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From my collection of old TV Guides, I've discovered that not all stations loved Lucy! As a kid who spent the summer looking forward to the morning's  CBS I Love Lucy episode, I sympathize with the kids of Seattle, Ohio and Kansas, because they got rooked!  It's not like these stations were against reruns, because they aired "The McCoys" and "Pete and Gladys".   When "The Lucy Show" became part of CBS's morning line-up (for 4 years 1968 to 1972), Seattle ran it at noon, but not so with I Love Lucy. 


Our local station did not show CBS's short-lived morning airings of "Here's Lucy" in 1977 but by that time I was in college and couldn't have watched it anyway.  HL must not have done well for CBS.  I don't think they made it through one full run of the series.


In 1964, A young mother was prompted to write to TV Guide which they published on the "Letters" page, complaining that "they've run those old I Love Lucys into the ground.  Even my 4 year old says she's 'seen that one before'".


First off I say the obvious to this mother: turn off the goddam TV and play with your 4-year-old.  If you don't want to watch I Love Lucy, don't  spoil it for the rest of us.  If you MUST have the TV on, switch it to another channel, ferChristsake!  Maybe some station is showing "Beach Blanket Bingo". 


 When I Love Lucy first came on CBS in the morning, I was too young to operate the television so it wasn't until later I discovered it in the summer (this was after The Lucy Show had premiered).  Much to my often-expressed chagrin, our family did not subscribe to TV Guide.  The I Love Lucys were all new to me and you never knew what episode you were going to get.  Of course, I had no idea about the progression of the series and the various story arcs but I don't EVER remember seeing an episode and thinking "that wasn't a very good one".  Even though it was less than 10 years since the series ceased production, the hairstyles and fashions made it  seem like from another, older era.


Looking through these old TV Guides, I find it sort of amusing that for the daytime showings, they give a very short sentence describing the plot ("Lucy hires an English tutor") and follow it with "Lucy: Lucille Ball. Ricky: Desi Arnaz" as if that's news to us. 


If the actual title of a show was "The (name of star) Show", TV Guide would only list the person's name as the show's title: "Andy Griffith" not "The Andy Griffith Show"  for instance.  For "The Lucy Show", TV Guide always listed it as "Lucille Ball" even though it wasn't called "The Lucille Ball Show".  They did this all the way through 1972 for the daytime airings. 


And that's all the reminiscences I have for one morning. 

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Interesting... makes me wonder: This aired right about the time The Mary Tyler Moore Hour was in production.  Lucy's guest appearance -- as well as one by Mike Douglas -- centered heavily plot-wise around the fact that Lucy was Douglas' co-host that week, which is why she had to get out of doing his show if she was going to appear on Mary's.


Given this week with Lucy (on TMDS) aired in November and TMTMH was taped in December, could perhaps Mary's writers been "inspired" by the aforementioned appearance?? Or am I totally grabbing at straws???

WHile we'll probably never know, the timing is certainly interesting. :HALKING:

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  • 1 month later...

From a November 1954 TV Guide, Sheila Graham writes "When I Love Lucy ceases production at the end of next year, Lucille Ball will give up acting and become a director"!

As we all know the series went on to a 6th season and then into the specials.  I think Lucy took a directed by credit for the "Desilu Revue" but it would be 20 years before she took a co-directing credit for Here's Lucy.....along with the usual director Coby Ruskin (for "Lucy, the Sheriff").  The remaining few episodes of that season, the last for Here's Lucy were directed by Jack Donahue.  Seems like there's a story there that's never been told.  The first run episode of "I Love Lucy" that week in November 1954: the classic "Ethel's Birthday".   Think of the wonderful episodes those people in November of 1954 had in store for them. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

April 2-6, 1962 TV Guide plot descriptions for the morning's I Love Lucy.  You have to wonder if the person writing these had actually seen the shows and/or where they got their information. 

Monday: "The Ricardos resolve not to brag about their new baby, but the resolution falters because of parental pride"  (what an odd wording for "Baby Pictures")

Tuesday: "Ricky bets Lucy she can't tell the truth for TWO days running"  

Wednesday: "Lucy and Ethel use their knowledge of French to order in a French restaurant----with disastrous results"--not exactly the thrust of the episode. 

Thursday: At least they got this one right "The Ricardos help the Mertzes redecorate their apartment" which took up a line and half of print.  The next two lines informed clueless viewers what actors played what character.  Who was the 1962 moron who had to learn from TV Guide that the character of Lucy was indeed played by Lucille Ball?

Friday: "Police are looking for Madame D, a mysterious burglar.  The finger of suspicion points to Lucy", who is once again played by Lucille Ball. 

