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By Dalton Ross
Updated March 17, 2020 at 02:41 AM EDT
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Dick York, Bewitched, ...
Credit: Bewitched: Everett Collection

Did you know that if you film a scene, tell everyone to hold really, really still, shut off the camera, add a prop of some sort, and then turn the camera back on — it looks like magic? It’s true! But you probably suspected that already. And considering that 75 percent of the humor from the original Bewitched is derived from said camera stunts — Elizabeth Montgomery used special crutches to hold poses while crew members added/removed items from the set — it may not be quite as hysterical as you remember. That’s not a slam on the show. For 1964, a conventional suburban comedy with a most unconventional witch in the lead role was inventive, certainly more inventive than a certain Hollywood remake, so you can hardly blame producers for milking Samantha’s trademark nose twitch (actually more of an upper-lip shimmy).

Not to say that all of Bewitched hasn’t aged well. (And I’m not referring to season 1 being available in both its original black-and-white and a new colorized version; other than Dick York looking a little too George Hamiltan at times, the color one isn’t bad, but you’d still be wise to stick with the authentic article.) Montgomery and York’s chemistry remains magical, especially when the former is trying to protect the latter from her mortal-loathing mother, Endora (Agnes Moorehead, who steals every scene she’s in).

A two-part bonus featurette is typically fawning but does offer a few interesting tidbits — such as how Moorehead got cast after Montgomery and producer/husband William Asher spotted her in a Bloomingdale’s, why Dick York left the show (extreme back pain), and that Samantha and Darrin were the first TV couple to share a bed. No doubt that’s where the real magic happened.

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