Happy Days

Season 7 Episode 19

The Hucksters

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Feb 05, 1980 on ABC

Episode Recap

Richie, Marion, and Joanie wait for Howard before eating dinner. He arrives home but says that he has already eaten at the Fatty Burger. Howard was in Chicago and mentions Freddie Prebble whom he ran into at a convention. Freddie was a nitwit that worked for Howard six years ago and, now, owns a chain of hardware stores and is a millionaire. Freddie told Howard to advertise his business on television. Howard says he will use the camera that he gave Richie for his birthday to shoot some pictures. He will buy some time on Channel 8 and tells Richie that he can write the copy for the announcer to read. Everyone watches the commercial at Arnold's, and it receives a lukewarm response. The next morning (Saturday), the store is empty. Fonzie comes in. Howard has bought his own pick-a-number machine, and Fonzie's number is 3 (there were only two customers ahead of him that day). Richie says that he's figured out what their problem is - they don't know what the heck they're doing when it comes to advertising. He says he knows of an advertising man that lectured at his college. They all go to see him. Howard talks to Mr. Vanburen at the house. Howard says he would be happy with a 25% increase in business, but Vanburen guarantees him a 40% increase in two months in exchange for complete control of the commercial. Vanburen sees the four family members as being in the commercial, and Howard signs the contract. They later rehearse a commercial at the hardware store where the emphasis is friendliness. Mr. Vanburen envisions a younger son and sends Richie to wardrobe. Richie comes out wearing a beanie and shorts, but he isn't too happy about it. They bring in a kid named Billy to replace Richie. Joanie is then replaced by Scruffy, a dog. Howard is replaced by Bart, a younger-looking man. Howard is now Iggy, the stock boy. Marion is replaced by the young and blond Ingrid. Later on, the commercial is nearly ready to go on television live. Fonzie stops by to watch the filming. Henry Aaron makes a special guest appearance during the dress rehearsal. Fonzie says that Mr. Vanburen is lying about who the Cunninghams are and asks Howard if it is legal. Vanburen says it is not completely clean. Marion, Richie, and Joanie arrive. They shoot the commercial live, and Howard interrupts to reveal the truth and show his real family. Hank Aaron enters the shot and talks to Richie about the glove he signed for him. Fonzie then tells everyone to come to the store as the commercial concludes. Back at the house, after looking through some photo albums, Hank says goodbye to everyone.
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