Bunches of References Accumulated In a Nutshell (a.k.a - BRAIN)
The official Cultural Reference Guide for the animated series:
Pinky and the Brain
Version 1.0
Release date October-6-1997
Edited and Compiled by Brian Norman (acmelabs1@aol.com).
For a full introduction and explanation to this guide, see section 1.
Episode: 14
"It's Only a Paper World" --
+ The milk ad slogan that Pinky can't seem to remember is "Got Milk?", from
a popular series of advertisements of the late 1990's sponsored by
America's Dairy Farmers. (BN)
- Rob Paulsen (Pinky) actually did a voice over in one of the "Got Milk?"
commercials. He was the voice of the radio announcer in the "Who shot
Alexander Hamilton?" commercial. (KL)
+ Seen on the blackboard of Acme Labs:
. CHAKA -- this was the mark of a tagger who scrawled the said word in
some 18,000+ various places in Southern California between the years
of 1991-94. (KL)
. KISS RULES -- KISS is the rock band whose painted faces helped them
rise to fame in the mid 1970s. (ME)
+ Happy Bob the Painter (the painter on the television Pinky is imitating)
is a parody of the late Bob Ross and his "Joy of Painting" program. He
frequently used the words "happy little" in his descriptions of things in
nature as he painted. (ME)
+ Paul Anka is a singer and songwriter who had several big hits during the
late 1950s and early '60s. He wrote "My Way", one of Frank Sinatra's
biggest hits, and the Johnny Carson-era theme for "The Tonight Show".
+ Carrot Top is the red-haired comedian who relies heavily on props for his
laughs. (ME)
+ Jaime "Klinger" Farr, played the role of Klinger on the 1972-83 television
series M*A*S*H. (BN)
+ The woman on the television creating various crafts is a parody of famous
'how-to' woman Martha Stewart and her television program "Martha Stewart
Living". (BN)
+ Art Buchwald is a writer who won a lawsuit against Paramout Pictures for
plagarizing his idea for the movie "Coming To America" which he had
submitted to them. (ME)
+ "Two, two, two earths in one," is a reference to the slogan for Certs
breath mints -- "Two, two, two mints in one." (BN)
+ "The Wayans Brothers" is (what passes for) a sitcom on the WB Network.
+ Regis Philbin is the co-host of "Live With Regis and Kathie Lee", a
successful morning show in the U.S. (ME)
- DYN - One scene shows one paper quite clearly, as the "Cleve[land] Plain
Dealer" (the 'land' is not in there as its currently being ripped up). Of
course, the Cleveland Plain Dealer *is* a real paper (the only paper for
the Cleveland area actually). The first word, "Browns" can be clearly
read, but I can't make out the rest. This easily appears to be a ref to
the recent move of the football team to Baltimore from Cleveland. (MN)
- The briefest snatch of the Animaniacs short "Variety Speak" when Pinky is
putting strips of the paper back together, as that newspaper was one which
appeared in "Variety Speak". (DG, RO)
+ Pinky thinks that a fresco is a can of carbonated soda. He is probably
confusing it with "Fresca". (BN)
+ Pinky's sphinx looks surprisingly like Jim Davis' Garfield character. (BN)
+ Brain's comment, "You are a fist full of stupidity!" is a reference to
the 1964 movie "Fist Full of Dollars". (ME)
+ "Our basketball players more Mike like!" is a reference to basketball
superstar Michael Jordan of the Chicago Bulls and a 1990's series of ads
for the sports drink Gatorade which encouraged us to drink their product
to "Be Like Mike". (ME, BN)
+ The name "Chia Earth" is borrowed from "Chia Pets" (and various other
derivatives such as "Chia Head"), animal-shaped clay objects on which you
grow chia (a grass-like substance). The chia seeds sprout and grow. (ME)
+ The "Trademark, Brain? -- Yes, Pinky, trademark" gag was used on the
Pinky and the Brain "You Will Buy This Video" video. (DG)
+ "Dollywood" is a theme park in mountains of east Tennessee owned by
country-western singer/songwriter/actress Dolly Parton. (ME, BN)
- There is a character in the stock exchange scene that looks exactly like
Wakko's barber from the Animaniacs short "Boot Camping" (who incidentally
is a caricature of Floyd Lawson -- see CRGA for further reference) (BN)
+ The "fists of fury" comment is taken from the 1971 Bruce Lee movie known
in the U.S.A as "Fists of Fury" but known to the rest of the world as "The
Big Boss". (ME)
+ Late night talk show host David Letterman is depicted doing his famous top
ten list. (ME)
+ President Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich, the Speaker of the U.S. House of
Representatives are playing with boxing nuns. (ME)
+ Quentin Tarantino is the writer/director who became famous as the man who
directed the movie "Pulp Fiction". (ME)
+ Notice in the White House a "Presidenting for Dummies" book. This is a
parody of the famous "For Dummies" series from IDG books, which began with
a series of computer titles, but has since branched out into other topics.
+ Amy Carter is the daughter of former President Jimmy Carter. (ME)
+ Xuxa is a Brazilian children's show host who had a show on the Family
Channel, she is also well known world wide for her children's records.
