Chronicles, Litanies, and Fanboy Obsessions:

The (Continuing) Egolf Chronicles.

Herein is the continuing Gretchen Egolf Chronicles. (Meta-Version 3.0) Previous chronicles (May 28, 2001 to February 11, 2002 and February 11, 2002 to July 10, 2002) are occasionally updated with addendums (use your browser's "find" feature to look for the word "Update" and you'll find them quick enough), but no new entries. The Lack-of-Sleep Litanies have been left to their own devices on other pages.

Recent updates are also kept on their own page, called "Recent Updates". Original, huh?

July 16, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V18.001)
I have killed the TNN logo. All is right with the world. Well, here we are. Another new page, another new day (have another go at pretending it is - oh, wait, never mind, it really is this time), another new image to enjoy. (Last time was Roswell, this time Martial Law, I don't have much further back to go.)

As you can clearly tell, I'm taking measures to keep at search engine tops. Let's watch it crash and burn, shall we?

As you can also tell, I didn't guess Gretchen's middle name in time for this page's filename. Found a Gretchen Denise Phillips who likely had lived in Pennsylvania, but it turned out to be someone different. Though I'm not entirely ruling out some massive cosmic joke at this point that's going to somehow make me look like a moron in the future by having that be Ms. Egolf's real middle name.

Nevertheless, I will keep searching for the elusive name. And keep hoping she has three of 'em, this page is growing quick.

July 24, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V24.0)
You can't help but love search engines. Several under the Lycos banner - I probably shouldn't complain too loudly, then, as this site is under the same banner - got the great idea to do my thinking for me. So, when I punch in a fanboy search for "Gretchen Egolf", it somehow puzzles out that she was in a show called "Martial Law". So, tops on its list are several links for "Martial Law". As in the kind where the government sends in the troops. As in the kind that people with an unhealthy love for automatic weapons are stockpiling ammo for.

Ain't the Innernet wunnerful?

August 3, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V16.565)
August 11, 2002 AD: This update appeared on the 3rd in a special upload of this page's predecessor, along with about 4 pointers to it on different parts of these pages. Archived here for informational purposes, with one bit of HTML <FONT> tagging removed.

The time has come.

Pauline unwittingly gives away a valuable plate. {CC, Stereo}
Cast: Bill Cosby, Phylicia Rashad, Madeline Kahn, Doug E. Doug, T'Keyah Crystal Keymah, Joseph Siravo, Devere Artis, Gretchen Egolf, Ashley Remy, Theresa Merritt

Thursday, August 15 on some cable feeds.

Tuesday, August 13 on satellite feed T5-10, at 10:30 AM Eastern.

Tuesday, September 3 on satellite feed T5-10, at 8:00 AM Eastern.

(Update, September 3, 2002 AD: So they made a fool of me and added an extra week of programming somewhere. September 10th it'll be on.)

Again, check this page (search for "Cosby") to see if your cable channel is keeping up with the one I'm using as a baseline.

August 11, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V23.1)
I do think the rumor mill is getting a bit silly now. The rumor that Gretchen Egolf would be Wonder Woman has been translated into at least 2 non-English languages; has raised praise, ire, and some really screwed-up conspiracy theories. For those of you who are here specifically for that, I would like to make a statement. Take it as you will.

September 5, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.0)
(Insert apology for what's been a very slow month.)

Insert mandatory snide joke about Brad Garrett playing Jackie Gleason here.

Insert fanboyish comment about Gretchen Egolf playing one of Gleason's wives.

Insert informational comment that it'll be on CBS sometime before 2004.

Insert snide comment on how someone's assertion that it will be on the 29th of this month is wrong, according to TV Guide.

Insert snider comment that TV Guide is convinced that CBS is going to run the film Message in a Bottle on both the 15th and the 29th. Therefore TV Guide is probably wrong.

Insert suggestion that is about the only place to get a definitive answer from.

Insert comment about how the item linked to the word 'joke' above appears below, translated by Babelfish from French.

This film, intended for television, tells the life of Jackie Gleason, a high-speed motorboat of the small screen in the Fifties and Sixties. In spite of the merry characters that it incarne with television, it fails when it should play two significant roles of the life: that of father and husband. This film will be diffused with CBS and will put in the high-speed motorboat Brad Garrett; Gretchen Egolf, Terry Farrell, Michael Chieffo and Kristen Dalton. (Productions MUSE)

Insert comment on how translator sees "vedette", which apparently means something like "celebrity" as "high-speed motorboat".

Insert "Am I the only one..." comment like: Am I the only one who finds it amusing that both Gretchen and Saul Rubinek have played one-off Nero Wolfe characters? (Yeah, I know Rubinek's a semiregular as Lon Cohen, but in the pilot The Golden Spiders he played Saul Panzer.)

September 28, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.1)
Another slow month, though with signs of promise. That bastion of hard-hitting journalism, Entertainment Tonight, has spake thusly:

For a more in-depth glimpse of Brad Garrett as "Gleason," tune in to tonight's ET. (September 16th. Already missed it.) Then tune in to CBS Sunday, Oct. 13, at 9 p.m. for a look at the life of "The Great One.".

They spake a lot more than that, but that was the only thing I thought deserved comment. Oh, except for:

... physically there is a great disparity between the two. Gleason was only 5 feet 11 inches and Garrett stands 6 feet 8-1/2 inches. To accommodate the difference, the sets were built a bit bigger, and the shorter actors wore special boots to balance the height issue.

I know that Gretchen is far from short, but it's gonna take me weeks to shake this image of her wearing KISS-style boots....

October 2, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.2)
This update is slightly out of chronological order, for good reason. According to, the movie Gleason will indeed be on CBS Sunday, October 13, 9PM ET/PT. Time to warm up the VCRs.

Normal update on the 15th or thereabouts. I should know, I've already written 2 items for it!

September 29, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V26.0)
Subtle editing - compare to the big pic. As a form of restitution for the spate of slowness over the past few months, I've decided to upload (Gasp!) a couple of screencaps for your viewing entertainment.

First up on the docket is a rather low-quality picture from The Talented Mr. Ripley. Eagle eyed viewers will notice a slight oddity when comparing this to the actual scene. (Or even to the full sized image a hyperlink away.)

Think 'bad girl'. Think 'bad girl'. Bah, method acting sucks. Second is one from Martial Law episode "My Man Sammo". Included because I'm apparently a hair fetishist. (What can I say? It was the best she wore it all episode. Though there was a later scene in which I was paying a bit more attention to what her outfit top was - or, more accurately, wasn't - covering than I was to her hair.:)

I was going to toss another image in here from Nero Wolfe in honor of A&E's wise decision to put two shots of Gretchen back in the closing credits of about 75% of the Nero Wolfe episodes, but this item is so text-low and picture-high that it's already (to try standardize the look across multiple platforms/resolutions) requiring use of the <BR CLEAR=ALL> command and that command's attendant extra whitespace. Er... blackspace. So, that will need to wait until next month or so.

But finally, one last image. I haven't taunted the fanboys in far too long. Now, it's time to get back to basics....

(Annoying smoochy sounds.) Ah, Amy Dylan and her C.B. (cuddle bunny/cheating bastard), Dennis Taggert. While many of the screencaps I took came out remarkably low-quality - hey, kinescoping was lousy 60 years ago, too - the fates saw fit to assure that this one came out perfect. Well, perfect except for the "Created by Carlton Cuse" overlaid at the bottom of the screen, which was further overlaid with the damnable TNN black bar. (At least this was before the days when the picture was distorted. Picard's not supposed to be the most alien-looking one on ST:TNG, guys.) All this was solved by the simple measure of chopping off the bottom portion of the image and pretending the letterbox effect was intentional. (The fleshtone blur on "Amy"'s sweater is part of her left hand, which looks more like a hand-shaped fleshtone blur on the complete image.)

"Dennis"'s name in Real Life is Geoffrey Lower. I know very little of him, though I'm sure that he - like most actors - treats this as a standard day at the office and nothing more. HA!

October 1, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V20.2)
The universe can be a cruel and soulless abomination, but it has its moments.

Case in point: I was visiting PvP Online for my daily comic fix and I noticed the following news item: Michael Muhney, one of my brother's friends from gradeschool, is all grown up now and a hot young actor in Hollywood.

I visited the site, since I tend to find most of the stuff PvP's author, Scott Kurtz, links to worth a look. (I respect his knack for willingly angering large numbers of people. I strive for the same.) And I realized I'd been there before. Michael Muhney was in Nicolas. Wanna guess who else was?:)

This time, though, I noticed the e-mail address. I mailed him and he was kind enough to respond - nice guy. He gave me a quick rundown of his role and a good slice of the plot, including parts that completely spoiled the movie for me - not-so-nice guy. (Kidding.:)

Since he's been neglected by what nominal press Nicolas has received, I've decided to fix that and at least give him a little more credit. Here it is, in his own words, with my proofreading and footnotes: I was a significant part in the storyline, I have been fortunate enough to not ever do a "back of the head role"* or anything near that as I have been a series regular on a couple different shows since graduating college. My character worked with Gretchen on advertising stuff and then actually later on in the movie I am standing with her on the site of our "commercial shoot" for our cologne ad and her fiance (Connery) shows up.

(* I had mentioned that he'd been reduced to about the level of a "back of the head" character in the trailer, which is a case of editorial reductio ad absurdum second only to giving Jason Connery less screen time than a teddy bear prop.)

I'll paraphrase the rest, so as to avoid the spoilers. But first, a bit of backstory: Laura - Gretchen's character - has had dreams of Nicolas surrounded by fire. She spins that into a commercial script, which is filmed.

Back to the here-and-now: Fiancé Matt Draper shows up at the filming, and Nicolas decides the time is ripe. What with the fire which is just like the dream, and also a nice way to dispatch his romantic rival, he shows himself (get your mind out of the gutter) for the final confrontation. Michael's character is something of an innocent bystander who happens to get in Nicolas' way, but is still integral to the Big Finale.

Well, I didn't spoil it. I'm proud. Probably screwed something up along the way, but I'm still proud.

In another twist of non-irony irony, Michael was apparently the second choice for the role that eventually went to Tim Meadows in Leap of Faith: Lucas, Faith's boss.

October 19, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.3)
(Update, June 17, 2003 AD: Images have been added. Ones next to timestamps roughly correspond to that point in the film, the ones next to reviews are just there for flavor.)

I almost didn't see Gleason. I found out, 3 hours before it was due to start, that (while I used to get two CBSs and no NBC) my CBSs decided to vanish. This tells you how often I watch them.

One hour of phone calls later, and I wound up imposing upon the same person I imposed upon to watch Leap of Faith. She was kind enough to get her son to tape it for me - and he was good enough to leave the VCR running long so when it the damn football game ran long and pushed everything else back, I didn't get stuck with a truncated movie - and I watched it in 3 sittings in what precious little time I have after work. Now, my thoughts on the film:

Holy Hell.

