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Step Right Up for the Sinister Circus That Will Drive You- "Berserk!"

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Join us tonight in the MeTV big top for the greatest show unearthed ( see what I did there?)- as we’re bringing back to the center ring a chilling tale of sawdust and the sinister- with Joan Crawford as the owner and ringmistress of a travelling circus whose main attraction seems to be murder in – “Berserk!”

Joan is Monica Rivers, who presides over a circus that tours Great Britain-which she co-owns with the disgruntled Dorando. The reason for his unhappiness is a tragic- and highly suspicious-high wire accident- and Monica’s rather cold response to it. She feels it will pay off in publicity- and that disgusts Dorando enough to ask her to buy out his part of the show so he will no longer have anything to do with it. Alas- she can’t do it- and instead decides to hire a new high wire artist.

The new hire is handsome young Frank Hawkins- a skilled daredevil whom Monica appreciates for more than his acrobatic skills. The happy excitement of this new act is eclipsed when there is another death- and the circus crew is beginning to think Monica has a hand in it in an attempt to generate more publicity. Especially vocal about that theory is the voluptuous assistant to the knife-thrower, Matilda- who also has her eyes ( and , she hopes, more) on Frank! Meanwhile, Frank tries to use the suspicion to his advantage to try to coerce Monica into providing a share in the circus for himself.

As if the situation needs an additional twist- Monica’s semi-estranged daughter, Angela, shows up at the circus, having been thrown out of school for bad behavior. With nowhere else for her to go, Monica’s cold heart melts a little- and decides she can stay on with the circus.

Happy days are NOT here again, however- as there is more murder, more accusations, and fear and unrest among the circus folk- with Monica in the center ring of suspicion!

This 1967 film, actually Joan’s next-to-last big screen appearance, utilizes a real travelling show- the Billy Smart circus. We’ll introduce the performers, including Ty Hardin, Diana Dors, and Michael Gough- as well as conducting our own circus and sideshow- not to mention bringing you a new song- though it will be airing a little later in the show than usual.

Go “Berserk” tonight on MeTV at 8 pm eastern/pacific, 7 central, and for the time and channel check in your area , visit www.metv.com  -or check your local listings. During the show, our fans on Twitter will again be live-tweeting, using the hashtag #svengoolie – feel free to join them. Last week they again had our show trending high on the national list. The U in our Chicago viewing area returns our show to its usual time- 11 am- for this week, with an encore of “The Old Dark House”.

On a personal note- my brother Michael Koz has passed away just shy of his 60th birthday. Mike worked as an assistant editor on various TV shows and movies, including “Get Shorty”, “Men in Black”, ”The Gates”, and “Collateral”. As was stated in his memorial service- he was a nice guy. One of the nicest.

Remember that you can join me next weekend – in Berwyn- at the new “Pet Supplies Plus” store at the Harlem and Cermak Plaza - 7133 Cermak Road . It takes place Saturday, February 1st  from 1-3 pm. In February, we’ll have a full schedule appearing at the big C2E2 comics and entertainment convention at Chicago’s McCormick Place- more about that soon!

But tonight- step right up for circus thrills that are not always death-defying- as in, they may not be lucky enough to defy death!

