Super Mates 103: House of Franklin-Stein Part 3

Attaboy Luther!!! Ghosts haunt the House of Franklin-Stein! Chris and Cindy discuss the 1966 spooky comedy The Ghost and Mr. Chicken starring Don Knotts as a would-be reporter who encounters ghostly organ players, bleeding portraits and hilarious mayhem in an old abandoned mansion!

Then the Gentleman Ghost returns from the grave to seek revenge on Superman and Wonder Woman in the All-New Super Friends Hour episode, “The Ghost”!

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Clip credits:

The Ghost and Mr. Chicken (1966) directed by Alan Rafkin, music by Vic Mizzy

Clips from The All-New Super Friends Hour, “The Ghost”, directed by Charles A. Nichols, music by Hoyt Curtain

“The House of Franklinstein” by Terry O’Malley, of Stop Calling Me Frank

23 responses to “Super Mates 103: House of Franklin-Stein Part 3

  1. “Juanita“. Don Knotts movies were a weekend staple on my local TV stations growing up, and The Ghost and Mr Chicken was my favorite. Followed by The Reluctant Astronaut. (As it often was in a Don Knotts double feature. I think they both gave a skinny, geeky kid hope that maybe he could explore a haunted house and possibly be an astronaut. Recently I discovered a DVD of Private Eyes starring Knotts and Tim Conway. A movie my brother and I watched every time it was on HBO. (Which was a lot!) The movie was as much fun as we remembered, even if we did wince a time or two at dome of the humor. The DVD had a surprisingly great picture and audio as well as a commentary featuring Conway. For those of you who also have fond memories of this haunted mansion/murder mystery parody I highly recommend seeking it out. It’s published by Henstooth Video.
    The Gentleman Ghost episode is indeed one of my favorites episodes of Super Friends, as is the one where they encounter Frankenstein. Probably because they’re very much in line with my beloved Scooby-Doo.
    I’m in absolute agreement that The Super Friends actually begins in the second season. I have every season on DVD except for the first! I prefer the Wonder Twins, but I don’t mind Wendy and Marvin so much. They were ok characters, they were just unfortunately stuck in those sappy saccharine sweet episodes.
    Thanks again for entertaining me with another fine episode. I certainly hope you have Edward Van Sloan come out to warn us about the possible terrors we will encounter in next weeks show.

    1. I remember seeing The Private Eyes as a kid, but haven’t seen it in about 40 years. I looked for it on a streaming service, and I couldn’t find it anywhere. I will have to track down the DVD.

      I forgot to mention Don Knotts was on The New Scooby-Doo Movies…twice!

      Funny you should mention Van Sloan…we just got that warning today!

  2. Hey Franklins!

    Still have to finish the episode, but wanted to chime in re: the “holler fish” thing, Hawkeye uses it in a 3rd season episode of MASH written by…you guessed it, Fritzell & Greenbaum!

    Here’s something I found about its origins:

    “The phrase was apparently first introduced on television in the 1963 episode of The Andy Griffith Show. It was put in the “Citizens Arrest” script by show writer Everette Greenbaum.

    The book “Mayberry 101” gives Greenbaum’s explanation: “‘You just go up an alley and holler fish’ was one of my mother’s sayings. It meant ‘hush up’ and came from the vendors who sold food in the alleys of her Philadelphia childhood.”

    Perhaps that means if the fish vendors were in the alley rather than the street, their calls wouldn’t be as loud. Hmmm.

    Any-hoo, it’s definitely not a southern phrase.”

    1. A food vendor isn’t likely to make many sales in an alley, and fiah from a cart isn’t very appetizing. Maybe it means, “Go away and waste your time”? “May you be far from me and experiencing poor sales”? Anyway, it’s an inherently funny retort, mostly because it’s so obscure.

  3. I really enjoyed this deep dive into “The Ghost & Mr. Chicken.” I hope you Franklins do someday consider starting an Andy Griffith Show podcast, as I think it’s one of the best situation comedies of all-time. I was lucky enough to become friends with the late Jeffrey Hayden, who directed a number of the Griffith episodes. He considered it one of the highlights of his career to work on that series. He had known Andy in college and was married to actress Eva Marie Saint for 65 years prior to his death. I would highly recommend you checking out the Archive of American Television as it has many video interviews with the cast and crew of the Andy Griffith Show. In fact, Andy’s interview is fascinating as he reveals himself to be much more sophisticated than his rural image. In his interview, he mentions that Don Knotts approached him to help rewrite the Mr. Chicken script.

    1. Thanks for the link, Chuck! And, not to cause a split that would destroy the network, everytime Rob says M*A*S*H is the greatest TV series of all time, I think to myself “Well, it’s certainly up there, but what about The Andy Griffith Show?” Greatest sticom of all time? Probably. Certainly the one with the most longevity. I think it’s suprassed I Love Lucy in that regard.

      1. Personally, I put All in the Family as TV’s top sitcom l followed closely by The Mary Tyler Moore Show. MASH & TAGS are definitely in the top ranks!

        1. They definitely deserve to be in the consideration, and you’re the Pop Culture Professor.

          Just as far as popular longevity, Andy and MASH definitely have more cultural cache today, still airing multiple times per day in many markets, by MeTV and other means.

  4. I don’t see what’s so puzzling about where the Legion of Doom headquarters is located. As Mr. Springsteen noted, it’s “…stuck in the mud somewhere in the swamps of Jersey.”

