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‘I Love Lucy’ Day

Posted: October 17, 2013 3:34 p.m.
Updated: October 18, 2013 5:00 a.m.

“I Love Lucy” Day was this week and I have to admit that “I Love Lucy” is, hands-down, my favorite TV show.

A co-worker made sure to mention that Tuesday was “I Love Lucy” Day after I told her about my love for the show. I recently bought the first and second season of the classic sitcom and have been watching it non-stop for the last several weeks. The collector’s DVDs feature a beautiful color introduction, where the background scene is classic black and white, but the four main characters of the show are in color. It’s amazing that producers were able to enhance the intro like that because it makes the DVD even more special.

“I Love Lucy” Day commemorates the first episode of the show, which aired Oct. 15, 1951. The episode, “The Girls Want To Go To a Nightclub,” is a perfect foreshadowing of what was to come in the six seasons of the “I Love Lucy” series. In this episode, Lucy McGillicuddy Ricardo (Lucille Ball) and Ethel Mertz (Vivian Vance) team up against Lucy’s husband, Ricky, (Desi Arnaz), and Ethel’s husband, Fred (William Frawley), in a spat about where to celebrate Fred and Ethel’s wedding anniversary. The couples try to butter each other up to get the other on board with their own perfect wedding anniversary location: for Ethel it’s a nightclub, for Fred it’s a boxing-match.

As a little girl, I remember laughing to tears at Lucille Ball’s crazy antics on the show. My dad bought me the Funny World of Lucy, a set of five VHS tapes that documents Ball’s life and features several “I Love Lucy” episodes, including the “The Lost Episode.” The collection helped me to appreciate the series even more. “Vitameatavegamin,” the episode where Lucy gets cast in a commercial for a new medicine, but gets a little too happy after trying the product, which contains 23 percent alcohol, and “Job Switch,” where Lucy and Ethel become working women for a day and Fred and Ricky try their hand at being stay at home husbands, are both classic episodes. One of my favorite episodes, though, is, “Lucy’s Schedule.” After several occasions of tardiness, Lucy makes Ricky late to a very important dinner with Ricky’s new boss. Completely embarrassed from the evening, Ricky puts Lucy on a schedule. Fred likes the idea as does Ricky’s boss and they both tell their wives that they, too, will be on a schedule soon. With Lucy’s leadership, of course, the three wives come up with a plan to eliminate the rigid schedule. The episode is hilarious and one of the best ideas Lucy has in the first season. I also love the episode where Ball gets in a grape fight with an Italian woman while stomping grapes at a winery and the episode where she and Ethel order two sides of meat for their new freezer.

As a child, I just watched the show for the laughs. Although I still laugh until tears at most episodes of “I Love Lucy,” I’m now more inspired by Ball’s bravery as a female actress and comedian. One of my favorite quotes is also not so coincidently from the unabashed leading lady: “Love yourself first and everything falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.” It’s so true; and she walked her talk. She and Arnaz formed a production company, which Ball later led, and made a movie. Even after Ball and Arnaz divorced, she continued acting and making guest appearances.

 The writing in the “I Love Lucy” show is classic, even in the more subtle episodes. Not only is the “I Love Lucy” show clean and family friendly, it still hits the mark despite the major change in social dynamics throughout the years. I think a day celebrating Ball is well deserved and everyone should do themselves a favor and watch their favorite episode of “I Love Lucy.”


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