(JK, ME)
+ Pinky sings a tune from a commercial for "King Vitamin", a classic cereal
(which apparently is still in production) from Quaker Oats. This
particular commercial jingle aired sometime in the 1950-60's. (ME, BN)
+ The sequence with the world monuments exploding parodies a similar scene
from the 1996 film "Independence Day". (BN)
- DYN - Dvorak's Symphony No. 9 (From the New World), 1st and 2nd movements,
was used extensively in this episode. Nice musical selection considering
Pinky and the Brain were creating a "New World". (BT)
- Why did Pinky use his 'alternate' sayings "fjord" and "troz"? A subtle
reference to the alternate earth? (DG)
Episode: 15
"Collect 'Em All" --
+ Johann Gutenberg is credited with producing the first work using movable
type in 1455, in Mainz, Germany -- the first item was the so-called
"42-line Bible." Actually, it's probable that his financial backer,
Johann Fust, and another printer, Peter Schoeffer, probably did most of
the work. (EOC)
+ Police Academy 4 was the last Police Academy film in which Steve
Guttenberg played the role of Mahoney. (JK)
- "Girlie calendars I printed for the blacksmith shops" is probably a
reference to those calendars featuring female models in skimpy clothes
holding tools, posing with automobiles, or both. (ME)
"Pinkasso" --
+ "Two noses up" parodies movie critics Siskel and Ebert's famous way of
making movie recommendations, two thumbs up. (ME)
+ Lenny and Squiggy were characters from the TV shows "Happy Days" and
"Laverne and Shirley". (JK)
+ "15 minutes of fame" is the compact version of Andy Warhol's famous saying:
"In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes." (ME)
+ The Macarena was a popular, but short-lived dance craze of 1996. (JK)
- DYN - Dot Warner admiring one of "Pinkasso's" paintings. (RB)
- Wakko and Yakko were there too, though Yakko is visible only for a
fraction of a second before a foreground extra obscures him. (RO)
- DYN - when the Brain was claiming to be Robert Del Monte, he was holding
a pen in his right hand? Bob Dole is known for holding a pen in his
right hand because of a war wound, he carries the pen so that people will
not extend their right hands to shake his. The pen serves as a reminder
to people that the hand is occupied. (RN, RKM)
- Not to mention the fact that "Del Monte" cans fruit, just as "Dole" does.
+ The background music for the scenes in the art gallery comes from
"Pictures At An Exhibition" by Mussorgsky. (BKH)
+ One of the bidders holds up a card which reads 839: this refers to the
Motion Picture Screen Cartoonists union, local 839 that represents
cartoonists in the Los Angeles area. (ME)
Episode: 16
"Plan Brain from Outer Space" --
+ The title is, of course, a reference to the infamous Ed Wood sci-fi flick
"Plan Nine from Outer Space" (1959). It, along with "Heaven's Gate," is
a virtual synonym for bad movie making. (EOC)
+ The Z Files == The X Files, a popular Fox show about two FBI agents who
investigate cases involving supernatural incidents. (JK)
+ Xuxa is mentioned again (see Epsiode #14)
+ Lard Copy == Hard Copy, a news show that goes beyond the headlines to get
the news. (JK)
+ Roswell is a city in New Mexico that is believed to be home of one of the
most popular alien cover-ups of all time. (JK)
+ Area 51 is the place that is rumored to hold the aliens of the Roswell
incident. It is also, as the "ufologists" claim, where aliens routinely
land and/or where the government test-flies craft built with alien
technology. (JK, RO)
+ The guard at Area 51 is a caricature of Gomer Pyle. (JK)
+ "Hangar 18" was a 1980 movie about government folks capturing and
concealing an alien craft. (RO)
+ Conflicting reports about the 'non-movie' Hangar 18, so I'll list both:
. After the Roswell incident, there was another, less publicized crash
(supposedly) in Nevada. What with Area 51 being so close by, the AAF,
according to ufologists, scooped up the bodies and the ship, and put
them in Hangar 18 of the base. (JFL)
. Hangar 18 is at Wright-Patterson A.F.B. in Dayton, Ohio and is where
the remains of the aliens were/are(?) stored. (ME)
+ Generals Jones and Maltese == Looney Tunes director Chuck Jones and his
favorite writer, Michael Maltese. (RB)
+ A nod to the legend that Walt Disney is cryogenically frozen (he actually
went the other route; he was cremated). I wonder what the "68" stands
for; can't be the year he died, since that was 1966. Perhaps it's the
year of, ahem, "acquisition." (EOC)
+ The song the major alien sang while looking for Brain parodies the classic
jingle of Oscar Myer bologna. (JK)
+ "I'm Not the President, I'm Also a Client" is the famous catch phrase of
the Hair Club for Men. (JK)
- Other Hangar 18 occupants include:
. Bigfoot
. Elvis - Famous American rock-and-roll singer, died August 16, 1977.
However, many believed him to have faked his death, and that he
still lives on today. (See numerous K-Mart sightings of Elvis in
your local tabloids.) (BN)
. Jimmy Hoffa - Former leader of the Teamsters Union, rumored to have
been associated with organized crime. He disappeared in 1975 and is
believed to have been kidnapped and murdered. (Some rumors exist
that the burial site is in the end-zone of Giants' stadium in New
Jersey.) (BN)
. Gov't Cheese
. Ark of the Covenant - probably in reference to the 1981 film "Raiders
of the Lost Ark", where the last seen shows a lowly mover stowing the
Ark away in a gigantic warehouse. (MN)
- Interesting point: The comic PatB #6, with the same title as this episode,
came out the week immediately after the first airing of this. This was
unintentional, and purely coincidence on the part of WBA and WBWP,
according to Robert Graff. The comic story bears no resemblance to the
story in this episode. (MN)
Episode: 17
"The Mummy" --
+ The plot of this episode is based on the work German researcher Rudolf
Gantenbrink. He headed a team that explored an air shaft 8 inches square
in the Great Pyramid at Gizeh, using a remote controlled probe named
UPUAUT. On March 22, 1993, 210 feet into this air duct, a miniature stone
door was found. As of this writing, it is still unknown as to exactly
what lies beyond that door. (BN)
+ It also appears that this short also in part parodies the 1959 horror film
"The Mummy". In the film archaeologists are warned against desecrating
the tomb of Egyptian Princess Ananka. The character who warns the
archaeologists in this short resembles Peter Cushing who I believe played
a similar role in the film. (The voice credits list "Cushing" as one of
the characters in the short.) (BN)
+ The Rolling Stones is a rock group that became famous in the 1960's. (ME)
- NIT: In one scene, Egypt is spelled Egyt. (ME)
+ Space Mountain is roller coaster at the Disney theme parks which, like
most roller coasters, have a height requirement. (ME)
+ "Early in the morn-ing" and the way it's sung are taken from the sea
chantey "What Shall We Do With the Drunken Sailor". (EOC)
- DYN - Signs the protesters are carrying: (ME)
. Mummies are people too!
