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Cheryl Miller loved cats and so do I – here’s how we can all show our love

courtesy of Walter

courtesy of Walter

How could love Daktari and not love cats?

I am thisclose to being a crazy cat lady. :-) We all know how much Cheryl Miller loved her cats, both big and small.

That being said, I wanted to share with you a book I recently self-published known as The Critter Room Memory Book Volume One on sale now for $19.95 to raise funds for an extraordinary no-kill cat shelter known as Purrfect Pals. Before encountering Purrfect Pals I would have thought that supporting a cat shelter was a frivolous thing; shouldn’t my efforts go towards helping humans instead?

It turns out Purrfect Pals does help humans, and here’s how.

cover croppedTwo years ago I “met” John Bartlett online. He is a volunteer for Purrfect Pals having fostered 43 litters of kittens. Nearly 200 kittens and mother cats have found permanent homes as a result of his efforts.

A friend alerted me to the live kitten cam John had on Livestream and after my first visit, I was hooked. Over the span of several weeks I could watch newborn babies grow to healthy and beautiful kittens ready to take on the world.

It was fun watching them grow from squirmy little sausages with pencil point tales to the fur balls of fun. Imagine watching little kittens working their tiny paws back and forth in rapid succession as they nursed from their mother … envision little spitfires “zooming” around the room, leaping, tumbling and snuggling … I couldn’t stop watching.

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Offering joy and comfort

I enjoy watching the kitten cam for a good laugh or just to get away for a spell from all the bad news in the world. At first the draw was the kittens but soon it became the community—thousands of people from around the world tuning in to watch kittens, chat together, share their life stories and offer comfort to other members who needed it. Along with the comical remarks about the kittens (kitten lovers have a great sense of humor) were stories of chronic illness, unemployment and other matters that isolate people from their world. Some community members are homebound and the live kitten cam community became a lifeline for them, filling their days with smiles and love.

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Why The Critter Room Memory Book?

Tears are shed on adoption day as the kittens go off to their new homes. We’re all thrilled and yet we miss them. That’s when I came up with the idea of The Critter Room Memory Book Volume One, a scrapbook full of pictures of kittens along with fan fiction, art and commentary on how the Critter Room community is a microcosm for how the world could work when we could but adopt a common cause.

Prison outreach

prison-programFoster Dad John helps kittens find homes and his cam gives joy to people in need. But there’s more. Purrfect Pals has a prison outreach program called Prison-Foster where inmates are given semi-feral kittens to socialize and to love so that they can then be adopted. That’s when I knew I wanted to support this wonderful organization.

In support of Purrfect Pals

If you would like to support Purrfect Pals in their work, you can purchase The Critter Room Memory Book Volume One, and all royalties go to Purrfect Pals. For every $19.95 you spend, Purrfect Pals makes $10.35. Makes a great gift!

How to double your donation

critter room memory book box art2Another great way to help is to “double” your donation by purchasing books for Purrfect Pals to sell during their adoption events. Their address is 230 McRae Rd NE, Arlington, WA 98223 in care of Executive Director Connie Gabelein.

You can find out more about Foster Dad John and The Critter Room by visiting the Facebook page.

Thanks for your support!

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courtesy of Walter

 

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Daktari Season 3 DVD Review

daktaritvshow.wordpress.com Daktari The Complete ThirdSeason2For those of you on the fence as to the purchase of Season 3 of Daktari, here is a lengthy review from DVD Talk that could change your mind:

Review by Paul Mavis | posted September 20, 2014

The natives are getting restless…. Warner Bros.’ Archive Collection of hard-to-find library and cult titles has released Daktari: The Complete Third Season, a 6-disc, 28-episode collection of the CBS family adventure’s 1967-1968 season. Produced by the legendary Ivan Tors, and starring Marshall Thompson, Cheryl Miller, Yale Summers, Hari Rhodes, Hedley Mattingly, Clarence the Cross-Eyed Lion himself, and Judy and Toto the Chimpanzees, Daktari may be simplistic and juvenile at times (okay: at all times…), but it’s not insulting to a child’s (or your) intelligence: it knows it’s a kid show but it doesn’t talk down to them (or you). It’s also–as one would expect from Tors–expertly produced, action-packed (but non-violent) family fare that will appeal best to the smaller small fry, particularly when delightful hambone Judy is on-screen…which is every 30 seconds, it seems. No extras for these nice fullscreen color transfers.

