DVD Review “Here’s Lucy: The Complete Series”

HeresLucy_CompleteActors: Lucille Ball, Gale Gordon, Lucie Arnaz, Desi Arnaz Jr.
Number of discs: 24
Rated: NR (Not Rated)
Studio: MPI HOME VIDEO
DVD Release Date: March 25, 2014
Run Time: 4320 minutes

Series: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 4 out of 5 stars

After “I Love Lucy” ended in 1958, Lucille Ball went on to star in two other very successful series. The first being “The Lucy Show”, which ran on CBS from 1962 to 1968 (156 Episodes) to “Here’s Lucy” which ran from 1968 to 1974 (144 episodes). In “Here’s Lucy”, the show brought back veteran Gale Gordon along with Lucille Ball’s own real-life children, Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr. I wanted alive during the original airing of this show but I recall it quite fondly due to syndication. There was also something about Lucille Ball that I just loved, could have been a first crush, who knows. She is an amazing actress, as well as very funny all throughout here career (except for “Life with Lucy” that will be try and forget). Thanks to MPI Home Video we are getting the complete series of “Here’s Lucy” with all 144 uncut and digitally remastered episodes together for the first time on DVD as a box set.

Like “The Lucy Show”, there was no shortage of guest stars for this show. It was a little slow in the beginning but in the last few seasons had a “guest star of the week”. When I say guest stars, I mean some of the biggest names in Hollywood at the time including Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, Andy Griffith, Joan Rivers, Danny Thomas, Steve Lawrence & Eydie Gorme, Frankie Avalon, Eddie Albert, Milton Berle, Chuck Connors, Ed McMahon, Don Knotts, Donny Osmond, Eva Gabor, Joe Namath, Petula Clark, Ricardo Montalban, Elsa Lanchester and many many more. Speaking of as the show went on this show actually got better and better in the first few seasons. In fact, the third was definitely the best in my eyes. After that the show was still good but was on a slight decline though still quite enjoyable.

This Complete Series box set comes complete with each of the 144 episodes from this series, totaling up 4320 minutes, which would literally take you six days straight to watch in a row without bathroom breaks or food. Along with each season DVD, there is TONS of great special features included. Season one comes with new episode introductions on every single episode from either Lucie Arnaz or Desi Arnaz, Jr. and a few other surprises including Joseph Ruskin, Peggy Rae, Wayne Newton, and Bruce Gordon. The rest of the special features are located on disc 4. There is a feature on “Making the Main Title”, which is a cool animation sequence. “Meet the Carters” is a featurette with Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr. talking about the series. “Let’s Talk to Lucy” is a radio program where Lucy interviews her co-star from “Here’s Lucy. feature. There are “Screen Tests” included but not from this show, which is strange, it is from the 1968 film “Yours, Mine, and Ours” for Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr.

Still we season one we have “Slide Show”, which is a collection of photos from the first season with music in the background. Next is “Treasures from Lucy’s Vault”, this again isn’t directly related to “Here’s Lucy” but still a nice addition. “I Love Lucy Home Videos” is home movies from being on the road with “The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour”. “Lucy at LAX” contains extended footage shot for the episode “Lucy and the Great Airport Chase”. “The Chase” is a 1965 home video of Lucy and her husband, Gary Morton. “Lucy the Model” are a few more short videos of Lucy doing a little bit of modeling. Finally in the vault, “Golfing with Gleason” is footage of Gary Morton and Lucille Ball playing golf with Jackie Gleason. Lastly there are “Production Files” and tons of original CBS-TV Network & Syndication promos.

Season two brings us some more extras including new episode introductions on every single episode from either Lucie Arnaz or Desi Arnaz, Jr. Then again on disc 4 there are more extras including the featurette “Here’s Lucy: On Location” where Lucie Arnaz, Desi Arnaz, Jr. and others talk about producing episodes outside of the studio. “Let’s Talk to Lucy: Carol Burnett” is a radio interview with Carol Burnett from 1964. “Lucy Sings” is a short extra with Lucy performing on stage. “Lucie and Wayne Newton” is cool vintage footage with Lucie Arnaz talking and performing with with Wayne Newton in front of an audience. We again have another set of “Treasures From Lucy’s Vault”, which is more home videos including “Air Force Academy Adventures”, “Roll ‘Em On the River”, “Lucy Scouts the Rapids”, “At Home With Desi, Jr.” and “USC Honors Lucy”. Lastly there are “Production Files”, a slideshow and tons of original CBS-TV Network & Syndication promos.

Season three starts off with new episode introductions on every single episode from either Lucie Arnaz or Desi Arnaz, Jr. Then again on disc 4 there are more extras including the featurettes and the usual Let’s Talk to Lucy, Treasures from Lucy’s Vault, Production Files, Slide Show and Syndication Promos. A few highlights are “Lucy Meets the Burtons: A Comedic Gem” which is a new featurette with interviews from Lucie Arnaz, Production Executive Howard Rayfiel, Producer Cleo Smith, Columnist James Bacon, Property Master Ken Wescott, Television Critic Cecil Smith, Cue Card Operator Tommy Tucker, Hairstylist Irma Kusely, Writer Madelyn Davis and Carole Cook talking about the series. Also “Lucy with Jack Benny” from a 1971 special called “Everything You Wanted to Know About Jack Benny… But Were Afraid to Ask.” Lucy performs along with John Wayne and George Burns appearing.

If you aren’t seeing a trend here, they extras are pretty similar on each season. Season four continues the trend with new episode introductions on every single episode from either Lucie Arnaz or Desi Arnaz, Jr. Then again on disc 4 there are more extras including the featurettes and the usual Let’s Talk to Lucy, Treasures from Lucy’s Vault, Production Files, Slide Show and Syndication Promos. A few highlights “Here’s Harry”, which is a retrospective on Gale Gordon and features Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr. talking about him and his career. “Let’s Talk to Lucy: Dinah Shore” is another interview with Lucy from her radio program chatting with Dinah Shore.

Almost done here, season five includes the new episode introductions on every single episode from either Lucie Arnaz or Desi Arnaz, Jr. Then again on disc 4 there are more extras including the featurettes and the usual Let’s Talk to Lucy, Treasures from Lucy’s Vault, Production Files, Slide Show and Syndication Promos. A few highlights are “Here’s Lucy Spotlight: Desi Arnaz, Jr.”, which features Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr. talking about the actor’s career. “Let’s Talk to Lucy: Frank Sinatra”, one of my favorite since I love ole blue eyes, is a full audio clip of a radio interview that Lucy did with Frank Sinatra in 1965.

Finally the last season is here, how does anyone even have time to watch this entire series and then ALL of these special features. Season six doesn’t have the new episode introductions on every single episode from either Lucie Arnaz or Desi Arnaz, Jr…just kidding wanted to see if you were paying attention. Yes, they are also included on this season. Then again on disc 4 there are more extras including the featurettes and the usual Let’s Talk to Lucy, Treasures from Lucy’s Vault, Production Files, Slide Show and Syndication Promos. A few highlights “Let’s Talk to Lucy” which is more radio interviews that Lucy did with Andy Griffith on her radio show in March 1965. “Lucy on the Tennessee Ernie Ford Special” (8:36) is a fun skit from the 1968 Tennessee Ernie Ford Special. “Lucy and Vivian Vance on Dinah!” is an extended interview of Lucy from Dinah Shore’s show in 1975 where we get to see Lucy with a new look. Lastly there is a “Film Short: For a Wonderful Life!” introduced by Lucille Ball and Lucie Arnaz.

Share this article

Speak Your Mind

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *