The Quiz Show – I Love Lucy season 1

The Quiz Show – I Love Lucy season 1, episode 5, originally aired November 12, 1951

In The Quiz Show, Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball) is strapped for cash (for the first time, but not the last) and decides to go on a quiz show to make some money and catch up on her bills.  The TV quiz show host, Freddie Fillmore (Frank Nelson, in a recurring role – better known for his recurring role on The Jack Benny Show) has a very comedic exchange with Lucy (and a seltzer bottle) before telling her what her real task is – the TV show will send an actor to their apartment, whom she must introduce to her husband Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz) as her first husband.

The Quiz Show - bum, Lucy and Ricky in the Ricardos apartment

Unfortunately, there is a bum hanging around the apartment building, and Lucy mistakes him as being the actor sent by the studio.  A very funny bit follows, as the bum wanders around the apartment purloining various items as Lucy talks about her ‘first’ husband, and the bum milks the situation for all it’s worth – until Ricky has had enough, and throws the man out – just in time for Lucy’s other first husband to show up. A very funny episode, and recommended viewing.

The Quiz Show is available as part of the season 1 I Love Lucy DVD collection.

Funny quotes from The Quiz Show – I Love Lucy

Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): What month bills are you paying?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way, oh what fun it is to ride …[trails off]

Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): I’ve been going around stalling our creditors.  I jollied them out of it.
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): Oh, you did?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Yeah.  Except that this month I’m afraid they’re going to want more money and less jolly.

Freddie Filmore (Frank Nelson): Welcome to another segment of Females are Fabulous, our very outstanding program based on the theory that any woman is willing to make an idiot of herself in order to win a prize.

Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): I see.
Freddy Filmore (Frank Nelson): Sea! (squirts Lucy with Seltzer bottle)
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): (angry) I’ve got a notion …
Freddy Filmore: Ocean! (squirts Lucy with Seltzer bottle)

[After finding out what her task is on Females are Fabulous]
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): How ’bout letting me go over Niagara Falls in a paper bag?

Harold: it’s good to see you too. I, uh, … [sees Ricky] I beg your pardon. [Heads for door]

Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): It’s really nothing dear.
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): Nothin’.
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): It’s just that a long time ago, before I met you, I was friends with …
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): You were not friends; you were married.
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Yeah, just a little bit.
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): A little bit?!?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Alright, I was married to Sam.
Harold: Harold.
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Harold.
Harold: Sam.

Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): How old were you when you got married?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): I was very young.
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): Yeah, as a matter of fact how old are you now?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): (thinks) Sixty-five.
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): What do you think I’m a dope or somethin’, you couldn’t possibly be sixty-five.
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): I couldn’t?
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): Of course not. Look at you. Fifty-five, yes, but not sixty-five.

Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): Children?
Bum: My little darlings. Where are they?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Don’t you have them?

Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Ricky, I want you to meet my second first husband.

Trivia for The Quiz Show

  • Frank Nelson, who plays Freddy Fillmore, the host of the quiz show, shows up in similar roles throughout the series, as well as other characters, knew Lucille Ball from her days on radio.
  • Frank Nelson “tortures” Lucy with a version of My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean. A very funny routine where she gets soaked with Seltzer water every time she mentions ocean, sea, or water.
  • Phil Ober, who appears as Lucy’s fictitious “long-lost first husband” was married to Vivian Vance at the time.
  • The radio quiz show was based on an actual radio quiz show of the day, Queen for a Day
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