Read the rest of the review here.

Here’s some pictures from the third season:

 

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Cheryl Miller in high school; rare photo taken in 1961 (and no make-up!)

Awesome find from Walter, one of our faithful readers – thanks Walter! Source: http://beta.worldcat.org/archivegrid/collection/data/528873719

Photograph caption dated February 27, 1961 reads, "Grant High Choir Gets New Robes -- Cheryl Miller, 17, right, 4186 Fulton Ave., Sherman Oaks, tries on one of the new robes given the choir of Grant High School in Van Nuys by the school's Dads Club. Holding up another of the robes, which cost a total of $1,200, are Dane Manes, left, Dads Club president, and Robert La Fontaine, choir director."

Photograph caption dated February 27, 1961 reads, “Grant High Choir Gets New Robes — Cheryl Miller, 17, right, 4186 Fulton Ave., Sherman Oaks, tries on one of the new robes given the choir of Grant High School in Van Nuys by the school’s Dads Club. Holding up another of the robes, which cost a total of $1,200, are Dane Manes, left, Dads Club president, and Robert La Fontaine, choir director.”

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Daktari Bubblebum Cards from 1966

Did any of you collect Daktari bubblegum cards when they first came out in 1966? I don’t know how I missed that seeing as there was a drugstore with a terrific candy counter right down the street. But, thanks to the internet, we get a chance to see all these great cards!

The front sides looked like this:

The back sides are puzzle pieces:

I assembled a few of the puzzles:

puzzles.indd

puzzles.indd

puzzles.indd

Download the cards and see if you can put together the puzzles. If you can, send a picture back to me of the assembled puzzle and I’ll post it on the site.

Anybody have the original cards? Tell me true: did you keep the bubblegum? ;-)

Enjoy!

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Daktari Season 3 on DVD is here!

daktaritvshow.wordpress.com Daktari The Complete ThirdSeason2It’s here! Daktari Season 3 is here on DVD! This makes it likely there will be a Season 4 release in the future as well. Very cool!

Check out this preview from Season Three:

daktaritvshow.wordpress.com Daktari The Complete ThirdSeason videoThe cost is $49.95. Check out the Season Three Guide here.

What do you think of Season Three?
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Daktari on location: Marshall Thompson in the “real” Africa

by Ken Lynch

Much has been written about Daktari being filmed at Africa USA, a simulated jungle compound in California’s desert-like Soledad Canyon. These sequences were usually edited with stock African footage.

However, during the production break between the First and Second Seasons, Marshall Thompson and a film crew visited the ‘real’ Africa and filmed background scenes of him with animals, in the bush and with natives in their villages.

Marshall Thompson filmed on-location as Marsh Tracy in Africa

Marshall Thompson filmed on-location as Marsh Tracy in Africa

These sequences were edited into at least eight episodes to give the series an authentic look that added to its appeal.

Early Visits to Africa

Marshall Thompson’s fascination with Africa became a reality in 1957 when he was chosen for a role in the film East of Kilimanjaro which demanded four months of shooting on-location in Kenya and Tanganyika.

“I guess I would have done the part just for the chance to go to Africa,” Thompson recalled. “I’ll never forget the thrill of my arrival in Nairobi and the realization that I actually was there in the flesh.”

http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1917&dat=19680817&id=gnwuAAAAIBAJ&sjid=HYoFAAAAIBAJ&pg=2044,3335210

There is a strong possibility that unused animal and African village footage from East of Kilimanjaro was used in Daktari and, most certainly, in the film that spawned the series – Clarence, the Cross-Eyed Lion.

