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I don't love Lucy

I'm only 33, so I'm not old enough to have seen any of Lucille Ball's shows on TV, although I have vague memories of watching repeats of I Love Lucy with my grandma when I was a kid.

In part because of the intense love for her here, my partner and I watched a few episodes last night. THAT is what you people are so excited about?

I get that it was groundbreaking at the time, but today it's just a loud, shrill woman acting like a retard. Total lowest common denominator stuff.

by Anonymousreply 15509/06/2015

"acting like a retard"

Tells me everything about you I need to know.

by Anonymousreply 112/30/2012


We're looking at a 600 post flame war.

by Anonymousreply 212/30/2012


by Anonymousreply 312/30/2012

OK, sorry if "retard" offends you, but you know exactly what I mean.

She's loud, obnoxious and stupid. And she basically pushes her costars out of the way in every scene.

I really don't get it.

by Anonymousreply 412/30/2012

OP...don't stop....go on!

by Anonymousreply 512/30/2012

You have to like slapstick comedy to enjoy it. Personally, I don't find slapstick to be terribly funny, and it sounds like the OP doesn't either. It's the same reason I find The 3 Stooges to be insufferable, yet lots of people think it's the funniest thing ever.

by Anonymousreply 612/30/2012

Well, it's no HONEY BOO BOO, but....

by Anonymousreply 712/30/2012

I'm interested to know what TV comedies you do like, OP.

by Anonymousreply 812/30/2012

Yeah, she's certainly no Kardashian.

by Anonymousreply 912/30/2012

I Love Lucy is still the record holder for the longest and largest syndicated and translated show in TV history. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week an I Love Lucy episode is being shown somewhere in the world. Although the old shows sometimes don't hold up, I really think you have to understand that there must be something you and your partner are missing - but nothing is for everyone as they say.

by Anonymousreply 1012/30/2012

I prefer The Honeymooners. It's so much funnier than I Love Lucy.

by Anonymousreply 1112/30/2012

[R6] My cousin and his wife were visiting my parents a few years ago. My mom said that watching an episode of AMERICA'S FUNNIEST HOME VIDEOS with them (as their viewing choice) was about the longest half hour of her life!

I loathe the Three Stooges myself.

by Anonymousreply 1212/30/2012

I Love Lucy is alright, I don't like slapstick so much but Lucy is funny. On a personal not, Lucille Ball was a toad without any sense of humor.

by Anonymousreply 1312/30/2012


by Anonymousreply 1412/30/2012

I've never seen it. And why is Blanche asking me to watch a marathon of episodes, isn't there some football coach she should be putting out for?

by Anonymousreply 1512/30/2012

There's a certain kind of humor that was very popular in the mid twentieth century that was dependent on getting to know the quirks and foibles of a set of more or less ordinary, everyday characters and anticipating how they're going to react to certain situations. It's dumb and predictable, but an easy, comforting sort of entertainment. On TV it was known as "situation comedy," but it's also part of a tradition that developed in comic strips like "Blondie" and "Life with Father" and, in the age of pre-television radio drama, with "Amos 'n Andy" and "Fibber McGee and Molly." Lucy in "I Love Lucy" was very much in the tradition of a certain kind of female comic character, like Gracie Allen or Blondie, who was dopey, maybe more than a little irritating, but somehow lovable. The fact that she was married to this hot, glamorous Cuban nightclub entertainer was both preposterous and sort of exciting (especially since at that time they really were married.)

Contemporary humor tends to be a lot more extreme in terms of rudeness, shock value, and weirdness. It's just a different sort of taste.

by Anonymousreply 1612/30/2012

What R16 said.

I Love Lucy was well written and well acted, and there's no denying Lucille Ball was great at physical comedy. (She showed that again, though with lesser frequency, in her two solo sitcoms.)

To add to R16's comments: I think part of the reason why not everyone finds it so enchanting is just its familiarity. A million sitcoms have been launched in Lucy's wake that imitate it. Even more recent shows like "Everybody Loves Raymond," "Friends," and even "Two and a Half Men" steal or appropriate some of the elements that made "Lucy" funny.

Also, the style and speed of humor and storytelling have changed. There's so much about "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" that I love - great comic timing and very sweet relationships between characters - but the speed and detail in most episodes flies over the heads of anyone under 30.

The main change in humor is that many of the older shows, comedy skits (think Newhart, Cosby, et al) etc. had at their center people making fun of themselves. Contemporary humor is all about making fun of or laughing at someone else's behavior.

by Anonymousreply 1712/30/2012

I never caught the appeal of Lucy either. Found her kind of crass and mugging and even at an early age did not find her 50s-style relationship with Ricky very appealing, in fact something to be avoided in the future -- perhaps this is why I am a lesbian ;)

But reading some of the more thoughtful comments here makes me wonder if she might not be worth checking out again.

by Anonymousreply 1812/30/2012

[quote]I'm interested to know what TV comedies you do like, OP.

Well, I grew up watching the Simpsons, Friends and Seinfeld. The only one of those I can stand watching now is the Simpsons.

Current sitcoms: 30 Rock, Community, Parks and Rec, Louie. I really like the Mindy Project so far, and my partner likes the New Normal, so we've been watching those. Looking foward to the return of Veep and (if it ever comes back) Curb Your Enthusiasm. We still try to keep up with new episodes of the Simpsons, but the DVR is usually taping other stuff when it's on, so we catch the repeats in the summer.

Other than that, I like a lot of British stuff (the original Office, Spaced, TWenty Twelve, The Thick of It). Also, Arrested Development and the Comeback.

by Anonymousreply 1912/30/2012

r19, opinions are like assholes. Everybody's got one. Lucille Ball? An icon and one of the most famous and beloved performers of the 20th century. Her legacy is secured.

I have lived by this creed all my life: Never trust anyone who doesn't love Lucy.

It has never steered me wrong.

by Anonymousreply 2012/30/2012

I find Lucille Ball to be a subtle and nuanced actress. She never reduced herself to cheap gags.

by Anonymousreply 2112/30/2012

Amen R20

by Anonymousreply 2212/30/2012

Yeah, I Love Lucy was no Two Broke Girls.

by Anonymousreply 2312/30/2012

Humor is wildly subjective and time isn't always kind to its effectiveness. Maybe, OP, you watched the wrong episodes, ones that weren't indicative of her skills (and there were several that were dogs). But as has been noted, Ball's comedic skills (and those of Vivian Vance) were unparalleled; both are icons and inspirations to other comedians.

But finally it comes down to personal taste. I don't find Chaplin or Keaton that funny, but I respect their incredible skill and influence and what they brought to the table in their time.

Call her a shrill retard is reductive and shortsighted.

by Anonymousreply 2412/30/2012

I love R20's creeed. It's true.

BTW: I remember Uta Hagan discussing Lucille Ball. Considered her to be one of the finest actresses ever and would use the grape stomping scene and the chocolates scene, as examples of great comic acting.

by Anonymousreply 2512/30/2012

What I don't like about a lot of old sitcoms is the acting. It's very affected as if old- Hollywood decided actors shouldn't speak on screen the way they speak in real life. Lucy was different. Yeah, the situations were zany, but, for the most part, they all sounded like real people. I think that's one of the reasons it's held up well.

by Anonymousreply 2612/30/2012

Her team of writers (Bob Carroll and Madeline something, primarily) would act out the gags while writing. The went on to do some of "Alice's" more memorable episodes too.

by Anonymousreply 2712/30/2012

I'm younger than OP, and I Love Lucy was my favorite show as a child (I watched on Nick at Nite). I know people who are even younger than me, like 20-21 years old, who love it.

As with any other show, one can get bored of watching it and might find some irritating or questionable things about it in hindsight. But the character of Lucy was very well-done and very engaging,

by Anonymousreply 2812/30/2012

Old people had unsophisticated tastes. They would see a person moving about a box, in their living rooms and think the technology was so modern that it had to be good.

Thank god we're past that shit now.

by Anonymousreply 2912/30/2012

People seem to either like or hate Lucy's brand of comedy. Probably the same with Carol Burnett because she did the same physical comedy.

I have always thought Lucy was funny, although I do understand people's thinking she's shrill and stupid. To me, that's part of what makes it funny.

But she put some good original physical comedy on film to be enjoyed. Lighting the putty nose, working in the chocolate factory, getting drunk on vitamin water, getting into a grape fight, etc. All very interesting comedy.

Lucy has been parodied several times. I always laugh at the Simpsons one. You hear Lucy go "waaaah" and then the Fred voice says: Hey Rick, I think you hit her pretty hard.

I'm not sure if this is still true, but at one point the scene where she dances the tango with the eggs in her blouse was the longest recorded laugh by a studio audience on tv.

by Anonymousreply 3012/30/2012

Some people used to say I was a modern-day Lucy!

by Anonymousreply 3112/30/2012

I don't even like Lucy. But, surely I understand that my opinion about anything is but one opinion, and others will disagree. I may not like her, but obviously LOTS of people did, and I can understand and respect that. Not for me, but clearly she was talented and brought enjoyment to a lot of other people.

by Anonymousreply 3212/30/2012

r25, I know that Uta Hagen used Lucy as an example, but Uta would never allow that type of acting in her class. She would consider it untruthful and call it mugging.

by Anonymousreply 3312/30/2012

"Only 33", so perhaps you will have time to hone your troll skills.

by Anonymousreply 3412/30/2012

[quote]Some people used to say I was a modern-day Lucy!

I know that people have said that about Messing but I don't get it. When did Messing ever do physical comedy?

by Anonymousreply 3512/30/2012

In my late fifties, and never liked the harshness. Didn't like Honeymooners either.

Both for working class dimwits.

by Anonymousreply 3612/30/2012

The story behind the lighting of the putty nose goes like this: they didn't realize how hot the putty would get from being set on fire and the bit with her dipping the nose in the coffee cup was a complete ad-lib. She was in pain from the fire and was forced to do something quick. If you watch Bill Holden, you can see he is taken aback by the action and not in a scripted way.

by Anonymousreply 3712/30/2012

OP again. We watched several of the "classics" -- the grape stomping one and the candy factory one were among them.

I guess I was expecting there would be something there beyond just loud, dull slapstick. But that's all there really is. (In comparison, last year we started watching old WC Fields and Mae West movies, and I found them both to be much smarter than I would have ever imagined.)

[quote]The main change in humor is that many of the older shows, comedy skits (think Newhart, Cosby, et al) etc. had at their center people making fun of themselves. Contemporary humor is all about making fun of or laughing at someone else's behavior.

I get what you're saying, but making fun of yourself is hardly a lost art. That's one of the reasons I love 30 Rock so much. All the main characters, particularly Jenna, are basically making fun of themselves.

by Anonymousreply 3812/30/2012

OP your list of favorite comedies disqualifies you from having any taste at all, much less a sense of humor, you're damaged by this generation of snark.

Season 1 was the transition from radio and not sophisticated at all, though it has a few gems, like Vitavitavegamin.

Season 2 really started to hit the mark. If you don't get the episode where Lucy tells Ricky she's pregnant, or when she delivers, or the episode where she buys new furniture without permission and has to make her own dress.... something is dead inside you.

The Hollywood season is not perfect, but Lucy's screen test is a knockout, so is Ethel's Birthday. Classics include the one where she wants to be in pictures - and you can see what a great actress she was, not just a comic. When she plays Ricky's agent and calls her out for every horrible trait she has, she pulls that episode off brilliantly and you can see why she's charming.

We haven't even talked about her adventure in the vineyards in Europe, or where she misses the boat, or her trip back with cheese.

The sophisticated Lucy in Season 3-5 set every standard for women comics that followed her. Watch Ethel's birthday as she poses at the door and tells Ethel "Happy Birthday, and I hope you live another 75 years", she is perfect.