Man oh man, watching Gleason ripped my guts out. In the really good way.

Writing this Chronicle is going to be an absolute nightmare. How do I write a humorous item on something dramatic but not so overdramatic that it becomes an easy target?

Hmmm. Only one way to do this. Excessive <A NAME> tags.

Let's see, I'll focus on the movie and direction, then the actors (including Brad whatshisface, there, he seemed important), then the script, and I'll save the Martial Rantist-style comments and fun fanboy bits for last. Always leave 'em laughing.

(This review assumes you know what Gleason is and who the major players are. I'll fill in any important information the IMDb has - par for the course - left out.)

* Note: Instead of excessive footnotes*, I'll be pointing out times of certain things in the movie, like the Liberace comment (1:50 - one hour, fifty minutes, commercials not removed) that made me think, "Ah, Liberace. Homosexual only because he had the hots for himself."

But first, a special mention. The direction/cinematography was sharp throughout, on all fronts. One of these fronts was the seemingly insurmountable task of hiding Garrett's height. And it was surprisingly well-hidden - you had to be looking for it to notice the trickery, and even then I only noticed twice: First, when he sang (Is the song called "When you're smilin'"?) onstage (0:39). The dancers are obviously tall women, on taller heels. But there's so many distractions that your eye is drawn away from the shoes, to things like the sharp contrast between the color reality (gorgeous blue dresses) and the black-and-white kinescope monitor. And the women themselves do a good job of distracting me, as well....

The other time? Having Gleason's first trysting partner (1:02) on high heels was one thing. Getting Rubinek out of the slowly-widening shot so we didn't see HIS platform shoes was another! (I feel sorry for all the women who needed to dance about in boosted heels in this movie. Chiropractors in the area must have been swamped.)

The movie itself: Not the greatest of films. For instance, it was obviously slanted against Gleason. Of course, I'm the contrary type who found this a marvelous retort to those Biographyish shows where the star dumps his long-suffering wife (who stayed by him when he couldn't even pay rent) for some busty 20-year-old who really loves her new sugar daddy husband.

Besides, I never found Jackie Gleason funny (0:58 and the moronic "Smooth!" which was even less funny the second time at 1:12). And The Honeymooners? Fat man yelling at wife. If I wanted to see that, I'd buy a pair of binoculars and look into some of the windows around here.

And that's one of the things I found remarkably wonderful about the film - Brad had none of the funny lines. Everyone else did, from bit characters like Jack Warner (around 0:41) to the bootlicking executive (1:21) to Gleason's manager Bullets Durgom** to the distrusting look the choreographer (1:32) gave Gleason when he started hitting on her sister.

** So much for no footnotes. There's two items here that deserve mention:
(0:57) Saul (Bullets Durgom) Rubinek hit all the right notes (both funny and serious) in that scene discussing the Broadway show. Loved it.
(1:27) Bullets's perfect retort when a hungover Gleason says he'll walk (away from the CBS offer): "Yeah, you can barely stand."

(Only thing I really disliked was the excessiveness of the screaming babies during the home life scenes. Jackie Gleason himself gave me my fill of screaming juveniles. Watching him and Genevieve talk/argue/scream over two crying kids grated badly, and was by far the thing I most disliked about their scenes.)

Garrett's acting was powerful throughout. (Including the drunk acting at 0:28 and 0:32.) When with others, he was mostly a bastard, but alone (Getting the letter and old photos from his father at 1:40.) or giving a sort of soliloquy (1:47) he exuded so much... I don't quite know... depth... that it really felt amazing. Kept the character from dissolving into parody, a danger with this script.

Even though I don't like Gleason, Garrett brought in a few moments of roguish charisma (0:15 and 0:21 - Walking into a dressing room, getting a good look, THEN asking "Everyone decent?")

I got chills during the scene between him and Gretchen where he's basically trying to force himself on her one night and then proposes the next morning, after sleeping off his last binge outside her door. Indeed, their scenes all hit me rather hard. Maybe I'm just being a fanboy, but Gretchen's (re)acting twice grabbed me and twisted something in my gut around: The mink coat fight (1:32) opening with the no-holds-barred "What am I supposed to do with it?" - which reminded me all too well of someone I know in a similar situation - and the breakdown in the hospital scene (1:36).

Of course, the scenes didn't write themselves. The writers did an excellent job, even if the characterization is a bit thin and they had to cut out major parts of this semi-fictional Gleason's life to fit everything in. They also wrote a few good arguments there, one of which is found, in its entirety, below. (Copyright be darned! Darned all to HECK!)

But now, on to the fun part. Sub-chronicles, mini-litanies, and deeper obsessions:

0:06 & 0:08 - Daily Depression. Drunk all the time or absent at Christmas. Gee, Dad, don't try to do something really nice, you'll kill the kid.

0:11 - How's the View from up there? Gleason's early standup reminds me of the winners of that standup contest The View had recently. Flat and poorly-timed non-jokes.

0:12 - And Awaaaaaay We Go! First Gretchen's 3rd on the credits list (after Garrett and Rubinek), now she (well, Genevieve Halford) gets such a wonderful intro. I'm sure the whole ballerina thing turned a few heads amongst you folks, though I must admit that, due to either my own eyesight or this TV's perpetual tuning problems, I couldn't tell which one of the "Halford Twins" on stage was her. (Then again, if they were called the Halford Twins, maybe that's the point.)

0:15 - Tell me something I don't know! Calling Gretchen a twig? Well, I called her arms twigs, once....

Gleason 1. 0:26 - I smell something smoking. If there's any smoking fetishists in my audience, I bet they all spontaneously combusted after watching Gretchen's scene in the nightclub. (Hey, we all need a focus for our sexual energy. Just don't wear a hole in your tape, okay?:)

0:40 - Runs in the family. Both mommy Genevieve and baby Geraldine*** look damn good for recently being put through the stress of childbirth....:)

(*** I know the two kids were Geraldine and Linda, but I forget the order. I'm taking a guess.)

1:00 - You go girl! I loved the comment about Jackie wanting not a wife but a "maid and mother". Very astute - that's exactly what most men want.

1:01 - They grow up so fast.... First Gen's newly wed, then she's a new mother, then she's pregnant again, then kiddie #2 is well out of the womb.... How can people say the movie glossed over Gleason's movie career? At the rate the film is moving, they just happened to not touch ground during it.

Hell, I'd think that at least one person is more offended by another cut: Gleason's real-life second wife didn't exist as per the movie.

1:02 - How to know you're not a fanboy. I wonder how many (or few) of us proper fanboys would go out and cheat on our wives if they A) looked like Gretchen and B) had an obvious affinity for sex - those two kids didn't make themselves.

1:20 - Oh, man, I'm creeped out. I don't know what's better. Brad Garrett's Gleason or Michael Chieffo's Art Carney. Man, does Chieffo look the part!

Gleason 2. 1:33 - Fight of the moment: The mink coat fight, encapsulated here in low-grade MP3 goodness. After that "You think I'm stupid?!" line, I'm kind of afraid to make fun of Gretchen or her family. First time she's evoked the feeling in me that she might possess enough of an animus to rip one of my lungs out.

1:37 - :nosaelG Think of the Gleason ad, the Real Media version of which I downloaded from CBS's website (turns out their you-can't-download Real Audio RTSP servers are the same as their download-friendly HTTP servers, you just need to change the protocol type). Why, in that ad, did they see fit to mirror the shot of Jackie snuggling up with someone other than his wife? As if butchering two of Gretchen's lines into an obvious mismatch wasn't bad enough.

1:54 - Quote of the moment: From Kristen Dalton, playing Audrey Meadows playing Alice Kramden, commenting on a joke from Brad Garrett/Jackie Gleason/Ralph Kramden: "I don't think it's funny."

1:55 - Bastard to the end. Nothing like consistency. Nah, you don't suppose your family suffered a bit?

2:00 - Thoughts from the closing credits. Well, kiddies, I hope you saw it. I hope you taped it, too. Not only did Gretchen look simply ravishing through most of the movie, but I also found she did a very good job of acting this one. Maybe it's just sheer sentimentality (the last "new" thing I saw of hers was Cosby - oh, and the Nicolas trailer), but since not one of the reviewers I've read has seen fit to strongly disagree with me in regard to either her acting or her looks, I might be on to something, rather than just on something.

Reviews, you ask? Yes! Google's web and news searches have turned a few reviews, with quotes below in italics. My comments in plaintext.

We also see the beginnings of his romance with a ballet dancer, Genevieve Halford (Gretchen Egolf, giving a solid performance in a thankless role). - Dan Jewel, Media Life.

Of course, this is one of the few things in the review I agreed with.:)

Gleason 3. He has no success whatsoever as a comic, but still meets and marries a gorgeous ballet dancer (Gretchen Egolf). They have children and in no time flat he becomes a no-talent, womanizing boozer.
Under the direction of his agent (Saul Rubinek), however, he becomes a hugely successful, powerful, womanizing boozer.
What works in this movie is the supporting cast who are all sterling. - Linda Stasi, New York Post.

Again, all I agree with....:) For instance, I did think her claim that CBS is "letting its current star destroy (Gleason's) legacy" was a bit much. No one is going to start hating their favorite comic because of this movie. The reaction that reviewers have had has made that point obvious enough!

While Garrett does the best work of his career, he has no worthy combatants. The only actor that gives him something to bounce off is Saul Rubinek as Gleason's alternately coaxing, craven and take-charge manager. Other cast members seem miscast or insubstantial. - Kay McFadden, The Seattle Times.

Okay, almost none of the reviewers.:)

Gleason 4. An estimable film career, which included pictures ranging from The Hustler to Smokey and the Bandit, is never brought into play. And within Mr. Gleason's orbit, only two supporting characters really register - his wife, Genevieve Halford (Gretchen Egolf) and his long-suffering manager, Bullets Durgom (Saul Rubinek). The actor playing Art Carney - Michael Chieffo - sure is a dead-ringer, though. - Ed Bark, The Dallas Morning News

Wow. A reviewer I sort of almost kind of maybe agree with.

Update, October 24, 2002 AD: And more, this one the most thought-provoking of the bunch....

Gretchen Egolf plays Genevieve Halford, Gleason's first wife, but unfortunately, the script doesn't do much beyond portraying Genevieve as the suffering wife, the victim of Gleason's affairs with other women. And while Egolf does a good job of showing Genevieve's angst and anger, she doesn't show the entire woman. Her acting and the script don't say enough about who Genevieve was. - Dave Mason, Ventura County Star

An interesting comment, one of the most thought-out ones I've seen with regards to Gretchen's acting, as well as with the script's treatment of the 3rd-most important character in the film.

Update, October 26, 2002 AD: One more:

Putting some smile into this yawning abyss of depression is Gretchen "I Should Change My Name" Egolf, who plays Gleason's wife, Genevieve Halford.
When they first meet, Garrett is absolutely charming as Gleason tries to woo her. And Egolf takes Genevieve from naive enamored girl to disenchanted wife and mother with just a look of her expressive eyes. - M.J. Wilde, The Albuquerque Tribune.

