Welcome to a new Sitcom Tuesday and more of our second annual RERUN series, designed to give yours truly a chance to get further ahead in coverage of our last few ’90s comedies. Regular programming will resume soon, but in the meantime, I’m excited to resurrect and re-examine some of my favorite Sitcom posts from this blog’s nearly six year run!
As with last year’s series (begun here), my intention is to provide a link to each original piece and then offer a tiny bit of updated commentary, either on episode picks I’d call differently now (like in my famous “Regrets” post) or on something broader, like evolving thoughts on the year/series as a whole. I’ve picked a few goodies, so I hope you’re as excited as I am about revisiting our favorites… But please be gentle! Many of the posts you’ll see were written a while ago. The standards here have changed as I’ve changed. (There are plenty of typos, juvenile “hot takes,” and places where more information would now be appreciated.)
This week, I’m rerunning… The Ten Best HERE’S LUCY Episodes of Season Six. More here: http://jacksonupperco.com/2014/07/01/the-ten-best-heres-lucy-episodes-of-season-six/
Earlier in these posts, I referred to Here’s Lucy as a campy time-filler, a guilty pleasure — and I did so to contrast it with the comedic masterworks that more frequently punctuate Sitcom Tuesday coverage. You see, this series is not well-written or regularly character-driven. However, it’s still a vehicle for our Lucy, and if you’re looking to be entertained — and, it goes without saying, but I’m always looking to be entertained — there’s a lot to enjoy… So, I’m rerunning one of our Here’s Lucy posts because I want to, with hindsight, be more direct in making a seasonal preference. That is, I think the best year of Here’s Lucy is its last — the sixth, which ran during the 1973-’74 season. It’s loaded with classic episodes, is more contemporary than its predecessors (but not shockingly or uncomfortably so — it only goes as far as Ball would let it), and ultimately makes the best case for Lucy’s ability to remain captivating within a television landscape that had, over the course of this particular series’ run, changed entirely… Now, many fans cite Season Five as their favorite, and I understand why — “Bob and Madelyn” imbue their scripts with more logic, born from some increased continuity and more attention paid to the characters and their relationships. I, too, appreciate that season for that reason. (I also appreciate the great physical gags afforded to Ball during the series’ first year, which is the most like the later seasons of The Lucy Show, and in particular its sixth, which I think is the best of that show’s “Hollywood years.”) But, frankly, with strong guest turns from stars like O.J. Simpson, Jackie Coogan, and Joan Rivers, and some surprisingly character-centric outings (like the penultimate, “Where Is My Wandering Mother Tonight?”), Season Six has stuck with me the most, and I just want to make sure that the record shows that it’s indeed my favorite year of Here’s Lucy.
Come back next week for another Sitcom Tuesday! And stay tuned tomorrow for a new Wildcard Wednesday!