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The Lucy Show: The Official First Season [4 Discs] [DVD]

Release Date:07/21/2009

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    Special Features

    • New interview with Lucie Arnaz
    • New interview with Jimm Garrett
    • Clips from "Opening Night" special
    • Vintage openings
    • Vintage closings
    • Cast commercials
    • Vintage network promos
    • Flubs
    • Cast biographies
    • Production notes
    • "The Lucy Show" vintage merchandise
    • Closed Captioned


    Lucille Ball proves that her two-year absence from network television has not in any way blunted her comic expertise as The Lucy Show launches its first season. The episodes herein are pleasantly schizophrenic, with widowed mother Lucy Carmichael (Ball, of course) harvesting new comedy opportunities out of such situations as attracting eligible bachelors, raising money to augment her allowance, and wrestling with the trials and tribulations of single motherhood with daughter Chris (Candy Moore) and son Jerry (Jimmy Garrett), and at the same time capturing the carefree zaniness of the I Love Lucy days, vis-à-vis Lucy's misadventures with best her friend and housemate, divorcée Vivian Bagley, played by Ball's former I Love Lucy co-star Vivian Vance. For her part, Viv Bagley also must be both mother and father to her own kid Sherman (Ralph Hart) -- who, fortuitously enough, is Jerry Carmichael's best friend. On the "dating" front, things get off to a fine start with the series' second episode, in which Lucy and Viv finagle Jerry's math teacher (William Windom) into escorting both of them to a Saturday night dance; in later episodes, Lucy will try to win a guy (Frank Aletter) away from Viv by feigning an interest in classical music, and will go gaga over her new boss (John Vivyan) when she takes a temporary job as a society columnist. (Incidentally, Dick Martin of Rowan & Martin fame is seen throughout this season as Harry Conners, Lucy's next-door neighbor and occasional boyfriend.) As for her money-raising schemes, Lucy inaugurates her well-meaning torture of Mr. Barnsahl (Charles Lane), the banker handling her late husband's estate, when she accidentally writes a donation check for two thousand dollars and then goes to great and hilarious lengths to cover up the gaping hole in her bank account. And in a classic episode reminiscent of I Love Lucy at its best, Lucy and Viv set up a "factory" in their kitchen to mass-produce Viv's caramel corn recipe. Finally, our heroines gently intrude upon their offspring's private lives by making a big production of waiting for Chris' return from a date and becoming a public spectacle while refereeing Jerry and Ralph's football game; and best of all, Lucy imitates Charlie Chaplin in a comedy sketch staged for Chris' classmates. And on a pure slapstick-force level, few of the Lucy Show episodes can match the hilarity of the first-season episode in which Lucy and Viv become volunteer firemen, or the one in which Lucy takes singing lessons from guest star Hans Conried to qualify for a neighborhood barbershop quartet, or the installment wherein Lucy finds herself "driving" a dump truck. The first-season ratings of The Lucy Show proved beyond doubt that America still loved Lucy: her series ranked as the fourth most popular TV show in the country, sharing this honor with the popular Bonanza. ~ Hal Erickson

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