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Full details for the direct-to-video Specials! 

The Jukebox Puppet Band:

A Day in the Life

Quality Family Entertainment 1993
Written by Sean Kelly
Directed by Steven Feldman and Craig Marin
Summary by J. Gratton

Starring the Flexitoons by Craig & Olga Marin:

  • Didi (Olga Marin)

  • Tex (Alan Semok)

  • Rex (Craig Marin)

  • Grace (Peter Baird & Ken Miele)

  • Tito Swing (Jonathan Freeman)

  •  J.J. Silvers (Craig Marin)

  • Narrator (George Page)

 

Episode Synopsis: Narrator George Page guides us documentary-style through a typical day in the life of the little people who live in jukeboxes. This direct-to-video special features the Jukebox Puppet Band, their manager J.J. Silvers and interspersed with song performances.

Featured Jukebox Puppet Band Songs:

  • Jesse James, audio from “Word’s Out” (Season 1)

  • Michael Row the Boat Ashore, from “Dan's Big Race” (Season 3)

  • Take Me Out to the Ball Game, from “Field Day,” (Season 2)

  • Chattanooga Choo-Choo, from “Is Anybody There? (Season 2)

  • Freight Train Blues, from “Billy's Runaway Train” (Season 3)

  • The Cannonball Blues, from “Stacy Says No” (Season 3)

  • Celito Lindo, from “Becky Makes a Wish” (Season 3)

  • Polly Wolly Doodle, from “Schemer Alone” (Season 3)

  • Polly Wolly Doodle, (original karaoke version)

  • Sweet Betsy from Pike, from “Wrong Track” (Season 2)

  • Jamaican Farewell, from “Bully for Mr. Conductor” (Season 3)

  • Patriotic Medley: Yankee Doodle, Dixie, I’m a Yankee Doodle Dandy, America the Beautiful, from “Mr. Conductor's Fourth of July” (Season 3)

  • Midnight Special, from “Scare Dares” (Season 2)

 

Episode Notes:

  • The video opens with the full Shining Time Station theme, but only the main title is used before shifting to scenes from inside the jukebox.

  • Narrator George Page is noted for his work on National Geographic wildlife documentary specials from the 1970s and 1980s. He uses the same narrative style in this special.

  • The band's performance of "Jesse James" in this video is different than the one originally seen in “Word's Out,” even though the soundtrack from that episode is used. In this version, instead of performing on stage, the band plays the song on a makeshift locomotive travelling the rails.

The Jukebox Puppet Band:

Lullaby

Quality Family Entertainment 1993 / Kid Vision 1994
Written by Sean Kelly
Directed by Steven Feldman and Craig Marin
Summary by J. Gratton

Starring the Flexitoons by Craig & Olga Marin:

  • Didi (Olga Marin)

  • Tex (Alan Semok)

  • Rex (Craig Marin)

  • Grace (Peter Baird & Ken Miele, vocals by Vanesse Thomas)

  • Tito Swing (Jonathan Freeman)

  •  J.J. Silvers (Craig Marin)

  • The Sandman (Olga Marin)

 

Episode Synopsis: It may be quiet in the station, but not so inside the Jukebox. After counting the day’s take, manager J.J. Silvers sends everyone to bed for a good night’s sleep. Much to J.J. Silver’s dismay, all of the band members succumb to insomnia one by one, with solace only being provided by old music videos of the band performing lullabies. The relief is temporary with a desperate J.J. bringing in expert help from the outside!

Featured Jukebox Puppet Band Songs:

  • Union Train, from “Just Wild about Harry’s Workshop” (Season 1)

  • Cowboy Medley: Cowboy’s Dream, My Home’s in Montana, from “How the Station Got its Name” (Season 3)

  • Home on the Range

  • Chattanooga Choo-Choo, from “Is Anybody There? (Season 2)

  • Railroad Corral, from “Pitching In and Helping Out” (Season 1)

  • Beautiful Dreamer

  • The Railroad Cars are Coming, from “All’s Fair” (Season 2)

  • Red River Valley from “Mapping it Out” (Season 1)

  • The Train is a-Comin’, from Ring in the Old (Season 1)

  • Riddle Song, from “Do I Hear?” (Season 2)

  • Clementine, from “Things that go Ga-Hooga in the Night” (Season 1)

  • Cumberland Gap, from “Washout” (Season 2)

  • I Dream of Jeannie, from “He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not” (Season 2)

  • Lullaby Medley: All Through the Night, All the Pretty Horses, and Golden Slumbers, from “Stacy Forgets Her Name” (Season 3)

 

Episode Notes:

  • Identical to the concurrently released video "A Day in the Life," this special opens with the Shining Time Station theme and main title before shifting to scenes from inside the jukebox.

