Once upon a time there was a pilot movie for a series about a paranormal investigator, fighting the forces of darkness in a major American city. Our hero believes that a recent series of brutal murders may be connected to the supernatural… but can he get the authorities to believe him in time?
It may sound familiar, but believe me: it isn’t. The pilot in question is Dark Intruder (1965), starring Leslie Nielsen as a debonaire ghost-chaser in turn-of-the-century San Francisco. The show so far ahead of its time that it was turned down by all three major networks. Released instead to theaters as the bottom half of an obscure double bill, it came back from the dead occasionally as late-night TV filler through the seventies. Since then, though, it’s been ignored — which is a shame: its flaws are no worse than those of other TV productions of the time, and its strong points are considerable.
And thinking of San Francisco, time for some shameless self-promotion… Anybody in the San Francisco area who’s looking for something to do next week might check out a concert by the San Francisco Choral Artists: a program called “Poetry on Musical Wings”, a celebration of particularly successful unions of words and music. In addition to some of the usual suspects (Shakespeare, Rilke… that lot), they’re doing a very short, yet incredibly lovely setting by Oakland composer Michael Kaulkin of a poem by… (ahem) Me. Your not-so-humble Braineater. The music is serious, but the words are silly, and the result is… well, maybe you’ll hear for yourself.
The performances are on June 9 in Palo Alto; June 10 in Oakland; and June 16 in San Francisco. More information is here.