I Love Lucy cast


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I Love Lucy on DVD:

I Love Lucy - The Complete First Season

Buy I Love Lucy - The Complete First Season on DVD
I Love Lucy - The Complete Second Season

Buy I Love Lucy - The Complete Second Season on DVD
I Love Lucy - The Complete Third Season

Buy I Love Lucy - The Complete Third Season on DVD
I Love Lucy - The Complete Fourth Season

Buy I Love Lucy - The Complete Fourth Season on DVD
I Love Lucy - The Complete Fifth Season

Buy I Love Lucy - The Complete Fifth Season on DVD
I Love Lucy - The Complete Sixth Season

Buy I Love Lucy - The Complete Sixth Season on DVD
I Love Lucy - The Complete Seventh-Ninth Seasons (The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour)

Buy I Love Lucy - The Complete Seventh-Ninth Seasons on DVD
I Love Lucy - The Complete Series

Buy I Love Lucy - The Complete Series on DVD
I Love Lucy - Ultimate Season 1 (Blu-ray)

Buy I Love Lucy - Ultimate Season 1 on Blu-ray

Read our reviews:

Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4 / Season 5 / Season 6

Ultimate Season 1 (Blu-ray)


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Message Board:

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Photo Gallery:

I Love Lucy Photo Gallery / Lucille Ball Photo Gallery


Broadcast History:

First Telecast: October 15, 1951
Last Telecast: September 24, 1961

Oct 1951-Jun 1957, CBS Mon 9:00-9:30 (OS)
Apr 1955-Oct 1955, CBS Sun 6:00-6:30
Oct 1955-Apr 1956, CBS Sat 6:30-7:00
Sep 1957-May 1958, CBS Wed 7:30-8:00
Jul 1958-Sep 1958, CBS Wed 7:30-8:00
Oct 1958-May 1959, CBS Thu 7:30-8:00
Jul 1959-Sep 1959, CBS Fri 8:30-9:00
Sep 1961, CBS Sun 6:30-7:00

Total number of episodes: 180


Cast:

Lucille Ball as Lucy Ricardo - Lucille Ball Photo Gallery
Desi Arnaz
as Ricky Ricardo
Vivian Vance
as Ethel Mertz
William Frawley
as Fred Mertz
Richard Keith
as Little Ricky Ricardo (1956-1957)
Jerry Hausner
as Jerry, the agent (1951-1954, occasional)
Elizabeth Patterson
as Mrs. Mathilda Trumbull (1953-1956)
Doris Singleton
as Caroline Appleby (1953-1957)
Kathryn Card
as Mrs. MacGillicuddy (1955-1956)
Mary Jane Croft
as Betty Ramsey (1957)
Frank Nelson
as Ralph Ramsey (1957)


Theme Song:

"I Love Lucy," by Harold Adamson and Eliot Daniel

Download the I Love Lucy opening theme song
Download the I Love Lucy opening theme song (short version)

Download the I Love Lucy ending theme song in wav format
Download the I Love Lucy closing theme song in MP3 format
Download the I Love Lucy opening theme song in MIDI format
Download the I Love Lucy opening theme song in MP3 format
Download Desi Arnaz singing I Love Lucy

Television's Greatest Hits, Vol. 1 CD

Television's Greatest Hits, Vol. 1 CD

Includes the I Love Lucy theme song - 65 total tv themes

For more information and to purchase from Amazon.com:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000000GOI/ref=nosim/happydaysonline


Video Clips:

Download the I Love Lucy opening in MPG format
Download the I Love Lucy animated opening in MPG format


Series Summary:

I Love Lucy logo

Lucille Ball had spent three seasons on CBS radio as the female lead in the situation comedy My Favorite Husband when she decided to give the new medium, television, a try. In her radio role as Liz Cooper, she perfected many of the mannerisms that she would use in I Love Lucy, including the scatterbrained quality and the loud crying fits when things weren't going her way. CBS was enthusiastic about the concept of the show, but the network nabobs had two major objections--they were positive nobody would believe Desi was her husband (despite the fact that they were married in real life), and they wanted the show done live from New York, like most of the other early television comedies. Lucy was determined to use Desi and had no desire to commute from Hollywood to New York for the show. In the summer of 1950 the two of them went on tour performing before live audiences to prove that Desi was believable as her husband, and early in 1951 they produced a film pilot for the series with $5,000 of their own money. The pilot convinced the CBS brass that they had something special and I Love Lucy was given a berth on the fall schedule.

The premise of I Love Lucy was not that much different from that of other family situation comedies on television and radio--a wacky wife making life difficult for a loving but perpetually irritated husband--but the people involved made it something very special. Lucy Ricardo was an American of Scottish ancestry (maiden name MacGillicuddy) married to a Cuban bandleader. Husband Ricky was employed at the Tropicana Club and since she was constantly trying to prove to him that she could be in show business too, he spent much of his time trying to keep Lucy off the nightclub's stage. Ricky just wanted her to be a simple housewife. Whenever he became particularly exasperated with one of her schemes, Ricky's already broken English would degenerate into a stream of Spanish epithets. The Tropicana Club was in Manhattan, and so was the Ricardo apartment, in a middle-class building in the East Sixties where their neighbors, best friends, and landlords were Fred and Ethel Mertz. Lucy's partner in mischief was Ethel, and both Ricky and Fred had to endure the foolishness perpetrated by their wives.

I Love Lucy was an immediate smash hit and during its six years in originals, never ranked lower than third in popularity among all television programs. The plots, by series creator and producer Jess Oppenheimer and writers Madelyn Pugh and Bob Carroll, Jr., were superb, the gags were inventive, and Lucy's clowning the piece de resistance that took I Love Lucy beyond the realm of other contemporary comedies. As wacky as she was, audiences could emphathize with and adore her. Watching I Love Lucy in the early 1950s became as much a part of life as watching Milton Berle's Texaco Star Theater had been in the late 1940s. It was a national event when, on January 19, 1953, Lucy Ricard gave birth to Little Ricky on the air, the same night that Lucille Ball gave birth to her second child, Desiderio Alberto Arnaz IV.

Over the years, within the context of the show, Ricky became more successful. He got a movie offer that prompted a cross-country trip by car with the Mertzes, during the 1954-1955 season. During the 1955-1956 season they took a trip to Europe, also with the Mertzes, and at the start of the 1956-1957 season Ricky opened his own club, the Ricky Ricardo Babaloo Club. He had also gotten a TV show and, with his good fortune, bought a country home in Connecticut early in 1957. It was also during the 1956-1957 season that little Ricky was added to the regular cast. He had been played on an occasional basis in the previous seasons by a pair of infant twins, Joseph David Mayer and Michael Lee Mayer. Also seen on an irregular basis over the years were Ricky's agent Jerry, the Ricardos' elderly neighbor Mrs. Trumbull, Lucy's snooty friend Caroline Appleby, and Mrs. MacGillicuddy, Lucy's mother.

Everyone has certain favorite episodes of I Love Lucy, and there were so many memorable ones that trying to cite the "best" is particularly difficult. Even CBS executives had problems doing it. During the summer of 1958 there was a collection of reruns titled The Top Ten Lucy Shows--there were 13 different episodes in that "top 10." There was the show in which Lucy maneuvered her way onto Ricky's TV show to do a health-tonic commercial, and got drunk sampling the high-alcohol-content product. There was the time she tried to bake her own bread, and was pinned to the far wall of her kitchen when the loaf--into which she had thrown two entire packages of yeast--was released from the oven. While looking for souvenirs to take back to New York from their trip to Hollywood, Lucy and Ethel tried to pry loose the block of cement with John Wayne's footprints from in front of Grauman's Chinese Theatre. There was the time Lucy tried to get into Ricky's nightclub show by impersonating a clown. When they were going to be interviewed on the TV show Face to Face they almost got into a fight with the Mertzes because Ricky's new agent wanted them to move into a classier apartment. The messiest episode, however, had to be the one that was part of their trip to Europe. Lucy had been offered a minor role in a film by an Italian producer and, in an effort to absorb atmosphere, ended up in a vat of unpressed grapes fighting with a professional grape stomper.

The success of I Love Lucy is unparalleled in the history of television. The decision to film it, rather than do it live, made it possible to have a high-quality print of each episode available for endless rebroadcasts, as opposed to the poor quality kinescopes of live shows. The reruns, sold to independent stations after I Love Lucy left the network, and translated into virtually every language for foreign distribution, made millions. This set the pattern for all of television. The appeal of reusable filmed programs, all started by I Love Lucy, eventually resulted in the shift of television production from New York, where it had all started, to Hollywood, where the film facilities were. I Love Lucy was practically unique in that it was filmed before a live audience, something that did not become widespread in the situation comedy world until the 1970s, and the technique of simultaneously using thee cameras during the filming to allow for editing of the finished product was also a Lucy first.

