Including Frank Nelson along with the writers, they talk about the work flow of how the script writing for the show progressed.
- Monday: off,
- Tuseday: Develop a first draft over the phone with a general plot premise.
- Wednesday and Thursday: Two teams assigned by Jack work seperately, on their plots.
- Friday: Present scripts to jack.
- Saturday: Meet to edit script, and a dress rehearsal.
- Sunday: On the air. When the show finished on Sunday, they rarely knew what next week’s script would be.
The writers and Frank Nelson discuss various long running gags, and how they often happened by accident. Once made, Jack and his writers would capatalize on the mishap and write in last minute adlibs, carry the joke over for a few shows, or even revive a joke from a previous season. Listen to see what the writers consider the longest laugh. It actually may not be the longest, but the most memorable. Learn how the famous responce to the line, “Your money or your life,” came to be. Another accident, or a stroke of genius?
Though Jack’s on air personality and home are more fictional than real, there’s still a certain amount of consistency to it all. A visualization of Jack’s fictional neighborhood is demonstrated.
There’s a pause, and the topic briefly shifts to something called, “The Bridge is Up Club”. Willard Waterman and others tell where the name of the club came from. It involves the high pressure demands of radio announcers, and voice actors who might have worked on several differnt shows,and for various networks, all at the same time. Waterman and the others shed a little light on the close knit relationships formed between themselves as they helped each other with jobs.
Back on the topic of the writers, a clip is shared from The Jack benny program, from March 20, 1948, the famous robbery scene, ‘your money or your life.’ The writers share a few thoughts on the story arc that the line came from. More clips are presented to show how Jack dealt with the moment in the show, embellishing his exploits of bravery at each retelling. Credit is given to Eddie Mar as the burglar, and Mel Blanc for his part as the gang member.
The longest laugh is revisited, and a clip is presented. From April 25, 1948, it’s the one with Dorothy Kirsten,, well known opera singer. After she talks with Don about music, a conversation full of technical jargon related to opera is shared between Don and Dorothy. Jack tries to get in a word only to be cut off by Mary. The episode ends with a bonus. Dorothy Kirsten is joined by the Sportsmen for a classic commercial for Lucky Strikes.