Regis Francis Xavier Philbin, elfin television presenter and former sidekick of Rat Packer Joey Bishop, exited the closed set of our world on July 24th at the tender age of 88. Regis was unique in that he was genuinely beloved by a broad range of people, and was an ebullient, welcome presence on the small screen for literally decades.
I am now in the unique position of confessing that in 1996, I secretly attempted to form a cult around him.
The mid-1980’s Twilight Zone was actually really good. It had an appropriately creepy vibe right from the start, aided greatly by the reinterpretation of the classic theme music, courtesy of Merl Saunders and the Grateful Dead.
I don’t care what your agenda, politics, cause or reasons are. I don’t want to hear about sequels, prequels, reboots or recasts. I don’t care who’s offended, what’s offensive, or problematic, or should be cancelled.
I don’t want the following movies fucked with. Ever.
Mark my words. As soon as it becomes feasible, the father will be erased from the family unit forever. The word and the concept will be abolished and nullified. You can bet your life savings on it happening in the next five years.
There’s an itch that rap music scratches that no other kind of music does. For this reason, I have a longstanding love-hate relationship with the genre. But the fact remains; I always come back to it. Once I realized I was listening to it alone, when there was no one around to impress, I figured I enjoyed the form enough to jabber about it sincerely.
Of course I was spoiled growing up. We didn’t just have The Muppet Show (and Fraggle Rock!) on TV- we knew the name of the man who brought the Muppets to life; Jim Henson. We even knew that the man who voiced “Miss Piggy”, Frank Oz, guest-starred in one of the biggest sequels of all time, as a little green alien called “Yoda”.
Oh, and that sequel? We all knew whose baby it was. George Lucas. His film-school buddy Steven Spielberg was the mastermind behind E.T., Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Jaws, and the classic-styled anthology show Amazing Stories. (Just to name a few.)