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The Transcontinental

Willy Lump Lump in the Topsy Turvey room in "The Transcontinental"

This weeks episode of The Red Skelton Show is four unrelated sketches – The Transcontinental (spoof of a TV series), It’s Magic (J. Newton Numbskull), The Streets of Laredo (Deadeye, Tide commercial), and Topsy Turvy (Willie Lump Lump)

The TranscontinentalThe Red Skelton Show season 1

The Transcontinental begins with Red trying to fix something from last week — a prop TV camera was supposed to explode, but didn’t. “We don’t think, we know.” “I don’t think we know either.” But it works! And Red brings out Sam, who allegedly built the prop last week. In stocks!


  • I’ve been rather busy this week. I made out my estimate tax, but I didn’t sign my name to it. This estimate tax, I figure if I’ve got to guess how much I’m gonna make, let them guess who’s making it.
  • You know everything in Washington though is mixed up right now. They don’t even know who’s gonna run for president actually and even in fact at the White House they’ve got towels marked “Whose?” and “Hers”.
  • I was down in Washington the other day, and I saw two minks and they were talking to each other. One was wearing shorts, one mink says to the other, “Uh, how come you’re not wearing your mink coat?” The other mink says, “With all the trouble that’s going on in Washington, I should wear a fur coat?”y little boy Richard came in the other day, he was crying like his little heart would break. [as the Mean Little Kid] “I found out that Roy Rogers was married!” I said, “Well, everybody gets married.” He said, “Well, why did he have to marry Trigger, though?”

The Transcontinental

The Transcontinental is a spoof of a TV series at the time, The Continental. In it, Red plays the part of a suave foreign element, romancing his date — the viewer. It’s a funny, punny, comedy prop segment.

It’s Magic

J. Newton Numbskull is an inept magician, with Lucille Knoch as his assistant. It’s a funny bitt, with several funny moments:

  • J. Newton Numbskull trying to hypnotize Lucy — and falling asleep himself!
  • The “traveling papers” that go from Newton’s mouth to Lucy’s — and obviously still in his mouth.
  • Finally, the passe-passe bottles, where a covered bottle and covered glass seem to change places. After a few successful attempts, Lucy “borrows” one of the bottles and has Newton try to do it again! Once he finds out that the second bottle is missing, he tries to move on — but no! Lucy insists! And so, he does it again — successfully! Leaving Lucy flabbergasted.

Skelton’s Film Scrapbook – The Streets of Laredo

Deadeye shoots a romantic rival on “The Streets of Loredo” – with characteristic cheating, of course. He covers the (lively) corpse with a sheet, and the dying Three Fingered Ike asks him to sing the song … But Deadeye can’t, because the sheet’s too dirty! So Lucille Knoch takes it offstage and cleans it with Tide. A happy ending, sort of.

Topsy Turvy

For the first time — but far from the last — Willy Lump Lump‘s suffering wife tries to scare him out of his drinking with the Topsy Turvy room. She hired a carpenter to nail all of the furniture to the room at a 90 degree angle, so when Willy wakes up, he thinks he’s having the mother of all hangovers!

Willy Lump Lump in the Topsy Turvey room in "The Transcontinental"

Cast of characters

  • Red Skelton (Whistling in the Dark) … Self – Host / Willie Lump Lump / J. Newton Numbskull / Deadeye
  • David Rose and His Orchestra … Themselves
  • Lucille Knoch … Magician’s Assistant-Magic Sketch / Dance Hall Norma-Laredo Skit (as Lucy Knoch)
  • Bob LeMond … Self – Announcer (voice)
  • Pat McGeehan … Self – Announcer
  • Shirley Mitchell (I Love Lucy) … Mrs. Lump Lump-Topsy Turvy Sketch
  • Gil Perkins (Batman – The Movie) … Three-Fingered Ike-Laredo Skit / Mr. Swenson-Topsy Turvy Sketch