IMDb > "General Electric Theater" I'm a Fool (1954)

"General Electric Theater" I'm a Fool (1954)

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Sherwood Anderson (short story)
Arnold Schulman (adaptation)
View company contact information for I'm a Fool on IMDbPro.
Original Air Date:
14 November 1954 (Season 3, Episode 8)
A man tells the story of his coming to adulthood when he left home at age 18 and learned the consequences of telling a lie to impress a girl. | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
Bragging Rights and Wrongs See more (4 total) »


 (Episode Cast) (in credits order)

Eddie Albert ... Narrator

James Dean ... The Boy

Natalie Wood ... Lucy
Roy Glenn ... Burt
Eve March ... Mother
Leon Tyler ... Wilbur
Gloria Castillo ... Elinor
Fiona Hale ... Mildred
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Ronald Reagan ... Himself - Host

Episode Crew
Directed by
Don Medford 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Sherwood Anderson  short story
Arnold Schulman  adaptation

Produced by
Mort Abrahams .... producer
Arnold Schulman .... associate producer
Art Direction by
John Robert Lloyd 
Other crew
Theodore Apstein .... story editor
Don Herbert .... progress reporter
Ronald Reagan .... program supervisor

Series Crew
These people are regular crew members. Were they in this episode?
Directed by
Leslie H. Martinson 
John Brahm (episode "Auf Wiederschen")
Charles F. Haas (episode "My Dark Days-Aftermath: Part 2") (episode "My Dark Days-Prelude: Part 1") (as Charles Haas)
Don Medford (episode "I Am a Fool")
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Sherwood Anderson  story (episode "I Am a Fool")
Leo Davis  adaptation (episode "Martry, The")
Steve McNeil  writer
George Milburn  story (episode "Wish Book The")
Marion Miller  autobiography (episode "My Dark Days-Prelude: Part 1")
Marion Miller  (episode "My Dark Days-Aftermath: Part 2")
Shirley Peterson  (episode "Song Caruso Sang, mThe")
Arnold Peyser  writer
Lois Peyser  writer
Thomas Nord Riley  uncredited
Arnold Schulman  adaptation (episode "I Am a Fool")
Arthur Steuer  (episode "Mr. Ocean Blue")

Produced by
Tony Barr .... associate producer (as Anthony Barr)
Costume Design by
Vincent Dee 
Music Department
Lloyd R. Apperson .... musician
Fenton Jones .... musician
Other crew
Douglas Benton .... story editor
Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

30 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Narrator:Well, I always say: Put up a good front and the world is yours, you know?See more »
Movie Connections:
Version of I'm a Fool (1977) (TV)See more »


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9 out of 10 people found the following review useful.
Bragging Rights and Wrongs, 1 August 2008
Author: wes-connors from Los Angeles

In this short drama, James Dean takes on Sherwood Anderson's restless Ohio youth. Writer Anderson's "I'm a Fool" originally appeared in his collection "Horses and Men"; and, the author is known to have influenced John Steinbeck, who authored of "East of Eden". Mr. Dean completed the film version of writer Steinbeck's "Eden" over the summer (it was not yet released). Natalie Wood appears in this "Fool", cast as the young woman Dean falls in love with. Ms. Wood would soon start filming "Rebel Without a Cause"; so, this is almost a "try-out" for "Rebel". In a completely unrelated event, "Fool" was re-made for PBS, in 1976, with Ron Howard and Amy Irving; although, Ms. Irving appeared almost simultaneously in William Bast's biography "James Dean".

In "I'm a Fool", Dean plays "The Boy" aka "Walter Mathers" alongside Eddie Albert's on-screen narration of the same character. It's an interesting, but not altogether successful, juxtaposition. Although each performs well, Dean and Albert do not truly seem like the same character. The play is also "impressionistic" in technique; for example, you will see characters walking around partial and painted sets. This does, at times, distract from the story, which concerns the consequences of Dean's lying to impress Wood's "Lucy Wessen". Wood performs exceptionally well with Dean, and they look great together; this was not a commonly found feature with Dean's female TV co-stars. Wood was wisely signed to appear with Dean on the big screen.

Though rendered slightly inaccessible in its state and style, the story is a good one. Albert and Dean convey the tragedy of foolishness. Roy Glenn (as Burt) is terrific in his supporting role. When this teleplay was repeated, on November 18, 1956, then host Ronald Reagan appeared in a new introduction, which included him saying "those of us who worked with Jimmy Dean." It seems like a foolish enough claim to include in the script; but, Mr. Reagan did co-star with Dean, in another television drama.

****** I'm a Fool (11/14/54) Don Medford ~ James Dean, Eddie Albert, Natalie Wood, Roy Glenn

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