Season: 3 (The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour)
Guest: Jimmy Durante, Gilbert O’Sullivan
CBS air date: October 13, 1972
Also aired: TVLand
Full Episode Index
Opening Song: “There’s a Kind of Hush” (Video)
Cover of Herman’s Hermits (1967)
I loved this song as a kid. I would have said it was in my top 5, along with “Tie a Yellow Ribbon.” Sonny and Cher are talking and laughing about something private when they come out. Cher is in a simple white gown (a white version of her pink generic doll dress) and Sonny’s in a white shirt and pants with a black sparkly sweater vest. She has long red nails. They are very playful. Her hair looks great and it looks like she has concho silver earrings. They sing the chorus as “there’s a kind of a hush” instead of “there’s a kind of hush.”
Banter: They talk about Cher “moves” and Sonny’s friends being the Seven Dwarfs (short joke). Cher has her hand on her hip. There’s a Sinatra joke, a Sonny’s mother joke. Sonny calls Cher a beautiful talented superstar, loved, revered and adored. I don’t know if he tells a nose joke or a skinny joke, but again he walks into audience and makes a funny jump back on stage. You see some great big wigs in the audience worn by the middle-aged women there.
Raggedy Sonny & Cher: Jimmy Durante plays the Gingerbread man. There’s a Green Giant penis joke. Cher is knitting a pizza and a soda. Durante says “that’s the way the cookie crumbles” and then “I don’t like ‘em folks, I just say ‘em” we suppose this is regarding the bad jokes. There’s a prop issue in the skit.
Solo: “Why Was I Born” (Video)
Cover of Kern & Hammerstein for Sweet Adeline (1929)
Torch song covered by Billie Holiday, Lena Horne, Frank Sinatra, Vic Damone, Dorothy Lamour, Ella Fitzgerald, Dinah Washington, Sonny Rollins and Bob Dylan. Cher is wearing a black halter top and pants and curly wig. This is a much slower version. She sings it well and hangs her hand over her belly button. The songs seems heartfelt. The pantsuit looks deceivingly see through. Great closeup.
Guest Spot: Cher in her bobbed wig with barret (which I guess was meant for introducing guests) talks about Gilbert’s terrific name. There’s a Forest Lawn cemetery joke and a nose joke. There’s a weird uncomfortable Uncle moment. They introduce Gilbert O’Sullivan who sings “Clair”
Skit: Cher and Jimmy Durante sing about their noses. Their profiles are on a glitter board. This is cool! Wish it was online.
Cartoon: Sonny & Cher sing “The Candy Man” (Video)
Cover of song from Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)
Cher sings “wishes” and “dishes” very Cher-like. I like the interracial harmony theme the cartoon ads to the song toward the end.
Concert: “Up on Cripple Creek”
Cover of The Band (1969)
Cher’s wearing a great afro ponytail. Sonny & Cher are in brown and gold. Cher’s wearing lots of makeup and great hoops.
VAMP: Cher’s in her blood-red dress with the pin and the curly wig.
- Priscilla Mullins must choose between pilgrims John Alden (Durante) and Miles Standish (Sonny). Someone, according to my notes, says “my physical metabolism quivers” and the term “cook your goose” is made as a sexual innuendo. There’s also a nose joke.
- Martha Washington and George Washington. Martha is upset George (Durante) is spending too much time with Ben Franklin (Sonny). There’s a tea party joke. Cher and Durante fake kiss. There’s a Yankees vs. Dodgers joke. Cher gives Sonny a noogie.
IGUB: They mention that Gilbert O’Sullivan came all the way from England. Jimmy Durante comes onstage and touches noses with Chastity. He says “Goodnight Mrs. Calabash” as he does. Chastity looks woozy.
My bootleg is missing the Anna & King of Jiam segment from VAMP.
Highlights: Cher wears an afro ponytail (cultural representation or appropriation). Producer Chris Bearde is starting to appear in the credits mysteriously as one word, Chrisbearde.