Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Tuesday, January 24, 2023


The People's Choice was an NBC sitcom starring former child star Jackie Cooper.  It ran from October 6, 1955 to September 25, 1958 for 104 episodes.

Cooper plays Socrates "Sock" Miller, a former Korean War vet, ornithoplogist, and budding politician who live with his Aunt Augusta (Margaret Irving) and his beagle Cleo in a trailer park in New City, California.  One theme that runs through several of the episodes is the common belief that trailer park residents are somehow a lower class of people because of where they live.  Thi may be why the town's mayor, John Peoples (Paul Maxey), does not approve of Sock, who has begun dating his daughter Mandy (Patricia Breslin).

Scok is a newly-elected member of the City Council and is studying on his own to be a lawyer.  (One did not need a law school degree to take the bar exam.)  Scok and Mandy both assume that her father's disapproval would disappear once Sock passed the bar and became a lawyer.  Confiodent that he would pass the bar, the pair elope to Las Vegas and get secretly married the day before the exam.  On the drive back, however, Sock gets stopped for a traffic violation and spends the night in jail and misses the bar exam.  The newlyweds decide to keep their marriage a secret from mher father until Sock can take the exam and pass it.  This sets the theme for the first season.

The breakaway star of the show was Cleo, the beagle.  She (voiced by Masry Jane Croft) would speak to the audience with sidecracks.  During the show's run, the popularity of the breed increased significantly.

"An Adventure of Sock" takes full advantage of Cleo's popularity.  In it, Cleo relates how she joined the Miller family and how Sock almost married the wrong woman when he retuirned from the army.  The episode was directed by Peter Tewksbury and written by Alan Lipscott and Bob Fisher.


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