From Here to Obscurity Welcome to our tour! Remember, hands and feet inside the tram at all times. Please, no flash photography. Before we begin our journey to home pages of the obscure stars, I'll offer a brief introduction to the tour. You see, ladies and gentlemen, if you look around you'll find the Web littered with shrines to stars and celebrities of all ilk. While the number of Alicia Silverstone pages might be overwhelming, if you consider the Web's demographics, it's understandable. But somewhere among the sites for Winona Ryder and James Dean, you come across a home page for a star that just makes you scratch your head, and mutter, "Why?" For instance, why would someone devote a space on the bandwidth to Karen Allen? "I had been a big fan of hers for many, many years, collecting photos, interviews, videos etc. The Web simply provided me with a good way to 'display' my collection," explains Patrick Spreng the designer of the Allen page. It makes sense when you consider people post the contents of their fridge online. While most of the sites we'll visit on our tour are loving tributes to overlooked actors, some have higher purposes. Harrison Cheung, the creator of the Christian Bale site, actually corresponds with Bale monthly. Cheung thinks his site will eventually boost Bale's career: His audience is young and very computer literate. Given that (Bale) doesn't get much traditional publicity, the home page functions as a resource for fans, the press and casting agents. Well, you didn't pay to hear me talk all day. Let's get on with our tour. I believe our first home page is coming up on the left. Once again, let me remind you no flash photography.

Karen Allen Who: Karen Allen
Irony Factor: There is no Kate Capshaw site.
Most Famous For: Playing Indy's love interest, Marion Ravenwood, in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Little Known Fact: In the early '70s she drove from Mexico to Peru with friends who were filming a documentary about South American Indians.
Site Highlight: Questions I Would Ask Karen Allen If I Got the Chance (example: "Do you still have problems with your vision?")

As if anyone questioned Karen Allen's downward career path, the actress has gone from starring in Animal House with John Belushi to starring in a CD-ROM with Jimmie Walker. This site is actually quite good, with meticulously detailed pages, dozens of photos, and lots of links, but all this work for the star of Ghost in the Machine? Well, at least Karen probably appreciates the adoration, right? A direct quote after the author gives her address: "Note that, while I have sent her several fan letters over the past five years, I have never received any response. Let me know if you do!"

Christian Bale

Who: Christian Bale
Irony Factor: Watch his changing hair over the years.
Most Famous For: His starring role in Steven Spielberg's Empire of the Sun.
Little Known Fact: "Christian will not eat anything sentient."
Site Highlight: The Christian FAQ.

Christian is a well-respected young actor and all that, but he's still a mite obscure to merit a fan home page. With his next two projects being adaptations of literary classics by James and Conrad, Christian's home page is probably the most mainstream exposure he can expect to get.

Abraham Benrubi Who: Abraham Benrubi
Site: tedlewis/benrubi.html
Irony Factor: The clearest photo at the site is to the left.
Most Famous For: His current role as Jerry in NBC's ER.
Little Known Fact: Benrubi's middle name is Hercules.
Site Highlight: Those pictures of Benrubi being drawn and quartered in Wagons East (at right).

Granted ER is the most popular TV show in the known universe at the moment, but a home page for Benrubi? I mean, I can understand home pages for George Clooney or Noah Wyle, but Benrubi? To each his own.

Roddy McDowall Who: Roddy McDowall
Irony Factor: Rodney Dangerfield's site blows this away (See IU #1, page 67).
Most Famous For: Cornelius from Planet of the Apes.
Little Known Fact: Roddy has co-starred with a dog, cat and horse.
Site Highlight: The Lord Love a Duck wallpaper.

The site, though mostly under construction, still offers a wide variety of pictures of Roddy (though sadly none in his chimpanzee makeup).

Erin Grey Who: Erin Gray
Irony Factor: She has a site; Gil Gerard doesn't.
Most Famous For: A toss-up between her star turns in Buck Rogers in the 25th Century and Silver Spoons.
Little Known Fact: She was once a spokesmodel for English Leather.
Site Highlight: Seemingly it would be the 30+ pictures of Erin, if I could get them to load faster.

