"The Club Election"
Season 2, Episode 12
#47 in Series
Network: CBS-TV
Air date: February 16, 1953
Written by: Bob Carroll Jr.
Madelyn Davis
Jess Oppenheimer
Directed by: William Asher
Production code: 2-11 / 047
Episode guide
IMDB The Club Election
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"The Inferiority Complex" "The Black Eye"

The Club Election was the 47th episode of I Love Lucy, also the 12th episode aired in Season 2 of the series. The episode, was directed by William Asher, aired on CBS-TV on February 16, 1953.


It's Lucy versus Ethel for President of the Wednesday Afternoon Fine Arts League.


It's time for the Wednesday Afternoon Fine Arts League to nominate members for officer positions. Lucy is confident that she will get picked for some job, she's just so popular and wonderful. She even has a dreamy ne cashmere sweater and bag to show it. When it comes down to the office of president, Lucy hasn't been nominated for anything yet, but she's sure that the current president is talking about her when listing off the reasons why the next-in-line president is perfect for the job. When the current president asks to shake the hand of the next leader, Lucy extends her hand, thinking she'll be picked. But it's Ethel's hand who gets shaken.

Lucy is desperate. She has to act now. So, she asks "Lillian" Appleby to "caucus" with her in the kitchen. Shortly after, "Lillian" emerges from the kitchen wearing Lucy's new cashmere sweater. To no one's surprise, "Lillian" asks to nominate Lucy for the office of president. Ethel glares at Lucy, who merely tries to reason her underhanded act by saying that it's the democratic way to have two candidates for presidents.

Lucy and Ethel are hard at work on the campaign trail. They tell each other their election progress the next time the Ricardos and the Mertzes are scheduled to play bridge together. Discussing one another's campaign slogans reveal that Lucy has made one saying "Nertz to Mertz," and Ethel has made one calling Lucy "a deadhead, or should I say 'dyed head'." Lucy and Ethel start shouting at each other and become determined to make even more slanderous posters.

Lucy bribes "Lillian" Appleby once again, this time with her new bag, to help her figure out how many votes she and Ethel have each. At the present moment, Lucy and Ethel are tied, with 6 votes each. The deciding vote is going to come down to the brand-new club member, Ruth Knickerbocker. Lucy and Ethel begin showering Ruth with lavish dinners and activities, each trying to sway Ruth's vote in their favor.

Fred and Ricky decide to also get in on swaying Ruth's decision. But Fred wants Lucy to win the election, and Ricky wants Ethel to win. Neither man wants the aggravation that will surely come along with their wife being head of a club. Fred invites Mrs. Knickerbocker to the Tropicana, and Ricky sings to her at her table. In enter Lucy and Ethel, announcing that they are now co-presidents, since the vote was a tie. Ruth Knickerbocker couldn't come to the election, because she is sick in bed from all the rich food Lucy and Ethel have been serving her. Ricky protests, saying that Ruth is right beside him. Lucy explains that the woman at the table isn't RUTH Knickerbocker, but Ruth's mother-in-law.


  • This is the first appearance of Marion Strong and "Lillian" Appleby. The next appearance of Marion Strong will be played by Shirley Mitchell, who is the one best remembered for the role. Actress Doris Singleton says that Lucy was the one who changed her character's name from Lillian to Carolyn. Lucy didn't like the sound of Lillian for some reason. She suggested Doris use her real first name, but Doris didn't like that idea. So, Lucy just came up with Carolyn and Charlie on the spot. Interestingly, the script originally called for the character's name to be "Carolyn Applegate," but Lucy changed all of the club members' names to those of people she knew. "Lillian Appleby" was Lucy's favorite elementary school teacher. But she favored "Carolyn" in the end for whatever reason, and Lucy is the only person in the episode to address Mrs. Appleby as "Carolyn," not "Lillian."
  • Besides Ethel (and, later, Lucy) being nominated for club president, "Lillian" Appleby is nominated/elected secretary, Grace Munson is nominated/elected treasurer, and Marion Strong is nominated/elected vice president.
  • This is the first appearance of Pauline Lopus. The actress who played her will appear as bridge player Dorothy the next time she's on the show (episode #62).
  • The old club president (the one who hands the presidency over to Ethel) remains nameless in this episode.
  • The mention of the '52 presidential caucus being televised is one of the few times modern history/politics/events is featured on the show.


  • Lucille Ball ... as Lucy Ricardo
  • Desi Arnaz ... as Ricky Ricardo
  • Vivian Vance ... as Ethel Mertz
  • William Frawley ... as Fred Mertz

Guest starringEdit