CTVA US Comedy - "It's a Great Life" (1954-56) Michael O'Shea, William Bishop

The Classic TV Archive - US Comedy Series

It's A Great Life (1954-56)
 aka The Bachelors (syndication title)
Episode Guide compiled by The Classic TV Archive
with contributions by: Jim Brent 
Library of Congress (telnet://locis.loc.gov)
Internet Movie Database (https://us.imdb.com)
Raydic Corporation (Ray Singer, Dick Chevillat)
Famous Artists Agency, Inc. & Noel Singer
Broadcast History on NBC:
September 7, 1954-August 30, 1955,    Tuesdays 10:30pm EST
September 4, 1955-June 3, 1956, Sundays 7:00pm EST

US Comedy series 1954-56 78 episodes x 30 min bw
Michael O'Shea as Denny Davis
William Bishop as Steve Connors
James Dunn as Uncle Earl
Frances Bavier as Mrs. Amy Morgan
Barbara Bates as Kathy Morgan
Harry Harvey as Mr. Russell    

Two young ex-GI's try to make it in Hollywood.

############## It's A Great Life #############
############## season 1 1954-55 ##############
NBC Tuesdays 10:30pm Eastern
39 episodes

1.01 [--] It's A Great Life: (Pilot Episode)
7Sep54 NBC
This new comedy series concerns two ex-GI's who come to Hollywood
to earn a living. The pair answer an ad for a furnished room
and meet Uncle Earl, the unemployed brother of widow Amy Morgan.
Earl rents them the room but complications develop.

1.02 [--] It's A Great Life: GO HOME TO YOUR MOTHER
14Sep54 NBC   
Two ex-GI's who have just come to Hollywood, try to find a way
to get rid of the other boarders staying in Mrs. Morgan's home.
The two are aided and abetted in this plan by Uncle Earl, who
comes up with one of his "great" ideas.

1.03 [--] It's A Great Life: THE BABY SITTERS
21Sep54    NBC
Mrs. Morgan has to leave the boarding house after she has
promised to take care of a neighbor's baby. She asks Uncle Earl
to help out and he passes the job on to Denny and Steve.

1.04 [--] It's A Great Life: OBJECTIVE MOON
28Sep54 NBC   
Uncle Earl, Denny and Steve invade a motion picture studio where
they become "moonmen" for a day.

1.05 [--] It's A Great Life: DANIEL'S DEPARTMENT STORE
5Oct54 NBC   
Denny and Steve find jobs as furniture salesmen in a department
store. In order to sell their quota, the two ex-GI's enlist the
aid of Uncle Earl. Uncle Earl, always willing if not able,
obliges the boys with some of his "expert" advise.

1.06 [--] It's A Great Life: 50-50
12Oct54 NBC
Steve and Denny make plans to take Mrs. Morgan, Kathy and Uncle
Earl out to dinner. A problem arises when Denny spends the money
they expected to use and is afraid to tell his pal.

1.07 [--] It's A Great Life: I CAN GET IT FOR YOU WHOLESALE
19Oct54 NBC
Mrs. Morgan asks Denny and Steve to buy a birthday present for
her to give her daughter Kathy. Denny insists that he can get it
wholesale from his friend, Sam, and thus save lots of money.
The two boys go down to Sam's place and discover too late the
real reason for his low prices.

1.08 [--] It's A Great Life: A VISIT FROM STEVE'S MOTHER
26Oct54 NBC   
(No synopsis available)

1.09 [--] It's A Great Life: TURKEY DINNER
2Nov54 NBC   
(No synopsis available)
Note: NYC Edition of TV Guide indicated NBC station pre-empted
for Election coverage during this time slot.

1.10 [--] It's A Great Life: DANNY BUYS A STEER
9Nov54 NBC   
Earl Complains that Denny and Steve are eating the Morgans out
of house and pocketbook. This leads Denny to attempt a good deed.

1.11 [--] It's A Great Life: THE BOYS REDECORATE THE ATTIC
16Nov54 NBC   
Denny and Steve decide to improve their living quarters by
redecorating their attic room. Earl offers his anything but
able assistance and the three amateur decorators leave the
Morgan attic looking like the victim of a hurricane.

1.12 [--] It's A Great Life: A DATE FOR MRS. MORGAN
23Nov54 NBC   
The boys and Kathy think Mrs. Morgan is planning an elopement
with an undesirable character.

