Sanford and Son (1972–1977)
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A Guest in the Yard 

Fred and Lamont discover that no good deed goes unpunished when the homeless man they help plays the Sanfords for suckers, resisting their every effort to throw him out.


Jack Shea


Ilunga Adell, Ray Galton ("Steptoe and Son" created by) | 1 more credit »

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Episode cast overview:
Redd Foxx ... Fred G. Sanford
Demond Wilson ... Lamont Sanford
Liam Dunn ... Gus
Davis Roberts ... Dr. Caldwell


While trying to move an old bathtub in the yard Fred and Lamont discover an old hobo sleeping in it. Fred demands that he get off the property, but Lamont's heart is softened when the man, named Gus, claims that he is going to kill himself. After Lamont goes to work, the man drives Fred crazy by seeming to always be peering in the window. After giving Gus a glass of water and a sweet roll, Fred dismisses him. When Lamont comes back home for lunch, he and Fred discover once again that Gus is sleeping in the bathtub. This time, Lamont's heart is not softened and he insists that Gus leave. While being evicted the man falls down and claims to be paralyzed, threatening to sue. Fred and Lamont put the man on the couch and Fred tries several tricks to prove that the man is faking. Finally, he decides that he should keep feeding him beer until Gus has to urinate and HAS to get up. He and Lamont set a trap, but Gus runs out of the house shoving Fred to the floor. The next day when Fred and ... Written by Jerry Roberts

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Release Date:

8 December 1972 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Tandem Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Gus mentions that Nixon said he would bring us together. He is referring to a statement that the President made during his inauguration. See more »


Lamont Sanford: Hey, now that's blackmail!
Fred Sanford: No, that's whitemail!
See more »


It Must Be Jelly ('Cause Jam Don't Shake Like That)
Music and Lyrics by Glenn Miller
Performed by Redd Foxx
See more »

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User Reviews

Liam Dunn and Davis Roberts
17 December 2016 | by kevinolzakSee all my reviews

"A Guest in the Yard" opens with Sanford and Son ready to ship an old bathtub to the dumpster, only to find a white occupant snoring inside. Fred would like to be rid of the freeloader, Gus (Liam Dunn), but tenderhearted Lamont allows him two more hours of rest. Instead of sleeping in the tub, his eyes follow Fred and his breakfast from the front door to the back, requesting a glass of water and getting his hands on Fred's prized Danish: "you can have it now!" "what are my chances of having lunch with you, Mr. Sanford?" "slim and none, see now look, you spent the night here, you had your continental breakfast, now it's check out time!" Before long Gus is again sleeping in the tub, and in trying to evict him Fred inadvertently knocks him down, after which he claims to be paralyzed below the waist. Threatened by a possible lawsuit, Fred brings in Dr. Caldwell (Davis Roberts, introduced in "Whiplash," later seen in "Lamont, Is That You?") to see if he can help, still coughing and wheezing: "I've gotta give it up or they gonna kill me" "yeah them cigarettes will do it" "no, I'm taking about drivin' on the freeway!" This time it's Gus who questions his qualifications: "are you a doctor?" "what day is this?" "Friday, what's that got to do with it?" "because on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I'm a doctor, the other days I work in the post office!" Not being a neurologist Dr. Caldwell can do nothing to allay Fred's fears: "is he gonna be all right or is he gonna be crippled?" "I don't know" "are you sure this ain't the day you're supposed to be at the post office?" "do you have any idea how many doctors there are in this country honest enough to say they don't know?" "how many?" "I don't know!" The solution turns out to be so simple that Lamont wonders why he didn't think of it before his father did: "cause you ain't simple minded like me!" Davis Roberts again proves uproarious, while Liam Dunn is perfectly cast to obnoxious type.

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