. Meat is murder
. My mommy was a mummy
. I love Khufu!
. I'm KooKoo for Khufu
+ The Olsen twins (Mary-Kate and Ashley) are known for their role as
Michelle on the 1980's sitcom "Full House". They have made several,
less than impressive TV and made-for-video movies in which they solve
mysteries. (BN)
- DYN - Martin Sheen as one of the protesters. (The one who apologizes to
Pinky and the Brain for their treatment.) Notice his button, Sheen has
been arrested several times during anti-nuclear demonstrations. (RN, BN)
+ Marco Polo is a game played in pools or large hot tubs where a blindfolded
individual has to try to listen for another player to respond to "Marco"
with "Polo" and then attemp to tag or grab hold of the speaker. (RO)
"Robin Brain" --
+ Kevin Costner with an English accent refers to "Robin Hood: Prince of
Thieves", a 1991 film starring Kevin Costner as the title character. (JK)
+ The camera following the arrow flight is also borrowed from "Robin Hood:
Prince of Thieves". (EOC)
+ Friar Chuck == Friar Tuck, one of Robin Hood's merry men. (JK)
+ The diamond log joke refers to the fact that many California highways and
freeways have what is called a "Diamond Lane". The left lane is marked
with diamonds painted every so often in the lane. This lane is reserved
for cars with two or more passengers. If you're caught driving solo in
the Diamond Lane, you have to pay a large fine. It's supposed to
encourage car pooling. Many metropolitan areas have similar lanes known
as HOV (High Occupancy Vehicle) lanes. (RM, RN, KW)
- NIT: The quarterstaff battle was between Robin Hood and Little John, not
between Robin and the Friar (or Fryer, in this case). (BN)
+ The Mighty Mallards == The Mighty Ducks, a Disney-owned hockey team named
after the 1992 sleeper hit. (JK)
+ Note Brain's use of Peter Finch's "mad as hell and I'm not going to take
it anymore" speech from the movie "Network" (a role, as mad anchorman
Howard Beale, for which he won a posthumous Oscar). (EOC)
+ There was also one subtle joke, in the exchange between Robin Hood and
Brain; Robin Hood notes that Brain is smaller than he appears in his
posters, and Brain makes a similar comment back to Robin Hood. Errol
Flynn, who played Robin Hood in the 1938 film version (and who seems to
be the model for this version) was notoriously sensitive about his
height, and relative lack thereof. (EOC)
- DYN - that all of Pinky's usual sayings had been appended with 'th'..for
example "Zortth" "Narfth", etc, to make them sound Old English-like. (MN)
Episode: 18
"The Pink Candidate" --
+ The opening shot of Dole and Kemp refers to Circus of the Stars, a event
seen on CBS between Thanksgiving and Christmas which has celebrities
perform circus acts. (JK)
+ The host of the circus, Anson "Stop Calling Me Pottsy" Williams, is
probably best known for his role as Pottsy in the 1970's sitcom "Happy
Days". (BN)
+ "The Family Circus" is a popular one panel comic strip written by Bil
Keane about family life from the view of a child. (JK)
+ To further the Bil Keane reference: When the newspaper reports that
Keane has gone on vacation and "Billy" is filling in for him, it refers
to the fact that on occasion, Keane will draw "The Family Circus" in a
childish style and say it was drawn by Billy, the oldest child in the
family, while Keane takes the day off. (RD)
+ The scene with the Meryl Streep caricature with her back to her boring
husband, looking out into the garden at the Clint Eastwood character is
a reference to the 1995 film "Bridges of Madison County" (JJW)
- Missing on the back cover of Time magazine: B. CALDWELL ALIAS S.B. ELF.
The reference here is to (Annie Award winning) storyboard artist Barry
Caldwell. According to lore, Barry Caldwell is often not to be found
in the animation studio. Nobody ever sees him, and when he's there, his
door is closed....but, just when you think he's not doing anything,
there, on his desk, are a bunch of story board ("S.B.") pages that he
did sometime, somewhere, like a little elf in the night.
- NIT: While the Green Party is certainly no force in U.S. politics, they
are gaining power and influence in Europe, particularly Germany. (RD)
+ The other member of Pinky's party is James Carville; Carville is, of
course, famed as Clinton's 1992 guru. (RB)
- Here is the list of candidates in the polls when first announced in the
episode: (JK, RD)
. Bill Clinton
. Pinky
. Pat Paulsen - first became famous with his appearances on the Smothers
Brothers show, and ran for President several times, most recently
1996. He never expected to win, but running did give him publicity
and the chance to joke and comment on the political scene.
. The Trix Rabbit
. Bob Dole
+ "You just might be a redneck" is comedian Jeff Foxworthy's famous quote.
+ Tiger Beet == Tiger Beat, a magazine for teenagers. (JK)
+ The boat with the bimbos reference is a reference to Gary Hart's little
interlude on the good ship "Monkey Business" in 1984 in the Florida Keys
with Donna Rice. (EOC, BC)
+ When Pinky is called "the Teflon candidate", it refers to Ronald Reagan
being called "the Teflon President", which came from people observing that
no charges of wrongdoing that occurred during his tenure as President
stuck to him. (RD)
+ The mysterious operative for the smear campaign, and his initial speech,
is based on the Robert Shaw character from "Jaws," the grizzled seaman who
offers to go kill the shark. As usual, Richard Stone is musically equal
to the reference: the music playing in the background as he speaks is the
song "Farewell and Adieu, You Fair Spanish Ladies," which Shaw sang
incessantly throughout the shark opus. (JJW)
+ "Super-sizing", as President Clinton mentions, refers to a McDonald's deal
where for 39 cents more, you can upgrade your drink and fries to a larger
size. (BN)
+ The "Pinky Upsets Dewey" headline refers to the most famously inaccurate
newspaper headline ever, from the 1948 presidential campaign, when one
paper reported that Thomas Dewey had defeated Harry Truman. Truman held
up a copy of that paper proudly when it was announced that he had won the
election. (RD)
+ The Jerky Boys are a comedy group known for their prank telephone calls.
