My friend Jason is a big fan of Dana Gould’s lockdown YouTube series, “Hanging With Dr. Z” the concept of which is that the Dr. Zaius character from the original Planet of the Apes movie had a Mike Douglas type of talk show that existed in a retro period when he would have modern day guests on via a monitor (a la the old Space Ghost Adult Swim show) but allude to his interactions with celebrities from a bygone era, making you unsure when this is all taking place.
Okay, that was a really long sentence, that had no ending. The point is, Jason saw an IG post where a fellow fan (@jabbers_gallery) had used action figures to emulate one of these imaginary celeb confabs with the Doctor, and he was hoping that I would both have a Dr. Zaius figure, and would do “something fun” with it. Challenge accepted!
I watched all the episodes of the show to get a feel of the tone of the show and the set itself. It is probably shot in front of a green screen with a “set” graphic in the background, but I chose to make my own real life one with materials I had on hand. As it happened, I did, in fact, have a Hasbro Signature Series™ 30th Anniversary Edition Planet of the Apes Dr. Zaius action figure in 1/6 scale that had been collecting dust in a mint box for many years!
The 12″ cloth-costumed figure didn’t have a lot of articulation, and would not be able to achieve a sitting position, so I made his desk high enough to hide the fact that he is standing up. Then picked out some other similarly-scaled figures that could be products of a bygone, kitschy era (70s Gene Hackman in his Lex Luthor outfit from Superman I and II; Elvis in his classic ’68 Comeback Special leather suit; Jack Nicholson in 1980 Jack Torrance clothes from The Shining; and Apprentice-era Donald Trump just for some variety.)
The results were then cropped to square Instagram shape and uploaded with the requisite tags and hashtags to my Instagram account. Eventually the official DrZ account took notice and nicely reposted them to Instagram and Dana Gould himself, or at least his official Facebook account repost the repost to his Facebook page.
Here are some alternate takes, and uncropped versions, along with a bonus Twilight Zone Kanamit one that missed the cut: