In May of 1957, the widely popular sitcom “I Love Lucy” came to a sad end. The show had been on since 1951 before coming to an end. After that, the characters of Ricky and Lucy appeared sporadically on television with “The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour” until 1960.
Viewers were forced to say goodbye to influential and timeless characters like Lucy, Ricky, Ethel, and Fred.
At the same time, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, who were married in real life, also were saying goodbye to one another. At least, they were saying goodbye to 20 years of marriage and a very connected work life.
Lucy and Desi From’I Love Lucy’ Last Kiss
On March 4, 1960, Lucille Ball divorced Desi Arnaz after the two had 20 years of often unstable marriage together.
According to The New York Times, the last kiss the two shared happened to be in the very last moment of their very last episode of “The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour.” The two played the same characters on this show, except the episodes were hour-long and were broadcast throughout the year occasionally.
The last episode was called “Lucy Meets the Mustache.”
His face was tucked into her hair afterward. She said through a blubbering mess of tears, “You’re supposed to say ‘Cut’.” She just so happened to file for divorce that very same day.
“I Love Lucy” had been, in many ways, a chronicle of the love between Ball and Arnaz. Although they had been playing fictional characters, fans grew to love the pair over the course of the show. “I Love Lucy” was one of the first television series to show an interracial couple.
Ball had been crushed after she filed for divorce. Reports say she crashed on a friend’s couch before eventually starring in a Broadway show that failed. Regardless, Ball moved on. She was a fierce trailblazer, owned Desilu Productions, and helped drive the future of television. Their marriage did not define her career.
The end of their relationship was what caused “I Love Lucy” or “The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour” to end. It was a high-profile divorce since the two had become one of America’s favorite couples on television.
A Difficult Marriage
The marriage that was depicted in “I Love Lucy” turned out to be quite different than what was happening behind the scenes. Lucy and Desi would often scream and yell, the marriage was made of a lot of anger.
“If their parents can’t get along and that happens, then kids should be so lucky to have a divorce like my mom and my dad did because they were kind. They never said bad words about each other in front of their children and they stayed friends till the day they died,” Arnaz said.
According to History.com, Arnaz had a problem with both womanizing and alcohol. She actually sought to divorce him four years into being married, but the two got the role of “I Love Lucy” and worked through it.
She partially believed that if the two weren’t with each other all the time that Arnaz would cheat.
A magazine article had once came out with the headline, “Does Desi Really Love Lucy?” It told the story of how Arnaz would often take out prostitutes. It had put the private business of the couple into the world, therefore embarrassing Lucille Ball in the process. Despite that, Ball had an insanely successful and brilliant career.