“I feel like a sick, sick person for responding to this HeadScratcher so fast,” wrote avid PopWatcher James DeSimas. “But when you reload the page every 10 minutes or so, waiting for more posts, it’s just bound to happen.” Well, young James, your persistence has paid off. (And that sick feeling is normal.)
James, and 30 or so of his closest friends, knew that Dallas, Dennis the Menace, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, The Partridge Family, Roseanne, and The Waltons all “pulled a Darrin,” as reader Hamid Sarkarati put it. That is, like Bewitched, which had two actors playing devoted husband Darrin Stevens, they all recast a main character in the middle of the show’s run. Future Scrubs star Sarah Chalke (above right), for example, stepped in when Roseanne’s original Becky, Lecy Goranson (above left), went off to college.
As it turned out, it was no accident (Ed Nemmers cited triskaidekaphobia – look it up) that this was the 13th HeadScratcher. Spooky, otherworldly, Halloween-like forces intervened, leaving PopWatch HQ vulnerable to (gasp) mistake-making. As a few of you pointed out, the second Mr. Wilson on Dennis the Menace was actually the brother of the original character. So technically it doesn’t belong in the question at all. Oopsies! Shiny PopWatch Deputy pins go to Jeremy Beaulne, Connie Chilton, Paolo Guttadauro, Jason Marshall, Paul Secrest, Josh Vogel, and Patrick Yearout for catching the boo-boo and keeping the peace on the PopWatch prairie. Your prize: We shall, as a group, act out a scene from Unforgiven. As always, I get to be Gene Hackman.
As usual, the Bullies – the aforementioned Guttadauro and Secrest – had a few choice (and, might I add, Oedipal) words for me about the degree of difficulty of this week’s question, my mother, and my “generally icky ‘Mickey Is Your Daddy’ metaphors.” Believe you me, those two trouble-monsters were headed for one long time-out until I came upon the closing on their note – “Daddy’s little Bullies” – and it made me feel sort of creepy, so I realized they were right. Instead, I’m going to borrow a more suitable closing used by PopWatcher Blair Madison Late (I think he’s an actor).
Stay tuned for next week. As always, if you have a question idea, send it along to firstname.lastname@example.org. I know; I know – it’s a lot more fun to sit back in your heated Barcalounger and mock me than actually, you know, do anything productive yourself. So please, sit back, relax, and don’t worry, that orange Cheez Puff dust will definitely come off in the wash.
(See the complete list of wieners – ahem, winners – after the jump.)
“My boy’s wicked smaht!”
Leslie Freeman Aaronson
Blair Madison Late
Wallace David Sears
addCredit(“Sarah Chalke and Lecy Goranson: Everett Collection”)