Left:  The rhino scene in a Kilamanjaro poster Right:  The very same scene as featured in Clarence

Left: The rhino scene in a Kilamanjaro poster
Right: The very same scene as featured in Clarence

In particular, the opening scene of Kilimanjarois almost identical to the opening of Clarence. Most significantly, the scene where Thompson’s character has a close encounter with a rhino was inserted directly into Clarence.

Thompson returned to Africa for another four months to what was then the Belgian Congo and brought his wife Barbara along.

By early 1966, Thompson was quoted as saying that he had been on “four trips to Africa in the past dozen years.”

http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1734&dat=19660423&id=DBscAAAAIBAJ&sjid=GVEEAAAAIBAJ&pg=6931,4069838

Filming African Footage for Daktari

To date, the reference most quoted about Marshall Thompson’s African visit to film for Daktari is sourced to the show’s producer Leonard B Kaufman. Specifically, the liner notes for Shelly Manne’s “Daktari” CD quote Kaufman on filming Daktari in “beautiful but primitive Mozambique”, particularly returning with Thompson “from 10 hours of location filming” and relaxing to “the haunting and earthy sounds of distant native drumming.”

However, a recently discovered 1966 newspaper article has provided much more detail of this event.

Daktari was regarded as a solid hit after its mid-season debut and screening in January-May 1966. The announcement of its Second Season contained the promise of something new as a result of the first safari to Africa ever undertaken for a television series.

Kaufman and associate producer Ralph Helfer joined Thompson to travel to Mozambique for scenes to be filmed with the Zulu tribes of South Africa. They actually became the first TV unit to make films in the Gorongoza National Park and, later, they also worked in the private game reserve of Mala Mala.

A map showing the location of the Gorongoza National Park

A map showing the location of the Gorongoza National Park

Among scenes that would ultimately be highlights of the Second Season were bull elephants charging at 30 miles an hour and the Zulus of Matavela lining up to greet Thompson.

Marshall Thompson meeting African villagers

Marshall Thompson meeting African villagers

Daktari creator Ivan Tors had heard that a pride of lions had moved into a housing project near the Gorongoza National Park and so the camera crew went there to photograph them. Several abandoned houses were occupied by lions who had taken over the clean shady buildings. It was like a lion city, and the film crew’s presence did not seem to excite them or make them aggressive. The footage from this filming expedition ultimately became a major sequence in the “House of Lions” episode.

Abandoned houses near Gorongoza with lions in the foreground

Abandoned houses near Gorongoza with lions in the foreground

Another event in the African shooting schedule was a two-mile chase after a 19-foot giraffe which ended in its capture. It too ultimately became a major Daktari storyline, this time in the “Little Miss Nightingale” episode

The Daktari crew roping the giraffe with Marshall Thompson turning his head towards the camera

The Daktari crew roping the giraffe with Marshall Thompson turning his head towards the camera

A total of five weeks was spent on this safari for Daktari footage. Thompson then returned to California with 50,000 feet of exposed color film to shoot the bulk of the Second Season at Africa USA.

Although the exact date of the five-week African shoot has never previously been documented, a recently discovered picture of Thompson in Johannesburg dated March 1966 actually pinpoints the period he made this visit.

Marshall Thompson on-location in Africa

Marshall Thompson on-location in Africa

Use of African Footage in Episodes

2.5 (23) “Cheetah at Large” (First aired 11 Oct 1966) On-location African footage of Marshall Thompson is featured for the first time.

Left:  A shot of Thompson in “Cheetah at Large” filmed on-location on the savannah Right:  A close-up taken back at Africa USA cleverly edited into the same sequence

Left: A shot of Thompson in “Cheetah at Large” filmed on-location on the savannah
Right: A close-up taken back at Africa USA cleverly edited into the same sequence

2.8 (26) “The Trial” (First aired 1 Nov 1966) The first on-location shots of Thompson filmed with natives in an African village are seamlessly edited into footage at Africa USA.

Left:  A picture taken on-location in Africa with motifs on the village wall at the back Right:  A picture taken at Africa USA during “The Trial” with the replicated village wall in the background

Left: A picture taken on-location in Africa with motifs on the village wall at the back
Right: A picture taken at Africa USA during “The Trial” with the replicated village wall in the background

2.11 (29) “Shoot to Kill” (First aired 29 Nov 1966) Features on-location African footage of Thompson in the bush plus him getting out of a truck at a real African village.

