Lucy Shows … That NEVER WERE!

Original Post Date on AUGUST 2002
This list came about when I was working as freelance copy chief at Martha Stewart’s monthly catalog in the early 2000s (then called Martha By Mail). I got my best friend, Craig Hamrick, a gig at the catalog for a week or two. Sitting at our computer stations in her vast downtown loft office space, which was decorated for the winter holidays at the time, Craig remarked, “Wouldn’t it be hysterical if Lucy snuck in to meet Martha Stewart as a temp, and somehow ended up swinging from the rafters, covered in tinsel?” When we stopped laughing, I wrote a short synopsis of how such a show might have been plotted (See below.) If you can never get enough Lucy, this page is for you! But remember: the following “Lucy” show synopses are totally fake, and were written in the spirit of good humor, which, after all, is what Lucille Ball and her shows were all about. Please do not write asking where you can find these episodes on tape; I repeat, they do not exist. Having said that, sit back, let your imagination run wild, and have a little fun with Lucy and friends in these mock sitcom plot summaries. I wish these had happened; imagine what Lucy could’ve done to domestic diva Martha Stewart, for example (See below.) … but we can dream, right? Enjoy!

“Fred Goes on a Bender, Part 1”
It’s Fred’s birthday and Ricky wants to take him out for drinks and the fights, but once the girls find out about it, Lucy and Ethel decide only a formal dinner will do. Ricky and Fred reluctantly agree, but plan to ditch the girls after they arrive at the restaurant. When Lucy and Ethel leave the table to powder their noses, Ricky tips the waiter (Frank Nelson) to tell them there was an “emergency” at the club, Fred went with Ricky to help out, and they’d be back as soon as possible. Ricky also tells the waiter to “put the girls’ meal on my tab.” Lucy and Ethel swallow the story (at first), and Ricky takes Fred to a nearby bar, where everyone who knows Fred treats him to a birthday beer. In an hour Fred is so plastered he’s screaming for his “lovely wife, Ethel, my little honeybunch.” Ricky realizes it’s time for Fred to go home. Fred reluctantly agrees, after one last trip to the men’s room, but when he doesn’t return in a few minutes, Ricky goes to the bathroom and discovers Fred is missing! Just then, Lucy and Ethel interrupt the birthday revelers, having tipped the waiter themselves to get the truth when the men never returned to dinner. The three run off to find the missing Fred!

“Fred Goes on a Bender, Part 2”
Their search takes them on a madcap tour of the bars/restaurants in Times Square, including Lindy’s, where a vaudeville crony of Fred’s tells them he was there, but just left. In fact, that’s the story they get at every place they stop in. Finally, at a Blarney Stone on East 68th Street, they run into Mrs. Trumbull and Grace Foster, who’ve been looking for them. Fred’s at home, Mrs. Trumbull says. She overheard him on one of the pay phones in the hall calling every bar in the city, instructing his pals to tell anyone looking for him that, “He’s just left.” Ricky, Lucy and Ethel return home to find Fred laughing hysterically in the Mertz’s apartment. “Why, Fred Mertz!” Ethel yells. “I oughta…” “Oh, come on, honeybunch, I was just having some birthday fun!” Ethel rolls her eyes, and says, “Well, Fred, I guess even an old poop like you needs a good time every now and then.” She goes to the kitchen, gets a lemon meringue pie, and creams Fred in the puss, yelling, “Happy Birthday!” The fab four dissolves into laughter.

“Latins in Manhattan!”
Guest stars Jose Ferrer and his wife Rosemary Clooney are staying with Lucy and Ricky in Connecticut, as Ricky and Jose prepare a Latin-flavored musical revue for The Tropicana’s Mother’s Day show. Rosie’s already got a spot in the show singing “Que Sera, Sera,” and Lucy and the Mertzes want in. Ricky is adamant that they cannot be in the show, so they stage a mock revue for Jose in which Lucy plays a Spanish Cinderella, Cenicienta, with Fred (William Frawley) in drag as her money-obsessed stepmother, Madrasta, and Ethel (Vivian Vance) as her fairy godmother, Madrina. Jose thinks it might work, much to Ricky’s chagrin, and he agrees to use them in the revue. Meanwhile, Lucy overhears Ricky and Jose making a date to audition and hire some chorus girls, and mistakenly believes the men are making dates for themselves. Disguised as showgirls, Lucy and Rosie break in on the auditions, and discover the boys were simply interviewing more mature chorines for the special Mother’s Day salute. All is forgiven; the revue goes on as planned, and for the finale, special guest star Cantinflas—lowered from the ceiling in a huge, multicolored balloon, a la his hit movie “Around the World in 80 Days”—leads the cast in a rousing version of “Mama, Yo Quiero.” Cameos by Cesar Romero, Ricardo Montalban, and Fernando Lamas as Tropicana waiters.

