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Matinee: Jack Benny's Easter Show Share This on LinkedIn   Tweet This   Forward This

11 April 2020

Saturday matinees long ago let us escape from the ordinary world to the island of the Swiss Family Robinson or the mutinous decks of the Bounty. Why not, we thought, escape the usual fare here with Saturday matinees of our favorite photography films?

So we're pleased to present the 248th in our series of Saturday matinees today: The Jack Benny Program Easter Show.

First broadcast on April 17, 1960, the Jack Benny Program's Easter Show runs nearly half an hour at 26:32. This episode stars Dennis Day, Don Wilson, Mel Blanc, Frank Nelson and one other fella whose name escapes us at the moment.

It has a particularly relevant theme for photographers. Here's the liner notes:

Jack and his loud and pushy girlfriend Mildred walk in the Beverly Hills Easter Parade. Along the route they meet up with many of Jack's usual agitators: Dennis Day, who sings Easter Parade; Don Wilson, dressed as an old lady in an Easter bonnet for the Lux commercial; Professor LeBlanc, Jack's old violin teacher; the two old women who head the Pasadena chapter of Jack's fan club; and photographer Frank Nelson.

It begins with Rochester, Benny's valet played by Eddie Anderson, complaining that Benny doesn't sing in the shower like most people. He plays the violin.

That sets the mood for what comes next. But we won't spoil the fun.

If you're pressed for time, skip to the 19-minute mark for the scene with the portrait photographer. There's a press photographer who shows up for the finale at 24:30, too.

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