Widower Sheriff Andy Taylor, and his son Opie, live with Andy's Aunt Bee in Mayberry, North Carolina. With virtually no crimes to solve, most of Andy's time is spent philosophizing and calming down his cousin Deputy Barney Fife.
Meek and mild mannered bookkeeper Henry Limpet has few passions in life. It's mid-1941 and he would love to join the Navy but has been rated 4F. His friend George Stickle is in the Navy and... See full summary »
The Stones consist of loving homemaker Donna, her pediatrician husband Alex, and their children Mary and Jeff. Many situations arise like when they found a baby on their doorstep or take in... See full summary »
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.
In this continuation to the "Andy Griffifth Show", Sam Jones, a local farmer, is elected to the Mayberry town council. Like Andy Taylor, Sam is a widower raising a young son named Mike. Sam also hires Aunt Bee as his housekeeper after Andy marries his sweetheart Helen Crump and moves away. The show chronicles Sam's dealings with the citizens of Mayberry as well as his home life. Written by
Brian Washington <Sargebri@att.net>
A victim of the infamous rural purge in 1971, along with The Beverly Hillbillies (1962), Hee Haw (1969), Green Acres (1965), and The Ed Sullivan Show (1948). These shows were perceived by then CBS Executive Fred Silverman to only appeal to people who lived in rural areas and older people, so he decided to cancel them, even though they were all still hugely popular at the time. See more »
I've never seen more than a couple of episodes of the Andy Griffith Show. But for some reason, I saw probably the entire run of Mayberry RFD in reruns during the mid-70s. Mainly because it happened to be on after I got home from school, most likely.
What surprises me looking back is how good an actor Ken Berry was. Generally a comic actor (and a fine dancer to boot), as Sam Jones he was essentially a straight man and his performances here were always nicely understated (too much so for some people, judging from other comments here) and very believable. From time to time, he showed quite a bit of depth.
I'm thinking right now of a couple of episodes. 1) Sam's struggling with a mild depression after some of his crops fail. 2) He and Millie are in Los Angeles (don't remember why), they have a fight and make up. Something about the emotion Ken Berry delivered in these - not too much, always knowing just how far to step outside his character's ordinary range - made then unexpectedly powerful.
I also remember an episode in which Sam does a very funny eccentric dance as part of a talent show of some kind.
The secret to a really good sit-com is that it convinces us we're watching real people, even when some of the characters are a bit outlandish. Ken Berry in this show always kept me believing I was watching real people.
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