#1LinerWeds From “The Dick Van Dyke Show”

What, and miss the look on your face?

The longest laugh The Dick Van Dyke Show ever received was for this scene, from the first episode of the show’s third season (September 25, 1963). In this show, Rob Petrie (Van Dyke) is telling the story of how he thought he and Laura (Mary Tyler Moore) had come home from the hospital after the birth of their son with the wrong baby. He thought a couple named Peters had gotten their child by mistake, because there had been several times in the hospital where items intended for Mrs. Petrie had gone to Mrs. Peters and vice versa. Finally, Rob calls Mr. Peters and convinces him and his wife to come over so they could straighten things out.

Unfortunately, the clip ends before Rob asks Mr. Peters (played by Greg Morris, who later was in Mission: Impossible and Vega$) “Why didn’t you tell me?” After that, Mr. Peters delivers the line.

The audience laughed so long that most of the laughter had to be edited out of the show.

This clip is from a show called TV’s Unforgettable Moments and features an interview with Carl Reiner, the producer of the show, talking about the scene and initial misgivings about airing it.

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23 thoughts on “#1LinerWeds From “The Dick Van Dyke Show”

    1. Another great casting decision. You actually got the idea that they were really married. That was a wonderful show. All those actors were at the top of their game and knew how to be funny.

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  1. Oh my stars! LOL. I really miss these old shows. My friend and I were just talking the other day about how sitcoms used to actually be funny. These days, most of them are just raunchy.


    1. I think it’s just been in the last twenty years or so that the art of the sitcom has eroded. The advent of 24/365 television and its constant demands for quantity has a lot to do with that, and the gradual coarsening of the material has accelerated the decline. I recognize that the media experts that are in charge of TV these days really don’t care about anyone over the age of 49 and that the programming reflects that, but even so, you’d think there’d be SOMETHING to watch. Well, there is: MeTV, Antenna TV, Cozi TV and the other nostalgia channels.


  2. Hi John – love those sorts of shows – and used to watch DvD and MTM when they came on … wonderful to see – cheers Hilary


    1. All those were great entertainment. They’re shows you remember, and the mention of the name reminds you of episodes that made you laugh. Might have been fifty years since you saw the show, but you can remember it clearly as if you just saw it.


  3. This is very funny! I love Van Dyke’s reaction and this is brilliant because it’s a time of great civil unrest and I just felt they did this brilliantly. This is hilarious but at the same time, you realize she is in the same hospital or even room as the African American lady plus nothing is brought out directly that it should be some huge issue. Perfect.


    1. It was a classic, like “I Love Lucy” or “Leave It To Beaver.” They were clean and funny, and could take on social issues like this without offending people.


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