S1E4: Lucy Thinks Ricky is Trying to Murder Her

30 Jan

Aired Nov 5, 1951

Plot: When Lucy reads a murder mystery and Ethel tells reads her her fortune, Lucy becomes convinced Ricky is trying to off her.

Let’s Get Into It: This was the first filmed episode of ILL but due to “post-production technical difficulties” it was aired forth.

Image result for i love lucy mockingbird mystery

It opens with Lucy reading The Mockingbird Mystery and she’s so engrossed in her book she doesn’t even notice she’s dipping in her chips in cold cream.  Ricky and Lucy get ready for bed and in this era married couples slept in twin beds (on TV) but in these episodes they were pushed together! This was before Little Ricky made his appearance and before it was undeniable that Ricky and Lucy were having S.E.X and the network made them push the beds apart.

The next morning, Lucy is still reading her flying book when Ethel comes in. Ethel’s hair isn’t in it’s usual style here and I think she looks really great. She tells Lucy she learned to read tarot cards and Lucy’s response is that she doesn’t believe in that stuff. Well, she will 3 episodes later… Ethel can barely look at the cards, they’re so scary! They say Lucy is going to die. Lucy then overhears Ricky talking to her agent about “getting rid of her” and getting a gun, not realizing he is talking about his nightclub act and is convinced Ricky is going to kill her.  Which last night, when Ricky was mocking murdering his wife (like he suggests the husband does in her book, Ricky already said a gun was “too noisy” so Lucy has nothing to fear there. lol)

Image result for lucy thinks ricky is trying to murder her

Ricky writes down a list of the dog’s names and every time the names are read back Helen’s and Ann’s switch order. Hm… Plus is there a gay joke in ILL? One of Ricky’s potential future partners is Theodore?? Progressive Ricky.

This episode really does feel like the “pilot” since it sets up Ethel as the landlord and Jerry as Ricky’s agent. Plus you can tell this show is shot more like a play; when Lucy is running from Ricky, you can see her unclip the frying pan so that it “falls.” Plus Desi, not as familiar with being on camera, has a couple of goofs. When he walks over to answer the phone, he walks too fast and a camera is unable to move out of view. You can see it on the right side of  your screen. Later he stand up to fast causing the camera to cut off half his face and jumps up to adjust.

Ricky confides in Fred that he is worried about Lucy and Fred’s answer is to drug her! Wha? Fred ‘occasionally’ just drugs his wife? Not cool. This was such a different time! So Fred hands Ricky a sedative that Lucy sees him put in her drink.

Let’s break down this scene. Lucy doesn’t just straight out ask Rick, hey whaddya doing? Communication isn’t their strong suit. So she sets both drinks on the table and asks him to dance. When they do the camera swings too far and you can see the bedroom on the left side of the shot. Then Lucy switched the glasses and Ricky secretly switches them back. What do you think Ricky was thinking when he either saw or assumed Lucy switched the drinks? Did he think she knew there was a sedative in there and just didn’t want to go to sleep? Or did he know that she thought he was trying to murder her and what? I don’t even know what he was thinking! Well he switches them back and so she supposedly drinks from the poisoned cup but watch closely and you’ll see Ricky actually picks up that glass.

Lucy isn’t taking this lying down so she and Ethel run over to the club to confront Ricky. She finds out the list of girls (and Theodore) are actually dogs but listen closely and you’ll hear the trainer call one of them “Yorky.” Also keep your eyes on Ethel. Lucy yawns, now that the sleeping pill is kicking in, but Vance in reaction to seeing Lucy, yawns as well! She’s the cutest.

MFH Connection: Based on the MFH episode titled “The Wills.”

Familiar Faces:
Jerry the Agent (Jerry Hausner) becomes a semi-recurring character but he also is responsible for the crying Little Ricky Voice. When he’s not crying, he remains Jerry except for in Lucy Does a TV Commercial, suddenly his name is Joe.

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