“Lucy Becomes a Beverly Hillbilly”
Banker Theodore J. Mooney (Gale Gordon) meets banker Milburn Drysdale (Raymond Bailey) at a convention in Los Angeles. They hit it off, and Drysdale ends up inviting Mooney for a visit. Mooney’s secretary, Lucy Carmichael, tags along, and meets Drysdale’s ultra-efficient secretary, Miss Jane Hathaway (Nancy Kulp). After observing how much Mooney likes the way Miss Hathaway works, Lucy begins to think Mooney is going to replace her. While Mooney and Drysdale attend a seminar, Miss Jane suggests showing Lucy the Clampett mansion. Granny is fascinated with Lucy’s red hair (“That sure ain’t a color that exists in nature!” she guffaws), and ends up serving Lucy some of her special moonshine, White Lightning. Drunk, Lucy confesses that she’s afraid Mooney will fire her after seeing how efficient Miss Jane is. Granny suggests Lucy “muss up” Miss Jane as she enters the kitchen, which Lucy does, resulting in a food fight that ends up in the “cee-ment” pond out back, where Miss Jane de-wigs Lucy (her real hair is exactly the same color underneath)! Jethro is sent in to separate the women, and while he is picking up Miss Jane and lifting her out of the pool, she turns to Lucy, points a thumb at Jethro and says, “My dear, you have nothing to worry about? Why would I want to leave this?”

“Lucy Meets Martha Stewart”
Domestic diva Stewart (playing herself) needs a group of decoys in her office to divert attention from the real thing as she prepares for a traditional Christmas celebration, so she calls Harrison Carter (Gale Gordon), owner of the Unique Employment Agency. Lucy Carter (Lucille Ball) intercepts the call, and immediately offers her services as a decoy. Dressed in a blonde wig and a chef’s outfit, Lucy shows up at Stewart’s downtown offices along with a dozen other “Marthas” and is instructed to wander around looking “official” … but not to bother the real Martha. Lucy immediately gets into trouble shadowing Stewart as she prepares a new recipe for Boston cream pie. Lucy spills a tray of pies on Martha, resulting in a hilarious, messy cream/custard fight as Martha retaliates. A call to the Agency lets Harry in on Lucy’s shenanigans, so he hurries down to Stewart’s office to get Lucy out of there and save his company’s reputation. Entering the huge, open central area in the office he finds Lucy swinging from the rafters, with Martha swinging next to her in hot pursuit, both covered in caramel popcorn garlands. As Martha swings close to the redhead, she says, smiling and shaking a finger, “Lucy, you have some ’splainin’ to do! And some caramel corn to eat!!”

“Lucy Invades Dean Martin’s Privacy”
Hired as interference to keep the public away from Dean Martin, who cherishes his privacy, Lucy is ecstatic following her favorite star wherever he goes. Pretty soon, however, she’s made Martin realize she’s the wrong gal for the job, as she butts in to every aspect of his day, from tucking his napkin in at breakfast (and spilling a bowl of hot oatmeal on his lap in the process) to taking over as his chauffeur (and causing a 20-mile traffic jam on the Pacific Coast Highway). Martin decides to turn the tables on Lucy, and be there at her side whenever she attempts to do anything; this results in a hilarious scene as Dean secretly hides in the women’s dressing room at Saks and pops out in drag while Lucy is trying on an outfit. Ultimately though, it doesn’t work, and Martin, desperate to get rid of Lucy, has his secretary (Doris Singleton) slip Lucy a Mickey by the pool, dump her in a limo, and drop her off at home. His plan backfires as Lucy catches on and switches glasses. Lucy promises to let Dean live his own life, and the episode ends with the two stars singing “That’s Amore,” as Lucy props up a dizzy Dean (whose wife, Jeanne, takes one look at him and shouts, “So, it’s all just an act, eh?!”). Look for a cameo by Frank Sinatra as “Shecky”, the pool boy.


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