Sunday, September 23, 2007

JTTV - Season 2, Episode 5 - Sbalzi de Amore (Love Rush)

Franco Nero called me on my cell as I was just finishing brunch this afternoon. He ran into Bryce Digdug on the Concorde (no, they're not completely gone, at least for the true jet set) on their way back from Ibiza. Franco said that there is a plan for a reunion of the cast of Sbalzi de Amore (Love Rush), that great TV series that we co-starred in with Ann Margret back in 1979-1980. It really is a shame that CBS turned it down, because it really broke a lot of ground.

One of the great revelations was the acting ability of Ruth Buzzi who played Cookie Mayhew, a single real estate broker who was having an affair with Big Buck Reilly, played by Cantinflas. The cliff hanger was when you were led to believe that she was the person that shot Hildegard Knef's character, Zaranda Reilly, Big Buck's wife. Did Zaranda die? Did Cookie take the rap? Oh, now we'll never know.

I ran into Ruth on State Street in Santa Barbara this summer, and she said she felt Cookie didn't do it, and that as the jilted single woman of "a certain age" she was vilified. I'm with Ruth all the way on that one.

Anyway, I've not been able to transfer all those PAL tapes to NTSC yet, but I was able to come across the original opening credits that I thought my readers might enjoy in the meantime. It wasn't until episode 8, the famed Christmas gala, that Ann started doing the opening sequence on a sling in front of Mount Rushmore.


19 Comments:

At 9:03 PM, Blogger kimy said...

"I was able to come across the original opening credits that I thought my readers might enjoy in the meantime."
and we thank you! although it's gonna be mighty hard to go to sleep after watching that! love rush!

 
At 9:25 PM, Blogger m00nchild said...

i can't stop laughing!

 
At 9:27 PM, Blogger Junk Thief said...

Kimy - It was pretty steamy. That's why it aired after midnight even in Europe.

m00nchild - Laughing? (*@#*@#!!!) Have you no sense of class and high art?

 
At 10:13 PM, Blogger mrpeenee said...

Oh, those short-sighted fools at CBS. They had probably blown their wad getting Lou Grant up and running and this was just too raw for them. I just know you were robbed. You could have been the next Lornzo Lamas.

 
At 10:19 PM, Blogger Gregg said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 10:22 PM, Blogger Junk Thief said...

Mr. Peenee - Oh, "Lou Grant" was well meaning and all, but remember the clothes on that show? "Love Rush" was all about fashion and flair. No, offense, but Lorenzo Lamas tried to rip off Junk Thief's whole style. He was always such a wannabe. And now he's making infomercials and reality TV while I'm a huge star!

 
At 11:12 PM, Blogger m00nchild said...

Still laughing.

 
At 11:30 PM, Blogger Junk Thief said...

m00nchild - Well, as long as you're happy, that's all we ask.

 
At 4:28 AM, Blogger jason said...

genius!

 
At 7:08 AM, Blogger Salty Miss Jill said...

I'm on teneterhooks waiting for the actual footage...

 
At 11:31 AM, Blogger circleinasquare said...

Ruth is from my hometown, where her family sells cemetery monuments. The Gladys Ormphby Bench is placed in Wilcox Park next to the Christoforo Columbo statue, where it is well patronized by alcoholic, laid off former Ashaway Line and Twine mill hands.

I worshipped her on "Laugh In" reruns in the mid 70s. One day after delivering my newspapers, I ran into her in the Granite Street Shopping Center and watched her -silently star struck - from behind a rack of girls plus sized Jordache jeans in Reid and Hughes Department Store. The depth of feeling, nuanced emotion, and even gravitas she displayed - while selecting embellished guest towels from the sale table across the aisle in housewarss - revealed even to my child's eye that she held within her a serious dramatic ability far beyond comedic roles. It's both a Joy knowing that she had the opportunity to perform at this level, and deeply saddening that this work was denied her American fans.

Are any episodes on YouTube?

 
At 6:11 PM, Blogger WAT said...

Um, I just saw some mish mash in Italian here?! HUH?!!!

Ruth Buzzi looks like Valerie Harper in certain shots.

 
At 8:37 PM, Blogger kimy said...

well I meant to write 'love ruth' but maybe the typo was a freudian slip the post did kind of give me a love rush ;)

 
At 4:38 AM, Blogger Joy said...

Will we ever see so much talent gathered in one place again? Alas, it seems the answer is no.

 
At 9:43 AM, Blogger Junk Thief said...

Jason - Aw shucks...

Salty - I'll work on it. Do you have Ruth's phone number?

Circle - That Ruth story is great. Uh, I don't know how to break this to you, but not only did the series never air, it never was filmed. Though, I think the idea of Ruth Buzzi in a real drama is a great idea.

WAT - Mishmash? Huh, don't you know proper Italian when you see it? I kinda agree on the Ruth Buzzi/Valerie Harper similarities. They're both Italian I guess.

Kimy - Love Rush/Love Ruth. Great pairing. I'd not even thought of that. Ew, I hope no one thought this was a love ode to Rush Limbaugh. Gross.

Joy - this was the pinnacle of talent. The Grande Hotel of TV drama. Even Vanessa Redgrave felt Franco did some of his best work here.

 
At 3:40 PM, Blogger Gavin Elster said...

Ah so many stars so little time. This is truly a bizzare "Love Boat" cast.

Nice work as always.

 
At 4:01 PM, Blogger Junk Thief said...

Gavin - Thanks. Ruth Buzzi and I appeared in the second episode of the 1979-80 season of "Love Boat". I played a Jewish accountant from Cleveland named Melvin Rosenthal, and she was the daughter of a ravioli maker from North Beach named Lucia Tagliani. We met cute over a plate of penne and braised prawns.

 
At 3:14 PM, Blogger T$ said...

whoa.
whoa.
whoa.

my, how the face of 70s television would have been so different...

p.s. franco nero is what I like to call "complicated deliciousness". he is one pretty piece of man.

 
At 4:48 PM, Blogger Junk Thief said...

T$ - Oh, if only we could have made this series. I still might make my own version of it, dubbed of course. I've also thought of doing a Barbara Walters report on the set. "Though barely known in the U.S. Cantinflas has a virtually godlike reputation in his native Mexico..."

Oh, you're so right on Franco. He sort of looks like an older version of Miguel Bose, or Miguel sort of looks the way he did around the time of "Querelle". John Phillip wasn't too shabby around the time of "Barbarella".

 

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