If you can't get that, stick with cartoons.

P.S. If you're 33, you've had plenty of chances to see it on TV in reruns.

by Anonymousreply 3912/30/2012

[quote]OP your list of favorite comedies disqualifies you from having any taste at all, much less a sense of humor, you're damaged by this generation of snark.

How does any of that make Lucy funny? I don't get it.

[quote]The sophisticated Lucy in Season 3-5 set every standard for women comics that followed her

Sophisticated? Are you for real?

[quote]P.S. If you're 33, you've had plenty of chances to see it on TV in reruns.

What an odd thing to say. I'm sure there have been Lucy repeats available to me over the years, but that doesn't mean I watched them. Do you watch everything that's on TV?

by Anonymousreply 4012/30/2012

be grateful you missed this Op

by Anonymousreply 4112/30/2012

Also, this:

[quote]If you can't get that, stick with cartoons.

??? Lucy is basically a living cartoon.

I think some of you mistake nostalgia for quality.

by Anonymousreply 4212/30/2012

oh please OP are you really as stupid as your post at R38 suggests?

Tina Fey could not do what she does without Lucy. They got that self-mockery from her, Gleason and Burns and Allen.

and I Love Lucy is not remotely all loud slapstick.

Season 3 where she and Ricky want a quiet anniversary? the episode where she has to tell the truth? where she can't resist buying a hat and has to make a bet with Ricky to get it? it's brilliant timing and witty.

30 Rock and the Simpsons. Wow. Not very bright are you?

by Anonymousreply 4312/30/2012

You're an asshole, OP. We have a ton of Lucy threads, but you had to start ANOTHER one so you could whine and get attention rather than add your opinion to the other ones.

You don't even know what lowest common denominator means.

by Anonymousreply 4412/30/2012

OP, your post at R40 now proves it. You're stupid.

Let's start with you saying you now concede at 33 you could've seen her in reruns. Your FIRST post said your age was the reason you couldn't see her on TV. Now you act like you don't even remember your excuse for not seeing her, as if you chose not to watch.

As for your "I don't get it" reply to how my comment about your taste and how that makes Lucy funny? It DOESN'T. The shows have no cause and effect on each other. What a stupid thing to say.

And yes, she is sophisticated. After she had the baby on the show, the character transforms. She's stylish and witty. EVERY female comedienne owes a debt to her. She was a powerful woman who made it possible for women to be the stars of a show and make men look weak.

As for us confusing nostalgia with what's funny, your shifting tastes from the Simpsons to Friends to 30 Rock shows that you're superficial, not basing your like of the show on any particular wit.

by Anonymousreply 4512/30/2012

I'm slightly older than the OP, but some of my fondest childhood memories are of watching "I Love Lucy" reruns with my younger sister during summer vacations. We are and were very different, but Lucy was our constant, for a few years.

They used to show 2 episodes back to back on the Fox 5 station in New York starting at 9 AM. Breakfast HAD to be finished, and we were parked in front of that TV for the next hour. We couldn't get enough of it. Acting out episodes, the whole deal. The series was shown in sequence, so we mostly knew what we were going to see the next day, after a probable lifetime of seeing bits and pieces. Watching two episodes a day for all of summer vacation, you'd see the whole series with a little overlap. "Hurry up, the one where they start off for Hollywood is almost on!"

It's funny, the show was probably off the air 30 years before we made a tradition out of it, but it shows that the series stands the test of time. My sister has mentioned that one of her favorite gifts that she got from me as a kid was a VHS copy of Lucy/Desi bloopers, ads and other novelties not usually seen. It was exciting to see other things not part of the series. It was mostly new to us.

"The Long Long Trailer"? Meltdown when it came on on a snowday. "What do you mean, Lucy and Ricky made movies too?" So, I get why some don't like the show, but you have to agree that it's probably more beloved than practically any show ever made.

by Anonymousreply 4612/30/2012

OP is clearly another troll..

The original claim that he's 33 and was too young to see it on TV is a dead giveaway, especially now that he claims to have been aware of cable and reruns.


by Anonymousreply 4712/30/2012

I was going to say he sounds older than 33.

by Anonymousreply 4812/30/2012

And no one here mentions that the show featured a white woman married to an hispanic man.

The hispanic man was portrayed as distinguished and classy (as Arnaz actually was) who was proud of his heritage. The character had a thick accent and occasionally lapsed into Spanish. They were not the usual married couple portrayed in the 1950s.

Pretty ground breaking stuff for the time.

by Anonymousreply 4912/30/2012

[quote] her two solo sitcoms

What are we, chopped liver?

by Anonymousreply 5012/30/2012

It was r49. My grandparents considered it to be a "mixed marriage" and it warmed them up to the idea.

by Anonymousreply 5112/30/2012

OP here. I don't think you people understand what I am saying. I am not old enough to have been alive when her series were airing the first time. Maybe I didn't make that clear enough.

Yes, I know there were repeats, and I never meant to imply there weren't. I watched some with my grandma when I was young. I never sought them out again until last night.

And I acknowledged in my very first post that the show was groundbreaking for its time. My point is that, watching it today, it doesn't hold up. It's shrill and stupid. There is zero wit and zero sophistication.

As for you people bagging on the Simpsons, it's been called the greatest sitcom in the history of TV, by both TIme and EW. It's hugely successful and hugely influential and has added new words to the world's vocabulary.

Lucy may have been great in her day, when people were simpler, TV was largely garbage and there wasn't any competition.

You can call me all the names you want, but nothing I've written here is untrue.

by Anonymousreply 5212/30/2012

I have a similar rule r20, anyone who's an enthusiastic fan of the show is a dork. Some episodes still hold up, most don't. It's fine to like it but those having a meltdown about the OP's opinion are creepy.

by Anonymousreply 5312/30/2012

OP, I wasn't alive when it was airing, either. I was born in the late 60s, and I love I Love Lucy. I think it's hilarious.

