It wasn’t too long ago (relatively) that showing a couple together on a mattress on television was taboo. I thought Valentine’s Day would be an appropriate time to explore that history. “The Flintstones,” an animated series in the 1960s about a cave-dwelling prehistoric family, may have been among the first to show a couple, Wilma and Fred, together in bed (albeit a bed made of rock).
For live-action couples on TV shows, the “one-foot rule” was said to have existed. You could show a couple in their bedroom, but at least one person had to have one foot on the floor! On “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” there was a nightstand between Laura and Rob’s twin-size beds. The same was true of Lucille Ball and Ricky Ricardo on “I Love Lucy” in the 1950s (and reruns forever)—and they were married in real life!
Florence Henderson, playing Carol, the mother (and stepmother) on “The Brady Brunch” (1969–1974), once suggested she and TV husband Peter were the first to sleep in the same bed on-air, but that’s widely disputed. The not-quite-human family in “The Munsters” (1964–1966 and rebooted last year) are often cited, but TV history trivia experts are more likely to give the honors to Mary Kay and Johnny (1947–1950), which was set in Greenwich Village, New York and is considered the first situation comedy on television. The leading actress and actor were married off camera, as well.
Flash forward to today: It may be difficult finding a show on TV, Netflix, Amazon, Hulu or any streaming service where couples are not together in bed!
Sending my love to the more than 90 flexible polyurethane foam producers worldwide that certify foam through us, to the companies and brands that choose to manufacture mattresses, pillows and upholstered furniture containing CertiPUR-US® certified foam — and to all the folks out there who care about what their loved ones sleep on. Happy Valentine’s Day, all!