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2019

netflix

The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour - Netflix

"The Lucy–Desi Comedy Hour" was a collection of thirteen black-and-white one-hour specials airing occasionally from 1957 to 1960

The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour - Netflix

Type: Scripted

Languages: English

Status: Ended

Runtime: 60 minutes

Premier: 1957-11-06

The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour - The Lucy Show - Netflix

The Lucy Show is an American sitcom that aired on CBS from 1962–68. It was Lucille Ball's follow-up to I Love Lucy. A significant change in cast and premise for the fourth season (1965-1966) divides the program into two distinct eras; aside from Ball, only Gale Gordon, who joined the program for its second season, remained. For the first three seasons, Vivian Vance was the co-star. The earliest scripts were entitled The Lucille Ball Show, but when this title was rejected by CBS, producers thought of calling the show This Is Lucy or The New Adventures of Lucy, before deciding on the title The Lucy Show. Ball won consecutive Emmy Awards as Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for the series' final two seasons, 1966–67 and 1967–68.

The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour - Premise - Netflix

In the fall of 1964, though CBS began to broadcast sporting events and cartoons in color, they still refused to broadcast The Lucy Show in color. Through that year ownership of color TV sets grew, and several other manufacturers began making color equipment and color TV sets. At the beginning of the 1964–65 season, The Lucy Show went through a significant staff change. Elliott Lewis left the series as executive producer and was replaced by Jack Donohue, who served as producer and director. With the absence of Carroll, Martin, Weiskopf, and Schiller, Ball hired veteran comedy writer Milt Josefsberg, who had written for Jack Benny, as script consultant. Under Josefsberg's supervision there were no permanent writers for the series and different writers were employed each week (among them, Garry Marshall). Ball persuaded Weiskopf and Schiller to return and write four installments. There were further changes to the series. Vance reduced the number of episodes in which she appeared to spend more time on the East Coast with her new husband, literary editor John Dodds. Lucille Ball's friend Ann Sothern made a number of appearances during 1964 and 1965 as the “Countess Framboise” (née Rosie Harrigan) to fill Vance's absence. The Countess, who had been widowed by the death of her husband, “who left her his noble title and all of his noble debts,” was always trying to get money to pay off her debts. She also did battle with Mr. Mooney, whom she called “Mr. Money”. Because it was known that Vance would be leaving the series, Sothern was proposed as the new co-star, but it was not to be. Sothern wanted to share top billing with Ball. This was not acceptable to Ball and, though Sothern did make three more guest appearances during the following (1965–66) season, the idea of making her a series regular was abandoned.

In the first episode of the 4th season, Lucy and Jerry Carmichael and Mr. Mooney moved from Danfield to California, where Lucy began working for Mr. Mooney at the bank, first part-time, and then full-time. Lucy's daughter Chris was said to have gone away to college and was not mentioned again. It was explained that Vance's character (Vivian Bagley) remarried and that she, along with her son Sherman and her new husband, remained in Danfield, although she would return for a few guest appearances towards the end of the series' run. With Candy Moore and Ralph Hart having already left the show at this point, only Jimmy Garrett was retained, but he would make only two appearances to support the transition before he, too, was phased out of the series. This procedure was later explained by Oscar Katz, one of Desilu's vice presidents. According to Katz, “If you go into a network with the same series but a radically changed format, the contracts allow for greater financial renegotiation.” Candy Moore adds, “By dropping all of us at once, Desilu was able to get a lot more money out of CBS for the continuation of The Lucy Show.” In the fourth season premiere episode, “Lucy at Marineland”, Jerry was quickly shipped off to a military academy. He made one final appearance, in a Christmas-themed episode, midway in the 1965–66 season. Sothern made three more guest appearances as the Countess, and Joan Blondell guest-starred in two episodes as Lucy's new friend Joan Brenner. However, Ball felt there was no chemistry between her and Blondell. Finally, Lucy gained a new best friend, Mary Jane Lewis (Mary Jane Croft). Croft had prior experience performing with Ball and was the wife of former executive producer Elliott Lewis. In 1954, she made her first appearance on I Love Lucy playing Cynthia Harcourt, a rich, haughty friend of Lucy Ricardo in the episode “Lucy Is Envious”. In 1956, she returned to the series playing Evelyn Bigsby, a bewildered traveler seated next to Lucy on an airplane in the fifth season finale, “Return Home from Europe”. During the 1950s, Croft also had occasional roles on I Married Joan and Our Miss Brooks. She was also the voice of Cleo, the basset hound in the sitcom The People's Choice. In 1957, Croft joined the cast of I Love Lucy during its final season playing Lucy Ricardo's new friend and neighbor Betty Ramsey for the program's last thirteen episodes. Croft then portrayed Lucy Carmichael's friend Audrey Simmons during the 1962–64 episodes of The Lucy Show. In the third season, with the departure of Elliott Lewis as executive producer, Croft had also left the series, although her character of Audrey was still referred to in a few episodes but never seen. At this time, Croft had also been a regular for ten years on the long-running ABC-TV sitcom The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, which was in its final year of production in 1965. In returning to The Lucy Show in the fall of 1965 as a new character, Croft was clearly replacing Vance as Lucy's cohort and comrade; she did not, however, get co-star billing – like Roy Roberts, who played Mooney's boss at the bank, she received featured billing despite playing a regular character. In the fall of 1965, CBS began broadcasting all programming in color, but continued to produce some programming in black and white. By January 1966, all references to Lucy Carmichael's children, her trust fund, and her former life in Danfield were dropped. Lucy Carmichael was firmly established as a single woman living in Los Angeles. Lucy worked in films disguised as stunt man “'Iron Man' Carmichael” for three episodes (“Lucy the Stunt Man”, “Lucy and the Return of Iron Man”, and “Lucy and Bob Crane”). At the end of the 1965–66 season Lucille Ball was nominated for her second Emmy for The Lucy Show as Best Actress in a Comedy Series, however, Mary Tyler Moore took home the trophy for her role as Laura Petrie for The Dick Van Dyke Show. The next two seasons featured many stars making guest appearances as themselves conducting business at Lucy's bank. For the last two seasons, Vivian Vance made three guest appearances in her role as Vivian Bagley (except it was now Vivian Bunson, as her character had gotten married again when Lucy Carmichael moved to California). Interestingly, in all three episodes in which Viv visited Lucy, there were passing references to their former life in Danfield as well as Viv's new husband, but no mention was made about any of their children. In the fifth-year episode “Lucy Gets Caught Up In The Draft”, Lucy Carmichael receives a letter from her son, who is away in military school. In that installment, he is called Jimmy, not Jerry. During the filming of that particular show, Ball was constantly being corrected by her crew saying that the son's name was Jerry and that Jimmy Garrett had played that part and that was the reason for her being confused. However, Ball refused to listen and so the error stayed in and that was the last reference to Lucy Carmichael's son. For the 1966–1967 season, Gale Gordon was nominated for an Emmy Award as Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, but lost to Don Knotts. Maury Thompson received a nomination for Best Directing in a Comedy Series and is the only Lucy director ever to receive a nomination in the directing category. After eleven years, Ball was finally awarded an Emmy as “Best Actress in a Comedy Series” (she had previously won two, as “Best Comedienne” in 1953 and as “Best Actress in a Continuing Performance” in 1956 for I Love Lucy). During the 1967–68 season, Ball's second husband, Gary Morton, became executive producer of The Lucy Show. Lucille Ball sold Desilu Productions to Gulf+Western Industries, abandoning ownership of the series. In the spring of 1968, The Lucy Show won Emmy nominations for Best Comedy Series, Milt Josefsberg for Best Writing in a Comedy Series, Lucille Ball for Best Actress in a Comedy Series, and Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (Gordon). This time, Gordon lost the award to Werner Klemperer of Hogan's Heroes, and the show itself lost the Best Comedy Series Award to the NBC sitcom Get Smart. For the second straight year, Ball was awarded the coveted statuette. At the end of its sixth season, The Lucy Show posted its highest Nielsen rating, ranking at #2. After six seasons, Ball decided to end the series, feeling that the show had enough episodes for syndication. Ball opted to continue on television under the provision that her two children, Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr., agreed to appear alongside her. Thus, in the fall of 1968, an entirely new series, Here's Lucy, debuted. This series featured her and her children, as well as Gordon, Croft, and Vance in occasional guest appearances as new characters which were similar to their characters on the former series. Like I Love Lucy and The Lucy Show, Here's Lucy ran on CBS for six seasons.

The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour - References - Netflix