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The Dancing Star

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Previous episode: Harpo Marx                Next episode: Ricky Needs an Agent

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PlotEdit

Carolyn Appleby is dropping by to visit Lucy. This makes Lucy panic, because she has bragged to Carolyn in postcards that she is great friends with all sorts of movie stars. Ethel helps give her an idea for a plan by telling Lucy that Van Johnson is down by the pool, asleep. Lucy goes down to the pool, sits beside the sleeping Van Johnson, and pretends to be having a conversation with him.

When Lucy comes back upstairs to the hotel room, Ethel tells her that Carolyn didn't see any of the Van Johnson interaction, because Carolyn lost her glasses on the plane. Lucy then pretends that there were other movie stars down at the pool besides Van, who Carolyn couldn't see. She also tells Carolyn that there's going to be a huge movie star party tomorrow, right after Carolyn leaves. Then, Lucy makes the bold move of telling Carolyn that she's very "chummy" with Van, and that she can sneak in Carolyn to watch her dance rehearsal with Van. Ethel thinks Lucy has flipped, but Lucy explains that Van's dance partner is also a redhead, and that Carolyn won't be able to tell the difference between the two redheads without her glasses.

Lucy's plan is foiled, however, when the airline finds Carolyn's glasses. So, in a frenzy, Lucy races down to the ballroom and begs Van Johnson to let her dance with him. Van agrees when he finds out Lucy has seen his show a staggering 14 times and knows every dance step. Ethel is just as starstruck as Carolyn when the girls enter the ballroom.

Back upstairs, Ricky and Fred don't understand why everyone is saying Lucy danced with Van Johnson. The phone rings, and who is it but Van asking for Lucy? Ricky is stunned to know that Lucy was telling the truth. Lucy finds out that Van's dance partner is sick and can't dance tonight. So, Van asks Lucy to dance in her place.

Lucy gets stage fright right before going on, after she finds out how many people are out in the crowd. But once she gets out on the dance floor, she warms up and does a wonderful job, twirling in her beautiful, feather-covered pink dress.

Everyone goes backstage after the show to congratulate Lucy, and guess who's part of the crowd? Carolyn Appleby! Carolyn announces that she's taking a later plane to Hawaii, so she'll be in LA an extra day to get to attend the lavish movie star party Lucy lied about. More trouble for Lucy? Watch the episode "Harpo Marx" to find out how Lucy gets out of THIS jam!

Dance with Vance: "How About You?"Edit

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Van Johnson: (singing) I like New York in June.

Lucy: June?

Van: How about you?

Lucy: Well, it's kinda hot, isn't it?

Van: I like a Gershwin tune.

Lucy: Gershwin?

Van: How about you?

Lucy: Well, I like 'em, but I can't sing 'em!

Van: I like a fireside, when the storm is due.

Lucy: Who's going to empty the ashes? You?

Van: I like potato chips, moonlight, and motor trips. How about you, dear? I'm wild about good books.

Lucy: Good books?

Van: Can't get my fill.

Lucy: What do you do? Eat 'em?

Van: And Greta Garbo's looks...

Lucy: Greta Garbo?

Van: ...give me a thrill.

Lucy: Did you see Camille?

Van: Holding hands in the movie show, when all the lights are low, may not be new.

Lucy: Yeah, well...

Van: But I like it, how about you?

Lucy: Now you're talking, boy! Yes, sir!

