Master Sergeant Bilko, regularly helped by the soldiers at Fort Baxter's motor pool, spends little time performing his duties by constantly trying to obtain money through various get-rich-quick scams and promotions.
Sergeant Ernie Bilko is the ultimate con man. He runs the motor pool at a small Kansas U.S. Army Camp. Colonel Hall, nominally in charge of the base, tries to keep Bilko's plans in check. Bilko runs every money making scheme that he thinks he can pull off. Midnight cruises on landing craft, tank rides, poker games, and an interesting deal with local service stations for spare parts for Jeep tires.Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
George Kennedy, who served in the U.S. Army, was a Technical Advisor for the show. He was also given a bit part playing M.P. Sergeant Kennedy. The first acting role of his screen career. See more »
Sgt. Bilko routinely wore his decorations incorrectly, and differently from one show to the next. He nearly always wore his Combat Infantryman Badge with the lower wreath overlapping the top row of ribbons; the lower edge of the CIB should always be about 1/4" above the top edge of the top row of ribbons. Also, he nearly always wore a unit commendation ribbon centered below his other ribbons, just below the top edge of his left breast pocket flap; unit commendation ribbons on Army uniforms were worn just above the top edge of the right breast pocket flap (although that style of "Class A" uniform is now long obsolete). Also, Bilko sometimes wore a unit commendation ribbon above the pocket flap of his right breast pocket, and sometimes wore the same ribbon below that same pocket flap; all unit commendation ribbons on Army uniforms were worn together, just above the right breast pocket flap. See more »
MSgt. Ernest G. Bilko:
You said "but". I've put the finger on the whole problem. You're a "but" man. Don't say "but". That little word "but" is the difference between success and failure.
See more »
In the massive and essential "Radio Times Guide to TV Comedy" the editor Mark Lewisohn includes his personal Top 20 Sitcoms of all time on British TV. His Number One is not a British production, but it is a show that has been part of the BBC schedules for nearly 50 years, and is an important element of British television heritage.
"The Phil Silvers Show" - or "Bilko" as it is usually known - has been and remains a sitcom with a unique feature that makes it Number One (or close to that) for lovers of good comedy. That feature is Phil Silvers, who was a comedy performer of undeniable genius. He dominates every moment that he is on that small screen, and even then he is complemented by wonderful performances by a host of other regular characters - Colonel Hall, Doberman, Ritzic, and the rest.
To celebrate 50 years since this historic show began on US TV, a new DVD box-set has been produced. On the three discs there are 21 complete episodes, plus some great extras, including the original pilot show never shown on British TV, revealing commentaries by Dick Van Dyke and other members of the cast, and other Phil Silvers appearances and interviews. A must-have for the DVD collections of all comedy lovers.
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