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Suzuki Beane (Unsold Pilot)


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Here is a pilot with unexpected depth! This is the shortened version of "Suzuki Beane," produced by Desilu, and starring Katie Sweet (who was later in "Lucy Misplaces $2000) and JIMMY GARRETT! When the show didn't sell, they edited down and included it in the pilot for The Victor Borge Comedy Theatre along with that airplane scene with Lucy and Gale, and another unsold pilot, "The Sound and the Fidelity" with Tom Ewell.

 

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I thought I recognized "Atta Girl" Katie Sweet. At first I thought it was Family Affair's Annisa Jones with dark hair. Who was the teacher?

It's certainly a different type of show than most of the early 60s sitcoms...No laugh track for one thing. "Julia" was the first sitcom I remember without one. Although with that show I always thought they submitted it to the laugh track guy and he said "WHERE am I supposed to put LAUGHS??"

Do you know who the creators and writers of "Suzukie Beane" were?

I don't understand the premise of The Victor Borge Comedy Theater.

Did it ever air?

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I thought I recognized "Atta Girl" Katie Sweet. At first I thought it was Family Affair's Annisa Jones with dark hair. Who was the teacher?

It's certainly a different type of show than most of the early 60s sitcoms...No laugh track for one thing. "Julia" was the first sitcom I remember without one. Although with that show I always thought they submitted it to the laugh track guy and he said "WHERE am I supposed to put LAUGHS??"

Do you know who the creators and writers of "Suzukie Beane" were?

I don't understand the premise of The Victor Borge Comedy Theater.

Did it ever air?

 

The pilot for "Suzuki Beane" was written by Richard M. Powell, who also wrote The Lucille Ball Comedy Hour/Mr. & Mrs.

 

The Victor Borge Comedy Theater was a proposed anthology show made up of three segments. Borge introduced the three segments and had little bits of his own to do. I've seen it, but I don't remember what Borge did specifically. The Paley Center has a copy in their collection.

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The pilot for "Suzuki Beane" was written by Richard M. Powell, who also wrote The Lucille Ball Comedy Hour/Mr. & Mrs.

 

The Victor Borge Comedy Theater was a proposed anthology show made up of three segments. Borge introduced the three segments and had little bits of his own to do. I've seen it, but I don't remember what Borge did specifically. The Paley Center has a copy in their collection.

 

Isn't including an unsold pilot within another pilot cheating a bit? (And re-pilot-ing, like re-gifting)

And WHY Victor Borge of all people as host??

 

And maybe an alternate title could have been "That's Using the Ol' Suzuki Beane"

 

(OK, I don't remember, in what episode does Lucy say "That's using the ol' mechanical bean" to --I'm thinking--Harry)

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  • 2 years later...

Here is a pilot with unexpected depth! This is the shortened version of "Suzuki Beane," produced by Desilu, and starring Katie Sweet (who was later in "Lucy Misplaces $2000) and JIMMY GARRETT! When the show didn't sell, they edited down and included it in the pilot for The Victor Borge Comedy Theatre along with that airplane scene with Lucy and Gale, and another unsold pilot, "The Sound and the Fidelity" with Tom Ewell.

 

 

I was so delighted to see Brock's reference to Suzuki Beane in the Gag Headline thread I had to check and see if it's ever been mentioned here before on The Lucy Lounge and found this old thread from 2011, a year or so before I discovered it on dvd. I got the Victor Borge program in a bootleg public domain collection of ultrarare 50s/60s tv and the Suzuki segment totally threw me for a loop, probably the best unsold pilot I've ever seen. Probably way too cutting edge for 1962 prime time even with a preschool star but I just loved it. Frankly it's much better than the Lucy/Gale bit (unfortunately) and I don't even remember the Tom Ewell segment so it must have been really forgettable.

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I thought I recognized "Atta Girl" Katie Sweet. At first I thought it was Family Affair's Annisa Jones with dark hair. Who was the teacher?

It's certainly a different type of show than most of the early 60s sitcoms...No laugh track for one thing. "Julia" was the first sitcom I remember without one. Although with that show I always thought they submitted it to the laugh track guy and he said "WHERE am I supposed to put LAUGHS??"

Do you know who the creators and writers of "Suzukie Beane" were?

