Monday, March 14, 2022

My Three Sons



'My Three Sons' was a TV show that started in 1960.   The show starred Fred MacMurray, a long time movie actor, as Steve Douglas, a widower with 3 sons.  The oldest, Mike, may have been 16, Robbie about 14 & Chip about 7.  Also in this house was Steve's father in law & the boys' grandfather, Bub, who took care of the house.  The premise of the show is a house full of men surviving life.  

It was one of my favorite 60's shows.  I did not start watching in 1960 because I waas 3.  But it was on in reruns forever & it lasted 12 years so I did see some of the originals.  And I can say it should have stopped after season 5.  Steve, Robbie & Chip went on but Mike got married & left & was never even mentioned again.  And Bub, played by William Frawley, got sick & was replaced by William Demarest.  I've heard of him over the years & guess he was a big old star but Uncle Charley was a horrible character.  Or maybe I just loved Bub so much.  They also added Ernie who they adopted & over the years wives for Robbie, Chip & Steve.  And the most annoying character ever, Steve's step daughter Dodie.  She was like 6 when they got married and she wore short little dress that you put on toddlers with lacy butts hanging out.  Yuck.

Story has it that Fred MacMurray wanted to work less & took on the show but he only filmed occasionally.  Steve was out of town alot.  And he filmed his lines out of sequence & they were edited in.  Even now, looking at the show, I can't tell that.  Steve was a great dad, expected a lot of his sons & was always there for them. He raised gentlemen who were kind & smart.  

The stories on William Frawley were legendery.  He was  a heavy drinker who they said had to film before lunch while he was still sober.  And allegedly grumpy.  He came from 'I Love Lucy' & had a drinking problem then.  And he & Vivian Vance, who played Ethel to his Fred, hated each other.  Word was he didn't like working with women.  So he was good here--no women regularly. But all of the boys on the show loved him to death & he them.  Sadly, at the end of season 5, he was too ill to continue & passed away.  Then we got stuck with Uncle Charlie.

Son Mike got to graduate from high school & college before he met & married Sally.  He was played by Tim Considine.  I loved that he was so smart & kind.  Losing Mike & Bub should have ended the show.  This post is here because Tim died this week & I was thinking about Mike & the show.  I always had a huge crush...on Mike, not necessarily Tim who I knew noting about.  Robbie was a girl crazy athlete who eventually married Katie.  And cutie Chip was a natural, funny & real.  Then after Mike left we got Ernie to make the sons 3 again.  

My Three Sons is probably my favorite show from the 60's...for the first 5 seasons.  

Editing to add:

I discussed the show this week on Twitter by someone who is younger than me but not sure how much younger. She had never seen the early shows but saw them after Mike & Bub left.  We discussed the difference & why it was different.  She's now recording from MeTv but they are later years now.  But it will rotate back around & start over again. And then we'll discuss again.  

But as I thought about why I liked it so much I think it is because the boys are so likeable but also because they are portrayed as young men with a sense of humor, who get along, knew how to dress, could carry on a conversation, treated each other well, were respectful to all adults, loved their dad & grandfather (Bub), were loyal to the women in their lives, were very kind to everyone around them & were the epitomy of a man I wanted to marry someday.  So there, I said it.  I need someone to write me a real man with all of those qualities.  

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