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Posts posted by upperco

  1. Still marathoning... nearing the end of Season Three, which I have cited in the past as my least favorite season...


    First off, Lucie is 10x better than I remembered; Desi is not as good. Gale is better, however. 


    I used to love Season One, but I think it's just because it has several of the series' best -- "Lucy Visits Jack Benny," "Lucy, The Matchmaker," "Lucy, The Fixer", "A Date For Lucy," "Lucy, The Shopping Expert" ... 


    I used to not like Season Two, but aside from the single cam episodes (and a few blunders) I really like the year as a collective whole -- especially "Lucy And Harry's Tonsils," "Lucy's Burglar Alarm," "Lucy At The Drive-In Movie," "Lucy And The Used Car Dealer," "Lucy Protects Her Job," "Lucy And Wally Cox," "Lucy And Carol Burnett" ... 


    I'm very conflicted about Season Three. There are a few awful episodes, but there really aren't as many bad episodes as I thought. And the ones that ARE really bad, are also kind of hysterical -- "Lucy And Ma Parker." I'm watching "Lucy's House Guest, Harry" now, and this, like the past few, have just seemed really blah -- and that's the biggest problem with this season, I think. What do you all think of the third season?  

    • Like 1

  2. Job Switching




    The Anniversary Present


    The Handcuffs


    The Operetta


    Vacation from Marriage


    The Courtroom










    Lucy Hires an English Tutor








    Sales Resistance




    The Club Election


    The Black Eye


    Lucy Changes Her Mind


    No Children Allowed


    Lucy Hires a Maid




    Lucy’s Last Birthday


    The Ricardos Change Apartments




    Lucy Wants New Furniture






    Never Do Business With Friends

  3. 1-The Girls Want to Go to a Nightclub

    2-Be a Pal

    3-The Diet

    5-The Quiz Show


    7-The Seance

    8-Men Are Messy

    9-The Fur Coat

    10-Jealous of Girl Dancer


    13-The Benefit

    16-Lucy Fakes Illness

    17-Lucy Writes a Play

    18-Breaking the Lease

    19-The Ballet

    22-Fred and Ethel Fight

    23-The Mustache

    24-The Gossip

    25-Pioneer Women

    26-The Marriage License

    27-The Kleptomaniac

    28-Cuban Pals

    29-The Freezer

    30-Lucy Does a TV Commercial

    31-Publicity Agent

    32-Lucy Gets Ricky on the Radio

    33-Lucy's Schedule

    34-Getting Bald

    35-Ricky Asks for a Raise

  4. I agree on the writing for Frasier, but the later seasons do have some particular gems; "Daphne Does Dinner" from season 10 immediately comes to mind.

    Frasier was always perfect at 'case of mistaken identity' type things. Plus that episode probably has the best sight gag from the whole series with the bed falling through the ceiling!


    Yes, each season has their standout installments. And I actually think the final two years are better than Seasons Eight and Nine, but my opinions may change when I view them all again chronologically... 

  5. I like that the sentimental moment comes at the beginning of this episode instead at the end of the prior one. Like life, we have our sad moments and we go on. (I've always thought sitcom episodes should end with laughs rather than tears.)  I agree Lucy and Desi seem more natural and relaxed here. I also like seeing the Mertzes interact on their lonesome. It's really a quiet episode -- very well written, as you said.


    But, I don't know, it seems more functional than anything else. It's the episode where Lucy and Ricky first move into their new house, and the writers cement in the fact that the Mertzes aren't leaving the series -- even if they're still in the city (for now). It's an I Love Lucy, so there are some golden moments, but of the 13 Connecticut episodes, I think the majority of them have bigger and more frequent laughs than this one. I'll have to watch it again soon though... 

  6. Having seen all 56 recently, I think the biggest disappointment with the switch is how little Deacon himself brought to the role. Carmel was an individual, and given that the only characters with fully developed quirks and nuances were Kaye and Eve, his distinction was a major benefit. The material certainly wasn't doing Roger (or the rest of them) any favors, but Deacon didn't do the material any favors either -- certainly not in the way Carmel did. 


    That said, I don't think the switch had anything to do with the show's declining quality, especially since the comedy had already plateaued by the middle of the first season. Simply: the premise couldn't sustain a full year of excellent episodes. Moments here and there, sure, but nothing consistent. 


