Today's News: Our Take


Question: I know this is a ...

Question: I know this is a trivial trivia question, but it has driven me crazy for years. Back in the late '50s or '60s, Tom Tryon, better known as a writer, acted and starred in a Western program. Do you know the name of that Western? It drives me crazy, as I said. Please help!

Televisionary: Sounds to me like you're thinking of Texas John Slaughter, a Walt Disney serial produced from 1958-61 in an attempt to recreate the success enjoyed by Davy Crockett. Tryon, who did indeed become an author (he wrote as Thomas Tryon) after giving up the acting game, played the real-life marshal.

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Friends Star's Running Joke


TV aficionados best know Adam Goldberg as Eddie, Chandler's roomie for three episodes in Season Two of Friends. Moviegoers most often know him from Saving Private Ryan and Dazed and Confused. But he's nowhere near as famous as NBC's charmed sitcom sextet — and he likes it that away.

"If I were an ounce more famous, I couldn't handle it," Goldberg tells TV Guide Online. "Which is not to say I'm that famous, but when you get unexpected attention, it can be disconcerting. A lot of times I get, 'Are you an actor?' I used to be much more polite with that than I am now. I can no longer actually go down the list of things I've been in, like, 'Do you like serious war movies or are you a sitcom fan?' I used to try to help them place me!

"But the other night in a bar," he sighs, "I was just like, 'I've been doing this 12 years. Have a nice night.'"

At least the surrealness of life as a semi read more

HE'S SORT OF SORRY

Baseball Hall of Fame president Dale Petroskey issued a backhanded apology to Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon on Friday. Petroskey — who nixed a Bull Durham celebration due to the couple's anti-war rhetoric — admitted he should've called the actors last week before canceling the event. Robbins responded by saying, "I appreciate Petroskey's non-apology apology." read more

EVERYBODY WILL MISS RAYMOND

Ray Romano continues to hint that next season may be Everybody Loves Raymond's last. At a Tiger Woods Foundation event over the weekend, the Emmy winner was asked how he keeps his sitcom fresh and original after eight years. His response? "You stop after one more year." Heaps of cash might also do the trick. read more

OHMYGAWD! WHERE DID YOUR HAIR GO?

Twentieth Television is producing a syndicated series based on the popular Classmates.com website. The show — slated to debut this summer — reunites former classmates who went from being pretty and popular to butt-ugly and despised. At least that's the version I want to see. read more

7th Heaven's Wedded Bliss


Pre-marital whoopee is discouraged on 7th Heaven, which celebrates its 150th episode tonight (8 pm/ET on the WB). Sure, some of Rev. Camden's kids are fornicating sinners, but not Lucy (Beverley Mitchell). No, the virginal college coed chooses to abstain until she and fiancé Kevin (George Stults) are married. Hell, she won't even look at him shirtless! But why?

"She wants to become a minister," Mitchell tells TV Guide Online, "so she holds very true to her values." Adds Stults: "Kevin's been married before, so I guess he's damaged goods!"

Tonight, Heaven gets these two hitched, so they can safely answer their carnal imperatives within the bonds of wedlock. (Of course, that part probably happens off-screen, darn it.) Still, is the show sending the wrong message to young fans by having Lucy marry before finishing college? Says Mitchell: "I think if a couple is truly in read more

Law & Order Star's Sassy Secret!


As precinct lieutenant Anita Van Buren on Law & Order, S. Epatha Merkerson delivers what little dialogue she gets with enough 'tude to make the most hardened criminal soil his orange jumpsuit. But if we were to someday follow Van Buren home — a concept unthinkable in the all-work/no-play L&O universe — Merkerson believes viewers would see her alter ego's smart-ass quotient quadruple!

"I think Van Buren has a sassy side that we don't know yet," the 50-year-old actress tells TV Guide Online. "I think that there would be some very colorful things happening if we were able to see that side of her. There is this whole other person that you only get a glimpse of."

That's true in the physical sense as well. Although Merkerson concedes that L&O producers have made some strides in livening up her drab wardrobe, the artist formerly known as Pee-wee's Mail Lady is anx read more

HOPE SPRINGS ETERNAL

More than a dozen pop stars, including Paul McCartney, George Michael and Avril Lavigne, have recorded an album to raise money for child war victims in Iraq. The CD, titled Hope, contains 18 tracks and arrives in stores today. read more

SHE'S BACK

Kelly Ripa returned to Live with Regis and Kelly today following a two month-long maternity leave and unveiled what Reege called "a new body and a new hairdo." Translation: She's got bigger boobs and longer bangs. And as expected, she didn't let her poor co-host get a word in edgewise. read more

CAN YOU DIG IT?

Moviegoers dug new family flick Holes, which debuted at No. 2 at the box office over the weekend with a better-than-expected $17.1 million. Nearly half of the film's audience was over 18, surprising insiders who predicted the movie would play only to kids. Anger Management, meanwhile, maintained its No. 1 position for the second consecutive weekend. The Adam Sandler-Jack Nicholson comedy grossed another $25.6 million, bringing its 10-day total to $80.3 million. Rounding out the top five: Jamie Kennedy's hip-hop parody Malibu's Most Wanted (No. 3 with $13.1 million), martial-arts comedy Bulletproof Monk (No. 4 with $8.6 million) and Phone Booth (No. 5 with $5.7 million). read more

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