June isn't sure it's a good idea when eccentric Uncle Billy comes to stay with the boys while she and Ward spend the week-end at the lake with friends. But when Beaver is caught trying to ... See full summary »



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Episode complete credited cast:
Kevin Jones ...
William Woodson ...
Mr. Gaines
Martin Dean ...
The Usher
Uncle Billy Cleaver


June isn't sure it's a good idea when eccentric Uncle Billy comes to stay with the boys while she and Ward spend the week-end at the lake with friends. But when Beaver is caught trying to sneak his friend Gilbert through the back door of the movie theater, he's glad that it's his good-natured uncle who gets the call from the theater manager and not his parents. Written by shepherd1138

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baseball cap | See All (1) »


Comedy | Family





Release Date:

21 March 1963 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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William 'Uncle Billy' Cleaver: Your usher claims he saw my nephew let this friend of his in the exit door.
Mr. Gaines: Yes, sir.
William 'Uncle Billy' Cleaver: I see. Now Beaver. I know you have your side of this story. Theodore, did you open that door so your friend could sneak in?
Theodore 'Beaver' Cleaver: Well, yes sir, but I...
William 'Uncle Billy' Cleaver: Mr. Gaines. I want to thank you for calling me down here. I want to apologize for my nephew's actions. I've always been very fond of this boy. But right now I'm almost ashamed to have him for a nephew.
[Uncle Billy pauses]
William 'Uncle Billy' Cleaver: What do you think would be the right ...
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References The Lone Ranger (1949) See more »

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User Reviews

The Return of Uncle Billy
19 November 2015 | by (Alexandria, VA) – See all my reviews

Ward's Uncle Billy was established in an earlier episode as a world traveler, high roller, teller of tall tales and all-around colorful character - a "senior delinquent," in his own words. In this episode Billy is staying with Wally and Beaver while Ward and June spend a weekend at the lake. It starts out as paradise for all concerned, with the "fun uncle" cooking a barbecue, letting the boys sleep late, and taking care of the house chores while the boys pursue their leisure activities. But then Beaver blows everything by getting in trouble at the movie theater: he facilitates his pal Gilbert's sneaking in without a ticket, and both boys get caught. Billy is called to the theater, and to say he is angry and disappointed with Beaver is to put it mildly. It's not so much the misdeed itself that rankles Billy (he jumped plenty of fences himself in his day), but that Beaver mistook him for a pushover. Thus Uncle Billy shows that he is a more serious person than we (or Beaver) had suspected.

The old sitcoms were sometimes known to bring guest characters back for a second or even a third episode (one thinks of Malcolm Merriweather on THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW). Here's a second appearance that doesn't feel a bit redundant. The writers clearly saw an opportunity to flesh out and deepen the character of Uncle Billy, and they succeeded. A telling detail (LITB is all about the telling details): when the movie theater manager calls Billy he is napping disheveled in the easy chair, but then we see him carefully put himself together - suit, tie, homburg hat and all - and go out the door; we gather that this is a man whose childlike sense of fun is governed by a strict ethical code and a love for order. The scene in the cinema manager's office is given extra gravity by having the theater manager act like a character out of DRAGNET. Edgar Buchanan inhabits the role of Uncle Billy like an old glove. For all his stern morality in this episode, by the end he's back to being the jovial relative we all knew and loved.

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