1.13 [--] It's A Great Life: THE CLOSET
30Nov54 NBC   
Uncle Earl picks a rather unfortunate time to fix the closet
door. His do-it-yourself project coincides with the arrival of
the banker from whom Steve and Denny plan to borrow money.

1.14 [--] It's A Great Life: THE VACUUM CLEANER SALESMAN
7Dec54 NBC       
Denny and Steve become the innocent victims of a gang of jewelthieves.

1.15 [--] It's A Great Life: DENNY'S BIG NIGHT
14Dec54 NBC
At the last minute Denny's date for a big formal affair cannot
go. Well-meaning friends go out of their way to make sure the ex-GI has a good time anyway.

1.16 [--] It's A Great Life: THERE IS A SANTA CLAUS
21Dec54 NBC   
Guest Cast:
Hugh Corcoran (as Tommy Miller)
Louis Lettieri (as Rodney)
Helen Winston (as Mrs. Miller)
Uncle Earl takes his once-a-year employment quite seriously this
year, as he finds himself doing overtime as a department-store Santa.

1.17 [--] It's A Great Life: THE DRIVER'S LICENSE
28Dec54 NBC   
Mrs. Morgan is stopped by a policeman for over-parking and
discovers that she doesn't have a license with her.

1.18 [--] It's A Great Life: A JOB FOR KATHY
4Jan55 NBC   
Kathy tries out for a job in a motion picture but learns she
isn't the right type. Steve and Denny go to work to help turn
her into a sultry siren.

1.19 [--] It's A Great Life: SURPRISE PARTY
11Jan55 NBC
Denny, Steve and Earl lend their helping hands to Mrs. Morgan
when she finds she is too ill to plan her woman's club party.
Needless to say confusion is the keynote of the affair.

1.20 [--] It's A Great Life: THE MISSING STAMP
18Jan55 NBC
Steve and Denny continue their attempt to sell vacuum cleaners
and visit a dealer in rare stamps. During the demonstration one
of the stamps mysteriously disappears.   

1.21 [--] It's A Great Life: THE BORROWED TV SET
25Jan55 NBC   
Amy Morgan is upset when she learns that her new TV set won't be
delivered in time to see her favorite program.

1.22 [--] It's A Great Life: KATHY'S FORMER BOYFRIEND
1Feb55 NBC
Kathy's former boyfriend comes back to town, and Denny offers
to help her get rid of him. The plan is to pretend Kathy and
Denny are married, but the pretend gets a little out of hand.

1.23 [--] It's A Great Life: FRIENDSHIP
8Feb55 NBC   
Steve forgets to buy Denny a present on their 10th anniversary of
their meeting each other in a foxhole. This is the beginning of
a falling out that tests the peace-making powers of Earl, Mrs.
Morgan and Kathy.

1.24 [--] It's A Great Life: THE ENGAGEMENT RING
15Feb55 NBC   
Steve agrees to buy an engagement ring for a pal who only has
24-hour pass. Denny and Earl overhear Steve talking to a jeweler
and think the ring is for Kathy. They decide to do a good deed
and get Steve a bigger ring.

1.25 [--] It's A Great Life: WINTER SPORTS
22Feb55 NBC
Denny's new girl friend, Vera, is the athletic type, so Denny,
Steve and Kathy join her in making the rounds of the golf clubs,
tennis courts, etc. Since the pace nearly kills the boys, they
put their minds to work to find a way to rest their weary limbs.

1.26 [--] It's A Great Life: THE NIGHT WATCHMAN
1Mar55 NBC
Denny and Steve get the very reluctant Earl a job as the night
watchman in a warehouse.

1.27 [--] It's A Great Life: FOSTER FATHER
8Mar55 NBC   
Denny undertakes to support a French war orphan. But through a
misunderstanding, the little boy comes to America.

1.28 [--] It's A Great Life: TIJUANA
15Mar55 NBC
Mrs. Morgan joins the boys on a trip to Mexico where they
befriend a few unsavory characters.

1.29 [--] It's A Great Life: KATHY GOES TO NEW YORK
22Mar55 NBC   
Kathy is offered a small part in a play in New York. Earl is
sent down to the airport to pick up the tickets and promptly
loses the money.

1.30 [--] It's A Great Life: THE MATCHMAKERS
29Mar55    NBC
The boys want to find Mrs. Morgan a husband.