+ When Pinky asks his staff to pray with him, it refers to a similar request
from Richard Nixon to (IIRC) Henry Kissinger near the end of Nixon's term
as President. In addition, the final scene, with Pinky and the Brain
preparing to leave Washington via helicopter, refers to Nixon departing
the White House grounds in similar fashion after his resignation. (RD)
- NIT: We never see who Pinky chose as his Vice President. Since Pinky has
studied the Constitution, he'd be well aware of his responsibilities along
those lines. (RD)
Episode: 19
"Brain's Song" --
+ The episode itself is, in part, a parody of the award-winning 1970 TV
movie "Brian's Song," about the relationship between Chicago Bears player
Brian Piccolo (played by James Caan) and Gale Sayers (played by Billy Dee
Willaims), and the tragedy which affects the entire team when Piccolo
develops cancer. The movie itself is a classic tearjerker, and hence
lies the crux of the PatB plot. (EOC)
+ The treatment Pinky undergoes at the beginning of the episode is lifted
from the 1971 film, "A Clockwork Orange". (JK)
+ The scenes Pinky saw were: (JK)
. Evil Kenivel's jump, which takes off his failed jump attempt two
decades ago.
. Lisa Marie Presley (daughter of Elvis) writing a letter to her
ex-husband, Michael Jackson.
. P&B Biography, a spoof of A&E Biography, a show that talks about the
lives of different people, with a new topic each week.
. A parody of Disney's 1994 animated feature "The Lion King". Looks to
be very similar to "The Tiger Prince" spoof from Animaniacs
episode 74.
+ G. Gordon Liddy became famous as being one of the Watergate burglars and
is now a radio talk show host. (ME)
+ Jiffy Lube is a quick oil change business. (ME)
+ Meadowlark Lemon is best known as a former member of the Harlem
Globetrotters basketball team. (ME)
+ Demi Moore rewriting Great Expectations is a parody of how the movie
"The Scarlett Letter" was drastically changed from the book. (ME)
+ The Jamaican bobsled team of the 1988 Olympics made news because they
were from a warm-weather country with no tradition of winter sports
whatsoever. A Disney movie, "Cool Runnings" was made about the team
in 1993. (EOC, BN)
+ The 'playfield' that the mice use is an electronic football game that was
immensely popular in the 1970s. You'd turn it on, and the 'players'
would be vibrated across the 'field'. It was VERY noisy, and as
demonstrated by Brain, it could easily give one the jitters. (MN)
- Pinky as Coach Bear Bottom, is probably a parody of the late Bear Bryant,
the Univ. of Alabama's great football coach. (EOC)
+ Toduh == Today (NBC's morning program), which as of this writing, is in
its 41st year. The gentleman on the left is ex-cohost Bryant Gumbel,
and the person on the right is host Katie Couric. (EOC)
+ "Jellyroll" Morton was an important musician in jazz history. (ME)
Episode: 20
"Welcome to the Jungle" --
+ The thing at the end of Brain's student film refers to Mark VII
Productions, the producers of Dragnet. (JK)
+ The "Simian Liberation Army" is based on those animal rights activist
organizations that free laboratory animals so they won't be experimented
on by scientists. (ME)
+ Hakuna Matata is Swahili quote that became a catch phrase in 1994 thanks
to the Disney animated feature, "The Lion King". (JK)
+ Davey Crockett was a famous American frontiersman, politician, who died
heroicly defending the Alamo. Stories of his adventures have made him a
legend. (ME)
+ The leech bit was from "THE AFRICAN QUEEN." (1951) Humphrey Bogart has
to get out of the boat and pull it, and when he gets back in, he is
covered with leeches and he says that he hates them. (RN)
+ Ruth Bader Ginsberg is a justice on the U.S. Supreme Court. (ME)
+ Club Med is a world wide chain of vacation resorts. (ME)
+ The Snowball plot line takes off "Apocalypse Now", a 1979 film in which
Martin Sheen is sent to Vietnam to find and kill a crazed colonel played
by Marlon Brando, who has set up a ruthless dictatorship. (JK, BN)
+ The fanatic follower of Snowball who speaks to Pinky and the Brain when
they are tied to the stake is a parody of Dennis Hopper, who played a
neurotic photographer in "Apocalypse Now", and is noted for his movie
roles in which he plays, "a manic-crazy psycho", as Pinky notes. The
same caricature seen here can be seen in the Animaniacs episode entitled
"Hearts of Twilight". (BN)
+ $1.99, are you out of your mind? is a catch phrase for Denny's. (JK)
+ Greg Maddux is a multiple Cy Young award winning pitcher for Major League
Baseball. He's been with the Atlanta Braves since 1993. (ME)
Episode: 21
"A Little Off the Top" --
+ This short takes its text from the Bible, specifically the Book of Judges,
Chapters 13 through 16, where the story of Samson, the original strong
man, is told. (EOC)
+ It also, to a certain extent, is a spoof of the 1949 Cecil B. DeMille
version of the story:
. Delilah - is a spoof of Hedy Lamarr. Delilah's unintelligible
German/English speech is a reference to the fact that Hedy had a
noticeable German accent, though it wasn't anywhere near that bad.
. Samson - is something of a spoof of Victor Mature. (EOC)
. George Sanders is also caricatured as the leader of the Philistines;
he did win an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in "All About Eve" and
his second wife was Zsa Zsa Gabor, and he was briefly married to
Magda Gabor shortly before his suicide in 1972. (EOC)
. The lion fighting scene is a specific parody of a well-known scene
from the DeMille version. (EOC)
- Unfortunately, the characters aren't drawn to look anything like the
original actors. A real missed opportunity on the part of the character
designers. (JJW)
"Megalomaniacs Anonymous" --
+ I assume it was Al Haig who was in the television ad for Megalomaniacs
Anonymous. Al Haig was the Secretary of State in 1981-82 under President
Reagan and had to resign after a series of quarrels with senior members of
the White House staff. (RN, BN)
+ The Al Haig gag with "I'm in Charge" refers to a specific statement he
made at a press conference on the day Ronald Reagan was nearly
assassinated by John Hinckley, in March of 1981. Haig, some think, meant
to indicate that he was the person in charge on the spot (since a number
of others, such as then VP Bush and then Speaker O'Neill were out of
town), but this was generally viewed as Haig being, well, a megalomaniac.
+ "Ishtar" was 1987 film that starred Warren Beatty and Dustin Hoffman, and
is most famous for being a flop in the box office. (JK)
+ Pinky's Playhouse is most likely a reference to "Pee-wee's Playhouse", a
popular cult children's show of the 1980's starring Paul Reubens as
Pee-wee Herman. (JK)
+ Others in attendance at the meeting include Col. Qadaffi, Madonna, Ross
Perot, Joseph Stalin, Julius Ceasar, Steven Spielberg, Bill Gates, and
what may be SKG co-owners Jeff Katzenberg and David Geffen. (EOC, JJW)
+ The comment by Madonna that she no longer "Vogue's" but does the "Family
Circle", is a nice gag on magazine titles, dancing, and her recent
childbirth. (EOC)
Episode: 22
"Brain of the Future" --
+ Esther Williams musicals, made during the 1940's and 1950's, featured
her swimming ability. Thus, soaking up all the water would definitely
make another Esther Williams musical impossible to make. (ME)
+ Fernando Lamas was Esther Williams third husband. (BN)
+ Cosmos-politan magazine == Cosmopolitan magazine, a magazine known to
give small quizzes that determine how well one's marriage/sex life/
taste in clothes/etc. rates with their so-called experts, and which a
number of readers take quite seriously. (BN, MN)
- DYN - On the cover of Cosmos-politan, Hello Nurse in a Jetsonesque
costume. (MN, PCat)
+ The conversation of the present and future mice is *very* similar to the
one from the 1989 film "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure". (MN)
+ "Knowing too much of one's future" is a common motif in time travel
stories, most recently used in the "Back to the Future" series of films.
- NIT: The reporter announces that it's Clinton's 377th term in office.
Assuming that terms were to remain 4 years in length, and that his terms
were consecutive, that would give him 1508 years in office, beginning in
1992. That adds up to the year 3500, so January 12, 3502 AD would be
his 378th term, not his 377th. (BN)
+ The Canadian Prime Minister's voice was an impression of the Rick Moranis
character "Bob MacKenzie." (RO)
- USA attacking Canada may be a reference to the film "Canadian Bacon", a
1995 film about the US starting a war on Canada. (JK)
- The Jimi Hendrix roach seems reminiscent of a character in Ralph Bakshi's
"Cool World". (PCat)
+ The roach unveiling the Queen's statue is a parody of Ed Sullivan. Ed
Sullivan was the host of a long-running variety show on the Columbia
Broadcasting System from the late 40s to the early 70s. (It was called,
at various times, "The Toast of the Town" and "The Ed Sullivan Show.")
The show is probably best remembered for the historic appearances by Elvis
Presley and the Beatles. Sullivan's stiff manner and unique speech
pattern long made him the target of parodists. I am led to believe that
Moe LaMarche has made a specialty of doing Sullivan (and the cockroach
version is *very* well done, BTW). (EOC)
+ The Queen Roach is a parody of Zsa-Zsa Gabor. (many)
+ Pinky and the Brain's fruit disguises resemble the costumes of the
characters appearing in commercials for Fruit of the Loom underwear. (JK)
- BTW, 10 marks out of 10 for history, since 37 AD was in fact the year
Caligula became Emperor of Rome. (EOC)
+ Tia and Tamara are the stars of Sister, Sister, a WB show about twin
sisters. (JK)
Episode: 23
"Brinky" --
+ The exercise guru is Patrick Stewart, known for playing captain Jean-Luc
Picard on "Star Trek: The Next Generation", the phrases he uses are 'catch
phrases of Jean-Luc. (JK, BC)
+ Pauly Shore is an highly untalented actor who starred in such bombs as
"Encino Man", "Son-in-Law" and "Bio-Dome". (JK)
- DYN - The Superman logo on Brain's Band-Aid. (JK)
+ Brain's riff about "I'll make two clones..." is based on a famous
mid-1980's commercial for Faberge Organics shampoo -- "I'll tell two
friends, and they'll tell two friends and so on and so on and so on."
The screen would multiply much like it did on the computer monitor behind
Brain. (BC)
+ When the cloning machine starts to overheat, Brain calls out for Pinky's
help. When Pinky finally responds, Brain calls out "Push! Push!" Pinky
responds by breathing heavily. This is, of course, a reference to the
Lamaze method of natural childbirth. Forshadowing, perhaps, for his
upcoming Mommyhood? (JWo)
+ "You've got a male" == "You Got Mail", a sound played on America Online
when an e-mail message is received. (JK)
+ Pinky's original choice of name for the baby seems a bit off-color, as
Mandingo is a slang term for a well-endowed African, Latino, or Italian
+ Michael Crichton is a highly successful author/screenwriter, probably best
known currently for his novel-turned-blockbuster hit "Jurassic Park",
about the cloning of dinosaurs using preserved DNA. (BN)
+ Odin is the chief of the gods in Norse mythology. He was usually pictured
with a beard. Some types of cursing use characteristics of holy or well
known people (ex. 'od's bodkins, By Neptune's pantry, etc.) (BL)
+ "Be afraid. Be very afraid" was the catchphrase of the promo campaign
for the 1986 Jeff Goldblum remake of "The Fly". (RK)
+ "Pat the Bunny" is an actual book. It is designed as an interactive book
for babies to play with. It features a soft bunny (for babies to pat), a
small mirror, and more. (BN)
+ Dr. Benjamin Spock is a famous child psychologist. (ME)
+ Brain's growth chart is similar to those signs at the entrance of certain
theme park attractions that point a minimum height requirement. (ME)
+ Taraxacum officinale is the Latin name for dandelion. (ME)
+ "Jones" is slang for craving or desire. (ME)
+ Pinky's line involving the blacklist during the Charlie McCarthy hearings
is a rather involved cultural reference: (EOC)
. Charlie McCarthy, of course, was a character created by Edgar Bergen,
and was probably his most famous dummy. Charlie, who was famous for
his "feud" with W.C. Fields on Bergen's Chase and Sanbourn radio
programme in the late 30s, sported a monocle and usually (but not
exclusively) wore evening dress. Hence the linkup with ventriloquism.
