By Yvonne Villarreal Los Angeles Times
There was never any doubt that “I Love Lucy” was full of color. But for those whose imaginations need some help, CBS will air in December a one-hour special featuring two newly colorized classic episodes of the 1950s series.
The “I Love Lucy Christmas Special” will consist of the seldom seen “Christmas Episode” and the grape-stomping classic “Lucy’s Italian Movie,” airing at 8 p.m. Dec. 20.
The show — which featured Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz as Lucy and Ricky Ricardo, and Vivian Vance and William Frawley as the Ricardos’ friends and landlords, Ethel and Fred Mertz — is celebrating its 62nd anniversary.
The holiday episode, which has the Ricardos and Mertzes reminiscing while decorating a Christmas tree, was first broadcast in December 1956 and went into hiding, failing to be included in the series’ long history of repeats while in syndication. It was rediscovered in 1989, with select airings since then.
“Lucy’s Italian Movie” was originally broadcast in March 1956 and became an instant classic.
The episode finds the Ricardos and Mertzes in Rome, where Lucy is invited by a famous Italian film director to appear in his next picture, “Bitter Grapes.” And Lucy does what Lucy does: She gets in a pickle.