Watch Warren Beatty's Second (?!) Dick Tracy TV Special: Weirdness!

Watch Warren Beatty's Second (?!) Dick Tracy TV Special: Weirdness! ...

A two-way wrist radio is apparently now possible to Zoom.

On Friday afternoon, I received word (via GameSpot) that a Warren Beatty-produced Dick Tracy TV special would be broadcasting on TCM the same night. "Did Tracy" was interviewed by film experts Leonard Maltin and Ben Mankiewicz about his life and career, as well as legendary actor and director Warren Beatty."

If that very premise isn't wild enough, Beatty-the-actor makes a "surprise" appearance in a special in which he will reprise his 1990 Dick Tracy film role! — this was actually the second such television special Beatty has produced and starred in, all apparently in an effort to maintain the rights to the comic book detective.

Beatty bought film and television rights to the character in 1985, directed the 1990 film with Al Pacino, Dustin Hoffman, and Madonna, which failed to produce a sequel, and has since gone to court lots to hold the rights. (The first small-screen follow-up, also called Dick Tracy Special, also aired on TCM, back in 2010; watch in on YouTube, if inclined.)

Tracy Zooms In is a 2010 musical directed by Beatty and Chris Merrill, which has been praised by many on social media. Because it was, as well as being pure pain to see.

Tracy Zooms In is not the character we saw in the 1990 film, but an inspiration. A consultant. And in this second TV special, Dick Tracy criticizes Warren Beatty for his choices in the comic book style film, all as Mankiewicz and Maltin do little more than listen and trade glances.

Again, Beatty and Merrill were credited, although there appeared to be no actual script. I mean, there's a sequence where Dick Tracy cues up footage from the 1990 film for Mankiewicz and Maltin, and then provides rambling commentary that's mostly, "I would have done that differently," and "No, no, no," though he at one point makes a few complete sentences mocking the pink and red streets in the movie.

If you pay close attention to Beatty-as-Dick Tracy throughout the film, you'll see countless, trying-to-be-seamless but actually-jumpy edits, which would suggest that this special was never tightened up at all, when in fact there are myriad awkward pauses. Likewise, it's easy to speculate that Mankiewicz and Maltin banked just a few reaction shots that got reused or dropped when appropriate.

Beatty and Tracy give us hints about doing "new things" with the character, perhaps "another film," but that's just part of this rights-preserving legal maneuver.

Beatty makes good on a lunch with Dick Tracy at the Polo Lounge, which he apparently was a no-show for in a bygone era. All as the two apparently continue their grievances.

Did you also stumble upon Dick Tracy's Special: Tracy Zooms In by accident? If so, did you manage to make it all the way through the 27 minutes?