. The other McCarthy being referred to is U.S. Senator Joe McCarthy
(R-Wis.), first elected in 1946. McCarthy, of course, has given his
name to an era of what some call hysterical anti-communism.
Certainly, McCarthy was a champion publicity hound, and made numerous
wild accusations, among other things, about the number of communists
in the State Department. His performance in the so-called
Army-McCarthy hearings in 1954 eventually led to his censure in 1954.
. The blacklist is something slightly different. The House Un-American
Activities Committee (HUAC for short) made a number of investigations
into the influence of the Communist Party in Hollywood, and held a
number of high-profile hearings on the matter in 1947, and another
round in 1951, at which a number of Hollywood stars testified. A
number, however, refused to testify. The refusal of this group
(which eventually got the nickname "The Hollywood Ten") got them
blacklisted by the major studios, and the group (mostly screenwriters,
like Dalton Trumbo, Alvah Bessie and Ring Lardner, Jr., but also
well-known director Edward Dmytryk, who eventually testified and was
removed from the blacklist) could not find work under their own names.
The actual blacklist was maintained by a self-appointed vigilante
group called Aware, and was circulated by the American Legion. While
the blacklist died out in the late 50s, the aftershocks continue to
this day; witness the views of some people regarding Elia Kazan, who
testified and was viewed by some as a snitch.
+ "Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf" is a play, later made into a movie,
about two couples who constantly bicker in front of another couple. (ME)
+ "I have no clone" refers to the "I have no son" line "The Jazz Singer", a
1927 film about a guy who ignores his father's wishes and becomes a singer
instead of a priest. (JK)
- Places on Brain's list of places: (ME)
. NYU - New York University
. library
. museum
. MIT - Massachusetts Institute of Technology
. The Franklin Mint - maker of collectibles
. The Pat Harrington Dinner Theater - Pat Harrington is best known as
Dwayne Schneider on One Day At A Time.
+ Pete Rose holds baseball's record for career hits, but received a lifetime
suspension from baseball in 1989 after allegations that he had bet on
baseball games, including games played by his own team. (BN)
+ When Romie asks for a drink by saying, "Hey, Don McLean, the levee is
dry," he is referring to McLean's 1972 hit song "American Pie". A line
from the chorus of that song is "drove my Chevy to the levee but the
levee was dry". (RD)
- Bar doesn't accept checks from:
. Flea Bailey - F. Lee Bailey, best known lately for being one of
O.J. Simpson's attorneys during the Simpson criminal trial. (ME)
. Saul Below - author Saul Bellow, much of his work features alienated
individuals in an indifferent society. In 1976, he won both the
Pulitzer Prize in fiction and the Nobel Prize for literature.
(Treesong, BN)
. Jo-Jo The Thirsty Boy
+ Rikki Lake == Ricki Lake, one of many trashy talk shows on TV today. (JK)
+ Romy's "My two dads..." reference is another multi-level reference. "My
Two Dads" was a sitcom in the late 1980's with the premise of a girl
living with two men, both her "dads". Bob Saget and Dave Coulier were
two stars of "Full House", a sitcom which involved three girls living
with their father (Saget) and his two bachelor friends (Coulier and John
Stamos). (BC, BN)
+ Guggenheim - The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, in New York City, is
considered to have one of the finest collections of modern art.
Incidentally, the museum was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. (ME)
+ Euripides is the ancient Greek author perhaps best known for his play
Medea and its deus ex machina ending. (ME)
+ "When, in the course of human events" are the first few words of
America's Declaration of Independence. (ME)
+ "Savannah" is a drama on the WB network produced by Aaron Spelling. (JK)
+ The Grateful Dead stopped touring in 1995 when the lead singer, Jerry
Garcia, died in a drug rehabilitation center. (ME)
- Another interesting point, re: Romy's voice. What was clever about it
was that when Romy was young and speaking more like Pinky, he was voiced
by Maurice LaMarche (Brain), and when he was older and speaking more like
Brain, he was voiced by Rob Paulsen (Pinky). It emphasizes further how
Romy is indeed a combination of Pinky's and the Brain's DNA. (RO & many)
- Here's one for the perfect timing file. The same weekend that this
episode aired, cloning made national news when the first ever clone of a
mammal, in this case a sheep, was completed successfully. (BN)
Episode: 24
"Two Mice and a Baby" --
+ Title refers to "3 Men and a Baby", a 1987 film in which three bachelors
take custody of a orphan baby girl. (JK)
+ The plot of the episode spoofs the 'origin of Superman' story. See the
episode, "The Last Son of Krypton" on the WB animated series Superman for
comparison. (EOC)
+ Salad Spinner == Salad Shooter, a kitchen utility that spits out what it
slices. (ME)
- DYN - One of the things Brain had for observing the stars was an
Etch-a-Sketch. (JK)
+ G.I. Jack == G.I. Joe, a popular line of action figures. (JK)
+ The Singing Nun was a record from the early 1960's. (EOC)
+ The large, orange dinosaur on TV is Baloney, first seen in the Animaniacs
short "Baloney and Kids", and is a parody of Barney, a large, purple
dinosaur of a PBS educational series. (BN)
+ "The Flying Nun" was a late 1960's sitcom starring Sally Field as a young
nun in a convent in Puerto Rico who could fly. (ME)
"The Maze" --
+ Brain's "a superior intellect is an appalling object to squander" is a
clever rephrasing of NAACP slogan - "A mind is a terrible thing to waste."
