The Dick Van Dyke Show

Season 1 Episode 1

The Sick Boy and the Sitter

Aired Unknown Oct 03, 1961 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (4)

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out of 10
41 votes
  • "Woman's intuition" warns Laura not to go to a party at Alan Brady's penthouse, but Rob pleads with her and she gives in. They go, but get home a little later than she would have liked. The final scenes reveal whether her intuition was correct or not.

    Although the domestic scenes in this opening episode in the series were hit-and-miss, there are a number of very entertaining moments here that call for a higher rating than I might have otherwise given.

    The scene between Mary Tyler Moore as a nervous Laura and Mary Lee Dearring as Janie, the almost stoic sitter, is one of the highlights of the show, right up through the moment that Rob carries Laura off bodily to get her to stop giving instructions.

    The entertainment the writers put on at the party is the other highlight of the episode, making the whole thing worthwhile in spite of the earlier awkward domestic moments.

    Over the course of the five seasons of this show there were a lot of moments that modern audiences will probably find very old-fashioned, but happily, few of them equalled the almost archaic feel of the scenes between Rob and "Laurie" in this episode. The chemistry probably wasn't really there yet, but the writing didn't help much. Richie was Richie. Not much more can be said on that line.
  • When Rob is invitied to his boss' house for dinner,but Laura informs him that they can't go because they have sick son at home. Rob talks Laura into going, but she still is worried that something might happen, which it does, but not what Laura expects.

    For the first episode of this great series it is pretty good. I love the scene at the office where Buddy and Rob are arguing over what to put in the show and of course one cannot forget the constant insults thrown in Mel's direction by Buddy. I also enjoyed the scene where they are at Alan's apartment and Buddy, Sally, and Rob perform. I absoultely died laughing at Rob's impression of Laura's Uncle Henry. I still don't know how he makes his legs that loose. All in all it was a good episode and I am looking forward to seeing the other episodes that have helped make this show a classic.
  • "The Dick Van Dyke Show" hits the ground running.

    In a very funny first episode, Carl Reiner sets up the formula for "The Dick Van Dyke Show" that would keep the show going over its five seasons. Domestic life intersects with the showbiz career as Rob and Laura attend a dinner party for the network while Ritchie seems to be coming down with a cold.

    Everybody shines in this episode, even Larry Matthews. Laura's frantic instructions to the babysitter, culminating with Rob carrying her out of the house; Rob's pleading with his wife to attend the party and his own attempts to diagnose his son...I was surprised at the number of times I laughed out loud during the show. The episode even gives Morey Amsterdam, Rose Marie and Van Dyke all a chance to showcase their unique talents - Amsterdam as a vaudeville style comic; Marie and her Jimmy Durante impression and Van Dyke in an absolutely hilarious drunk routine.

    It's unusual for a series of any kind to start off on the right foot as well as "Dick Van Dyke does, but it's the start of something great.
  • The Petrie's, Rob and Laura, are invited to his boss's lavish party at his penthouse. Excited Rob tries to convince his reluctant wife to go, but she's too worried about Richie, their son who's ill. Laura's instinct says not to go. Rob tries desperatel

    This the episode that started it all, and the premise is a standard theme, but pulled off with style and a nice warm charm! Young couple leave the ill son with the babysitter, and mother is sure something bad will happen. It does, but not how you think.

    You can see that the actors and even the writers were still hashing out and getting a feel of the show. Rob calls Laura “Lorrie”, and DVD is obviously wearing lots of make-up, especially around the eyes. He almost looks like his real life hero, Stanley Laurel with his white face powder and eyelash treatment!
    The episode shows the potential for showcasing Dick Van Dyke’s considerable talent, as witnessed in the skits he and his two cohorts, Sally Rogers and Buddy Sorell perform for the bosses guests at the party! You will smile as you see how talented these people are. You will know you're in for a treat.
    It also introduces us to a gorgeous and multitalented young actress, you will hear more of as the years come, namely, Mary Tyler Moore!
    This episode along with a few to follow, still feel a bit campy and homogenous, but begin to get more substantial as the crew and cast flesh out the roles, and feel comfortable with the scripts.
    A fair start to an even greater classic series!