The show takes place in the 50s a very innocent era. As innocent as it was there was the Beaver. His real name is Theodore Cleaver, Beaver is just his nick name. A young boy who always got into trouble, with help from his big brother Wally he knows just what to do. A very good show with morals.
Thanks to TV Land I was fortunate to come across this TV Classic. Most shows of its time that I have watched did not bring much appeal to me, and when I decided to watch this for the first time I expected it to give the same result. However it surprised me and I ended up finding it entertaining and interesting. It may be in the past, but I think that it is one of those classics that still has something to give to newer generations and that can be shared easily as a family. I believe that younger audiences would have no trouble coming to like Beaver and enjoying the many predicaments he gets himself into. Those who are a bit older can share a laugh at Eddie's schemes or Wally's personality. There are also a lot of other characters that can be fun to meet. Every episode delivers new excitement and usually something to laugh at. The Clevers are a great TV family and I think that almost anyone can come to enjoy the show if they give it a chance.
"Leave It to Beaver" (1957-1963) is a family show set in the suburban town of Mayfield that focuses on the Cleaver family: Ward (Hugh Beaumont), father and accountant; June (Barbara Billingsley), wife and stay-at-home Mom; and their two boys, Wally (Tony Dow) a teenager, and their youngest, Theodore, better known to everyone as "Beaver" (Jerry Mathers). While television of the 1950s and '60s had its share of family shows during its black and white age, including "Father Knows Best" with Robert Young and Jane Wyatt; "The Donna Reed Show" (with Donna Reed and Carl Betz); "Dennis the Menace" (starring Jay North); and later, the long running series, "My Three Sons" (1960-1972) with Fred MacMurray, it seemed unlikely that "Leave It to Beaver" would become the one sit-com to survive and continue to air on television, whether locally or on cable, almost forty years after its final first run episode in 1963. The aforementioned family comedy shows had its share of reruns over the years before slowly disappearing into Limbo, replaced by newer programs to its Color-oriented viewers, but this innocent black and white show which was done on film and not on video tape (thank goodness), and to date never colorized to attract younger viewers, it still entertains as is. "Leave It to Beaver" geared to its younger viewers when first aired, but today, the children who loved it back then are either adults or grandparents currently sharing their TV memories with their young ones. And the tradition continues.
Like most long-running shows, and this one lasted six seasons, the earlier episodes are obviously the best, mixing comedy, charm and well written dialogue. It's obvious that the writer or writers who developed this program had fond memories of what it's like being a child, for that many of the show's characters, mainly children, could easily be identfied with someone we at one time had know in our youth, one character in particular being Judy Henson, the school's poney tailed tattle-tale, teacher's pet and know-it-all, just to name a few.
Beaver's closest friend during the first couple of seasons was the chubby Larry Mondello, while Wally's pals were Chester, Tooey and the conniving Eddie Haskell. Over the years, characters have come and gone, but the writers managed to find new friends for Beaver while they kept and expanded the Eddie Haskell character, played to perfection by Ken Osmond, one of the most memorable and "smooth" characters ever to be created and developed. Along the way, Chester and Tooey were just written out, and a new character, Clarence "Lumpy" Rutherford (Frank Bank) stepped in. At first, Lumpy was the neighborhood bully who hounded Wally and the Beav, but eventually became one of Wally's closest friends. With each passing season viewers got to see the show's new opening, watching the boys growing and maturing to young adults by season six. During the final season, the instrumental theme song remained the same, but the score was jazzed up a bit to move up with the rock-and-roll music era and breaking away from the wholesome 1950s. By the final season (1962-63), Beaver, the central titled character who was by now 14, has lost his innocent and boyish charm, becoming less interesting. With the writers sensing this, the scripts would place Beaver in the background in several episodes while stories would focus more around Wally and his friends. There were even segments in which either Lumpy or Eddie would have almost the entire half hour, but when Beaver had some storylines all to himself, it lacked something, becoming mediocre episodes. By mid season, Beaver would start becoming more interested in girls, but after 235 episodes, the Cleaver family went into retirement.
The amazing thing about this program is the development of its characters, not only the central characters but the supporting crew. Aside from Ken Osmond's ever so polite Eddie, who is well mannered in front of the adults and a "big mouth, wise guy" in front of all the others, there is Richard Deacon as Fred Rutherford, Lumpy's father; the charming Sue Randall as Miss Landers, Beaver's teacher; Burt Mustin as Gus, the fireman; Beaver's other friends including Stanley Fafara as Whitey Whitney, who appeared occasionally through the show's six seasons; Stephen Talbot as Gilbert, and Richard Correll as Richard Rickover. The show might have its share of contradiction, there was a Violet Rutherford, Fred's daughter and Lumpy's sister, who would disappear, making it appear that Lumpy is Fred's only "offspring," in spite of he talking about his other two sons in some earlier shows, characters which never materialized on the show; and Gilbert Bates being the only child living with his widowed father, suddenly having a mother and sister in later shows, and so on.
