The Abbott and Costello Show (1952–1953)

TV Series  -   -  Comedy | Family
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Bud and Lou are unemployed actors living in Mr. Fields' boarding house. Lou's girlfriend Hillary lives across the hall. Any premise would lead to slapstick, puns, lots of gimmicks from their movies.

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Unknown   1958   1954   1953   1952  

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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...
 Bud Abbott (52 episodes, 1952-1954)
...
 Lou Costello (52 episodes, 1952-1954)
Sid Fields ...
 Sid Fields / ... (50 episodes, 1952-1954)
Gordon Jones ...
 Mike Kelly / ... (34 episodes, 1952-1953)
...
 Hercules / ... (26 episodes, 1952-1954)
Hillary Brooke ...
 Hillary Brooke / ... (23 episodes, 1952-1953)
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Storyline

Bud and Lou are unemployed actors living in Mr. Fields' boarding house. Lou's girlfriend Hillary lives across the hall. Any premise would lead to slapstick, puns, lots of gimmicks from their movies.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Family

Certificate:

TV-G | See all certifications »
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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

14 September 1957 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Abbott ja Costello  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(52 episodes)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During filming, one camera was always kept on Lou Costello because he was constantly improvising. The funniest bits of business were then edited into the episode whether they had anything to do with the storyline or not. See more »

Quotes

[Mr. Davis walks into bedroom, crash is heard, and Abbott looks in]
Sidney: What's wrong?
Bud Abbott: No floor.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cheers: Don't Paint Your Chickens (1989) See more »

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User Reviews

All of the greatest Burlesque routines done for the ages
4 August 2004 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

The raison d'etre of these 52 shows is the desire of Lou Costello to leave behind definitive versions of all of their burlesque and vaudeville routines. Most of these were not original, some having circulated since Plautus. Floogle Street (also known, incorrectly, as the Susquehanna Hat Company), Crazy House,

Niagara Falls (Slowly I Turn) were all such staples that every new burlesque comic was expected to know them in case they were needed to fill in at a moments notice. They were part of the stock repertoire. What Abbott and Costello did was present the absolute perfect version of each bit. It was this absolute perfection which caused them to rise to the very top of burlesque, and to, uniquely, make the transition to the mass medium of films.

They did these bits in their films but they were usually compromised by having plots and sub plots and romance and songs and whatever the studio executives or their agents (actually the same person) thought people who went to the movies wanted. Comparing their late films with the TV series is night and day. They look old and tired and out of shape in the films but crisp and perfectly timed on TV. The big difference with the TV series is that Lou Costello was in complete charge and did things his way. Absolutely the ne plus ultra of the burlesque comic genre, pardon my French.

One day the National Film Registry will have to list the entire series as a national treasure. Lou Costello was right and their act was for the ages and this black and white series preserves it perfectly. Meanwhile watch that bit again where Mr. Bacciagalupe (I still call my greengrocer Mr. Bacciagalupe) convinces Lou that two bananas are really three bananas. Also the routine where Abbott convinces Costello not to let Mike the Cop push them around which keeps getting Lou hit on the head which is so much like modern international politics that it's frightening.

P.S. Doing my Joe Besser ('Stinky') impression got me out of the draft.


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