In need of a new color television, Fred is upset when Lamont decides to spend the money instead on a new car. Lamont has a change of heart, however, when Fred wanders away from home and is ... See full summary »

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(teleplay by), ("The Color Problem" by) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Episode cast overview:
...
...
Slappy White ...
Melvin
...
Doctor
Noam Pitlik ...
Officer 'Swanny' Swanhauser
...
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Storyline

In need of a new color television, Fred is upset when Lamont decides to spend the money instead on a new car. Lamont has a change of heart, however, when Fred wanders away from home and is taken to the hospital - with an apparent case of amnesia. Written by Brian Rathjen <briguy_52732@yahoo.com>

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Comedy

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Release Date:

24 March 1972 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

The title is based upon the often used quote from Shakespeare's play Hamlet, "To be or not to be." See more »

Quotes

Lamont Sanford: [Comes in] Hey Pop, I'm home.
Fred G. Sanford: [Almost immediately to him] I want a new TV!
Lamont Sanford: What?
Fred G. Sanford: You heard me, and I won't take 'no' for an answer! I want a new TV!
[Melvin is standing behind Lamont, he draws a box with his fingers]
Fred G. Sanford: With a big screen!
[Melvin mimes pushing buttons on one]
Fred G. Sanford: And remote control.
[Melvin them points to his cheek]
Fred G. Sanford: And color.
[...]
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User Reviews

 
Cruising for a bruising
14 December 2016 | by (Youngstown,Ohio) – See all my reviews

"TV or Not TV" opens with Lamont's purchase of a new convertible, while Melvin (Slappy White, third of five) and Fred watch their TV set die of old age: "there's four Humphrey Bogarts and six Lauren Bacalls, now this is supposed to be a love scene, look like they're playin' basketball!" Lamont won't budge from his wheels, intending to cruise with his girlfriends, and refuses to buy a new color set for his father. Fred has a suggestion for the chicks that his son goes out with: "what's wrong with the truck, if she wants her hair to blow in the wind let her take her wig off and hold it out the window!" The next day Lamont is exultant but his father is nowhere to be seen, Officers Swanny (Noam Pitlik, third of six) and Smitty reporting him to be in the hospital with a bout of amnesia. The great Peter Bonerz (THE BOB NEWHART SHOW) plays the doctor, an ear, nose and throat specialist playing psychiatrist, discussing the fate of a previous case: "he remembered?" "no, he died!" This was the 11th episode to be adapted directly from the British STEPTOE AND SON, with only "The Piano Movers," "The Card Sharps," and "The Infernal Triangle" still ahead.


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