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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 weeks later...

From the May 4, 1974 issue of TV Guide, "Here's Lucy" was well into its rerun cycle and the offering that week was not from the previous, last season #6.  It was once again "Lucy Meets the Burtons" which made me wonder.  HOW MANY times was "Meets Burtons" shown in prime time?  I'm thinking at least FIVE (so LBP certainly made up for all the money spent on the episode).  I think it had 3 runs in the 70-71 season when it first aired.   

For its last 3 seasons, HL's 24 episodes were all (give or take) shown twice.  In 1972 for the first time, HL aired all reruns from the previous season.  For the summers between 1963 to 1971, TLS and HL were replaced by other series in the summer.  TLS: "Vacation Playhouse" (unsold pilots) and in 1965 Desilu's "Glynis", but from 1969 to 1971, HL was replaced by selected reruns of The Lucy Show, usually the same guest-star heavy batch.  Ditto the summer after the last season of TLS.  It's interesting to see which episodes they selected for the limited rerun sked and which never saw the light of day until CBS reran them in the morning.   My recollection is that the only TLS episode pre-California ever rerun in this 'classics' run was "Ceramic Cat", run in 1968 once. 

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  • 1 month later...

In the May 9, 1959 TV Guide, a 3-page spread was devoted to a list of the 100 outstanding shows of the 58-59 season.

Some were sporting events or political coverage.  For entertainment most were "events": "Hallmark Hall of Fame", "Playhouse 90" "Omnibus" "Bell Telephone Hour", mostly specials (and one "Desilu Playhouse").  Only TWO sitcoms made the list.   An episode of "Father Knows Best" from February 1959 "Kathy Grows Up".  Don't know what was so special about that particular FKB episode.  The other comedy to make the list was December 1958's debut of "Lucy Makes Room for Danny".  It's wonderful that the greatness of that one was appreciated even at the time.  But come Emmy time, why was everything connected with  "The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show" ignored, the show itself, the writing and the actors?  The 58-59 winner for Best Actress-Comedy Series Continuing Character was FKB's Jane Wyatt winning over Ann Soutern, Ida Lupino, Donna Reed, Spring Byington and my personal pick among the nominees Gracie Allen.  Jane is perfectly fine on FKB but WHY is it that the spouse of the lead character always got nominated as a LEAD when they were no more the star of the show than several others in the cast?  Even Ted Bessell, boyfriend of Marlo Thomas got one lead nomination for "That Girl".

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  • 1 year later...
53 minutes ago, Brock said:

Would love to see this.


 "The 50-minute Hour" sounds like what US Steel got the night "Lucy Takes a Cruise to Havana" aired.    What year was this?   Some of these were saved on videotape (or even kinescope) and are available.  Never heard of this one.   Playhouse 90 was considered the most prestigious,  but TV was filled with LIVE presentations in the 50s.  They were learning as they went and with the split-second complexities (actors and cameras hitting their marks), it was an exciting time to be part of television.  But it was so exciting, it was heart-attack inducing for the directors.  Videotape took some of the strain away but tape was difficult to edit in those days hence the term "live on tape".  

With things like "Playhouse 90" being beamed to living rooms (on maybe a 21 inch screen) for free (with minimal commercials:  no SIX MINUTE commercial breaks, of which I clocked a recent "Will & Grace" rerun as having) , it's a wonder that movies and live theater survived at all.   Once they were able to edit videotape, a lot of the excitement was gone.  It's an era we'll never see again.  Some of these live shows were done in COLOR but kinescopes were made for the west coast feed and had to be ready 3 hours later.  Color film couldn't be developed that quickly so all the kinescopes of color programs I've seen are in b/w unfortunately.  A lot of work and preparations went into these productions that were only seen ONCE---and only if you happened to be home and were not viewing one of the other 2 networks. 


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  • 4 months later...
14 hours ago, Neil said:

From an August 1965 TV Guide "Bulletin" page:

"Screen Gems has signed comedienne KAY STEVENS and will try to build her into a new LUCILLE BALL."

Poor Kay didn't get very far.  Not even a pilot I've ever heard of.  

That building never got past the blue print stage. Can say I've ever heard of the lady. 

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  • 7 months later...

1-line rerun plot descriptions in a 1970 TV Guide

LUCILLE BALL-Arthur Godfrey sings "Reconstruction Time"  (not what I would call the "highlight")

I LOVE LUCY-Lucy, disguised with glasses and a putty nose, goes star-hunting at a famous Hollywood restaurant. (did writer watch the show in reverse?)

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