Well, since ol' M.J. mixed niceties with low blows, I'll do the same.... The eye comment is rather nice. Evocative, even. Nice to see someone who's so complimentary, even when that person is so deeply in denial about how awful their name is that they see fit to mock others. After all, does anyone who likes their full name go by their initials?

Update, October 26, 2002 AD: Well, okay, two more:

The supporting cast is strong, including Saul Rubinek as devoted agent Bullets Durgom, Gretchen Egolf as first wife Genevieve Halford, Kristen Dalton as Audrey Meadows and Micheal Chieffo as Art Carney, though none of these characters are fully realized as individuals in their own right. - Barry Garron, The Hollywood Reporter.

And that's really the big thing. None of the characters were even close to being Real People, even when they were all supposedly based on same. Oh, well, what do you want from a CBS Movie of the Week?

Update, December 3, 2002 AD: Two more more:

Gleason 5. Rick Podell and Michael Preminger's script got rewritten "15 times," Garrett said. But it still contains the kind of scenes you've seen a million times, such as when Jackie goes to the movies with his girlfriend, Genevieve, (well-played by Gretchen Egolf, who grew up in Lancaster County and has appeared in Martial Law and Roswell). - Jonathan Storm, The Philadelphia Inquirer (Oct. 13, 2002)

Impressive. About the first time I've seen someone cut into the writers and not cut into Gretchen. They've been pretty well linked up until this point.

Directed by Howard Deutch, "Gleason" is full of other fine performances. Saul Rubinek is Gleason's dutifully patient agent, Bullets Durgom. Gretchen Egolf plays Gleason's first wife, Genevieve Halford, like an electric iron heating up from off to max in two seconds, (...) - Preston Turegano, Television Guide

That's... interesting. I suppose it's good, but all I can think of right now is the phrase 'She could press my pants any day!'

October 20, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V20.3)
First a bit of site maintenance: I might have mentioned this before, but due to work and other time drains that wouldn't be essential if I could avoid eating, updates will take a bit longer to get uploaded. Assume the Sunday after the 15th of the month and you'll be okay.

But on to something a little more relevant. I was told recently that I'm using alt tags wrong. My cutesy messages are not appropriate, don't describe the image well, etc. etc. Well, to those of you who feel this way: I'm sorry. However, it gets a bit dull typing in "Picture of Gretchen Egolf", "Picture of Gretchen Egolf", "Picture of Mason Phillips" (for variety), "Picture of Gretchen Egolf", etc., etc., etc.

October 26, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V23.2)
While this whole Wonder Woman rumor was one of amusement or annoyance, depending on precisely one's outlook on life, it did spawn the best headline ever: Egolf Not After Pilot License for The Invisible Plane.

November 3, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V27.0)
Assume the Sunday after the 15th of the month and you'll be okay. So much for that bright idea: If I waited that long, we'd miss this. Though I'm sure some of you will because I mentioned when I'd be updating.:\ Too late now, and there's always reruns....

(Folks, check in every now and then, either here or on the recent updates page. Anything urgent WILL get posted ASAP.)

But anyway.... The excellent Google and its Usenet service have provided me with the following non-proofread tidbit for what's on TV November 13th, also summarized here....

LAW & ORDER - (10-11 p.m. ET) "Hitman"
IT'S MURDER FOR HIRE WHEN A HUSBAND IS GUN DOWN AT HOME -- When a local contractor is found on his living room floor shot in the head in an apparent robbery gone awry, Detectives Briscoe (Jerry Orbach) and Green (Jesse L. Martin) believe the homicide to be the work of a professional and set their sights on the victim's well-kept young bride (guest star Gretchen Egolf) and her alleged lover (guest star Bobby Cannavale) as the masterminds behind this conspiracy. The case takes a strange turn when A.D.A. Southerlyn (Elisabeth Rohm) discovers the supposed hit man (guest star) is currently residing in federal prison, slightly hindering Executive A.D.A. McCoy's (Sam Waterston) prosecution. Fred Thompson and S. Epatha Merkerson also star.

That's on NBC, and sometime later this week, we'll have verification in form of the "next episode" item on NBC's own Law & Order page.

November 3, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.4)
You may wish to skip up above to read a few more Gleason reviews, tacked onto the end of the main Chronicle for that TV movie.

And since CBS doesn't seem to want to delete it.... here's the RealMedia Gleason promo. Share and enjoy.

November 15, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V27.1)
Well, that was fun. I finally managed to get an NBC feed, only it was one that cut in and out randomly thanks to poor reception. But I sort of saw it. And I had a fallback: Someone I know at work taped it for me. Old tape with shaky tracking, but a bit of static is preferable to something that cuts in and out randomly. Thanks again, Pam. I'm grateful.:)

So, without further adieu.... No timecodes this run around: Just a rundown, Gretchen's scenes (and the guest credits) in order:

Scene 1: Wow, look at the letters on THAT one! Gretchen (as Sherry Rizzoti, or some other such spelling) first in the guest star credit list. Nice big lettering, too.

Scene 2: Blonde ambition.... While she took one trip around the peroxide stream for her run as Vanessa Whitaker on Roswell, it looks like (between this and Gleason) she's having one more run at it.

While I'm thinking about it... ever catch yourself leaning slightly, as if the TV were 3D and leaning would let you get a better look at something? This has no relevance to the rather tightly-fitting outfit Gretchen was wearing, nope.

Scene 3: Negatives. Need the negatives. The only compelling reason for high-definition TV: to see if the nearly-naked female back in those photos the private investigator was holding was the real thing or a stunt back. (It's 12:45 AM here, folks. Forebrain left, hormones took over. This is gonna be sexual all the way through.)

Scene 4: Retractions and other patching up. Wrists are not my thing. I love legs, hair, hips, noses, breasts, but a bony wrist just chills me. Oh well, at least her arms above her elbows are looking a bit meatier...

Scene 4b: Retractions and other tearing down. ... but after the tour-de-force of Gleason, this weak performance just seems dreadful.

Scene 5: Thirty, love. Tennis outfit. Mmmm. Ponytail. Eeeegh. (Pauses for an annoying Anna Kournikova joke someone's bound to make.)

But who puts a handcuff on over a wrist-guard thing?

Scene 6: Thirt- Tennis outfit, covered. Ponytail, not. Eeeegh again. (I'm sorry, but there's not much you can say about a scene whose main component is "Not guilty.")

Scene 7: Better. Floral, lavender, no ponytail. Selling her cuddle bunny up the river. Ah, true love.

Scene 8: Oidah in the coit! Business suit. Someone in wardrobe loves me.

Also, more of the ever-entertaining boyfriend and girlfriend selling each other up the river. They're both so guilty-seeming that it can't be either of them.

Scene 8b: Correction on the retraction. Okay, Gretchen still does the you-sold-me-out-you-bastard look well.

Scene 9: Non-Gretchen obligatory ranting. Oh, that ending is such a Deus Ex Machina. Nine seasons is a long time to do one show, but this is reaching. The only good part was the line about dousing yourself with rum and lighting a Cohiba. I got a laugh from that one.

November 17, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V28.0)
From a fan page dedicated to another actress:

Q: Does Elisabeth Sladen herself have anything to do with this website?
A: Lis is in no way connected with this website and truth be told I have never actually met Lis. I do know Lis has seen the site and she even wrote me a very nice letter about it. I have always kept in mind with this site that Lis is a real person and as such I have tried to be tasteful and to respect her privacy and that of her family.

(Looks around.) I am so going to Hell for this page....

November 25, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V20.4)
I was discussing an amusing tidbit with someone I know. (Or was it just another of my personalities? I forget, there's so many of them....) The tidbit: I've had a dramatic effect on search engines. Both Hotbot, Overture and whatever MSN uses (at a guess, every site that uses a database built by Inktomi) have taken my information to heart. Way back when, I made reference to the URL, in this fashion: "Is the acting business really this lucrative?"

Well, all those engines mentioned have shunned the page's own TITLE tag and used my A HREF. As such, all these sites list a page for donors to a theater group as having the title "really this lucrative". Probably not the greatest turn of events for anyone wishing to find a place to donate.

And now, from tragedy and theater groups to amusement and theater groups: In the MSN engine, this same discussion partner tripped over a site which I hadn't been too. (Given my sense of humor, he thought I'd have mentioned it by now if I'd seen it - very good guess, he knows me too well!:) It has some fake album covers (assembled out of clipart) that can be rather amusing. At least, the Gretchen Egolf one in the "Family and Friends" section is good for a laugh. (Read the bottom corner - it's the best part and easy to miss.)

Now, before you ask the obvious question (Friend or family?), I'll answer it: Friend. They've both been in the same theater group, along with a good number of the other names on the list.

Vanilla indeed!

December 4, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.5)
You may wish to skip up above for even more Gleason reviews, stolen from various sources. My comments, as always, are copyrighted and I'll sue your ass off if you use them on your webpage.

December 14, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V28.1)
Gretchen Egolf did not win the Emmy for this look, for some reason. Someone seems to be watching out for Gretchen's Internet interests. A dead, but viable, link to appeared in Google this week. A bit of searching revealed it was registered by a company that does personal/public managing and such things for actors. Amongst their other clients are two Buffy the Vampire Slayer actors and some guy who's a get-rich-quick huckster with as many pending paternity lawsuits as most men have testicles.

Not the greatest of clientele, that last one. But anyway.... Since the SAG would take a fit if an agent or some other type registered someone else's name, it implies a valid connection between the company and the actress somewhere.

Does this mean a site is in the wings? Nope. Doesn't look like it. The other celebs (oh, and the huckster) have their URLs - all 3 have proper-name URLs - registered through their own companies/offices or through ISPs. All three have webpages. None have them registered through the company that has the URL above.

So, it looks more like a preemptive strike to get the URLs off the market - a similar one without the dash is listed for the same company. Can't say as I blame 'em. I mean, imagine if someone like me snapped them up!

Oh, and the picture's here 'cause I want it to be.

December 21, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V16.08)
Remember, way back when, when I mentioned a comprehensive - at least, more comprehensive than anything else out there - listing of the assorted plays Gretchen's been in? Well, the link has moved. This link is the new one.

Also of nominal interest is the search engine, which returns 14 results for the search string "egolf". Not much worth reading in there right now, except for one on Marian Seldes, who has complimentary things to say about several people, including her Ring Round the Moon costars: Gretchen Egolf, who plays Isabel in Ring Round the Moon ("she's like a dream to me"); and Toby Stephens, who plays the twins in Moon. "Toby is fearless," she says. "He's daring. I think people feel I'm confident, and I'm a bundle of anxieties. But I feel Toby is confident."

December 29, 2002 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V26.1)
I just found out that diligent schedule-checking fans got a nice little Christmas present - Gretchen's Cosby appearance Christmas Day, and her Nero Wolfe appearance the night of the 28th. Little too late for everyone else, though.

