hitler's dog

I am constantly, endlessly amazed by people’s inability to call a person who consistently does bad things “a bad person.”

This applies not only to people who are unable to see their own flaws (”I don’t know why you can’t accept that I just don’t like Black people, we all have our problems, I’m a Good Person”) but also like, when the villains of our society are called the villains they are, someone invariably stands up to say “But I met him one time at a party and he was a Good Man”

like guys

Mafia dons love their families, many abusers are charming and polite in public, and Hitler liked dogs

but at some point, the shitty things you bring into the world outbalance the non-shitty things you do and you have to admit that to yourselves.

IMPORTANT !

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Lucy and the Plumber

S3;E2 ~ September 28, 1964

Synopsis

When Lucy calls a plumber, he looks remarkably like Jack Benny.  When it is discovered that he also is a concert violinist, she is determined to get him on a TV talent show.  Unfortunately, Lucy recently appeared on the show with a dog act that wreaked havoc, so she (and the plumber) must go on the show in disguise.

Regular Cast

Lucille Ball (Lucy Carmichael), Gale Gordon (Theodore J. Mooney), Jimmy Garrett (Jerry Carmichael)

Vivian Vance (Vivian Bagley), Candy Moore (Chris Carmichael) and Ralph Hart (Sherman Bagley) do not appear in this episode.

Guest Cast

Jack Benny (Harry Tuttle) was born on Valentine’s day 1894.  He had a successful vaudeville career, and an even greater career on radio with “The Jack Benny Program” which also became a successful television show. His screen persona was known for being a penny-pincher and playing the violin. His theme song was “Love in Bloom.”  Benny was a Beverly Hills neighbor of Lucille Ball’s and the two were off-screen friends. This is his first of two appearances on “The Lucy Show.” He later appeared on three episodes of “Here’s Lucy” and the two appeared on many TV variety and award shows together.  Benny died in 1974.  

Tuttle is also Viv’s maiden name, although this ‘coincidence’ is never mentioned in the episode.

Bob Hope (Irving, Plumber’s Helper) was born Lesley Townes Hope in England in 1903. During his extensive career in virtually all forms of media he received five honorary Academy Awards. In 1945 Desi Arnaz was the orchestra leader on Bob Hope’s radio show. He appeared as himself on the season 6 opener of “I Love Lucy.”  In return, the “Lucy” cast did a guest spot on a Bob Hope special just three weeks later. In the sketch, Hope wonders what “I Love Lucy” would be had he married Lucille Ball instead of Desi.

The comedy superstars made four films together: Sorrowful Jones (1949), Fancy Pants (1950), The Facts of Life (1960), and Critic’s Choice (1963). Hope died at the age of 100.

Willard Waterman (Greg Gregory) was a versatile voice actor who appeared on hundreds of radio shows in the 1930s and 40s.  He is probably best remembered for playing “The Great Gildersleeve” on both radio and TV.  The year after this episode aired, he performed at New Jersey’s Paper Mill Playhouse in How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. He returned to “The Lucy Show” in 1966 for “Lucy the Rain Goddess” (S4;E15).  

The character is never referred to by name in the episode.

Tom G. Linder (Mr. Krause) was Beauty the dog’s trainer.  This is his only screen credit.

After 59 episodes, this is the first one in which Vivian Vance does not appear. She was unhappy having to constantly commute to the West Coast and was given additional weeks off during the season so she wouldn’t have to make the trip as often. 

The day this episode first aired Harpo (nee Adolph) Marx died at age 75. Lucy appeared with Harpo in the 1938 film Room Service. He guest starred as himself on the now classic episode of “I Love Lucy” titled “Lucy and Harpo Marx” (ILL S4;E28).  

This is the first of many episodes written by Milt Josefsberg and Bob O'Brien. Josefsberg was hired at the start of season 3 as the show’s script supervisor. He was a writer for “The Jack Benny Show” which accounts for Benny’s guest appearance in this episode and Josefsberg’s authorship.  Both writers would also contribute to “Here’s Lucy.”  The hallmark of their writing is witty wordplay.

In return for Benny appearing on “The Lucy Show” Lucille Ball made a guest appearance on “The Jack Benny Program” on October 2, 1964.  Lucy played the jealous wife of Paul Revere (Benny).  

The name of the TV program Lucy appears on is “The Talent Discoverer’s Show.” From the products stacked around the host’s desk, it appears that the show is sponsored by Kiddie Cookies, baked beans, and varnish!  

