Monday, July 6, 2015

The Burns and Allen Show---Not Just For Radio--TV Too!

My daughter and I have listened to "The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show" on Old Time Radio for a few years now and we love it. 
Just recently, I discovered some of their TV episodes from the early 1950s on You Tube. 
Both Burns and Allen were comedy geniuses, but I gotta say, Gracie just takes the cake!  She is SO funny, both in what she says, and what she does as she's delivering her lines. 
Here is a funny clip (only 4 minutes long) where Gracie tells a story about standing in line at the store.  Funny stuff!
 One of the things I love about the early shows (I've only seen a few from seasons 1 & 2) is the fact that George Burns completely "breaks the fourth wall" and talks directly to the audience.
Here, George is standing just beside the set of his house, talking to the audience.  We are getting "the scoop" on why he won't be buying a new dress for Gracie.
The set was an "open" type of set.  George would jump into the house setting, run through the house and out the side door.
Neighbor, Harry, has just walked onstage, George needs to talk to him.  He doesn't just tap him on the shoulder...
...George hops into his house, runs across the living room and to the back door....
...and walks out the door just in time to catch Harry walking by.
 Below is the full PILOT episode from 1950.  George Burns begins by talking to the audience and introducing us to the characters and settings.  The show is a full half-hour and fun to watch.  (Not to sound mean...but the loud, cackle-type of laugh we hear coming from the audience is only there the first few minutes of the show).
My favorite scenes from the pilot episode is this dialog between George and Gracie.  Gracie has just walked in with a large bouquet of carnation flowers.  (keep in mind that their sponsor was Carnation Milk).
George:  "Well, what beautiful flowers!"
Gracie: "Aren't they lovely?  And if it weren't for you I wouldn't have them."
George: "Me?  What did I have to do with it?"
Gracie: "Well, it was your idea.  You said when I went to visit Clara Bagly in the hospital, to take her when she wasn't lookin', I did."
George:  "Gracie!  I ah...Look, I said for you to..."
Gracie:  "Isn't it good they're carnations, dear?  I'll put them in the refrigerator, we'll milk 'em later."
That's all for today.  Until another time, have a happy, vintage day!

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