I Love Lucy S02 E08 – Redecorating

Original Air Date: November 24, 1952

We open on Ricky sleeping under a Look Magazine, which sort of cancels out the whole point of that publication.

The women are at a home show to tour model homes with beautiful new furniture. Fred says it always makes the ladies unhappy to see better homes than theirs – as opposed to bored, which is what it should make any normal human being.

But the guys know what will cheer up anyone: Tickets to opening night of the latest Rodgers and Hammerstein show.

I will ignore that no such show premiered in 1952. Facts schmacts, they are right those tickets would wake me out of a damn coma. That is the best gift in the entire history of ever.

But it doesn’t work. Lucy is culturally a total Philistine. She comes back from the home show with Ethel and just complains about her couch. 

I Love Lucy S02 E08 Lucy is Disappointed

Lucy hates her furniture but that’s fine because her furniture never liked her anyway.

I know what has Lucy so down! It’s the hormones from her impossible-to-hide-at-this-point pregnancy.

And not only are she and Ethel being super bitchy about wanting new stuff, they straight up refuse to go see the play. They’ve put in their names to win a redecorating prize, and they have to be home right by the phone in order to claim it.

That is a really messed up contest. We’ll call you, and we won’t tell you when, and until then don’t even go to the bathroom to pee. Winner gets freedom, I guess.

So the guys meet up at the drugstore and try to figure out how to get these women to go see Rodgers and Hammerstein with them. Today this situation would look like:

“Hey honey, I have 4 tickets to Hamilton.”
“Shut up I have to wait by my TV in case I win the lottery.”

Except everyone knows it’s easier to win the lottery than get Hamilton tickets. Now I’m sad.

Ricky wants to trick the women into thinking they won, so they’ll leave the house. He tells Fred to make the call.

I Love Lucy S02 E08 Ricky and Fred in drugstore

Fred realizing this would make them 0-4 on good ideas they’ve come up with at the drugstore.

And when Lucy and Ethel get that call? Somehow, they actually think really wisely and decide sell all the old furniture and use the proceeds to wallpaper the house. It’s so happily out of character it feels like the Downton Abbey finale. 

Enter Dan Jenkins, Second-Hand Furniture Man and living Craigslist ad. He’s the guy who hangs around you at the bar and sniffs you. You hate that guy.

Lucy’s negotiating experience is limited to negotiating her way into tight dresses. So she signs a bill of sale promising all her furniture for $75.00.

I Love Lucy S02 E08 Lucy and Ethel with furniture guy

I’m sick of this “sleazy home-visit used furniture salesman” trope.

Using this new fortune, the ladies get some wallpaper for Lucy’s bedroom and measure it with outstretched arms. Then Lucy glues the paper onto Ethel, and they rip a bunch of it. Lastly, they hang it up like paper mache piles of poo all over the wall.

To this day, only one sad woman works at any Home Depot, and you can thank the origami twins for that.

When Ricky finds out they sold the furniture, he’s horrified. Although I have to hand it to him, he does admit his fault. It’s like that time even Donald Trump apologized. Oh wait, nevermind.

They call in Mr. Jenkens (whom Ricky understandably calls Mr. Jerkins) and buy back their furniture for $395. But Ricky wants to see how badly this all went. He wants to go deep into the abyss. He asks to see the bedroom.

Lucy: We haven’t finished papering in there.
Ricky: Who is we?

Lucy: Ethel and Lucy Paperhanger.

The bedroom is a scene from Tim Burton’s fever nightmares. They papered over the windows and doors. Lucy’s even papered over Ethel in the closet.

I Love Lucy S02 E08 Lucy shows Ricky wallpaper

Modern art museum, bedroom, or the hem of a giant’s pin-striped suit?

Fred walks in and immediately gets as dizzy as those girls he drugged. And he tell them Lucy DID win, and so they’re out the money they used to buy back their furniture.

$395 to get their furniture back – $75 from selling it in the first place = 4 idiots.

It’s important to note there was an easy solution for Ricky on this whole furniture sale front:

Until around the time this aired, husbands could cancel contracts signed by their wives. It was handled via “coverture” laws, and it was shitty. I can’t find exact timelines on how these laws evolved in New York State. If someone can clarify the coverture laws in NYC in 1952, I will pay them $1 billion.

(And then my husband will void what I just promised you.)

Join me next week for S02 E09: Ricky Loses His VoiceNew posts on Fridays! 

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I Love Lucy S02 E08 Lucy and Ethel wait by phone

You can pray all you want, but the phone gods are notoriously vengeful.

3 thoughts on “I Love Lucy S02 E08 – Redecorating

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