Widower Sheriff Andy and his son Opie live with Andy's Aunt Bee in Mayberry NC. With virtually no crimes to solve, most of Andy's time is spent philosophizing and calming down his cousin Deputy Barney.
Widower Steve Douglas raises three sons with the help of his father-in-law, and is later aided by the boys' great-uncle. An adopted son, a stepdaughter, wives, and another generation of sons join the loving family in later seasons.
Rob, Buddy and Sally write for the Alan Brady TV show under the thumb of Brady's brother-in-law Mel. Rob and Laura live in new Rochelle next-door to Jerry and Millie. Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore played a married couple so convincingly on the show that many viewers actually thought they were married in real life. They did in fact become very close - "like siblings", as Dick Van Dyke said - and both admit they had crushes on each other while the show was in production. They have remained close friends ever since. See more »
A third variation on the tripping-on-the-ottoman opening was added in later seasons, wherein Van Dyke neither stumbles over nor skips around it, but trips on a corner attempting to do the latter, and recovers without falling. See more »
The Dick Van Dyke Show has always been one of my favorites; from the first time I saw it in syndicated reruns, to the recent dvd releases. Despite the passage of time, it still holds up. The reason? It had the best writing and performances of any show and it presented real characters in believable situations. You can argue about other classic shows, like I Love Lucy, All in The Family, MASH, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Seinfeld, or Cheers; but, in my opinion this was the finest comedy show on television.
Carl Reiner is a comedy genius who turned his own life into a comedy goldmine. After starring in an unsold pilot, he was faced with the fact he was wrong to portray his own life. With the help of Sheldon Leonard and Danny Thomas, he was able to bring Rob Petrie to life, via Dick Van Dyke. He filled the series with great actors and the best writing on television. It was a perfect format, a show about a writer for a top variety show. It lent itself to logical guest appearances and a host of unusual and amusing situations. It was filled with a cast of great characters: lovable, if klutzy Rob Petrie, beautiful and talented wife Laura, joke machine Buddy Sorrell, sarcastic and love-starved Sally Rogers, pompous, but exploited producer Mel Cooley, demanding egomaniac boss Alan Brady, neighbors Jerry and Milly Helper, and cute son Richie Petrie. Everyone had their moments.
So many of the shows were classics that it is hard to pick favorites. There are the wonderful dream stories, such as "The Gunslinger", "It May Look Like A Walnut", and "The Bad Old Days". There are the performance shows, like "The Alan Brady Show Presents", "The Sam Pomerantz Scandals", and "The Alan Brady Show Goes to Jail". There are the flashbacks to Rob and Laura's courtship and early days of marriage, as well as Rob's beginnings with the Alan Bady Show. Then there are the ones that are just plain fun, like "A Ghost of A. Chantz", "Never Bathe on Saturday", and numerous others. The shows could also be quite touching, like "Buddy Sorrel, Man and Boy". Even weaker shows had great moments.
One of the reasons the show holds up well is that it lasted only 5 seasons and didn't get a chance to wear out its welcome. Everyone was at the top of their game when they called it quits.
When the show first came to "Nick at Night," I was ecstatic. I hadn't seen the show in several years and proceeded to tape the entire premiere marathon (which meant getting up early in the morning to change tapes). Those tapes quickly became worn out. Now, I have them on dvd, complete with promos, commentaries, features and other extras. This show will continue to live on as testament to the best of television comedy. Too bad they don't make shows like this anymore.
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