Side note: Once I have a VHS copy to my satisfaction, I stop looking for it. Once I stop looking for it, I forget to report on it. Which means you'll need to take the initiative. Resources:

Search here for Cosby and see how it fits in with your local schedule (if it's a few days off, etc.).

Read through here for Nero Wolfe. Look for "The Doorbell Rang".

Good luck. Update: December 30, 2002. Especially since I learned Nero Wolfe has been cancelled. Evidently A&E thinks The View makes more intelligent fare. So much for quality cable programming.:/

January 29, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V29.0)
Ah, Dido's Here With Me is wending its gentle way through my headphone cable, so it must be time for a Roswell related update.

Roswell is on the Sci-Fi channel, apparently weekdays at 6 PM Eastern and Pacific.

Let's see. At the rate of 5 episodes a week, starting the 13th, 22 eps a season, assuming they run them all, that means season 2 (and Gretchen's episodes) start around.... February 12th. And she gets killed off Valentine's day. How romantic.

(Time to do an early update....)

February 16, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V29.1)
My lightly-messed hair makes me look your age. Oh, wait, I am your age. Since I couldn't find anything jucier than the Roswell bit above, the rest of this month's update will be a Usenet post from the aftermath. And no, I didn't write it.

This, of course, proved to be a problem for _Roswell_ throughout its three-year run: How it repeatedly brought up intriguing plot points, then blatantly contradicted them (and/or totally eliminated them within a few episodes). I just finished rewatching "Ask Not," and it's frustrating to know that Gretchen Egolf's character of Vanessa Whitaker will disappear after a total of *three* episodes.

Hope you enjoy the image. And the caption is based off of birthdate info from the IMDb. So it could be dead wrong. Just a little warning.

Oh.... Speaking of the IMDb, I'm in the middle of an e-mail dialogue with the webmistress of a fansite for another actor, and I've just mentioned that the IMDb is unreliable. Which reminded me of this tidbit:

Try this link. Looks good? Well, try this one. Looks like someone forgot the last-name-first convention! (Oh, and the fact that people who play "so-and-so's wife" tend to be overwhelmingly female.)

March 10, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V30.0)
V30.0. Wow. If my numbering weren't so arbitrary, it'd be a milestone.

Anyway... .This is gonna be a weird Chronicle, I just watched the reason I've been seeing "burninate" jokes lately. Very funny. I'm still giggling.

Okay, so I'm poking about Google, and I find this PDF. Makes an interesting read. At least, some bits of it. I'll quote the most relevant parts along with my typically irrelevant, snide and sexist comments below.

Mandatory legal junk: I don't own any of this stuff I'm quoting. Copied only for humorous purposes. All rights reserved, and all your base are belong to us. Respect the owners of all copyrights, or we'll send Trogdor to burninate you. Or maybe just send The Archon to tie you down and sing a few Kamelot songs off-key. So, anyone else got the hots for Melissa Gilbert after seeing her cleavage-riffic SAG awards appearance? Plergb, where "Plergb" is everything else accurate, mandatory and/or funny, including but not limited to all proofreading and corrections. I am such a rebel.

BIGGER WARNING: I cuss a bit below, including some blasphemy against at least one member of the Christian Trinity. I felt it was needed. Oh well. Click here if you feel differently. And: In between here and the next asterisk bar thingy, my comments in icy blue italics, quotes are in plaintext.

* * *

We're Not Making This Up. (Ouch.) The refined detail of the 24P picture was so intense that makeup had to be used sparingly. In some cases the filmmakers, when screening dailies, found that they could see the even the tiniest pores on an actor's face. Co-producer Lisa Kanovsky, after viewing the dailies, held an emergency meeting with supervising makeup artist Monica Jimenez. "If makeup isn't blended or if there's any kind of dark line or eyeliner -- the kinds of things you can do in film -- you see all of that in high-def video. Fortunately, we had a very large monitor on the set." Kanovsky had a discussion with Makeup about softening everything for high definition. "What we decided is that fortunately we have beautiful actors and they didn't need a lot of makeup."

Well, that's nice to say. Maybe we should start calling Marcus "Cutiebuns", or something.

(Snip to another section.)

Actor, Uninterrupted. Shooting on high def meant that the camera was frequently left running between takes, eliminating the classic "cut!" command and the scene clapper. For lead actress Gretchen Egolf, the break from filming tradition was a welcome one. "There is a momentum that you create during a scene that's really helpful to an actor. If you have to stop and start so much, like on normal shoots, it gets a bit frustrating. You can lose your energy." All in all, the intense technical requirements of the shoot affected the actors the least, Egolf said. "An actor's job is the same no matter what."

Less enthusiastic about the lengthy takes was actor Jason Connery, who missed the traditional film calls, such as "speed" and "action." Marcus Graham, in the role of Nicolas, concurs. "Sometimes it worked against us. The cut in action is something that actors come to rely on."

Another challenge for Graham, who played an 18th century character, was his period costumes. "We had fire on the set and it was hot. Also we were shooting in the middle of the summer in a tin shed [sound stage], wearing woolen clothing from the 18th century, which didn't help."

Hey, I wear a tinfoil hat all the time. You do that and then we'll talk about excessive heat retention, brother.

First person who uses something approximating the expression "F--- you and your tin hat!" gets smacked.

On a Roll. Heat was not the only physical challenge for the actors. In one scene, Nicolas paints Laura.
Y'know, I was doing a proofreading run this morning and I realized I referenced that scene no less than four times. Tells you something. Nothing good, but something.
"It was a fantastic scene, painting Gretchen's body," Graham said.
Oh, great. Now you've done it. All the fanboys are going to want to lock you in their basements and torture you in a fit of jealous rage. You're going to have to hide somewhere while it all passes. I know! Hide in my basem... er... attic. Yep, Mr. Graham, just down these stairs. Yep, they curve upwards after a bit and lead to my attic. Yep, just keep walking this way....
Adds Egolf, "[Marcus] was very natural through all of the physical scenes, which made it nice for me. I'd never done that stuff on film before and he made me feel at ease."
Drink. I need something to drink.

After the actors completed the filming day in which the body-painting scene occurred, director Shaner came back the next morning and asked them to do it again.
Shaner, you effing bastard. I hate you. Get in the basement with Marcus.
"There was really no room for inhibition," notes Egolf.
(Sound of someone biting their tongue hard.)
A closed set helped the actors maintain an intimate tone during the shooting of the scene, as did Egolf's familiarity with paint itself. "My mother is a painter, so it reminded me of home. I get a really safe feeling when paint is involved," she notes.
(Reads.) (Rereads.) Jesus Christ, that weirds me out.

Now, I'm sure some of you are rather offended at this point, either by my language or by my obsession with this whole painting scene thing. I really am sorry, but part of it is the original document. Of 21 pages:
1 is the cover,
1 1/2 are synopsis (2.5 total so far),
1 1/2 are history of the project (4 total),
4 are stuff about the 24p camera (8 total),
1 is the stuff quoted above and the paragraph below (9 total),
4 are actor bios (13 total),
4 are other crew info (17 total),
4 are just a reroll of the movie's credits.

I might be offensive, but they devoted almost a whole page, of the 16 pages of text, to what might be the sexiest scene of the movie. Don't random screams of 'HEY! NAKED FLESH!' in the middle of 'It was a brave new beginning for the craft of filmmaking.' just seem to be pandering a bit?

One universally acknowledged boon to the actors was an enormous high-def monitor on the set, which allowed them to see exactly what was being shot. "It revealed the fact that this [medium] looks like amazingly pure film," Connery says.
Not to mock an actor, but I've read a few rants regarding Star Wars Episode 2: Anakin Acts All Moony For Natalie Portman, which was also recorded digitally, and they didn't like it so much. They felt it was too pastel, too dull, too real! People don't go to movies for purity, they go for a vivid world they can enter into for an hour and a bit.

Gretchen Egolf (Laura Miller) Gretchen recently starred as Amy Dylan in the CBS series Martial Law and was guest lead on three episodes of the WB's hit series Roswell. Having appeared in the Oscar-nominated features, "The Talented Mr. Ripley" (as Fran) and "Quiz Show,"
You can tell a marketer wrote that. Notice that they only mentioned the name of the character that had a name? They didn't say "The Talented Mr. Ripley" (as Fran) and "Quiz Show," (as Student at Book Party), because that would have labelled it as a bit part?
Egolf's role of Laura is her first lead in a feature film. Recently moving back to Manhattan where she took up residence in Greenwich Village,
Tell me something I don't know. Oh, wait, you just did. Thanks.
Gretchen is currently starring in A&E's "Nero Wolfe" detective movie series.
The theatrically trained actress is having fun working in this '40s genre. "I just love film noir acting," she laughs.

A graduate of the Julliard School, Egolf has impressive credits on the stage, both on and off Broadway and in London. She starred on Broadway in "Ring Round The Moon" and in "Jackie: An American Life" (where she reprised her role in London), and off-Broadway in the David Mamet's acclaimed "Speed The Plow."

As "Nicolas" was shot on a tight 18-day schedule, Gretchen had to keep her star power revved up as she appeared in practically every scene in the movie. "Gretchen worked every day, for the whole day, with the exception of one afternoon," co-producer Kanovsky notes. "She was such a trooper." Of Egolf, co-star Jason Connery notes, "She was totally committed to what we were doing -- very versatile."

I once wrote the following: "From a fanboy standpoint, it looks like the blockbuster of the year (whatever year it comes out)." 1.5-2 hours of solid Gretchen. Oooh.

(Snip to a caption.)

Gretchen Egolf says of the fantasy element in her role, "I didn't find it that difficult because my training is in theater. Classical plays have a high level of non-reality, and I'm very quick to go to that place."

(Snip to another caption.)

Dawnn Lewis and Gretchen Egolf on the set of "Nicolas." In addition to acting, Lewis cowrote the popular theme song to A Different World, on which she was a cast member.
Only one problem: The right half of the picture was cut to make room for the caption, so GRETCHEN'S NOT THERE ANYMORE! Oh, except for her knees. Real good job on the promo materials, guys.

(Snip to some more text.)

John de Lancie(Bernard Kirby) John De Lancie is a well-known screen and television actor, known to Trekkies
Oh, now you've done it. Now the Trekkers will be locking the marketroids into their basements and torturing them due to the "Trekkie" comment. This is not a bad thing.
as the venerable "Q."
Venerable? Ummm. Not the word I'd use. "Mercurial" if I was feeling polite, "psycho" if not. Providing tonight's guest opinion, Rez: "I couldn't stand him! 'What if Joe Isuzu lived in the 23rd century?'"
Describing his image of the character, who appeared in numerous Star Trek films and episodes, he recalls a quote originally used to describe the poet Lord Byron: "[He's] mad, bad and dangerous to know." Like Gretchen Egolf, de Lancie attended Julliard.
See? Even de Lancie is calling Q mad!

(Snip to some more text.)

