‘I Love Lucy’: Why Lucille Ball’s Daughter Said ‘the Greats Steal from the Greats’ in Context of Iconic Scene

by Quentin Blount

Ever heard the old saying, “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it?” Well, the daughter of I Love Lucy star Lucille Ball once said that actors tend to have that same mindset.

Fans of classic television know and love Lucie Arnaz as the daughter of I Love Lucy star Lucille Ball. And Arnaz once said that actors “stole” from each other in a 2019 question and answer with WTOP News. In making that claim, she referenced Season 2 Episode 1 of I Love Lucy, “Job Switching.”

“There’s two great scenes. The first one is where she’s trying to learn how to mush the chocolate around and it seems like great fun, but the other lady is stone dramatic with no sense of humor. Lucy suddenly realizes there’s a fly. It flies around her head, to the right, to the left, then she tries to hit it and smacks the woman with chocolate on her face. The woman couldn’t believe the director was telling her she should slap Lucy back. Mom was like, ‘It’s OK, it’s pretend!’ You can see the lady bite her lip trying not to laugh.”

‘I Love Lucy’ Episode Inspired by Charlie Chaplin’s ‘Modern Times’

Arnaz admitted that the entire scene was inspired by the 1936 silent comedy film written and directed by Charlie Chaplin, Modern Times.

“It all builds to the iconic conveyor built scene where Lucy and Ethel struggle to wrap chocolate candies, inspired by Charlie Chaplin’s ‘Modern Times’ (1936),” Arnaz explained. “They were inspired by remembering the comedy of Chaplin. The greats steal from the greats. ‘Laverne & Shirley stole from ‘I Love Lucy.’ It’s a compliment.”

According to the only daughter of the late Lucille Ball, I Love Lucy was brilliant. Arnaz said that it is a show that “you can always imagine yourself in [Lucy’s] shoes.

“That scene where she ends up with Ethel, thinking, ‘Oh, wrapping candies, that’s going to be much easier,’ that’s frickin’ brilliant. We can all imagine ourselves in that position. What would we do? The brilliance of that show is that you can always imagine yourself in her shoes. It’s not totally unbelievable how she gets where she gets, it just gets stretched to an enchanted sense of play, which is how my mom would describe that type of acting.”

Did Lucie Arnaz Ever Appear in an Episode of the Show?

We all know that Lucie Arnaz is the only daughter of I Love Lucy actors Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. But did she ever actually appear in an episode of the iconic ’50s show? Well for a long time, she thought she did. But that was not the case.

Arnaz found out years later that she was not ever in an episode of her parent’s hit show. She had believed for years that she and her brother were among a group of kids in the episode “The Ricardos Dedicate a Statute.”

“I was never on the ‘I Love Lucy’ show except in my mother’s uterus when she was pregnant with me during the pilot.”