Friday, July 22, 2011

Jossin' the Tommyverse

I love television probably more than I should.  I can never seem to remember where I put my car keys but I CAN tell you why Roger Thorpe visited Maureen Bauer's grave in the dead of night on "The Guiding Light."  I find it hard to believe that other people love television more than I do but the people who mapped out the Tommyverse definitely do.  What in the world is the Tommyverse?  Sit down, this may take a while.

Contains Spoilers if you've never seen St. Elsewhere. 

When St. Elsewhere ended in 1988 the final scene indicated that the entire run of the show had taken place inside the mind of Tommy Westphall, the autistic son of Doctor Donald Westphall.  Later Drs. Turner and Erlich appeared on Homicide: Life on the Street, connecting those two universes.  Detective John Munch from Homicide has made appearances on ten different television shows which I guess makes him Character Zero.  This interconnected universe stretches from 1951 (with I Love Lucy) to the present and includes The Cosby Show, the Star Trek franchise, and Dr. Who.  You can check it all out here but be forewarned that it's a timewaster.  (Spooks geek moment:  in Season 8 Episode 6 I spent more time than was really necessary trying to determine if Ryan Baisley was smoking Morleys, the brand favored by The Cigarette Smoking Man from The X-Files and Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, among others.  He wasn't.)

Enter Joss Whedon.  "Jossed" is a Buffyverse fic writer's term for a canon plot development that scraps a fic's plot; if the fans actually named it you can safely assume that it happened a LOT.  Whedon generally kept things in the Tommyverse but he did make a couple of references to The X-Files in Buffy and Angel.  Did he Joss the Tommyverse?  Probably not, but dude, his name is a verb.  Oh, and he's writing and directing The Avengers so anything in Captain America that might have seemed final is probably fair game.

Las Vegas with James Caan is firmly in the Tommyverse and don't we all need a little more Elvis?  I do.


  1. OK first off...I have a horrid memory so please remind me why Roger Thorpe visited Maureen Bauer's grave in the dead of night on "The Guiding Light". I do remember Roger Thorpe (and Maureen too). I was a crazy fan of GL from my early youth well into my 20s. But I don't remember why he did this and now it's going to drive me crazy! I'll probably wake up in the middle of the night trying to figure it out!

    Second - where have I been? Joss Whedon is directing The Avengers? That promises to be excellent then!

    Third, I didn't remember that about St Elsewhere. Granted,it was my older brother who was a die-hard fan, but I did watch it at times...I'd love to watch it now though...Perhaps I'll go see if I can find it on the web...

  2. Because he was the most evil evil that ever eviled and he feared for his safety but Maureen was his only friend and he had to pay his respects and and and I'm tearing up just thinking about it. LOVED Michael Zaslow.

    You can find out more information about Whedon here.

  3. You're funny. They don't make those wonderful (and long lasting) storylines in soaps as well as they used to use to.I can't watch them any more. But my favourite you'd used to be GL, Another World and As the World Turns...

    Didn't Roger rape Holly or something?

    Want to laugh? I was wondering about what I just wrote so I googled Roger Thorpe and found this:

    I have a headache now from reading the storyline... :D

    And if I remember correctly Michael Zaslow played in You light up my life, right? I used to love that cheezy song!

  4. Holly was one of at least three victims and that's the thing. Roger was awful and there was no redeeming him, he totally made my skin crawl but I still cried when he went to visit Maureen. Zaslow was really good.

    Don't you love when you find a wikipedia aritcle like that and you're all "Oh, cool, someone took the time to do this," and "Uh, someone really took the time to do this?" at the same time?


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