61. “Ricky Schroder in ‘The Champ.'”

The episode:Time of the Apes,” ep. 306

The riff: Deadpanned by Crow after one of the movie’s protagonist children, a young boy, is reunited with his companions and weeps in their arms.

The explanation: Crow is comparing the kid to the character of “T.J. Flynn,” played by Ricky Schroder in the 1979 remake of “The Champ.” The film stars Jon Voight as a washed-up boxer trying to make a comeback, Faye Dunaway as his estranged wife, and Schroder as his young son who idolizes him. In a tear-jerking ending scene, The Champ is killed in a boxing match as he tries to return to the limelight, leaving T.J. crying over his body and screaming “I want the champ!” It was Schroder’s first movie, and he won the Golden Globe Award for Best New Male Star of the Year at the age of 9.

Novelty factor: I’ve never seen the movie, but “I want the champ!” is familiar. Also, I didn’t know the name Ricky Schroder, but I recognize his face immediately from appearances in “NYPD Blue” and “Scrubs.”


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