Season Four - September 1958 to June 1959

 

Production Credits

 

Filmed at the DuMont Studios, NY by Kenco Films, Inc. for CBS Television

 

Produced by Edward J Montagne

 Staged by Aaron Ruben

Directed by Al De Caprio & Aaron Ruben

Assistant Direction by Peter Scoppa

Photographed by William J. Miller

Supervised by Edward J.Montagne

Edited by Ray Sandiford

Art Direction by Richard Jackson

Additional Art Direction by Robert Rowe Paddock

Make-Up by Bob Kelly

Wardrobe by William Griffin

 

Production Manager - M. Clay Adams

Music by John Strauss

Additional Music by Hank Sylvern

Recording Engineer - James Shields

Assistant to producer - Kevin Pynes

Technical Advisor - George Kennedy

Settings by Jack Landau

 

Writing Supervisor - Billy Friedberg

 

Writers - Neil Simon, Terry Ryan, Billy Friedberg, Phil Sharp, Coleman Jacoby and Arnie Rosen

 

Credits Announcer: Bern Bennett

 

Cast

 

Phil Silvers as Master Sergeant Ernie Bilko

Paul Ford as Colonel John Hall

Nick Saunders as Captain Barker

Harvey Lembeck as Corporal Rocco Barbella

Allan Melvin as Corporal Steve Henshaw

Joe E Ross as Sergeant Ritzik

Jimmy Little as Sergeant Grover

Herbie Faye as Corporal Sam Fender

Maurice Gosfield as Private Duane Doberman

Mickey Freeman as Private Fielding Zimmerman

Tige Andrews as Private Gander

Jack Healy as Private Mullen

Maurice Brenner as Private Irving Fleischman

Bernie Fein as Private Gomez

P J Sydney as Private Palmer

Walter Cartier as Private Claude Dillingham

Terry Carter as Private Sugie Sugarman

John Gibson as The Chaplain

 

Season Four Episode Guide

 

 

Gold Fever (Air Date - 23 Sep 1958 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)Also starring - Jeff Bryant, Catherine Payne, Jason Evers, Frank Schofield, Tom Aherne, Alfred Sandor and Royal Beal 

When Bilko buys an old chest at an army surplus sale he finds a map showing the location of a gold mine in Grove City, California. Bilko brings all his skills into play when he cooks up a scheme to have the personnel of Fort Baxter transfered to Camp Fremont in California. But is there really gold in them thar hills?

 

Bilko's Vampire (Air Date - 1 Oct 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Paul Reed, Nelson Olmsted, Danny Dayton, Jack Collins, Walter Cahoon and Otto Hulett 

When Ritzik keeps leaving Bilko's poker sessions early Bilko finds out Rupert is going home early to watch his favourite horror movies. Bilko manages to convince Ritzik that he's a vampire and when he hears that Hollywood are on the lookout for a new horror movie star he sets out to convince the Hollywood executives he has just the man for the job.

 

Bilko's De Luxe Tours (Air Date - 8 Oct 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Joseph Lieberman, Marcel Hillaire, George Kluge, Kevin Coughlin, Whitfield Connor, Eda Heinemann and Susan Steel 

Bilko convinces the platoon to invest their money in a broken down coach. His plan is to fix up the wreck and set up a coach travel service for GI's between Camp Fremont and Las Vegas. When the railroad offer a cheaper deal, The Bilko Bus Company decide to offer deluxe tours of California.

 

Bilko The Potato Sack King (Air Date - 15 Oct 1958 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Herb Voland, Erin O'Brien Moore, Bill Sleton, Lisa Loughlin, Richard Keith, Alfred Sandor, Jack Collins, George Kennedy, Dovima and Heather Hewitt 

When Bilko gets his hands on a surplus of burlap sacking he spots a money-making opportunity when he thinks he can talk the Pentagon into making the new-issue army uniforms from burlap.