+ Branson, Missouri (USA) is famous for its concentration of country music
attractions. (ME)
+ The Banana Splits was a Saturday morning show in the late 1960's about a
band of animals. It was created by Hanna-Barbera with the costumes of the
Banana Splits done by puppeteers, Sid and Marty Krofft. (JK)
+ Pinky's line "I *am* the King" was also used by Rob Paulsen as Yakko in
Animaniacs episode #10 "King Yakko" -- here's the reference according to
the CRGA:
* "I *am* the King" parodies a series of commercials from the
* mid-1980s. The ads were shown in the LA area and featured Paul "the King
* of Big-Screen", a television salesman. The ads show him wearing a crown,
* and the commercials always end with him saying, "I *am* the King." It is a
* joke that I imagine only LA residents would pick up on. (BH, RayD, BW)
+ Dilithium is what powers the starships in Star Trek (except the ship in
Star Trek : Voyager). (ME)
+ Vinny Barbarino was John Travolta's character in the TV show, "Welcome
Back, Kotter". (JK)
+ The scene with the various twisted staircases resembles M.C. Escher's
famous work, "House of Stairs". (CN)
- DYN - "Steppenwolf" (band famous for "Born to be Wild") in the 8-track of
Brain's contraption. (BN)
Episode: 25
"Leave it to Beavers" --
+ The title is a reference to the 1950-60's program "Leave it to Beaver"
starring Jerry Mathis. The similarity ends at the title though, as
nothing else in the episode refers to "Leave it to Beaver". (BN)
- NIT: Electrons are fired from a cathode-ray tube, not photons. (CSa)
+ Brain's comment: "I shall return," is the famous quote spoken by U.S.
General Douglas MacArthur. (BN)
"Cinebrainia" --
+ The title is a reference to "Cinemania", a computer CD-ROM reference of
films, actors\actresses and the movie industry which is published yearly
by Microsoft Corporation. (BN)
- There's a bit of a historical gap between Edison's invention (and in turn,
what appears to be meant as a clip from "The Great Train Robbery" (1979))
to 1920s-style comedy. (It's certainly post-1918, since Pinky refers to a
comeback by Kaiser Wilhem, who abidcated his position as emperor of
Germany in November, 1918 -- though Wilhelm spent the rest of his life in
Holland, and unlike his fellow Kaiser Karl Hapsburg, did not attempt a
comeback.) (EOC)
+ "The Great Train Robbery" is known for the legend that people ran out of
the theater when the train appeared on the screen. (JK)
+ Brain's mountee bit spoofs the Perils of Pauline, a silent film series
that led to the invention of cliffhangers in films. (JK)
+ "Hal Slug" == Hal Roach, independent producer of short & feature-length
comedies. His most famous stars were Laurel and Hardy (parodied here by
Pinky and the Brain), who worked for him from the twenties through the
early forties. He also produced the long running "Little Rascals" series
until he sold it to MGM in 1938. (JJW, ME)
+ Bathing beauties were a trademark of Mack Sennett, the silent-era
archrival to Hal Roach. (EOC)
+ The kid coming in as the mice are leaving is Carl Switzer who played
Alfalfa, one of the more famous members of the "Our Gang"/"Little Rascals"
series. According to a "Little Rascals" FAQ, he was killed after pulling
a knife on a man who owed him money and the man then shot him in
self-defense. (ME)
+ Clarence Birdseye figured out how to freeze food so that it could be sold
in grocery stores. (ME)
- DYN: The title card for "Get Squished" lists Russel Calabrese as the
director. Russel Calabrese directed the both segments of today's episode.
+ A reference to the infamous Jerry Lewis film "The Day the Clown Cried" can
be seen on one movie poster. It was a film about a clown that entertains
kids in a Nazi concentration camp which was never released. (EOC, JK)
- This is the second time that film has been referenced in a WBA cartoon;
the first, of course, was "The Wretched Clown" in Animaniacs' "Hearts of
Twilight" -- episode 20. (JJW)
+ Norma Talmadge started what we now know as the "Hollywood Walk of Fame"
when she accidently stepped into wet cement in front of Graumann's Chinese
Theater in 1927. (ME)
- "The Emperor Brain" is probably a reference to "The Emperor Jones" (see
the Paul Robeson version, 1933). (EOC)
- The scene with Brain in the desert is probably a reference to Rudolph
Valentino's performance in the 1921 silent film "The Sheik". (JK, BN)
+ The remaing person in the audience appears to be Walt Disney who gets the
idea for Mickey Mouse's ears from Brain's shadow. Notice the music
vaguely resembles "When You Wish Upon a Star" from Disney's "Pinocchio"
(1940). (ME)
+ "I'm ready for my closeup, Mr. DeMille" refers to Norma Desmond's famous
quote from "Sunset Boulevard", a 1950 movie about a silent screen actress
attempting a comeback. (ME)
+ Hollywoodland was a real estate development of the 1920s that either Roach
or Sennett (I think the former) was involved in. The venture failed, but
was the source of the famous "Hollywood" sign, which was shortened from
"Hollywoodland" in 1949. (EOC, ME)
Episode: 26
"Hoop Schemes" --
+ The title refers to the 1994 documentary "Hoop Dreams", filmed by
Frederick Marx, Peter Gilbert and Steve James. It follows two inner-city
Chicago high school basketball players, Arthur Agee and William Gates,
through high school and into college, as they pursue their dream of
playing in the NBA. The film won several critics awards, but did not
receive any Oscar nominations, which many felt it deserved. (BN)
+ Nathan Lane is an actor who is known for Broadway musicals such as "Guys
and Dolls", and "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum", which he
won a Tony for. He is also known for such films as "The Lion King", where
he voiced Timon the meerkat, and "The Birdcage". (JK)
- The line about him being greedy and needy is one whose specific reference
I can't pinpoint, but I recall that Lane refused to repeat his stage role
in "Love! Valour! Compassion!" in the film version; maybe he wanted more
money? (JJW)
- The opening song, with its "la-la-lo," may be reminiscent of a Simon &
Garfunkel song, "The Boxer," where the refrain was "Lie-a-lie." (JJW)
+ Peter Bogdanovich is a film director ["The Last Picture Show" (1971) and
"Paper Moon" (1973)] with a rather well-publicized sex life (his partners
including Cybill Shepherd and the late Dorothy Stratten). (JJW)
+ The Jordan-Baseball joke refers to 1993, when Michael Jordan "retired"
from the NBA and joined the Birmingham Barons, a minor league AA team part
of the Chicago White Sox organization. However, his baseball skills were
not as good as his basketball skills. Jordan decided to leave baseball
and returned to basketball in mid-1995. (JK, ME)
+ "Got My Mojo Working" is a much covered blues song either by Anne Cole or
Muddy Waters, depending on who you talk to. "Mojo" is a magic vodoo
charm. (ME)
- According to the billboard, Indiana is the "Home of Man". (BN)
+ The person Pinky suggests they're going to see in Indiana is Scott Joplin.