The other shows of hers - I don't have much use for. But I Love Lucy is the best.

by Anonymousreply 5412/30/2012

[quote]And she basically pushes her costars out of the way in every scene.

Amen to that, brother.

by Anonymousreply 5512/30/2012

I'm back again, to remind you that I was the "Lucy" of the 90s. I really was!

by Anonymousreply 5612/30/2012

Op has good sitcom creds. ILL just doesn't do it for him. No big deal.

by Anonymousreply 5712/30/2012

R46 Here, OP. You have some points that are valid and many that are not. The Simpsons has been brilliant at times, but I wager rarely in the last ten years. I still have it in my queue, but watch it only occasionally. For you to say there is "zero wit and sophistication" about I Love Lucy is to obviously miss the mark entirely. This opinion of yours is based on watching a few episodes that you turned off? No. your opinion isn't valid if you haven't seen more than a few episodes. The "you people" remark also smacks of trolling, so there's why the backlash.

by Anonymousreply 5812/30/2012

'Lucy may have been great in her day, when people were simpler, TV was largely garbage and there wasn't any competition.'

I am old enough to remember TV in the second half of the 1950s. In many ways, prime time television was more sophisticated back them, with many live drama series from New York, like 'Playhouse 90.' Classical music and Broadway stars were TV royalty (like Mary Martin's 'Peter Pan').

It's true that TV in the 1950s can not compare with HBO/SHO hits like 'The Sopranos' and 'Homeland,' but people weren't simpler and TV was not largely garbage.

'I Love Lucy' is so celebrated that I understand watching several less than great episodes would make you doubt it's reputation. That's fine, absolutely your right.

by Anonymousreply 5912/30/2012

When I read things like:

"'Lucy may have been great in her day, when people were simpler, TV was largely garbage and there wasn't any competition.'"

I mean really, what can one say to such ignorance?

A little info about what is regarded as the "Golden Age of Television":

by Anonymousreply 6012/30/2012

I always thought the show was funny and I always watch it when I catch an episode on tv but I never thought Lucy Ricardo was a likable person. She was a sneaky loathesome bitch.

by Anonymousreply 6112/30/2012

[quote]opinions are like assholes. Everybody's got one.

Except for the "mermaid girl!"

...and then she died.

by Anonymousreply 6212/30/2012

[quote]I'm only 33

Dear lord OP, you are tiresome.

by Anonymousreply 6312/30/2012

It amuses me when people try to pass today's era off as being some Golden Age of Television. A handful of good cable dramas can't mask the numerous networks that are putting out every POS reality show they can think of and cluttering their lineups with it.

The fifties sure had its share of junk, but it was also a time where you could get access to the arts. REAL ARTS. Imagine prime time television showing plays, opera, ballet, and musicals. No glorified karaoke contests back then,

Now, you can't even get networks that were created for the arts to show the arts. Much more stimulating to show real housewives and storage wars.

Golden Age of Television indeed.

by Anonymousreply 6412/30/2012

"She was a sneaky loathsome bitch"

And therein, dear one, lies the essence of comedy:

From Volpone to Ralph Kramden to Larry David, it's the scamps and the schemers who get the laughs.

by Anonymousreply 6512/30/2012

How can you not laugh at Lucy and Ethel ripping each other's dress off while singing Friendship?

by Anonymousreply 6612/30/2012

Fuck you Deb.

by Anonymousreply 6712/30/2012

If the OP had written, 'Lucy may have been great in her day, when people were simpler, TV was largely garbage and there wasn't any competition' in the first comment I would not have bothered with this thread.

He/she has wasted people's time here.

by Anonymousreply 6812/30/2012

R1 nails it. Thread should have been closed at that point.

by Anonymousreply 6912/30/2012

ILL is one of my favorite TV shows of all time. I have all seasons on DVD. As much as I love the show, I have discovered that Lucy ripped off a bunch of bits from 'The Three Stooges', but that doesn't matter. It was a great show. Just watch for Lucy being catty with Carolyn Appleby or Lucy dragging Ethel and sometimes Fred into her schemes. But the key reason why Lucy was so good, was because it was so subversive. While the other sitcom housewives were being subservient to their men, Lucy was calling the shots and rebelling against typical male archetypes.

by Anonymousreply 7012/30/2012

It's interesting that I Love Lucy became such a big hit, yet Joan Davis (I Married Joan) who was doing physical comedy as well didn't have a hit.

by Anonymousreply 7112/30/2012

I love the older episodes when they were still in Manhattan and the episodes in Hollywood are great too. I never fail to laugh at the episode where she lit her fake nose on fire. Hilarious! It was, and still is, a great show. Oh, and when they went to Paris and Lucy wore some hideous haute couture dress made from burlap! The 50s fashions were so fun!

by Anonymousreply 7212/30/2012

"Pacific Coast" Magazine called me "The Lucille Ball of the 80's"!! Boy, were they right!!

by Anonymousreply 7312/30/2012

I Love Lucy does not hold up well in this era, but The Lucy Show, after the move to California when Lucy Carmichael was secretary to Mr. Mooney is still very funny. I don't even remember much about Here's Lucy, probably did not watch it much.