Of perhaps all of the members of the production, editor Alberts spent the most time reviewing the footage. "We were extra lucky in the casting," he says. "Victoria Burrows had tried to get bigger name female leads." When that didn't happen, Gretchen Egolf-- relatively unknown in film--was signed. "She turns in such a great performance-- very vulnerable and warm," Alberts notes.
Oh, that's cold. "We tried to get someone, you know, important, and when that didn't pan out we got whatever broad looked good. What do you know, turned out she could read lines." What next, are the marketers going to mix quotes and narrative to make a snide comment about Jason Connery getting the role because of who his father is? (Sean Connery, in case you didn't know.) Marcus Graham landing the role because he was blackmailing the producer? Promotional materials should NOT say things like this, people!

(Snip to some more text.)

Victoria Burrows (Casting Director) A heavyweight feature-film casting director ("Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King," "Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers," "Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring,"
Stretch it out a bit more, boys. "Lord of the Rings: All of the actors in the Nazgul scenes", "Lord of the Rings: Saruman and everyone he sees", "Lord of the Rings: The guys with Hobbit feet", "Lord of the Rings: All the guys in the 15th scene with Frodo", "Lord of the Rings: Tom Bombadil"
"Swimming Upstream," "Thin Blue Lie," "The Muse"), Burrows has a longstanding relationship with the director. She signed on to this independent film--the second Shaner production she's cast--"because of the people involved." "I think that Pete is a creative man of integrity and incredible dedication," she notes. "He does what he says he is going to do." Although name actresses were approached for the role of Laura, Burrows felt from the first audition that newcomer Gretchen Egolf was the woman for the part.
There it is again! Jeez! At least this one, were it alone, could be passed off as "Well, we were looking for a major celebrity, but none of the likely candidates fit our artistic vision."

* * *

March 18, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V30.0001)
Well, I needed something to link to above. Here, have a free picture.

April 14, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V29.2)
For those of you who missed Roswell last time, here's another trip around the mulberry bush. From the Sci-Fi channel's schedule:

13-MAY-03 6:00 PM: ASK NOT
14-MAY-03 6:00 PM: SURPRISE
19-MAY-03 6:00 PM: HARVEST

All times Eastern, I think. The 12th is a Monday. Enjoy!

May 17, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V29.25)
Slow month, again. Oh, well. Roswell's a fun watch. Even the really bad acting just before Whitaker takes the electric dirt nap.

And, in cooler news, I'll be upgrading my PC and bunging a new video capture card into the mix. With any luck, I'll be able to pull a few Gleason and Law & Order images.

Which is certainly needed in this televisory dry spell. But if she's back in New York, maybe Gretchen's decided to refocus on the stage. That'll make updates a touch harder to come by....

BTW, in Roswell news, get a load of Shiri 'Liz Parker' Appleby introducing Vanessa Whitaker. Sounds to me like she stalls for a moment while she tries to recall Whitaker's name. 'Ehhh.... Whitaker.'

June 17, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V29.26)
So we just got in under the wire, since Roswell isn't being shown anymore, I'm told. Oh, well. Hopefully it'll be back.

In other news, I found a transcript with some interesting bits in it:



Guest Starring
DAN BUTLER as Summers
JOSH HOPKINS as Eric Keller
TALIA BALSAM as Marie Malone

Any ideas what show this is, and if this is for real?

June 17, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.6)
You may wish to nip up above to see some of the screencaps I did for Gleason, scattered through the review, thanks to my new video capture card. (ATI TV Wonder, or something. Doesn't work in Windows 98. Thank God I'm triple-booting to 2K and XP.)

June 21, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V29.261)
Okay, so I get the brains to punch "Without a Trace" into Google and find out it's a current CBS show.

I do a bit more looking and puzzle out that, if they're showing reruns in order, the supposed Gretchen-containing episode "The Source" will be on around July 10th. (Be sure to check the link above for the week preceeding the 10th to see if this is the case.)

Sounds like it's a reeeeely tiny cameo though. (Or is that a 'bit part'?:)

June 22, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V31.0)
Wow. This would me interesting if not so out of date. To quote:

'January 9, 2002 - Scott Wexler, Gotham-based ICM agent, has joined Artists Management Group (AMG) as a talent manager, effective immediately. "I jumped at the opportunity to work at AMG," Wexler said. "Through past experiences with AMG managers, I've found that we share the same drive and principles when it comes to client representation, and I am very happy to make the cross-country move to be a part of the team." Wexler, who had been an agent at ICM for the past three years, relocates to L.A., bringing with him a client roster that includes Josh Lucas, Justin Bartha, Megan Dodds, Gretchen Egolf and Alexa Davalos.'

June 23, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V29.2615 and a half.)
This used to be part of the item two above. BTW, the pictures mentioned below are shrunk using height and width tags. Meaning you can enlarge 'em just by right-clicking on 'em and choosing 'View Image', if you use Netscape. If not, just save the image to your hard drive and open it from there.

(REALLY QUICK AND CHEAP UPDATE, JUNE 22: If you live somewhere near a theater called The Flea, which I've been led to believe 'is located at 41 White Street between Church and Broadway, three blocks south of Canal, close to the 1, 9, N, R, Q, W, 6, A, C and E subway lines', presumably in New York City, then read this page. It's a play, Gretchen is in it, previews began June 11th, it opens July 2nd and runs through August 2nd.)

(Well, you can read the page if you're not in NYC. It's got pictures. Pictures are good.)

July 14, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V29.262)
Wow. Sure are a lot of lesbians around here lately, huh?

#include <not-that-there's-anything-wrong-with-that.h>

First there was the aborted Shelby Corsair. Then there was Rose, her character in the play Getting Into Heaven, unless I'm reading that press release wrong.

And now, I will indiscriminately quote from the Without A Trace transcript. Her character name is Vanessa W... er... Thompson. Yeah, Thompson.

SCENE #12:


(VANESSA THOMPSON talks with JACK. She hands him an envelope.)

VANESSA THOMPSON: It's an inventory receipt for an independent forensics lab. They do mostly evidence testing for defense attorneys.

JACK: Did she say what it was for?

VANESSA THOMPSON: She just said to give it to you.

(Quick flashback to: VANESSA THOMPSON exits the police station. DELIA RIVERS waits for her on the sidewalk.)


VANESSA THOMPSON: What're you doing here?

DELIA RIVERS: I, um, wanted to see you. I've missed you.

VANESSA THOMPSON: Me or the leads?

DELIA RIVERS: Okay, I deserve that. Relationships have never been my strongest suit.

VANESSA THOMPSON: You were good when you were there. (DELIA is quiet.) (concerned) Is everything okay?

DELIA RIVERS: There's some pretty heavy stuff going on.

VANESSA THOMPSON: (rolls her eyes) Well, that's not new.

DELIA RIVERS: And I need you to do something for me. It's not what you're thinking. I don't need you to tell me anything, or confirm anything. It's just that if ... anything happens to me, I need you to give this to Jack Malone at the FBI.

(DELIA holds out an envelope.)

VANESSA THOMPSON: What are you talking about? Are you in trouble?

DELIA RIVERS: I can't talk about it. But please take it. Okay? (pause) Please.

(VANESSA takes the envelope.)

(End of flashback. Resume to present.)

(JACK opens the envelope and removes the receipt.)

VANESSA THOMPSON: No one really knew about us, but, uh ... Delia and I were involved, for almost a year. I was also a source for her.

JACK: She tell you anything else?


JACK: When did she give you this?

VANESSA THOMPSON: Uh, Tuesday afternoon. Must've been a few hours before she disappeared.

(And now I will cease quoting.)

Earth-shattering, no? Though, in unrelated news, between Gretchen's obvious fondness for stage gigs and the obscenity-with-a-dollar-sign-at-the-front that I hear NYC charges for filming there, I don't think TV roles will be heavy. So I take what I can get, being the bottom-feeder I am.

This role added to the whole lesbian oeuvre (I can't believe I just said that) by having her counterpart be non-White. Black, to be specific.

#include <i'm-not-being-racist-just-because-I-don't-call-them-African-Americans.h>

It also added to the whole cop oeuvre, since Gretchen's character was also a uniformed member of the NYPD. (Looked better out of the uniform, though. Hmm? No, no, I mean in street clothes! You people are hopeless deviants. Of course, so am I, in addition to being a bottom-feeder.)

Suddenly I'm getting a ton of Martial Law flashbacks. Let's see.... The "every cop in New York" blooper.... The time where Amy Dylan was busted down to meter maid.... Some really bad hair moments.... Me getting strapped to a bed and interrogated.... Whips.... Chains....

Hmmm? What? I'm drifting? Damn straight I am.

Screencaps will follow, when I can manage to rig the VCR up next to the PC again.

I'm trying to think of a decent gag to end this item, but every time I try to think of something, I wind up using the phrases "Mason Phillips" and "under my desk" in combination with other words.

(Feels.) And I can safely verify that I'm the only one under my desk.

#include <God-that-line-sucked.h>

July 20, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V31.1)
This following item is better known as Len's Lack-of-Sleep Litanies 25.0.

Oh, cool! William Rabkin (Martial Law season 2 co-producer and writer-typey-person) e-mailed me about my site this month. He offered some helpful info and mentioned that both he and Lee Goldberg (other Martial Law season 2 co-producer and writer-typey-person) were pleasantly surprised that Gretchen Egolf (ahem, cough, cough) had shown up on an Episode of Nero Wolfe. (For the record, they weren't producers or anything on Nero Wolfe, just freelancers who wrote a couple of episodes.)

Now I have the complete set, both Lee Goldberg and William Rabkin. This is cool. Maybe I should have some bobble-heads made of them in commemoration. With some little director's chairs so I could have them posed like in the picture at the top of this page.

Goldberg & Rabkin bobble-heads. There's a market in this, I know there is!

August 16, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.0)
So, she's bisexual.

What's that blue thing? Oh, put away the lubricants, I'm talking about Gretchen's character of Rose in Getting Into Heaven. The image of an audience I project onto you people makes me sick.

How about some reviews? I promise it won't hurt. Much.

This opening night image was nicked from Playbill, by the way. The fellow is James Badge Dale. He played Jed, white rapper and father of Rose's child. I read a synopsis of this play and I've got to say, I can't follow it. This one's sleeping with that one, who's fathered this other one's child. This one and the other are living together, and the kid falls out a window.... I don't know why, but when I found out that the child meets his demise, a one-line comment in the middle of who-slept-with-whom and who-released-what-single, I laughed. I found the complete shift of synopsis tone was hilarious. I presume it was more dramatic onstage.

The great thing about New York theater is that, no matter how convinced you are that you have seen the world's worst play, given sufficient time you will eventually see one that tops it. (...) Gretchen Egolf is a fetching Rose.... - Kelly Monaghan, the Tribeca Trib.

Well, uh, we're off to a good start!

