The Celebrity Next Door


The Celebrity Next Door

(featuring Tallulah Bankhead)

The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour

When a moving van pulls up to the house next door to the Ricardos, Lucy and Ethel promptly take to the binoculars to find out who their new neghbor is. Lucy says "She must be either very rich or very poor." Ethel: "How can you tell? Lucy: "From the furniture. It's either cheap, beat-up junk, or priceless antiques." In the midst of their peeping, the new resident drops by to use the telephone, and it turns out to be none other than actress Tallulah Bankhead.

Hoping to make friends with the star, Lucy invites her to dinner with an ulterior motive in mind - she wants to persuade the woman to appear in a PTA benefit production. (Tallulah: "PT What?") To impress the Broadway headliner, Lucy cons the Mertzes into posing as the Ricardos' maid and butler, but the meal turns out to be a fiasco. Once apologies have been made all around, Tallulah agrees to co-star with Lucy and Ricky in the school show, with the "Alabama foghorn" taking over the lead.

The girls have a subsequent falling out when Lucy accidentally spray-paints Tallulah, head to toe, with yellow paint, then sits on one of Tallulah's freshly painted kitchen chairs while wearing her own brand-new black suit. Lucy decides to "get even" with the visiting celebrity by upstaging her in the PTA show, and, as usual, turns the whole thing into a shambles.

Special Notes: During rehearsal for the telephone scene, Tallulah picked up the receiver and did her scene, afterwhich she proclaimed that this was the first time a stage phone worked, she could actually hear someone on the other end. Later for the Southern dinner scene, packages of the first frozen fried chicken dinners ever manufactured were purchased and served with no one the wiser. Tallulah raved about the chicken all night, claiming it was the best fried chicken she'd ever eaten!

Bloopers: After Tallulah Bankhead storms out of the Ricardos kitchen, Lucy slams the kitchen door. As she does this, the drawstring to the blind hanging on the door sways back and forth through the window, indicating that there is no glass in the window. After Lucy passes by the kitchen window after slamming the kitchen door, she walks into the back drop making it move.

Episode #2
Season #1 (1957-58)

Aired: December 3, 1957

Jerry Thorpe (Director),
Bob Carroll Jr. (Writer),
Madelyn Davis (Writer),
Bob Schiller (Writer),
Bob Weiskopf (Writer)

Guest Star:
Tallulah Bankhead (herself)

Supporting Cast:
Keith Thibodeaux (Little Ricky),
Elvia Allman (Ida Thompson),
Richard Deacon (Butler),
Phyllis Kennedy (Maid)