Happy 40th Anniversary!
Jerry, Lucy, Chris, Sherman & Viv...
... and all the artists and craftsmen who worked with Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz, Vivian Vance, Candy Moore, Jimmy Garrett and Ralph Hart to make THE LUCY SHOW one of the most successful television series of the 1960s.
Forty years ago this week, on Monday, October 1, 1962, Lucy and Viv returned to television (after a two-season absence), and very quickly reclaimed their spot atop the Nielsen ratings... The first episode, "Lucy Waits Up for Chris," introduced audiences to Lucy Carmichael and Vivian Bagley, two middle-aged best friends who share a home in suburban New York. Lucy, a widow, is the mother of two children, Chris and Jerry, and Viv, a divorcee, has a young son, Sherman.
Lucy Carmichael -- like her predecessor, Lucy Ricardo -- had her own unique way of getting herself into -- and out of -- unusual situations... In the opening show, for example, she not plays hostess to a neighbor's sheep dog (see photo, below), but gets herself locked out of her house in the middle of the night, and, dressed only in pajamas, tries to get back in by bouncing on a trampoline into a second-story window!
Desi Arnaz served as executive-producer of the first 11 episodes of THE LUCY SHOW, before retiring from the presidency of Desilu in November, 1962. Elliott Lewis served as producer, and Jack Donohue as director. Scripts were by Bob Carroll Jr., Madelyn Martin, Bob Weiskopf & Bob Schiller, and were based, in part, on characters created by Irene Kampen in her 1961 "autobiographical novel," LIFE WITHOUT GEORGE.
THE LUCY SHOW was in production 6 seasons, 3 with this original "domestic" format, and 3 more with Lucy working in a Los Angeles bank for Theodore J. Mooney (portrayed by Gale Gordon, who joined the series in 1963). (The show ended only to make possible yet a third Lucille Ball series, HERE'S LUCY.) Reruns of THE LUCY SHOW ran on CBS Daytime for many years, and were subsquently released in syndication by Paramount TV.
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