I don't understand the premise of The Victor Borge Comedy Theater.

Did it ever air?

 

The teacher is Almira Sessions, a fantastic (generally bit part) character actress who was in 126 films from 1932 to 1971 (83 at the time of her last film). Surprisingly only one of those was a Lucy movie, FANCY PANTS, she has an unbilled bit as "Belle", don't remember if she has a scene with Lucy. Suzuki slayed me with her sizing up of this old gal, "She's so square she ought to marry Pat Boone!" :lucyhaha:

 

The Victor Borge Comedy Theater was apparently supposed to be something of an anthology comedic series consisting of short unrelated comedy teleplays. It could have worked but I don't think Borge was the ideal host for this. I'm curious too if this ever aired as I couldn't find an airdate for it on the net when I checked last year.

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Isn't including an unsold pilot within another pilot cheating a bit? (And re-pilot-ing, like re-gifting)

And WHY Victor Borge of all people as host??

 

 

 

 

I think they just did not know what to do with HIM, he was a piano virtuoso, where WOULD they stick him? Besides variety shows I mean.
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When I started paying attention to the writer credits, I discovered "Lucy Flies to London" was "written by Bob O'Brien; with special material by Bob and Madelyn", their only Lucy writing credit between "Baking Contest" and "Burtons". Dumbfounded, I asked Madelyn who told me it was a skit written for this Victor Borge pilot, something she barely remembered. The whole VBComedy Show concept I still don't quite get, unless it was a "Vacation Playhouse" like ruse to burn off paid-for and unsold pilots with Borge lending credence. And again, WHY him? Nothing wrong with Victor. Just not something he would naturally be associated with. Better Soupy Sales!

"Lucy Flies..." is perhaps my favorite post-2nd season LS episode. I first saw the Borge segment at one of the Burbank Lucy conventions. Spangled impresario Tom Watson introduced it implying that in this version they did it RIGHT. I disagree! Maybe it's because I had gotten used to the TLS version, but the single-camera VB filming method just doesn't mesh with Lucy's style. There's a deadness about it in visual presentation and sound, as compared to how Lucy feeds off of a live audience. Desi was a jack-of-all-trades, so it doesn't take anything away from his accomplishments when I say I'm not exactly overly impressed with his directorial efforts. It also may have been a bit of a strain directing his estranged wife. Assuming this pilot was 1960, divorce filing had been done but decree not yet finalized, which I think at the time took a full year---is this right?

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The airplane sketch with Lucy and Gale was actually filmed in January 1962, so Lucy was already married to Gary.

 

Victor Borge had been neighbors with Lucy and Desi, so I guess they were friendly. I don't think they would have recycled unsold pilots on the show if it had sold. Perhaps this was a cost saving measure for the pilot with the Lucy sketch included to try to convince the network to buy the show. I believe Desi tried to make it a condition of CBS' deal to do The Lucy Show that they also had to pick up the Borge series. I don't know why that didn't pan out.

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When I started paying attention to the writer credits, I discovered "Lucy Flies to London" was "written by Bob O'Brien; with special material by Bob and Madelyn", their only Lucy writing credit between "Baking Contest" and "Burtons". Dumbfounded, I asked Madelyn who told me it was a skit written for this Victor Borge pilot, something she barely remembered. The whole VBComedy Show concept I still don't quite get, unless it was a "Vacation Playhouse" like ruse to burn off paid-for and unsold pilots with Borge lending credence. And again, WHY him? Nothing wrong with Victor. Just not something he would naturally be associated with. Better Soupy Sales!

"Lucy Flies..." is perhaps my favorite post-2nd season LS episode. I first saw the Borge segment at one of the Burbank Lucy conventions. Spangled impresario Tom Watson introduced it implying that in this version they did it RIGHT. I disagree! Maybe it's because I had gotten used to the TLS version, but the single-camera VB filming method just doesn't mesh with Lucy's style. There's a deadness about it in visual presentation and sound, as compared to how Lucy feeds off of a live audience. Desi was a jack-of-all-trades, so it doesn't take anything away from his accomplishments when I say I'm not exactly overly impressed with his directorial efforts. It also may have been a bit of a strain directing his estranged wife. Assuming this pilot was 1960, divorce filing had been done but decree not yet finalized, which I think at the time took a full year---is this right?

