"Mertz and Kurtz"
Season 4, Episode 5
#102 in Series
Network: CBS-TV
Air date: October 11, 1954
Written by: Bob Carroll Jr.
Madelyn Pugh
Jess Oppenheimer
Directed by: William Asher
Production code: 4-5 / 102
Episode guide
IMDB Mertz and Kurtz
Episode chronology
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"Mr. and Mrs. TV Show" "Ricky's Movie Offer"

Mertz and Kurtz was the 102nd overall episode of I Love Lucy, also the 5th epidsode in Season four of the series. The episode, was directed by William Asher, originally aired on CBS-TV on October 11, 1954.


To help Fred impress his ex-vaudeville partner, Barney Kurtz (Charles Winninger), Lucy agrees to pose as the Mertzes' maid.


The Mertzes try and pretend they're rich when Fred's old vaudeville partner, Barney Kurtz, comes to visit. After the Mertzes tell the truth about how they're not really rich, Barney also confesses that he's been lying about being rich. The problem is that Barney's grandson is coming to visit, thinking that his grandfather is a big star. So, to help Barney save face, the Mertzes, the Ricardos, and Barney perform in an act at the Tropicana, with the grandson being the honored guest.


  • Fred's old vaudeville partner is now named Barney Kurtz. He was named Ted Kurtz in "The Ballet." Perhaps the writers changed his name, thinking that it was too unrealistic for partners to have perfectly rhyming names?
  • While Lucy pretends to be the Mertzes' maid, she is called Bessie.
  • At dinner, Ethel talks about an actress named Venus Jones, the name of Vivian Vance's sister in real life.
  • Desi practiced all week lifting weights to make his biceps visibly pop for the lifeguard scene.
  • In the second episode of the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, Lucy asks Ethel to be her maid (and Fred to be her butler) when Tallulah Bankhead comes for dinner. Ethel reacts to this request by being highly offended, as if she can't believe Lucy would ever ask this of her. But Ethel seems to forget that she asked Lucy to be HER maid when Barney came to town!


Guest starringEdit

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