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1MikeM 2 months ago
…..and dat was Berserk! and dat's da name of dat tune.
MADave 2 months ago
What's the klink word this week? How about mentioning Don Knotts?
DrClayton 2 months ago
Am priming the pump for Ghostly Chickens...
Carl_N_Brown 2 months ago
So, we are leaving the Berserk! circus behind and returning to not The Dark Old House but a dark old house, with a ghost, in the brave company of Atta Boy Luther, he ain't afraida no ghost!
StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
Last summer, PatS said this Blog had gotten over 2000 comments once.
Now at least 2186 comments - is this a record?
Thanks to all the first-timers coming out of the woodwork to help Rich Koz in his time of grief.
- Steph
JournalJeff2 2 months ago
Officially Svengoolie Eve here in Wisconsin. Just over 24 hours until The Ghost and Mr. Chicken! Atta boy Luther!
Klaatu JournalJeff2 2 months ago
Can’t wait for Luther!👍
Munsters Klaatu 2 months ago
Think Alma died a few mo months ago
daleuhlmann Munsters 2 months ago
Yes, sadly, Joan Staley, whom we last saw in VALLEY OF THE DRAGONS.
Islander 2 months ago
Dreary cool Friday night here at the beach. Cleaning the house in ready for a poker game tonight. If anyone wants to fly in in the next couple hours, come on down. Two more players and we can have two tables going. Ofcourse, we'll have our LOCAL ME TV AFFILIATE CHANNEL on in the back ground.
Munsters Islander 2 months ago
Near the beach here.......high 30s round 40ish.....
Islander Munsters 2 months ago
Ouch, I'll take my 50's.
TheKodakKid Islander 2 months ago
Uh, do you need to clear that with Mrs. Islander first?
Carl_N_Brown 2 months ago
OK, we've had cartoons, music videos, etc disappear. Before blaming other commenters for flagging, consider this. Sven has been getting some blowback on various things being posted, including music videos. MeTV Terms of Use: "... (i) you will not transmit any Submission to MeTV which infringes upon the rights of any third party, ..."
Boys and girls, if you post something not yours or not public domain, don't be surprised if it disappears. And don't blame someone who might have found it offensive. The blame might be yours. DMCA.
Islander Carl_N_Brown 2 months ago
Can you really get a post deleted by just having a number of commenters flag it ? I thought that was just to bring it attention to the administrator so she can rule on it. ???
1MikeM Islander 2 months ago
That's a very good question Islander.
daleuhlmann Carl_N_Brown 2 months ago
Well-said, Carl, especially in light of the off-color potty humor we saw earlier in the week. According to the Administrator, yes, humor is subjective, but, on this blog, should not go beyond the limits of anything that Sven might reasonably say or joke about. That would certainly include toilet jokes as no-brainers.
Catbat Islander 2 months ago
Yes too many flags and the post is automatically removed.
StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
Lucy,
Adult choir practice WAS on Wednesday, right after Prayer Service.
Children and Youth Choir was on Sunday night.
The church subsidized Youth Choir Mission/ Singing Tours to Hawaii, Canada, Mexico, even to Germany, where the ones who went visited Ravensburg, a concentration camp.
First Baptist, Lafayette LA was just marvelous in the 1970s. Whole Baptist Convention has changed so much. I know, no religion, but that church was my entire life, kept me away from drugs and too-early sex.
TTYL,
- Steph :-)
Catbat StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
Too early sex? Inquiring minds
DrClayton Catbat 2 months ago
"It depends on what the definition of 'too' is. And 'is' is."
StephanieStepStone Catbat 2 months ago
Kept me from having sex too early
StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
Jack, Dale,
So in 4 years, we can do comparison contrast between
'The Day the Clown Cried' and
'Life is Beautiful.'
- *Steph*
Jack StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
Actually, we’d be a little late to the game for that comparison.
daleuhlmann Jack 2 months ago
Yes, probably quite late.
StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
Jack, Dale,
Kirk Douglas gave an intriguing performance in
'The Juggler.' about a Camp Survivor (What Holocaust Survivors were called back then) who'd been a juggler before the war, and his struggle to adjust to free life in Israel.
No violence, except in characters' memories. Just love and care expressed by the Sabras and other Israelis who took in and took care of so many survivors.
Black & white with calm, quiet filming. It's talking-head in a couple places, but does have some non-violent action and suspense.
Probably OK for children 10 and older.
- Steph :-)
Yes, indeed, Stephanie, a film that's still relevant today.
Jack StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
_The Juggler_ was on that other network that shows classic movies, but it was on way past my bedtime.

Camp survivor is but one group of Holocaust survivors. A few thousand Jews survived in hiding or by passing with false papers, sometimes with the assistance of non-Jews. Others, such as the Bielski group, survived as partisans. Others survived in occupied countries or under collaborationist regimes because liberation came before deportations could be completed. Finally, the largest group of survivors where those were able to escape German-occupied Europe, after the Nazis began to enact anti-Jewish policies in the early 1930s and during the war. Survival outside internment also occurred among other targeted groups, e.g., Romani, homosexuals, and communists.

_Holocaust_ had be used in 1895 to describe the Armenian genocide by the Ottomans. The term was used as early as 1941 in the American press to describe the Nazis’ attempted annihilation of European Jews. The Library of Congress created a new classification category, "Holocaust, Jewish (1939–1945)” in 1968, reflecting scholarly usage. The term acquired popular use as a result of the 1978 mini-series _Holocaust_.
StephanieStepStone Jack 2 months ago
Thanks for info. I know most of that stuff, tho I often limit it because I'm already so lengthy much of the time. But a lot of people don't know all details about this true-life horror.
I have a cousin's father-in-law who managed to escape Germany after Crystalnacht, 'The Night of Broken Glass.' Went to work for Walter Winchell, the famous radio host. (As famous as Stephen Colbert or Dave Letterman are now.)
- Steph :-)
Jack StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
Winchell… wasn’t he the guy with Jerry Mahoney? Just kidding, Mr. and Mrs. America!

