‘I Love Lucy’ Was So Popular It Caused This Strange Phenomenon

by Jeremy Spirogis
Lucille Ball in I Love Lucy

I Love Lucy, which started airing in 1951 made its star Lucille Ball an icon of TV. The sitcom was so widespread, actually, that throughout the advert breaks throughout I Love Lucy, so many Americans had been utilizing the lavatory that it brought on this wild phenomenon to happen nation-wide.

‘I Love Lucy’ lead solid member, Lucille Ball, was a ‘trailblazer’

Lucille Ball in I Love Lucy
Lucille Ball as Lucy Ricardo works in a sweet manufacturing unit on an episode of I Love Lucy titled “Job Switching” from 1952 | CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images

RELATED: Lucille Ball’s Net Worth and Her Earnings From ‘I Love Lucy’

Per The New York Times, because of I Love Lucy, “Lucille Ball was not only a superstar by 1960.”

“She was also a trailblazer, a female mogul,” the paper continued. As The Times defined, her dominance over the media business was widespread:

Desilu Productions, the business empire she break up with Desi Arnaz, her ex, owned probably the most TV-studio area and was ‘the single biggest filler of television time’ within the business, as Life Magazine put it.

While the sitcom I Love Lucy is without doubt one of the most recognizable merchandise in American tv historical past, it’s straightforward to overlook simply how ubiquitous the present was in American tradition on the time it aired.

“One measure of her reputation: The nation’s reservoirs dipped each time I Love Lucy broke for a industrial,” The New York Times reported.

The big impact on the water reservoirs was attributable to the truth that most viewers had been utilizing the advert breaks to go to the lavatory. Because they merely might not miss one second of Lucy and Ricky.

“A whole country, flushing as one,” the publication put it, fairly poetically.

During the episodes, ‘I Love Lucy’ viewers timed their toilet breaks with commercials

In the present age of TV, when each platform is making its personal content material and several other folks watch exhibits on their telephones and laptops, it’s practically unimaginable to think about simply how many individuals had been all watching I Love Lucy — and hitting the bathroom throughout commercials. But with fewer choices on TV throughout the 50s — and the truth that Ball had a mega-hit on her palms — the affect was felt, even within the sewers.

Media Post appeared to substantiate this concept. In a post commenting on the supposed “sudden revelation that consumers are skipping commercials,” they commented on how TV watchers lacking out on advertisements goes many years again.

“… the phenomenon was first recognized within the 1950s when water stress dramatically dropped in St. Louis throughout industrial breaks in I Love Lucy,” Media Post reported.

What did Lucille Ball do after her widespread TV present ended?

The New York Times additionally not too long ago reported on one among Ball’s least profitable ventures: the Broadway musical she starred in after I Love Lucy got here to a detailed.

I Love LucyI Love Lucy
Actor Lucille Ball as Lucy Ricardo and her husband, actor Desi Arnaz as Ricky Ricardo, in an episode of I Love Lucy from 1954 | CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images

RELATED: Why Lucille Ball ‘Failed on Broadway’ on the Height of Her Career

I Love Lucy had simply ended,” the publication defined. “Her marriage had too. The last kiss with Desi fell on the last moment of their last episode. His face in her hair; her blubbering through tears: “You’re supposed to say ‘Cut.’” The remaining clinch. The subsequent day she filed for divorce.”

Afterwards, in a reportedly “tough spot,” Ball determined to observe by way of on a long-held dream: the theater. She selected a present known as Wildcat and began rehearsals.

What was Ball’s new enterprise Wildcat all about? The Times:

The author of Wildcat, N. Richard Nash, had conceived of it as a drama — the story of ‘a woman in dungarees’ who swings right into a Southwestern oil city with goals of placing it wealthy. … Wildcat ‘Wildy’ Jackson, ‘the cat with more bounce to the ounce,’ as [Ball] put it in her autobiography, was the form of ‘rough-talking, and unbelievably energetic’ character she wished to play.

However, the I Love Lucy star met her match with the Broadway present; the rehearsals had been “grueling,” particularly for somebody who didn’t have a lot background in singing and dancing.

Still, Ball will all the time have one factor underneath her belt from her days on I Love Lucy: the facility to have an effect on a complete nations’ timing of their toilet breaks.

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