But mostly, wretched craftsmanship sabotages the play. Scenes start too early or drag on too long or lack a middle. The exposition is confusing and aimless, leaving the audience to piece together the past. Inconsistent characters switch goals without explanation; sometimes it seems like the actors have skipped entire pages of dialogue. Putting aside the production values (especially the music composed by Draper and her husband Michael Wolff) and one great performance (Egolf, who nails a few character roles between volatile scenes as Rose), audiences might feel like they've seen a script workshop, not a finished play. - review by Aaron Leichter.

We're on a roll! The play bites it, Gretchen doesn't, sort of! Wooo!

Gretchen Egolf plays Rose and cameos as the mysterious Rose look-alike nurse (a plot loose end) with impressive character range and believability. She quickly switches from earthy, experienced Rose to uptight, nerdy and naive Amber. (...) Egolf and Badge-Dale together have wonderfully dark chemistry, making their pull towards and against each other palpable. - Amanda Cooper, CurtainUp.

See note above about James Badge Dale and the magic vanishing hyphen.

Flaunt that look of "Let battle commence!" It changes nothing, and it never will. And on that matter of self-defense, I'm not worried; I'd be dead and buried still.... If looks could kill. - Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys, "If Looks Could Kill", Disco 3.

Nothing to do with anything, but I'm listening to it now. Good piece of music. Maybe I should have put on PSB's rather more relevant "The Night I Fell in Love", which not only touches on homosexuality - like the play - but also solidly mocks Eminem - again, like the play. In the form of a wonderful ballad, no less.

Claire Lundberg directed the actors, who have to do most of their emoting on or around the queen-size bed. Draper certainly believes in Cat and her plight, even if others might not; she throws her lean frame into everything she does, and that includes steamy love scenes with Gretchen Egolf as well as steamy lust scenes with James Badge Dale. (Quote continued below.)

Well, she's not calling me. She's happy. Don't mind me, I'll just be over here hitting my one remaining testicle with a hammer.

(Quote continues.) Egolf, blonde and lean, is sexy and appealing as Rose. (Boo-yah, or something.) When the actress also has to play an airhead nurse called Amber -- who, according to the nutty script, looks like Rose -- she's okay. But when she has to don a blonde wig and a Superman outfit, for reasons too complicated to be explained here,

I'm sorry, but that made me think of that line about the kid falling out the window again and had another laughing fit. I'll start the quote over.

(Quote recontinues.) But when she has to don a blonde wig and a Superman outfit, for reasons too complicated to be explained here, she seems to barely tolerate the demand. - David Finkle, review.

It's that Wonder Woman rumor. Ruined everything. I can't get the blonde wig, though. Especially with her hair dyed blonde....

At one point I couldn't help thinking how nice it would be if U.S. Supreme Court judges Thomas, Scalia and Rehnquist, and maybe some right wing pals sharing their dissenting views on gay rights, were compelled to sit and watch the lesbian scenes between Cat and Rose (Gretchen Egolf), her lover who also has heterosexual lapses. Not that minds would be changed. It would just be fun to annoy hell out of them. (Quote continued below.)

Ooooh! Judges in bondage watching lesbians! I'd pay to see that.

(Quote continues.) Draper is a strong actress who knows how to summon intensity when needed whether she is talking or singing. Egolf is good at conveying the conflicted emotions that Rose, the drummer in Cat's rock group, faces. - William Wolf, New York Calling.

No snide comment, I'm working on the script for a revolutionary new porn film called "Judges in Bondage Watching Lesbians" and it's just sucking the creative juices out of me.

Wait for laugh. Bow.

All in all, not bad. Review-wise, the play goes down like the Hindenberg and out of the wreckage walks Gretchen, mostly unscathed. Now all she needs is something to get back into the big time. With the way Broadway seems to like animal things like Cats and The Lion King, I'm thinking it's going to require cat ears. Which would please our 'furry' fans.

(December 29, 2004 AD: A section of text - and really weak joke - has been removed from this section because it served its purpose - to sucker someone in who was vanity searching. Ha!)

August 17, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V20.5)
Some of you still haven't seen the Nicolas trailer, mostly because you refuse to infuse your computers with the dark and pervasive essences of Quicktime. (Can't say I blame you. I didn't until I got a new PC that triple boots - ph33r my l33t installing skillz - between 98, 2K, and XP. XP's my scratch OS, so it has Quicktime.)

But some of you poor mortals have already sold your souls to RealMedia. If so, I have good news... buffering... buffering... buffering.... The trailer is available in Real Media format. (Right side of the page.)


September 16, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.1)
Aww! (Click to zoom.) (Click to zoom.)

First, the ground rules. There's a word I don't want to mention because I don't want it picked up by search engines. It starts with a 'post' and ends with an 'ers'. So, instead of this word, I'm going to use the word 'chickens'. I'm also taking a word composed of 'wall' and also 'paper' and replacing it with 'melon'.

Slow month. The biggest change was in the number of Gretchen Egolf sites. Unfortunately, they're not related to Gretchen at all. Instead, they're generic chicken and melon sites that are either selling the same old Martial Law shot shoved on a chicken or linking to other melon sites that don't have her melons either.

Type "gretchen egolf" (with the quotes) into Google and get almost ten thousand sites. But type "gretchen egolf" -chickens and you're down to 900. It's terrible.

Oh, and the picture is here because I wanted it to be. You know how people get when they see babies. They (Awww!) start making silly noises (Coochie coochie!) and before long (And who's got cute little shooooosies? You! Yes! You!) they collaspe into a gibberish-spouting pile of parental instinct.

But I'm immune to that sort of thing. (Peek-a-boo!)

October 3, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.2)
FAST UPDATE: Playbill announced that Gretchen is playing Emily Shapiro in the east coast (Philadelphia) premiere of Arthur Miller's Resurrection Blues.

Even though there's plenty of info to be had at Playbill's site, you can find out even more at the theater's webpage. Only problem is that I dislike the web design - and why is it all on HTTPS? - so much that I'll give you a rundown:

Running Sept. 17 to Oct. 26, 2003.
It's a comedy-drama. Laugh or I'll cry.
There's a singles night, whose page is crowned with a shot of Gretchen and someone kitted out as a Middle American dictator.
No, I don't get 'Singles Night' at a theatre, either.
There's a cast page.
Removing the "_small" from any of the images on that page gives you access to a large version of same image. 100+K worth of image.
You can count individual hairs on a person's head in a headshot that's over 100K.
Which is an incredibly creepy way to kill an afternoon.
They don't mark their directories as forbidden, either, so you could mirror the whole site if you felt like flexing your cable modem (or you don't want telemarketers calling and you want something for dialup to chew on for a while).
If your PC doesn't like HTTPS for some reason, copy the URL and remove the "S" to make it HTTP://whatever. It works just as well.

October 23, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.3)
With the play not quite closed, the first reviews of Arthur Miller's Resurrection Blues are already in. The parts relevant to us:

But Husted's portrayal of the conscience-stricken Henri is odd and off-putting. Rees makes Stanley into a drippy hippie cliche. And as Emily Shapiro, the director of the crucifixion show and the object of the general's resurrected affections, Gretchen Egolf is willowy but shrill. - Kevin Riordan, The Courier-Post.


' ' - Kathryn Osenlund, CurtainUp.

Okay, so she did mention Gretchen, she just didn't mention anything, er, relevant. The review is an interesting contrast to the previous one. Their opinions on the characters are at times polar opposites.

In a telling quote, heroine Emily (well played by Gretchen Egolf) says, "I'm disgusted with everything in this world but the sun and the moon." -

Okay, so this article's more ad copy than review. But, er, it's also the only good one.

A real head-scratcher: Gretchen Egolf and Patrick Husted try to work out Miller's clumsy script. - Caption from an article by David Anthony Fox.

Uhhh, okay. Seems some people aren't afraid to call the venerable Arthur Miller on his missteps.

Any director would be flummoxed by this material, but it appears Zizka has paid it almost no attention. His actors deliver disengaged, staccato line readings. This is probably meant to suggest Beckett, but actually looks more like cheap sitcom stuff, and it does nothing to help us care about the characters or their problems. - David Anthony Fox (see above).

Well, at least the director took this particular bullet....

More reviews hopefully(?) to follow.

November 18, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.35)
Hello? Hellllllooooo? Anyone home?

Well, er, that was a dull month. Not a single other person mentioned Resurrection Blues, and no new projects have appeared. I find that rather depressing. Oh, well, if history's any indication, I'll find something around the 1st and post it in a hurried update.

And if history's any indication, my prediction will be wrong.... Ah, I love the fluctuations of the market.

December 21, 2003 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.37)
What an exciting winter this is turning out to be! Nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Zero.

But hey, it's Christmas. Who wants to work Christmas? Last year at this time I figured out a way to get out of working Christmas: Surgery. Thing is, life-threatening conditions requiring invasive medical techniques ain't something you want to get too often, so I don't think I'll be able to use that one again. Permanently disfiguring accident seems to be next on the list.

I did set up an ad-free version of this page, so at least you won't be sold stuff while you sit here and read about nothing...!

(And the crowd did rejoice. Sort of.)

January 21, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.38)
The new year has brought.... Miscellany.

This Wilma ad has a tiny picture of Gretchen, though I was greatly amused by the lines "Nearby Accomodations: Doubletree Hotel / Nearby Dining Options: None Recommended". While I'm sure that's meant as in "they didn't recommend any to the site owner", it sounds more like "there's nowhere around here worth recommending". I got a chuckle out of that.

TNT (what a weird URL) is showing the episode of Law and Order that Gretchen was in, "Hitman", on Tuesday, January 27th at 1 PM Eastern. (10 AM Pacific, I think.)

There's an amusing item here that I don't think I've linked to. Look for "egolf" (no quotes, of course).

January 31, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V26.2)
Quick note for French CBC viewers: The Talented Mr. Ripley - or, should I say - L'Enigmatique M. Ripley is on tonight at 7:00 (Eastern time, I think - check your listings). This should be amusing.

February 5, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V26.25)
"This should be amusing." And it was. Besides the fact that they kept the English singer - who sounds even more out of place when all the other lines are dubbed by a French woman - but the name "Dickie Greenleaf" is unexpectedly funny when said by someone French. And while Matt Damon's dubber could say "Dick" without much of an accent, the dubber for James Rebhorn (Dickie Greenleaf's father, who Ripley meets at the very beginning of the film) said it like "Deek".

February 21, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V33.0)
Oh, wow. Sit down. Oh, you probably are. Okay.

Apparently, in a move beyond all wishes or indeed logic, Nicolas is running on some movie channel I've never heard of called HDNet Movies, or something. I think it's a high-def-specific channel, and it's on ten times - starting in a few days - so all of one of you probably gets it. The rest of us will just sit around hating you.

March 23, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V33.1)
There's one more run of Nicolas on HDNet (or HDNet Movies) or something, on March 30th at 7:30 AM Eastern.

For people without HD, and even some people with, if you're looking for some images from Without A Trace episode The Source, check here. Images 157 through 172.

