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The Classic Sitcoms Guide to...
The Dick Van Dyke Show
Season Two: 1962-63


"HEAD OF THE FAMILY": 1960
SEASON ONE: 1961-62
SEASON TWO: 1962-63

SEASON THREE: 1963-64

SEASON FOUR: 1964-65

SEASON FIVE: 1965-66

CREDITS
EMMY AWARDS

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1962-63: THE SECOND SEASON

Year-End Rating: 27.1 (9th place)

Carl Reiner continues as producer and head writer in the show's second year, once again contributing most of the season's scripts, with a welcome assist from Sheldon Keller and Howard Merrill, who would continue to write for the show through the fourth season. John Rich returns as staff director, and John C. Chulay signs on as assistant director--a position he maintains for the remainder of the show's run.


31 Never Name a Duck    First Aired: September 26, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Stars: Jerry Hausner, Jane Dulo, Geraldine Wall, Frank Adamo
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Ritchie is grief-stricken by the death of his pet duck.


32 The Two Faces of Rob    First Aired: October 3, 1962
Writers: Sheldon Keller, Howard Merrill
Director:John Rich
Guest Star: Herbie Faye
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Posing as a mysterious stranger, Rob calls Laura and asks for a date--a prank that backfires when she accepts his invitation.


33 The Attempted Marriage    First Aired: October 10, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Stars: Sandy Kenyon, Ray Kellogg, Dabbs Greer

Rob recalls the disastrous circumstances that led to his beleaguered arrival at his own wedding--battered, bruised, and three hours late.

Carl Reiner fondly recalls the sequence where Rob shudders as he summons the courage to propose to Laura in an open Jeep. "That was my proposal! When I asked my wife to marry me, I got chills just like that." The producer took pride that most of the stories on the show sprang from events that had actually happened to him, or someone on the staff. "I would always ask writers," he explained, "'What happened to you today?' and not, 'What have you seen lately--and how can we change it around for a story?'"

Writer Bill Persky found that the search for storylines could become a comical obsession. In Look magazine, he recalled getting a flat tire on a deserted Mexican roadway. "I was scared to death, but I was thinking, how can I put this in the show?"


34 Bank Book 6565696    First Aired: October 17, 1962
Writers: Ray Allen Saffian, Harvey Bullock
Director: John Rich

Rob's imagination runs rampant when he discovers a sizable sum of cash stowed away in Laura's secret bank account.


35 Hustling the Hustler    First Aired: October 24, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Star: Phil Leeds

Buddy worries that his incorrigible brother plans to fleece Rob when the supposedly reformed gambler challenges the head writer to a friendly game of pool.


36 My Husband Is Not a Drunk    First Aired: October 31, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director:Al Rafkin
Guest Stars: Charles Aidman, Roy Roberts

Rob suffers from a post-hypnotic suggestion that forces him to act hopelessly inebriated every time he hears a bell ring.


37 What's in a Middle Name?    First Aired: November 7, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Stars: Carl Benton Reid, Geraldine Wall, Cyril Delevanti, J. Pat O'Malley, Isabel Randolph

Rob tells Ritchie how he was given the middle name Rosebud in order to settle a feud that raged among his grandparents before he was born.


38 Like a Sister    First Aired: November 14, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: Hal Cooper
Guest Star: Vic Damone

Rob is concerned that Sally may be developing romantic illusions about Ric Vallone, the handsome singer who's been flirting with her all week.


39 The Night the Roof Fell In    First Aired: November 21, 1962
Writer: John Whedon
Director: Hal Cooper
Guest Star: Peter Oliphant

Rob and Laura recount vastly different versions of a spat that sent Rob storming out of the house.


40 The Secret Life of Buddy and Sally    First Aired: November 28, 1962
Writer: Lee Erwin
Director: Coby Ruskin
Guest Star: Phil Arnold

Rob suspects foul play when Buddy and Sally mysteriously disappear together every weekend.


41 A Bird in the Head Hurts    First Aired: December 5, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Star: Cliff Norton

Rob and Laura worry that Ritchie may be suffering from an overactive imagination when he complains that he's been attacked by a giant woodpecker.