An early show that is really awful is the first Betty White vehicle. IIRC it was called Life with Elizabeth. She is constantly making childish comments, then laughing at it herself, as though that makes it funny. I was amazed at how much I liked the Sue Ann Nivens character because I had thought that she had no talent whatsoever.

by Anonymousreply 7412/30/2012

I am 40 and have never found it funny, one thing I agree with Seinfeld on.

by Anonymousreply 7512/30/2012

R72, the funny thing about Lucy's "Jacques Marcel original" is that with her previous showgirl experience she made it look almost glamorous, feedbag hat and all. One of my favorite eps is THE CHARM SCHOOL, where Lucy lets Viv have the bigger laugh when she's revealed at the door in that fish-tailed, leopard print number.

by Anonymousreply 7612/30/2012

I love that R76. My favorite line from Ethel, "Let's go see Mrs Trumbell so she can get a load of us."

by Anonymousreply 7712/30/2012

Lucy wants to be in the show. Ricky says no. Lucy sneaks in. Ricky finds out. Lucy has some plaining to do.

by Anonymousreply 7812/30/2012

I have often thought that those who can only run something else down in order build themselves or what they like, up, don't have much. Is it because people actually used a dial on phones then that confuses people under 40 or that they didn't need to constantly be on or near a phone every minute of the day? Or is it that they didn't cover themselves with tattoos and piercings? I thought Lucille Ball was OK in her own way, but do like Seinfeld better. There is very little on television in the way of comedy that I find amusing anymore. The most recent funny show to me was Two and a Half Men, but since Charlie Sheen left and Jake "grew up" (with that actor actually denouncing the show that made him a millionaire before he was 21), it needs to be euthanized and none too soon. Actually I found alot of parallels between the Grace Adler character on Will and Grace and Lucy Ricardo on I Love Lucy. Youth is wasted on the young, I guess.

by Anonymousreply 7912/30/2012

Well, she's no Whitney Cummings.

by Anonymousreply 8012/30/2012

I could take ILL or leave it. I get what you're saying OP. But your posts in this thread have been horrible and smug and make posters not want to have a fun debate with you. The vast majority of Americans have a soft spot for ILL. She is a pioneer and a legend, and for good reason.

A more interesting way to start this thread would have been:

I know most people love I Love Lucy. I really want to understand why. I just watched a few eps and found the show to be irritating and shrill and Lucy to be borderline unlikable. Can someone smarter than me tell me what I'm missing? Is it possible the nostalgia effect is why ILL is so beloved? Thanks fellow gays!

by Anonymousreply 8112/30/2012

OP, your gapes match on this one.

If you don't get it, you don't get it. We're sorry popular culture of the recent past is lost to you. Some people simply are - well, like you.


by Anonymousreply 8212/30/2012

As a 50-something eldergay, I wanted to say I feel OP's pain. I grew up watching ILL reruns, but mainly when I was home from school sick for a day. We were not a big Lucy house. Neither of my parents were big on slapstick (and neither am I, though can appreciate its artistry), and we were more likely to watch things like "The Dick Van Dyke Show"--actually, my mother preferred westerns and things like "Combat," which may say something about her. I think we all found Lucy Ricardo kind of crass and loud--in the way that Ralph Kramden could be. My parents were working class, but had worked their way into the middle class, so maybe the prole humor just wasn't all that funny for them. I didn't like "The Honeymooners" when I was a kid, but grew to really admire it as an adult--I think the relationship between Ralph and Alice felt more real, with a blend of complex love and anger, and their lower-class borderline poverty seemed grittier.

At the same time, it isn't the case that we had a dislike of female comic actors--my mother enjoyed Joan Davis and Ann Southern, to name a few, and we watched the more current ones, like That Girl and Bewitched, and Carol Burnett was a Saturday night staple, and both my parents were huge fans of "All in the Family," and appreciated both Jean Stapleton and Carroll O'Connor. My mother never liked Bea Arthur in "Golden Girls"--thought she seemed forced and artificial--but enjoyed her in "Maude."

I do think comedy dates more quickly than drama, simply because it is often topical and more firmly rooted in situations of its time--while you can say that drama is too, somehow it is less at the mercy of the moment.

And I think dragging out the Kardashians, Honey Boo, and Two Broke Girls is missing the point. The Kardashians is more like "Queen for a Day" in some respects, Honey BooBoo an extended and problematic version of "Kids Say the Darndest Things," and every era has crappy sitcoms--how many of the elders on this board mourned the cancellation of such prizes as "The Ugliest Girl in Town" or "Grindl" (as great as Imogene Coca was, this was hardly her finest hour). "Hazel" was a success only because Shirley Booth was one of the most likable actresses in the history of television, stage, and film. I think we are in a bit of a dry spell at the moment, and the most popular sitcoms are primarily a boys' game--"The Big Bang Theory," "The Office" (which has needed to go away since Steve Carrell left), and even the modest success, "The New Normal," which is as much buoyed by the young actress who channeled Little Edie and by Ellen Barkin's complex characterization, despite really unhelpful writing. "30 Rock" had a long run of being smart--it seems to me to owe more to Mary Tyler Moore and the workplace comedy than to Lucille Ball in any of her incarnations.

I think Ball was a talented actress and used her lack of warmth extremely well in earlier movies like "Stage Door," "Dance Girl Dance," and especially "The Big Street," an unsentimental and vanity-free performance. One can hardly blame her for riding the success of the Lucy character as long as she did--the money and adulation must have been impossible to resist, and she became a kind of national icon for generations. But the darker, more interesting side of her got diminished--while it sounds ludicrous to think of her as the mother in "The Manchurian Candidate," if you watch her old RKO movies, you can see how it might have worked, if she were able to recover that part of herself.

As for "Mame" and "The Stone Pillow"--well, as Dickens was known to say, there are things about which we do not speak.

by Anonymousreply 8312/30/2012

The OP loves Joan.

by Anonymousreply 8412/30/2012

Oh I married a clone

No she ain't real

Give her a feel, she ain't real

Oh I married a clone

Love is blind

She's designed

She's my wife

Giddy and homosexual all day

She keeps my dick erect

Never know who the girl has blown

To each his own

Can deny that's why I married a clone.

by Anonymousreply 8512/30/2012

OP is a fucking idiot who thinks he is sooooooo much more sophisticated than everyone else. Let's all give this Special Snowflake our undivided attention.

by Anonymousreply 8612/30/2012

The Paris original burlap outfit was really funny. But Lucy wore any outfit many times that I have never seen anywhere else. She was wearing women's slacks, pedal pushers or whatever they were called, but over that she would wear an ordinary 50's mid-calf flouncy skirt, but it was split in the front and pinned back to each hip, so in the front it looked like an open curtain showing her slacks, while from the back it just looked as though she was wearing an ordinary skirt.

by Anonymousreply 8712/30/2012

I can see how Lucy might have been scary good as the mother in "The Manchurian Candidate," not to take away anything from Angela Lansbury's stellar performance.

by Anonymousreply 8812/30/2012

Fuck Lucy; I love Ethel.

by Anonymousreply 8912/31/2012


Is Fred Mertz

by Anonymousreply 9012/31/2012

Am I the only one who preferred The Lucy Show?

by Anonymousreply 9112/31/2012

Yes you are. The only one. Even Here's Lucy had two people that preferred it, Desi Jr and Lucie

by Anonymousreply 9212/31/2012

[quote]the episode where she has to tell the truth?

