Surprising Facts About Your Favorite Vintage TV Shows

Surprising Facts From “The Andy Griffith Show”

Andy Griffith Show
Via Wikipedia
  • Andy and Barney were first introduced as cousins, but that concept got scrapped by the end of Season 1.
  • Opie really didn’t throw that rock during the theme song; it was a crew member.
  • The well-loved whistled theme song is called “The Fishin’ Hole.”
  • Barney gave his middle name in some episodes as “Milton,” and on others as “Oliver.”
  • In addition to starring as Sheriff Andy Taylor, Andy Griffith won a Tony for his work on Broadway, and starred as the title character in the TV detective drama Matlock.
  • The police car on the show always looked new because the producers were given a new model whenever the nearby dealership got one.

Read more here!

Surprising Facts From “Bonanza”

Bonanza cast
Via Wikipedia
  • The actors all sang on a album called Christmas at the Ponderosa.
  • Pernell Roberts, the actor who played Adam, actually hated the show and left after 6 seasons.
  • Dan Blocker, who played the lovable Hoss, died while the show was still running and his loss was written into the script, the first time something like that had happened on TV.
  • With 14 seasons, Bonanza was the second-longest running TV Western, after Gunsmoke.
  • The characters never changed their costumes in order to allow the reuse of scenes anytime it was needed, and thus keep costs down.
  • A restaurant chain, going by the name of Ponderosa Steakhouse or Bonanza Steakhouse, was started by Dan Blocker.
  • This was the first TV show in history that was filmed and shown entirely in color.
  • Hoss’ real name was Eric.
  • Each of the 4 Cartwright men had equal screen time on every episode.
  • Chevrolet sponsored the show and in return, the actors appeared in commercials for them.
  • Michael Landon (Little Joe) was eager about writing and directing several episodes of Bonanza, and later went on to write, direct, and star in another beloved TV show, Little House on the Prairie.

Read more here! 

Surprising Facts From the “I Love Lucy” Show

I Love Lucy cast
Via Wikipedia
  • The actors who played Fred and Ethel were really 2 decades apart in age.
  • The Ricky Ricardo character was originally going to be named Larry Lopez.
  • This show was the first to be shot entirely in front of a live studio audience.
  • While Desi Arnaz (Ricky) had a really good memory and never messed up his lines, William Frawley (Fred) struggled terribly with remembering his lines.
  • While she was known for being a redhead, Lucy’s hair was dyed that color–it was actually brown.
  • The record for being on the most covers of TV Guide goes to Lucille Ball.
  • Lucy’s pregnancy with Little Ricky was real and written into the show, at a time when that was very rare for TV.
  • If one of the actors caused a moment that got the studio audience clapping when it wasn’t called for in the script, he or she got a silver dollar.
  • The TV rerun concept was invented by Desi Arnaz to give his wife time to rest after having their baby.
  • The show was watched by so many Americans that during its airtime, water and phone usage dropped significantly. The episode where Lucy has her baby got more viewers than President Eisenhower’s inauguration.

Read more here!

Did you enjoy these facts? Which ones surprised you? Tell us in the comments!


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