Monday, September 22, 2008

Internet Misinformation Database

Before Wikipedia came along and caught us all in its loving, link laden, open content, accountability free, arms, the great majority of my esoteric pop culture trivia needs were satisfied by IMDB. Although we take it totally for granted today, just five years ago, the IMDB was practically the only place where one could find clearly organized, relatively accurate information about movies and television that had absolutely no academic value whatsoever. Your high school librarian didn't know if Barbara Billingsley was still alive, it was doubtful that there were any academic reference books that verified that Yahpet Kotto was in "The Star Chamber", and the Encyclopedia Britannica was of no help in telling you the name of that episode of "Miami Vice" where Bill Russell played a gambling addicted judge and Bernard King played his son (in fact, with the new video feature you can actually watch it for free).

During those wild early years of turn of the millennium, AOL based internet, IMDB along with "All Music Guide" covering the music side, were the two sacred tomes from which all relevant information followed. Even today, with Wikipedia exponentially spreading its user created, reference producing tendrils out over every form of possible human knowledge to the point where it'll one day give you a "Trivia" section that'll predict the date of your death to the minute, I still turn occasionally to the IMDB to get a deeper pool of information. There's also the "Movie and TV News" sidebar to keep me abreast of important "who's canoodling who in Hollywood?" information.

Owing to the significance of the IMDB during my formative years , it was always a shared dream of mine and a few of my high school friends to one day actually be listed within the database. It didn't matter if it was as the headliner for a record breaking blockbuster or as assistant to the fluffer for a third rate listed porno; to be a part of the actual reference itself, to be connected even by the most tenuous and tangential of threads to this great universal pop culture tableau was one of the noblest of goals. As of now I can actually proudly say that I am friends with a few listed individuals, some with more extensive listings than others.

Oddly enough, even after appearing on three nationally aired television game shows (albeit two of them in the boondocks of the cable landscape), I never thought of the possibility that I might have been listed. I always figured being on a game show to be the "acting" equivalent of being interviewed on the street for a local news broadcast. With an incredibly limited exception of notables nobody really gains any lasting general fame from a game show appearance. Since a game show rarely ever makes an references to a past contestant, win or lose, you exist in the ether of your particular episodes and you're essentially gone forever. With such an endless parade of the non-famous working their way through the daily meat grinder of game shows, it's hardly worth IMDBs time to give any memorial to the faces.

So imagine my surprise when, while idly wasting time on the internet, I recently came across my profile! Apparently my failtastic performance on GSN's "Grand Slam" was listed along with all the other contestants, thus being forever immortalized with my modest little plot on the vast IMDB landscape. However, what came up as an even more surprising discovery were my additional credits along with my "Grand Slam" appearance.

Did you know that about six months before I filmed my performance on "Grand Slam" I played a small role as "Bailiff Sullivan" on an episode of the long running daytime soap classic "Days of Hour Lives"?

Regardless I am quite proud of my role as "the Bailiff" since it demonstrated that my acting range was not limited to just playing doctors as in my debut role as "Dr. Allen" in the family classic "The Ultimate Gift" with James Garner and Lee Meriwether. It also showed that I could act for TV and film (or at least straight to DVD).

Of course I still keep busy with my work behind the camera like when I assisted the producer of an episode of "Star Trek: New Voyages". In fact my proudest accomplishment is obviously my work in "2 Guys" which I juggled the three roles of script supervisor, associate producer, and first assistant director. Although there doesn't appear to be an actual copy of this film available anywhere and any internet search for it returns random links to gay pornography, I am still quite proud of my important role in the production. After all anonymous, unwatched films don't script supervise, associate produce, first assistant direct themselves.

As surprising as it was for IMDB to have found all these previously unknown accolades. I was really impressed with their thoroughness when I noticed they uncovered in the "additional details" section, my 1978 cover photo in "Swimming World".

What can I say? Try as I might, I can't escape my (fake) fame.


  1. Victor, I think I have seen you around studying on 2M.

    Signed, friend of a friend from East Meadow who now attends SJL.

  2. Hey, aren't we in a fantasy baseball league together?

    And yes, I can usually be found around 2M giving the illusion of studying.

  3. As one of the elite few people that you know that is listed on IMDB (and legitimatly I might add), I can say with confidence that it is in fact all that it is cracked up to be. I have accepted the fact that I will most likely never write a great pop song, nor deliver a tour de force performance after dying a tragic death of an accidental overdoes of sleeping pills, or invade a country, I will forever be known throughout history (for as we know the internet is nuclear war proof) as the Key Office PA on Believe in Me. My place in the sands of time is secure, and I've never even been to Waterloo.

  4. And now you have a second stake in history, forever immortalized among the comments of my small, infrequently updated blog.

  5. No, I am not in the league, I was just the auctioneer, and one with an irregular cadence in "going once twice, sold."

    The illusion of studying is basically what I am doing right now. I interrupted my memo writing for this; should you be so inclined, you could feel honored, but even I don't feel it is worth such a fuss.