Lucy had deliciously catty remarks in that episode. I love the one quote to Carolyn in another episode when they were arguing over whose baby was cuter.

Lucy to Carolyn: "Where do you keep your Baby's cage?"

I also love the episode where Lucy and Ethel are caught in negligees in some guys hotel room. That guy was a hunk too btw.

by Anonymousreply 9312/31/2012

Lucille Ball was pretty - Joan Davis, not so much.

by Anonymousreply 9412/31/2012

Is it just me, or does it seem like there's always a Lucille Ball discussion on DL?

by Anonymousreply 9512/31/2012

Oh the baby pictures episode....

Carolyn has pretty good comebacks when Lucy says little Stevie isn't normal sized. Carolyn says:

"He just seems small to you, because you're used to looking at Little Fatty here!... Oh, Ricky, you're gonna have to go on a diet, or you'll grow up and look like your mommy!"

And Lucy says she hopes Little Ricky doesn't pick up any of Stevie's "good habits" like scratching himself and peeling bananas with his feet.

Good stuff.

by Anonymousreply 9612/31/2012

[quote] like scratching himself and peeling bananas with his feet.

That's racist. Why not say AIDS is from having sex with gorillas?

by Anonymousreply 9712/31/2012

If everyone is very honest, we love Lucy because we grew up watching Lucy.

It's like the folks in the UK who love Mr. Bean or Dad's Army. As outsiders we watch those shows and wonder wtf all the fuss is about, but it's pointless because you had to grow up watching them with Mom to even begin to understand.

by Anonymousreply 9812/31/2012

Holy cow, R97, how is that racist?

by Anonymousreply 9912/31/2012

If Lucy had played the part in Manchurian Candidate with any kind of believability Patty Duke would not have an Oscar.

As for ILL, compared to "Honey Boo Boo" ILL is Shakespeare. But when HBB kills her parents for punishing her, her star will dim momentarily while the Kardashicunts bemoan the declining morality of our time.

by Anonymousreply 10012/31/2012


Calling people apes and monkeys is racist.

by Anonymousreply 10112/31/2012

You are way too sensitive and need to get that chip off your shoulder R101. Calling a baby or child a monkey does not imply it must be a certain color.

by Anonymousreply 10212/31/2012

The real reason we hate OP is that he, like so many his age, wear the "I'm only x years old and so I can't possibly understand what you're talking about because it took place before I was born" "excuse" as a badge of pride. No one thinks it's cute, OP. grow the fuck up.

And you have absolutely no excuse for claiming ignorance of anything that happened before you were born in the age of Google and YouTube.

by Anonymousreply 10312/31/2012

If OP is coming at his statement from the position that he's a TV watcher and likes TV but doesn't get the whole ILL thing then okay. So what, he can't go there.

But OP if you are someone who is an actor or writer and you can't get the ILL thing then you got trouble. Everything we have today is informed by what came before and great actors and writers understand that and use that to make their work great.

by Anonymousreply 10412/31/2012

ILL was far from the only early 1950s sitcom wth a "subversive" female lead whose shenanigans piloted the plots.

While it was certainly the most popular, other similar hit sitcoms included:

MY LITTLE MARGIE with Gale Storm


MY FRIEND IRMA with Marie Wilson

BURNS AND ALLEN with Gracie Allen

And as mentioned above, I MARRIED JOAN with Joan Davis, which was hardly a flop, as it ran a few seasons (often with 30+ episodes each season), which signified a hit in those days.

There was also the hugely popular OUR MISS BROOKS with Eve Arden, though her character, High School teacher Connie Brooks, was more the straight man to the other characters' shenanigans.

I was a huge fan of all of them when I was a little kid, watching them in endless reruns on weekday morning TV. Sadly only ILL, BURNS AND ALLEN and some of I MARRIED JOAN hold up. The rest are now a chore to sit through.

by Anonymousreply 10512/31/2012

I don't think your case holds up, r105. I Love Lucy was subversive because Lucy was living the life of the typical 1950s housewife, with a "lord and master" husband. And she did exactly what she wanted to do, no matter how outrageous it was by 1950s standards.

Gale Storm and Ann Sothern played career girls. Marie Wilson was, to a degree, as well.

Gracie Allen could be called subversive - she did what she wanted, too - but the relationship with her husband was very different (no "lord and master" routine). Her character was not wily and clever as Lucy Ricardo was.

I Married Joan was always just a second-rate imitation of I Love Lucy. Joan Davis was a decent second-banana in films, but didn't have what it took to be a star in a series.

by Anonymousreply 10612/31/2012

The shows you list, r105, owed an enormous debt to ILL.

by Anonymousreply 10712/31/2012

R102, you are correct.

Racist indeed.

Chimpanzees are our closest living relatives and anyone who doesn't believe so probably also thinks the world is only about 10,000 years old.

My family was terribly dysfunctional, so even as a small child watching reruns of ILL, I realized that the zany Ricardo clan was a solid, loving middle class family pursuing and realizing the American dream. Fred and Ethel never had to knock or call in advance; they were part of an extended family. True friends like the characters Bill Frawley and Vivian Vance portrayed are exceedingly rare.

I suspect that those aspects of ILL have a wide appeal on a subconscious level.

