Mom Always Liked You Best
Sunday, February 5, 1967, was 12 days after my first phone call with the boy who would become my husband a year later.
Sunday, February 5, 1967, was 9 days after the blind date in a snowstorm with that boy.
Sunday, February 5, 1967, I was in my dorm room at Michigan State University, studying for classes the second semester of my Sophomore year.
Our dorm had a tv room.
It was rarely used except for one show we all gathered to watch, Peyton Place.
Mia Farrow, married, inappropriately we all thought, to the much older Frank Sinatra, had left Peyton Place in September of 1966 and the show was never the same.
We were still loyal followers.
But that was during the week.
We could sneak away for a half hour break in the evening before we went back to study.
On February 5, 1967, The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour debuted.
And, I missed it.
It ended September 15, 1969.
By the show’s second of three seasons, my boyfriend and I had married, had a son and were living together.
We could tuck our infant son into bed.
We could watch the uproarious Smothers Brothers for an hour of laughter every Sunday evening.
We could appreciate their satire on the Vietnam War.
We knew full well we would be lucky to have a year together before my newly-minted 2nd Lieutenant, U.S. Army husband would be deployed to Vietnam.
But, the show’s CBS owners didn’t like them making jokes about Vietnam and insisted they submit the show for censorship in advance.
In 1969, the show won an Emmy Award for best writing.
And, was cancelled.
And, my husband was in Vietnam.
What Else Did They Do Besides Jokes About Vietnam?
Not limiting themselves to satire about Vietnam, they took on politicians and Wall Street corruption.
In addition to being the funniest duet on tv, the Smothers Brothers hosted a number of other comedians.
- Remember Pat Paulsen’s dry humor?
- George Carlin had a bit on how Native Americans must have had sergeants when they organized
- Bob Newhart, did an impression of an air traffic controller
And, the music.
They showcased new singer-songwriters like Harry Nilsson and a host of other groups that reads like a Who’s Who of 60s music:
- Bands like The Doors
- The Jefferson Airplane
- Guitar-smashing The Who, who nearly burned down the studio
- Glen Campbell sang Wichita Lineman
- The sweet sounds of brother and sister The Carpenters
- Liberace, with his too long piano
- Peter, Paul and Mary and Donovan in a medley
The Smothers Brothers delighted us with their distinctive comedy, like the perennially funny bit they worked into many of their routines, “Mom always liked you best.”
And, they soothed us with their memorable harmony, like this affectionate, funny rendition of “My Old Man.”
Happy 46th anniversary to the irreverent, hilarious music and comedy of The Smothers Brothers.
Where were you when you watched The Smothers Brothers?
Do your grandchildren know who they are?
Do you remember any of their songs?
To remembering the comedy, music and laughter of The Smothers Brothers
Carol Covin, Granny-Guru