To my knowledge, Joplin never set foot in that state. Joplin (1868?-1917)
was the "King of Ragtime Writers," composing several tunes you've
undoubtedly heard before. Notable titles: Maple Leaf Rag,
The Entertainer, Gladiolus Rag. (RO)
+ Bobby Nacht == Bobby Knight, coach of the Indiana Hoosiers. Known as a
demanding disciplinarian with an explosive temper (Yes, he did in fact
throw chairs!). He led the Hoosiers to NCAA titles in 1976, 1981 and
1987. He also coached the gold medal winning men's basketball team of
the 1984 Olympics. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in
1991. (BN)
- And, of course, "Nacht" is German for "night." (RO)
+ Tom Lehrer is famous for his comedy songs of the 1950s and '60s. Notable
titles: The Masochism Tango, Poisoning Pigeons in the Park, So Long Mom
-- A Ballad for World War III, The Vatican Rag. He also wrote a couple
songs for the PBS children's program "The Electric Company". Currently,
Lehrer is a math professor at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
- Lehrer also wrote "The Elements", which obviously inspired the Animaniacs
songs "Yakko's World", "Wakko's America", and "The Presidents Song".
Lehrer's "New Math" was adapted by the A! staff for "Multiplication".
+ "Space Jam" was a 1996 film starring Michael Jordan. The plot centered
around Jordan joining the Looney Tunes in a basketball game against aliens
who stole the basketball talent from five NBA stars. (JK)
+ Brain's basketball teammates include:
. Jamie Furr == Jamie "Klinger on M*A*S*H" Farr. (JJW)
. Flop Wilson == Flip Wilson, comedian and host of an early 1970's
variety television show of the same name, on which Flip would dress
up in drag and play a character named Geraldine Jones. (BN)
. Chuck Foolery == Game show host ("The Love Connection") Chuck Woolery.
. Rue McClanahy == Rue McLanahan, from "The Golden Girls," and Lady
MacBird in the original production of the infamous underground 1960s
political satire, "MacBird." (OK, so that isn't relevant here, so
what.) (JJW)
. Dudley Bore == Actor, pianist and composer Dudley Moore. (BN)
. Maury Smovich == Daytime talk show host Maury Povich, formerly of
the television show "A Current Affair" and married to newswoman
Connie Chung. (BN)
+ Air Brain == Air Jordan, a brand of Nike sneakers endorsed by Michael
Jordan. (JK)
+ Pinky's basketball alias refers to Spud Webb, a professional basketball
player who despite his size, is a good slam dunker. (JK)
+ Brain's basketball alias refers to Muhammad Ali, a champion boxer. (JK)
- NIT - When playing the Bills, the scoreboard shows a time of 15:00. An
NBA quarter is only 12 minutes long, not 15. (BN)
+ The teams that Brain's team plays refer to the Chicago Bulls (Bills), Utah
Jazz (Tazz), Seattle Supersonics (Supertonics), L.A. Clippers (Knippers),
and the Orlando Magic (Tragic). (JK)
+ Layup's == Lay's Potato Chips, which had a commercial where two B-balls
stars (Larry Bird and Vlade Divac, I believe) shaved their heads bald
because of a bet where they ate more than one potato chip. (JK, BN)
- The person with Brain is Vlade Divac, formerly of the Los Angeles Lakers,
Traded to the Charlotte Hornets for the 1996-1997 season. (ME)
+ Brain's garish appearance and infantile behavior after he becomes a star
is obviously modeled after NBA's "bad-boy" Dennis Rodman. (JJW)
+ Broadcaster Marv Albert's catchphrase is, has been, and will be "Yessss!"
(Marv usually covers the New York Knicks and Rangers, but also known for
his NBC basketball work) (JJW)
+ Pheidippedes, according to the legend, ran 26 miles from Marathon to
Athens to announce the Greek victory over the Persians in 490 B.C. After
running 26 miles (and many more in the previous days trying to get
Spartans to help the Athenians fight the war), you too would have sweaty
feet! (ME)
- The music in the background to most of the basketball scenes seemed to be
a takeoff on "Sweet Georgia Brown" - which, of course, is the Harlem
Globetrotters' theme song. (BT)
The Pinky and the Brain characters and names are trademarks and (C) 1993, 1994
by Warner Bros., Inc. This document is neither endorsed nor approved by Warner
Bros., Inc.
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Lines denoted by '*' represent reprinted information from the Cultural
Reference Guide for Animaniacs (CRGA) (C) 1993, 1994 by Will B. Bell,
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