Lucy...I'm home.Okay. I admit it. I am an addict. I am a slave to "I Love Lucy". I am powerless over Fred and Ethel. I own the DVDs. I have seen every episode 1647 times. I know the dialogue by heart. All of these are facts yet, who do you think will still stop what she is doing, sit down and watch when she catches an episode on television? Uh huh. Me.
9:00PM, October 15, 1951.
From that minute forward, I Love Lucy went on the air, and has never been off since. Television critics of the day were already beginning to tire of the sitcom centered on the institution of marriage. But what is it about that show biz wannabe redhead, her Cuban bandleader husband, and their landlords/best friends/co-conspirators that drove upwards of 40,000,000 viewers a week to tune in - and continues to entertains millions of people the world over? Perhaps the key lies with the show's mastery of the graceful transition from sense to nonsense. Each episode opens with a plausible situation (home economy, child rearing, postdating a check) thrown awry with exaggerated absurdity (Lucy is starched, frozen, stuffed with chocolate, locked in a trunk, and lowered to the deck of a ship by helicopter, just to name a few). Yet somehow, Lucy never seems to lose touch with the audience - the show is human, and so are we.
While the comic brilliance of Lucille Ball and the magic chemistry of the four main characters were the cornerstones of the show, I Love Lucy owes its success in no small part to a band of brilliant creators and innovators. The show gave birth to the rerun, was the first to use three cameras simultaneously filming before a live audience, and overcame many technical obstacles of early television through ingenious lighting, set design, and editing.
So, you see? I am simply, happily, powerless when it comes to my love for the Ricardos and the Mertzes.
Lucy, you got some 'splainin' to do.