I'm also glad that someone on here wisely pointed out, via another individual, that Lucille Ball was not Lucy Ricardo.

by Anonymousreply 10812/31/2012

Gracie Allen's character was not AS wily or clever as Lucy Ricardo's, but many episodes involved her trying to trick, fool, manipulate or keep something from husband George, often in cahoots with best pal Blanche Morton.

by Anonymousreply 10912/31/2012

I like the physical comedy of the early "I Love Lucy" as well as the terrific essemble. Vivian Vance was wonderful.

But after that, I do not think any of Lucille Ball's shows were funny and I found her vibe or aura, nasty. I always felt her characters were put ons- and as I learned more about her, I think I am right. She was not a nice women and like a lot of people, it showed.

But her early shows were wonderful- my guess is due to Desi who was the creative force behind them.

by Anonymousreply 11012/31/2012

Will & Grace was an exact takeoff of I Love Lucy, including the whacky red-head and the sober dark-haired partner.

by Anonymousreply 11112/31/2012

If Margie Albright had a career and earned her own money, she sure fooled me.

by Anonymousreply 11212/31/2012

Sorry, was thinking of the other one, where Gale Storm was a cruise director on a ship.

by Anonymousreply 11312/31/2012

I Love Lucy had the perfect ensemble. Lucy was over-the-top, but they offset that with Vivian Vance, whose dry delivery was the perfect counterpoint to Lucy's shenanigans. Lucy lucked out when Desi got her Vance - she WOULD have been insufferable on her own, but together with Vance, they were magic.

by Anonymousreply 11412/31/2012

The first great ensemble on television, hard to imagine without any of the four.

by Anonymousreply 11512/31/2012

r113 that was Gale Storm on Oh, Susannah! with the inimitable Zasu Pitts as her sidekick.

Zasu's character was the ship's manicurist.....IIRC her name was Elvira Nugent and Susie called her Nugie.

by Anonymousreply 11612/31/2012

Everyone is allowed their opinion.

by Anonymousreply 11712/31/2012

Everyone is allowed his opinion.

People are allowed their opinions.

by Anonymousreply 11812/31/2012

I LOVED 'I Love Lucy.' But not Ball's other sitcoms.

It took me a while but I realized the differencew was (duh!) Ricky!

Lucy was funny b/c she always dreaded Ricky finding out what she'd done.

I never cared that Mr. Mooney was going to blow a gasket.

by Anonymousreply 11912/31/2012

I'm 57 and I never liked Lucy. She was so annoying and yes, she acted like she was retarded. She was always trying to get into Ricky's show. She would go to incredible lengths just to mug across the stage for 30 seconds. After the first time she dressed like Harpo Marx or a tobacco-chewing gunslinger, why wasn't she satisfied? She got onstage, it was a disaster, why keep doing it?

One of my bet friends in the 90s was 10 years younger than I and she was obsessed with ILL. She would buy 1950s Lucy-style clothing at vintage clothing shops. Her favorite jacket was one that looked one of Lucy's maternity tops. Which was strange because she was neither pregnant nor fat.

by Anonymousreply 12012/31/2012

I remember being shocked at about 4 years of age when my mother casually mentioned that Gale Storm was dead while i was watching Oh Susannah. No she's not, I said. She's right there. I can see her. If she was dead, she would be invisible. My mother said no, she's dead and so is Zasu Pitts. That was the last straw. Somebody's trying to fuck with my 4 year old brain, I thought. All dead people go away to heaven and become invisible.

My mother tried to explain that TV shows weren't really happening while I was watching them. Some of them were filmed years ago and were now being "rerun."

I never watched Oh Susannah again. I would get up and go into my room to play. I didn't understand how it could be possible these people were no longer alive, but I didn't want dead people looking at me from inside the tv.

by Anonymousreply 12112/31/2012

BTW, Gale Storm wasn't dead. My mother later told me she had confused her with another sitcom actress of the time

by Anonymousreply 12212/31/2012

So the Gale Storm crisis was a tempest in a teapot, eh, R122?

As a shameless shill for the unfairly-forgotten work of Wally Cox, I recommend the DVDs of MR. PEEPERS to anyone who would like to see a great '50s sit-com star doing the opposite of Lucy. Where Lucy did any crazy thing for a laugh, Cox looked for humor that sprang naturally from believable circumstances. Where Lucy was always going for big yuks, Cox aimed for warm chuckles and delayed laughs from subtle jokes that take a moment to sink in.

by Anonymousreply 12312/31/2012

Marlon Brando loved Wally's cox.

by Anonymousreply 12412/31/2012

[quote]She got onstage, it was a disaster, why keep doing it?

More often when she got onstage, she was great. It was the great "lie" of the concept, that Lucy Ricardo didn't have any talent - and then shed do things like the dance routine with Van Johnson - or dancing with the Ricky dummy - where she was terrific.

by Anonymousreply 12512/31/2012

Lucy is even terrific in the very first episode ever when she performs as Sally Sweet to Ricky's Cuban Pete.

by Anonymousreply 12601/01/2013

The writing on ILL was not consistent. Sometimes it was quick and whitty, other times it was too childish and silly. With the excellent timing the actors had, especially Lucy, can you imagine how good it could have been with better writers.

by Anonymousreply 12701/01/2013

The overall writing on ILL is far superior than most early sitcoms.

I love Eve Arden & Ann Sothern just as much as Lucy, but OUR MISS BROOKS and PRIVATE SECRETARY are really dissapointing, considering the comedic chops of the two ladies. In the '40s, nobody could deliver a smart line with more snap than Eve and Ann, but the writing on their shows was painfully lame and witness.

I have yet to take in I MARRIED JOAN. I love Joan Davis as well, and her show is a blatant ripoff of ILL. To those who have seen it, how does I MARRIED JOAN hold up?

by Anonymousreply 12801/01/2013

r128, please check out my assessment at r105.

I think Joan Davis was actually a funnier woman than Lucille Ball.

by Anonymousreply 12901/01/2013

Thank you, r105! I missed your earlier post.