 

Bilko Vs. Covington (Air Date - 22 Oct 1958 - Written by Neil Simon, Arnie Rosen & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Keefe Brasselle, Iggie Wolfington, House Jameson, Sho Onodera and Beverly Lawrence 

Bilko has a rival in the form of Sgt. J. J. Covington. When Covington's dances, raffles and poker nights start proving more popular than Bilko's, Ernie starts an all-out war. It's not long before the battling sergeants are pulling out all the stops and using every dirty trick in the book.

 

Bilko Joins The Navy (Air Date - 28 Oct 1958 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Walter Greaza, Larry Douglas, Jean Carson, Marian Colby, Jeri Archer, Larry Storch, Richard Everhart, Marty Ingels, George Maharis and Frankie Thomas 

Bilko, Paparelli and Zimmerman are on furlough in San Diego with a grand total of $7 between them. When Bilko hears of Navy crap game he rents some Navy uniforms and manages to crash the game. When the game is broken up by the shore police, Bilko and the boys are escorted back to 'their ship' and wind up on an aircraft carrier bound for Alaska.

 

Bilko's Big Woman Hunt (Air Date - 5 Nov 1958 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Elliott Reid, Hildy Parks, Paul Lynde, Eddie Bruce, Horace McMahon, Carroll Saint and Eddie Hanley 

Bilko falls head-over-heels in love after he's trapped in an elevator with a beautiful woman. He's desperate to find her but it seems it can't find anyone who can help him find his mystery girl.

 

The  Bilkos And The Crosbys (Air Date - 12 Nov 1958 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Dennis Crosby, Gary Crosby, Lindsay Crosby, Phillip Crosby and Paul Reed 

Pvt.Lindsay Crosby arrives at Camp Fremont and Bilko learns that he's the son of Bing Crosby. Bilko begins to imagine what life would be like if he, rather than Bing, was head of the Crosby clan.

 

Bilko's Allergy (Air Date - 19 Nov 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Nelson Olmsted, Frank M Thomas, J D Cannon, John Marley, Dort Clark, James Carew and Ray Singer 

Soon after Bilko purloins Colonel Hall's tax refund for his own purposes he develops an allergy to playing cards and fears he'll have to give up poker. The doctor discovers that Bilko is suffering from a guilt complex over the way he treated Colonel Hall. The only way to cure his allergy is to start treating the Colonel with respect!

 

Bilko And The Chaplain (Air Date - 26 Nov 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Harold Huber, Betty Benet, Walter Arnold, Earl Muron and Don Barry 

When Bilko is sent on a detail to San Francisco, Colonel Hall asks the Chaplain to accompany him. The Chaplain takes Bilko to see his pet project - a centre for military children. Bilko soon realises that the Chaplain has been taken in by a crooked real estate dealer.

 

Bilko Presents The McGuire Sisters (Air Date - 3 Dec 1958 CBS - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Christine McGuire, Dorothy McGuire, Phyllis McGuire, Leo Liebman and Mickey Rooney

Bilko stages a concert at Camp Fremont with the promise of some of Hollywood's biggest names, including Frank Sinatra, Kim Novak and The McGuire Sisters. The names might be famous but the faces aren't. Bilko's Sinatra recites poetry, Kim Novak plays the musical saw and The McGuire Sisters are not the famous female group but a troupe of Hungarian dancers. Following a letter from Doberman the real McGuire Sisters arrive at Camp Fremont.

 

Bilko's Secret Mission (Air Date - 10 Dec 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Royal Beal, Nelson Olmsted, George Kennedy, Wynn Wright and Dean Martin 

When Bilko is sent to Yucca Flats to work on nuclear test program Ritzik is magnetised when he's exposed to one of the scientists machines. Bilko and Ritzik skip the base and head for Las Vegas where Rupert is keen to demonstrate out his 'attractive' gambling skills.

 

Bilko's Giveaway (Air Date - 17 Dec 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Morey Amsterdam, Frank Albertson, Joey Trent, Larry Fletcher, Matt Crowley, Dick Noel, Kenneth Konopka and George Kennedy 

Bilko fast-talks his way onto a Hollywood quiz show. He's partnered with a know-it-all kid and between them they win $25,000 worth of prizes. When Bilko realises that he has to pay the tax on his winnings he comes up with an ingenious way to dispose of the prizes. He starts up his own quiz show in Grove City and all is going well until Doberman becomes a big hit with the audience.