  • The band members saying good night to one another from their beds is reminiscent of the closing scenes of “The Waltons,” a popular television show from the 1970s.

  • J.J. Silvers and the Boy Brothers have a running gag in the special when J.J. mistakenly addresses the brothers by their incorrect names, which they are quick to correct, much to J.J.’s annoyance.

  • The performance of “Home on the Range” is different than the groovy version performed by the band in the Season 2 episode “A Dog’s Life.” This version is sung in the traditional fashion by the Boy Brothers.

  • Though the vocals of “Beautiful Dreamer” are from the Season 3 episode “Mr. Conductor’s Big Sleepwalk,” new video sequences were taped for the special.

  • New video was mixed in to show the Sandman at work during the music video performance of “I Dream of Jeannie”, originally heard in the Season 2 episode “He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not.”

  • Only part of the Lullaby Medley video from “Stacy Forgets Her Name” was used for this segment of the special. New video of the band singing the medley to J.J. Silvers was taped and inserted at the beginning of the song.

  • The Lullaby Medley segment of “Golden Slumbers” is a song written by John Lennon, Paul McCartney and James Paul for the Beatles, an ironic coincidence given Ringo Starr’s association with the Shining Time Station.

Schemer Presents:

The World According to Me!

Quality Family Entertainment 1993 (VHS 1994)
Written by Ellis Weiner
Directed by John Ferraro
Summary by J. Gratton

Description: This direct-to-video release features Schemer attempting to teach the viewer lessons on how to get certain things done from his eclectically decorated bedroom (more like a small apartment with a separate entrance attached to the main house). Schemer's abode is cluttered with vintage items such as lava-lamps, a statue of a conquistador, a Beethoven bust and various toys. Schemer's lessons are taught with the help of special guests, though the one who benefits the most from these lessons is the teacher himself!

It's interesting to note that these featurettes were most likely taped in 1993 after an episode wrap. 

From the video's introduction: And now… Schemer Presents! A series of really worthwhile-buying, can't miss, inspirational video lessons that sometimes teaches stuff. Produced by Schemer, written by Schemer, directed by Schemer and starring Schemer as himself. Taped on location, in his very own room. And now, let's join me!

Schemer Presents: Lesson 1

How to use a Telephone

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Kara (Erica Luttrell)

Synopsis: 

Schemer is tasked to make a sign for Stacy, but his first attempt ends in disaster. Kara drops in to demonstrate how to tackle any project properly.

Schemer Presents: Lesson 2

How to Have Style à la Schemer:

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Schemee (Jonathan Shapiro)

  • Skip (William Colgate)

Synopsis: 

Skip the carpenter visits Schemer to repair the malfunctioning Murphy bed. As Schemer promotes “how to have style à la Schemer,” Skip ends up teaching him about personal style and the benefits of being unique.

Schemer Presents: Lesson 3

How to use a Telephone

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Dan Jones (Ari Magder)

Synopsis: 

Schemer attempts to teach the viewer the finer points of telephone etiquette, but Dan appears to know a little more than he does!

Schemer Presents: Lesson 4

How to Share

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Buster (Ira Glasner)

  • Schemee (Jonathan Shapiro)

Synopsis: 

Schemer tries his best to teach about how to share using Buster and nephew Schemee. The ensuing chaos results in a very unorthodox but creative demonstration of the concept!

Schemer Presents: Lesson 5

How to be Smart

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Ms. Smith (Myra Fried)

Synopsis: 

In this lesson, Schemer spends more time trying to show the audience how to fool people into thinking that you are smart. A visit from Ms. Smith, an encyclopedia salesperson, proves to him that this will never work!

Schemer Presents: Lesson 6

How to Tie Your Shoes

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Becky (Danielle Marcot)

Synopsis:

Schemer once again tries to deviate from the lesson’s subject by promoting progress. After a chaotic demonstration, Becky discovers his secret and helps him overcome it for a successfull lesson conclusion.

Notes:

  • In "How to Get Things Done", When Schemer is speaking to his mother on the phone, the voice that is heard is actually sped-up audio from a scene with Stacy and Harry from Promises, Promises (see Season 1: Promises, Promises Episode Notes).

