Tammy (1965–1966)

Uncle Lucius, the Businessman 

Tammy, Grandpa, and Steven tries to get the Tarleton's cow Beulah to give milk to someone other than Uncle Lucius after Lavinia has him thrown in jail to remove her competition in the county fair.
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Cast

Episode cast overview:
Debbie Watson ... Tammy Tarleton
Denver Pyle ... Grandpa Tarleton
Frank McGrath ... Uncle Lucius
Donald Woods ... John Brent
Jay Sheffield ... Steven Brent
Dorothy Green ... Lavinia Tate
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Storyline

Tammy, Grandpa, and Steven tries to get the Tarleton's cow Beulah to give milk to someone other than Uncle Lucius after Lavinia has him thrown in jail to remove her competition in the county fair.

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Comedy

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Release Date:

11 March 1966 (USA) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Pilot
22 June 2018 | by JordanThomasHallSee all my reviews

The final entry into the series appears very much to be the pilot. Unlike the rest of the episodes it is in black and white with clear character introductions. As a continuation of the preceding episodes it makes little sense with Tammy suddenly appearing to be in a relationship with Mr. Brent's son Steven. Uncle Lucius has an ongoing scheme of selling the Tarleton's prized cow Beulah, who will only give milk to him, to area farmers for $15. When they complain about her not providing milk he buys her back for $5, making $10 on each deal. When a farmer named Mr. Jenkins brings the sheriff, Uncle Lucius is made to come up with $10 to pay the man back. Seeing how Beulah gives milk to Uncle Lucius, Steven says they should enter her into the county fair for "best milking cow". It comes with a $100 prize that would allow money left over for him to start a legitimate dairy herd. His competition will be Lavinia Tate and her cow Alice Blue Gown III. Lavinia pays Mr. Jenkins $30 to say Uncle Lucius hit him, so he'll be thrown in jail and away from the competition. With the fair open, Tammy, Grandpa, and Steven try to find a way get Beulah to give milk.

Reflecting upon the series, "Tammy" had a unique bayou setting despite clearly being in the mold of country sitcoms. Debbie Watson's Tammy had a charming, wholesome character, but as I've seen with other series that were canceled after one season, the star was not a source of comedy in their sitcom. The show really revolved around Dorothy Green's well-played Lavinia Tate and her schemes against Tammy and her family. Denver Pyle's Grandpa had dependable comedic lines much like his Briscoe Darling character from "The Andy Griffith Show". Frank McGrath's Uncle Lucius really fit the part and was a nice, energetic, comedic supporting player until he disappeared only to return at the very end. After a few episodes it seems the producers felt the absence of his character and turned to a younger figure in Dennis Robertson's Cletus. In a backwoods comedy that takes lead from the far superior "The Beverly Hillbillies", you can see parallels to Jethro Bodine as well as Mr. Haney from "Green Acres".

As the series progressed, Tammy's character diminished with less importance. Her screen time was reduced upon the introduction of Cletus' character with his schemes and attempts to romance Gloria. As such, the screen time for Gloria's character steadily increased. The main focus, however, was established early on as being Lavinia's character, and in whole, the series should have been more appropriately titled "Lavinia". Aside from Pyle's country wisecracks, the comedy that worked mainly stemmed from situational misunderstandings. Many episodes were lacking but there's still enough to warrant a look from classic TV/rural comedy fans. However, I'd personally rather re-watch the far superior "The Andy Griffith Show", "The Beverly Hillbillies", "Green Acres", "Petticoat Junction", etc.


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