 

Bilko And The Medium (Air Date - 22 Dec 1958 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Charlotte Rae, Jorie Remus, Kirby Smith, Fred Stewart and George Kennedy 

Bilko needs $500 to open a pool room in Grove City. When he learns that the Ritziks have been visiting a medium called Madame Zaboda for advice he spots the chance to make money. When he finds out that Emma & Rupert are being conned he sets out to take down Madame Zaboda.

 

Bilko's Bopster (Air Date - 1 Jan 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Ronny Graham, Larry Storch, Mickey Deems, Josip Elic, Roger Landry, Bernard Reed, Diane Shalet, Gordon Peters, John Boruff, Bob Hastings and George Kennedy 

After a marathon poker session Bilko is desperate for some shut-eye. When jazz musician Skinny Sanders arrives at Camp Fremont, he keeps Bilko and the platoon awake with his music. Bilko is about to have him transferred to Alaska when he finds out that Skinny is actually a famous jazz musician.

 

Bilko's Hollywood Romance (Air Date - 9 Jan 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Julie Wilson, Leon Belasco, Sydney Smith and Frank Maxwell 

When Hollywood star Monica Malamar is ordered by studio bosses to clean up her image she embarks on a romance with Bilko. When he arrives in Hollywood Bilko plays the shy, country boy but it's not long before he's up to his conniving, scheming tricks.

 

The Phil Silvers Pontiac Special: Keep In Step (Air Date - 23 Jan 1959 - Written by Billy Friedberg, Arnie Rosen, Coleman Jacoby & Terry Ryan)  

Also starring - Diana Dors, Sydney Chaplin and Bob Hastings 

In this live broadcast special Bilko plans a show at Camp Fremont, an All-Star revue called Bilko's Brevities. But instead of hiring professional performers Bilko decides to save money by using the men of his own platoon. When Colonel Hall finds out what Bilko has done with the money he donated for the show he bans all entertainment at Camp Fremont. Bilko learns that Broadway star Lanny Langford has been recalled to active duty and he sets out to make sure that Langford winds up in the Motor Pool platoon at Camp Fremont.

 

Bilko's Grand Hotel (Air Date - 28 Jan 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Irwen Corey, Arthur Coen, Jane Dulo,  House Jameson, Paula Trueman,  and Frank M Thomas 

Bilko invests £300 in a run-down hotel in Grove City. When the homeless Chester Hilton is elected as president of the new venture it means Bilko can call his hotel The Grove City Hilton. Bilko hopes that the Hilton group will want to buy out his ramshackle hotel in order to keep the good name of their business.

 

Bilko's Credit Card (Air Date - 4 Feb 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Augusta Merighi, Joseph Calleia, Al Lewis, George Turner, Al Hodge, Marcel Hillaire, Dorothy Dollivar and Bruce Brighton 

When Bilko is unable to pay the restaurant bill on a date he tries to take out a credit card and is refused. He sets up the GI's Gourmet Diners Club credit card for the soldiers of Camp Fremont. But is Bilko onto a winner?

 

Viva Bilko (Air Date - 11 Feb 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Leo Belascon, Harold Huber, Carlos Montalban, Leonardo Cimino, Bob Hastings, Amy Freeman, Henry Beckman and Adele Lamont 

Bilko takes Doberman, Zimmerman and Paparelli to Mexico. They are held up by bandits and forced to swap their uniforms and papers. Trouble ensues when one of the bandits just happens to be Duane Doberman's double.

 

The Colonel's Promotion (Air Date - 18 Feb 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Royal Beal, Larry Douglas and Claude Harmon 

Colonel Hall is furious when he's passed over once again for promotion. Bilko decides to give the Colonel's promotion chances a boost by getting him in to the President's golfing foursome and it's not long before John Hall is mixing it with the President!

