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 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 1:21 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

I just watched my first episode of American cult series GILLIGAN'S ISLAND. Not because I was expecting high quality drama (or comedy), but because I assumed Williams had scored it, and I was curious.

This was, namely, the pilot episode called "Two on A Raft". And from what I've read, Williams scored this pilot (and only the pilot), whose score was then chopped up and used here and there throughout the series. However, from the end credits, it was apparently scored by someone named Frank Comstock, who I've never heard of.

On the other hand, I also remember reading something (Jeff Eldridge's buyer's guide in FSM?) about this pilot score being "lost". So does that mean that there is ANOTHER pilot episode out there, perhaps the story on HOW they wound up on the island(?) that is not available anywhere? So it is - in essence - IMPOSSIBLE to get a glimpse of Williams' music for this unless you know what to listen for in the episodes where his "lost" pilot score was used?

Jeff?

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 1:33 PM   
 By:   Saul Pincus   (Member)

I just watched my first episode of American cult series GILLIGAN'S ISLAND. Not because I was expecting high quality drama (or comedy), but because I assumed Williams had scored it, and I was curious.

This was, namely, the pilot episode called "Two on A Raft". And from what I've read, Williams scored this pilot (and only the pilot), whose score was then chopped up and used here and there throughout the series. However, from the end credits, it was apparently scored by someone named Frank Comstock, who I've never heard of.

On the other hand, I also remember reading something (Jeff Eldridge's buyer's guide in FSM?) about this pilot score being "lost". So does that mean that there is ANOTHER pilot episode out there, perhaps the story on HOW they wound up on the island(?) that is not available anywhere? So it is - in essence - IMPOSSIBLE to get a glimpse of Williams' music for this unless you know what to listen for in the episodes where his "lost" pilot score was used?


Sorry, Thor - I just fell off my chair reading "American cult series GILLIGAN'S ISLAND." I'm not sure you're aware how much that sounds like the classic "historical documents" line from GALAXY QUEST. smile

But seriously, yes, apparently the music masters for the entire series are indeed lost.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 1:39 PM   
 By:   LRobHubbard   (Member)

I'm still trying to wrap my head that you've NEVER seen GILLIGAN'S ISLAND until now... it's pretty much a rite of passage for Americans who grew up after the 60's...

If memory serves... the pilot ep included in the set didn't include Dawn Wells and Russell Johnson who were added later - and some of the pilot got incorporated into the early episodes (same thing with LOST IN SPACE).

Frank Comstock is known over here for his television scoring -- I believe that John Williams only scored it when it went to series, and his score was used as a library for the remainder of the first season.

Just as an aside to Lukas and the FSM staff... any chance of seeing an FSM release of GILLIGAN'S ISLAND music? Along with LOST IN SPACE and STAR TREK music, Gerald Fried's music is a memorable part of childhood memories in front of the television.

Just read Saul's reply - NUTS!!!

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 1:45 PM   
 By:   Bach-Choi   (Member)

Thor,

The majority of the original pilot was incorporated into the GI Christmas flashback episode, "Birds Gotta Fly, Fish Gotta Talk", pretty much with Williams' score as it was heard in that rejected pilot.

Two early episodes Williams scored, at least partially, were "Goodbye, Island" and "The Big Gold Strike" (the latter sounding similar to stuff he would write the following year for LIS). There may have been more, but those have original cues. Gerald Fried was brought in on a "one-shot" for the Japanese Sailor ep "So Sorry, My Island Now", but was invited back for more, by the start of season two becoming the principal composer for the remainder of the series' run.

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 1:46 PM   
 By:   SchiffyM   (Member)

I'm still trying to wrap my head that you've NEVER seen GILLIGAN'S ISLAND until now... it's pretty much a rite of passage for Americans who grew up after the 60's...

I've never seen a full episode. Wrap your head around that!

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 1:48 PM   
 By:   mark ford   (Member)

I'm still trying to wrap my head that you've NEVER seen GILLIGAN'S ISLAND until now... it's pretty much a rite of passage for Americans who grew up after the 60's...

Now, now, be nice to Thor! He's from Norway so you can't expect him to have had the "American experience" growing up. He had the "Norwegian experience" instead and not many of us here can say that can we! Just an FYI Thor, Gilligan's Island is not really a cult series because it was hugely popular during its original run, very mainstream, so just cut the "cult" part out of the description and you got it (and perhaps replace it with "The goofy but fun"). smile

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 3:02 PM   
 By:   MMM   (Member)

Alas, my wife is a HUGE "Gilligan's Island" fan, but in her defense, it's because reruns of that show helped get her through a very difficult time in her life when she was very young, had an eye operation, and couldn't see when she was in the hospital. So listening to that show every day helped get her mind off things. I can't say that her complete recovery was due to "GI," but I'll let her think so if she wants.

The problem is that when the show came out on DVD, I promised to watch all the episodes with her, and it turned out there were 98 of them! I must admit it was rough going around episode #40 when I realized I still had another 58 to go!

