Friday, September 4, 2015

Acres and Acres

They're two of radio and TV's most recognizable character actors, but I'd be willing to bet many of you aren't familiar with the show they're performing here. Gale Gordon and Bea Benaderet played the starring roles in CBS' radio comedy Granby's Green Acres in the summer of 1950. The comedy was not picked up for a regular season run, and there it ended. At least, it ended until nearly 15 years later, when writer/producer Jay Sommers revived the concept for television, where Green Acres became much more successful.       

Gordon and Benaderet, of course, moved smoothly from their success as radio performers to being equally in demand on television. In fact, it was the popularity of Petticoat Junction, starring Benaderet, that prompted CBS to ask for another show from executive producer Paul Henning. Busy with Junction and The Beverly Hillbillies, he sought the help of Sommers, and together they concocted the idea of placing Green Acres in Hooterville.

Incidentally, Granby's Green Acres was followed on the CBS schedule that summer by Leave It to Joan, starring none other than our pal Joan Davis. See how neatly I did that?


  1. Of course, the idea for this show originally came from the 1947 film, The Egg and I. (

  2. There's certainly a similarity, no question about that. Sommers said he spent time as a kid on his stepfather's farm, which wasn't very successful, and was inspired by that experience.

  3. did you know that jack bannon, once of tv's "lou grant" is bea's son?
    of course you did.