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I Love Lucy aired for six seasons between 1951 and 1957 as a top-rated weekly sitcom, and its characters appeared in thirteen hour-long specials between 1958 and 1960. In I Love Lucy, author Lori Landay investigates the groundbreaking series and its highly charismatic stars, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, to consider the program’s impact on the conventions of the sitcom, television culture, and wider postwar culture.
In chapters that proceed chronologically through the life of the series, Landay takes an interdisciplinary cultural studies approach to understanding the wider phenomenon of I Love Lucy, with an emphasis on a variety of issues as they arise from different phases of the show. She examines the program’s efficient production system, compelling narrative formula, hilarious writing, and the technical genius behind the scenes that put it onto film. Landay also considers the show’s clever plots within a familiar situation, magnificent comic performance, and the remarkable chemistry of its actors. In addition, she studies the end of the series and its continued place in popular culture.
I Love Lucy is perhaps the most popular television show of all time, and its stars are some of the most recognizable in television history. For scholars of American television history as well as the series’ many fans, I Love Lucy will be an enjoyable and informative read.