1.31 [--] It's A Great Life: THE HOSPITAL
5Apr55 NBC   
Mrs. Morgan isn't feeling well so she calls a doctor. Earl
protest about the high cost of medical bills leads to a
"share-the-sick" plan among Denny, Steve and Earl.

1.32 [--] It's A Great Life: THE BOYS CLEAN HOUSE
12Apr55 NBC       
Spring housecleaning at the Morgans.

1.33 [--] It's A Great Life: FORMAL FOR AMY
19Apr55 NBC       
Amy Morgan is all excited about a coming formal affair until her
gown comes back from the cleaners. The dress is ruined and all
seems lost; but her three loyal "helpers" take over the problem.

1.34 [--] It's A Great Life: DENNY SINGS
26Apr55 NBC       
Amy, Steve and Earl decide that Denny should get a job as a singer.

1.35 [--] It's A Great Life: THREE HUNGRY MEN
3May55 NBC       
Steve, Denny and Earl take a long look at their widening
waistlines and decide to diet.

1.36 [--] It's A Great Life: THE MISSING HUSBAND
10May55 NBC       
Guest Cast:
Randy Stuart
Dorothy Abbott
Denny begins to wonder about his mind when a lovely young French
girl claims she's his wife!

1.37 [--] It's A Great Life: THE INHERITANCE
17May55 NBC   
Steve inherits some money, and in the find old tradition of
"share and share alike" Denny and Earl proceed to spend it.

1.38 [--] It's A Great Life: THE PARAKEET
24May55 NBC       
Spring is here. Uncle Earl stirs his bones and comes out of his
hibernation with, of all things, the desire to work! And raising
parakeets, the way Earl does it, is work too.

1.39 [--] It's A Great Life: THE EASY CHAIR
31May55 NBC       
Mrs. Morgan's redecorating plans are a threat to Steve's favorite
easy chair. Earl and Denny aid their buddy in his fight for
Note: End of the first season's 39 episodes.

Summer Network Re-Euns on NBC (7Jun55 - 30Aug55)

7Jun55 re-run of "The Baby Sitters" (original air date 9/21/54)
14Jun55 re-run of "Winder Sports" (original air date 2/22/55)
21Jun55 re-run of - Information not available
28Jun55 re-run of - Information not available
5Jul55 re-run of "Denny's Big Night" (original air date 12/14/54)
12Jul55 re-run of "I Can Get It For You Wholesale" (original air date 10/19/54)
19Jul55 re-run of "Information not available
26Jul55 re-run of "The Driver's License" (original air date 12/28/54)
2Aug55 re-run of "The Vacuum Cleaner Salesman" (original air date 12/7/54)
9Aug55 re-run of "The Missing Stamp"(original air date 1/18/55)
16Aug55 re-run of "The Borrowed TV Set" (original air date 1/25/55)
23Aug55 re-run of "The Hospital" (original air date 4/5/55)
30Aug55 re-run of "Denny Sings" (original air date 4/26/55)

############## It's A Great Life #############
############## season 2 1955-56 ##############
NBC Sundays 7:00pm Eastern
39 new episodes

2.01 [40] It's A Great Life: CALL MICHIGAN-7099
4Sep55 NBC
An anonymous phone number gets Denny, Steve and Earl in trouble.
When the mysterious number is called, the police arrive at the
Morgan home.

2.02 [41] It's A Great Life: HAY BURNER
11Sep55 NBC   
Steve is thrilled when he gets a bonus for selling so many vacuum

2.03 [42] It's A Great Life: FORTUNE HUNTERS
18Sep55 NBC
Earl learns that one of his old flames, now a wealthy widow, is
expected in town shortly. But when she arrives, all three of the
boys are smitten with the woman's pretty daughter.

2.04 [43] It's A Great Life: THE PAPER DRIVE
25Sep55 NBC   
Steve and Denny generously offer to deliver a load of old papers
for the school paper drive. But Uncle Earl is also busy being a
do-gooder, and too many good Samaritans in one household make
for a lot of confusion.

2.05 [44] It's A Great Life: HASH HOUSE
2Oct55 NBC   
Those two sterling businessmen, Steve and Denny, buy a roadside
diner, unaware that the new highway won't be passing the door.
But the third misguided musketeer, Earl, takes care of everything.