Aside this being a comedy show, "Leave It to Beaver" does take time out for some tender moments. In almost every episode, after either Wally or the Beav, or both, get tangled up with problems, whether it be their fault or not, there is usually a good father to son(s) lecture, along with the moral lesson to what's occurred. One in particular line recited by Ward (Hugh Beaumont) to his wife, June, that stands out is, "The way to get your children's love is to first earn their respect." Occasionally mother June would have her moment of truth with her boys as well, giving them the lesson, value and facts of life, something currently missing in today's TV family sit-coms. And even when the parents are in the wrong, this is one of those rare cases in which the TV Dad or Mom will come out and admit it, showing its viewers that even the parents aren't perfect, but they do what's best for their children as well as learning from their own mistakes.
The show even has episode favorites, such as a classic moment in which Beaver gets himself trapped in a billboard soup bowl, which to many is classic Beaver. Although dated and corny to some, "Leave It to Beaver" is harmless fun, good family viewing. There was even a 1983 reunion show, "Still the Beaver," along with a new up-to-date series, "The New Leave It to Beaver" (1985-1989). While it's good seeing those familiar faces again, a little older and slightly wiser, but minus the deceased Hugh Beaumont, who is sorely missed, nothing comes close to this original series.
While understanding that this show came at a time when TV couldn't push the envelope, this show literally makes me want to barf up my intestines whenever I flip by the channel when it's on. The show is so sweet, and gooey, no real-life family is like this. It is a complete, complete, complete, waste of time. And how the show lasted 6 years is beyond me!!!
This series remains one of the best television shows ever made. It has competent plot, acting, great stories with good morals without getting preachy, and lovable characters. It\'s my all-time favorite show.
Leave It To Beaver is one of the best television shows ever made. It has all the important and successful elements in the formula. It has great stories that are simple, humor that is clean yet not sappy, a message in each of the episodes, and it reflects life in that period, where innocence and kindness seemed to be more important. The characters were believable and the actors did a convincing job in every episode. One standout aspect of the show was that it tried to get a good message out to the audience. It showed the action from the point of view of the children even though the parents of this family show clearly held the reins. It was perhaps reflective of a time when parents still had a respect from their children. It\'s too bad such things aren\'t promoted in today\'s media. It\'s one thing to reflect the times, it\'s another to direct an important message to the viewer. Life might not have been exactly the same as it was on Leave It To Beaver, but at least the creators of the show wanted to pick out the best aspects of life in that period of the 1950s and 1960s and deliver important ideas of respect, kindness, moral fiber, and honesty. Those were the watchwords of the writers. The scripts were very good, a lot of fun, and enjoyable to such a degree that one never tires of seeing them over and over again. I think that the quality of Leave It To Beaver makes it a classic that will live on forever.
Truly, there are two LITBs ~ and I'm a huge fan of the first "incarnation". Aside from one obvious answer -- namely, Jerry Mathers growing up into a rather awkward adolescence --, I've always wondered what were the reasons for the DRAMATIC shift in tone, look, and -- IMHO -- quality of "Leave It To Beaver". And it can be absolutely marked as to when this happens: when the Cleavers move into the second house. In "First House" incarnation, everything is different. Ward is a handsome, even dashing figure. A relaxed, happy man with a good life. And the boys obviously adore him. June -- what a looker! Her style is the classic, mid-50s Grace Kelly look, and the sweet thing is that she carries it off beautifully. She's witty, graceful, and very much in love -- and in lust -- with her husband. That's one of the first MAJOR things that goes out the window when the Cleavers move into that new airplane hanger of a house -- the sexy, fun, adoring relationship between June and Ward. (At its best, worthy of comparison to the screwball comedy couples of the 1930s.) Why in the world did they get rid of this? Why did they change Ward from a stylish man-about-town into a cranky, always worried, humorless stiff? And what they did to June was worse! Everything she wore in the first house was beautiful, especially her hairstyle. After that, she became this dull, washed-out mannequin. With the worse hair possible from that time. (Yes, I know that the hairstyles of the early 1960s could be ridiculous, but not always. Look at Jacqueline Kennedy as one very stylish example.) And the boys. Yesterday, TV Land showed one of the sweetest shows in the history of TV: "The Bank Account". Here were two boys who were in love with life, always thinking about what was the right thing to do(and often failing). Caring more about others then themselves. "The Bank Account" is a perfect example of this. But then the family moves -- and the boys become different. Often nasty, selfish, looking at their parents as these old fogies who don't understand anything about fun and life(and considering what they turned June and Ward into, I guess the boys were on to something). Wally becomes this obnoxious Big Man on Campus. Beaver becomes this Big Man On Campus-wannabe. And their friends!! Couldn't the boys have at least one friend who wasn't a butthead? Eddie, Lumpy, Larry, Whitey, Richard, Gilbert. Holy-moly! What happened to the very cool Chester? Or the adorable Chuey? Or the incredibly cute Benji? Who were the producers of the show trying to appeal to, once the show became a hit? I really would like to know the answer to that, because once they decided to base the show on a "kids are more fun and smarter than their parents" theme, the show really went downhill. Just take the show's look. The first two years, the show glistens with an almost Fassbinderian white glow. Just look at the way the characters are photographed in that first house! Gorgeous. Then they move -- and everything seems as if it had been shot in someone's garage. The same is true of the music. There's that lovely, sad melody they use in the first two years -- then after they move, it's gone. So as a big fan of what this show was in its first incarnation, I've always wanted to know what caused the very big change in tone and quality. Answer: LITB changed networks. They went from CBS to ABC, and the Shark swallowed LITB whole.