 

Bilko's Sharpshooter (Air Date - 25 Feb 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Peggy Cass, Leo Liebman, Larry Douglas, and William Bramley 

Bilko finds a new prospect in WAC Polly Porter. She's a crackshot with a rifle and Bilko sets out to promote her as the new Annie Oakley....but love rears it's head and threatens to thwart Bilko's plans.

 

Bilko's Formula Seven (Air Date - 4 Mar 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Natalie Schafer, Tom Noel and Larry Fletcher

Pvt.Jenkins, Bilko's latest recruit, has brought illicit booze onto the base. During an inspection Jenkins dumps the booze into the engine of a jeep. Following a happy accident Jenkins winds up with the resultant gloop on his face, making him look younger. Bilko tries to get the beauty industry to buy his new miracle face-cream and all looks good until they discover it contains some unusual ingredients.

 

Bilko's Ape Man (Air Date - 18 Mar 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Kenneth Vaughn, Edith King, John Alexander, Fred Herrick and Lucille Ball 

Pvt.Forbes, a fitness instructor, is assigned to Bilko's platoon. Bilko learns that Hollywood are looking for a new Tarzan and he's convinced Pvt.Forbes is just what they're looking for. He enters Forbes in the Mr Universe contest. But Forbes is disqualified so Bilko decides on a new gimmick which involves dressing Doberman as a gorilla.

 

Warrant Officer Paparelli (Air Date - 25 Mar 1959  - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring -John Alexander, Madeline Clive and David Metcalfe 

A tough lieutenant gives Bilko and his platoon a hard time. When the lieutenant is transferred, Bilko decides to have someone from his own platoon promoted to officer status. Who better than mild-mannered Dino Paparelli? But it soon becomes clear that Bilko has created a monster.

 

Bilko's Godson (Air Date - 3 Apr 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Doro Merande, Walter Brooke, Gordon Peters, Paul Lipson, Kenneth Brauer, R Norwood Smith, Norma Leary, Catherine Payne, Joe E Marks, Rolly Bester and Dick Cavett 

Bilko's pal names his son after Ernie and makes him the boy's godfather. Wanting only the best for his godson Bilko tries to enroll him in the Stanford University class of '77. When he discovers that Stanford will only accept reservations from former students he has to find a way to enrol himself in the university.

 

Guinea Pig Bilko (Air Date - 17 Apr 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Dan Frazer, Jim Bowles and George Kennedy 

Colonel Hall suckers Bilko into taking part in a secret experiment conducted by Major Wallace. Wallace is testing a drug which he hopes will cure 'hyperactivity neurosis' - a condition where the patient is so obsessed with gambling they can't concentrate on military duties. The drug works and Bilko changes his ways. However, with Bilko no longer running his gambling empire his whole platoon try to take over his gambling concessions.

 

Bilko The Butler (Air Date - 24 Apr 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Nancy Gile, Jane Kean, Jane Dulo, Phillipa Bevans, Leo Liebman and George Kennedy 

While attending a wedding in San Francisco Bilko learns that the GI groom met his wealthy bride via the USO. Bilko goes to the same USO and takes up the offer of dinner with what he believes are a wealthy socialite family. When he gets to the house the couple are actually the butler and his wife. When he learns that the couple have to put on a dinner for a group of wealthy socialites he offers his services in the hopes that he will pick up some juicy stock market tips.

 

Ritzik Goes Civilian (Air Date - 1 May 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Charles Mendig, John C Becher and Abby Lewis

Ritzik is fleeced once again by Bilko and Emma Ritzik has had enough. She persuades Rupert to leave the army and get away from Bilko once and for all. Rupert buys a diner and when Bilko pays a visit he realises that Ritzik has been duped into buying the run-down diner and sets out to get him his money back.

 

Bilko's Small Car (Air Date - 8 May 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Bill Hellinger,Phil Robinson, Don Cardwell, Arthur Cohen, Richard Farmer and George Kennedy 

Colonel Hall asks Bilko to pick up his new foreign car from the dealership in Grove City. Bilko uses the car to carry some gambling equipment and the car ends up being impounded by the local police. Not wanting to confess to the Colonel about what happened, Bilko and the platoon put together their own car using jeep parts. Bilko's car becomes a hit and he decides to go into the car manufacturing business.

