December 20, 2011

I Love Lucy: A Celebration of All Things Lucy/Inside the World of Television’s First Great Sitcom


I Love Lucy: A Celebration of All Things Lucy/Inside the World of Television’s First Great Sitcom by Elizabeth Edwards

Upon the 60th anniversary of the premiere show, and what would be Lucille Ball’s 100th birthday year, this ultimate celebration of both the woman and the iconic program is a perfect tribute.

Even though “I Love Lucy” premiered during the autumn of 1951, sixty years later it is still rerun in dozens of countries throughout the world. If you remember the 1950s, “I Love Lucy” was more than likely one of your favorite weekly sitcoms. The broadcast began during the autumn of 1951. On October 29th, those lucky enough to have a television set tuned in to see the 4th episode of the series,“The Diet,” which had a plot that was fairly typical. Lucy wants to get a job in Ricky’s club, he agrees but claims she must lose 12 pounds to fit into the costume, and so begins dieting and sessions in a sweatbox to lose the extra weight. Her hard work pays off but she collapses right after the show.

I Love Lucy” was more than just a hit, it was a cultural phenomenon and Lucy, Ricky, Ethel, and Fred became more than just television characters. For many, they became almost like members of the family. Remember when Little Ricky was born? If you do, you recall that it was an international event.

Lucille Ball’s success on television was hardly instant. According to Edwards, Lucy began as a fashion model for Hattie Carnegie, posed for portraits, one of which was used in a Chesterfield cigarette magazine advertisement. When Agent Sylvia Hahlo saw the ad she thought Ball might be perfect as a chorus girl in the Eddie Cantor film, “Roman Scandals.” Ball was hired, left New York, and arrived in Hollywood for what she thought was a six weeks assignment but remained on the West Coast, eventually appeared in more than eighty films and, of course, a fixture on early network television.

This is a fascinating book brimming with illustrations, trivia, and — as promised — facts about all things Lucy.  This book brings to life the world of the show and its impact more fully than ever before. Rare backstage photos and images from the stars’ personal collections illustrate new stories about the making of I Love Lucy. Highlights include Lucille Ball’s personal commentary on her favorite episodes, taken from previously unpublished interviews. Chapters filled with trivia, character bios, fashions, music, recipes featured on the show, and much more make this an informative and fabulously entertaining tribute to the classic show.


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