April 11, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V26.3)
TBS will be running everyone's favorite episode of Cosby - "Mud" - at 1 PM Eastern on April 26th. So, if you missed it before, get the VCR warmed up.

May 17, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.4)
Okay, except for the odd date glitch that had the last update listed as a 2002 update....

What's new? Playbill again. Just a one line mention in reference to a new play, but you takes 'em as you gets 'em.

July 4, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.5)
What an exciting month. Sorry for the late update, but first I was sick, then I was at a complete loss for anything to post. I did find one thing, but first, something mirroring my most recent Litany: I'm considering only updating every two months. It's been slow lately, and until Gretchen hits a juicy new role, or even a somewhat moist role, it's kind of bland around these parts....

But here's what I found: In something called, uhh, the Gay City News, was a review of Getting Into Heaven. It was a short review, and Gretchen only got a one-line mention, but to summarize, the reviewer felt the only decent acting was from Polly Draper, Gretchen, and Barbara eda-Young. Everyone else was horrible. The review even singled James Badge Dale out for his performance, mostly on the grounds that there's plenty of people just as sexy who are more talented.


September 1, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V32.6)
For completeness, and for something to write this month, I point out that I just found a Playbill article stating that Gretchen was in an off-Broadway short play in the middle of May, part of the series "New Works: Chance", put on by the Atlantic Theater Company.

Since I don't like Playbill's site, I link to this copy of the announcement.

Still waiting for the big break....

October 25, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V34.0)
I was going to write something about Social Grace, but then something happened.

I noticed an upswing in the number of Tristan Egolf searches I'd been getting, so I went looking for the source. I found that he was arrested for his part in a protest that involved recreating one of the photos from the now-notorious Abu Ghraib. (The protestors are out now, BTW.)

I'll post a link to the news item in a few paragraphs' time. I'll just say this first: Guys in a pile, with only thongs to protect their, erm, bits.

I do find it mildly amusing that Tristan, at 32, is the only person over 22 who was in the pile. I could make many a blistering comment now, but since I'm in agreement with the ACLU on this one, I'll let things pass with only this: At 22, I was acting more like a 32 year old.

Okay, link time. The other side of this link has a picture of six asses, and I ain't talking donkeys. Click if you dare. Of course, if you like the idea of a bunch of thong-wearing twentysomething guys in a pile....

(Oh, and for a for a far more interesting tale of a (semi)protester and his treatment at the hands of the police, read Emmanuel Goldstein's account of the days of the RNC in NYC.)

December 29, 2004 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V34.1)
Not a bad month. I suckered in someone who was vanity searching - thanks for providing your IP addy (MWAHAHAHA!) - and finally excised a coded reference to them from this page. I also found out a bit more about Social Grace. In the Hollywood manner of never making a new idea when an old one can be abused further, it's basically My Big Fat Asian Wedding, with a lower-class Asian marrying into a higher-class Caucasian family. Meaning Gretchen's likely either a minor member of the higher-class family, or one of those bridal-boutique types who cater to the upper classes. Of course, I could be completely wrong.

The cast of the film, incidentally, seems to be mostly Law & Order alumni. Hmmm. Maybe that turn as a murder suspect did her good.:) Though that show burns through suspects like acid through... uh... like acid through... well, pretty much anything, actually.

February 18, 2005 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V34.2)
This whole Social Grace thing is driving me nuts. For a completed 'in the can' film, they're sure taking their sweet time doing anything with it. Ah, well, the machinations of Hollywood, no?

Oh, and the Sci-Fi Channel's currently in the middle of the Skins arc of Roswell, so if you were looking for Gretchen's time as Vanessa Whitaker, er, well, you've missed most of it. Give it a month or so, at 5 episodes a week, they can't be that far from repeating it.

March 1, 2005 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V35.0)
You near Broadway? How about just off Broadway? Good, then listen up as I steal from another site:

Modern Orthodox Welcomes New Stars Crane and Egolf March 8
by Cara Joy David

"On March 8, Modern Orthodox will welcome new cast members J. Anthony Crane and Gretchen Egolf, who are replacing departing original stars Craig Bierko and Molly Ringwald."


"Modern Orthodox centers on Ben, an Upper West Side financial consultant whose plans to marry doctor girlfriend Hannah get shaken up by the arrival of Hershel, a Jewish diamond dealer that sells them an engagement ring."

"The play currently stars Bierko as Ben, Ringwald as Hannah, Jason Biggs as Hershel and Jenn Harris as Rachel."

March 9, 2005 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V35.1)
UPDATE: A week and a day ago I posted a link to something mentioning Gretchen was in Modern Orthodox. Well, uh, so much for that. Just over 500 news items later (507524 vs. 508061), the same site is reporting:

"Scrubs' Sarah Chalke will join the cast of Modern Orthodox in April, according to a representative for the actress. She will replace Gretchen Egolf in the role of Hannah, which was originally played by Molly Ringwald."

Errr, WTF?

May 10, 2005 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V36.0)
(Image taken from

Tristan Egolf Much to my surprise and shock, I found two news articles, quoted below, and this URL in my inbox tonight. To those who loved and were loved by Tristan, I offer my deepest condolences, and I am sure my readers' thoughts and prayers are with them as well.

* * *

Author, activist found dead in city was 'rising star' in literary world
By Bernard Harris
Lancaster New Era

Published: May 09, 2005 1:50 PM EST

LANCASTER COUNTY, PA - Tristan Egolf, a local political activist and author, was found dead inside a city apartment Saturday.

Lancaster City police reportedly are investigating Egolf's death as an apparent suicide, although no officers were available to comment this morning. An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday.

Egolf, 33, who reportedly lived in the 300 block of West Lemon Street, was found inside an apartment in the 400 block of North Charlotte Street.

Egolf was widely known locally as the leader of the Smoketown Six, a group of young men who were arrested in July when they attempted to protest President George W. Bush's campaign stop in East Lampeter Township.

The six men were taken into custody after they stripped to thongs and piled into a pyramid along Route 340 in imitation of an Abu Ghraib prison-abuse photo.

Egolf, the unofficial spokesman of the group, contended the arrests were a violation of their free-speech rights. The incident received nationwide publicity and plenty of local criticism of the protesters, as well as some support.

The men were charged with disorderly conduct, but those charges were eventually dropped. In December, five of the six filed a federal lawsuit alleging their rights had been violated. That case is still pending.

Yet, in the literary world, Egolf was becoming increasingly well known for his writing. The author of five novels, Egolf received literary acclaim for the 2000 publication of his first book, Lord of the Barnyard.

A New York Times book reviewer said the book had "the whiff of real talent," while a London Times reviewer compared Egolf's writing style to that of William Faulkner and John Steinbeck.

At Grove/Atlantic Press in New York this morning, there was an audible gasp from the women in the publicity department when told of Egolf's passing.

Grove/Atlantic published Egolf's first two novels ? Lord of the Barnyard and Skirt and the Fiddle ? and will likely soon publish his latest, Corn Wolf, a novel about a werewolf in Amish country, said Judy Hottensen, the company's vice president of marketing and publicity.

"He was an extremely talented, inventive and adventurous writer. He sold all over the world, especially in France. He was considered a rising star in the literary world," said Hottensen.

According to the publishing house's Internet Web site, Egolf was the subject of an intriguing publishing story. His first novel was reportedly rejected by form letter by more than 70 U.S. publishers when he was discovered playing as a street musician in Paris' arts district to pay his rent.

Hottensen said that in coming years Egolf may be studied in college courses as a promising writer whose life had ended too soon.

"He really established himself in the literary world as young and inventive, incredibly imaginative. His mind was extremely complex and I think his writing was his way of expressing that," she said.

A 1990 Hempfield High School graduate, Egolf was the son of Gary and Paula Egolf of Lancaster. He was the brother of actress Gretchen Egolf.

* * *

City writer, political activist found dead
Autopsy set for Tuesday
By P.j. Reilly
Intelligencer Journal

Published: May 09, 2005 9:40 AM EST

LANCASTER COUNTY, PA - A Lancaster political activist and author was found dead in a city apartment early Saturday morning.

Tristan Egolf, 33, of the 300 block of West Lemon Street, was found dead inside an apartment in the 400 block of North Charlotte Street.

Sources said Egolf committed suicide with a shotgun.

City police would not comment on the incident Sunday. An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday.

Egolf was an activist for many causes in Lancaster County.

He was a member of, and unofficial spokesman for, the Smoketown Six, a group of six men who staged a protest during President Bush's July 9, 2004, campaign visit to Smoketown.

Minutes before Bush's tour bus reached its destination at a Smoketown business, seven men, including Egolf, stripped to thong underwear and piled on top of each other in an attempt to re-create one of the photographs from the Abu Ghraib prison scandal in Iraq.

The men were arrested for disorderly conduct and detained until after the president left the area. One of the men escaped from police, and the remainder became known as the Smoketown Six.

Five of the men, including Egolf, filed a federal civil rights lawsuit accusing East Lampeter Township police, Pennsylvania State Police and U.S. Secret Service agents of violating the men's right to free speech. The suit has not yet been settled.

A 1990 graduate of Hempfield High School, Egolf wrote three novels, "Lord of the Barnyard," "Skirt & the Fiddle" and "Kornwolf."

He was the son of Gary and artist Paula Egolf of Lancaster and the brother of actress Gretchen Egolf.

According to newspaper records, Egolf also is survived by a 2-year-old daughter.

July 12, 2005 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.7)
I'll be frank: It's hard to bounce back with more fanboy fluff after that last post. It's also hard to even update, as my personal life ain't exactly a rose bed at the moment. So I suspect I'll be even more taciturn in the following months. Until then, I offer this:

It was 4 AM and I was awake while my digestive tract was engaged in an epic struggle with the semidigested food that I suspected would be attempting an escape. For my part, I was watching television. My choices included:

Classic Arts Showcase. Yeah, I was watching this. What can I say, I'm a Bach junkie.

Ten minutes of Scooby Doo, in Spanish but with the closed captioning still in English. It's like watching a foreign film, only much cheaper. Much, much cheaper.

Ten minutes of Futurama. I felt like Estragon and Vladimir in "Waiting for Godot". I was waiting for the funny, I was expecting the funny, I was thinking about what would happen when the funny arrived, but the funny never came.

And Quiz Show, which I turned on just in time to see Gretchen vanish from the screen. Just caught an orangy blur I realized was her dress and then poof, gone. Impeccable timing, that.

However, I also learned a bit later that Gleason will be on CBS this Sunday (the 17th) around 10 PM. Check your affiliate and set those VCRs. (Good film, I enjoyed it. Your mileage may vary.)

October 10, 2005 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.8)
And again, little newsworthy happened of late. About the only thing I've seen is an older article pointing out that, despite trading Gretchen (and, I think, one of her costars) for actors from popular television properties, Modern Orthodox closed a month later.

Just a thought: If the show is starting to limp along, stunt casting probably won't help. (Insert cheap Martial Law joke here.)

