Quibbles & Bits

. . . Color commentary: In analyzing figure skater Debi Thomas' performance that won her first place at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, ABC's Jim McKay ventured that Thomas, who is black, had a "street smart" feel for the music. Like those mean streets of Stanford U., where Thomas matriculated?

. . . With Gary Franklin away, KABC Talk Radio brought in "guest critic" Stu Nahan. Film historians take note: the sportscaster gave "Moonstruck" a "9 3/4" on "the Nahan scale."

. . . "A prominent director of TV movies takes his first crack at the world of features with 'Sweet Hearts Dance' and gives us a view from both sides of the fence." So blurbs Premiere mag with Robert Greenwald's article, "Do TV Directors Do It Better?" Greenwald ("The Burning Bed," "Centerfold") notes that "in theatrical films, it's no secret that obscene amounts of money are often wasted"--and brags of bringing in his Tri-Star pic "$780,000 under budget and five days ahead of schedule." First feature? Economical shooting? What about Greenwald's real first feature--1980's megabudget megabomb, "Xanadu"?

. . . Viewer's Choice, a pay-per-view station, is giving away "Ishtar" this month--showing it unscrambled.

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