‘I Love Lucy’: Lucille Ball Said She Missed Show ‘Every Day’ of Her Life, Explained Why She Couldn’t ‘Go Back’

by Keeli Parkey

Decades after the iconic sitcom “I Love Lucy” came to an end, its star said there was no way she could go back to the show – even though she missed it dearly.

That star, of course, was Lucille Ball. And, it was during an appearance on “The Tonight Show” in 1985 that she talked about missing her groundbreaking sitcom. Interestingly, the host of that episode of the famous late-night show was another funny woman. That woman was Joan Rivers.

“Do you ever want to go back again? Do you ever miss the regimentation of getting up and doing it?” Rivers asked the “I Love Lucy” star.

“Honey, I miss it every day of my life,” Ball responded. “But, I can’t go back. You can’t top what we’ve done – 25 years or more. And, you can’t go back.”

And, while Rivers understood what the actress meant, she also wanted to know if another comedy was in Ball’s future.

“Not go back, but go forward,” Rivers said. “Do you ever say, ‘Gee, let’s get another show together? Let’s do another sitcom.”

Sadly, for television comedy fans around the world, the “I Love Lucy” star’s reply was in the negative.

“No. I wouldn’t try to top what we did. We had it too good. We were in early – real early,” Ball said. “And, kind of made up our own rules as we went along, you know. And, no, I wouldn’t try to top it. I like to work. I miss not working and I miss Viv very much and Bill. And, the whole show – the whole arena I miss. But, you don’t go back.”

The “Viv” and “Bill” Lucille Ball referenced were actors Vivian Vance and William Frawley. They played Ethel and Fred Mertz on “I Love Lucy.”

‘I Love Lucy’ Star Appeared on ‘The Tonight Show’ in 1985 to Promote a Dramatic Role

“So, what do you do? Give us a typical Lucille Ball day,” Joan Rivers then asked Ball during the interview.

“I do a lot of things, but I couldn’t give you a typical day,” Ball said. “I’m traveling a lot now and I’m pushing ‘Stone Pillow’ at the moment so, I’m really going.”

“Stone Pillow” is a 1985 television movie that starred Lucille Ball as a homeless woman. Needless to say, the role was very different than the comedic roles she was known for.

You can watch Lucille Ball talk about “I Love Lucy” and her dramatic television movie role on “The Tonight Show” in 1985 below.