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Lucy Fakes Illness – I Love Lucy

Lucy Fakes Illness - I Love Lucy episode 16, originally aired 1/28/1952

Lucy Fakes an Illness - Lucy imitating Tallulah BankheadOnce again being told that she can’t be in the show, Lucy  Ricardo (Lucille Ball) decides to pretend that this final rejection has driven her to mental illness—she imitates becoming Tallulah Bankhead, and then reverting to childhood, including riding a tricycle around the apartment!

Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz) is about to let Lucy be in the show in order to help his “ailing” wife, until Fred Mertz (William Frawley) informs him that she is faking the entire thing.  Ricky decides that turnabout is fair play, and hires an actor friend to pretend to be a doctor, who diagnoses Lucy with a case of “the gobloots“—very rare, and touch and go; in fact, while Lucy falls asleep in her bed, Ricky puts a green light bulb in Lucy’s bedside lamp, to make her think that she’s turning green—the final stage of gobloots!  It’s one of these rare moments that makes you wish that this had been filmed in color.

Lucy Fakes Illness is available as part of the season 1 I Love Lucy DVD collection.

I Love Lucy Quotes

Ricky (Desi Arnaz) [to Lucy, fearing that she has amnesia]: Could it be possible that you’re suffering from magnesia?

Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball) [faking amnesia]: My mother told me never to talk to strange men… whoever she is.


Lucy (Lucille Ball) : I got this book at the library and it says anybody who is constantly frustrated may do all sorts of things.
Ethel (Vivian Vance): So?
Lucy (Lucille Ball): So Look.
Ethel (Vivian Vance) [reads book]: Abnormal Psychology.
Lucy (Lucille Ball): Yeah, I’m learning to act abnormal.
Ethel (Vivian Vance): For this you need a book?

I Love Lucy Trivia

  • This is the first time that Lucy utters “Ewwww”, a Lucy trademark that her scriptwriters referred to as “the spider look.”

Courtesy of Clown Ministry

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