Currently I have not found Leave it to Beaver, on dvd. You can however catch it on the Tube on weekdays. I know I do everyday a three and three thirty. It is wholesome and often very refreshing change to daily life on how life use to be not so long ago. It is a chance to experience a new beginning and hope in family life.
Whenever I pass the show on television the very sight of these disgusting characters makes me wish my head would explode, or my intestines would come up. These characters need to get a life, or be steam ironed to death. The show is just so unorginal, ever show in the 50s and 60s was like this, and for some reason they lasted. Whoever watched it or watches it, desperately needs to get a life, and fast. Who agrees?
Leave It to Beaver is a classic show that still manages to hold up well today some 40 years after it went off the air. It was one of the few shows of its kind that was told from the point of view of the child. If you realize this it might help you to understand and appreciate the show more. The world we see in Leave It to Beaver is shown through the eyes of Beaver, Wally, and the other youths not the adults.
The acting was always pretty good and while some of the scripts were lame most were funny and tasteful. The actors themselves, while not Academy Award winning calibre, managed to create memorable characters who have stood the test of time. Tony Dow and Jerry Mathers were two of the best child actors from that era and Hugh Beaumont and Barbara Billingsley remain the standard TV sitcom mother and father. Special mention must be made of Ken Osmond who portrayed Eddie Haskell. Osmond stole nearly every episode in which he appeared as the conniving Eddie.
Many throughout the years have criticized Leave It to Beaver for providing a false and unrealistic picture of domestic family life. Maybe it did but I'd much rather sit through a half hour with the Cleavers than a half hour with the loutish Connor family from Roseanne. Or the ludicrous Tanners from Full House.
Im 20 and I watch reruns of Leave it to Beaver. In my opinion Season 2 is the best season out of the 6 seasons. Seasons 1,3, 4 and 5 are great also.The worst is season 6. The producers seemed to be getting lazy by that time. They focused on Wally who is possibly the most boring character in the show.Beaver was just put aside or was in the background most of the time and was starting to get boring.When Jerry Mathers was younger the show did the right thing to focus the episodes on him and not Wally.Thats why I cant give the show a perfect 10.
That is what I was once told by a self proclaimed preacher. I repsonded that "all of us do when we are young!" That is where the moral of the story came into play. I always loved to watch this show after school. Everyday.
I wish the afternoons for kids could be the same today as it was when Beaver was on TV!
I've been watching this show with my mother for a while now and so far I've seen atleast every episode twice (some at least 10 times). I really love this show because it teaches morals. The Beaver always gets into trouble for the plot so the situation arises for both the viewing child and parent to learn a lesson in the real world.
I barely remember the show when it originally aired in the late fifties and early sixties. In the reruns I re-discovered a way to go back to a more peaceful time, although it was through a television screen, and was really a fantasy world. I do remember the murders of King and the Kennedy\\\'s. The civil rights movement, the Vietnam War, etc. \\\"Leave it to Beaver\\\" was what we wanted it to be, a place and family that was ideal. No sex offenders, gangs, car hijackings, or other crimes. As a police officer I find it really cathartic to watch a fantasy world for half an hour. I wish more \\\"real\\\" people would see the moral at the end of the show, usually handed out by Ward Cleaver.
