Of all of Vincent Price’s many guest appearances on US comedy shows, I’ve always loved his turns on The Carol Burnett Show, the hilarious variety sketch show that also starred Harvey Korman, Vicki Lawrence, Lyle Waggoner, and Tim Conway, and which ran for 278 episodes on CBS from 11 September 1967 to 29 March 1978.
It was on the 19th episode of series seven, which screened on 9 February 1974, that Vincent had his third stint on the show (the others being 9 February 1972 (S5 E18), 22 November 1972 (S6 E11) and 4 January 1975 (S8 E14).
First up, Vincent gives a humourous tribute to Abraham Lincoln commemorating the 165th anniversary of his birth, and takes the opportunity of highlighting the Declaration of American Independence’s most important phrase that, ‘All men are created equal… and have inalienable rights to… life, liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness’ – something we so desperately need to remember these days (you can see that from 19:51 in the video below).
This followed by a farcical sketch in which Carol plays a hotel switchboard operator listening in on the calls of various patrons including Vincent and the show’s other guest star Joel Grey, as well as Lyle and Vicki. Vincent then robs poor old Harvey of his clothes in a spy spoof, before showing off his baritone voice in a Commedia Dell’Arte in which Joel and Carol play Punch and Judy dolls.
Catch the entire episode here… Plus, a couple of other classic sketches from the official Carol Burnett YouTube Channel.