Monday, April 18, 2011
The Greatest TV Comedies - Bewitched (1964-1971)
Yes, Bewitched is one of my favorite shows of all time. I remember when TBS would air it alongside I Dream Of Jeannie, and while I also like Jeannie, I thought Bewitched was better. Mainly because of the terrific performance of Elizabeth Montgomery as Samantha. Here is the story: Advertising executive Darrin Stephens (played by two different actors-Dick York and Dick Sargent: York was the better of the two) marries Samantha, a witch and they settle down in Westport, Connecticut at 1164 Morning Glory Circle. Samantha promised Darrin she would give up using magic to live the quiet life with him but that was easier said than done. Especially when Sam's mother Endora (played wonderfully by the great Agnes Moorehead) would pop in unannounced to stir things up. Endora and Darrin did not get along at all. She would constantly mispronounce his name and call him Durwood or Darwin. She would frequently turn Darrin into different kinds of animals or send to far away places. Of course Sam would have to do her best to bring these two together and it was never easy, but it provided plenty of laughs. Sam also had to deal with her nosy neighbor Mrs. Kravitz, who would always see Sam perform some magical trick and couldn't convince her husband of what she saw. Sam's mother wasn't the only relative to drop by. There was her dad, Maurice (played by Maurice Evans) who was debonair and doted on his daughter. But he too, despised Darrin. Sam had an uncle named Arthur (played to the hilt by Paul Lynde). Whenever Arthur showed up, it was like comedy night, as he let loose with a barrage of one liners and jokes. Next was Aunt Esmeralda (played by Alice Ghostley) who was very accident prone. Then there was Aunt Clara (Marion Lorne) who had trouble remembering certain spells. Sam even had a doctor at her beck and call named Dr. Bombay (Bernard Fox). Every fan should know the procedure for calling Dr. Bombay. Sam would recite his name several times like this: Calling Dr. Bombay..Calling Dr. Bombay. And he would magically appear right that second. And finally Sam had her wild sister Serena (Montgomery played both roles to great effect)who would constantly try to get Darrin into all kinds of trouble. That is an impressive cast list right there for supporting characters. And lets not forget Darrin's boss Larry Tate (David White) who was often confused at the antics going on at the Stephen's household. The series would eventually introduce a child into the mix as Sam and Darrin had a daughter named Tabitha (who also had magical powers).
Check out this video clip of Samantha going through some highs and lows in emotions...