Leave It to Beaver may have aired in the 1950's, before I was born, but I really enjoy watching the repeats on Tv Land. One of the things that I really enjoy about the show is seeing what kind of trouble the Beaver gets into (usually thanks to listening to the bad advice from friends) and what he says to try and get out of a punishment resulting in it. I also got a kick out of what a little con artist Eddie Haskell was and how he would always act like a little angel whenever Ward or June came into the room whenever he would be talking to Wally. In all, this is one classic show that is still enjoyable to watch after all the years that the show has been off the air.
yes i know wally and the beaver would not last longer than the first commercial today, however a classic is a classic and will be around forever.
things that happened then dont happen today, always fun to kick back and see the misadventures of the cleaver family. I am sure everyone had an eddie haskel in their life at one time or another.Sadly the innocence of that time is gone forever, may it last on reruns for generations to come
I was so glad to watch this program as a kid (in syndication) back in the 70s. I've introduced it to my daughter now in the 00s. Almost 50 years and the years haven't aged this program. It's clean and sanitized, but the problems of youth and family are still there.
There's no replacement for Ward Cleaver, who tries to keep his kids walking the straight and narrow, as they find themselves tempted by the likes of Eddie, Lumpy, Larry, Whitey, and all the other kids. I use the problem and solution as teaching tools for my daughter.
Although it can't compete with modern problems, it deals with base issues (communication, empathy) that could create a foundation.
And the comedy helps hide the fact that kids are learning about how to deal with problems.
Leave It to Beaver is 2nd best only to Andy Griffith in the world of classic old television sitcoms. I just love the old fashionedness of it. Sometimes I laugh just because of the names people give each other that we don't use too often anymore(creep is a good example). I like all the characters from the accident prone "beaver" to the sly and conniving Eddy Hascal. Even though beaver lost his cuteness to his mistakes as he approached his teenage years, the show is still a favorite of mine when I watch it because I'm always able to find that charm of innocence in him. The show is just plain funny!
A classic of classics family sit com. Who can forget the opening? Leave It to Beaver starring Hugh Beaumont ... Barbara Billingsley ... Tony Dow ... and Jerry Mathers as .. The Beaver. The mom and dad's names were of course, Ward and June and the older brother was Wally. lots of good stories and lesson to be learned for all. they tried to bring this back with the brothers as adults and it didn't work. In my opinion the reason it didnt work was poor writing. With better writers this show could have been teaching lessons and entertaining today's yought for years to come.
I watched reruns of Leave it to Beaver and I was hooked. Then, suddenly they stopped showing reruns and I was sort of upset. this show was an extreme classic and always will be, and now I must depart by saying... It's a small world after all, It's a small world after all, it's not a big world, it's a small world, cause it's a small world now.
Leave It to Beaver is a television situation comedy (CBS, October 4, 1957 to 1958; ABC, 1958-June 20, 1963) that became more popular in syndicated reruns than it already was in first-run production, as well as becoming a pop culture icon referencing idealized, even homogenized suburban American life as the 1950s crossed to the 1960s.
This is not one of my favorite shows; yet, I can't find any reason to really hate it. To me, the show has a wonderful sense of nostalgia in the screwy sense of relationship between parents and children in the 1950s. Case in point, why does Beaver and Wally always think their parents are going to kill them? They have no basis behind this belief, yet, they always have some warped belief or notion that it is going to happen. And how long will Beaver continue to listen to Eddie, Lumpy, Whitey and Larry before he wises up and learns not to do what they say? He could have saved himself a lot of worry and clinical psychologist time on the couch if but he only recalled all the previous times what they said got him into trouble. Even so, Ward and June seemed to set the parental standards before Mike and Carol Brady which no set of parents could live up to. Personally, I would have preferred Robert and Laura Petrie as parents, but I am a bit jealous that Beaver had a hot looking teacher in the form of Mrs. Landers. This show definitely set the standards by which all family shows went by even as far as having the father work in a non-descript, undefined job. As best as I can tell, I'll bet even money he was in advertising, but he could just have easily been a secret agent or a town official without it affecting his home life.
A great family above all and a clumsy kid who is always getting in some sort of trouble, either bad simply bad luck or bad being just a little too mischivious. I love the town they live in, where there is no crime, no heavy traffic, everybody is nice, and people seems to have no mind for evil. My favorite character has to be Ward Claver, who is always ready to bring order to the little chaos Beaver brings into the family, but he does it with love and tenderness, a trademark of 50's and 60's Tv.
