Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The lodge: a staple in many sitcoms

Anyone who follows the show, Vic and Sade will know that Vic is not just a member of a lodge, he's wrapped up in it.  His lodge is like a religion to him.

Since the lodge is full of very stupid rituals and yet it's treated with such reverence, there is this comedy yin-yang that makes it almost impossible not to laugh along with Sade, who sees the lodge as a money pit and waste of time.

I've been thinking, "the lodge" shows up quite a bit on other old-time radio (as well as early television):

Amos 'n' Andy - We know that George Stevens is the "King Fish" because he is the head of the "Knights of the Mystic Sea" lodge.  I really don't remember hearing about anything much that goes on there, but we know the lodge is a large part of the show.

Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - Close listening will show that Ozzie is a member of an unspecified lodge.   It's rarely mentioned.

Fibber McGee and Molly - Fibber is an Elk and the lodge comes into play in 3 or 4 episodes.  He seems to take the lodge seriously but it doesn't seem to control Fibber's life.

Lum and Abner - Almost every male on the show (excluding Cedric) seems to be a member of the lodge.  The lodge name is never mentioned (or at least, I've never heard it in the many episodes I have listened to.)  For the most part, the lodge seems to be a place to borrow chairs from, more than anything else.  Squire Skimp is a big muckity-muck in the lodge.

Mel Blanc Show - Mel belonged to the lodge and greeted other members of the lodge with secret, silly stuff concerning, "ugga bugga boo" or something similar.  I haven't heard the show in a while but I seem to recall his prospective father-in-law was a lodge muckity-muck and Mel was always trying to impress him and work his way up in the lodge.  (By the way, I hate the show.)

As I mentioned earlier, early sitcom TV had it's share of lodge members.  On the Honeymooners, Ralph and Norton were devoted to the lodge.  Fred and Barney on the Flintstones (which was a knockoff of The Honeymooners) were also lodge devotees.  And I know there were others.

©Jimbo 2010/2011

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