I Love Lucy

Season 4 Episode 17

L.A. at Last!

Aired Monday 9:00 PM Feb 07, 1955 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
73 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Lucy arrives in Hollywood with stars in her eyes. She heads for The Brown Derby, a celebrity hangout, where she encounters Eve Arden and William Holden -- and inadvertently presents Holden with a custard pie in the face. Hollywood legends William Holden and Eve Arden guest-star as themselves.moreless

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  • Hilarity reigns with William Holden in the Brown Derby.

    This has to be one of my top most favorite ILL episodes. No matter how many times I watch the scene in the Brown Derby with William Holden, I am on the flooring laughing my head off. It never gets old how he turns the tables on Lucy, the proverbial star-struck fan, and gawks at her in return. When Holden props himself up on the partition separating the two booths, then Lucy blindly does the same, coming near nose-to-nose with him is so awesomely priceless. His winking and then the pie incident just adds to the already immense enjoyment. Kudos to Mr. Holden, he didn't flinch a bit as that pie went all over him.

    The later formal meeting between Lucy and William Holden that Ricky arranges is a gem also. Not until reading it upon this site I didn't know that her fake nose was supposed to catch fire, as it had been long-rumored said to have been an accident. Though instead the improv was how she extinguished the flame, dipping her nose in her cup. Though this scene is a stellar one, and humorous as well, the one in the Brown Derby will forever remain the best for me.

    Also in the Brown Derby, they got to run into Eve Arden as well. Though sweet, I thought the bit happened too fast and convenient. With all the caricature pictures on the wall, Lucy and Ethel suddenly wanted to know the name to a certain picture, and it so happened to be Miss Arden's, and boom, there she was in the next booth. But the encounter and their shock of seeing her was really good.moreless
  • Finally, the gang arrives in Hollywood. Ricky needed at the studio. While Lucy, Ethel & Fred go to the 'famed' Brown Derby Restaurant, for lunch. They meet is Eve Arden, and then William Holden...who is sitting in the next booth. Then there's chaos!moreless

    By far, this is my absolute all-time favorite episode! I never get tired of watching it. Sometimes, start laughing well before, each scene because, I know the look on Lucy face or the line she says, is going to be hysterical! My favorite scene of course, is Lucy wearing the glasses, babushka, and her 'nose'! A definite classic!!
  • The Ricardos and Mertzes are in LA at last. Ricky has studio business at MGM, but Lucy and the Mertzes go star gazing at the Brown Derby. Trouble for William Holden when he takes the booth adjacent to Lucy and trouble for Lucy is forced to meet him.moreless

    Absolute perfection from start to finish. A superb glimpse of 1950s Hollywood and the cast at their very best. It is interesting to note that because the audience was convulsed with laughter, a scene was cut from the original script. The audience was supposed to see Lucy don various disguises -- an Audrey Hepburn wig, i.e. -- but for time constraints, the scene was cut. Just as well -- Lucy emerging with her hair up and her putty nose was perfect. I always marvel at Ricky\'s response. Funny today as it was in 1955, this is my absolute favorite episode of the series.moreless
  • While dining at the Brown Derby with the Mertzes, Lucy runs into William Holden. Chaos ensues as Holden decides to turn the tables on his gawking fans. This is the classic episode in which Lucy lights her fake putty nose on fire.moreless

    The Ricardos and Mertzes finally arrive in Hollywood where Lucy immediately decides to go hunting for movie stars. The gang (minus Ricky who is at the studio) heads over to The Brown Derby where they run into William Holden. Hilarity ensues as Holden decides to turn the tables on his gawking fans. Lucy had difficulty trying to swallow a mouthful of spaghetti as Holden relentlessly stared at her. Accidentaly tripping a waiter as she leaves, Lucy spills pie all over the unsuspecting movie star. Holden then meets up with Ricky at the studio. Ricky unknowingly mentions that his wife desperately wants to meet a movie star and Holden agrees to stop by the hotel and say hello. However, once Lucy realizes that Ricky brought William Holden home with him, Lucy desperately tries to disguise herself leading to even more classic comedic moments.

    This is by far the best episode of this already superb series. The two hilarious climaxes not only showcase Lucy's comedic genius, but the flawless writing of Madelyn Pugh and Bob Carroll Jr. Lucy is totally believable in this rather unbelievable show. Viewers feel sympathy and embarrassment as she tries to eat while Bill Holden stares at her, and as she desperately tries to conceal her identity in the hotel room. Her timing and facial expressions are priceless. Lucille Ball was a brilliant actress and this episode showcases her amazing talents.moreless
Bob Jellison

Bob Jellison

Bobby the Bellboy

Guest Star

Harry Bartell

Harry Bartell

The Headwaiter

Guest Star

William Holden

William Holden


Guest Star

Featured Episode Clip

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (4)

    • On May 17, 2015 CBS aired a special program titled "The I Love Lucy Superstar Special".  The special was two colorized episodes aired consecutively.  The first was this episode.  The second was the popular season six episode "Lucy and Superman" which featured a guest appearance by the late George Reeves as The Man of Steel.

    • The hotel front that was used for The Beverly Palms still exists. It is the Avalon Beverly Hills on Canon and Olympic in Beverly Hills. The front looks a little different but the rest is the same (on the outside!)

      The view from their room is a shot of downtown LA from the roof of the Hollywood Desilu Studios.

    • Half the camera man is in view when Lucy trips the waiter in the Brown Derby. In the remastered version of this episode, the cameraman was chopped out, but in the original, the cameraman stayed in the view.

    • Contrary to popular rumor Lucy's nose was supposed to catch on fire. There was a tiny candle wick under the clay. What was improvised was how she extinguished the fake nose. In the original script Lucy was supposed to take her fake nose off and dunk it in her cup of coffee, instead she dunks her nose into the coffee cup while it is still attached to her face.

  • QUOTES (4)

  • NOTES (4)

    • Jess Oppenheimer, Madelyn Davis, Bob Carroll Jr., Bob Schiller and Bob Weiskopf were nominated for the 1956 Emmy Award for "Best Comedy Writing" for this episode.

    • In this first "Hollywood" episode, Ricky calls M.G.M. asking the operator for a "Hollywood" exchange. Later, in episode 126, Lucy calls M.G.M. asking the operator for a "Texas" exchange.

    • William Holden and Lucille Ball starred in the 1949 film "Miss Grant Takes Richmond".

    • William Holden mentions his latest film "The Country Girl" which co-stars Bing Crosby and Grace Kelly.