I Love Lucy S02 E14 – Ricky Has Labor Pains

Original Air Date: January 5, 1953

We’re at 1953! Another year, another round of progress we can undo over 60 years later. 

Note: this week’s episode is listed as Episode 19 on Hulu because facts are dead. It’s actually Episode 14, but that’s only according to every major TV archive and film site. If you FEEL like it’s episode 19, congratulations. You’re our new Secretary of Lucy. 

We open on Ricky, talking with Fred on the phone. Fred wants to come up and watch the game with Ricky, but he’s worried Lucy might mind because she’s getting further in her pregnancy and might not want company.

Let’s pause here and mark this moment as the first time Fred has ever been the most considerate man in the room. Fred is fucking Feminism 101 compared to the shit Ricky pulls in this episode. 

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I Love Lucy S02 E12 – Lucy’s Show Biz Swan Song

Thank you for your patience, Ballers! I’ve been MIA trying to get another project up and launched. When you’re done reading this week’s post, head on over to Red, White, and Dad. It’s a weekly comedy show following my dad’s actual presidential campaign for The Constitution Party.

And now, finally, here’s this week’s episode…

Original Air Date: December 22, 1952

We open on Ricky trying to cast a quartet but not wanting to pay for it. He wants free labor, which some of you may call “slavery” but those of us in the know call “show business.”

Fred and Ethel offer to perform as “The Merry Mertzes,” which they showed us in E09. “Merry” must be a musical term for “hostile and spouse-hating” because that’s what I think of when I see these two together. They have as much chemistry as the movie version of Christian Grey and that girl Christian’s into. No one ever talks about her so I don’t know her name, and if I ever google that shit, you’ll know it’s time to get me 24/7 care. 

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I Love Lucy S02 E10 – Lucy Is Enceinte

Original Air Date: December 8, 1952

We open on Lucy preparing her purse to go to the doctor because she’s been feeling “dauncy.” I dunno what dauncy means, but I’m assuming it means blatantly lacking a period because our girl is pregnant.

She doesn’t know it, though. She sleeps in a twin bed… I doubt she knows her body all that well.

Maybe the censors cut the line where she says, “I mean I’m three weeks late but then I haven’t had a heavy period since I started the pill and besides I wouldn’t be able to tell anyway because I put an extra large diva cup in a few days early this time.”

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I Love Lucy S02 E09 – Ricky Loses His Voice

Original Air Date: December 1, 1952

It was 6am when we watched this week’s episode, and that theme song made me want to die. I love this show, but I don’t recommend enjoying it before 10am. It’s like setting “Trump rally” as your wake-up alarm tone.

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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.

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I Love Lucy S02 E03 – The Anniversary Present

Original Air Date: September 29, 1952

We open on Ricky sleeping in while Lucy brings coffee to the painters outside the window. For a minute there it looks like she might jump. But Ricky wants his breakfast, as in now. He saves her life.

I wish we could watch Lucy make him that breakfast, but instead we have to watch Ricky dial one of those old rotary phones. Those phones take forever. By the time he’s done, the Academy has nominated a black woman for Best Director. It literally takes centuries.

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I Love Lucy S02 E02 – The Saxophone

Original Air Date: September 22, 1952

Happy New Year, Ballers!

We open this week on Lucy in her hoarder’s closet. We all have one. Mine looks like Christmas and Hanukkah had a baby and no one cleaned up the afterbirth.

So yeah. Apparently Ethel and Fred have an attic. They’re clearly rolling in money, because these days that Upper East Side crawl space would make a “cozy 2-bedroom steal at $3200/mo.”

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I Love Lucy S01 E35 – Ricky Asks for a Raise

Original air date: June 9, 1952

Sup ballerz!

Today we look at the Season One finale! As I was watching this one, I could tell Lucy and Desi had an especially great energy. I knew she was pregnant at this point, but it turns out she found out the week they filmed this!

So they’re on a high about the baby, I’m on a high that we’re one season down, and you’re hopefully just high. (It helps the jokes seem funnier.)

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I Love Lucy S01 E34 – Ricky Thinks He’s Going Bald

Original air date: June 2, 1952

Well, Ballers, we’re back with episode 34.

Yes, that’s 34. We get it, Lucy, you were an overachiever. But 35 episodes in your first season? With some of them filmed while pregnant? You’re making James Franco look like a lazy disappointment.

We open on Lucy primping before bed. She’s getting crow’s feet and she knows it, but like any self-assured woman, she copes with her own mortality by telling her husband he’s going bald.

Ricky realizes she may be right, and he becomes a bit obsessed.

Ricky: It’s thick enough on top, but gee that hairline.
Lucy: And they say women are vain. (Later) Come back to bed, baldy.

