Darren McGavin, We Miss You

June 26, 2009 at 3:53 am (Meanderings, Nerd stuff, SciFi) (, , , , , )

“I promised I’d show up with a haircut, a new hat, and pressed suit… but I lie a lot.” — Carl Kolchak

Kolchak faces down a vampire!

Kolchak faces down a vampire!

I didn’t actually see Kolchak the Night Stalker, starring Darren McGavin when it first ran in the 1970s. I was a bit young for it.  I did catch it later, though, on the Sci-Fi channel.  I got interested in seeing the show after Chris Carter mentioned that it was one of his inspirations for the X-Files. Later, when the entire show (which was sadly, cancelled after one season) became available on DVD, I purchased the  box set.

I have gotten quite a lot of enjoyment out of watching the episodes over and over again, although there are a few that I tend to enjoy more than others (I think the first two-the jack the Ripper episode and the zombie episode are my favorites).  As it seems to be a time honored tradition with cult classic style TV shows, I began to ponder whether or not there was a Kolchak related drinking game. My scientifically conducted internet research 10 seconds of Google searching showed that this didn’t appear to be the case.  Since that definitely needed to be remedied, I present to you, forthwith, my official Kolchak the Nightstalker drinking game. Of course, we all know that drinking is dangerous and sinful. You can play this game with soda pop, chocolate milk,  plain old water, or other…imbibables.  Whatever suits you.  Personally I don’t drink anymore, so this is purely a mental exercise.  (Just smile and nod with me here.)

How to Play

If you don’t have a copy of the boxed set of the series, get one. It’s not that expensive.  Pop in the DVD, take hold of your favorite intoxicant (or some chocolate milk), and imbibe as follows for each event.

One drink

  • Kolchak and Vincenzo get into an argument.
  • Kolchak asks snide questions at a police press conference.
  • Kolchak’s camera and/or tape recorder gets confiscated/broken.
  • Vincenzo rips the article Kolchak is working on out of his typewriter while Kolchak is actually typing it.
  • Carl’s voiceover announces someone’s death in a dramatic way. For example—“She wanted to be a famous masseuse…she should have settled for being alive!”
  • Kolchak walks out of the office to pursue a story in the middle of the day over Vincenzo’s protestations.
  • Updike makes an appearance.
  • Kolchak uses a  library book on some obscure occult topic with cool esoteric pictures to explain whatever supernatural event is occurring. (The person(s) he is explaining to dismisses it, of course.)
  • Kolchak goes out after the monster by himself, gets scared, and runs away screaming like a little girl (usually to great comedic effect).

Two drinks

  • Carl mispronounces Updike’s name as Uptight.
  • Kolchak’s hat is disparaged, stepped on, run over, etc.
  • Vincenzo has to bail Kolchak out of jail.
  • Vincenzo has indigestion.
  • Miss Emily makes an appearance.
  • Monique makes an appearance.
  • Kolchak’s photos don’t come out.

Three drinks

  • You can see the zipper on the monster’s costume.
  • Kolchak makes a sudden u-turn in his big convertible after he hears something on the police scanner.
  • A cop is actually nice to Kolchak.
  • Gordie the Ghoul makes an appearance.

Can you think of any more?  Leave them in the comments.


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