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Television pilot

A television pilot is a standalone episode of a television series, used to sell the show to a television network. At the time of its creation, the pilot is meant to be the testing ground to gauge whether a series will be successful, it is, therefore, a test episode for the intended television series, an early step in the series development, much like pilot studies serve as precursors to the start of larger activity. In the case of a successful television series, the pilot is the first episode, aired of the particular series under its own name. A "backdoor pilot" is an episode of an existing successful series, featuring future tie-in characters of an up-and-coming television series or film, its purpose is to introduce the characters to an audience before the creators decide on whether or not they intend to pursue a spin-off series with those characters. Television networks use pilots to determine whether an entertaining concept can be realized and whether the expense of additional episodes is justified.

A pilot is best thought of as a prototype of the show, to follow, because elements change from pilot to series. Variety estimates that only a little over a quarter of all pilots made for American television proceed to the series stage. Most pilots are never publicly screened; each summer, the major American broadcast television networks – including ABC, CBS, The CW, NBC – receive about 500 brief elevator pitches each for new shows from writers and producers. That fall, each network requests scripts for about 70 pitches and, the following January, orders about 20 pilot episodes. Actors come to Los Angeles from within the area or elsewhere in the United States and around the world to audition for them. By spring, actors are production crews assembled to produce the pilots. Casting is a lengthy and competitive process. For the 1994 pilot of Friends, casting director Ellie Kanner reviewed more than 1,000 actors' head shots for each of the six main roles, she summoned 75 actors for each role to audition chose some to audition again for the show's creators.

Of this group, the creators chose some to audition again for Warner Bros. Television executives, who chose the final group of a few actors to audition for NBC executives. Since the networks work on the same shared schedule, directors and others must choose the best pilot to work for with the hopes that the network will choose it. If it is not chosen, they have wasted their time and money and may have missed out on better career opportunities. Once they have been produced, the pilots are presented to studio and network executives, in some cases to test audiences. Using this feedback, factoring in the current status and future potential of their existing series, each network chooses about four to eight pilots for series status; the new series are presented at the networks' annual upfronts in May, where they are added to network schedules for the following season, at the upfront presentation, the shows are shown to potential advertisers and the networks sell the majority of the advertising for their new pilots.

The survival odds for these new series are low, as only one or two of them survive for more than one season. If a network is not sold on a potential series' premise but still wants to see its on-screen execution, since a single pilot can be expensive to produce, a pilot presentation may be ordered. Depending on the potential series' nature, a pilot presentation is a one-day shoot that, when edited together, gives a general idea of the look and feel of the proposed show. Presentations are between seven and ten minutes. However, these pilot-presentations will not be shown on the air unless more material is subsequently added to them to make them at least 22 or 45 minutes in length, the actual duration of a nominally "30 minute" or "60 minute" television program. More than one pilot is commissioned for a particular proposed television series to evaluate what the show would be like with modifications. Star Trek: The Original Series and All in the Family are famous examples of this presentation-to-pilot-to-series situation.

An example of change between the making of a pilot and the making of a series is To Tell the Truth in 1956. The show's original title at pilot was Nothing But the Truth and was hosted by Mike Wallace. Pilots run as the first episode of the series, more than not are used to introduce the characters and their world to the viewer. However, the post-pilot series may become so different that it would not make sense for the pilot to be aired. In this case, the pilot is re-shot, recast, or rewritten to fit the rest of the series; the pilot for Gilligan's Island, for instance, showed the castaways becoming stranded on the island. However, three roles were recast before going to series, with the characters either modified or altered to the point where the pilot could no longer be used as a regular episode; as a result, CBS aired Gilligan's second produced episode, which had the characters stranded on the island, first.

Angel in Your Arms

"Angel in Your Arms" is a song composed by Herbert Clayton Ivey, Terrence Woodford and Tom Brasfield, a 1977 Top Ten hit for Hot and a Top Ten C&W 1985 hit for Barbara Mandrell. The song is about a woman who advises an unfaithful mate: "The angel in your arms this morning is gonna be the devil in someone else's arms tonight", meaning that she has assuaged his neglect and infidelities by indulging in illicit trysts of her own. Although "Angel in Your Arms" belongs to the tradition of cheating songs prevalent in C&W music, the song was introduced by pop/R&B act Hot on their self-titled debut album, recorded 1976 at Wishbone Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama with Wishbone's owners Clayton Ivey and Terrence Woodford producing, it was Hot's lead singer Gwen Owens who requested the group be given a C&W song, Ivey and Woodford obliged with "Angel in Your Arms" whose third co-writer was Muscle Shoals resident Tom/Tommy Brasfield. Although Hot was a trio consisting of Owens, Cathy Carson and Juanita Curiel, Owens has stated that she recorded "Angel in Your Arms" with only Carson as background vocalist as Irene Cathaway, with whom Owens and Carson had been performing and, expected to record with them at Muscle Shoals, was a no-show at the recording studio, "Angel in Your Arms" was recorded prior to the recruitment of Curiel as Cathaway's replacement.

