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Sales Resistance

Sales Resistance –I Love Lucy episode 45, season 2, originally aired 1/26/1953

The I Love Lucy episode Sales Resistance begins with Ricky at the piano singing “There’s a Brand New Baby at Our House” to Fred and Ethel Mertz — which he is recording, so he can take it to Lucy in the hospital. Where did the recorder come from? Lucy bought it from the lady in the next bed, leading to a flashback episode about Lucy’s lack of sales resistance, where Lucy bought a kitchen helper and is trying to hide it from Ricky, even throwing the package back and forth between Lucy and Ethel — but Ricky intercepts! It turns out that the “handy dandy kitchen helper” doesn’t work, and Ricky insists that Lucy return it, lecturing Lucy (and Ethel) about how women don’t have any sales resistance in the process …

Lucy is imagining how she should approach it, waiting for the representative of the Handy Dandy Kitchen Helper — who appears, and seems to be willing to take it back … only to “upsell” her the Handy Dandy vacuum cleaner for $8.95; a very funny bit. Of course, then there are the accessories … for only a little more …

Later, Ethel comes in, and sees the miserable Lucy — and all of the accessories, that cost her over $100 (in the 1950’s). Lucy hears Ricky singing as he comes home, and she and Ethel hide it in the hall closet. Lucy’s guilty conscience begins to eat away at her, and Ricky turns on a light switch — but the vacuum is still plugged in, and starts up whenever the switch is turned on, leading to Ricky finding the new vacuum cleaner. Ricky “puts his foot down” and insists that she return it.

Sales Resistance - Lucy tries to duplicate the Handy Dandy sales pitch - unsuccessfullyLucy is afraid to try and return it, for fear that she’ll buy even more junk. So, she decides to use the sales pitch on other people — but her first sales call is a failure, as she throws dirt on the woman’s floor, and offers her $10 if she can’t vacuum it up in 2 minutes — which she can’t, since the woman’s electricity has been turned off.

Later, a disheveled Lucy returns home, having failed to sell the vacuum cleaner. Ricky offers to take care of the problem, and Lucy and Ethel leave (in order to resist temptation). And when they come home, she sees their new “Handy Dandy refrigerator” — and even tightwad Fred has bought a new “Handy Dandy washing machine,” proving that none of them have sales resistance after all.

Sales Resistance is available as part of the season 2 I Love Lucy DVD collection.

Quotes from I Love Lucy – Sales Resistance

Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): How much did it cost?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): It saves the housewife time every day?
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): How much?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): About two hours.

Fred Mertz (William Frawley): [Fred walks in] What’s up?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): You’re just in time for a demonstration.
Fred Mertz (William Frawley): Of what?
Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): Women’s stupidity.
Fred Mertz (William Frawley): It shouldn’t take long.

Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): And now ladies and gentlemen, I’m about to demonstrate the Handy Dandy Kitchen Helper.  It’s something you shouldn’t be without.  It peels and spices, cuts and rices, skins and dices at lowest prices.

Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz): [having found the Handy Dandy vacuum cleaner] Lucy, what is this?
Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Oh, darn, you found your Christmas present.

Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball): Four more hours, and they would have reported the death of another salesman.

Trivia about I Love Lucy – Sales Resistance

  • This is the first of five flashback episodes that were filmed in August and September of 1952, and aired after the birth of Desi Arnaz, Jr. to give Lucille Ball time to recuperate.  In episodes 45 and 46 it was explained that Lucy was still in the hospital.
  • After the episode originally aired, an announcer mentioned that Desi Arnaz’s song, “There’s a Brand New Baby at Our House” was available on the Columbia record label, with the I Love Lucy theme song on the flip side.
  • Verna Felton, who plays Mrs. Simpsons, the housewife Lucy meets when going door to door trying to sell the vacuum cleaner, also appears as the maid in I Love Lucy: Lucy Hires a Maid (1953).


Tom Raymond has been a professional clown and children's entertain for nearly 20 years - in addition to his personal website Raynbow Clown he also runs several clown-related websites, including Famous Clowns and Free Clown Skits, Best Clean Funny Jokes

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