By listing Erin's complete film/TV listings you can trace her career from Buck Rogers to Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday. Gray was a model, so the site likely includes hot GIFs. It seems that Gray merits a home page for starring in Buck Rogers, putting her into the cyberbabe arena along with Gillian Anderson, Teri Hatcher and every woman who's ever been on Star Trek.

Kristy McNichol Who: Kristy McNichol
and ~grushka/Kristy/index.html
Irony Factor: There's not an Empty Nest site.
Most Famous For: Letitia "Buddy" Lawrence on Family.
Little Known Fact: In a 1982 Teen Bag interview Kristy said the most memorable country she's ever visited was Hawaii.
Site Highlight: The aforementioned interview transcript.

Not just one, but two sites for every mid-'70s adolescents' dream date. Apparently Kristy has suffered from personal problems over the last couple of years, yet both pages' authors seem to know very little about her current status other than the fact she did appear on the finale of Empty Nest. If you have any Kristy info please pass it on to her die-hard fans.

Ami Dolenz Who: Ami Dolenz
Site: ~mwade/ami_dolenz.html
Irony Factor: None, but her name spans the alphabet
Most Famous For: Being Mickey Dolenz's daughter
Little Known Fact: Everything about her is "little known"
Site Highlight: The author actually has a TV Guide to her appearances, mostly late at night on cable TV each month.

Obscure is a compliment to the star of Pumpkinhead II: Blood Wings (also starring Soleil Moon Frye!), White Wolves: A Cry in the Wild II (also starring Mark Paul Gosselaar!) and Witchboard II: The Devil's Doorway (also starring Laraine Newman!). The Point ranked this site in the top 5 percent of the Web. Personally, this makes me question my faith in their judgment.

Farrah Forke Who: Farrah Forke
Irony Factor: Like her series, her site has been canceled.
Most Famous For: Two seasons on Wings.
Little Known Fact: Her last name is pronounced "For-key."
Site Highlight: The honest and forthright manner in which the site deals with the cancellation of Farrah's latest sitcom, Dweebs.

Adoration for a B-level, albeit an attractive B-level, sitcom star. Whatever.

Angus Scrimm Who: Angus Scrimm
Site: hpages/SCRIMM_bio.html
Irony Factor: His name alone is scary.
Most Famous For: Playing the Tall Man in the Phantasm trilogy.
Little Known Fact: He has "written liner notes for thousands of LPs and CDs for everyone from Frank Sinatra and The Beatles to Arthur Rubinstein and Itzhak Perlman."
Site Highlight: The exclusive quotes from Scrimm such as his response to the possibility of a fourth Phantasm: "Tell them, I haven't hung up the old balls yet!"

He may or may not be obscure to horror- film buffs, but we have to admit we were hard pressed to recall the Phantasm films, much less old Angus himself. Maybe because of this, the site lists some of his other film roles such as the memorable Dr. Sin Do and Vlad the Vampire King.

Pamela Franklin Who: Pamela Franklin
Irony Factor: People might find it looking for Bonnie, star of One Day At A Time.
Most Famous For: Let's put it this way: If you can place her name with a role, you win.
Little Known Fact: Of her first eight roles, five had animals in the titles: Eagle in a Cage, Flipper and the Pirates, A Tiger Walks, The Horse Without a Head and The Lion.
Site Highlight: The page dedicated to her beloved film, The Legend of Hell House, in which she stars with another animal lover, Roddy McDowall (see his stop earlier on the tour).

If you opened up the dictionary and looked under obscure, you probably wouldn't find Pamela's picture, but that's less a testament to her obscurity and more to the fact dictionaries, despite the popular clichÈ, usually only have pictures for words that are nouns, not adjectives.

That concludes our tour of the home pages of the obscure stars.
I hope you enjoyed your visit.
Exit to the right and have a good day!

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