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tropicjeff

The Desilu Playhouse: Collectors Series

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For those of us not in the inner circle I finally found a way to see some of the hard to find Desilu Playhouse shows on ebay. An outfit called Nostalgia Merchant is selling a dvd set of 7 Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse shows. Just got mine and last night watched KO Kitty starring Lucy for the first time. To think this was about the time of her divorce is really amazing as she looked stunning. The show was quite corny and the laugh track over the top but it was great to see something new. Am looking forward to seeing Desi's solo show. According to the dvd there were 48 shows. Wish we could see em all.

 

A question: How can this company put a copyright on the dvd package and say unauthorized copying is prohibited. This stuff must be public domain by now.....

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How is the quality? I have the Review and KO Kitty and they are not that hot looking. Mine came by way of tape trading so they got copied many times.

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I see Time Element is part of this. I've seen it and am sure it is part of Twilight Zone stuff. Nice to see how that started. I really want to see the Desi solo show.

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I wonder why CBS DVD will not release an official dvd set of The Desilu Playhouse? This would be an amazing dvd release if it is ever done. I would love to see all the Desilu Playhouse shows restored and on dvd. Has CBS DVD ever thought of a possible dvd release? The Lucy Desi Comedy Hour is on dvd so why not the other Desilu Playhouse shows?

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Last night we watched "Thunder in the Night" which was Desi's solo on the Desilu Playhouse. I almost didn't recognize him at the beginning of the drama. He looked bloated and totally different from his Lucy appearances. The drama was quite intense and kept the interest. The commercials for Westinghouse were very cool including one for a new Westinghouse stereo radio. You tune one radio to the FM frequency and the other radio to an AM frequency to get STEREO sound! Can you believe it?

 

At the end of the show Desi returns as host and looks like his old Ricky Ricardo self again. Don't know if it was the make up that made him look so different or what. I think he said it was filmed in Italy so maybe he was living it up over there during the filming and looked so ragged? The show concluded with some excerpts from Lucy Goes To Mexico, coming in two weeks on the Desilu Playhouse!!!!!!!!!!!

 

As far as the quality goes, I'm not a stickler for crystal clear presentations if it something this rare. I would love to see it pristine but since the archives aren't being opened for my personal viewing tastes, this is about the best it'll get folks. I agree a complete dvd release would be great, but with all the stars appearing in this series perhaps it would be a residual nightmare.

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A great clip of Carole Cook in the "Desilu Revue" episode of the Westinghouse Playhouse. She talked a bit about this performance in her interview for season 2 of TLS.

 

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I wonder why CBS DVD will not release an official dvd set of The Desilu Playhouse? This would be an amazing dvd release if it is ever done. I would love to see all the Desilu Playhouse shows restored and on dvd. Has CBS DVD ever thought of a possible dvd release? The Lucy Desi Comedy Hour is on dvd so why not the other Desilu Playhouse shows?

 

I just don't think there's much interest. The only way they could get away with releasing any of them would be as bonus features on future Lucy sets. They'd have to be attached to something that would actually sell. I, for one, wouldn't care about buying any other Desilu Playhouse entries on their own.

 

There are also probably music rights to be dealt with that would tie up some of these from being released. As it stands, I doubt CBS has any reason or interest in dealing with these properties. Ones that feature Lucy could make interesting bonus features if there aren't any legal issues standing in the way, but that's probably it.

 

A smaller studio maybe could do it, but CBS doesn't seem to be a huge fan of outsourcing. Then again, they did sell home video rights for "Wings" to Mill Creek, so maybe.

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Seeing as the audience is always there for anything Lucy, I think CBS could put on anything with her and it would do ok, however, as I've said before, it wasn't that great to begin with, that's a different story.  I think they would do better with Lucy's installment of Greatest Show on Earth.

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Today I watched The Desilu Revue show which featured Lucy, Desi, Bill and Vivian as well as cameos by everyone from Spring Byington, William Demarest, Ann Sothern, Danny Thomas.....and Lassie among others! It was more or less a musical variety show with Lucy's "kids" whom she was grooming for a career. Other than Bob Osborne and Carole Cook, I'm not sure WEHT Georgine Darcy, Mark Majel, Tobin Barret, Howie Storm, Johhny O'Neill, Rob Barran, Gary Mentee, Frances Martin, Dick Kallmar, Janice Carroll, Jerry Antes and Marilynn Lovell. Would be an interesting research project.

 

The musical numbers in the show were not songs that I've ever heard before and I'm quite well versed in the songs of that time. All in all it would have been a great color show. The Lucy and stars segments were adorable but the fast forward button came in handy during some of the musical numbers.

 

The final number sung around a Christmas tree was very touching including Bill and Vivian giving each other a peck on the cheek. I imagine if someone at CBS had some imagination they could cull enough footage from the in-between segments of the show to come up with a cool half hour NEW Christmas show for next year.  If they do, remember it was my idea! :lucyeww:

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!m not sure WEHT Georgine Darcy, Mark Majel, Tobin Barret, Howie Storm, Johhny O'Neill, Rob Barran, Gary Mentee, Frances Martin, Dick Kallmar, Janice Carroll, Jerry Antes and Marilynn Lovell. Would be an interesting research project.