42 Gesundheit, Darling    First Aired: December 12, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Star: Sandy Kenyon

A sudden fit of uncontrollable sneezing has Rob worried that he's developed an allergic reaction to Laura.


43 A Man's Teeth Are Not His Own    First Aired: December 19, 1962
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich

Rob is afraid that Jerry will never forgive him after he lets another dentist perform emergency work on his teeth.


44 Somebody Has to Play Cleopatra    First Aired: December 26, 1962
Writer: Martin A. Ragaway
Director: John Rich
Guest Stars: Valerie Yerke, Eleanor Audley, Bob Crane, Shirley Mitchell

Rob has his hands full directing the latest neighborhood variety show; none of the husbands are too keen on letting their wife play Cleopatra.

Guest star Bob Crane would move on to a regular spot on The Donna Reed Show before he assumed the lead role in CBS's long-running wartime sitcom Hogan's Heroes.


45 The Cat Burglar    First Aired: January 2, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Stars: Barney Phillips, Johnny Silver

Rob and Laura are unable to unravel the mystery of how a cat burglar stole their living-room set without leaving any clues.


46 The Foul-Weather Girl    First Aired: January 9, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Star: Joan O'Brien

The TV weather girl from Rob's hometown asks him to help her land a role on The Alan Brady Show--a proposition that Laura eyes with suspicion.

Rob responds to Laura's jealousy by accusing her of sounding "exactly like one of those wives in a situation comedy." That such a comment could be delivered without self-consciousness offers a clue to the show's growing sophistication. The world of the Petries had become so real that we could easily envision Rob and Laura sitting through annoying half-hour comedies, just as we did.


47 Will You Two Be My Wife?    First Aired: January 16, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: John Rich
Guest Stars: Barbara Bain, Ray Kellogg, Allan Melvin

Rob faces the fury of a woman scorned in a flashback that recounts how he lowered the boom on his hometown sweetheart after his engagement to Laura.


48 Ray Murdock's X-Ray    First Aired: January 23, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: Jerry Paris
Guest Stars: Gene Lyons, Jerry Hausner
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Laura feels betrayed when Rob tells a TV interviewer how she inspired most of the outlandish domestic situations featured on The Alan Brady Show.

Jerry Paris began his long tenure as the primary director of The Dick Van Dyke Show with this episode. John Rich recalls how he came to appoint the actor as his successor when he left the series to direct feature films. "Carl and Sheldon were worried about what would happen to the show," he remembers. "But it was already firmly on the tracks. The cast and the writing were so solid, I told them, that anyone could direct the show--I looked around, and Jerry happened to be standing there--even him. Actually, Jerry turned out to be a fine director. He did an excellent job."

The show's creator recalls a different account of how the talented director found his calling. According to Carl Reiner, Paris had been anxious to direct from the very start. "But he was such a fidgety guy, no one thought he'd be very good as a director. After John left, we finally gave Jerry a chance, and he did better than anyone dreamed. He finally surprised us all."


49 I Was a Teenage Head Writer    First Aired: January 30, 1963
Writers: Sheldon Keller, Howard Merrill
Director: Jerry Paris

When Buddy and Sally refuse to join Rob in an impulsive walkout, he recalls his tempestuous early days as a writer on The Alan Brady Show.


50 It May Look Like a Walnut!    First Aired: February 6, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director:Jerry Paris
Guest Star: Danny Thomas
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A late-show thriller gives Rob a nightmare about a world-domination plot cooked up by an alien who looks exactly like Danny Thomas.


51 My Husband Is a Check-Grabber    First Aired: February 13, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: Al Rafkin
Guest Stars: Phil Arnold, Bill Idelson, Joan Shawlee
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The Petries' latest skirmish springs from Rob's annoying habit of always picking up the check when they're out with friends.

Laura gives Rob the silent treatment on the ride home from the restaurant as he tries to figure out just what he did that got her so riled. "Well," she finally volunteers, "I think it's pretty terrible not to be able to send our son to college." And from that marvelous leap in logic, the quarrel escalates in a funny, dizzying spiral, and we laugh as we recognize how in comedy--as well as in marriage--what isn't said often reveals more than what is.