What episodes of I MARRIED JOAN stand out for you?

by Anonymousreply 13001/01/2013

If anyone is interested, all six seasons of "I Love Lucy" are now available on Hulu.

by Anonymousreply 13101/01/2013

[quote]What episodes of I MARRIED JOAN stand out for you?

Do you remember on the Dick Van Dyke Show when Mary Tyler Moore sneaked a peek into a mysterious package and a self-inflating rubber life raft burst forth into the living room? Joan Davis did the same bit years earlier. Only she did it in a closet and the life raft inflated vertically pushing her up and pinning her to the closet ceiling. She had to puncture the raft to free herself and her husband was dreadfully upset over its loss.

There was something vaguely creepy about the way Joan Stevens lived in constant fear that her hubby, Judge Bradley Stevens, would stop loving her and turn her out of his house without a penny. On the other hand, she was grating enough that you could see how he might be tempted.

Joan had a grown daughter, Beverly Wills, who played her kid sister. Joan died of a heart attack at age 53 in 1961. Tragically, Beverly died two years later in the same house in a fire she caused by smoking in bed. Her two young sons and Joan's mother also died in the fire.

by Anonymousreply 13201/02/2013

All I can say is, I had a huge little boy crush on Jim Backus as Judge Bradley Stevens.

by Anonymousreply 13301/02/2013

Our local station that runs ILL at noon, has a commercial running where she is spliced into about a half a dozen sitcoms under the theory that there is a little Lucy in every sitcom. It is sort of true and I'd bet money someone has done a dissertation on just that.

by Anonymousreply 13401/02/2013

It was the WRITING that made ILL.

If you listen to old radio shows of My Favorite Husband, you can see the scripts are just as funny. In fact a lot of ILL is taken word for word from those scripts.

The scenes are just as funny, with Gale Gordon in the Fred part, Bea Benaderet,in the Ethel part, and Richard Denning and Lucille Ball had more chemistry than Ball had with her real life husband Desi.

by Anonymousreply 13501/02/2013

She's embarrassingly bad and dated, Roseanne is much better.

by Anonymousreply 13601/02/2013

Ever thought that certain users who post bad comments on icons are actually jealous celebrities posing behind some other names?

by Anonymousreply 13708/14/2013

Maybe Rosanne started this thread!

by Anonymousreply 13808/14/2013

a loud shrill man acting like a retard, greetings to datalounge, ya damn loud shrill gay man.

by Anonymousreply 13908/14/2013

I mean, Roseanne

by Anonymousreply 14008/14/2013

Roseanne's back

by Anonymousreply 14108/14/2013

Simmer down Roseanne!

by Anonymousreply 14208/14/2013

Nostalgia is a very powerful thing.

by Anonymousreply 14308/14/2013

I used to like Lucille Ball until I discovered that was a total cunt.

by Anonymousreply 14408/14/2013

Roseanne please simmer down

by Anonymousreply 14508/14/2013

Certain users that make bad comments on celebrities may be other jealous celebrities posing behind some other names

by Anonymousreply 14608/14/2013

You know, other jealous celebrities that are not Roseanne might be here

by Anonymousreply 14708/14/2013

Most of my favorite ILLs featured Vivian Vance. I always thought Vivian's presence provided the backbone that show (as well as The Lucy Show) needed. You're only as good as your co-stars.

The exception is the Vitameatavegamin episode. You can't watch that without appreciating Lucille Ball's comic timing.

by Anonymousreply 14808/14/2013

The first I Love Lucy episode that really made me laugh was the episode where Lucy becomes a sculptress.

At the end of the episode, she tries to make a bust of her head and con everyone that she sculpted it herself, but accidentally ends up getting clay all over her face, so she gets under the table and puts her head through and pretends to be the bust.

by Anonymousreply 14908/15/2013

I grew up in the 80s and kids of my generation all watched I Love Lucy in syndication. Loved that show, and the early years of The Lucy Show were good too, but the quality diminished in the later seasons. Here's Lucy was practically unwatchable.

by Anonymousreply 15008/15/2013

You and Lucie Aranz

by Anonymousreply 15103/29/2014

Lucky, lucky, the lucky show

(Starring Lucy)

Lucky, lucky, the lucky show

If you were Lucy

You'd have money and therefore you'd be Lucky

The Lucky Show

Starring Vivian Williams and Vance Frawely...

by Anonymousreply 15203/29/2014

ILL was conceived as a means of salvaging the Ball-Arnaz marriage. He was always on the road with the band and she was starring in movies. The fact that the show became the #1 show of all time is a phenomenon in and of itself. Also, at the same time they were becoming parents for the first time. They even used her second pregnancy ( Desi Jr. ) as a continuing focus plot line during the SECOND/ THIRD seasons. They were inventing the TV sit=com format as they went along. They borrowed routines and techniques from the movies, as she had been in movies since the early 30's. She and Desi, Sr. knew all of the Hollywood Community and used them on various episodes. The Hollywood Community was thrilled to be part of the show. Even Aaron Spelling had a brief stint in one episode. If every episode wasn't top drawer ........ There were enough episodes that stand the test of time. The chemistry of the four principals (Ball Arnaz Vance and Frawley) contributed to the final product immeasurably. The use of the occassional recurring actors in recurring parts ( Mrs. Trumble, Carolyn/Lillian Appleby, etc.) was handled expertly. The stress of producing a weekly show in a developing medium must have been daunting. Besides dealing with the ratings. In sum, I would give ILL the credit it deserves to everyone who contributed, in front of and behind the cameras. The later Lucy vehicles existed only in order to give Ball something to do. Most episodes of TLS and HL are hardly worth the effort. The last show LWL is just sad.

by Anonymousreply 15309/06/2015

I just ordered the ILL Complete Series dvds from Amazon, all thanks to this thread.

by Anonymousreply 15409/06/2015

I hate the Vivian Vance troll please block him.

by Anonymousreply 15509/06/2015
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