2.06 [45] It's A Great Life: B-DAY FOR EARL
9Oct55 NBC   
Amy, Steve and Denny plan a surprise "This Is Your Life" birthday
party for the poor unsuspecting Earl.

2.07 [46] It's A Great Life: THE GIRL FRIEND
16Oct55 NBC   
Steve and Denny get new territory in which to sell their vacuum
cleaners. Their first customer is none other than the boss's girl
friend, and this leads to all sorts of trouble.

2.08 [47] It's A Great Life: MAN'S BEST FRIEND
23Oct55 NBC
Guest Cast:
Harvis Davenport
Earl's position in the animal kingdom is questioned when he
claims to hear the sound of a whistle pitched too high for human ears.

2.09 [48] It's A Great Life: DOUBLE DATE
30Oct55 NBC   
Guest Cast:
Lola Albright (as Marilyn)
Barbara Logan (as Carole)
Steve has a big problem: He is crazy about his girl friend's
beautiful sister. He accepts the aid of his pal Denny and soon
has an even bigger problem.

2.10 [49] It's A Great Life: HIGH PRESSURE
6Nov55 NBC   
Fired from their jobs as vacuum-cleaner salesmen, Steve and Denny
have a scheme. They will make an enormous sale and get back in
their boss's good graces.

2.11 [50] It's A Great Life: THE MOVIE STAR
13Nov55 NBC   
(No synopsis available)

2.12 [51] It's A Great Life: THE CRYSTAL BALL
20Nov55 NBC   
A fortune teller looks into Earl's future, and Steve and Denny
decide to help make the predictions come true.

2.13 [52] It's A Great Life: THE BIG GAME
27Nov55 NBC   
Steve gets four tickets for a big football game, but somehow,
with the able help of Earl and Denny, ends up with more.

2.14 [53] It's A Great Life: THE PRIVATE LINE
4Dec55 NBC
Guest Cast:
Allen Jenkins (as Plumber)
Jan Shepard (as Miss Brewster)
Steve and Denny have a private telephone line installed in their
room, but the telephone is more troublesome than convenient. It
seems the telephone number formerly belonged to a bookie.

2.15 [54] It's A Great Life: THE FABULOUS FOUNDLING
11Dec55 NBC   
A beautiful girl, looking for a room, inspires great concern on
the part of Steve, Denny and Earl.

2.16 [55] It's A Great Life: HAWAIIAN HOLIDAY
18Dec55 NBC   
Earl is the lucky winner of a trip to Hawaii for two. While Steve
and Denny are figuring out how to make it a trip for three, Amy
starts packing her bags under the assumption that she will
accompany her brother.

[--] 25Dec55 NBC re-run of "There is a Santa Claus" (first aired 21Dec54)

2.17 [56] It's A Great Life: THE ELUSIVE DIME
1Jan56 NBC   
No synopsis available

2.18 [57] It's A Great Life: BEAUTY CONTEST
8Jan56 NBC
Denny is unhappy with his job as chairman of the annual veterans
affair until he learns that the main event will be a beauty
contest. Naturally Earl and Steve get into the act.

2.19 [58] It's A Great Life: THE LADY AND THE PAINTING
15Jan56 NBC
    Steve brings a French art student to dinner.

2.20 [59] It's A Great Life: HOUSE GUEST
22Jan56 NBC   
Guest Cast:
Randy Stuart (as Phyllis Sherman)
Chick Chandler (as Al Sherman)
Madge Blake (as Ruth)
Gladys Hurlbut (as Alice)
Vince Barnett (as Dave)
Frank Orth (as Charlie)
Things are a little hectic at the Morgan house. Steve and Denny
have invited an Army buddy and his wife to stay overnight without
knowing that Uncle Earl has invited two friends to spend the
night with him. Amy adds to the guest list by showing up with
two girl friends.

2.21 [60] It's A Great Life: THE SQUARE CIRCLE
29Jan56 NBC   
In order to buy Amy a fur coat, Denny arranges a prize fight
between Steve and a notorious fighter.

2.22 [61] It's A Great Life: SMOG GETS IN YOUR EYES
5Feb56 NBC   
The problem starts when Amy sends the boys downtown to get extra
tables and chairs. The smog downtown is terrible.

2.23 [62] It's A Great Life: SCREEN TEST
12Feb56 NBC   
A talent scout visits the Morgan household. Denny suddenly
becomes a budding opera singer, Steve spouts Shakespeare and
Earl becomes a soft shoe artist.

