You know when you find something so silly, so ridiculous, and so you-had-to-be-there that it’s not really funny to anyone else but you? This episode, while for the most part not a knee-slapper gains “must-see” merit on one line and one line alone. Probably one of the most absurd, non-sensical lines ever written for “Bewitched”. So childish, so immature, so infantile so… well…so dumb, it’s funny. And when Elizabeth Montgomery delivers such a line with all sincerity – it’s hands-down one of the best laugh-out-loud laughs you’ll get out of all the episodes ever made. *

Samantha contracts Venetian Verbal Virus (how is never explained) and she’s talking inexplicably in rhyme. Or shall we say verse? No… rhyme. In fact, NURSERY RHYME would be more spot on. Now even though this episode is entitled “Samantha the Bard”, (a reference to Shakespeare and the device of dialogue being spoken in verse) “Bewitched” writer Richard Baer’s talents for writing verse seems, well…better suited for the “Farmer in the Dell” crowd rather than “The Merchant of Venice” set.

With jingles and rhymes ranging from cute (“He’s on an Alp, when I need halp”) to desperate (“I think I orta put the flowers in some worta”) our dear Samanser (in need of a logical answer) must endure rhyming “miracle” with “dearacle” and “who me?” with “boop-doop-di-dee”. (Larry: “Boop-doop-di-dee?!?!”)

But it’s all in good fun. Gladys and Abner make a nice appearance with even Abner getting in on the bad rhyming act. Endora has a small but campy part, especially when she contracts the illness (much to Darrin’s delight!) and Liz looks great as usual (especially in the same ski outfit Aggie wears only a scene earlier!) Let the kid in you come out and watch this episode through a six year old’s eyes. You’ll really enjoy it, I promise. And remember, it’s all worth it for that one line alone.

2nd FAVE QUOTE: Upon hearing that mortals can’t get Venetian Verbal Virus, Darrin smugly exclaims “Let’s hear it for mortals!”

LOOK FOR: In the very last fade out of episode when Samantha goes to kiss the billy goat, the billy goat actually tries to kiss her back.

* (What’s the line, you ask? Only the six year old in you can decide whichever one he thinks it is. My six year old is still laughing but afraid to tell anyone – he doesn’t want to get beat up on the playground at recess again.)

©Review Copyright 2003 by SCOTT VIETS

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