Left:  A shot from “Shoot to Kill” taken on-location of Thompson in the real African bush Right:  A shot taken of Thompson arriving at an African village

Left: A shot from “Shoot to Kill” taken on-location of Thompson in the real African bush
Right: A shot taken of Thompson arriving at an African village

2.13 (31) “Clarence the Killer” (First aired 20 Dec 1966) Several scenes filmed on-location in Africa are used (even one of a figure dressed as Hedley searching the African bush).

Left:  A shot from “Clarence the Killer” taken on-location of Thompson in the real African bush Right:  A shot of a figure dressed as Hedley filmed on-location on the savannah

Left: A shot from “Clarence the Killer” taken on-location of Thompson in the real African bush
Right: A shot of a figure dressed as Hedley filmed on-location on the savannah

2.17 (35) “House of Lions” (First aired 17 Jan 1967) Features extensive scenes of Thompson filmed in Africa wandering outside abandoned two-storey houses built for mining surveyors. For the only time in the series, the credits acknowledge the filming location.

Left:  A shot of Thompson in “House of Lions” filmed on-location walking from a house to his truck Right:  A close-up at the truck filmed at Africa USA cleverly edited into the same sequence

Left: A shot of Thompson in “House of Lions” filmed on-location walking from a house to his truck
Right: A close-up at the truck filmed at Africa USA cleverly edited into the same sequence

Left:  Thompson on-location entering the house with his medical kit in “House of Lions” Right:  An internal shot filmed at Africa USA cleverly edited to show him entering the house

Left: Thompson on-location entering the house with his medical kit in “House of Lions”
Right: An internal shot filmed at Africa USA cleverly edited to show him entering the house

The end credits which acknowledge filming at Gorongoza National Park

The end credits which acknowledge filming at Gorongoza National Park

2.22 (40) “A Bullet for Hedley” (First aired 21 Feb 1967) As in Episode 2.13, authentic footage of a game warden (supposedly Hedley) walking on the African savannah is shown.

A shot from “A Bullet for Hedley” of a figure dressed as Hedley filmed on-location

A shot from “A Bullet for Hedley” of a figure dressed as Hedley filmed on-location

3.1 (48) Judy and the Astro-Chimp (First aired 5 Sept 1967) As in Episode 2.11, footage of Marshall Thompson on-location in Africa is used again.

A shot from “Judy and the Astro-Chimp” taken on-location of Thompson in the real African bush

A shot from “Judy and the Astro-Chimp” taken on-location of Thompson in the real African bush

2.15 (33) Little Miss Nightingale (First aired 3 Jan 1967) Includes on-location scenes of Thompson capturing a giraffe. [Although listed in most episode guides as a Second Season episode, Warner Archive has confirmed that this episode actually belongs to the Third Season]

shots 1-4 from the extended on-location African sequence of the giraffe capture in “Little Miss Nightingale”

shots 1-4 from the extended on-location African sequence of the giraffe capture in “Little Miss Nightingale”

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The next Clarence the cross-eyed lion? Meet Egon, the cross-eyed siamese kitten!

from the Ghostbuster kittens fostered by John Bartlett (“Foster Dad John” or “FDJ”) of The Critter Room for Purrfect Pals no-kill shelter in Arlington, WA. You can watch Foster Dad John’s litters live on Livestream. Warning: VERY addictive! :-)

egon

 

daktaritvshow.wordpress.com clarence the cross-eyed lion

 

 

Click to Tweet & Share: The next Clarence the cross-eyed lion? Meet Egon, the cross-eyed siamese kitten! http://wp.me/p3hKG3-kT
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sue__twitter__biggerAre you a fan of Daktari?
Send an email to daktaritvshow@gmail.com
to subscribe, and never miss a post!
Follow Susan on Facebook and Twitter
Listen to Susan’s music Read Susan’s other blogs: Louisa May Alcott is My Passion and Be As One: Living Life in a Single Flow

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