Every time I watch something like The Dick Van Dyke Show, I’m reminded of just how great T.V. shows used to be.
The Dick Van Dyke Show is an American television sitcom that initially aired on CBS from October 3, 1961 to June 1, 1966, with a total of 158 half-hour episodes spanning over five seasons.
The two main settings show the work and home life of Rob Petrie (Dick Van Dyke), the head writer of a comedy/variety show produced in Manhattan. Viewers are given an “inside look” at how a television show was written and produced. Other scenes focus on the home life of Rob, his wife Laura and son Richie.
Many of the show’s plots were inspired by Reiner’s experiences as a writer. He even attempted to create a series called “Head of the Family” where he played the main character. However, it didn’t work and he reworked it into The Dick Van Dyke Show.
CBS had intended to cancel the show after its first season, but Procter & Gamble threatened to pull its advertising from the network’s lucrative daytime lineup and the show was renewed, keeping its Wednesday night time slot.
After going into summer reruns, the show jumped into the top 10 by the third episode of its second season, helped by coming directly after the new #1 hit, The Beverly Hillbillies.
The clip from the 1963 Christmas episode is so delightful! You can really see the chemistry these two talented icons share.