MBTA in other media (ex-MBTA in the movies)

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Re: MBTA in other media (ex-MBTA in the movies)

Postby MTD » Tue Jan 26, 2010 1:57 pm

3rdrail wrote:Anybody mention that old TV show "Charles in Charge". I remember seeing the pilot of that one in 1977. It showed a young guy striking out on his own and travelling throughout the MBTA of that time. I remember extensive shots, particularly at Park Street Station....


I firmly believe you are referring to the 1977-78 NBC series James at 15, not Charles in Charge which was a 1980s show and never had any Boston scenes. The intro here on YouTube from James shows the production was made in the city, at least the outdoor locations. I do remember that one scene in the pilot that James (the title character) travelled all over the T's rapid transit system, starting at the Green Line's Park Street station. It was a lengthy montage, where, if you were a Boston viewer, you knew James got totally lost and almost became the modern day "Charlie!" I think Paul, thats what you may be remembering.
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Re: MBTA in other media (ex-MBTA in the movies)

Postby 3rdrail » Tue Jan 26, 2010 3:48 pm

I think that you're right, MTD. It probably was James at 15. I went to Youtube to see if I might catch some of the MBTA footage, which as you stated was pretty extensive. I did realize in watching a couple of clips was that if you seek this out, it is the pilot for the show that had this stuff in it, and a regular series that was produced afterwards probably did not. It showed the MBTA of @ 1976, as I remember vividly sitting in a Waterville, Maine motel (long story) and watching it in 1977. Thanks for rattling my fuzzy brain.

Another one that is one of my favorite old-time movies is 1950's Mystery Street with Ricardo Montalban and Sally Forrest. It's a murder mystery following the discovery of the skeleton of a murdered woman down the Cape. There is a lot of Boston locale and in the final chase scene, the bad guy is chased by Ricardo through the old Trinity Station and the B&A Yard. On top of the great RR and City footage, it is a very engaging movie as well. I purchased my DVD copy very cheaply which was packaged with Act of Violence, another good flick.
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Re: MBTA in other media (ex-MBTA in the movies)

Postby 3rdrail » Wed Jan 27, 2010 12:26 am

I watched Mystery Street again tonight and enjoyed it even more the second time. There are numerous local scenes, one of which shows in the distance in Harvard Square what looks to me like an MTA Type 4, P/S Trolley Bus, and Mack bus. The scene at the end of the movie was filmed inside Trinity Place Station with rest room and baggage claim area in detail. Following that is an extended foot pursuit that winds through the old Exeter Street Yard, where the Boston and Albany serviced their passenger equipment and made up trains for runs out of South Station. It's no longer there, having been done in by the Pike and the Pru. It's borders were Boylston/Exeter/Huntington/Dalton. Here, there are yard scenes of wheels on axles in storage, the yard itself, a yard switcher, and inside and outside various B&A and Pullman cars. The killer is ultimately arrested inside a B&A baggage car.
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This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby Ricky Smith » Sat Apr 17, 2010 12:46 am

Anyone watch this show and see their version of the MBTA? Thought it was interesting.
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby jamesinclair » Sat Apr 17, 2010 3:15 am

Season 1 featured "South Station".

It looked like a tiny shack station somewhere in metro north land. Pretty embarrassing.

(The show was filmed in the NYC area, now it's in Toronto I think, it has never filmed in Boston)
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby blackcap » Sat Apr 17, 2010 6:06 am

Those cars remind me of the old Budds... nothing like what's rolling on the real CR these days.
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby Hoopyfrood » Sat Apr 17, 2010 8:37 am

Those do look like Budds, so they could at least have thrown a B&M logo on them instead for accuracy... :wink:
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby Type7trolley » Sat Apr 17, 2010 8:45 am

http://www.hulu.com/watch/139644/fringe-white-tulip#x-0,vepisode,1,0
Here is the episode if anyone wants to see it. The only grain of MBTA truth I see is that they announce Orange and Silver line connections at Back Bay, but even that is now called "Boston Bay". Oh well. :P
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby madcrow » Sat Apr 17, 2010 10:02 am

My guess is that they didn't want to pay the T whatever money it would have taken to license the T logo, so they just made up their own. Still, stuff like this makes the show almost unwatchable for some of us who actually live in Boston because its so laughably wrong.
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby typesix » Sat Apr 17, 2010 10:10 am

Fringe films in Vancouver(formerly New York), which would account for the equipment looking like Budds. The cars are likely from VIA Rail, VIA likes the old Budds. Fringe is supposed to take place in Boston and occasionally there will be a recognizable building.
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby 3rdrail » Sat Apr 17, 2010 12:01 pm

You guys realize that 99.999999999 % of the audience will think that it was all filmed in Boston using our RR Facilities and equipment, sighing as they do so about "Beantown". (Have you ever heard anyone from Boston call it Beantown ?)
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby typesix » Sat Apr 17, 2010 2:35 pm

Fringe wasn't too bad with the trains. Recently the show Bones had an incident involving the Washington Metro, the opening showed the Metro but a crash scene showed a BART car being swept away by water. The X-Files had a Boston episode involving subways and indicated that the mayor of Boston was in charge of the system. Ally McBeal always showed Red Line cars on the Longfellow Bridge. I think St. Elsewhere may have had shots of the EL, as it was meant to be modeled near Boston City Hospital.
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby jamesinclair » Sat Apr 17, 2010 2:51 pm

madcrow wrote:My guess is that they didn't want to pay the T whatever money it would have taken to license the T logo, so they just made up their own. Still, stuff like this makes the show almost unwatchable for some of us who actually live in Boston because its so laughably wrong.


Remember, not a single scene in the two seasons has been filmed in Massachusetts. It has been filmed in Toronto and New York (and possibly Vancouver too).

Besides, they wouldnt even have to pay the T to use the T logo....they could pay Norway!
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby jbn7474 » Sat Apr 17, 2010 3:45 pm

I think the best show that featured alot of Boston transit in their scenes was Spencer for Hire. That show for its time was top notch with filming and production. I remember in the first season they had lots of action scenes of Spencer's mustang whipping in and out of the Washington street El. And the pilot episode starts with a cab ride over the Longfellow bridge in a set of the old Pullman cars. I recently found that series on AOL television and was nice to watch some old Boston footage.
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Re: This past weeks Fringe Episode

Postby madcrow » Sat Apr 17, 2010 3:50 pm

jamesinclair wrote:
madcrow wrote:My guess is that they didn't want to pay the T whatever money it would have taken to license the T logo, so they just made up their own. Still, stuff like this makes the show almost unwatchable for some of us who actually live in Boston because its so laughably wrong.


Remember, not a single scene in the two seasons has been filmed in Massachusetts. It has been filmed in Toronto and New York (and possibly Vancouver too).

Besides, they wouldnt even have to pay the T to use the T logo....they could pay Norway!

I'm pretty sure the T logo is a trademark of T and thus its use in a TV show would need to be paid for or otherwise negotiated. As for the show not being filmed in Boston, I already knew that: the pilot was shot in Toronto and the show itself is show in NYC. But the fact that the show isn't actually shot here doesn't mean that they can't at least try to do a better job of faking it. The fact that they DON'T even try to fake it makes the show almost unwatchable to me.
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