By the end of the 1956-1957 season, despite the fact it was still the number one program in all of television, I Love Lucy ceased production as weekly series. For the two years prior to the suspension of production, both Lucy and Desi had been seeking to cut down on their workload. They finally succeeded. After the fall of 1957 there was no I Love Lucy, but there was a number of Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Shows, full-hour specials about the continuing travels and tribulations of the Ricardos and the Mertzes. Reruns of I Love Lucy had aired during the summer of 1955 as The Sunday Lucy Show and during the 1955-1956 season on Saturdays as The Lucy Show. With the original show out of production, prime-time reruns of I Love Lucy were aired for another two years on CBS, showed up briefly in 1961, and ran in daytime on CBS until 1967. The syndicated reruns have been running continuously ever since, and there is no end in sight.

Series summary from The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows: 1946-Present


Did You Know?

The "valentine" opening credits seen in syndication were *not* the original opening credits. When the series originally aired on CBS, the credits featured animated stick figures of Lucy and Desi along with the sponsor's product--Phillip Morris cigarettes, for instance. The "valentine" credits were added when CBS began rerunning the series in 1958.

References to the series' original sponsor, Phillip Morris, can still be seen in some episodes today. Most notable is the scene in "Lucy Does a TV Commercial" in which Lucy dresses up as Johnny the Bellhop, the Phillip Morris icon.

Bea Benederet and Gale Gordon were Lucy and Desi's first choice to play the Mertzes.

Desi Arnaz invented the rerun during the pregnancy episodes of this series by re-airing some episodes from the first season to give Lucy some rest.

When Lucy was pregnant with Little Ricky, network censors wouldn't permit her to say "pregnant." She had to say "expectant".

You won't hear the word "lucky" in "I Love Lucy." Phillip Morris, the sponsor, forbade it because they did not want their audience thinking of their main cigarrette rival, "Lucky Strikes."

I Love Lucy was one of the first TV shows to be filmed, in Hollywood, at a time when many shows were done live in New York. It pioneered the use of three cameras simultaneously, and the results were high-quality prints of a classic comedy series preserved for future TV audiences.

The full names of Fred and Ethel are Fredrick Hobart Mertz and Ethel Louise Roberta Mae Potter Mertz

Because of limited space on the sound stage, the Ricardo's bedroom and the Mertz's living room is the same set with different furniture.

Lucie and Desi Arnaz Jr. appear in the final first run episode of the series. Their parents wanted them on the show to help them celebrate the final episode of the series.

Gale Gordon was the first choice to play Fred Mertz, but he was unavailable. When they came across William Frawley, Desi Arnez wanted him, but he was told that Frawley would be a poor choice because he was a womanizer, a gambler, and a drunk. Arnez said, "He's perfect!"

The Ricardos' address was 623 East 68th Street. E. 68th Street in Manhattan only goes up to 600, which means that the Ricardos' building in the middle of the East River.

Three "flashback" episodes were shown during the period when Lucille Ball was recovering after giving birth to Desi Jr. These episodes were filmed in advance after Miss Ball found out she was pregnant.

Lucy's birthday is 6 August 1921. She was born in West Jamestown, NY. Her birth year was always kept secret as a running gag on the show, but it was revealed in the episode "The Passport".

Ethel was from Albequerque, New Mexico and her father ran the candy store. Also, one of her neighbors was Betty Ramsey, who would later become a neighbor of Ethel's and Lucy's when they moved to Connecticut in the final season.

Did You Know Facts from The Internet Movie Database


The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows: 1946-Present

The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows: 1946-Present by Tim Brooks and Earle Marsh

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• Annual program schedules at a glance for the past fifty-seven years • Top-rated shows of each season • Emmy Award winners • Longest running series • Spin-off series • Theme songs • A fascinating history of TV

For more information and to purchase, click below:

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I Love Lucy: The Complete History of the Most Popular TV Show Ever

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    Links:

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    East 68th Street - "I Love Lucy" Site

    The Lucille Ball File

    LUCYlibrary

    East 68th Street - Everything "I Love Lucy"

    I Love Lucy page (Tim's TV Showcase)

    I Love Lucy Episode Guide (TV.com)

    I Love Lucy Episode List (epguides.com)

    I Love Lucy Episode Guide (ClassicSitcoms.com)

    Everything Lucy, Lucille Ball

    Sitcomboy's Lucille Ball Tribute

    LucyBall.Net

    Lucy's World

    I Love Lucy (ClassicTVHits.com)

    I Love Lucy (Take Me to TV Land)

    I Love Lucy, Ricky, Ethel, Fred & Little Ricky Too!

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