Ivey played keyboards on Hot's recording of "Angel in Your Arms", which featured Mac McAnally on guitar. Picked up by Big Tree Records, "Angel in Your Arms" accrued sufficient airplay to by February 1977 to enter the Billboard Hot 100, entering the Pop Top 40 that April to peak that July at #6. Billboard ranked it as the No. 5 song for 1977. Certified a gold record for U. S. sales of one million units, "Angel in Your Arms" was a hit for Hot in Australia and New Zealand. At the time of Hot's success with their single version, the group recorded a Spanish-language version entitled "Angel en Tus Brazos"; the success of Hot with "Angel in Your Arms" brought an expedient cover aimed at the C&W market by Vivian Bell, a March 1977 release which failed to become a major hit with a #71 C&W peak. Robin Lee recorded "Angel in Your Arms" in late 1982, the track serving as B-side of her inaugural single release "Turning Back the Covers": the single was re-released December 1982 with "Angel in Your Arms" as the A-side and as such more successful though still not a major hit with a #54 C&W peak.

"Angel in Your Arms" subsequently served as the B-side for two single releases by Lee: "I Heard It on the Radio" and the duet with Lobo: "Paint the Town Blue". Barbara Mandrell, who had scored a 1982 #1 C&W hit with Brasfield's "Till You're Gone", recorded "Angel in Your Arms" in June 1985 in Nashville to serve as an advance single from the album Get to the Heart, marking the first newly recorded release by Mandrell after her 11 September 1984 automobile accident. A thematic return by Mandrell to the connubial concerns prevalent in her early hits, including her 1978 career record " I Don't Want to Be Right", "Angel in Your Arms" reached #8 C&W. "Angel in Your Arms" has been recorded by Lynn Anderson, Red Hurley, Millie Jackson, Reba McEntire, Billie Jo Spears. In the UK, where the Hot original had had an unsuccessful April 1977 release, "Angel in the Morning" was recorded in 1979 by veteran vocalist Carol Deene, inactive for some years: Deene's version, released on her own Koala label, failed to effect a chart comeback.

"Angel in Your Arms" was one of a number of tracks recorded in the spring of 2009 at Muscle Shoals Sound Studio by Queen Emily. The Queen Emily album was released in the UK in December 2010. A Finnish rendering: "Älä Kysy Kuka On Sylissäin", was recorded by Vicky for her 1978 album Tee Mulle Niin

Rally Monkey

The Rally Monkey is the unofficial mascot for the Los Angeles Angels Major League Baseball team. The character debuted on June 6, 2000, when the Angels were trailing the San Francisco Giants 5–4 in the bottom of the ninth inning. Two video board operators, Dean Fraulino and Jaysen Humes, took a clip of a monkey jumping around from the 1994 Jim Carrey movie comedy Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, superimposed the words "RALLY MONKEY!" on top of it. The Angels won the game; the video clip proved to be so popular that the team hired Katie, a white-haired capuchin monkey who appeared as Marcel in the television sitcom Friends, to star in original clips for games. When seen, she bounces to the House of Pain song "Jump Around" and sometimes holds a sign proclaiming that it is "RALLY TIME!"The rally monkey came to national and world-wide attention during the Angels' appearance in the 2002 World Series, again against the San Francisco Giants. In the sixth game, the Angels were playing at home, but were trailing the series 3-2 and facing elimination.

They were down 5-0 as the game entered the bottom of the seventh inning. Amid fervid rally-monkey themed fan support, the Angels proceeded to score six unanswered runs over the next two innings, winning the game and turning the momentum of the series for good. In 2009, the Angels once again reached the post-season, sparking a renewal of the rally monkey's popularity. Additional videos featuring the Rally Monkey show her edited into popular films and TV shows such as The Brady Bunch Movie, Jurassic Park, Field of Dreams, Star Trek, Risky Business, WarGames, Animal House; the Angels started selling plush monkeys. ESPN did a SportsCenter commercial in which it showed one of the executives having to make "budget cuts," leading to the release of the monkey; the monkey pleaded by raising the "It's Rally Time" sign. In one installment of the popular comic strip Get Fuzzy, the strip's protagonist, Bucky Katt, attempts to travel to Anaheim to eat the Rally Monkey after seeing it on television, as part of a running gag focused on Bucky's irrational desire to eat a monkey.

Rally Squirrel Rat Trick