Devoted TDOY readers—currently commuting to work in a VW Beetle—may be aware that I’ve discussed in the past a little-seen 60s sitcom created by Leonard Stern entitled I’m Dickens…He’s Fenster. Stern, who wrote for classic television comedies like The Honeymooners, He & She (which he also created) and The Phil Silvers Show (and was also the executive producer on Get Smart), created this hilariously funny slapstick series that was critically acclaimed but unfortunately short-lived…despite the fact that it had the stamp of approval from none other than Stan Laurel himself!
TVShowsOnDVD.com has most of the skinny here, and what’s interesting to note is that all thirty-two fine-grain 35mm masters of the 1962-63 series have been discovered, prompting Stern to start a website (imdickenshesfenster.com) in hopes of drumming up support for a DVD release of this woefully-neglected series. The website also contains rare footage from the show, publicity photos, vintage reviews and other goodies for Dickens/Fenster fans. (There’s a newsletter that they encourage visitors to sign up for, both to show their support for a DVD release and to relay what progress is being made if the disc gets the green light. Since my pleas for a Saxby Chambliss defeat went ignored, I'm perfectly willing to swap it for the prospect of having a great show available on DVD.)
Naturally, I had to sign up for this tuit suite (I leapt out of my seat when I got the e-mail with “I’m Dickens…He’s Fenster” in the header) and if you enjoy the show as much as I do, I certainly hope you’ll do the same. In the meantime, follow this link to see the pilot (“A Small Matter of Being Fired”) starring John Astin, Marty Ingels, Emmaline Henry and Moundsville, WV’s own Frank DeVol as Myron Bannister.
Elsewhere on TVShowsOnDVD.com, a street date for Route 66: Season 3 has been announced; the third season of the 60s cult drama starring Martin Milner and George Maharis will be released by Infinity Entertainment February 10th of next year. The bad news is that it would appear (according to the listing on Amazon.com) Infinity has gone back to the split season releases that were disastrous for the show’s first season DVD release—but that’s pretty much par for the course, I suppose. (And to tie everything together, one of the reasons why Dickens…Fenster lasted but a single season was the stiff competition from…Route 66.)