52 Don't Trip Over That Mountain    First Aired: February 20, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: Coby Ruskin
Guest Stars: Jean Allison, Ray Kellogg

Fearing disaster, Laura warns Rob not to go on a weekend ski trip and then blames herself for the inevitable accident.


53 Give Me Your Walls!    First Aired: February 27, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: Jerry Paris
Guest Star: Vito Scotti

Laura hires a flamboyant artist to paint the living-room walls but has second thoughts when the ingratiating con man takes over the entire household.


54 The Sam Pomerantz Scandals    First Aired: March 6, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: Claudio Guzman
Guest Stars: Henry Calvin, Len Weinrib, Joan Shawlee

Rob convinces Laura and the gang to stage a variety show at an old pal's Catskills resort.

Rob and his old Army pal revive their old Laurel and Hardy routine in what amounts to Dick Van Dyke's own heartfelt homage to the movie comedy team. The star frequently acknowledged Stan Laurel's influence on his work, especially the screen comedian's talent for "taking one simple prop and doing fifteen minutes with it"--a gift that would also prove to be Van Dyke's forte in the many extended solo bits that would appear in later episodes.


55 The Square Triangle    First Aired: March 20, 1963
Writer: Bill Idelson
Director: Jerry Paris
Guest Star: Jacques Bergerac

Buddy and Sally are puzzled when Rob vanishes every time the show's handsome French guest star walks in.

Writer Bill Idelson appeared in a handful of episodes as Sally's forlorn boyfriend, Herman Glimscher. He continued to forge a distinguished career as a comedy writer and eventually produced much of the first year of MTM's The Bob Newhart Show.


56 I'm No Henry Walden!    First Aired: March 27, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Story By: Ray Brenner, Jack Guss
Director: Jerry Paris
Guest Stars: Everett Sloane, Doris Packer, Roxanne Berard, Betty Lou Gerson, Frank Adamo, Howard Wendell, Carl Reiner

Rob feels self-conscious when he discovers that he's the only comedy writer at a literary gathering.

Carl Reiner does a lively bit as Yale Sampson, an English philosopher prone to double-talk. The canny producer supplied himself with ample opportunities to chew scenery, even after he assumed the on camera role of Alan Brady in the show's third year.


57 Racy Tracy Rattigan    First Aired: April 3, 1963
Writers: Ronald Alexander, Carl Reiner
Director:Sheldon Leonard
Guest Star: Richard Dawson

Alan Brady's summer replacement is Tracy Rattigan, a lecherous flirt who tests Rob's patience when he zeroes in on Laura.

Richard Dawson later discovered enormous popularity as a game-show host, though not before he would log scores of sitcom appearances--including regular roles on Hogan's Heroes and in the final incarnation of The New Dick Van Dyke Show in the early seventies.


58 Divorce    First Aired: April 10, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director: Jerry Paris
Guest Stars: Joan Shawlee, Charles Cantor, Marian Collier

Rob plays amateur marriage counselor when Buddy threatens to divorce Pickles over a silly misunderstanding.


59 It's a Shame She Married Me    First Aired: April 17, 1963
Writers: Sheldon Keller, Howard Merrill
Director: James Niver
Guest Star: Robert Vaughn

Rob makes a fool of himself by attempting to outdo Laura's old boyfriend, a suave and wealthy industrialist.


60 A Surprise Surprise Is a Surprise    First Aired: April 24, 1963
Writer: Carl Reiner
Director:Jerry Paris

Rob tries to second-guess Laura's plan to surprise him on his birthday.


61 Jilting the Jilter    First Aired: May 1, 1963
Writer: Ronald Alexander
Director: Jerry Paris
Guest Star: Guy Marks

Sally's latest heartthrob is a stand-up comic who's badly in need of a new writer, which is exactly what Rob and Buddy suspect he's after.


62 When a Bowling Pin Talks, Listen    First Aired: May 8, 1963
Writer: Martin A. Ragaway
Director: Jerry Paris
Guest Stars: Jon Silo, Herbie Faye, Carl Reiner

Ritchie helps his dad overcome a bout with writer's block when the boy inadvertently causes Rob to plagiarize a sketch idea from a TV kid's show.

 

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