Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Demented Old Circus Monkey (King Of Queens)

 The King of Queens: The Complete Series(DVD Boxset)

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 King of Queens. This happens to be one of the first things I touched on in my "My Favitore things" series. Now when I started the series, I can't lie, I didn't know where I was going and didn't know what I wanted to do. If you have noticed over the years, the series has gotten deeper. Lots of words and shit. So now I feel the need to go back and revisit some of the things from the start. Make them right, since they live forever. 
If this your first time reading this, then nevermind, I didn't say nothing.  

The King Of Queens: The King of Queens is an American sitcom that originally ran on CBS from September 21, 1998, to May 14, 2007, for a total of nine seasons and 207 episodes. 

 Doug and Carrie Heffernan are a working class couple living at "3121 Aberdeen Street" in Rego Park, Queens, New York, along with Carrie's eccentric father, Arthur Spooner. Doug works for the fictional International Parcel Service (IPS) as a delivery driver, while Carrie works as a secretary in Manhattan, first for a law firm and later for a real estate firm. Their lives are complicated by the demands of Arthur, so much so that they eventually hire Holly, a professional dog walker, to spend time with him as she walks dogs in the park.

 I didn't know when I wrote this in 2013 and I still don't know now. It's been messing with me ever since. When did I see this show for the first time? I remember seeing it on TV while it was running in the last season. So my guess is that I saw it on TBS with the re-runs. This was back in 2007 so who knows. 

Favitore Character: 

Arthur Spooner (played by Jerry Stiller) is Carrie's widowed father, who has been married three times. His fourth marriage is to Spence's mother (played by Anne Meara, Stiller's real-life wife) during the final season. Arthur is the classic oddball of the family. He lives in the basement of the Heffernan house because he accidentally set fire to his own uninsured home, burning it to the ground in the pilot episode. Very volatile, Arthur is mostly known for his incoherent, irascible outbursts. He tells a lot of questionable stories of what he claims he has been through in his past. Arthur regularly causes chaos in the Heffernan household and gets on Doug's and Carrie's nerves. They sometimes have trouble finding time alone because Arthur tends to get in the way. Arthur also tries to cause trouble with Doug's friends. He especially bullies Spence but also (unsuccessfully) tries it on Deacon, who often refers to him as "the old man".

Fun Fact: According to the DVD commentary of the Pilot episode, the character of Arthur was conceived with Jerry Stiller in mind, but he initially turned down the role. Veteran comedian Jack Carter was then cast and a pilot was shot. Soon afterward, Stiller changed his mind and took the part, which required reshooting of scenes featuring Carter.

A good example of Arthur's behavior is when he discovers an old episode airing of The $10,000 Pyramid on which he appeared in 1976, a fact that he has told Doug "several dozen times." When asked if he won, Arthur, in turn, asks if he would be "living in this dump if [he had]." He later asks for Carrie's help in "[suing] the boyish grin off of Dick Clark's face" because he never got the full year's supply of Rice-A-Roni that he had been promised after the appearance, a scandal he has named "Rice-A-Roni-gate." In an effort to placate Arthur, Clark's representative offers to give him a book instead of the boxed rice meal, the continued production of which the representative is unsure. 

After assuring the representative that Rice-A-Roni is "still made in a variety of mouth-watering flavors," Arthur refuses and scream, "I don't wanna read. I wanna eat!" Arthur ultimately receives a 30-year supply of Rice-A-Roni, in addition to the original supply he was promised on the game show, after (presumably) blackmailing Dick Clark with a photo of the TV icon "locked in a muddy embrace with Fannie Flagg," which was captured from his appearance on the Battle of the Network Stars. (The vintage Pyramid clip used for the episode is from an actual appearance Stiller made on the game show that same year.) Additionally, in the season 6 episode "Trash Talker," Arthur mentions that he allegedly has a lifelong hatred for Larry King, stemming from when they were kids and Arthur stole one of King's prized baseball cards and was subsequently kicked out of school after King tattled on him.

Deacon John Palmer (played by Victor Williams) is Doug's best friend and co-worker. Towering in height and very athletic, Deacon is a year and a few weeks younger than Doug, but the more mature of the two, in addition to being the classic "family man". Deacon and his wife Kelly have two sons, named Major and Kirby. He is often seen hanging out with Doug, whether it is on their lunch break, over the weekend, or for a family gathering. Although he often experiences relationship problems, Deacon always has time to relax and have fun. He will often help Doug plan elaborate schemes to fool Carrie, but he rarely likes to get involved in the scheme himself. Deacon attended St. John's University in Queens, where he received two bachelor's degrees, one in art history and one in music. In the first-season episode "Best Man", Deacon mentions having served in the National Guard. He also volunteers as a big brother.

King of Queens has one of the best theme songs ever. The season one main opening was a simple eight-second sequence which showed the window of a subway train with moving through and quickly stopping at the original show logo, which then peeled off to reveal the names of the show's creators.

