Most of the Lucy-Ricky hour-long episodes are painful to watch.
OK the Tallulah Bankhead episode was a riot, and the Fred MacMurray & Danny Thomas episodes had their moments, but overall the shows seemed like a bad parody of I Love Lucy and just so obviously formulaic. Lucy's increasingly bitter, haggard look and awful new hairstyle didn't help things much. The awful Howard Duff/Ida Lupino episode, in which the Mertzes barely appeared, was the nadir of the series, though the Paul Douglas and Milton Berle episodes give it a run for its money.
Mrs. Trumbull's sister
Wasn't this the series that Bob Cummings appeared in? I just remember he looked hot in the bathtub and then being surprised at how much older he really was than he looked.
Yes that was the Japan episode in which Lucy and Ethel dressed geisha girls. I think it was the only hour episode that Katherine Card (Mrs McGillicuddy) appeared in.
Milton is hilarious in drag walking out of and on the sides of his heels and saying with exaggerated lips "I love you". He probably copied Marilyn saying that as he was fucking her.
That would have been the very last Lucy-Desi show together. People witnessed Lucy crying during the filming, wearing that white Kabuki make-up, and her eyes being all red. They said the contrast was bizzare.
Most of the hour shows left me cringing. I do think Berle doing his kissy-mouth-shoe-flop routine (familiar as it was) was very funny.
I also agree that the Lupino/Duff episode was horrid. Lupino herself was creepy in just about any venue once middle age and her directorial career took off - like a tiny, sullen doll wanting to move your furniture.
Lucy showed her bitterness in these episodes. It was sad to watch because you knew it was the end and that it was not ending well.
The very last Lucy/Desi show was the one with Edie Adams and Ernie Kovacs.
Lucy filed for divorce the day after it aired.
The Ernie Kovacs episode is just awful too.
But the contrast is interesting: you get the feeling that Kovacs and Adams were on top of the world, while Lucy and Ricky come across as strained.
I remember as a child my mother said the show made her look like an awful person. Lying, conniving and whining about stupid things. My mother felt sorry for Ricky - the character not Desi the person.
Lucy, herself, said the Lupino-Duff episode did not work because Lupino had no comic timing. I read it in one of the Lucy bios. Lucy told this to someone on the set and she thought Ida overheard her, causing even more strain. Another thing that not everyone knows, none of the hour shows were filmed before a live audience. They were all done on tape, on set. This destroyed all the spontaneity, the very thing that made Lucy "come alive." She needed an audience. The others did, too. You can see in those shows where the edits and cuts were done. It looks fake as shit. And Lucy's wierd short hairdo made her look old. She already had enough bags and circles and wrinkles from the strain of her crumbing marriage.
The episode with Ernie Kovacs and Edie Adams was the last one. Desi and Lucy weren't speaking to each other. Edie Adams said how terrible doing the show was for her. They divorce shortly afterwards.
The episode where Lucy and Viv put on a production of Ibsen's "Ghosts" was never aired, probably due to the low ratings of the other episodes.
It has been rumored for years that Desi ordered the tape destroyed after Viv (as the maid, natch) stole every scene from Lucy's Mrs. Alving.
Bad Lucy is better than no Lucy at all.
That's what I used to think when I was a kid.
The gossip surrounding the Tallulah Bankhead episode is legendary. She was drunk/high the entire week of filming, and this is really apparent as you watch the show. Lucy and Desi had to literally bathe her and feed her regularly. She called Vivian "Cunty", she would strip nude during story meetings, and claimed she had triple pneumonia. (triple, Lucy said, in all three lungs). When other actresses were involved Tallulah would deliberatly screw up during rehearsals, throwing them off, then delivering a perfect performance during filming. Overall the episode is by far the best of the hour episodes, the beginning when Lucy and Ethel insult her furniture when they do not know she is standing right behind them is hilarious.
Lastly, the episode was written for Bette Davis, but she broke a bone and was unavailable for the part of the actress next door, unless she lived next to Marcus Welby, I guess.
RE 14 - Wow...can only imagine the difficulty the cast and crew must have had on " Batman" almost 10 years later. Going by this, she must have progressed to peeing in her costumes during takes, and shooting ping-pong balls out out of her twat, at Robin.
Bankhead was a terror during rehearsals but letter perfect on tape night. It shocked everyone.
One other factor to consider: These shows were broadcast over three seasons and were never meant to be watched the way they are being shown now. In those days, the viewing audience probably salivated over any new "Lucy," even a bad one, because they were used to seeing her on a weekly basis until ILL ended.
Ida Lupino was one of the main directors for the show "Gilligan's Island" which I think is hilarious. How could Lucy think she had no comic timing!?
Read somewhere that when they were shooting the Fred MacMurray show(involving a car chase), and were filming in the desert outside of Vegas (where the episode was set), Desi got pissed that a stuntman wasn't driving the car (I think it was a classic T-Bird)fast enough over some dip in the road - he wanted the car to hit the dip, and really fly off the ground. After a couple failed takes, Desi said "Out of the car amigo - I'll do it". He told the cameraman to gear up, drove the car up the road, u-turned it, and sped back over the dip, getting the perfect shot.
I just remember reading that it was an extremely hot, & tense set. Don't know if that had anything to do with Desi grabbing the reins, so to speak, and getting the job done. (Book might have been an old Lucy bio).
I'm very old and fondly remember Ida Lupino and Howard Duff as the stars of their own short-lived sitcom called Mr. Adams and Eve about the Ricardo-like adventures of a married Hollywood actor couple. And I remember Ida being pretty funny on it. Howard was very hot!
