Rare Book Monthly

Articles - May - 2005 Issue

Stacked: The Bookshop Makes It To TV!

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Pamela Anderson is the subject of this National Enquirer biography


By Michael Stillman

The bookshop has finally made it to the small screen. Thanks to the good folks at Fox TV, a mythical bookstore will be delivered to your home at 8:30 (7:30 Central Time, as they say) every Thursday night for a six-week trial run. If popular, it will undoubtedly be back next fall, so be sure to tell your local Fox affiliate how much you like this show.

The name of the series is "Stacked," and it takes place in a bookshop that may be a lot like yours, if you have a bookshop. The star is Pamela Anderson. Yes, she is the most famous of the old "Baywatch" beauties. And yes, she is older now, 37 to be exact. But, in bookman's language, Pamela is still in "very fine" condition, "like new." One suspects she has had an expert restoration. She is justification enough for watching this show, and that's a good thing, because not much else is.

If you picture Pamela for a moment, you will understand where they got the title "Stacked." It is one of those double entendre things. "Stacked" has two meanings, one of which refers to a pile of books. If nothing, this show is certainly clever.

Now for the plot line. The bookshop is run by two brothers. One is named Stuart or Stewart. I missed the other's name. The first, I'll call him "Stuart," is a regular kind of guy, someone who probably watches lots of shows on the Fox network. The other is a more erudite, geekish, intellectual, someone who probably watches PBS when he is not reading and writing books. It is unlikely he ever watches Fox Network, Fox Sports, or Fox News, and may not even know who Bill O'Reilly is. You know, the elitist type. Other characters include an elderly professor, the stereotypical stuffy, professorial type, and a dumpy looking young woman who evidently makes lattes and such. Give these brothers credit for figuring out how successful bookstores make a living, by selling lattes.

Into this prototypical book world steps Pamela Anderson, who goes by the name of Skyler or Schuyler. Or maybe she spells it some other way. No one much cares about her name. Anyway, it's a good thing she does appear, because the rest of these characters have been given a truly awful set of lines. For example, when the intellectual brother laments the lack of standards today, where a Britney Spears book outsells his own, the professor responds, "standards can kiss my ass!" This is evidently a funny line, as the canned audience breaks out in canned laughter. Fortunately, Pamela arrives just in time to save us from this excruciatingly bad dialogue.

The Fox Network-watching regular-guy brother, I think that is Stuart, immediately falls in love with her. This is the only believable thing that happens in the entire show. The nerdy intellectual brother finds her shallow and annoying. He pines for a reconciliation with his ex-wife, a stuffy, unsmiling woman that no one on earth, not even the geekiest nerd on the planet, would pick over Pamela Anderson. No, they would have to find another title for this show if she were the star.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Hamilton secures the ratification of the Constitution: <i>The Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York, assembled at Poughkeespsie, on the 17th June, 1788.</i>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Caius Julius Hyginus, <i>Poeticon Astronomicon,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1482. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Giovanni Botero, <i>Le Relationi Universali... divise in Sette Parti</i>, Venice, 1618. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> <i>L'Escole des Filles</i>, likely third edition of the first work of pornographic fiction in French, 1676. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Illuminated Book of Hours in Latin on vellum, Flanders, early 16th century. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes Regiomontanus, <i>Calendarium,</i> Venice, 1485. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Pedro de Medina, <i>Libro d[e] gra[n]dezas y cosas memorables de España,</i> Alcalá de Henares, 1566. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b><br>Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> Salamanca, circa 1496-97. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Andrés Serrano, <i>Los Siete Principes de los Ángeles, válidos de Rey del Cielo,</i> Spain, 1707. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes de Sacrobosco, <i>Sphaera mundi,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1478. $15,000 to $20,000.
  • <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> A Rare 3-rotor German Enigma I Enciphering Machine. $70,000 to $90,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Important collection of correspondence between Werner Heisenberg and Bruno Rossi. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Walt Whitman Autograph manuscript containing his thoughts on death. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> David Roberts. <i>Holy Land</i>. Six volumes. 1842-1849. First edition. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Extensive collection of Ray Bradbury's primary works, most signed or inscribed. $15,000 to $20,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Peter Force. Declaration of Independence. $12,000 to $18,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Steinbeck. <i>Grapes of Wrath</i>. A fine copy of the first edition. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Lewis & Clark. <i>Travels to the Source of the Missouri River</i>... First English edition, extra-illustrated. 1814. $10,000 to 15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Manuscript document signed by Nuno de Guzman relating to Hernan Cortes, 1528. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> “Nos los inquisidores..." The first book in English printed West of the Mississippi. [1787]. $5,000 to $8,000.

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