Bewitched was a sophisticated ensemble situation comedy (considered light and fluffy by some) featuring relevant cultural themes in a fantasy context. Well written and superbly performed, the show has run continuously for 40 years and proven to be timeless. Producer/ Director William Asher ( I Love Lucy, Make Room for Daddy, Our Miss Brooks, Gidget, Alice ), wisely created a show that focused more on character development than the occult. While the endless sight gags and breezy writing enhanced the shows appeal, it was the well -drawn characters and sublime comedic performances that made Bewitched a classic!
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At the very center of this classic show was Elizabeth Montgomery's portrayal of a beautiful, good-hearted witch named Samantha, a character rare in 1960's television. A strong, independent woman with the world at her finger tips--or a twitch of her nose. Samantha was a clever role reversal of the women's rights movement. Her rebellion so strong, she disregards the wishes and ultimatums of her arrogant family and the terrifying Witches Council. Quite simply, Samantha enjoyed being a homemaker and raising a family, and had the strength of character to live her life on her own terms. Equally determined was her mortal husband Darrin Stephens, a talented advertising executive with McMann & Tate. He obsessed with leading a normal, conservative lifestyle, and fearless enough to stand firm against the most powerful witch or warlock.
The struggle would begin when Darrin and Samantha met, fell in love, and married during the first episode. Disapproving of mixed marriages between mortals and witches, Samantha's powerful mother, Endora, was determined to prove to Samantha that the marriage was a tremendous mistake. Endora would determine Samantha was steadfast, and directed of her attention toward making Darrin (Dick York) miserable. Over the shows 8 year run, Endora tried numerous spells, all creating humiliation and chaos in Darrin's mortal world, not to mention Darrin's new found paranoia. Darrin was in love, and continued to stand firm that he and Sam would have a normal, loving marriage.