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Lucie to Appear on I Love Lucy-themed Will & Grace Episode!

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Sooooo looking forward to this! Just noticed Megan (Karen) as Lucy has a martini in her hand!! :HALKING:

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Mattel's decision to make that jacket green had far reaching effects. Even the 2003 movie depicted it in that color instead of its original brown.

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While I’m glad that it happened, the show didn’t impress me much. I think that by doing word-for-word, movement-for-movement recreations of scenes, they opened themselves up for a lot of criticism. Had they maybe done a parody of those scenes and let the W&G characters shine through more, it would have been better. The attention to detail was great, but in the end, why not just watch Lucy? I would’ve preferred emulation over imitation, if that makes sense. Lucie was the only part of the episode that got any kind of reaction out of me; she was excellent. Knowing how sitcoms work, it was driving me crazy thinking about how the show must have been produced in front of the audience. We’re the wraparound segments prerecorded? How long did it take getting everyone in and out of makeup? Something truly in the spirit of Lucy would have put the audience first.

I hope it doesn’t sound like I’m totally dragging the show- for the casual or uninitiated fan it’s a net-positive. I’ve seen this episode in advertisements for weeks, which suggests that even though most people are uninterested in watching Will & Grace, they’re definitely still interested in Lucy. I can’t think of a TV show that’s done such a wholehearted Lucy tribute since the late 80s/early 90s.

Fun Fact: Megan Mullally shared a lineup with Lucy in 1986, airing right after LWL with her costars (and my fellow Michiganders) Burstyn and Stritch.

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Cue spider face!

The idea was a good one, but the execution lacklustre. It says a lot that Debra Messing was more convincing as Fred than Lucy! 

I truly hope this episode puts to bed the notion of Messing ever playing Lucy. The Vitametavegamin scene was painful!

The grape stomping scene was better but too short and clunkily edited. You can tell these were a lot longer when shot. It felt like watching butchered syndication prints. I loved Karen popping up with a glass of wine at the end though.

Sean was the best Lucy and the chocolate factory the strongest scene. Overall, Lucie killed in her cameo, but I was a bit disappointed by her "speed it up a little" delivery. Could've used more force. Apart from that, she was delightful. I'd love to see her do another sitcom!

The closing song was a sweet way to end things, I will say. I'm glad they did the episode, but it could've been so much more than it was. 

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Pure joy and laughs. I loved that they used the original scripts, it made it so much more real. The apartment setup and being the same each time gave us a good way to see how the ILL character varied when the WG character traits were added. Karen was the most obvious and Grace the most subtle. 
 
Vita: Debra NAILED it. This was not easy for her to not overplay the faces and the drunkenness. I've seen this scene parodied before and never liked it because it's done too broad. Debra kept it funny, focused and most of all you still felt the lovableness of Lucy come through. Her face at that first spoonful was very reminiscent.
 
Grapes. Very smart to pair Karen and Beverly. Also Karen was my least Lucy like character so to give her the more physical and less lines worked well. I laughed at that glass of wine at the end. The Italian by Leslie was a nice touch.
 
Candy. The icing on the cake with Lucie. She had that factory boss sternness down. Debra as Ethel was so pretty and again I felt Grace still come through in that portrayal. Enjoyed Sean's Lucy in the apartment part, fun but not really Lucy. He also did my favorite Fred.
 
Will as Ricky worked and Eric didn't overdo the accent and by using the original lines we didn't spin into parody territory with "Lucy I'm home...." stuff. 
 
The wraparoundsgave us a good way to get in and out of the scenes and explain the character swaps. The musical number at the end was a sweet way to button the episode. Also very happy in the outtakes as well.
 
I've seen I Love Lucy parodied many times but very few can do Lucy and very few other versions were done with as much heart as this had. You could tell the cast knew this was special. 
 
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Well, it was a nice HOMAGE even if it didn't work as well I would have liked.  Debra did as well with Vita as anyone could expect but once again it proves: there's only ONE Lucy.    I don't think starting each segment with the same opening scene was a good idea.  There's not another TV show or movie that's so familiar that it could be parodied like this.  Maybe Wizard of Oz.  

Re: RodMcK's comment about Fred being too fat.  You're right.  But if Ethel was relaying the comment to frostbitten-eared Fred she would have said "Nothing you've heard before!"

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Having watched it a second time, I give Debra props for some good facial expressions (which, Shelly, you're right, she didn't overplay). The voice was a tad overpitched but she certainly did it less "over the top" than many earlier attempts. Part of me can't help but wish they'd done this episode back in the early 2000s when the show was in its heyday and her comedic timing at its sharpest - she'd have killed it back then. Though I will say I think she made the funniest Fred of the bunch, hands down.

I noticed this time around that Megan was wearing stockings while stomping grapes but Leslie wasn't. I wish this segment had gone on a little longer and featured more fighting. Maybe it was because of their ages or updated safety rules, but they didn't get as rough and tumble as Lucy and Teresa. The glass of wine was an inspired touch. 

Sean's timing while working the chocolates astounds me. He really nailed the split second grabbing. I also loved the touch of him recreating Lucy's goof of popping one in his mouth too soon and then spitting it out.

