Mar. 15th, 2016

ladybug_archive: (nancy_peter)
A couple of weeks ago in Wal-Mart I saw the most awesome playset: a Scooby-Doo haunted mansion! There were trapdoors and ghosties everywhere and a falling chandelier.... I don't have any place to put something like that, but I sure want it. That is epically awesome. It's one of the most creative playsets I've seen in a long time.

There's also a new line of Scooby-Doo figures. For some reason, there's two Scoobies in the line instead of there being a Fred. They'd better still make Fred! All the other original characters were there. Each one comes packaged with one of the supernatural creatures they unmasked on the show. And even though there's two figures and they're around 6 inches tall, they only cost around $7! I so want those, too. So do lots of others; there were three full pegs of those figures two weeks ago, and last week there were only two figures left.

So I had a very interesting and odd Once dream today. It was similar in nature to some LOTR dreams I had years ago, in which I and Mom and other people were acting out the character roles. And there was snow on the ground. I'm not sure why that's a feature of those dreams, but there you go.

I was playing Rumpel (and Regina, apparently, as there weren't enough people for each to take one character). It was around season 2, and the entire cast had been sent to some weird, snowy place with a huge castle. Rumpel was walking with Belle and they were talking about the problems in their relationship. They seemed to be at a rocky stage. One gave the other some kind of native little white flower before they separated. I was having a blast figuring out how to talk with a Scottish accent.

Belle was then walking with one of the girls, and I think I narrowed it down to Ruby. They were talking and seemed to be upset with Mary-Margaret about something, but the details of that conversation have faded. They were climbing up snowy hillsides that were like steps and heading for the castle. Everyone seemed to be going to a funeral, but I don't know who was dead. They walked along the outside of the castle, which weirdly seemed to have different entrances with numbers corresponding to season 2 episodes. Most were bizarre crooked stairs that were at unclimbable angles. They finally found a way up via the stairs marked for episode 2.

Regina was walking down the corridor, heading for the room with the funeral. For some reason, she ended up casting a spell on herself that made her appear as Rumpel to everyone else she passed in the corridor. It was not shape-shifting, like Cora could do, but it was expressly just a spell that warped how everyone else saw her. She got to the room and ... apparently laid down on a low table/slab in front of a row of people. Then she was ... either faking being unconscious or there was some other spell. Everyone thought it was Rumpel and was confused as to why they couldn't wake "him" up. Rumpel was supposed to appear in the doorway and be all "WTH is going on here," and I think he arrived and was trying and failing to get people's attention, and I woke up around then.

A very weird dream. But actually rather enjoyable while it was being had. I woke up missing the good times on Once before the writers decided that Rumpel wasn't allowed to continue his progress being a good guy. I should write some more in my vignette series again.

I wonder if another reason I'm worried about posting it on FF.net is that I'm afraid some people won't like that I'm unhappy with the direction the show took starting with 3B. But there's quite a lot of us who feel the same way, so that probably wouldn't really be much of a problem.

Recently I re-watched the season 3 Mannix episode with Don Knight, another British actor with lovely blond hair. He reminded me a little bit of Christopher, while at the same time definitely being his own person. He played the only survivor of a shipwreck, and he knew the truth about the wreck, that it had been hijacked and everyone else deliberately murdered by being thrown overboard to the sharks. He himself had been permanently mutilated; his left arm was gone and he had a limp. He was being sought after by the bad guys to kill him, but he refused to come forward and tell the police what he knew because they were threatening to kill a girl he loved. In the climax, he discovered that the girl was actually one of the bad guys. Heartbroken, in a moment of rage he started choking her, but Mannix rushed in and stopped him. When he calmed down, he insisted that the girl must have been coerced into being a part of things, because she was just too sweet to really be bad. The girl told him that she hadn't been coerced, that she wanted to be there because the Big Bad saw her as she really was instead of putting her on a pedestal. It was heartbreaking, gah. The guy didn't have anyone else in the world and he lost the one person he thought cared about him. Mom wondered if he might end up committing suicide, feeling like he had nothing left, but I hope not. Maybe I will write something about him and see what he's up to.

I remember liking that character and the actor before, but I didn't follow up on it. I wanted to this time, but I didn't get around to it until I discovered him in a Hawaii 5-O episode quite by accident over the weekend. That time the character was a bad guy, but he was in danger being kidnapped by the psycho Big Bad of the episode and I hoped the taskforce would save him in time. They did, and I decided to look up the actor. He had turned out an amazing performance and had broke down in hysteria because he was terrified of heights. So very different from the Mannix character. Like all good character actors, he really slips into whatever part he's got.

I found a list of credits and saw that I have one of his Virginian episodes, so I watched that this morning. He was a bad guy again, but he survived the episode. It was a pretty depressing episode, though, called The Mustangers. I don't think I want to get into it right now, but it seems like many season 7 Virginian episodes are depressing. I remember that while many season 6 episodes were high drama, they generally seemed to end well. I'm not sure what was up with the seeming change.

I also found a website run by Don Knight's son, which is awesome. I'm going to go back there and see if there's a way to contact the son. And I'll probably keep looking up his father's credits; I think one of his Charlie's Angels episodes is already on one of the discs I put on the queue.

Don Knight sounds like a sweet man in reality and I know I definitely loved his Mannix character. Apparently he also played a beloved character on Little House on the Prairie, so if I end up deciding I like him enough to make him one of my darlings, finally there will actually be one of them who has appeared on that show. Heh. I've always wondered why none of them ever guest-starred on that. Or at least if any have, IMDB doesn't have a record of it (which is possible).

His character on that has a very famous and tragic death. He works with dynamite, and he's watching some contest that includes his friends Charles and another guy. When they win, he's so excited for them that he doesn't remember he has a lit dynamite fuse that he was dealing with.

They invited Don Knight back for another episode as a different character, but when he got there they paid him and then fired him. They felt that his character's death had been so poignant that the audience would not accept him as another character.

...

Is it just me or was that a really lame and jerky thing to do? Once they hired him for the episode, they should have followed through with it. And isn't it just a little bit arrogant to think that their show's character death is so powerful that he could never return as someone else? I've watched lots of shows with powerful oneshot character deaths, and very often the actor will be allowed to return later as another character. I never see any problem with that.

Also, speaking of his character's death, it just sounds so pointless and needless that to me it almost seems like they killed off the character for the sheer shock and tragedy factor. Unless the episode was based on something Laura Ingalls Wilder really wrote about as having happened, it seems to me it should not have been done that way. I don't like character deaths that are pointless and needless and exist just so they can point to their show and say, "Look how dark and gritty we made it! It's some kind of artistic achievement!"

And as a closing note, eerily enough, Don Knight follows the pattern of being someone I saw in something many years ago. Apparently he was in The Apple Dumpling Gang. I actually wasn't crazy about that movie; I'd gone in looking for a hysterical comedy and it honestly didn't strike me as being very funny in most parts. The big funny scene seemed to be where Don Knotts' character was being accidentally choked by a rope up the side of a building, which ... really isn't very funny. But maybe if I go back to it and watch it not looking for anything specific, I'd like it.

I know it's stupid, but it still kind of troubles me that I can't think of anything I saw Christopher Cary in many years ago. He's the one darling that doesn't fit the pattern. I did see him on Rockford before I was interested in him, and I did like him, so I figure I've got to accept that as the time I saw him years ago. But it wasn't in the long-ago past, like all the others. I keep thinking there must be something I saw him in years ago and that someday I'll pinpoint what it was.

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