1 9 4 9 – 1 9 5 0 (USA)
17 x 30 minute episodes
Debuting in December 1949, this early weekly comedy series from ABC starred (then little-known) Jack Lemmon as Harold, a young out-of-work actor from the country who got a job as the valet of crotchety and pompous drama critic Franklin Westbrook (Neil Hamilton, who went on to play Commissioner Gordon in the Batman series).
Harold was constantly gunning (unsuccessfully) for a job in the theatre, but his amiable, well-meaning bumbling invariably placed his boss into the most embarrassing situations possible each week.
Cynthia Stone (whom Lemmon later married) co-starred as Harold’s girlfriend. Bernard Green’s orchestra was also featured.
The half-hour series was broadcast live and produced by Charles Irving, and directed by Babette Henry.
In April 1950, after 17 weeks on the air, ABC decided situation comedy didn’t really work on television. A year later, along came I Love Lucy, and everybody changed their mind . . .