TV classics: My Little Margie
USA 1952-55, 4 seasons, 126 episodes, approximately 25 minutes each, CBS and NBC, black & white. Created by: Frank Fox, Theme music composer: Alexander Lazlo. Cast: Gale Storm, Charles Farrell
Plot summary: 21-year-old Margie lives with her widowed father Verne Albright. With their darling quirks and tics, they are a family like none other.
Review: My Little Margie was a sitcom that started as a summer replacement for I Love Lucy and lasted for four full seasons on its own merit, switching channels in its third year from CBS to NBC. Circling around twenty-two-year-old Margie and her life with her widowed father, the show introduced a rather unusual family to the screen. Back in the 50s, families were more traditionally depicted with a mother, father and their two or three children; well-known examples surely are The Donna Reed Show or Father Knows Best.
My Little Margie featured thirty-year-old Gale Storm as Margie who did her best at giving convincing performances in this screwball-esque show. She was supported by an equally committed Charles Farrell whose Verne Albright was often brought to the brink of sanity by his on-screen daughter and her many mishaps, oddities and darling endeavors. The main characters sometimes teamed up with guest stars such as Gertrude Hoffmann’s Mrs. Odetts, an Ethel-Mirth-inspired sidekick to Margie, or Verne’s boss Mr. Honeywell played by Clarence Kolb. Some episodes also included Margie’s boyfriend Freddy Wilson (Don Hayden) Verne’s many attempts at finding himself a new wife until he finally found Roberta (Hillary Brooke).
All in all, the show was pure entertainment: lovely to watch and relax to for children and their parents alike. Not unlike Life With Elizabeth, Susie or I Married Joan, the show has found a new audience since selected episodes have been released on DVD or channels like youtube. With the rights now in the public domain, it would be fantastic to see more episodes published for old as well as new fans to enjoy. My Little Margie may soon be celebrating its sixtieth birthday but for everyone who’s interested in cultural history it is still a lot of fun to watch.