So.... See you in a few months, when hopefully something new and wonderful happens. We'll be taking bets on such an occurence at the third window.

October 21, 2005 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V25.85)
See you in a few months, when hopefully something new and wonderful happens.

Okay, so it's not terribly 'new and wonderful' but the 'Hitman' episode of Law & Order was on a few nights back and I recorded part of it on my new and wonderful DVD recorder, which I then sneakernetted to my PC and hit with my new and wonderful VirtualDubMPEG until I had screenshots and a video file.

So.... Barring life being evil, I'll leave them up until late 2006. Here ya go. Some random screenies, including the one where Jerry Orbach cuffs Gretchen over the tennis wrist guard thingy she's wearing (that just looks silly to me). Plus one of Jerry by himself, because I was listening to his rendition of Mack the Knife last week and it makes me wistful.

The MPG file is pretty generic in encoding. Works well on my 98 box, which is a touch creaky with those things. It's what I call the 'How to make yourself look guilty as sin.' scene. Understand, she's playing a character who found out earlier that day (earlier that hour, perhaps) that her home was burgled and her husband killed. And she's already got the claim forms ready to go.

So, a few months from now okay? See you then. Unless something like this pops up again....

June 14, 2006 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, VX.0)
Well, so much for that. It's been a hell of a year for me, and it doesn't look like it's letting up any time soon. As you can see, I've pretty much stopped updating this page. (Hasn't been much to update about, though....)

So, while not a complete closing, it looks like this is about the end of regular updates for this page. If something comes up, I'll certainly update, but there's no sense in me making every-three-months promises that I know I'll never be able to keep.

Best wishes to my readers and fans of all things Martial Law-related. Take care of yourselves.

June 28, 2006 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V37.0)
So I write the closing-down thing mentioned above, and fate - a mere fortnight later - decides to send me this. I should close down more often.

Veronica Mars cast member Krysten Ritter will appear in Rajiv Joseph's All This Intimacy as part of the Second Stage Theatre Uptown series at the McGinn/Cazale Theatre. Thomas Sadoski, Gretchen Egolf, Adam Green, Amy Landecker and Kate Nowlin also star.

In All This Intimacy, Ty (Sadoski) is a lusty 30-year-old poet who finds himself embroiled in several simultaneous relationships. There's his sweet girlfriend Jen (Egolf), his God-fearing 40-year-old neighbor Maureen (Landecker) and Becca (Ritter), his 18-year-old student. They all have news for him that is sure to change his life.


Egolf has appeared on Broadway in Jackie (also West End) and Ring Round the Moon. Her other New York credits include Modern Orthodox, More Lies About Jerzy, Getting Into Heaven and Crocodiles in the Potomac. She was one of the stars of the CBS series Martial Law.

Nominally more info available here, here, and here.

Since it opened yesterday, reviews may be forthcoming in the next month.

Update: Okay, don't know if I read it wrong or if I read something that was wrong, but the opening is apparently July 27th, not June 27th, so it's still a month off. Unless you're reading this on July 28th, of course.

August 2, 2006 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V37.1)
Allright fanboys (and girls...?), gather around for the official unofficial review roundup. Same ground rules as before: I don't write about the play unless I so choose. It's all about Gretchen right now. Quotes copyright by their respective creators (and/or the creators' lords and masters), snarky replies copyright me.

First off: Picture! Picture! Thomas Sadoski with, from left, Amy Landecker, Gretchen Egolf and Krysten Ritter. Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company, all rights reserved and otherwise pwned.

The plot of All This Intimacy: 30ish poet Ty has managed to impregnate three women. Some hijinks and absolutely no nuclear holocausts ensue. For further backstory and cheap sniggering, I quote some reviewers.

Indeed, this story angle plays out crisply, with flashback scenes of Ty romping with girlfriend Jen (Gretchen Egolf), his 40-year-old neighbor Maureen (Amy Landecker) and his 18-year-old student Becca (Krysten Ritter), enthusiastic partners all. - Marilyn Stasio,

Eventually, we learn that Ty has impregnated all three women. One of them is his married neighbor, Maureen (an earthy and appealing Amy Landecker), who had thought she was unable to conceive. Another is his 18-year-old student Becca (an amusingly brittle Krysten Ritter), who has ended up pregnant despite being on the pill. The third woman carrying Ty's baby -- because the condom broke -- is his longtime girlfriend Jenn (Gretchen Egolf in a sweet, smart, vulnerable performance). - Barbara & Scott Siegel,

Jen may or may not be spelled "Jenn". (So is "What's the sound of one N clapping?" a Zenn koann?)

He doesn't even convey any particular affection for any of the three women: Though he repeatedly declares that he "loves" his girlfriend, there's little dramatic evidence of any concern to back up the statement. His sexual connections seem to be a purely mechanical matter of proximity, convenience, and organ grinding. The women themselves are oversimplified figures of no particular interest, despite the efforts of four excellent actresses: Gretchen Egolf, Amy Landecker, Kate Nowlin, and Krysten Ritter. - Michael Feingold, the Village Voice.

In case you're curious, a full half of the reviews I've seen comment on the semirandom switching from sitcom to serious. Another common thread is the idea that the end is just wrong. Judging from the bile (pardon, 'critques'), I suspect a lighter, more satirical end similar in style to The Threepenny Opera might be more appreciated. And in case you didn't know, the end of The Threepenny Opera involves a hanging.

Of course, some people are just the opposite, they want the light stuff jettisoned and it all to be dark. So there you go, All This Intimacy is half of a good play and half of a bad play. But the critics, of course, can't decide which half is the good half.

And here's one that has nothing to do with anything: He certainly wastes no time introducing his plot. As the lights come up on David Newell's sperm-covered set (long tails wriggle across every paintable surface),it's obvious that someone has been shaking his bacon where it doesn't belong. - Helen Shaw, The New York Sun.

I include this only because "sperm-covered set" isn't a phrase I honestly expected to see used to refer to a legitimate production based outside the San Fernando Valley. However, the quote above is not the only review that uses a similar turn of phrase. The more polite - or censored - or clueless - ones call them "snakes". But sperm they are, as seen above and here. Of course, I didn't notice at first. My interest in this particular photo starts with Amy Landecker's legs and ends with the rest of her. But that's because I'm a complete bastard.

October 26, 2006 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V37.2)
(Pours drink.)

(Wonders if he remembered to upload that August update.)

(Remembers that he doesn't drink.)

(Throws drink out.)

Yes, well. Playbill comes through again. Take it away, reporter Kenneth Jones:

The play by Mark Hampton and Michael Sharp is based on the book "The Secret Letters of Marilyn Monroe and Jacqueline Kennedy" by Wendy Leigh.

Guess which person Gretchen's playing, I dares ya. Hint: If you believe some reviewers, she should've been the one playing it in another play, almost ten years ago. Mr. Jones, if you please....

Stage and television actress Gretchen Egolf will play Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy.

The play opens on November 9th (unofficially - the official opening's a week later), by the way. More info can be found at the short-URLed

January February 11, 2007 AD (The Egolf Chronicles, V37.3)
Obvious 'haven't updated since last year' jokes aside, it has been a while. (Holidays, house selling, moving.) But that gave ample time for the "The Secret Letters of Jackie and Marilyn" reviews to roll in. (Is it wrong that, these days, whenever I think of Jackie Kennedy I invariably think of Dr. Girlfriend from The Venture Bros.?)

Well, no matter. Without further ado or chainsaw juggling:

Gretchen Egolf as Jackie and Heather Tom as Marilyn meet the challenge of their famous characters with grace and aplomb. I don't know which impresses me more, the patrician restraint through which Egolf lets us see Jackie's own growing needs and shrewd calculations, or the dewy yearning through which Tom reveals Marilyn's mix of strength and weakness. - Christopher Rawson,

But if such a thing is to be, I don't think you'd find two better women to do it than Gretchen Egolf and Heather Tom. On Michael McGarty's drop-dead set, and wrapped in David C. Woolard's historically iconic costumes, Tom's Marilyn is a heart-breaking blend of damaged child and reckless woman ... plus, as a bonus, she's got Monroe's voice down cold. Egolf plays Jackie with a perfect patrician beauty and a frosty manner which she lets drop to reveal a frighteningly intelligent and almost numbed victim underneath. - Ted Hoover, Pittsburgh City Paper

And no, 'patrician' doesn't mean you're related to someone named Patricia.

All things considered, the cast does well at the Public. Egolf unifies steeliness and anxiety in her performance as Jackie, just as Tom copies Marilyn's gestures and voice without becoming a caricature. - Doug Shanaberger, the Observer-Reporter

Oh, and the play might be over, but the site is still up: If you're the quiz-taking sort, you may enjoy the quiz there. If you're not, well - Hey! - a new headshot is there!

(See also two patrician pics here and here.

Image links....

    First rule of photography... never crop so as to remove part of a person's head. (Martial Law episode "Heartless", 1999/2000ish)
    Matt Damon gets pushed to the back of the line. (The Talented Mr. Ripley, 1998/1999ish)
    Only way to get some people into a dress is to have 'em act like someone else.... (Martial Law episode "My Man Sammo", 1999/2000ish)
    Teasing the fanboys. I am evil. (Martial Law episode "Final Conflict, Part 1", 1999/2000ish)
    Oh, you are such a wannabe, Dorn. I play an alien, I get to push people around with telekinesis and don't even have to change out of my heels to do it. You play an alien, you wear a prune danish on your head and get slapped around by the Borg. Bah. (Martial Law episode "No Quarter", 1999/2000ish)
    Okay, Behr, explain this one to me: We're almost the same age, in our late 20s. So why am I playing a 36-year-old fossil while you're playing a lovelorn teenager? And why's your "soulmate" over there an actress who was in diapers two decades ago? Can't explain it? I didn't think so. Careful starting your car tonight, you bastard. (Roswell episode "Skin and Bones", 2000ish)
    He's not Eminem, he just plays an M&M on stage. And he'd better get his hand off her hip or someone's gonna lose fingers. (Heaven Can Wait Opening Night, July 2ndish, 2003)
    Doesn't anyone use LANDLINES anymore? (Heaven Can Wait, Juneish, 2003)
Season One, Part One | Season One, Part Two | Midseries Metamorphosis | Season Two, Part One | Season Two, Part Two
The Index | The Annotated Index | The Progenitor Rant | The Original Page
Chronicles, Litanies, and Fanboy Obsessions: (Recent Updates)
The Egolf Chronicles: Current | May 2001 - February 2002 | February 2002 - July 2002
Image Magic | New Image Magic | ImaG.E. Listings
Len's Lack-of-Sleep Litanies | The (Previous) Litanies

Run along home.

This site and everything on it are Copyright (C) The Archon 1999 - 2007, unless otherwise noted. So there.
Oh, and if you use this stuff without my permission (except for the stuff I've taken from others without their permission...), I'll hurt you.
You're visitor number:
Current URL:
Main URL:
Tripod URL:
Backup URLs: