Love and Marriage in Prime Time

Love and Marriage in Prime Time: I Love Lucy
CBS Photo Archive / Getty Images

I Love Lucy: The Original
Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz had been married for 11 years before creating I Love Lucy in 1951. Playing on their history, the sitcom incorporated small details from the couple's real life into its structure, blurring the lines between Ricky and Desi, Lucy and Lucille. In 1960, after three tumultuous seasons of their post–I Love Lucy variety show The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, the couple divorced, a fate that has befallen every husband-and-wife television team since.

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