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Mary Tyler Moore, Dick Van Dyke, The Dick Van Dyke Show, "The Twizzle," 1962

"The Dick Van Dyke Show"

Season 1, Episode 23: "The Twizzle"

Original TV broadcast of episode: February 28, 1962

 

The episode had guest star singer and actor Jerry Lanning (b. May 17, 1943) as a young singer who invented a new dance called "The Twizzle." Lanning appeared in a number of Broadway musicals and appeared during his career as a regular on the daytime soap operas "Guiding Light," "Another World," and "Search for Tomorrow," as well as the 1980s drama "Texas." Also appearing in the episode was veteran actor and song-and-dance man Jack Albertson (June 16, 1907 - November 25, 1981). Albertson is likely best remembered for his role on the 1970s sitcom "Chico and the Man," as well as the many TV guest appearances he made on cop shows and Westerns.

 

Episode synopsis, via <a href="http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0559850/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1"IMDb:

Sally drags the entire gang to a bowling alley when she discovers a new dance sensation that's sure to sweep the nation.

 

Carl Reiner's brilliant sitcom brainchild, "The Dick Van Dyke Show," ran from 1961 through 1966. The American show was nominated for a number of Emmys and won 15, as well as winning several Golden Globes and other awards. The classic, sophisticated comedy show revolved around the New York work life and home life of TV comedy writer Rob Petrie, and starred TV newcomer Dick Van Dyke (b. December 13, 1925). Others in the stellar cast were Mary Tyler Moore (December 29, 1936 - January 25, 2017), Rose Marie (b. August 15, 1923), Morey Amsterdam (December 14, 1980 - October 28, 1996), Richard Deacon (May 14, 1921 - August 8, 1984), Larry Mathews (b. August 15, 1955), Jerry Paris (July 25, 1925 - March 31, 1986), Ann Morgan Guilbert (October 16, 1928 - June 14, 2016), and Carl Reiner (b. March 20, 1922). In 2002, the show was ranked at 13 on "TV Guide's 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time" and in 2013, it was ranked at 20 on their list of the 60 Best Series. The show was produced by Reiner with Bill Persky and Sam Denoff. Earle Hagen composed the music for the show's memorable opening theme.

 

Some trivia about the show and its actors, via IMDb:

Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore played a married couple so convincingly on the show that many viewers actually thought they were married in real life. They did in fact become very close - "like siblings", as Dick Van Dyke said - and both admit they had crushes on each other while the show was in production. They have remained close friends ever since.

 

A small controversy occurred because of Mary Tyler Moore wearing Capri pants on the show. Up until the show's premiere, most housewives were seen on TV in dresses, but Moore's explanation was that most of the housewives she knew wore pants. The network was against this at first, and said that she had to be in a skirt for a certain number of scenes per episode. To fight this, they filmed a scene where Laura walked into the kitchen in Capri pants and came out a second later in a skirt. The network finally relented. Because of Moore, Capri pants became a huge fashion craze in the early 1960's.

 

For the first three seasons of the show, Alan Brady's face was never seen, but his voice was occasionally heard, because Carl Reiner wanted to get a big star to play Alan. Reiner eventually decided to take on the role himself as the newest on-screen star.

 

Dick Van Dyke took a big chance agreeing to do this show because in order to do it, he had to leave the Broadway hit show "Bye Bye Birdie" for which he won a Tony Award. If the show was not a hit, he would have been out of work.

 

The show's pilot was created by Carl Reiner and was highly autobiographical. CBS executives decided that the main character was too Jewish, too intellectual, and too New York and cast Dick Van Dyke instead of Reiner.

 

The show's production company was called Calvada Productions. The name came from the names of all of the key persons involved in production: Carl Reiner (C-A), Sheldon Leonard (L), Dick Van Dyke (V-A), and Danny Thomas (D-A). In the episode "Big Max Calvada," co-producer Leonard played the character role of "Big Max Calvada".

 

"The Dick Van Dyke Show: My Blonde-Haired Brunette" (1961) (when Laura dyed her hair blonde, temporarily) was the ninth episode filmed during the first season, but it was the second episode to be aired, because Carl Reiner was so impressed with Mary Tyler Moore's rapid development that he wanted to highlight her in an episode as soon as possible. He had thoughts of it being the series' debut.

 

Carl Reiner and the other writers were very careful not to use any 1960's slang in the show's scripts. In fact, references to any time period or current events are very few and far between.

 

The character of Sally Rogers, played by Rose Marie, was inspired by Lucille Kallen (who wrote for "Your Show of Shows" (1950), and Selma Diamond (who wrote for "Caesar's Hour" (1954). Rose Marie was meant to be the female star of the show, but Mary Tyler Moore surprised everyone by becoming the breakout star, bigger than even Dick Van Dyke.

 

Three episodes were filmed without a live audience. First, was "The Bad Old Days" (1962) originally televised on Wednesday, April 4, 1962. It used extra sped-up filmed inserts during Rob's dream of a 1920s lifestyle, which made shooting in front of an audience impractical. Second was "Happy Birthday and Too Many More" (1964), because the cast were grieving after the assassination of Pres. John F. Kennedy in Dallas Texas, on Friday, November 22, 1963. The third one was "The Gunslinger" (1966), which was filmed on location without a live audience.

 

According to Dick Van Dyke, viewers used to make bets (during the opening credits of seasons 2, 3, 4, & 5) on whether or not Rob Petrie would stumble over the ottoman when walking through the door of his house. A third variation on the tripping-on-the-ottoman opening was added in later seasons, wherein Van Dyke neither stumbles over nor skips around it, but trips on a corner attempting to do the latter, and recovers without falling.

 

After "The Dick Van Dyke Show," composer Earle Hagen also wrote the theme songs for three others. In order, they are "Gomer Pyle: USMC" (1964), "That Girl" (1966), and "Mod Squad" (1968).

 

Carl Reiner would often ask cast and crew members about funny things that had happened to them, then he would write whole episodes about these occurrences. As a result, a majority of the episodes over the course of the show's five season run were based on actual events that really occurred.

 

CBS canceled the show after season one temporarily, then renewed it. When the show finally did go off the air, it was because the cast and producers wanted to quit while they were still proud of it. Additional fact, Carl Reiner personally said at the very beginning, that the show would not run for more than five seasons.

 

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Uploaded on November 20, 2016