In order to return the favor, my wife promised to watch all the "Adventures of Superman" episodes with me, but this turned out not to be a fair deal, because although there were 104 of them, it turned out that she loved the show, and she now wants to watch all the episodes over again. I guess that's what makes a marriage strong -- give and take.

And you're right -- "Gilligan's Island" is not a cult show. In fact, it's the complete opposite of a cult show, as it's one of the most popular TV programs of all-time.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 3:22 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

Yeah, sorry about that "cult" thing. I guess the whole campiness of the show made me assume that it had more of a kitch appeal than a wide appeal (although I do know it was quite popular over there). But hey, I'm a 31-year-old Norwegian! smile I doubt anyone here has even heard OF GILLIGAN'S ISLAND!

Thor,

The majority of the original pilot was incorporated into the GI Christmas flashback episode, "Birds Gotta Fly, Fish Gotta Talk", pretty much with Williams' score as it was heard in that rejected pilot.

Two early episodes Williams scored, at least partially, were "Goodbye, Island" and "The Big Gold Strike" (the latter sounding similar to stuff he would write the following year for LIS). There may have been more, but those have original cues. Gerald Fried was brought in on a "one-shot" for the Japanese Sailor ep "So Sorry, My Island Now", but was invited back for more, by the start of season two becoming the principal composer for the remainder of the series' run.


Thanks for the input, Bach-Choi. So does that mean that Williams did, in fact, write MORE than just the "lost" pilot score? And also, what was this original pilot about and was it supposed to have preceded the "Two on a Raft" thing? And lastly, is that Christmas Special episode available anywhere (it was hell enough to track down the "Raft" episode!)?

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 3:25 PM   
 By:   Jeff Eldridge   (Member)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gilligan%27s_Island#Pilot_vs._first_broadcast_episode

Williams did score the unaired pilot. He was credited on many episodes during the first season, but I'm not sure if any of them were scored directly by Williams or were merely tracked with music he wrote for the unaired pilot. Perhaps Bach-Choi can clarify: those other episodes he mentions may have Williams cues that don't appear in "Birds Gotta Fly" but the cues in question may have been written for the lost pilot and not used in "Birds."

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 3:47 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

I found this video of the unaired pilot theme on youtube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJZ5YZ4qmD0

However, I assume this crazy calypso tune was not written by Williams, but by the show's creator - like the final theme?

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 3:57 PM   
 By:   MikePetersen   (Member)

I'm a Gilligan's Island die hard fan, and proud of it. As for Williams' many contributions to the first season, listen for his trademark sounds on the episodes "Wrongway Feldman" "The Sound of Quacking" "Water Water Everywhere" and "Big Man on a Little Stick."

Also, that plucky little tune that's used anytime we see Gilligan strolling along the beach -- usually at the beginning of an episode -- is Williams. Not the main theme, but the OTHER tune that identifies Gilligan. If I was with you in person right now I'd hum it for you.

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 4:51 PM   
 By:   Josh Mitchell   (Member)

If I was with you in person right now I'd hum it for you.

Whoa, T.M.I.

eek

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 4:55 PM   
 By:   Steve Johnson   (Member)

NOT Johnny Williams finest hour. Not by a stretch. Feeble. Forgettable. Meh...

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 5:03 PM   
 By:   Josh Mitchell   (Member)

I'm a big Gilligan's Island fan, too, although I had no idea that JW was involved with the series. I think I saw every episode at least several times over the course of my childhood. That's one series I could never get enough of, though it doesn't seem to appear much (if at all) anymore on TV, unfortunately. At least not on the channels we get.

Now, for the most important question of all:

Ginger or Mary Ann?

(or for the ladies and gay men out there)

Gilligan or The Professor?


I've gotta go with Ginger. Mary Ann was sweet and cute, but Ginger was oh so scrumptious. big grin

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 5:13 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

I can't believe that he's never heard of Frank Comstock, who recorded an album that by itself is better than Williams' entire output!

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 5:14 PM   
 By:   TJ   (Member)

The "lost" pilot was found by accident in the 90s by TBS. I learned this on the "Movie Tours" bus in Kauai. smile

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 5:15 PM   
 By:   Steve Johnson   (Member)

If I was on an island with ANY of them, I'd go play with myself. big grin

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 5:17 PM   
 By:   Steve Johnson   (Member)

As long as we are playing that game, Thurston Howell or The Skipper?

Lovie Howell or a monkey in a tree? big grin

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 5:22 PM   
 By:   Bach-Choi   (Member)

Yes. That second GI theme was known as "End Music", as it's the piece used in the end title (but also in the opening) Listen to the opening of "Hogwarts Forever" on HPSC ost and, if you remember the GI show, you'll understand what tune Mike means. I think it was the only Williams theme retained for seasons two and three - and, note, it's almost always employed only for episode introductions and closings.

 
 Posted:   Apr 22, 2009 - 5:24 PM   
 By:   Josh Mitchell   (Member)



"Oh, STEVENJ, you devil! No, no, don't stop. Say, do you think you could teach Mr. Howell how to do that?"

 
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