The Golden Days Of TV
Aunt Bee Could be a Sourpuss
Frances Bavier, the actress who portrayed Aunt Bee on the show, supposedly did not have much of a sense of humor. Pretty ironic career choice, huh?
Andy Taylor and Helen Crump Sitting in a Tree
There Was a Spin-off
The final episode was called “Mayberry R.F.D.” and it aired on September 23, 1968. The episode set up the premise for a spin-off show of the same name that aired from 1968-1971.
Don Knotts got sent lots of “single bullets
Andy Was a Real Jokester
Andy was really into playing pranks on his co-stars, with Don Knotts being the main target. Don’s real first name was actually Jesse (a name he hated), and Andy loved to tease him about it by calling him “Jess.”
Aunt Bee did not like Andy
Andy was supposed to be “the funny one”
The original concept of the show was for Andy to be the show’s resident comedian, a sort of homey Will Rogers-type cracker barrel philosopher. Andy would comment and make jokes about the show’s other characters. But after seeing Don Knotts in the first episode, Andy knew Barney would be the show’s resident “funny man” and Andy would be his straight man.
The characters were introduced on another show
Floyd the barber had trouble standing up
Because he had suffered a stroke, Howard MacNear (who played the barber) had trouble standing. A special stool was built to make it appear Floyd was standing when he was, in fact, half-sitting or leaning. Floyd was also often seen sitting in his barber chair or sitting on a bench outside his shop. (Howard’s stroke also left his left side paralyzed. Watch Floyd closely in later episodes, you’ll notice he will never move his left hand.)
Andy and Barney were originally cousins
They Quit While They Were Ahead
“The Andy Griffith Show” ended while it was at the top of the Nielsen’s Ratings. There have only been two other television shows in history to do this: “I Love Lucy,” and “Seinfeld.”
Andy’s homage to his dad
Caught in the Act
During one of the cast’s many pranks, a crew member dressed as a waiter and delivered a dinner to Andy’s hotel room. He caught Andy and Aneta in a compromising position. Now that’s one heck of a backfire.
Andy and Frances Had a Prickly Relationship
Don Knotts Loved the Pickle Episode
Don Knotts particularly loved “The Pickle Story,” which is an episode many fans cite as their favorite. In it, Aunt Bee makes a huge batch of disgusting that Andy and Barney eventually must consume. The episode is chock full of laugh-out-loud moments, and it’s quite clear the actors were having a blast filming it.
The opening theme song was called “The Fishin’ Hole
Barney’s middle name is disputed
In various episodes, Barney’s middle name is given as Milton, Oliver, and once as the initial “P.” (Andy’s middle name is not, however, nebulous and is Jackson.
The Opening Credits
Take a good look next time you see the calendar in Floyd’s barber shop. It’s always during the month of February.
The Pranks Worked Both Ways
The Cast Had Favorite Episodes Andy Griffith Favorite Episode was “Barney’s First Car.” Ronny Howard’s favorite episode was “The Ball Game,” which was penned by his father, who was a writer for the show.
Andy and Don Were Bros for Life
Don Knotts and Andy Griffith Were Real-life Best Friends
The close pal relationship and chemistry exhibited by Don and Andy on the show was no coincidence. It came as a result of their real-life friendship.