You're all forgetting the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour with Ann Sothern, Cesar Romero and Rudy Vallee that is a flashback of how the Ricardos met. That was a good one, certainly better than the Fred MacMurray, Danny Thomas, Bob Cummings and Milton Berle hours. But perhaps it was a special that was shot while I Love Lucy was still running?
Just what we needed, another fucking Lucy thread.
You elderly cunts are driving this place into the ground.
Jackass at R21, In case you haven't heard.... Everybody loves Lucy! It's the most popular TV show of all time and appeals to people from 4 years old to 100. Get over yourself.
Oh, and I'm pretty sure I'm younger than you too, Geezer
RE 21 What would YOU like to talk about, you youthful sprite ? Justin Bieber, Jay Z,"Gossip Girl",Fun, "Girls", Taylor Lautner,D Squared....
Please - what youthful,facinating subjects do you want to discuss ?
[quote]Ida Lupino was one of the main directors for the show "Gilligan's Island" which I think is hilarious. How could Lucy think she had no comic timing!?
Acting and directing are two different things. Lucy probably felt that Ida couldn't play comedy in the broadly presentational style that Lucy favored. Lupino was a superb film actress because she was a master at underplaying. Lucy belonged to the Eddie Cantor school of acting: face front, plant your feet, speak out, keep it bright and pick up your cues!
The strange thing about the Bob Cummings hour is that Bob was also in a Shirley MacLaine movie called My Geisha in which Shirley played a housewife lving in Japan who disguises herself as a geisha girl to test her husband's fidelity. I think Robert Mitchum played her husband but Bob was the best friend.
So it has virtually the same gimmick as the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour set in Japan.
I don't know which one came first. Who stole from who?
The film shoot must have been the only 4 weeks that Shirley actually lived in Japan with neglected daughter Sachi.
Madelyn and the 3 Bobs
I thought Howard Duff was fucking hot!
He shows up in a Golden Girls episode as a guy who jilted Sophia and she put a couple of curses on him. One curse is that his socks would keep falling down.
R18, have you ever SEEN Ida Lupino in that episode? Or in ANY comedy? As talented an actress as she was, she was NO belly laugh.
Lucille Ball wanted to continue with the show, but Gary Morton talked her out of it.
I think it is hilarious that we have a "Gary talked her out of it" troll. LOL
R23, any of those topics would be better than this old hag.
Why must you live 50-plus years in the past? You elderly assholes are ruining DL.
r30, you do realize you are typing into cyberspace and have zero idea of the age of any of these posters...don't you?
I would say that feeble assclowns such as yourself are ruining DL. Most of these posts are fun and interesting. Your contributions? Not so much.
[quote]R23,any of those topics would be better than this old hag.
Perhaps a compromise thread, such as SHOULD JUSTIN BIEBER PLAY "MAME?" is in order?
The Fernando Lamas episode isn't half bad either. Neither was the Red Skelton one. Concur that the Duff/Lupino and Paul Douglas episodes were the worst, along with the Maurice Chevalier episode, which I almost forgot about. The Ernie Kovacas one was no great shakes, but it is interesting to watch because of Edie's observations about Lucy/Desi's deteriorating relationship during filming.
[quote]you do realize you are typing into cyberspace and have zero idea of the age of any of these posters...don't you?
I don't know who you think you are kidding here, grampa.
R1, I agree, always thought Bob Cummings looked super hot in that bathtub in the Japanese episode. That ep is not bad and has lots of funny lines.
A couple of comments:
Lucy filed for divorce the day after the Kovacs/Adams episode was FILMED not aired. By the time it was aired, the divorce was old news. In fact she filed on Desi's 43rd birthday, March 2, 1960. Filing earlier would have violated their contract with their sponsor.
And when Desi drove the car himself and did it perfectly....since he was director, no one had called for a take so the camera wasn't turning when he did his drive....it had to be done again.
R33, yes, Edie said that she chose to sing the worst possible song "That's All," a tender love song, in that episode not knowing how bad things were with the Arnazes. She said that Lucy cried all the time and that the atmosphere on the set was like a funeral.
I'm 20 years old and I Love Lucy. I've watched her ever since I was kid. Anyway, I liked the TB, FM and DT episodes the best.
Edie Adams also said that Lucy made her change her dress and hairdo a half dozen times until she was satisfied with Edie's look.
I love how the OP said, the show is so bad and than lists like 90% of the episodes which he said are good.
I love that song "That's All."
The lyrics are particularly apt:
(By alan brandt, bob haymes)
I can only give you love that lasts forever
And a promise to be near each time you call,
And the only heart I own
For you and you alone,
That's all, that's all.
I can only give you country walks in springtime
And a hand to hold when leaves begin to fall,
And a love whose burning light
Will warm the winter night,
That's all, that's all.
There are those, I am sure, that have told you
They would give you the world for a toy.
All I have are these arms to enfold you
And a love time can never destroy.
If you're wondering what I'm asking in return, dear,
You'll be glad to know that my demands are small.
Say it's me that you'll adore
For now and ever more,
That's all, that's all.
Lupino directed a boatload of drama sitcom shows in her time. The Luci-Desi hours were part of a Desilu anthology show that included the pilot for "The Untouchables" and other Desilu series. It ended shortly after the marriage. When Ball took over Deslilu the studio mostly functioned as a rental lot for independent producers like Sheldon Leonard & Danny Thomas. The studio may have become profitable under her, but it did so by investing in very little until Star Trek & Mission Impossible which she didn't "get". Gene Roddenberry hated dealing with her.