Joe Fallon (again)

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Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Nope on Fri Jul 04, 2014 6:03 pm

Whew... nothing like pulling an all-nighter, then ensuring not to oversleep the afternoon for Arthur! Just like old times...

I caught some "classic" Arthur episodes today, this time hailing from the 4th season.
It is no surprise at least two of these were written by the much-vaunted writer Joe Fallon.

I understand Joe Fallon left the show at some point just before or during Season 5 over a creative conflict with Marc Brown.
What I don't know is exactly what lead to this split-up - I imply that it might have happened during Season 5 as his Crazy Bus song was still used in a couple episodes ("Double Dare", "Arthur's Family Feud", and the Christmas special). When he departed, the rights to play Crazy Bus went with him. He would have had royalty payments for each time the song was used, and with Fallon leaving the show it would have been impossible to keep this deal with him. This is why you don't hear that wretched wonderful song in newer episodes. It is unfortunate that he left the show, though it seems uncharacteristic for such a dispute to crop up against Brown - he seems a friendly chap from what I've seen. I can say for a fact that Mr. Fallon was long gone by the time Season 6 began development - he is not credited anywhere, nor is there any mention of him still working on the show. This would seem to go with the different style of writing prevalent in this season - more episodes dedicated to token issues and less wacky humor. To some point, the rise of token episodes goes back to Season 4 which revealed Buster to have asthma. Then there's the Lice episode during Season 5 which was pushed by Carol Greenwald (producer). Perhaps Joe didn't take to this well? It's only a guess as this was the biggest change towards the end of his term on the job.

Not much is known about him - apparently he hails from Los Angeles and has worked on other shows including Doug and Curious George. Nothing turns up in the way of contact information or an official site - I guess he's one of those "underground" writers. Where-ever he is, I trust he knows how much we all appreciate his work on the show. It'd be neat to track him down for an interview of sorts, but I'd hate to bring up potential sore wounds given the nature of his departure from Arthur.

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by GrebeGoddess on Fri Jul 04, 2014 8:52 pm

At some point somebody has to ask him about Crazy Bus. I especially want to know if he really did write it while sitting on the toilet one day (check out the intro to Season 5's "Double Dare")  Laughing 
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by BionicBunny on Sat Jul 05, 2014 10:56 am

You know JAO,I bet that's the truth,that Joe left the show because his "creative dispute" with Marc Brown was over how the show was drifting into moral of the week/disease of the week/disability of the week territory.Would Fallon be able to even work with a setup like that? Maybe he decided that the new direction wasn't for him and left.

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by GrebeGoddess on Sat Jul 05, 2014 1:15 pm

I found his LinkedIn page, but it looks like he's completely inactive on it.

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/joe-fallon/3a/450/354

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by BionicBunny on Sat Jul 05, 2014 4:16 pm

He seems to want his privacy,which I'm respectful of.

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by MarleyandPal96 on Sun Jul 06, 2014 1:35 pm

Joe Fallon was a WACKY writer. Only he could make Arthur like Doug Funnie (which the book designs were hinting already). Crazy Bus is wacky, one guy made countless varations on youtube of "Play it Again, D.W."!


He ranks with Phil Harnage from DiC (now DHX)!

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Kerry9Story on Tue Jul 08, 2014 7:55 am

retired mabbe?
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by BionicBunny on Fri Jul 11, 2014 10:44 am

Nah,he still writes some for PBS shows.

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Rummy on Sat Jul 12, 2014 12:43 am

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by A Lotta Moms on Sat Jul 12, 2014 3:15 am

It's good to know that they at least managed to salvage the upper part of his body after that nasty run-in at the blockade.
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Rummy on Sat Jul 12, 2014 1:16 pm

We have yet to place his preserved brain inside a robot to create a Cyjorge.
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by squid on Sun Jul 13, 2014 7:41 am

Right, Joe Fallon IS wacky.

Great, now that I've been marked as the last post on all of the boards as of 6:40a, there will be good times and much rejoicing.
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Snowth Poogle on Mon Aug 25, 2014 10:50 pm

I've heard rumors that Joe got caught up in that whole tax fraud scandal that Cinar got busted on, where a number of Cinar employees were being passed off as Canadian citizens for tax purposes... and of course, Joe being from Los Angeles, isn't a Canadian citizen.

Or, at least, that's what I heard... didn't Greg Bailey disprove that at ECC?

Either way, when ARTHUR lost Joe, that was probably the hardest blow the series took... it's like in the early 90s when SESAME STREET started losing its original key creative people like Jim Henson, Joe Raposo, and Jon Stone - who to SESAME STREET like Joe Fallon was to ARTHUR.

I often find that many of my favorite episodes of any show tend to be written by certain writers (like M*A*S*H for example, I find many of my favorite episodes were written by the team of Ken Levine & David Isaacs), and with ARTHUR, most of my favorite episodes, of course, were written by Joe; I think he was the one who really captured the essence of the characters and their interactions with each other the best... in a sense, he really was the true creative maestro of the show. I believe Peter K. Hirsch comes in second; his episodes are almost on the same level of quality as Joe's were, and seeing that he's still writing today is a nice sign in seeing that there's still a few of older creative staff still involved with the show.

I looked at his IMDb page the other day, and like BB said, he's also written for other PBS Kids shows, and he seems to stick with children's shows with ensemble characters (the original Nickelodeon version of DOUG, BETWEEN THE LIONS, etc.) Looks like his most recent writing venture was a holiday special for CURIOUS GEORGE.

I wouldn't mind if he ever wrote for me sometime; he seems to always really get real in tune with characters.

