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What episodes are you watching on "The Lucy Show"?

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Neil    1,276

"Lucy Teaches Ethel Merman to Sing"---in the attached video, I tried to augment the Lucy Show soundtrack with the "I Got Rhythm" track from the actual album Ethel released around this same time.   I actually had a record-player that was very similar, if not identical to the one shown here.  Mine was a ("you can be SURE if it's) Westinghouse.  The volume knob Ethel turns down is not a volume knob at all.  It's that round Westinghouse brand logo. 

How many times has this similar plot been done with a celebrity in all 3 series?  Where Lucy tries to pass of the "lookalike" as the real thing?  Or the variation: where Lucy has a run-in with the real celebrity and there's a lookalike imposter out there, usually a crook trying to get money under the guise of being the real thing?  Seems like it was used a LOT, but right now I can't think of any.  (I've certainly known some everyday people that resemble celebrities but not enough to fool someone into cashing their checks).

"The Lucy Show" is sometimes referred to in books as being "just an excuse for Lucy to interact with the celebrity guest star of the week".  Ethel Merman was The Lucy Show's first REAL guest star, and the only one in the first 59 episodes (I'm not counting ROberta, Umberto, Gary Stewart or the golf pros) and "Ethel" was episode #48 (in the order aired).  The next celebrity was episode #60 with Jack Benny as the plumber.  (Wait! there's another with the above described celebrity lookalike premise!)   And if you don't count Ann Sothern's four 3rd season episodes as 'guest star' shows (I don't), that season had just Benny (plus Hope cameo), Danny Kaye and  Arthur Godfrey bringing the total to just 4 in the Danfield years, the first 84 episodes, over half (54%) of the total TLS output.   Just goes to show how far afield The Lucy Show eventually strayed from the original premise. 

 

 

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Luvsbway    1,939

Me-Tv had  article on Marnie Nixon, who died earlier this month. I thought this was interesting. 

"Her television work flew under the radar, but sticks out in our memories. She choreographed three episodes of The Lucy Show, including a hilarious number in a Greek restaurant involving Lucille Ball."

So what are the other 2?

 

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Mot Morenzi    1,405
1 hour ago, Luvsbway said:

Me-Tv had  article on Marnie Nixon, who died earlier this month. I thought this was interesting. 

"Her television work flew under the radar, but sticks out in our memories. She choreographed three episodes of The Lucy Show, including a hilarious number in a Greek restaurant involving Lucille Ball."

So what are the other 2?

 

I think you mean Miriam Nelson. 

She choreographed Lucy & The Golden Greek, Lucy Helps Danny Thomas and Lucy in the Music World.

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Luvsbway    1,939
2 hours ago, Mot Morenzi said:

I think you mean Miriam Nelson. 

She choreographed Lucy & The Golden Greek, Lucy Helps Danny Thomas and Lucy in the Music World.

Yeah, I probably do. Thanks for those other 2.  Oh I love Music World.  

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Neil    1,276

"Lucy and the Safe Cracker"

Decades is once again running 2 episodes of The Lucy Show right after 2 of I Love Lucy.  The first season alternated the original stick-figure opening credits with the black and white kaleidoscope.  One time, they ran the stick-figure video with the kaleidoscope audio, the first time I've seen that.   They're now into the 2nd season.  Even though, I've got those great prints on DVD, I still can't resist tuning it in.  Today I watched "Lucy and the Safe Cracker" (Lucy Meets Mooney part 2).  My favorite ILL changes from time to time as does my favorite TLS.  For a time, "Safe Cracker" was my favorite.  It's not one that makes anyone else's list for some reason.  But I think it's JAM-PACKED full of great comedy.  And great lines---one after another.  Character-driven funnies, not Milt Josefsburg "gags" (which often make me do the same).  A lot happens in this fast-paced episode.  Plus Jay Novello puts in a stellar performance.  Highlights: Lucy shoving gooey chocolates into Larry McAdoo's mouth so they can sing the jingle as promised.   Lucy being dunked in chocolates: I don't know how they rigged that up so the chocolates stuck to her eye sockets.  Could that have been an accident?  After that, Lucy does this great "chicken" bit as she's trying to see what's going on.  The audience is laughing so hard at Lucy that the others have trouble getting their lines out and heard.  Amazing that this is only Gale's 2nd episode and he fits right in as if he's always been there. 

 

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Neil    1,276

I cannot put my finger on it but there's something OFF about that third season--as compared to the 2nd.   The absence of Bob & Madelyn is an obvious factor, but......the premises are good, for the most part.  And the dialogue shows spark here and there.   So what is it?

It may be the absence of funny lines that seemed to flow naturally out of conversation*: a B&M specialty, along with unusual words they used to spruce up dialogue.  Lucy Carmichael in the third season just wasn't as "classy".   2nd season: I can't tell the difference between the shows written by "3 Bobs and a Babe" and those written with Fred Fox and Iz Elinson; or the other handful of writers brought in, which leads me to conclude the quality was up to Bob and Madelyn.  None of the 4 3rd season Schiller-Weiskopf episodes thrill me, though they contain some funny moments. 