Dun't get your displeasure with Victor. He was not only a gifted concert pianist, but like Liberace could play popular to get the audience. He did concerts around the world, like Jack Benny, and I saw him at one, he was gifted comedically as he knew that laughter from the audience meant a longer career. Saw a dvd of his just yesterday.

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Victor Borge was ANOTHER one of my absolute favorites in my teen and early 20's years; while raising babies, laughter is ALWAYS a good diversion.... Anytime now I have a chance to see one of his early-days performances, I jump at the chance; no more babies; but, I still NEED LAUGHTER!!!! Did NOT know about Suzuki Beane until I started working on this chronology; love the mention of his name; it brings back fond memories I thought had been hidden away in my psyche....

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Dun't get your displeasure with Victor. He was not only a gifted concert pianist, but like Liberace could play popular to get the audience. He did concerts around the world, like Jack Benny, and I saw him at one, he was gifted comedically as he knew that laughter from the audience meant a longer career. Saw a dvd of his just yesterday.

 

No displeasure with Victor. Just think he's an odd choice to relegated to hosting chores, especially in a show that features random sitcom sketches---which I assume the show was going to be--not really something he's associated with.

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No displeasure with Victor. Just think he's an odd choice to relegated to hosting chores, especially in a show that features random sitcom sketches---which I assume the show was going to be--not really something he's associated with.

Well, he IS associated with one of the funniest gimmicks or comedic numbers, his PUNCTUATION routine, which has been done by other people but nobody can touch him, he started it all, ever see it?

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No displeasure with Victor. Just think he's an odd choice to relegated to hosting chores, especially in a show that features random sitcom sketches---which I assume the show was going to be--not really something he's associated with.

 

have to agree, Neil; it does seem Victor is out-of-character as host or whatever they called him. Thanks for your background' expertise on this thing; and for your friendship with Madelyn; I envy that....Hoping all is well with you and yours. Love, JK

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No displeasure with Victor. Just think he's an odd choice to relegated to hosting chores, especially in a show that features random sitcom sketches---which I assume the show was going to be--not really something he's associated with.

Ever think that maybe Durward Kirby was BUSY!

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  • 3 weeks later...

have to agree, Neil; it does seem Victor is out-of-character as host or whatever they called him. Thanks for your background' expertise on this thing; and for your friendship with Madelyn; I envy that Love, JK (from a prior post, this thread)

 

Only way I could post this is to quote myself from an earlier post; kept getting message post is too short??????

 

Gonna try THIS: I typed twice, no ability to recover 'saved' data; then, got the message: post is too short - WTF, Brock????

 

**********

 

Kudos to Annaleigh, one of our OWN for her contribution to what follows:

 

Desiluforever Tribune Volume I, July 2013 - Dear Fan, We are delighted that you have chosen to take part in the new Lucy movement here at Desiluforever! We are determined to continue bringing new material to the public as frequently as possible; and it is hoped that, through this newsletter, we can further accomplish this goal. While reading the following articles, we hope you will learn something new and develop the love of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz to a greater extent. Enjoy!! A six-page document, this month featuring: Movie Spotlight of the Month: Sorrowful Jones, a brief overview by J.D. Kinn;1949; Video of the Month - The Transportation Sketch - “Lucille Ball & Gale Gordon meet again in this long-forgotten, unaired, pilot for a sketch comedy show - The Victor Borge Comedy Theatre. Although the pilot was scrapped, the sketch was rewritten for an episode of The Lucy Show, 'Lucy Flies to London'. It is also interesting to note that Miss Ball’s original writers, Madelyn Martin and Bob Carroll, Jr, wrote this sketch: To watch, enter what follows in your browser: youtube.com/watch?v=V9nYeKvEU2k; Report: Lucille Ball Comedy Festival 2013; a Comic Section, by Lawrence Nadel, writer, and artwork by Oksner; Gale Gordon: A Spotlight, by Annaleigh Vytlacil; as well as a Trivia Section, page 6,” e-published this date in 2013.

 

Way to go, girl....Love, JK This thing won't even let me edit properly; had Annaleigh's part in red; the part about Suzuki Beane and what evolved from it in blue....JUST PRETEND!!!!!

 

 

 

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