2.24 [63] It's A Great Life: RENEE AND THE SURVEY
19Feb56 NBC   
No synopsis available

2.25 [64] It's A Great Life: BACHELOR PARTY
26Feb56 NBC    
The fun-loving trio gives a bachelor party for friend George
Allison, which lands the hapless bridegroom in jail on the eve
of his wedding.

2.26 [65] It's A Great Life: THE VOICE
4Mar56 NBC   
The boys hear the dulcet tones of a Red Cross girl and, of course,
they must meet the girl.

2.27 [66] It's A Great Life: ALL FOR AMY
11Mar56 NBC   
On Amy's birthday the boys get some unusual ideas about how she
should be treated. But the trio's best laid plans produce nothing
but confusion.

2.28 [67] It's A Great Life: PRIVATE EYES
18Mar56 NBC   
Guest Cast:
Phyllis Coates (as Lolo)
Herb Vigran (as Mickey Spade)
Mike Ross (as Charlie)
Richard Reeves (as Hal)
A pretty damsel in distress persuades the boys to turn detective.
They find out too late that the banking assignment they handled
for her was not a withdrawal, but a holdup.

2.29 [68] It's A Great Life: GLAMOUR DOLL
25Mar56 NBC
Guest Cast:
Barbara Nichols (as Caroline Talbot)
Tommy Noonan (as Tommy)
King Donovan (as Director)
The boys try to further the career of a dizzy blonde movie queen
who wants to become a Shakespearean actress.

2.30 [69] It's A Great Life: KID SISTER
1Apr56 NBC       
Guest Cast:
Jeri Lou James (as Susan)
Susan Morrow (as Donna)
Nancy Kulp (as Girl)
Steve's new romance is a beautiful girl whom he has admired from
afar in a restaurant. When Denny and Earl try to horn in on the
act, they find that they have to deal with the beauty's kid sister.

2.31 [70] It's A Great Life: THE RAFFLE TICKET
8Apr56 NBC       
No synopsis available

2.32 [71] It's A Great Life: THE RETURN OF CAROLINE
15Apr56 NBC       
The Glamorous movie queen Caroline Cabot confesses that she hates
being a movie star. She just wants to be a happily married
housewife. So she tries to persuade Denny to elope with her.
Note: The character of Caroline was named Talbot on
March 25 episode "Glamor Doll", but named Cabot on April 15.
episode "The Return of Caroline"

2.33 [72] It's A Great Life: THE PALM SPRINGS STORY
22Apr56 NBC       
The boys pool their resources and take Amy to palm Springs for
the week-end.

2.34 [73] It's A Great Life: THE YACHTING PARTY
29Apr56 NBC       
Guest Cast:
Jill Jarmyn (as Alice Adams)
Noreen Nash (as Thelma Adams)
Russell Hicks (as Mr. Hicks)
The boys' extravagant claim of yachting prowess are put to the
test by a pair of beautiful sisters. The land-lubbers find
themselves at sea in a 50-foot yacht with the girls and their father.

2.35 [74] It's A Great Life: OPERATION FOR EARL
6May56 NBC
When the doctor decides Earl's tonsils have to come out, Earl
tries every trick in the book to avoid going under the knife.

2.36 [75] It's A Great Life: OLD SOLDIERS NEVER DIE
13May56 NBC    
When the boys regale an army colonel with tales of their GI
experiences, they find themselves back in uniform.

2.37 [76] It's A Great Life: THE CHARITY DRIVE
20May56 NBC   
Guest Cast:
Howard McNear (as Mr. Johnson)
Barbara Pepper (as Housewife)
Robert Foulk (as House-owner)
Amy rues the day that she agreed to let the boys help her with
a fund-raising campaign.

2.38 [77] It's A Great Life: PASSPORT FOR AMY
27May56 NBC       
Guest Cast:
Douglas Fowley (as Con Man)
Herbert Anderson (as Passport Clerk)
Sarah Selby (as Woman)
They boys try to help get a passport for Amy when she plans a
trip to London. They become entangled in red tape and make easy
targets for a swindler.

2.39 [78] It's A Great Life: THE HOUSEKEEPER  (Final show of the series)
3Jun56 NBC   
Amy hires a housekeeper to keep things tidy for the boys while she is on vacation.

############## It's A Great Life #############
################# the end ##################

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