    1. So, you’re saying the Hall of Doom was located in the 100 mile swamp around Metropolis all that time, and the Super Friends never knew it? No wonder they let the Earth get destoryed in the final episode of Challenge!

  5. Thanks for another splendid show, I’ve not had time to comment on the others but, as ever, they’re a highlight of my listening year.

    Well, I don’t know Don Knotts, as the Andy Griffith show never played over here in my lifetime, but I surely saw him in Move Over Darling and It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World. In my mind he’s also Don Rickles from Jimmy Olsen, who I also don’t know. Still, the film sounds a hoot, so complex in its plotting. I like the idea that there was a whole community of actors who specialised in playing members of communities. And yeah, that ‘garden shears in the throat’ bit sounds very off.

    Typesetting by tweezers was still how it was done when I was a young reporter in the early Eighties and let me tell you, printers were a lot scarier than ANY ghost.

    As you may recall, I’ve never seen a Super Friends but this sounds a fun episode (‘Holy Goolies’?). Cindy knows a scary amount about kidnapping.

    Cindy is Scottish?

    1. Wha?!? No Andy Griffith Show? No Super Friends? No amount of Doctor Who and Cornonation Street can make up for that!

      I’m surprised Andy didn’t play across the pond, since I know The Dukes of Hazzard did (per our friend Andy Leyland’s fandom of it). Despite it’s homespun characters, The Andy Griffith Show is way less…southern USA than the Dukes.

      And you had to typeset the ol’ fashioned way too? How can you be such a chipper fellow, Martin?

      Cindy knows lots of scary things. Even I’m frightened sometimes! And her father’s family orginally hailed from Scotland.

  6. I’ll say this for Mr. Chicken, they’re my go-to fast-food destination when I’m in the Cleveland metropolitan area. Their establishments are nice and sanitary. You reckon they use a certain brand of cleanser product that we might have heard about?

    Batman and Robin, I love you guys; Aquaman, I love you; but you all are lookin’ at a world of hurt if you ever have to tussle with the two powerhouse champs of the team… (watches Gentleman Jim turn those two into Spooker Friends) ZOMG the greatest battle of all time is about to break out! !! (sees the Spooker Friends get easily turned back to normal) …Oh.
    In fairness, that missed opportunity aside, this was terrific Super Friends adventuring. Creepy and zany and swampy and de-codery. (I still insist the code word was “Orren Apparition”. Is that anything? No, I just like the sound of it.)

    1. Holy cow, there is a Mr. Chicken restaurant chain! I had no idea! I hope it’s mostly self service, because I can’t imagine having your food delivered by the shakiest waiters in the east!

      FW Network All-Star Max Romero is convinced the decoder phrase solution was “Human Fly Poltergeist”…whatever THAT means!

  7. Very fun listening! On that Superman/Green Lantern segment you mentioned, I too had noticed how Green Lantern for some reason uses his ring to create a Bat-jet rather than fly on his own. I noticed he did the same thing earlier that season when he teamed up with Aquaman. It seems like the writers of those segments didn’t know the full extent of Green Lantern’s powers. But the next season in Challenge of the Superfriends, Green Lantern of course flies all the time, including in space where he often transports the other heroes inside the protection of his power ring, and he is properly regarded as one of the most powerful Superfriends along with Superman and Wonder Woman. I always wished he had been used more throughout the whole series because this version of Green Lantern had such a cool voice, etc.!

    By the way, your Don Knotts voice sounds like the real thing! I always enjoyed the Andy Griffith Show reruns growing up, especially the first five years with Barney!

    1. Thanks Mike! According to Cindy I didn’t quite hit the Knotts voice as well as I have sometimes just casually playing about around the house.

      Speaking of voice acting, YES, I love Michael Rye’s Green Lantern! So confident and authoratative. And a bit cocky! Perfect for Hal! I definitely think the Challenge writers got a better handle on GL. We even see him as Hal Jordan a couple of times. We never saw Bruce Wayne on SF, before the Super Powers episode, “The Fear”.

      Michael Rye did a lot of voice over work in movie trailers, including some horror ones! You can hear him in the original trailer for Creature From The Black Lagoon!

  8. Another gem from the Franklin-steins! Or is it the Franklin-stein’s Monsters? I just know someone is going to push up their glasses and correct me……

    While I haven’t seen (but was familiar with) the Ghost and Mr.Chicken, I’ve always known Don Knotts as Mr.Furley on Three’s Company or as a member of the Apple Dumpling gang. I don’t think I’ve seen anything with Don Knotts in it that I DIDN’T like, so I guess I have to check out the Ghost and Mr.Chicken now! Which I always thought was a Disney movie, but that’s just me thinking all his movies were Disney movies. Looking at Knotts’ IMDb, I forget how many non-Disney movies AND TV shows he was in!

    “Don Knotts trying to flirt is like you trying to flirt.” That’s quite the compliment! But I didn’t tune in for all these compliments and kisses! Where’s the punching?! Hmmm, maybe this is saying something more about me than about you two…….

    Well done, everyone! I’m looking forward to the next episode where the House reviews its namesake! Keep up the great work!

    1. Cindy was definitely in a better mood with me in the last episode!

      Knotts was quite prolific, but during the 70s, was definitely one of the go-to stars of Disney’s live-action comedies. And apparently, Knotts was pretty smooth with the ladies, so being compared to him is a pretty big compliment!

      We’ve got Kenneth Strickfaden’s electrical equipment all fired up for our final episode, in just a few days!


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