Lucy finds out that Ricky needs a girl to do a commercial for the sponsor of his upcoming Saturday night variety show. She pleads with Ricky to let her do the commercial, even pretending to do a commercial from the inside of her TV set. Her plan only makes Ricky angry that she destroyed the TV's insides by doing this. But Lucy gets her own way when she manages to talk the girl supposed to do the commercial into thinking that another girl got the part.
Lucy waltzes down to the TV studio, all set to promote the new sponsored health tonic, Vitameatavegamin. She does a great job reciting her lines... until it comes time to actually taste the nutritional enhancer she's supposed to be hawking. It is absolutely noxious, and Lucy isn't doing a very good job of telling people to buy this stuff with a look of disgust on her face. So, the director keeps having he redo the tasting part, not realizing that the elixir contains a very large amount of alcohol in it. Lucy soon becomes as drunk as a Roman emperor, reciting the commercial with slurred and mixed-up words. She is too plowed to perform, but she somehow wanders out during Ricky's opening number and still gets to be in the show.
Since the Vitameatavegamin commercial is considered such an important quote from the show, the full commercial will be written here, instead of buried in the quotes section:
Lucy: Hello, friends, I'm your Vitameatavegamin girl! Are you tired, rundown, listless? Do you poop out at parties? Are you unpopular? The answer to all your problems is in this little bottle, Vitameatavegamin. Vitameatavegamin contains vitamins, meat, vegetables, and minerals. Yes, with Vitameatavegain, you can spoon your way to health. All you have to do is take a tablespoonful after every meal. It's so tasty, too! (tastes spoonful) It's just like candy! So, why don't you join the thousands of happy, peppy people, and get a great big bottle of Vitameatavegamin tomorrow? That's Vita-meata-vega-min! (winks at camera).
- The Vitameatavegamin scene is usually considered to be the most-famous moment of the series and Lucille Ball's best acting moment.
- Vitameatavegamin is 23% alcohol (46 proof).
- The cast and crew looked high and low to find the perfect substance to act as Vitameatavegamin. They wanted it to be something Lucy could drink a lot of and something that had the perfect viscous quality. They finally settled on apple pectin, and Lucy said it was very sickening to drink that much of the sweet liquid.
- The original script had an end scene where Lucy has a bad hangover from too much Vita. Ethel goes to the store and brings Lucy home some Vita to help spoon her way back to health! This scene was cut for time.
- Besides lines from the actual commercial part (such as "spoon your way to health"), the two slogans for Vitameatavegamin were "Join the parade. Buy Vitameatavegamin today." and "Vitameatavegamin for health."
- Only hardcore fans can pronounce "Vitameatavegamin" with ease and perfection. Many fans have trouble pronouncing it. No wonder poor Lucy had such trouble when she was drunk. It's a hard word to say when SOBER!
- Desi said that it was virtually impossible to keep from laughing during the part where Lucy has to prove to Ricky that she's fit to do the commercial. Desi had to bite the inside of his cheeks to keep from laughing out loud, and you can see in the episode how he's struggling not to lose it. During other parts of the commercial, Desi clearly was watching from the audience, and you can hear his very distinct laugh.
- Ethel doesn't appear in this episode. She's off visiting her mother.
- When Lucy's "test commercial" from inside the TV set originally was filmed, she imitated the Phillp Morris bellboy and said several Phillip Morris references. These were cut from syndication. The DVD restores the original footage.
- Lucy ends up reporting to the Studio 10, television center, at 1 pm, the time the other girl was supposed to be there by.
- Lucy uses her maiden name as McGillicuddy for an alias, something she will do throughout the season.
- Ricky wants to keep Lucy's failed sock darning attempt as a blackjack.
- The Lucy Ricardo Show aired at 4:23 pm.
- We never get to find out what happened regarding the Vitameatavegamin commercial, whether they scrapped it or found someone else to do it. Hopefully, they were taping while Lucy was practicing, because she does one take very well right before she started becoming drunk. She was able to take the Vitameatavegamin without a look of disgust on her face.
- This episode was so popular the first time it aired that they cast and crew got many letters/requests to re-air the episode. They did so later in the series' run.
- According to an article on the MeTV website dated 4/17/17, the dress Lucy wears in this episode is now owned by actress Laura Dern. See http://www.metv.com/stories/lucys-iconic-vitameatavegamin-dress-has-a-famous-home to read the entire article.
- Lucy: It's the Lucy Ricardo Show! Da-da-da-da!
Ricky: This doesn't look like such a hot show, Fred. I'm going to go change the channel.
Lucy: As our first offering this evening... (sees Ricky out of his seat) Stop that, and go back
and sit down!
- Ricky: (sees Lucy come out of TV to pick up dropped cigarettes) Well, what do you know! Third-dimensional television!
- Ricky: What do you want me to do? Starve to death?!
Lucy: Would you, please?
- Mildly Drunk Lucy: The answer to all your problems is in this bittle lottle! Uh, "little bottle"!
- Drunk Lucy: Do you pop out at parties? Are you un-poop-u-lar? Well, are you? Vitameatavegamin contains vitamins and meat and medge-a-ta-bles and vinerals!
- Drunk Lucy: It's so tasty, too! It's just like candy! Honest! (laughs)
- Drunk Lucy: So, everybody go and get a bottle of... this stuff...
- Drunk Lucy: (into TV camera) Hi, Fred! Hi, Ethel!