Lucy’s first discovery was made in Mr. Krause’s butcher shop when she saw his German Shepard Beauty “howl like the Beatles” when Mr. Krause played the harmonica. Lucy and Viv visited a butcher shop in “Together for Christmas” (S1;E13).  In that episode the butcher’s name was Ernie and he was played by Joe Mell.  1964 was a groundbreaking year for The Beatles, who made their first appearances on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” released seven singles that made the charts, and made the film A Hard Days Night.

Beauty is just another of many dogs to appear on “The Lucy Show.”  The very first episode featured Tiger, Harry Conners’ dog. Amy Schaeffer’s dog Alvin and a dozen other mutts were in “Lucy and Viv Learn Judo” (S1;E22).  More recently, Mr. Mooney’s sheep dog Nelson (and several off-screen pooches) played a part in “Lucy is Her Own Lawyer” (S2;E23).  

Lucy’s last experience with a plumber was when “Lucy and Viv Put in a Shower” (S1;E18).  His name was Joe Melvin and he was played by Stafford Repp.  

Naturally, where there are water faucets, Lucy will not be able to control them. Unsurprisingly, Mr. Mooney ends up all wet!  

Lucy’s line “Today to get a plumber you need a banker” gets a round of applause from the studio audience. Mr. Tuttle charges Lucy $6 for the house call, but $12 for the plunger that is stuck to her kitchen floor. That would be the equivalent of $140 in today’s economy.  

Harry Tuttle says he gets thrown out when he applies for a driver’s license because he’s really 39.  Throughout his later career, Jack Benny made a running gag of never admitting to being older than 39.

Mr. Tuttle says he once grew a mustache so not to look like Jack Benny, but he ended up looking like Hitler, which (he says) was better than looking like Benny.  Lucy says Harry should try a beard, like Skitch Henderson or Mitch Miller.  Lyle Russel “Skitch” Henderson (1918–2005) was a pianist, conductor, and composer.  He was bandleader for “The Tonight Show” from 1962 to 1966 during which time Jack Benny made multiple appearances. Mitchell William “Mitch” Miller (1911–2010), oboist, conductor, recording producer and recording industry executive was one of the most influential people in American music during the 1950s and early 1960s.  He was previously mentioned on “The Lucy Show” in “Lucy Puts Up an Antenna” (S1;E9).  

On “The Talent Discoverer’s Show” Harry Tuttle plays an arrangement of Donizetti.  Earlier in the episode, classical composers Beethoven, Bach and Brahms were also mentioned.  

At the end of the episode, Lucy is on the telephone with Audrey Simmons. The character was seen on screen for the last time in “Lucy Enters a Baking Contest” (S2;E28).  In “Lucy and the Good Skate” (S3;E1) Viv also had a phone conversation with Audrey.  

Callbacks!

So that the host won’t recognize her from her first disastrous appearance, Lucy passes herself off as a dark-haired Italian named Lucrecia Carmucci.  Lucy Ricardo disguised herself as a dark-haired Italian in “The Black Wig” (ILL S3;E26).  

When the host nearly recognizes Lucy disguised as Lucia, she says “You Americanos!  All-a the time you give-a the girls the same line 'Have-a we met before someplace?'” In “The Black Wig” (ILL S3;E26) Lucy Ricardo says Haven’t I seen you someplace before?” and Ricky responds “It’s possible. I’ve been someplace before.”  Always the same line, indeed!

This is the second time a “Lucy” show has made a Hitler joke.  The first was a visual gag in “Ricky’s Movie Offer” (ILL S4;E5) when Ethel jokingly puts a comb under an unconscious talent scout’s nose to give him a Hitler-style mustache.

Blooper Alerts!

When Harry Tuttle enters the kitchen for the first time, he closes the door behind him but it swings open again.  

The configuration of Lucy’s new kitchen has changed since the remodeling in “Lucy Decides to Redecorate” (S2;E8).  The cook top range is now against the shuttered hatch instead of on an island where the sink now seems to be.   Also, in this episode the modern taps have been replaced by the old fashioned hot and cold water faucets in order to facilitate the gag that turning on one, opens the spout of the other and vice versa.  

“Lucy and the Plumber” rates 4 Paper Hearts out of 5

you guys wanna hear something crazy? One of my instagram posts just got liked by a dog account, and I went to check out the account (because I’m always up for following new cute dogs) and the description said “check out my owner @ realadamrose!” And I was like wait, adam rose, I know that name and it turns out it’s the guy who played Aaron Bass from the “everybody hates hitler” episode. His dog’s account liked my post and it’s so odd and indirect but I can now say I’m only three degrees of separation away from jared padalecki