Ricky, you worry about your hairline? Try the expectation that you’ll pluck every damn hair from your body until you look like a 9-yr-old. Then apply dyes and chemicals to your face, nails, and hair. Finally, put torture devices on your feet so men will simultaneously take you more seriously while sexualizing you, and then get back to me.

Or maybe I’m just self conscious because I haven’t showered in 4 days.

Donald Trump as a Cuban. Mind BLOWN.

A Cuban Donald Trump. Mind BLOWN.

The next day, Ricky’s gone kinda crazy. He’s wearing a hat, and he wants to get out of there so badly he doesn’t even chew his grapefruit. Dude, maybe savor the moment a bit and you’ll keep your hair for longer.

Lucy puts on a man’s hat, too, and then catches the toast with it. These people will spend like five months’ rent on a stupid bet, but they won’t buy a new toaster? Thing’s a fire hazard.

This shot was hilarious back in 1952. Now it’s just standard Zooey Deschanel costuming.

This shot was hilarious back in 1952. Now it’s just standard Zooey Deschanel costuming.

After Ricky leaves, Lucy expresses to Fred and Ethel how worried she is for him.

Fred: It’s no laughing matter, Ethel. I should know, now that my hairline is starting to recede.

Fred believes he’s got a full head of hair, and he’s also preeeetty sure the pyramids were built to store grain.

Lots of Republican jokes today, guys. They’re making it easy.

Lucy decides to give Ricky scalp treatments so drastic he’ll stop worrying about it.

Lucy: You haven’t heard of The Lucy Ricardo Torture System of Hair Restoring.

We haven’t heard of it, Lucy, that’s true, but we imagined it the minute we read the title of this episode.

Lucy goes to a hair shop run by Benedict Cumberbatch’s evil older brother. He offers her vibrators, suction devices, and agitators. If Lucy were a good friend, she’d get one of those vibrators for Ethel. Instead, she decides the options are just too drastic and leaves.

Playing the hair guy tonight: Benedict COMB-berbatch!!! I had to.

Playing the hair guy tonight: Benedict COMB-berbatch!!! I had to.

So Lucy reconvenes with Ethel, and they decide to throw a giant bald-headed man party. They name it: The Republican Convention. SHAZAAM!

She calls up Cumberbatch and he brings 3 bald men, with 6 more coming: Mr. Johnson, Mr. Miller, and Mr. Davis. In case it wasn’t clear, this show is white.

She pays them $10 each, which costs her whole emergency fund. Note: she spends 5x that amount every episode.

That’s when Fred shows up in a toupee.

Ethel’s like, Lucy, why the hell didn’t you buy me that vibrator, suction device, and/or agitator!?

Ethel’s like, Lucy, why the hell didn’t you buy me that vibrator, suction device, and/or agitator!?

I’m still super confused why Lucy’s throwing this shindig. What’s Ricky gonna think in a room full of bald people? “Oh look, there’s me in a few years?!” Smart.

But Ricky can’t get there because of work, so Lucy’s stuck with her original torture treatment idea.

First she puts oil and vinegar on his hair, then eggs. I should point out this is an actual treatment. I’ve done it. Just like I’ve plucked my eyebrows, worn a corset, and waxed my nethers. If Ricky thinks he’s got it bad, he can go fuck himself.

Then she gives him a stocking to put on his head, but he misunderstands and puts it on his legs. And we’re all having such a good time watching him struggle for like 2 seconds. For further thoughts, please see the previous paragraph.

No, YOU’RE the one who thinks he looks like Newt Gingrich.

No, YOU’RE the one who thinks he looks like Newt Gingrich.

Eventually she dumps cake batter all over him, puts the stocking on, and tells him to bake for 20 minutes, then repeat the whole thing every other night.

While I’ve never done that particular beauty treatment, I would if I found out it would fix split ends. Also, when it’s over you have cake!

Ricky ends the show by doubling down:

Ricky: I think we ought to do it every night! Then my hair will grow in faster!

And for a brief moment, with that beautiful, fleeting line, we get to enjoy a man on this show being the idiot for once. Take a deep breath and let yourself feel it. We won’t get it back again for a long, long time.

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Join me next week for S01 E35: Ricky Asks for a Raise. New posts every Friday!

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Probably not the first time someone’s been plunged in that kitchen.

Probably not the first time someone’s been plunged in that kitchen.

I Love Lucy S01 E32 – Lucy Gets Ricky on the Radio

Original air date: May 19, 1952

We open on Lucy doing her nails while Ricky reads LOOK. (as in LOOK how bored I already am). Thankfully Fred and Ethel show up to watch TV.

The gang is well-prepared for this ritual. Ethel even has a popcorn passer! One thing you can say about the 1950s: even with all the racism and homophobia, they sure invented lots of great stuff for television watching.

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