TriviaEdit

  • This is the first time we ever hear Carolyn Appleby wears glasses.
  • Carolyn is on her way to Honolulu, Hawaii, but she wants to drop in and visit Lucy and Ethel before joining Charlie in Hawaii.
  • In one scene, Desi mistakenly calls the character Carolyn Appleby by her original name, "Lillian."
  • When Lucy flubs her line of "dance with Van Johnson," instead saying "dance with Vance," you can clearly see her stomach muscles contracting from silent laughter. Desi ad-libs by saying, "Dance with Vance?! What's that?!" He wanted to try and make Lucy crack up.
  • Another ad-lib in this episode is a rare one from Lucy. When William Frawley says "jance" instead of "dance," Lucy remarks, "You're just as nervous as I am!" William Frawley responds with, "I know it!'
  • Van Johnson's redheaded dance partner is named Hazel.
  • The scene with Lucy dancing with Van Johnson in her feather dress is actress Fran Drescher's favorite I Love Lucy moment. Fran said on the 50th anniversary special that, as a child, she would watch this scene in awe and amazement of how beautiful and talented Lucy was, and that this was one of the things that inspired her to be an actress. She loved the realism of Lucy patting her face with nervous excitement backstage after she finished dancing. Fran was such a big Lucy fan that she even had an I Love Lucy-themed episode of her hit show The Nanny.
  • There must be more than one version of the lyrics to "How About You?" Van Johnson sings about Greta Garbo's looks giving a thrill, but when Frank Sinatra made a recording of the song for his hit album "Songs for Swingin' Lovers" in 1956, Frank sings about "James Durante's looks."
  • Van Johnson was a very good friend of Lucy and Desi's. He starred with both of them in the 1940 movie Too Many Girls, and Van met Desi when the two of them did the Broadway version of Too Many Girls prior to 1940. Ray Bolger was originally going to be the guest star for this episode, but he was replaced with Van. Desi and Lucy wanted Van to be a guest star on the show very badly, since they were so close with him. He would have been the guest star in episode #122 (instead being replaced by Cornel Wilde), if he hadn't been unable to come when that episode was filmed.
  • We learn that Lucy did see Clark Gable on her trip, even though he never appears on the show. Lucy spotted Clark at Perino's one day during lunch.
  • Lucy tells Carolyn that Cary Grant, Walter Pidgeon, and Marlon Brando are coming to her fake party the next day. At the end of the episode, Carolyn remarks that she can't wait to see "Clark, Bing, and Cary," so Lucy must have also told Carolyn that Clark Gable and Bing Crosby would be at the fake party.
  • If you listen closely during Van and Lucy's evening dance performance, after Van sings the part about "moonlight and motor trips," he quietly coaxes Lucy to smile as a way to relax in front of the crowd.
  • Ricky will be glad to know that Lucy will remain faithful to him even when sexy movie stars hit on her. She sternly pantomimes that she's married by waggling her wedding ring when the sleeping Van Johnson unknowingly puts his hand on her lap.
  • Van Johnson's rehearsal starts at 2 pm.

QuotesEdit

  • Lucy: Somehow, [Carolyn]'s gotten the idea that I'm surrounded by movie stars.

Fred: Now, how in the world did she get an idea like that, I'm pretty sure?

  • Ethel: Listen- if Einstein can't work out a problem, you don't hand it to Mortimer Snerd!
  • Ethel: We can go down [to the pool] and carry [Van Johnson] up here without waking him up. And then we could put him on the couch, and when Carolyn gets here, we'll say he's a friend of ours, and he just dropped by to take a nap.

Lucy: Thank you, Mortimer Snerd!

  • Lucy: So, you didn't see us [without your glasses]?

Carolyn: Well, I saw two redheaded blurs. Ethel told me it was you and Van Johnson.

Lucy: Well, that's a shame. Gee, that means that you didn't see Clark gable or Walter Pidgeon or Hedy Lamarr. They were all down by the pool.

  • Lucy: You know, Carolyn, Van and I have gotten very chummy. Yes, as a matter of fact, he asked me to rehearse with him this afternoon.

Carolyn: What?

Ethel: What?!

Lucy: Yeah, and, you know, Carolyn, if you promise to be very quiet, I could have Ethel sneak you in the back of the ballroom, and you can watch the rehearsal.

  • Ethel: Lucy, you had such a fascinating little mind. I kind of hate to see it go.
  • Ethel: Oh, your little mind wasn't gone. It was just catnapping!
  • Lucy: How could you ever have doubted me?

Ethel: I was a fool!

  • Ethel: (on the phone) And, Fred, if you come to watch the rehearsal, I want you to be sure and bring your GLASSES, so you can see as well as CAROLYN can!

Lucy: Carolyn found her glasses?!

Ethel: You guessed it, Fred, ol' girl... I mean, "boy"!

  • Lucy: (explaining to Van how she's lied to friends about meeting celebrities) You know, anything to brighten up their drab little lives.
  • Van Johnson: Who's gonna be here any minute?

Lucy: Carolyn Appleby, who do you think?!

Van: You'll pardon me, madam, but you're talkin' nutsy-cuckoo!

  • Lucy: (to Van) I'll name my next child after you, if I have one. If I don't, I'll change the name of the one I already have!
  • Carolyn: I just can't get over the way you rub elbows with all the celebrities out here.

Lucy: Well, that's true. Our elbows are practically raw.

Carolyn: And wait'll the girls hear about you dancing with Van Johnson!

Lucy: You be sure and tell 'em!

  • Fred: [Lucy]'s told so many of those wild stories, she's beginning to believe 'em herself!

Ethel: No! I was there, and I saw her [dance with Van Johnson]!

Fred: Well, whatever Lucy's got, it's catchin'!

  • Ricky: "Vance with Dance"?! What is that?! She's gone, completely!
  • Fred: I guess you can jance, uh, dance just as well aslone with [Van] as out there with all those people.

Lucy: You're more nervous than I am!

Fred: Yes, I know it!

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