Wally and "The Beaver" were great actors if you ask me. They made the show seem so real. You would watch it and think that you were watching a hidden video camera that was in the room. The two of them really made it seem like they were really related. The Father and Mother made the show so entertaining. The best was Wally's friend Eddie. He was the perfect suck up to Mrs. Cleaver. He would always complement her and suck up to her, she knew what was going on so he never got over on her and the parents knew he was bad news. As dumb as Eddie was he was a true friend to Wally and would mess around with Beaver a lot. Great show, and i agree it did become more popular when the reruns came on. Its on TV Land all the time now. It may have been on way before my time, but i still enjoy watching it and thinking about what life was back then.
Leave It To Beaver is a classic! Like the works of director David Lynch there is more to the series than meets the eye. In one episode Wally states he would like to become a tree surgeon. David Lynch's father was a tree surgeon in real life. There are several episodes of Leave It To Beaver where a character mentions bugs and/or exterminators. In one of Lynch's films, Blue Velvet, bugs are often shown and one character pretends to be an exterminator. In the LITB episode about the big fight (Beav vs. Violet), a kid speaks of another kid having gotten his ear torn off in the fight. In Blue Velvet, a detached ear is also featured. Hugh Beaumont played Ward Cleaver. In Blue Velvet, Kyle MacLachlan plays Jeffery Beaumont. Wally and Eddie became boy scouts on the series, Beav wanted to. In real life, David Lynch was an eagle scout. Larry Mondello's sister keeps a diary in one episode. Beav himself keeps a diary in another episode of the series. In Lynch's television series, Twin Peaks, a character named Laura Palmer kept a diary. Beav mentions a dead cat in one episode. In the art of David Lynch, dead, decaying animals are quite often featured. Wally and Beav are fascinated by fire in the Shadow Lake episode of LITB. Fire is a reoccurring theme in many of the director's films. Beav is intrigued by magic/magicians, hypnotism/hynotists. Lynch uses or refers to magic/magicians often in his work. Dreams are a very important element to the director's work. Beav has nightmares several times. Beav enjoys watching gory horror movies. David Lynch enjoys making movies filled with grotesque images. There are many more similarities between the series and the director's life/works...if you only look beneath the surface!
Sue me, I love this show, especially the earlier episodes. It did sometimes get wearing when Beaver still acted exactly the same at eleven or twelve as he had at six. I'm not sure if that was entirely Jerry Mathers or the way he was directed to act. At any rate, the creators were smart to let the show end when it did rather than allow the network to shoot it in color, which would have been a huge mistake. May the Beav live on in glorious black and white somewhere on our tv schedule forever.
Leave it to Beaver is one of those shows from the 50s that has a somewhat idealized vision of the American family. However, unlike Ozzie & Harriet and Father Knows Best, LITB was seen from the point of the view of the children and even the dialogue reflects that. While some of the plotlines are decidedly corny, there is something off the wall about some of the things Beaver does(Falling into a giant soup bowl, pushing a baby buggy across town, getting his head stuck in a fence), but they still feel realistic. And with the idealized family life of the Cleavers, it is hinted that maybe Eddie Haskells family life isnt exactly ideal. And even the scenes between Ward and June seem to ring true, though there are times that Wards little homilies to the kids get on my nerves. Still this is a show that looks better than it did when it first came on. Maybe it was ahead of its time in its own way.
Leave It To Beaver was broadcast before I was born, but it shows how simple life was back in the late 50's, early 60's. Sure, they might of seemed corny, but what a breath of fresh air compared to shows today. Happy endings, funny
situations, and nobody getting hurt or killed. I have been a fan for many years, and will continue to always love this show! I am glad that it has been revived by TV Land, and of course, it is being released on DVD. I hope that other generations will love it as much as we have!
I always liked LITB as a child, there was just something about it.
Having watched every episode, often more than once, sometimes the Inconsistencies used to kill me.
Like one reader noted that ,Gilbert's last name is first called Gates, than Bates, then for two episodes it's Harrison, than back to Bates again. I had not picked up on that, but I do remember in the 1st episode where Gilbert moves in across the street, Beaver and Gilbert get into a fight, and Mr Cleaver and Gilbert's dad are talking, and Gilbert's dad says something like it's hard for the boy, and he (The Dad) is a musician, and they are always moving. Then later in the series, Gilbert says his dad is an electrical engineer. (I thought he was a musician?) Then in the episode where Beaver plays the lead in a play, and has to kiss the girl, the teachers are talking, and one says Gilbert did not make the drama club, because he was giggling, and the other teacher says " I had his Dad as a boy" and he was always giggling too. (What so He grew up in Mayfield and just happened to move back there.)
It's not a big deal, but if your a die hard LITB fan, it just kind of kills me.
I am sure there are others, can't think of anything right now.
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