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Theodore J. Mooney vs. Harrison O. Carter


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Harry, over the seasons, came to be much nicer to Lucy than Mr. Mooney.  Further, the Harry Carter character was much more logically motivated to put up with Lucy's secretarial inadequacies due to the familial relationship.  And during the Danfield years, there isn't much interplay between Mooney and Viv.  Overall, Harry is just a more satisfying character.

 

Plus, I like Harry's occasional "dirty old man" moments like leering at the nurse in "Lucy and Harry's Tonsils" and ogling a centerfold model in a different episode ("Lucy at the Drive-In Movie" ?).

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The one thing I noticed about Mr. Mooney was that he was more tolerant of Lucy Carmichael during their years in Danfield. Once they moved to California and they became boss and employee, their relationship really changed. As Lucy became more of a ding-a-ling, Mr. Mooney became more hot-headed and exasperated. He was quick to yell and scream at Lucy without giving it any thought. I don't blame him for being annoyed as much as he was as Lucy was incompetent and always trying to get out of working. Which begs the question ... why didn't he just fire her and hire a better secretary? He had no obligation at all to keep her as his secretary. 

 

Harrison Carter was in a different situation from the start as he and Lucy Carter were more or less family. His niece and nephew were Lucy's kids. They relied on her for financial support. She was his secretary. Even though this Lucy was incompetent as well and demanding, Carter (unlike Mooney) actually had a reason to keep her as his secretary as it provided for his niece and nephew. But still their relationship was pretty much the same as Carmichael's and Mooney's in the last three seasons of TLS. Things did change; however, especially after Lucy broke her leg. Harrison was there when Lucy needed him the most (i.e. Harrison Carter, Male Nurse), he yelled less and there were actually some touching moments between him and Lucy that were more or less absent in the earlier seasons.

 

So between the two, I pick Harrison Carter as we got to see more sides to him than Mr. Mooney.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Harry's name was "Charles Hooper" in the original script for Mod, Mod Lucy. The Hooper name doesn't really make sense. If he's Lucy's brother-in-law, they would have the same surname. I think they realized it and changed "Hooper" to "Carter." Charles was probably changed because the kids called him "Uncle Charlie" and there was already an Uncle Charlie on TV at that time: William Demerest on My Three Sons.

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  • 1 year later...

Though I feel The Lucy Show was, on the whole, stronger than Here's Lucy, I also agree that Harry Carter was a funnier and more logical character than Mooney. There was never enough motivation for Lucy's association with Mooney on TLS, especially in the later years. And HL also provided Gale with more comedy moments.

 

I truly believe that Mooney was introduced too fast and too strong on TLS. The character should've had a more gradual introduction. As it stands, after 2 episodes, everyone acted like he'd been on the scene from day one, and the character only really served to drive a wedge between the Lucy and Viv plots. It altered the standing dynamic too much.

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Though I feel The Lucy Show was, on the whole, stronger than Here's Lucy, I also agree that Harry Carter was a funnier and more logical character than Mooney. There was never enough motivation for Lucy's association with Mooney on TLS, especially in the later years. And HL also provided Gale with more comedy moments.

 

I truly believe that Mooney was introduced too fast and too strong on TLS. The character should've had a more gradual introduction. As it stands, after 2 episodes, everyone acted like he'd been on the scene from day one, and the character only really served to drive a wedge between the Lucy and Viv plots. It altered the standing dynamic too much.

Well ....what brought this observation on??? :vanda:

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I think the fact that Harry was a better character was also do to the relationship connection between him and Lucy Carter. One moment that comes to mind is in the two of them in the booth at Sam's Restaurant in season four's  "W/ Viv As A Friend..." When they both start crying and say they miss each other, it's genuinely heartwarming because you never hear those two say that, not to mention it got a solid pop from the audience. I don't feel like TJ Mooney became a huge part of TLS until season 5. The first three seasons Lucy had Viv and the kids to bounce off of, and season four had a lot of episodes away from the bank. Unfortunately the year Gale got to shine the most was also the worst year of any Lucy show ever, so the writing was just awful. I'm not sure what made Harry Carter feel more like a human on HL, because he's basically the exact same character as Mooney.

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Two reasons I think for the softer side in HL were 2 factors. Once Lucy broke her leg the Harry character had to develop. No one wanted to see a man yelling at an injured woman. Once that relationship was able to start it could continue. Second I think some of it had to do with Bob and Madelyn coming back as writers. I know they were there in previous seasons but they had the ability to give characters a softer side and in turn a more well round personality.

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