I knew that the executives who run the television networks are almost always shortsighted pea-brained idiots, but I did not know originally "The Dick Van Dyke Show" was cancelled at the end of its first season. Granted, the show finished in 80th place in the Nielsen ratings and during that first season Carl Reiner was clearly writing more for himself than Dick Van Dyke (which made sense since Reiner wrote and filmed the original pilot "Head of the Family" for himself), but we are talking about coming "that" close to losing what is one of the classic situation comedies in the history of television. After that first season "The Dick Van Dyke Show" finished 9th, 3rd, 7th, and 16th in the Nielsens and won the Emmy for best show in its category all four years (it was just that the category changed from Outstanding Program Achievement in the Field of Humor, to the Field of Comedy, then in Entertainment, and finally as Outstanding Comedy Series). Ginny Weissman and Coyne Stevens Sanders bring the sensibilities of both fans and television historians to this look at "The Dick Van Dyke Show." They benefited from writing with the complete cooperation of every member of the cast, who heartily endorse the end product. This revised and expanded version contains over 130 photographs, synopses of all 158 episodes, and a 500 question trivia section that tax your knowledge of the show. You will also find lists of all the awards won by the show and its cast during its five-year fun, an update on where everyone was as of 1993, the revival of the show on "Nick at Night," and the complete script of "That's My Boy??," the episode always cited as receiving the longest laugh in the history of sitcom taped before a studio audience when Rob opens the door for the couple he is convinced has taken Richie home from the hospital (if you do not know why the audience explodes long and loud in laughter, then you are completely unfamiliar with the show and have no business reading this far into the review). This book is written for the fans, which explains why the synopses of each episode is provided "in brief," which means a single sentence. The point is clearly not to describe the episode, but rather to remind you which one it is in the grand scheme of things. Given that the cast list for each episode always includes all of the principles every single time, I admit I would have rather had the descriptions of the episodes include choice moments. I would rather know what songs the cast sang on "'The Alan Brady Show' Presents" or be reminded about the big diamond (next to the glass doorknob) Rob and Laura found in Hezekiah's desk in "The Great Petrie Fortune," instead of knowing what episodes did not have Buddy and/or Sally or featured Millie and/or Jerry Helper. I especially liked the details about the original pilot and how Van Dyke and the rest of the stellar cast were eventually assembled for the show. In fact, Weissman and Sanders repeatedly provide insights into some of the most famous episodes on the show. Finally, what makes it clear this book knows what it is doing, Richard Deacon is included on the front cover along with Dick Van Dyke, Mary Tyler Moore, Morey Amsterdam, and Rose Marie. Case closed.