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Bewitched

By Donald Liebenson

My stars! The first, and perhaps most magical, season of Bewitched still casts an enchanting spell. For escapist fantasy, this series, no doubt inspired by the play Bell, Book and Candle, broke significant television ground.

The Stephens were sitcoms' first mixed marriage. Advertising executive Darrin Stephens (Dick York) was mortal, and wife Samantha (Elizabeth Montgomery) was a witch. According to a retrospective segment included on this four-disc set, the Stephenses were also the first couple to sleep in one bed! And Samantha's mother, Endora (the venerable Agnes Morehead), and father, Maurice (Maurice Evans, most popularly known as Dr. Zaius in the original Planet of the Apes, were TV's first separated couple.

Surely, Darrin did for advertising what Dick Van Dyke's Rob Petrie did for comedy writing. And nose-twitching Samantha certainly gave Mary Tyler Moore's Laura Petrie a run for the money in the sexy suburbanite sweepstakes. This high-concept series' saving grace was that Darrin insisted that Samantha not engage in any "hocus-pocus." But in this first season, she would be compelled to use her extraordinary powers to right social wrongs (such as derogatory-witch stereotypes in the Halloween episode "The Witches Are Out"), champion the underdog (a lonely boy whose overprotective mother won't let him play baseball in "Little Pitchers Have Big Fears"), or to restore a troubled boy's Christmas spirit ("A Vision of Sugar Plums"). Or, she might just want to turn the tables on an insulting former girlfriend of Darrin's (the pilot, "Darrin, Take This Witch, Samantha").

York and Montgomery had palpable chemistry. They also received able support by a stellar ensemble of character actors. Alice Pearce and Marion Lorne would earn Emmys for their signature roles as busybody neighbor Mrs. Kravitz and dotty Aunt Clara, respectively. George Tobias portrayed oblivious. long-suffering Abner Kravitz, with David White as Darrin's boss, Larry Tate. In today's more PC climate, Bewitched may offend the "ban Harry Potter" crowd. But for baby boomers especially, this inaugural set will happily conjure up vintage television memories.

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Season One, Season Two

 

Share Your Memories In Our Forums!

Check out our Bewitched forum! Do you have a favorite episode of the show? What do you remember about the series? Do you have any questions about it or its stars? Now you can post comments and questions directly to our TV forums! Click here to see what other Bewitched viewers have said or to post your own comments about the show!

Your Memories Shared!

This sitcom (with its original cast) was one of the funniest and cleverest ever produced, in my opinion. Having the beautiful and talented Elizabeth Montgomery as its star certainly didn"t hurt either! Dick York lives on in the hearts of his fans as the forever-befuddled Darrin, while Agnes Moorehead bedevils him mercilessy and hilariously. Excellent and goofy sight gags helped also. In its early years, you just couldn"t ask for better than Liz and company in Bewitched!

--Gadget57

Note: This is just a random sample of the Bewitched messages in our TV forums! Click here to see what others have said or to post your own comments!

 

TV TIDBITS

Aired: September 17, 1964 - July 1, 1972

Cast: Elizabeth Montgomery, Agnes Moorehead, Dick Sargent (Darrin, 1969-1972), Dick York (Darrin, 1964-1969), David White (Larry Tate)

Network: ABC

Genre: Sitcom

Theme song

SpinoffsTabitha

Image courtesy of ABC


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Copyright 1994-2017, Super70s.com. All Rights Reserved.
Use of this site is subject to our Terms of Service.
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