  • Schemer's fold-up bed is known as a "Murphy Bed", invented by William Murphy for small living spaces and one-room apartments. During the day, the bed can be folded-up into the wall, and lowered at night for sleeping.

  • The pay telephone on the wall is the same prop featured in Season 3 of the series. The gumball machine in the room is also a borrowed prop from the series. 

  • The plate with Schemer's face hanging above the pay telephone is the same one seen at the beginning of Season 3's Schemer's Robot

  • The dollar sign broach in the "How to be Smart" segment is the same one worn by Schemer in Season 3's Schemer's Special Club.

  • The framed collection of combs seen on the wall confirms Schemer's hobby mentioned in Season 2's Crackpot.

  • In "How to Have Style à la Schemer", William Colgate (Skip) also appeared as a mover in the Season 3 episode The Joke's on Schemer. By coincidence, Myra Fried (Ms. Smith) also appeared in the same episode as a passenger.

  • Goof: Schemer calls Skip by his name despite Skip only introducing himself as ‘a carpenter.’

  • Each segment was originally included as bonus material on VHS releases of regular Shining Time Station episodes.

    • How to Have Style à la Schemer was featured on the VHS home Video of Schemer Alone (Classic Volume 2).​

  • The Lime Time Slime prop seen in Lesson 4 looks like a modified jar of Skippy Peanut Butter whereas Coritos is reminiscent of Doritos snack food.(contributed by Daniel Celano)

Lime Time Slime (left) and Coritos (right)

Additional Featured

Schemer Presents Lessons

Quality Family Entertainment 1993
Written by Ellis Weiner
Directed by John Ferraro
Summary by J. Gratton

In addition to The World According to Me!, individual Schemer Presents segments were featured separately as bonus material on VHS releases of individual Shining Time Station episodes. All of these segments were taped in 1993, were written by Ellis Weiner and directed by John Ferraro.

Schemer Presents:

How to Clean up your Room / How to Make Your Bed

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Becky (Danielle Marcot)

 

Synopsis:

Schemer demonstrates how to clean up your room, leaving his friend Becky impressed at the cleanliness, but suspicious of where Schemer may have stashed away all of his clutter. When the truth is revealed, the exercise turns into a lesson on how to make your bed.

Schemer Presents:

How to Apologize

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Jane the Professional Actress (Jayne Eastwood)

 

Synopsis:

Schemer writes a play about teaching the audience how to apologize. It backfires when the professional actress he’s asked to help him turns his make-believe script into a real-life situation.

Notes:

  • Jayne Eastwood also played Helga Boonswaddle in the Season 3 episode Bad Luck Day at Shining Time Station.

Schemer Presents:

How to Have Good Table Manners

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Schemee (Jonathan Shapiro)

  • Ed Hooyen the Painter (Michael Polley)

 

Synopsis:

Schemer’s attempts to teach everyone what he believes are good table manners are foiled by Ed Hooyen the painter, who drops in as he and Schemee are trying to enjoy a spaghetti dinner.

Notes:

  • Michael Polley also played Rusty McRail in the Season 3 episode Stacy Cleans Up.

  • This segment was featured at the end of the VHS episode version of "Billy's Party" (Classic Volume 6).

Schemer Presents:

The Meaning of Time

 

Characters and Stars:

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Kara (Erica Luttrell)

 

Synopsis:

Schemer is supposed to deliver a freshly-baked loaf of bread to the station to put on the next train to Dillylick for one of Stacy's friends. Intending to demonstrate the meaning of time, the lesson's aromatic prop becomes too tempting for Schemer's gluttony and he begins to eat it. The train has departed without the loaf of bread aboard, leaving Kara to intervene to explain the importance of planning ahead and making a schedule.

Notes:

  • The picture of Schemer on the dresser is the same one used in the Season 3 episode Schemer’s Alone.

  • Stacy's telephone voice where she is speaking to Schemer is actually sped-up audio from a scene with Stacy and Harry from Promises, Promises (see Season 1: Promises, Promises Episode Notes).

  • Kara and Schemer (except for his tie) are wearing the same clothes seen in the Season 3 episode Mr. Conductor's Evil Twin. Odds are that this Schemer Presents segment was taped before or after the episode's taping.(Contributed by Daniel Celano)

Mr. Conductor's Evil Twin (left) - The Meaning of Time (right)

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