*such as Viv (bemoaning Lucy economizing on meals) "Pretty soon I'll be nothing but skin and bone."  Lucy: "Face it, Viv. You could lose 30 pounds before your skin even gets near your bone."

 

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Mot Morenzi    1,405

There are some very funny 3rd season episodes, but the atmosphere definitely has a different feel to it.

I think this was due in large part to the new writers ignoring much of the previously established continuity. All the recurring women from the first two seasons were dropped. No more Thelma, Audrey, Kathleen, Dorothy, etc. It no longer had that community feeling to it. Yes, we had new recurring characters such as Mrs. Valance, but they were never given the characterization or "friendliness" of the earlier characters. Had the new writers crafted some new Volunteer Firemen plots or something, it would've helped the series retain more of its old feeling. 

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Neil    1,276

"Wingding", "Lucy and Joan" "Stuntman"---

Am I the only one who loves the "Wingding" episode?  Perhaps if you knew how similar it was to actual shows of the time ("Shindig", the most obvious), the parody might be more enjoyable.   Lucy without Viv is a little softer and sweeter this season (as compared with season 3).  A most hilarious aspect, albeit unintentionally, of Wingding is its host "Reb Foster" and his awkward movements trying to dance along with the ensemble.  In the closing credits "Reb" appears as "himself".  He must have had some sort of show like "The Lloyd Thaxton Show".  Lloyd was sort of square looking and much older than his audience and introduced rock groups who mostly lip-synced their latest hits while the teens took to the dance floor.     "LT" was a 5-day a week, half-hour syndicated series.   Despite being swamped by Desilu business, in these three episodes Lucy does NOT look at cue cards, which makes her performance all that much more genuine.  This season, she's still got that Lucy Ricardo sweetness, which (IMO) would ebb away during the last half of the 5th season. 

Decades showed an edited version of Wingding I've never seen before.  Much of the original dialogue remains intact (not the CBS morning/NickatNite edits) but when it comes to the Tear Ducts performance on Wingding, the scene opens as the dancers are finishing the title song, Reb introduces Lucy and Mel and then the scene skips the entire first verse, the slow-moving part, and cuts directly to the up-tempo rock verse.   And who don't we see the title lucy types out on the typewriter (earlier in the Pop Record company office) when she and "Tink" are trying to come up with something?   I suppose it's ridiculous to quibble about TLS continuity but Reb announces that Barney Miller is getting a record of the Tear Ducts song out the very next day---and by the next week, Lucy Carmichael's appearance on network TV and her recording career are never mentioned again. 

Re: the infamous Joan B.--toilet plunge incident.  We assume Lucy was making some comment about Joan's performance (as Joan "FU Lucille Ball" Blondell  interpreted it), but she may have been referring to how the scene was playing or some objection to the script....and not Joan herself.   When these stories emerge, the press-writers seem to be taking the other person's side, making Lucy look bad---without considering the other possibilities of what Lucy was trying to do.   I think Joan worked well with Lucy and would have made a passable Viv replacement.  This episodes gives us the only clue as to what happened to Chris.  She's going to college "up north".  

Other than the extended supermarket scene (which, while amusing, seems like filler), "Lucy and Joan" is a solid episode.  And I don't care what anyone says, Lucy as Ironman is hilarious----despite the fact the her director and fellow stuntmen don't notice her long lashes, colorful eye-shadow and ruby-red lipstick!   Let's see the other Emmy nominees that season pull this off: MTM or Liz M.!   The great Lou Krugman appeared in both Wingding and Ironman.  I can't think of an episode after that in which he appeared which is a shame because he and Lucy worked well together.  

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Luvsbway    1,939

I love the Wingding part of this episode. Recently clipped it for my Instagram and it got a great reaction. I personally love how Lucy wraps her legs around each other on the stool.

I know TVs and quality were smaller and poorer back then, but those lines stuck to the record are so obvious they had to have been seen back then.

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Neil    1,276
Just now, Luvsbway said:

I love the Wingding part of this episode. Recently clipped it for my Instagram and it got a great reaction. I personally love how Lucy wraps her legs around each other on the stool.

I know TVs and quality were smaller and poorer back then, but those lines stuck to the record are so obvious they had to have been seen back then.

What do you mean: "lines stuck to the record"?   RE: "Stuntwoman".  Lucy/Ironman's pay for her H-12 adjusted for inflation would be $800 in 2018. 

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Luvsbway    1,939
25 minutes ago, Neil said:

What do you mean: "lines stuck to the record"?   RE: "Stuntwoman".  Lucy/Ironman's pay for her H-12 adjusted for inflation would be $800 in 2018. 

In the office scene Lucy's lines are taped to the back of one of the record albums.

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