 

 

Here's some information about a few of the Desilu Workshop players:

 

Dick Kallmar had his own sitcom, Hank, in 1965. Hank only lasted one season, but seems to be one of those short lived shows that is still remembered. Kallman later became an art dealer and was tragically murdered in 1980.

 

Marilyn Lovell played Irene Malloy in the Mary Martin international company of Hello, Dolly! She later married composer Peter Matz and became an AIDS activist. She died a couple years ago.

 

Janice Carroll did bit parts in TV shows and movies. She was on The Odd Couple a few times. She and Robert Osborne both have very small parts in the movie version of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. I don't think either of them have any lines.

 

Roger Perry starred on the short lived Desilu sitcom Harrigan and Son shortly after the Desilu Workshop ended. He was married for many years to Jo Anne Worley and now married to Joyce Bulifant.

 

Georgine D'Arcy was a regular on Harrigan and Son. Her most famous role came before her Desilu work: she played "Miss Torso" in Rear Window. Fellow Desilu Workshop player Jerry Antes was her dancing partner in that. I wonder if they came to Lucy as a team.

 

Majel Barrett is best known for her work on Star Trek and was married to Gene Roddenberry.

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Thanks for the great info on the Desilu Revue players. Guess it was kind of a mixed bag as their continued success.

 

Last night we watched the premiere Desilu Playhouse entry of "Bernadette" starring Pier Angeli. I never heard of her but looked her up on Facebook and she apparently had quite a career in films. This story about the Miracle of Lourdes was a bit long in the tooth and probably could have been told in a half hour, but it was ok. My wife fell asleep during it and said it was too slow.

 

The copy shown on the Collectors Series dvd has Desi giving a five minute lenghty intro about the series. It is great to see him in his element, talking shop and obviously very into the production of this new series. Of course he has a cigarillo in his hand the whole time! And of course the commercials  were hilarious, especially the one for the new child proof television set. At the end of the show Lucy talks to Desi on the phone while he is on TV.  That was an interesting surreal idea.

 

Hope you are enjoying these comments and remember, you can be sure..........if it's Westinghouse!

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Here's the final look at this dvd. Watched "The Time Element" which is the inspiration for The Twilight Zone. Desi was not featured in this and the Westinghouse name wasn't in the titles. It was just "The Desilu Playhouse" and the copy was pretty washed out. This must have been a re-edited version as I think I recall seeing Desi host this on TV Land a long time ago.....

 

Also on the dvd was Adam West of Batman fame in "Murder is a Private Affair" which was a cool 1950s crime thriller with lots of twists and turns that I'm not really sure what happened.

 

OK, now can we have all the other episodes please? Someone? Hello........Is Westinghouse still around? Maybe they have an archive someplace...

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This was in fact presented on TV Land and with the Westinghouse open and with the Desi introduction. I remember watching it and this was the first time I saw the Opening and was very happy to see that.

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I bought this a week ago and really am enjoying it. However, I've never experienced this, but while my product was in transit to my house, it was actually taken down by eBay. So, there must have been some copyright infringement of sorts. Luckily I still received my package, but they're not selling them anymore. :lucymeh:  I will be sure to actually burn these to my computer at some point and could possibly send out copies.

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I haven't sat through the entire "Revue"...mainly looked at Carole's parts.  Carole was obviously Lucy's favorite: she got TWO spotlight-ed numbers while many others did nothing more than the group numbers.  Did Janice Carroll do anything in the show?  Which others had no solo spots?

I love what starts out as sort of creepy look at beatnik life that turns into a very un-beatnik number "Singin' the Blues" which seems to be a celebration of sado-masichism.  Dick Kallman is an engaging performer,  but I never saw a "Hank", it was an NBC comedy after all.

Here's some information about a few of the Desilu Workshop players:

Dick Kallmar had his own sitcom, Hank, in 1965. Hank only lasted one season, but seems to be one of those short lived shows that is still remembered. Kallman later became an art dealer and was tragically murdered in 1980.

Marilyn Lovell played Irene Malloy in the Mary Martin international company of Hello, Dolly! She later married composer Peter Matz and became an AIDS activist. She died a couple years ago.

Janice Carroll did bit parts in TV shows and movies. She was on The Odd Couple a few times. She and Robert Osborne both have very small parts in the movie version of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. I don't think either of them have any lines.

Roger Perry starred on the short lived Desilu sitcom Harrigan and Son shortly after the Desilu Workshop ended. He was married for many years to Jo Anne Worley and now married to Joyce Bulifant.

Georgine D'Arcy was a regular on Harrigan and Son. Her most famous role came before her Desilu work: she played "Miss Torso" in Rear Window. Fellow Desilu Workshop player Jerry Antes was her dancing partner in that. I wonder if they came to Lucy as a team.

Majel Barrett is best known for her work on Star Trek and was married to Gene Roddenberry.

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I haven't sat through the entire "Revue"...mainly looked at Carole's parts. Carole was obviously Lucy's favorite: she got TWO spotlight-ed numbers while many others did nothing more than the group numbers. Did Janice Carroll do anything in the show? Which others had no solo spots?

 

 

Robert Osborne does not have a solo spot either. I assume that those who do not have solo musical numbers had comedy sketches in the actual revue that weren't included in the TV version. Robert and Janice both have dialogue in the wraparound scenes.

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