Lucie should star in "The Elvia Allman Story". What a perfect part for her to play. However, I think it was a BIG mistake cutting the camera angle to her back before she delivered the "speed it up" line - a missed opportunity to recreate that famous shot of Elvia's profile shouting it. 

The set was beautifully recreated - I hope that it gets preserved for future Lucy-related projects.

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Does anyone know how they shot this?  In his interview, Sean mentions 5 hours of makeup to get into Fred.  I'll bet they shot each segment on a different night with a different audience.  I've often wondered in the original how much time  they took to get Lucy into a different costume and make up.  They were much more concerned about not keeping the studio audience waiting forever than they are today.   As I've mentioned before when I saw the Here's Lucy blind date/Don Knotts,  while Don did his Ben/Fred speech they were making Lucy up as werewolf in real time so there was no break before she emerged. 

I thought the guy doing Ross Elliot was good and I love that the guy doing Jerry did that "23% alcohol??" take. 

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Yeah, Ross and Jerry were pretty good matches! 

Perhaps if they were doing another season, they'd continue the trend with a "Lucy Show" tribute episode. It'd be fun seeing them all alternate as Mr. Mooney. I'd like to see Megan take a crack at Mad, Mad Margo, while Ruta Lee could reprise her role as Audrey Fields. Lucie, meanwhile, could cameo as the fur salon owner in a recreation of the "Pat Collins" opening scene.

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The episode had 2.67 million live viewers, which is the second-highest rating of the season. I guess airing against Grey’s Anatomy doesn’t help, but I really thought this episode would get above average viewership.

Besides Lucie’s appearance, the other part of the episode I genuinely liked was at the beginning when Will mentioned how much of a genius Desi was. I guess I’m not familiar enough with Will & Grace, because the only character trait I saw incorporated was Megan Mullally always having a martini in her hand and putting on that high voice. Other than that, everyone seemed to be doing an impression, save for maybe Leslie Jordan. I’m glad they did it, but it was pretty fruitless (grape-less?) for me.

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I went back and scanned the credits and saw that Bob, Madelyn, and Jess aren’t credited anywhere as writers on the episode. I wonder how that works from a legal standpoint.

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56 minutes ago, Freddie2 said:

I went back and scanned the credits and saw that Bob, Madelyn, and Jess aren’t credited anywhere as writers on the episode. I wonder how that works from a legal standpoint.

I wondered about that, too. Was there any mention of "I Love Lucy is a registered trademark of CBS" or anything like that in the credits? I need to take another look myself. If anything, the Lucy writers should've gotten a special thanks or something.

Also, no "Based on an idea by Bob Greenblatt"? RUDE. 

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On 4/10/2020 at 8:44 AM, Neil said:

Does anyone know how they shot this?  In his interview, Sean mentions 5 hours of makeup to get into Fred.  I'll bet they shot each segment on a different night with a different audience.  I've often wondered in the original how much time  they took to get Lucy into a different costume and make up.  They were much more concerned about not keeping the studio audience waiting forever than they are today.  

Practically every episode of "I Love Lucy" was filmed in less than an hour, including camera reloads and costume changes. The record was only 42 minutes! (The "no-retakes" rule helped.) When they filmed "The Freezer", they shot it from start to finish, only applying those "frozen Lucy" makeup effects that could be applied very quickly just before she was rescued from the freezer. When they reached the end of the final scene, they announced to the audience that they were going to apply more "frozen" makeup to Lucy and re-shoot the "Freezer rescue" scene, but it would take at least an hour to apply all of Lucy's makeup, so the audience was free to go. But if anyone wanted to wait around and watch the reshoot, they could. As it turned out, every single member of the audience sat and waited for over an hour to watch the re-shoot of that scene. 

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On 4/10/2020 at 11:44 AM, Neil said:

Does anyone know how they shot this?  In his interview, Sean mentions 5 hours of makeup to get into Fred.  I'll bet they shot each segment on a different night with a different audience.  I've often wondered in the original how much time  they took to get Lucy into a different costume and make up.  They were much more concerned about not keeping the studio audience waiting forever than they are today.   As I've mentioned before when I saw the Here's Lucy blind date/Don Knotts,  while Don did his Ben/Fred speech they were making Lucy up as werewolf in real time so there was no break before she emerged. 

I thought the guy doing Ross Elliot was good and I love that the guy doing Jerry did that "23% alcohol??" take. 

Lol! I thought the same. I really liked the Vitameatavegimin part but the rest fell flat with me. With all they did to recreate the Grape stomping set, you'd think the could have used it to their full advantage and recreate that scene with Debra Messing. I did like the part where Karen (as Ethel) looked at Lucy (Debra), felt her robe and commented on it. It was a bit off character but it was funny to me. Debra should have kept doing Lucy throughout the episode. I really felt Lucy Ricardo coming through to her. At least I felt it. The sets were create as much as possible to the original. Overall I enjoyed the tribute. 

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The "We Love Lucy" episode of Will & Grace received three Emmy nominations today: Outstanding Directing for James Burrows, Outstanding Editing, and Outstanding Production Design. 

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