Saturday, November 15, 2014
Red Skelton Show Season 01 1951-52 NBC
Sad to say that the first episode (01.01) was not released on the Early Years DVD set. Don't know the details but I was told that some episode were not released because of condition or they were not in the collection. It looks like some of the episode was filmed on kinoscope. The sponsor clip can be seen on DVD because it was used in a later episode. It was called "Quick Change". Red was showing what he had to do to change from one character to another.
New characters were introduced in this season. A character that was crying all the time was called Weepy J. Newton Numbskull. Red did have a character called Numbskull on the radio. He was a bit of a everyman. This character may have been transformed later into George Appleby. Another new character was Lord Beaverhead. He was a British newscaster. Most of the jokes were about the British and other countries. Near the end of the season, Red was telling Seagull jokes. The names of the seagulls were not the ones we know today.
There were some special episodes. Christmas was always special to Red. In mid December he did an episode where Clem was selling Christmas trees. This skit was based on an radio episode. The TV episode before Christmas, Red invited the viewers to his "home". Cast member Shirley Mitchell gets the house ready for Red's wife and two children and greets the guest; David Rose and his wife, Gene Fowler and his wife, Bo Roos (Red's manager) and Red's characters come and visit. The show ends with a boys choir and Red's views on Christmas.
The Red Skelton Show was #4 in the ratings. It was awarded two Emmys for best show and best comedian. It had a regular cast members; Lucille Knoch, Shirley Michell, Benny Rubin, Gil Perkins, Dick Ryan and "Sam". Sam main job was to pull Red under the curtain at the end of the show. The show was a big hit but things change in season 2.