I Love Lucy S02 E05 – The Operetta

Original Air Date: October 13, 1952

We open on a henhouse of women going “clickety clackety.” I think the script literally said, “Jabber on about lady stuff, etc.”

But Lucy didn’t have quite as good a time as her guests.

They want to put on an operetta, and as treasurer it falls on her. The treasury SHOULD have $246 in it, but a year and a half ago, she started borrowing money to balance her household account.

S02 E05 Lucy with Womens Club

Typical lady talk. “Let’s take down the patriarchy!” “But however would I get my allowance?””I have blood coming out my wherever!”

Lucy borrowed back and forth and back and forth. Now there’s no money in either account. Ethel tries to give her some hope, but come on. A bankruptcy lawyer would look at Lucy and be like, yeah you’re fucked.

Lucy: Gee, I’m worried. You know how fat I look in stripes.
Ethel: Why don’t you ask Ricky to advance you the money?
Lucy: I thought about that. I don’t look good in black and blue, either.

OK this is some bullshit. I don’t mean the domestic abuse part. I mean the part where she thinks a white collar crime would land her in jail. HAHAHAHAHA. She really is the first lady of comedy.

Lucy decides to write the show herself to save on royalties, which every theater company does at some point. It’s why writers are always starving and audiences are always disappointed.

I Love Lucy S02 E05 Ethel sad

Oh. Great. You’re writing another play.

Lucy calls her operetta The Pleasant Peasant. She’s written one other play, and it dealt with class warfare, too. Give her a few decades and she’ll run the theater troupe for Occupy Broadway. You just know that exists. 

Lucy pays for all the sets with a treasury check, but it’s dated for after the show, so she’s sure they’ll have plenty of money by then. Pay attention to this part. See, it turns out things aren’t going to go as planned!

I guess Ricky’s just accepted this is his life now. He’s playing the lead, and he doesn’t even put up a fight this time.

Ricky: (singing) I am the good Prince Lancelot. I love to sing and dance a lot.

Judge those lyrics all you want, but this is from an actual Broadway musical, circa Christmas 2012:

Elf Lyrics

This is actual gibberish and people ate up it like peppermint bark.

So OK they do a musical. And it’s pretty funny and fairly good:

Chorus: The stout makes him ail and the ale makes him stout. His inn’s on the out!

But you do have to wonder who the hell would ever come see it? Oh, some women’s club is putting on an operetta they wrote??? By all means, how can I throw my money at them!?!?!

Lucy plays a snaggle-toothed gypsy, which is only an accurate portrayal of gypsies if you acknowledge their lower health care options due to systemic racism.

I Love Lucy S02 E05 Lucy as gypsy

Poverty reinforced by ethnic hatred lol!

Then Ricky comes in as the prince and sings about his exes:

Ricky: There was Mercedes, Rosaline, Betty and Sue, Dorothy, Janice, and sweet Marylou, Audrey, Bebe, and Anastelle.

It’s a little weird, but it gets weirder:

Ricky: A little bit of Sandra in the sun, a little bit of Mary all night long, a little bit of Jessica here I am, a little bit of you makes me your man. Mambo No. 5!

And the musical goes on and everyone’s singing and happy, and then something horrible happens. The set/prop company sends men to take back Lucy’s purchases!

The women sing a little opera about how the check bounced and they’re about to lose everything, and suddenly it feels eerily similar to Les Miz.

They rip the costume pants off Ricky, and everyone’s running around in their underwear, and suddenly it feels eerily similar to Hair.

They drag Lucy off stage while she tries to save the show, and suddenly it feels eerily similar to I Love Lucy, episode whichever.

Join me in two weeks for S02 E06: Vacation from MarriageNew posts every Friday! (Except next Friday. Speaking of vacation, next week I’m off.)

And follow WTF Lucy on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

I Love Lucy S02 E04 Lucy and Ricky butt to butt

Congrats to last week’s caption winner Alexis Turrentine: “So, it wasn’t because our twin beds were separated. It’s because we’re doing it wrong!”

3 thoughts on “I Love Lucy S02 E05 – The Operetta

  1. Fred says:

    I’ve got the entire I Love Lucy series on DVD, and as it turns out, this episode’s script did have a scene in which Lucy tries to convince Ricky to be in the operetta, but they didn’t have time to include it.

    As the script goes, Lucy was all prepared to be all lovey-dovey to convince Ricky when he got home, but it turns out that Ricky has already spoken with Fred, and he knows about it. After Rickey teases her a bit by saying that he won’t do it, he confesses that he will. He figures since Fred is already in it, he might as well be too, and that it might be “a couple of laughs.”


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