Home Television Comedy I’m Dickens, He’s Fenster

I’m Dickens, He’s Fenster

1 9 6 4 (USA)
32 x 25 minute episodes

This slapstick comedy about two Los Angeles carpenters-cum-builders named Harry Dickens and Arch Fenster who had a penchant for trouble starred John Astin (The Addams Family) and Marty Ingels in the title roles

Arch Fenster was a single playboy who was very irresponsible (his little black book ran to several volumes and was legendary) and Harry Dickens – who was married and definitely soberer than Fenster – was always having to get the two of them out of trouble.

The two were the best of friends and had both started working for their even-tempered balding boss, Mr Myron Bannister (former bandleader Frank DeVol), on the very same day nine years back.


Harry was 33 years old and his home was always a work in progress with splotches of mismatched paint on the walls and cabinet doors which never opened and shut properly.

He was somewhat pushy, sometimes overbearing, he gave bad advice, and he was rather insecure and subject to fits of jealousy – especially concerning his friendship with Fenster and his marriage to Kate (Emmaline Henry).

Kate was of Scottish descent and was an extremely patient soul, considering all of the madcap goings-on.

Chief among Harry and Arch’s pals at work were Mel Warshaw (Dave Ketchum), a devoted family man who worked to support his eleven kids, and henpecked Bob Mulligan (Henry Beckman), whose conversation often revolved around his relationship with his wife Eloise.

This intermittently amusing series came across like Abbott and Costello re-warmed for the 1960s. Episodes were filmed before a live studio audience. Sponsors included Crest Toothpaste, Tide, Crest, and El Producto Cigars.

Future celebrities who made guest appearances include Ellen Burstyn, Jim Nabors, Harvey Korman, Sally Kellerman, Peter Lupus, and Yvonne Craig.

Harry Dickens
John Astin
Arch Fenster
Marty Ingels
Kate Dickens
Emmaline Henry
Mel Warshaw
Dave Ketchum
Myron Bannister
Frank DeVol
Bob Mulligan
Henry Beckman