In case you want to look it up online, it’s _Kristallnacht_. OCD about spelling—it’s my mutant power, not as cool as a healing factor.
StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
LucyC,
Marj Dusay played Blair Warner's mother on several episodes of
'The Facts of Life,' which aired in late night/ early morning for a couple of years on MeTV.
RIP Marj Dusay and Fred Silverman.
- Steph :-(
StephanieStepStone 2 months ago
WALTONS HAS SISSY SPACEK RIGHT NOW, CENTRAL TIME.
(Of 'Carrie.')
Sarah Jane's Mother is Allyn Ann McLery, Mr. Carlson's wife on
'WKRP in Cincinnati.'
TheKodakKid 2 months ago
Verrry interesting. A few hours ago, I made a comment on my post about the passing of Fred Silverman. It’s gone now. Can’t figure out why.
Lynn TheKodakKid 2 months ago
It was there yesterday, and while I can't say that I noticed it first thing this morning, it certainly is there now. I occasionally notice that some of my comments go AWOL for short periods of time and then return. I don't think there is any deep meaning to it. Just a mystery of the blog space continuum. Or something. Happy Friday!
StephanieStepStone Lynn 2 months ago
Same thing here. I think we have Goonies or Poltergeists or something.
- Steph :-)
PatS TheKodakKid 2 months ago

Your comment registers "1 hour ago" at 10:50 am CST 1/31. The comment about Silverman is online as of now. Yes, strange how comments disappear, re-appear and even duplicate. The mysteries of blog-o-matics?
Jack TheKodakKid 2 months ago
Try checking your comment stream by clicking your user name and then if you find it click “View in discussion.” I found it that way.
Carl_N_Brown Jack 2 months ago
I am seeing it now by scrolling down.
Carl_N_Brown Carl_N_Brown 2 months ago
This happens. Why? It's a mystery to me.
JournalJeff2 2 months ago
Good Morning & Happy Friday!
In my dream last night, everybody was yelling, "atta boy Barney!" What does it mean? Well, I think I`ll have some French Ghost for breakfast. See you later. Have a Great Day & Take Care!!
> HA!
MaDave controlling your dreams?
- Steph :-)
Catbat 2 months ago
Good Svengoolie Saturday Eve Morning All!
Long day at work today. I'll try and blog when I get home. Have a great day all! Gotta go
TheKodakKid 2 months ago
A passing of note.

Fred Silverman has died at 82. He was an executive for all three major networks. He had a hand in influencing soap operas, game shows, Saturday morning cartoons, and every other genre of tv imaginable.

He originally brought many shows seen on MeTV to television. He’s also responsible for canceling others that are MeTV favorites as well.

When the terms legendary or giant of the industry are mentioned, Fred Silverman is at or near the very top of the list for television.
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JournalJeff2 JournalJeff2 2 months ago
I should have used sarcasm font.
I started interning at the Journal in 1980. Part of Journal Communications was WTMJ channel 4 TV which was and still is a NBC station. I did see 5-10 minutes of a couple of episodes. I am still trying to forget that!
daleuhlmann Carl_N_Brown 2 months ago
Carl: The shortest-lived program in American television history was TURN-ON, ABC's abysmal 1969 answer to NBC's ROWAN AND MARTiN'S LAUGH-IN. It lasted only ONE night before being pulled! LIsten to what host Tim Conway has to say about this misfire, when he was interviewed on one of PBS' PIONEERS OF TELEVISION specials a few years back.
Carl_N_Brown daleuhlmann 2 months ago
From reviews Turn-on! would make Pink Lady look like Masterpiece Theatre.
Lucyc 2 months ago
Oh, I forgot to mention that the same circus that was involved in filming Berserk, the Billy Smart Circus, also served as consultants on Vampire Circus. Also, several members of the cast would later go on to become identified with some very successful genre properties. Dave Prowse, who plays the circus strongman here, would go on to stardom as the physical embodiment of Darth Vader. Lalla Ward, who is one of the vampires, would go on to become one of Dr. Who's more popular companions, and Robin Sachs, who also plays one of the vampires, would go on to play a recurring villain in the tv version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Lucyc 2 months ago
I think we have mentioned this movie before, but since circuses are the theme this week, an interesting movie that Sven could now perhaps have access to-since he can now get WB films-is the Hammer film, Vampire circus.
It's a rather strange film, and there are some scenes/themes that they would have to edit out to make the movie family friendly, but it certainly would provide quite few topics for discussion.
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