 

Doberman, Missing Heir (15 May 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Lucy Landau, Ronald Long, Jane Kean and George Turner 

Lord and Lady Rockford launch a TV appeal to help find their missing son. Bilko sees a marked resemblance between Doberman and Lady Rockford and is convinced Duane is the missing heir to a fortune. He reunites Duane with the Rockfords and hopes that Duane will share fortune with his old motor pool pals. However Doberman his new station in life turns Duane into a society snob and he is reluctant to share his new-found wealth.

 

Bilko's Casino (Air Date - 22 May 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Sloan Simpson, Murray Matheson, Doro Merande, Melville Ruick and Al Lewis 

As punishment Colonel Hall orders Bilko and his men to clean up the USO centre in Grove City. When Bilko learns that the centre is sited on the only land in California where gambling is legal he plans to set up his own casino. However he soon runs into trouble with the local mob.

 

The Colonel's Second Honeymoon (Air Date - 29 May 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - T J Halligan, Virginia Martin, Zandu Scott, Marilyn Hanold and Vickie Taylor 

There's a heatwave in Grove City and Bilko schemes to get himself sent to a ski resort for a rest cure. But first he has to make sure the Colonel is off the base and he encourages the him to take wife Nell on a second honeymoon. Bilko gets his vacation at the ski resort but trouble ensues when the Colonel and Mrs Hall arrive there on their second honeymoon.

 

Bilko In Outer Space (Air Date - 5 Jun 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Paul Lynde 

Grover and Ritzik win $600 in a crap game and Bilko is keen to get his hands on their winnings. Grover and Ritzik try hiding from Bilko to keep him away from their money. They are finally suckered into volunteering for a special detail involving a space chamber where they think they will be alone for three days. But Bilko has other plans.

 

The Bilko Boycott (Air Date - 12 Jun 1959 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring -Jane Dulo, Phillipa Bevans, Jane Kean and Nancy Gile 

Henshaw has finally had enough of Bilko forever fleecing the platoon and sets up Gamblers Anonymous at Camp Fremont. With no GI's left to bilk Ernie decides to target the WACs on camp. When he sneaks into the WAC's quarters to pick up his loot their barracks are put into quarantine due to an outbreak of measles.

 

Weekend Colonel (Air Date - 19 Jun 1959 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Jane Dulo, George Kennedy and Al Lewis 

Colonel Hall has a closed circuit TV system installed at Camp Fremont in the hopes of finally putting an end to Bilko's gambling. When the Colonel spends the weekend at Lake Tahoe, Bilko can't believe his luck when he finds Charlie Clusterman, a short-order cook in a local diner who also happens to be the Colonel's double. He brings Clusterman into the camp in the guise of the Colonel and has him get rid of all the TV cameras. The real Colonel arrives home early and finds out just what Bilko has been up to.

 

The Phil Silvers Show - Season Four Gallery

 

Gold Fever                               Bilko's Vampire                         Bilko's Deluxe Tours

   

Bilko The Potato Sack King         Bilko vs Covington                     Bilko Joins The Navy

   

Bilko's Big Woman Hunt              Bilko And The Crosbys                Bilko's Allergy

   

Bilko And The Chaplain               Presents The McGuire Sisters      Bilko's Secret Mission

   

Bilko's Giveaway                        Bilko And The Medium               Bilko's Bopster

   

Bilko's Hollywood Romance          The Phil Silvers Pontiac Special    Bilko's Grand Hotel

   

Bilko's Credit Card                     Viva Bilko                                   The Colonel's Promotion

   

Bilko's Sharpshooter                  Bilko's Formula Seven                Bilko's Ape Man

   

Warrant Officer Paparelli             Bilko's Godson                           Guinea Pig Bilko

   

Bilko The Butler                         Ritzik Goes Civillian                     Bilko's Small Car

   

Doberman, Missing Heir              Bilko's Casino                            The Colonel's 2nd Honeymoon

   

Bilko In Outer Space                  The Bilko Boycott                     Weekend Colonel