Oct. 03, 1960
30 min.
CBS TV Network

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The Andy Griffith Show tv show photo

The Andy Griffith Show

The lives of Sheriff Andy Taylor, his Aunt Bee, son Opie and deputy Barney Fife unfolded slowly in a series of charming, laugh-out-loud stories that were almost entirely character driven.

Trivia Facts | Top Quotes | Goofs/Mistakes
  • Barney Fife kept one bullet in his shirt pocket and his citation booklet in his cap.
  • Andy Taylor's middle name is Jackson.
  • According to Andy Griffith, the show's original premise was to follow the story line set up in his appearance on Make Room for Daddy. The premise was that Mayberry was so small that Andy Taylor was not only the sheriff, but the Justice of the Peace, the editor of the local newspaper, and the mayor. However when it came time to write the series, Andy decided that was too ridiculous so he asked that Andy Taylor's duties be confined to being the sheriff and the justice of the peace. However the "Justice of the Peace" task was used sparingly and usually only with out-of-town troublemakers.
  • Throughout the series, there was a character named "Mister Schwamp" who would occasionally appear in episodes. He was a middle-aged man with a slumped demeanor and he had dark hair (which looked like a comb-over or a toupee). He could usually be found sitting on a park bench or in crowd scenes. He never had any lines. One of the characters (usually Andy or Barney) would acknowledge him with "Hello, Mister Schwamp." and he would smile and nod and that's all he would do. He also appeared in two episodes of the spin-off "Gomer Pyle: USMC" (1964). The actor who played him has yet to be identified.
  • In the first season, Barney Fife courted several women including Thelma Lou. In "The Andy Griffith Show" (1960) {Andy the Matchmaker (#1.7)}, Barney courted a woman named Miss Rosemary, in "The Andy Griffith Show" (1960) {Ellie for Council (#1.10)}, Barney is seen dating Hilda May, who is again mentioned in "The Andy Griffith Show" (1960) {Christmas Story (#1.11)}. Juanita, the never-seen waitress at the local diner was also serenaded by Barn in a few episodes in later seasons. Thelma Lou is only seen in two episodes of the first season, but appears later as Barney's main squeeze.
  • When the series began, Andy and Barney were cousins in the first few episodes. This was a joke based on the stereotype that the only reason people in small towns get jobs in the local government is because they are related to someone and not based on the merits of their abilities. However, after a few well placed references of Andy and Barney's relation (usually to cap off a joke) in the first season, this idea was dropped and the back story of their relationship became simply that they were friends since childhood.
  • The character of Warren Ferguson (played by Jack Burns) was brought in to replace Barney Fife after Don Knotts left the show. Warren was referred to on occasion as Floyd the barber's nephew. Replacing the classic character of Barney Fife proved to be an impossible task, however. "Warren Ferguson" did not catch on with the viewers, and he was written out of the series after only appearing in 11 episodes. There was no explanation in any episode story line for Warren's departure; he simply stopped appearing.
  • After Howard McNear left the show, Floyd's Barber Shop became Emmit's Fixit Shop.
  • Howard McNear (Floyd the Barber) suffered a severe stroke and had trouble standing up. A special stool was created to make it appear that Floyd was standing, even though he was actually leaning or half sitting. On other episodes he was shown either sitting in the barber's chair inside his shop or on one of the chairs outside on the sidewalk.
  • The scripts used during Jack Burns's time on the show as Deputy Warren Ferguson were originally written for Don Knotts' Barney Fife.
  • Thelma Lou's last name and occupation were never revealed.
  • Milton, Oliver, and the middle initial "P" were all given as Barney Fife's middle name at one time or another during the series.
  • Andy Griffith originally told Don Knotts that he only wanted to do the show for five years. So they both signed five-year contracts. During the fifth season, Knotts began looking for other work. He then signed a five-year deal with Universal Pictures. Suddenly, Griffith decided to continue on with the series for three more years and offered Knotts a new contract. But Knotts was already bound by his contract with Universal and left the show.
  • In two episodes of the second season, Andy Griffith's hand is heavily bandaged. Griffith had broken his hand by punching a wall. On the show, the bandage was explained by Sheriff Taylor saying he hurt his hand apprehending some criminals.
  • The character of Helen Crump was supposed to be a one-shot. That is why they gave the character an unpleasant sounding name. But the producers were so impressed with Aneta Corsaut's performance and her rapport with Andy Griffith that they made her a regular cast member.
  • The character played by Hope Summers was originally named "Bertha Edwards" in the first season. In the second season, the character came to be known as "Clara" and she referred to her late husband as "Mr. Johnson". Later, she came to be known as "Clara Edwards".
  • African-Americans appear throughout the series but mostly as extras. Rockne Tarkington is the only African-American actor ever to have a speaking role on the show, in "The Andy Griffith Show" (1960) {Opie's Piano Lesson (#7.26)}.
  • Andy and Barney's squad car was a Ford Galaxie. The cars were supplied free of charge by a nearby Ford dealer, and whenever the newest model came out, it was sent to the studio and the old one was returned to the dealer who re-painted it and sold it. Altogether, there were about 10 different Ford Galaxies used throughout the run of the series.
  • Elinor Donahue decided not to return after the first season because she felt she had no on-screen chemistry with Andy Griffith. Griffith later admitted that it was his own fault because he had a hard time showing affection on-screen, and as a result, the relationship didn't appear real or believable. In contrast, Griffith had no problem showing affection toward Aneta Corsaut or her Helen Crump character. The two often flirted and went off together in private, even though Griffith was married at the time.
  • The final season of the show was pretty much a setup for its replacement, Mayberry R.F.D..
  • The show was shot on the same set as Atlanta from Gone with the Wind, if you were to walk out of the courthouse and look to the right at the end of the street, you can see the old Atlanta train station in many episodes.
  • Aunt Bee was originally from Morgantown, West Virginia. This is believed to be the town where Don Knotts was born and raised. Don Knotts even graduated from Morgantown's, West Virginia University. Tributes to Knotts include a statue and a street named in his honor.
  • Sheriff Taylor did not routinely appear wearing a necktie or a sidearm. In several episodes, he wears a necktie or a sidearm in special circumstances, such as when a VIP visited Mayberry or if he had to track an escaped convict reported to be in the vicinity. He rarely was shown smoking, but did so in several episodes.
  • When Howard McNear left the show after years of declining health, his departure was explained by having Floyd sell the barbershop and moving away to be with his daughter.
  • The series ended while still at the top of the Nielsen's Ratings, one of only three shows to have done so, along with I Love Lucy and "Seinfeld" (1989).
  • When Don Knotts left the show, his absence was explained by having Barney move to Raleigh, North Carolina to join their police department.
  • One of the maps used for a period of time behind Andy's desk was simply a state map of Idaho turned upside down.
  • The character 'Andy Taylor' was ranked #8 in TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time" (20 June 2004 issue).
  • When Don Knotts left the show, Jerry Van Dyke was considered for the part of a deputy who would have replaced Barney Fife, and even appears in a deputy's uniform in a fifth-season episode. However, Van Dyke chose instead to star in NBC's My Mother the Car, and later said if he had to do it over again, he would have taken the deputy part instead.
  • Before Aunt Bee moved in with Andy, he had a housekeeper named Rose. Andy performed her wedding ceremony in the first episode.

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