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46-09-26 August Invoices


Vic is all alone at home and settled down to do some office work. He has two hours to complete it. A nearby street has been shut down (actually 2 of them, making the traffic lighter in front of his house), Sade's away on a car trip with Ruthie Stembottom to Towanda and Rush is at school.

He calls his secretary, Miss Hamersweet and instructs her to hold all of his calls. Peace and quiet.

But things go downhill the moment he hangs up the phone. First, Rush comes home and he does so with a yell.

Instead of being upset, Vic gets Rush to read him off some figures and he imagines this will make his job easier.

But wait! Sade comes home unexpectedly.

After Sade breaks a large gravy boat in the kitchen and Rush falls off of his chair, Uncle Fletcher arrives.

Then the telephone and front door bell ring at the same time.

Just when you think matters can't get worse for Vic, Uncle Fletcher has brought walnuts over and plans to crack them.

Then, Mis' Kessler lets herself in the back door.   She wants to go to Mis' Call's house but a coal truck has stalled out between the Gook and Donahue house and Mis' Kessler can't go that way and Mr. Erickson is putting in a new sidewalk(!) on the other side of the house and there are wooden horses everywhere.  Mis' Kessler eventually asks to go through the Gook living room, disturbing Vic even more.

Uncle Fletcher goes out back to crack nuts.

As soon as the Gooks get rid of Mis' Kessler, Orville Wheenie arrives.  He too wants to get to Virginia Avenue (from the alley) and asks to come through the house.

As soon as Wheenie exits, Mr. Sprawl comes in the back door.

Mis' Kessler has returned the mop she borrowed from Mis' Call and now must re-enter the Gook home to exit out to University Avenue.

As soon as she leaves, Mr. Sprawl then returns looking for a penny he forgot.  He finds it in his mitten.

And as Mr. Sprawl is leaving, Uncle Fletcher returns.  He wants to go out front.  

As soon as he leaves, Sade returns, apologizing for disturbing Vic.  Then a complete stranger shows up and goes right through the house!

Then a woman walks through the house, asking the Gooks for directions to the underwear department.

Then, a strange man whom knows Uncle Fletcher (calls him 'Fletch') and Mis' Kessler  knows wanders in to use the telephone.  Later it is found out that he's Mr. Thompson.  He and Mis' Kessler have a very, very strange conversation.

Then... Uncle Fletcher shows up and almost immediately leaves.

After Mr. Thomspon leaves, another strange man enters the house and then another guy...  After they leave, in comes Mis Kessler again.

Then... Mr. Sprawl shows up again.

And so goes Vic's day.
Not a bad episode, despite all the real characters, of which there are many.  The only thing is : I have a hard time imagining that Mr. Erickson would spend the money to put in a sidewalk. 


+ While he is the school principal, Rush has always referred to Mr. Chinbunny simply as, "Mr. Chinbunny" - until this episode, where he calls him "Principal Chinbunny."

+ Sade said Ruthie's car wouldn't "begin" because the propeller was broke.

+ Sade drops a gravy boat in the kitchen and smashes it. It was a Christmas gift to her from Charlie and Irene (first time either has been mentioned, unless she was referring to the Razorscums; but that's only a guess.)

+ The person ringing the doorbell was a stranger who wanted to know where the Burtons lived. Rush directed him across the street. The Burtons haven't been mentioned before.

+ It's Emerson Avenue (first time mentioned) and Oak streets that are shutdown. Virgina Avenue sits between the two streets, probably one east and one west.

+ Unlike in this episode, Mis' Kessler has no problem in remembering Orville's name.

+ A strange man came inside to use the phone.  Uncle Fletcher and Mis' Kessler both knew him as Mr. Thompson.  He calls his daughter on the telephone.

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  1. One of the weirdest V & S episodes of all time, IMO....the unlikely neighborhood construction projects create a far-fetched scenario in which characters we've never seen or heard of before show up and dominate the show. It's akin to when TV sitcoms would devote an episode to introducing a new character who was about be "spun off" into a new show....although "Mr. Thompson" sure wasn't the most interesting of characters. I've wondered if this wasn't some sort of inside joke perpetrated by Mr. Rhyhmer....that conversation between he and Miz Kessler goes on FOREVER...I can imagine the rest of the cast wandering off-stage for a sandwich while it was going on.

  2. Just listened to this one again, and I have to point out (since I grew up just a couple of blocks south of 414 Virginia Avenue in "Unnamed City, Illinois") that although Emerson and Oak Streets were nearby, they weren't exactly on that block. I lived at 315 E. Emerson--it ran parallel to Virginia, about a quarter mile to the south. And Oak ran perpendicular, but about ten blocks to the west. I'm always intrigued by Rhymer's use of the nearby streets---Kelsey ran parallel to Virginia, a block north of Emerson. I've got the feeling Rhymer just used the ones he felt sounded right, regardless of their actual location....which, come to think about it, is a dumb thing to be writing about, but what the heck. Thanks for indulging me!

  3. I *love* this episode, even if it does violate the idea of only hearing the four main characters. The timing and inflections of Art Van Harvey, Bernadine Flynn, Bill Idelson and Clarence Hartzell are just beautifully expressive, capturing every nuance of the humor -- which gets increasingly outlandish as the episode progresses. The idea of everybody having to stop and make polite small talk with Vic and Rush (who are trapped into politely responding) is hilarious, and made even better when all of those people return from their errands and have to recount where they've just been. One in-joke -- the two fellows who wonder where Art Gilmore is these days. Art Gilmore was, of course, a well-known radio announcer (he also narrated the "Joe McDoakes" comedy movie short subjects as well as most of the Paramount movie trailers of the '40s).