Answering queries about 'Restaurant: Impossible' and Sarah Jessica Parker
Rich Heldenfels answers readers' questions.
Q: I used to enjoy watching Robert Irvine try to save failing restaurants in “Restaurant: Impossible.” But I haven’t seen any new shows on the Food Network in a long time. What happened?
A: The series ended its long run on the Food Network in 2016, around the time Irvine announced plans to do a syndicated series described as a “daytime conflict resolution talker.” You can read more about that project at therobertirvineshow.com.
Q: Whenever I read about Sarah Jessica Parker’s movie career, I wonder why the movie “Somewhere Tomorrow” is never mentioned. She starred in it, maybe in the early 80s, with a young actor by the name of Tom Shea. It was a sweet movie and she played her part quite well. Do you know why it is never mentioned?
A: I don’t know about “never.” Her biography on the Turner Classic Movies website, for one, says, “In 1983, Parker took the lead as a teen coping with the death of her mother in the emotionally wrenching ‘Somewhere Tomorrow,’ which led to her casting as bookish beanpole Patty Greene on the above average sitcom ‘Square Pegs’ (CBS, 1982-83).” And the film has found its way to DVD, both in legal and bootleg form. But Parker’s career that has lasted more than 40 years and has included some famous productions, so an early work is less likely to stand out when people revisit her resume.
Q: Will we see any more episodes of “The Durrells in Corfu”? It was truly enchanting!
A: Also known as just “The Durrells,” the series inspired by author Gerald Durrell’s charming memoirs has led to a second season and plans for a third. The second season begins overseas telecasts on April 23, but it’s not clear when it will land on U.S. TV.
Q: Are there DVDs of the old TV show “Baa Baa Black Sheep” with Robert Conrad?
A: The World War II drama with Conrad playing real-life combat veteran Gregory “Pappy” Boyington, ran for three seasons on NBC from 1976 to 1978, with the title changed to “Black Sheep Squadron” for what proved to be the final season. There was also a two-hour pilot. Several years ago, the pilot and the first season’s episodes were released in two DVD sets. The final season has also been released. And the first season will be reissued in a new DVD set in June.
And now let’s solve some other viewing mysteries.
Q: I am 58. When I was 7, 8 or 9 there was a show on network television, at least I think it was a show, it could have been a movie. I think it was called “The Immortals” or something similar. There were three main characters, two men and a woman. Each had a “super” power, such as telepathy. I have looked and searched, but I couldn’t find anything about this. It would have to have been on between ‘64 and ‘68, I’m guessing. Do you know anything about it?
A: I found, and you verified, that the show was “The Champions,” an adventure series that aired on NBC in 1968. According to “The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows,” it involved “three international crime fighters with special ‘powers’ … given to them by members of an unknown race from a lost civilization deep in the wastelands of Tibet.” The cast included Stuart Damon, Alexandra Bastedo and William Gaunt – and yes, that’s the Stuart Damon from “General Hospital.”
Q: Several years ago, my son and I watched a movie on AMC from the 1960’s where a guy and his wife ended up in a forbidden pit with some glowing, radioactive, green rocks that affected people mentally when they came into contact with them. In one scene the wife touched one of the rocks, and the man cried out in vain, “No, Letitia, no!” Ever since watching this movie (not in entirety), we’ve been trying to recall the name of the movie, to no avail. I realize this description is vague, but do you have any ideas as to the title of the movie?
A: While there could be more than one glowing-green-rocks-mind-twisting movies, I’m going to say you remember 1965’s “Die, Monster, Die!” (also known as “Monster of Terror” or “House at the End of the World”). The cast included Boris Karloff, Nick Adams – and Freda Jackson as Letitia.
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