    I'm crazy about the show, don't get me wrong. But most of it has to do with the performers and the scattered moments of SUPREME physical comedy.


    And I certainly don't ascribe the show's failure to receive a third season to the casting of Deacon. As Hamlet said, "the play's the thing..." 

  7. For curious parties, here's a clip from perhaps my favorite episode of He & She entitled "A Rock By Any Other Name." I'll set it up...


    Dick makes a fuss about he and Paula buying each other inexpensive gifts for their upcoming shared birthday. Dick forgets and buys Paula a pricey fur coat, only to learn that Paula has gifted him with a rock...


  8. I'm hoping you eventually do the ten best episodes of each season of Frasier someday :lucyhmm:


    Thanks! Cheers is my second favorite sitcom, after I Love Lucy, of course, and I'm just nuts about the writing during the first five years of Frasier -- so sharp. I'm not that enamored with the later years, but I can say the same of All In The Family and Seinfeld. So, I'll definitely be doing Frasier. It'll just be a while before I get there. 

  9. I just screened every single episode of The Mothers-In-Law for two blogposts (coming in May to http://jacksonupperco.com/) covering my favorite episodes. I also screened every episode of Good Morning World and 25 of the 26 He & She. (I will be viewing the one I'm missing of the latter at the UCLA Archives in March.) 


    I can tell you that He & She is brilliant. Better than any single season sitcom that I have ever seen. It won the Emmy for best writing that season -- deservedly. The ensemble is excellent, the stories are fresh, and the show is laugh-out-loud funny... every single episode. Blows the competition completely out of the water. Good Morning World has about three good episodes out of its 26. The rest are bland. Meanwhile, The Mothers-In-Law launches superbly and runs out of steam embarrassingly early in its run (before the 13th episode). I will say, however, that the second season isn't nearly as dire as I remember -- maintaing that sort of amusing mediocrity for the majority of its run.


    The Mothers-In-Law deserved the second season it got, but He & She more than deserved the one it never got. 

    • Like 1

  10. Watching  Here's Lucy chronologically for a series of blog posts in May on my favorite episodes... 


    "Mod, Mod, Lucy" was better than I remembered. 


    "Lucy The Process Server" is often chided as being more like an episode of The Lucy Show than Here's Lucy, but I actually think it's quite funny. 


    In the middle of Season Two now...


    The on-location episodes still do absolutely nothing for me, but "Lucy And Harry's Tonsils" and "Lucy's Burglar Alarm" are much better than I remembered --- very funny! 

  11. I actually think Season Six is one of the better seasons. In fact, I think the middle years -- Two, Three, and Four -- have the highest proportion of duds to gems. 


    As for the quality of the series itself, Here's Lucy has its moments, but I think it would be very difficult to realistically consider it on the same plateau as Lucille Ball's former work or even the work of its later contemporaries -- most notably All In The Family and The Mary Tyler Moore Show, which both premiered during HL's third year. (And it's impossible to adjudicate the series without comparing it to other shows; that's how we determine our enjoyment -- of anything.) 


    Now, I think you would be hard pressed to find fans of Here's Lucy whose enjoyment of the series isn't predicated on an appreciation for Lucille Ball's work as a whole. I haven't met anyone who, regardless of Ball, liked the series for what it was. Of course, it's difficult to separate Lucy from the series, but my appreciation for the show is SOLELY linked to my appreciation for Lucy. The same can be said of The Lucy Show, except the scripts and cast (of the Danfield years) were much stronger and more memorable. Meanwhile, I think Lucy in TLS occasionally reached comic brilliance, but I don't think she was afforded the chance -- given the below-mediocre scripts and one-note regulars -- to reach those hilarious heights on Here's Lucy. So, there's no way I would watch this series if I wasn't an over-the-top Lucy fan. 


    Basically, Lucy fans (like myself) may enjoy the series as another place to see TV's best comedienne in action, but I would never ever consider Here's Lucy a great show. Sometimes, it's good. A lot of the time it's not. 

  12. Anybody in "the know" with regards to the special features? I must admit -- my curiosity is definitely peaked. Anyone care to speculate or engage in some wishful thinking? 


    Maybe there's more material from the pre-series vaudeville tour. Maybe more on set home movies. 


    Maybe that documentary that Fidelman's book claims was produced during Season Three's "Equal Rights" will make its way onto a future release. (This would truly blow my mind.) 

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