This is certainly good news...but not really so unexpected considering the (immense) popularity of the classic I LOVE LUCY (CBS 1951-57) tv series.
However, as originally broadcast the first LUCY-DESI COMEDY HOUR (CBS 1957-60) special "Lucy Takes a Cruise to Havana" (06/11/1957) actually aired in a 75 minute timeslot making it somewhat longer than the usual 50 minute (minus the commercials) presentation.
Subsequent tv syndication versions of this segment were later pared down to 50 minutes to (comfortably) fit an hour long timeslot (with the added commercials).
Now, the big question is which one will be included in this upcoming DVD release?!
Naturally we all hope the original longer version telecast in 1957 on primetime.
As the longer version still exists and has been shown at the Museum of Radio and Television I would be very surprised if it were not included. I also heard that the "I Love Lucy" Movie would be included as an extra. This was 3 half hour "I Love Lucy" with extra connecting scenes so it would flow as one story. It was supposed to be released in theaters but this idea was canceled when Lucy and Desi signed to make the film " The Long, Long Trailer"
Therefore, they should also restore the original opening and closing credits, and have those "Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour" openings and closings as extras. Those were created in 1962 (using the same typeface, so to speak, as was used on the first season of "The Lucy Show," which also began that year.)
I certainly don't have to mention this to the informed participants of this discussion thread but the first 5 LUCY-DESI hour long presentations were originally aired as infrequent tv specials throughout the 1957-58 television season on CBS.
The remaining 8 hour long segments were originally part of the (WESTINGHOUSE) DESILU PLAYHOUSE (CBS 1958-60) anthology tv series cataloque.
This is a complete title listing of all 13 LUCY-DESI COMEDY HOUR episodes:
01) "Lucy Takes a Cruise to Havana" (06/11/1957) 02) "The Celebrity Next Door" (03/12/1957) 03) "Lucy Hunts Uranium" (03/01/1958) 04) "Lucy Wins a Racehorse" (03/02/1958) 05) "Lucy Goes to Sun Valley" (14/04/1958)
(WESTINGHOUSE) DESILU PLAYHOUSE
First Season (1958-59)
06) "Lucy Goes to Mexico" (06/10/1958) 07) "Lucy Makes Room for Daddy" (01/12/1958) 08) "Lucy Goes to Alaska" (09/02/1959) 09) "Lucy Wants a Career" (13/04/1959) 10) "Lucy's Summer Vacation" (08/06/1959)
Second Season (1959-60)
11) "Milton Berle Hides Out at the Ricardos" (25/09/1959) 12) "The Ricardos Go to Japan" (27/11/1959) 13) "Lucy Meets the Mustache" (01/04/1960)
The generic moniker THE LUCY-DESI COMEDY HOUR is actually this collective group of presentations' later summer repeat airings (on CBS) and tv syndication title.
Syndication isn't quite correct. The title was used for the shows when the CBS network ran them in the summers of 1962, '63, '64, '65 and '67. These shows were syndicated years later, broken up into two segments, with the title "We Love Lucy."
Actually, I saw a Viacom trade ad in a "Broadcasting" magazine from 1970 ('69?) advertising the 13 hour-long shows for syndication to local stations as "The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour." Not sure if any local stations ever picked up the show, but the episodes were offered under that title decades before the later "We Love Lucy" repackaging.
Yeah, it sure is disappointing news but I'm really not surprised.
It seems that Paramount is simply marketing the selfsame video transfers that were previously released on VHS. The powers-that-be probably don't want to invest the time and expense to fully restore the lengthier version of "Lucy Takes a Cruise to Havana" (06/11/1957) something that would have been most interesting to see.
At least they are including the extra scenes that were later deleted for subsequent airings of this segment.
Not if they are putting out the syndication version of each episode. That would go way beyond the edited "Havana" episode. I am waiting for more specific and definitive news. The postings on lucyfan.com were way too general to get riled up about. Yet.
After all they went through with "I Love Lucy", including replacing discs for Season Four, I'll be very surprised if these hour shows will be the cut-down syndicated versions. There's no reason for them to be -- TV Land showed the complete, unedited versions about 10 years ago (except for the Havana episode, of course.)
One theory is that the footage is not in the best of shape and would be too jarring. The same thing happened with Season 4, and the replaced sets contained the cut footage in the special features section.