When John Munch retired in 2013, we became nostalgic and looked back at the Tommy Westphall Universe, which we created as a simple excel spreadsheet and key back in the early 2000s. We moved the Grid and the Key here, and we also updated the Master List of shows that were somehow connected to St Elsewhere and Homicide: Life on the Street.
We didn’t go to the trouble of updating the Grid or the Key in 2013, because by then we hadn’t done any research on the subject for six years.
Interest in finding connections to little Tommy’s Universe never dies – it comes in waves. People discover it every day. People find links every week. We loved watching the universe expand, without feeling the need to chart it every step of the way.
Just recently, though, we spent a full weekend in a concerted effort to update the Grid and the Key – eight years after we last properly updated it. In the meantime, more than a hundred shows crossed over with other shows already in the Master List.
The Law & Order universe met the Chicago Fire/P.D./Med universe; not surprising, since they are all Executive Produced by Dick Wolf. More characters picked up the bad habit of smoking Morley cigarettes. And while fans who have become writers since the 1990s still love referencing The X-Files, a lot of recent showrunners like to tip their hats to Lost. And all of JJ Abrams shows have small nods to each other. Except Felicity.
So here we are, 419 shows in all, including two from France, a handful from the UK and a little Canadian universe called Degrassi are all a part of little Tommy Westphall’s imagination. Have fun exploring his mind.