Appreciating all that makes America special

TV Show: The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show

Burns and Allen appeared together in vaudeville, movies, 675 radio programs, and 291 TV episodes. It's a wonder they had any ideas left. Uploaded by dougquick.com.

George Burns and Gracie Allen were husband and wife who worked together in vaudeville, movies, radio, and finally, TV. Imagine, they did 675 episodes on radio, it’s a wonder they had any ideas left when they were one of the first radio programs to make the transition to television. (They did 291 TV shows in eight seasons!)

Uploaded by whirligig-tv.co.uk.

The show was based on two constants: Gracie as a ditzy housewife, and George breaking the “fourth wall” and speaking directly to the audience, commenting on the action. The comedy emanated from Gracie’s off-kilter view of the world, and the mayhem that always ensued. One great running gag was the “hats in the closet.” A man would come in the Burns’ home, his hat would be put in the closet, and he’d be so eager to leave by the time Gracie got in his head that he’d forget his hat – and wouldn’t  dare go back for it lest Gracie start up again.

I realize that many who’ll read this have never had the opportunity to see this show. It’s been on the air from time to time, but the best I can tell, it’s not on now. The first two seasons (broadcast live) are now in the public domain, though, and you can catch full episodes on YouTube. Here’s one:

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