happy Meals, Frosted Flakes, a fantastic one for Bubble Yum bubble gum (clearly inspired by the video for the Cars song "You Might Think"), and, being just a few days before Halloween, an ad for Paas Halloween Make-Up Kits. This set instantly takes me back.

Speaking of Halloween, I should note that the 2018 Countdown to Halloween starts two weeks from today! Consider this an ever-so-slight teaser for the celebration.


Friday, September 14, 2018

Atari 2600 Commercials Featuring Pac-Man and Others

I have a genuine Atari 2600 video game system that I've been wanting to hook up in my living room for the longest time, and I'm hoping this is the month! As inspiration to myself, and for your entertainment, here are a few classic TV commercials for the system and select games, a few of which promote Pac-Man (including a "live action" Ms. Pac-Man). Both JC Penney and Target feature in this collection, as they both offer special deals on the system. The commercial for MegaForce features future Emmy winner Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad)!

Finally, I've posted the Spider-Man commercial several times before, but I can't help posting it again. I love it!

Enjoy! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Kids Are People Too

My offering for you today is the late 70s/early 80s children's TV series Kids Are People Too.

Kids Are People Too was a variety series aimed at preteens and teens that ran on ABC Sunday mornings from 1978 to 1982. It was a revamped version of a previous series called Wonderama, which aired locally in New York City and was aimed at younger children. The revamped version featured celebrity interviews as well as discussions of serious topics with noted experts on topics in the interest of teens. The show also featured musical performances.

Below are segments featuring some of the biggest celebrities of the time, such as Ron Howard, KISS, Mark Hamill, Debbie Harry, and Brooke Shields. The final clip features the end credits and a promo for the next week's show, including Stan Lee as a guest (a segment I remember watching as a kid and was hoping to showcase here, but I can't find it). 

The show reappeared for the 1986-87 season in syndication, but went back into obscurity after that.


Monday, September 10, 2018

Early Flintstones Pebbles Cereal Commercials

I've always been a fan of The Flintstones, but I've never been a big consumer of the show's breakfast cereals, Fruity and Coco Pebbles. I have, however, always enjoyed the fun commercials for the cereal.  The following commercials, however, are a bit before my time and, well, kind of weird.

These commercials involve Bedrock citizens developing bizarre conditions from lack of Pebbles Cereal, still images in place of animation, breaking the fourth wall to show children the factories in which the cereals are made, and other craziness that I simply don't remember in any Pebbles commercials I remember seeing as a kid.

I've had these commercials in my queue for a long time, and I'm happy to finally present them to you.

Enjoy! Yabba dabba doo!

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Donald Duck in Mathmagic Land

Continuing our back to school transition, today we travel with Donald Duck to Mathmagic Land, where Donald learns the importance of math in our everyday lives and the world around us.

I love these side projects of Disney that, sadly, you never get to see anymore. Their feature-length movies are wonderful, but they did a great deal of short form projects that demonstrate as much artistry and care as the big features. I love coming across stuff like this.


Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Teen Titans GO! Back to School!

Welcome back to school everyone! Summer is over--at least the part that counts--and everyone is back to school, work, or whatever their normal grind is. I hope your summer was a fantastic one!

To formally put the summer behind us and get our minds focused on our studies, I propose we clear the cobwebs from our minds with help from--Teen Titans GO! Although the show gets a lot of grief from fans who prefer other versions of the team, I love this incarnation of the characters.

In this 20-minute extravaganza, the team taps into their school spirit to learn, teach, and dance. Enjoy!