Season: 4 (The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour)
Guest(s): The Supremes, Merv Griffin, 1973 Miss World (Marjorie Wallace), Carol Lawrence
CBS air date: Date: January 23, 1974
Also aired: TV Land
Much of the confusion surrounding the ordering of the final 11 episodes had to do with episode #56 (from December 12, 1973 which was missing from the episode guides...except for the weekly TV Guide and thanks again to Cher scholar Jay for figuring that out) and this episode #61 which was listed as both #60 and 61 in one of the more extensive guides. This was in fact a single episode, #61. One guide even surmises that #60 might have been cancelled and that the air date is unknown. Robert Goulet has been listed as a guest but he is not in this episode.
Subway Intro: Chastity is riding the train while Ted Zeigler tries to tell an off-color joke to a priest. The Supremes scold him.
Opening Song: “I Couldn't Live Without Your Love” (Video)
Cover of Petula Clark (1966)
They're wearing complimentary shades of pink. Cher wears a multi-colored sash. Sonny is wearing a lot of jewelry and chest hair. Cher's neckline plunges as well. She's wearing big, gold hoops.
Breakout 2: 20th Century Bono Productions produces "The Sonny Bono Story." There are short jokes, singing jokes. There's a poster in the back of Sonny in a muscle pose (shirtless alert).Miss World compares Sonny's voice to a hog caller.
Banter: They shake hands. Cher's earring falls when she flips her hair. They tell a story about a new dog and all the people who come to visit the dog and that fact that he's always in heat. Cher says he must be Italian and does more hair flipping.
- Sonny & Cher are on a deserted island.
- Merv Griffin is a cook in the Navy. There's a gay joke. Sonny shirtless alert.
- Merv Griffin is in a massage parlor which is really an ice cream parlor.
At the Lauderette: Olivia is perpetually folding huge underwear in these. She cracks up when they talk about game shows, sex games, gay bachelors on The Dating Game and dressing up for The Price is Right.
Guest Spot: The Supremes sing "All I Want" (cover of Joni Mitchell, 1971) (Video)
The Supremes have shed Diana Ross by now...and good dancing. Their uptempo version of this just feels off.
Cultural Spot: The elderly parents in the balcony introduce this spot. I've starred "Westward Ho the Pizzas," an opera-western with Italians in the old west (which is supposed to sound humorously absurd but there were actually plenty of Italians and other Europeans in the story of U.S. westward expansion). They sing "That's Amore." Merv is the sheriff (and he can sing). Cher, wearing a black halter outfit, is Rita Palazzi, the Gunslinger, "the fastest hips in the west." She's a "gunslinging hussy" according to Merv. Cher slings guns at a window. Carol Lawrence plays the bar maid Lily Capri. Sonny plays a stranger, Andy Pasta, a preacher. He sorts out the town's issues with cross-dressing. Sonny cracks up during the skit.
Sonny's Pizza: The cooks don't want to eat the pizza. Merv Griffin plays a friend of Sonny's. Rosa doesn't like him.
Solo: "By Myself" (Video)
Jazz Standard from "Between the Devil" (1937) and Judy Garland (1957)
This is also a song from Cher's 1973 Bittersweet White Light album but this is an alternate contemporary take on the song. Cher sports a great braided ponytail and a sparkling black dress in front of a yellow light. She does a great hand-curl move as she sings "just like a bird on the wing." There's also a slow lip lick close up at the end. I've starred this. Good rendition.
Skit: Dr. Bono's Scientific Stuff on Television Show. Simamese Twins are connected at the nose.
IGUB: Chastity and Cher wear matching outfits. Turns out Cher has a bad cold and can't sing. Sonny asks Chastity "Can you sing on key?" and Chastity replies "No, I sing like you do." There's a joke about Sonny's mother. Chastity sings "they say we're young and we don't care" and loses the thread after "we won't find out until...what?"
According to episode guides there might have been a spot with Robert Goulet singing "Summer Green." And there's a solo with Cher listed singing "Working Together" and Sonny & Cher in concert singing "You're Sixteen," both of which show up again in the episode #63 listing.
Highlights: The western opera, Cher singing "By Myself."