Episode 1: In March 1963, Eric and Ernie made their first trip across the Atlantic to appear on The Ed Sullivan Show. Jonathan Ross tells the story of how they had been spotted appearing at The London Palladium by Sullivan, and how he booked them for three performances in that year. At first the American studio audience weren't sure what to make of Eric and Ernie and, on their first appearance, they were listened to in virtual silence. So they selected a more physical routine for their second performance, and the reaction improved immeasurably.

Episode 2: Ater their first performances on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1963, Eric and Ernie are invited back to New York the following year and appear on the same night as The Beatles and are seen by over 70 million viewers. The comedy duo realise that to appeal to the huge American viewing audience they need to concentrate on their more visual comedy rather than the 'cross talk' so loved by their British fans. They also get the opportunity to become movie stars when they are offered a three-film deal in Britain - might this be their fast track to Hollywood?


Episode 3: Eric and Ernie first work in colour on American television and are invited to perform on a major TV special alongside stars like Bing Crosby and Bob Hope. Back in Britain, an ill-fated endeavour to record a series designed for both British and American audiences proves a disappointing end to their time at ATV, and drives them into the waiting arms of the BBC where they go on to deliver the best work of their careers.

Morecambe & Wise In America