Show: Remembering When

Episode: 868-072 The Adventures Of Ozzie & Harriet

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Episode Description:

The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet was an American sitcom, airing on ABC from October 3, 1952 through March 26, 1966, starring the real life Nelson family. After a long run on radio, the show was brought to television where it continued its success, running on both radio and TV for a couple of years. The series stars Ozzie Nelson and his wife, singer Harriet Nelson (née Hilliard), and their young sons, David and Eric "Ricky" Nelson. Don DeFore had a recurring role as the Nelsons' friendly neighbor "Thorny".

The series attracted large audiences, and although it was never a top-ten hit, it became synonymous with the 1950s ideal American family life. It is the longest-running live-action sitcom in US television history.

Before the show aired, Ozzie Nelson persuaded ABC to agree to a 10-year contract that paid the Nelsons whether the series was canceled or not. The unprecedented contract and Ozzie's insistence for perfection in the show's production paid off in the show's remarkable popularity.

The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet premiered on ABC on October 10, 1952, staying until September 3, 1966. The show strove for realism and featured exterior shots of the Nelsons' actual southern California home at 1822 Camino Palmero Street in Los Angeles as the fictional Nelsons' home. Interior shots were filmed on a sound stage recreated to look like the real interior of the Nelsons' home. Like its radio predecessor (which finally ended in 1954), the series focused mainly on the Nelson family at home, dealing with run-of-the-mill problems. As the series progressed and the boys grew up, storylines involving various characters were introduced. Many of the series storylines were taken from the Nelsons' real life. When the real David and Rick got married, to June Blair and Kristin Harmon respectively, their wives joined the cast of Ozzie and Harriet, and the marriages were written into the series. What was seldom written into the series was Ozzie's profession or mention of his lengthy and successful band-leading career. The popular joke about his career was that the only time he left the house was to go buy ice cream. According to his granddaughter, actress Tracy Nelson, Ozzie went to Rutgers to study law and when pressed would tell interviewers that the TV Ozzie was a lawyer.

Supporting cast members (some appearing in more than 50 episodes over ten years) included Don DeFore, Parley Baer, Lyle Talbot, Mary Jane Croft, Skip Young, Gordon Jones, James Stacy, Joe Flynn and Jack Wagner.

By the mid 1960s, America's social climate was changing, and the Nelsons' all American nuclear family epitomized the 1950s values and ideals that were quickly becoming a thing of the past. Ozzie, who wrote and directed all of the series' episodes, attempted to change with the times, but most viewers related the show to a long gone era. The series cracked the top thirty programs in the Nielsen ratings for the first and only time, during its eleventh season, (1963–1964), when it ranked in 29th place. The show finally made the transition from black-and-white to color in its 1965–66 season. In that season, Ozzie tried to recapture the series' earlier success portraying a young, growing family, by introducing 9-year old Joel Davison and other boys to interact with the Nelsons and create the illusion of a younger family. Joel appeared in three episodes, but it was too late to reverse declining ratings, and ABC canceled Ozzie and Harriet in 1966.

The show ran for a total of fourteen television seasons, and for nearly four decades, held the record as the longest running American television sitcom, live or animated, until the record was broken by The Simpsons in 2004. The show is still the longest running live-action American sitcom in television history.

Episode Short Description: N/A

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[SD File Downloads]: 15

[HD File Downloads]: 0

[Total File Downloads]: 15


SD (Standard Definition) File

File Name of SD Episode: 868-072 The Adventures Of Ozzie and Harriet.mpg

Total SD Episode Video Runtime (hh:mm:ss): 00:31:46

File Size of SD Episode Video: 1,319,186,312 Bytes

Resolution of SD Episode Video: 720x480

Date SD Episode Video Uploaded: Sunday, February 3, 2013 - 13:00

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