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Finding Aid for the Collection of Radio and Television Scripts for the Series Our Miss Brooks, 1950-1956
60  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • History
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms
  • Related Material

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Collection of Radio and Television Scripts for the Series Our Miss Brooks,
    Date (inclusive): 1950-1956
    Collection number: 60
    Extent: 9 boxes (4.0 linear ft.)
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Department of Special Collections.
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
    Abstract: Our Miss Brooks started on radio in 1948 and was successfully transferred to television beginning in 1952 (it ran on both media, with largely the same cast, for several months in 1952). The series ended in 1956. The program revolved around Connie Brooks, an English teacher at Madison High School. Collection consists of radio and television scripts for the series.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    Copyright has not been assigned to the Performing Arts Special Collections, UCLA. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Arts Special Collections Librarian. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Performing Arts Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

    Restrictions on Access

    COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Advance notice required for access.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Collection of Radio and Television Scripts for the Series Our Miss Brooks (Collection 60). Performing Arts Special Collections, University of California, Los Angeles.

    History

    Beginning on radio in 1948, Our Miss Brooks was successfully transferred to television beginning in 1952 (it ran on both media, with largely the same cast, for several months in 1952). Between gentle wisecracks, Miss Brooks doted on nerdish student Walter Denton, and frequently locked horns with crusty, cranky principal Mr. Conklin. Many of the program's episodes, however, revolved around Miss Brook's unrequited desire for Philip Boynton, the school's biology teacher.
    The program had enjoyed good ratings on radio and only enlarged its audience when it moved to TV. And while some professional educators criticized the series, others celebrated Miss Brooks and Eve Arden's work: she got teaching job offers, fan letters from educators, was made an honorary member of the National Education Association and, in 1952, was given an award from the Alumni Association of the Teachers College of Connecticut for "humanizing the American Teacher." Said Arden of her on-screen alter ego: "I tried to play Miss Brooks as a loving person who cared about the kids and kept trying to keep them out of trouble, but kept getting herself in trouble."
    Obviously, Miss Brooks encountered enough trouble to sustain the series for over 150 episodes, but, unlike many other female comics on TV at that time, Miss Brooks' forte was not the wild antics that were the norm of Lucy or the lopsided logic that was the domain of Gracie Allen. Instead, Miss Brooks humor was achieved by her own sharp, observing wit and by her centered presence in the midst of a group of eccentric supporting players--dimwitted, squeaky-voiced student Walter, pompous Conklin, and the others. Miss Brooks was always the source of the jokes, not the butt of them.
    In 1955, ratings were beginning to wane, and the series was overhauled. Miss Brooks and Mr. Conklin were moved out of Madison High to Mrs. Nestor's Private Elementary School. For a time there was no Mr. Boynton for whom Miss Brooks would pine, but there was a muscle-bound PE teacher, Mr. Talbot, who longed for Miss Brooks. This was an important turnabout in the overall premise of the show: now Miss Brooks was the pursued rather than the pursuer. (Mr. Boynton did turn up again in early 1956 just in time for the series to be canceled; in a film version of the series released by Warner Brothers in 1956, Miss Brooks and Mr. Boynton finally did tie the knot and presumably lived happily ever after.) (From The Museum of Broadcast Communications Encyclopedia of Television http://www.museum.tv)

    Scope and Content

    Collection consists of radio and television scripts for the series Our Miss Brooks. Includes radio scripts (April 1950-April 1956, numbers 82-336 with some gaps) and television scripts (February 1952-April 1955, numbers 1-100).

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Our Miss Brooks (Television program). Our Miss Brooks (Radio program).
    Television writers, United States--Archival resources.
    Television scripts.
    Radio scripts.

    Related Material

    Al Lewis Radio and Television Scripts (Collection 136). Available at Performing Arts Special Collections, UCLA.