Lucille Ball as Lucy,
Vivian Vance as Ethel
on an episode of I Love Lucy
Lucy Ricardo was a friendly, ambitious and somewhat naive housewife who was constantly getting into trouble of one kind or another. "Lucy! You got some 'ess-plainin' to do!" became a famous cry of Ricky Ricardo. The setup provided ample opportunities for Ball to display her skills at physical comedy, at which she is regarded as one of the best-ever in the history of film and television.
"I Love Lucy" was not only a star vehicle for Lucille Ball, but a way for her to try to salvage her marriage to Desi Arnaz, which had been badly strained by the fact that each had a hectic performing schedule.
Along the way, she pioneered the television sitcom, and was among the first stars to film before a live audience. The use of actual film during production, instead of making just an inferior-quality kinescope as most other TV shows did at the time, paved the way for rebroadcast through syndication.
Lucille Ball died on April 26, 1989 and was interred in the Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills Cemetery in Los Angeles, California, but was later moved by her children to the Lake View Cemetery, in Jamestown, New York.