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Kerry9Story on Tue Aug 26, 2014 12:12 am

fired i bet then.
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by BionicBunny on Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:04 pm

Snowth Poogle wrote:I've heard rumors that Joe got caught up in that whole tax fraud scandal that Cinar got busted on, where a number of Cinar employees were being passed off as Canadian citizens for tax purposes... and of course, Joe being from Los Angeles, isn't a Canadian citizen.

Or, at least, that's what I heard... didn't Greg Bailey disprove that at ECC?

Either way, when ARTHUR lost Joe, that was probably the hardest blow the series took... it's like in the early 90s when SESAME STREET started losing its original key creative people like Jim Henson, Joe Raposo, and Jon Stone - who to SESAME STREET like Joe Fallon was to ARTHUR.

I often find that many of my favorite episodes of any show tend to be written by certain writers (like M*A*S*H for example, I find many of my favorite episodes were written by the team of Ken Levine & David Isaacs), and with ARTHUR, most of my favorite episodes, of course, were written by Joe; I think he was the one who really captured the essence of the characters and their interactions with each other the best... in a sense, he really was the true creative maestro of the show. I believe Peter K. Hirsch comes in second; his episodes are almost on the same level of quality as Joe's were, and seeing that he's still writing today is a nice sign in seeing that there's still a few of older creative staff still involved with the show.

I looked at his IMDb page the other day, and like BB said, he's also written for other PBS Kids shows, and he seems to stick with children's shows with ensemble characters (the original Nickelodeon version of DOUG, BETWEEN THE LIONS, etc.) Looks like his most recent writing venture was a holiday special for CURIOUS GEORGE.

I wouldn't mind if he ever wrote for me sometime; he seems to always really get real in tune with characters.
Well,seeing how the show's scripts are written at WGBH in Boston,I'd kinda doubt that Joe ever worked for Cinar.

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by 磁計算機騎士 on Wed Aug 27, 2014 3:10 am

Here is the exact post: http://elwoodcitycentral.createaforum.com/new-board/joe-fallon/msg746/#msg746
quote-I know around the same time Cinar got busted for that tax fraud scandal is when former head writer Joe Fallon also walked away from the show (some speculate they had to let him go, as he was among those "foreigners" being passed as Canadian citizens, as he is originally from Los Angeles); I also know that because of that, they dropped "Crazy Bus" as D.W.'s favorite song, because it was Fallon who not only wrote the song, but performed the vocals as well.[/i]

I want to clarify a point in the note above because it sounds scandalous.

The writers on Arthur still are and have always been mostly American citizens. The are not hired by Cinar/Cookie Jar/9Story so they would not have been dismissed by Cinar.  Joe nor any of the writers on Arthur were implicated in the Cinar scandal and the scandal didn't apply to Arthur anyway because it never qualified as a Canadian production. You can't a have a co production with an American company to qualify. Anyway it was a sad day when Joe left because he was such a great writer. He  left because of conflict that he had with Marc Brown. Joe left the show a  year or so  before any news of tax fraud at Cinar came up.

Peter Hirsch is American and has been the head writer on the series since Joe left the job.

Ken Scarborough was the first head writer. Both Ken and Joe came over from Doug to start up the Arthur series.

Crazy Bus was dropped at one point because you need to pay a royalty on music like that everytime you use it. Since Joe was the head writer then there is a point when adding it to the scipt becomes a conflict of interest. Though I believe the song was even used once after Joe had left the show.


Last edited by 磁計算機騎士 on Thu Aug 13, 2015 2:42 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Snowth Poogle on Wed Aug 27, 2014 11:33 am

I somehow overlooked that post, or I didn't read the whole thing, but tis a real shame. Tsk.

Makes me wonder though just what went down between Marc and Joe? I can kinda imagine it may have gotten a little messy: Marc is, first and foremost, the true creator of Arthur and all of his friends, but again, Joe really was the one who was able to adapt their characters and personalities from page to screen better than anybody.

So I take it "Crazy Bus" wasn't written specifically for the show, and was simply a nonsensical song that Joe wrote at one point or another in his career and it was somehow incorporated into the show?

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by BionicBunny on Wed Aug 27, 2014 3:51 pm

Marc seems too friendly for something ugly to happen,I imagine he left of his own accord when they started to drift into Disease of the Week territory in Season 4.

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Snowth Poogle on Wed Aug 27, 2014 4:15 pm

You never really know. Jim Henson was very much like a father figure to just about all who worked for him, though sometime in the 70s, he fired his producer because of creative differences (they didn't see eye-to-eye on some of his projects). Interestingly though, he hired her again later in the 80s and she continued to producer or executive produce his work up till his death.

Sometimes I do wonder though, what would ARTHUR be like today if Joe was still working on it?

Off topic, but I think it's really interesting that David Steven Cohen is writing for ARTHUR now, as he was the head writer of COURAGE THE COWARDLY DOG, which I loved as a kid (and I'm psyched about the new short coming out in October along with Season 2 on DVD)!

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by A Lotta Moms on Wed Aug 27, 2014 9:14 pm

I initially wondered if the dispute arose from Joe trying to make the show more witty and teenage-oriented than Marc Brown might have wanted it, but if you look at the earlier Arthur books, you find a lot of the same sort of humor coming from Brown himself here and there.  It may have just as likely been over business-related matters such as salary, work load, contract terms, creative control, etc.
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by BionicBunny on Thu Aug 28, 2014 3:45 pm

That could be Mabbe.

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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

Post by Kerry9Story on Fri Aug 29, 2014 6:20 am

fired prolly.
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Re: Joe Fallon (again)

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