Starting with season two, the show added a new theme song called "Baby All My Life I Will Be Driving Home to You", which was written by series writers Josh Goldsmith and Cathy Yuspa, composed by Jonathan Wolff and Scott Clausen, and performed by Billy Vera and the Beaters. An instrumental version was used as the closing theme during season two but was replaced in season three with a new closing theme composed by Kurt Farquhar.

Fun Facts: 

In 1996, Kevin James made his first appearance on Everybody Loves Raymond as a character named Kevin. "When I created The King of Queens in 1997, it wasn’t even for CBS, it was for NBC," co-creator Michael J. Weithorn tells Mental Floss. "David Litt and I created the character of Doug for that pilot. NBC passed on the pilot, then CBS picked it up." A couple of months after The King of Queens debuted, James reappeared on Raymond, this time as Doug Heffernan. And, in a bit of symmetry, between 1998 and 2005 Ray Romano played Ray Barone on four episodes of The King of Queens.

 Family Affair 
Angelo Pagean, Leah Remini's real-life husband, appears on the show 5 different times, playing different characters.

 On the show, Ben Stiller, the son of Aruther Stiller plays the father of his father in flashbacks. 

Veronica Olchin (Anne Meara) is the real-life wife of Aruther Stiller.

Don't Move

  During the almost three-minute opening of April 10, 2006, episode, Patton Oswalt’s character, Spence Olchin, can be seen standing motionless in the Heffernans’ living room while everyone else moves around, talks, and celebrates Doug’s 40th birthday. Spence neither moves nor speaks for the duration of the sequence, even when the camera cuts back and forth from the living room to the kitchen. In 2011 Oswalt explained the reason for his bizarre behavior to Jimmy Fallon: “I’ve never worked with a stonier crew than The King of Queens’ writers and producers,” he said. Apparently, the writers asked him to stand there just to see how weird it’d look, and to see if anybody would notice.


Bickel described the show’s pilot as a “hybrid” because actor Jack Carter played Arthur, but when Stiller became available for the role, he replaced Carter. “What they did was when they decided to do it with Jerry, they reshot just the first few scenes with him,” Bickel said. “So I'd be watching the show [with Jerry onscreen] and it was like, ‘Oh, this is great’ and all of a sudden Jack Carter would appear and it was like, ‘What's happening here?’

“Years later I was in Costco and who’s there buying batteries yelling at his wife but Jack Carter. And I’m thinking our lives would have really would have been so different—both of ours—by this one event.”

Favitore Episodes: 
 It's really hard to pick between 207 episodes. 

 Season 3 Episode 8: "Dark Meet"
After a great Thanksgiving, Doug and Carrie try to recall their first Thanksgiving together and who said, "I Love You" first. They consult Arthur, who quickly recalls some other Thanksgivings and finally recalls 1993 when he was having a fight with his new wife, Lily (Florence Henderson), as Doug was coming over to meet the family.

Season 4 Episode 23 "Eddie Money"
Doug takes a $100 from his and Carrie's savings stash to bet on boxing. When he and Deacon win $5,000, they hide the winnings from their wives by blowing the entire amount in one day, which includes having singer Eddie Money give them a private concert.

Season 5 Episode 8: "Flash Photography"
At a wedding, Doug is bored and Deacon recalls a story of his own wedding where someone took a photo of their behind. Doug gets inspired and takes a disposable camera into the restroom and tries to copy the story only this time it's his "be-front"


Season 7 Episode 10: "Domestic Disturbance"
Carrie hires a Hispanic housekeeper, but the language barrier frustrates Doug, so he decides to hire Spence's mother (Anne Meara) as his own housekeeper.
Season 8 Episode 2: "Vocal Discord"
After a computer microphone records a fight between the two of them, Doug and Carrie begin to think that marriage counseling is a good idea. Meanwhile, Arthur directs a play at the senior center.

Season 8 Episode 9: "G'Night Stalker"
Doug and Carrie decide to go out to a karaoke club, where Doug's singing catches the attention of a stranger, who then becomes obsessed with Doug.

Season 9 Episode 12/13: "China Syndrome"
Series finale: Doug, having discovered that Carrie did not get rid of her apartment in Manhattan—as she was supposed to three weeks ago, tells her that he wants a divorce. Carrie wants to stay together and plans to go to China to pick up their adopted child. Also, Arthur's bride leaves him just before the wedding, believing that he was gay the whole time. At the last minute, Arthur asks Spence's mother to marry him. Doug and Carrie race to China, each attempting to claim their baby before the other. On the way, they reconcile. Carrie finds out after adopting that she is pregnant, and she is overwhelmed. A flash forward to a year later shows a messy, hectic household with both Doug and Carrie struggling to care for two small children, when Arthur suddenly returns because his marriage does not work out.

Arthur lowkey woke.

That's it for this one. What are some of the things that you love about the show? Be sure to let me know in the comment section or yell it at me on Twitter.

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