Season Three - September 1957 to June 1958


Production Credits


Filmed at the DuMont Studios, NY by Kenco Films, Inc. for CBS Television


Produced by Edward J Montagne

 Staged by Aaron Ruben

Directed by Al De Caprio

Photographed by William J. Miller

Supervised by Edward J.Montagne


Edited by Ray Sandiford

Art Direction by Richard Jackson

Additional Art Direction by Robert Rowe Paddock


Assistant Producer - Kevin Pines

Production Manager - M. Clay Adams

Music by John Strauss

Additional Music by Hank Sylvern

Recording Engineer - James Shields

Settings by Jack Landau


Writing Supervisor - Billy Friedberg


Writers - Nat Hiken, Billy Friedberg, Terry Ryan, Phil Sharp, Coleman Jacoby, Tony Webster, AJ Russell, Sidney Zelinka, Aaron Ruben, Phil Meltzer, Arnie Rosen, Neil Simon and Paul Jordan


Credits Announcer: Bern Bennett




Phil Silvers as Master Sergeant Ernie Bilko

Paul Ford as Colonel John Hall

Nick Saunders as Captain Barker

Harvey Lembeck as Corporal Rocco Barbella

Allan Melvin as Corporal Steve Henshaw

Joe E Ross as Sergeant Ritzik

Jimmy Little as Sergeant Grover

Elizabeth Fraser as Sergeant Joan Hogan

Herbie Faye as Corporal Sam Fender

Maurice Gosfield as Private Duane Doberman

Mickey Freeman as Private Fielding Zimmerman

Karl Lukas as Private Stash Kadowski (Credit Only)

Tige Andrews as Private Gander

Jack Healy as Private Mullen

Maurice Brenner as Private Irving Fleischman

Bernie Fein as Private Gomez

P J Sydney as Private Palmer

Terry Carter as Private 'Sugie' Sugarman

Walter Cartier as Private Claude Dillingham

Terry Carter as Private Sugie Sugarman

John Gibson as The Chaplain


Season Three Episode Guide



Bilko's Merry Widow (Air Date - 17 Sep 1957 - Written by Nat Hiken & Billy Friedberg)

Also starring - Margaret Hamilton, Frank Thomas, Janet Medland, Edith King, Paula Trueman and Gretchen Wyler 

After losing the Platoon's Welfare Fund money on a horse race Bilko is on the lookout for a scheme to help recoup his losses. When he learns that the ladies of Roseville are willing to pay a $500 bonus to anyone who can stage a professional musical in the town Bilko decides tries to try and get hold of the rights to a Broadway hit.


Bilko's Boys Town (Air Date - 24 Sep 1957 - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Darryl Richard, Jason Evers, Nelson Olmsted, Alice Yourman, Kippy Campbell, Ken Rapiert and Lillian Schaaf 

For once Bilko and the platoon are desperate to go on desert manoeuvres when they realise they'll be based near Las Vegas. Colonel Hall figures out just why Bilko is so keen to go and orders Bilko and his platoon to stay at Fort Baxter. So Bilko turns Fort Baxter into the ultimate Summer Camp for boys and with the fees set at $125 a kid he hopes to rake in the money!


Hillbilly Whiz (Air Date - 1 Oct 1957 - Written by Coleman Jacoby & Arnie Rosen)

Also starring - Dick Van Dyke, Frank Campanella, Joyce Gladman, Frank Milan, Phil Rizzuto, Yogi Berra, Whitey Ford, Red Barber and Gil McDougald 

When 'Bilko's Bombers' are beaten 24 - 0 by Fort Baxter's WAC baseball team and with big bucks riding on the next game Bilko is keen to find a new pitcher. When Pvt.Hank Lumpkin is assigned to his platoon it's not long before Bilko discovers that Lumpkin is a natural baseball talent just waiting to be discovered.


Bilko's Valentine (Air Date - 8 Oct 1957 - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Nydia Westman, Gordon Polk, Guy Repp and Kay Lyder

When Bilko forgets to send Joan a Valentine's gift it's the last straw. Her army stint is up and Joan decides not to re-enlist and she heads home to her mother. Bilko is heartbroken and using all his cunning and guile he sets out to win back Joan's affections. 


The Big Manhunt (Air Date - 15 Oct 1957 - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Robert Gist, Sam Schwartz, Joe Brown Jnr, Burt Freed, Otto Hulett, Eddie Hanley and Kay Lyder 

Bilko's old army pal Red Thompson, whose life Bilko saved during the war, launches a search for Ernie. Red wants to thank Ernie for saving his life by offering him a share in his diamond mine.


Bilko's Double Life (Air Date - 22 Oct 1957 - Written by A J Russell & Sydney Zelinka)

Also starring - Heywood Hale Broun, John C Becher, Ann Flood, Eileen Letchworth, Grant Code, Wyrley Birch, Horace Cooper, Leonard Eliott, Eda Heinemann, James Kincaid, Charles Jordan, Henry Lasko, Paul Lipson, Ben Yaffee and Lee Krieger 

With everyone in Roseville after him for money Bilko heads to New York on furlough. Bilko is mistaken for millionaire socialite Herbert Penfield III. Meanwhile, Herbert Penfield III arrives in Roseville and as everyone assumes he's Bilko he's hounded by Bilko's creditors.


 Sgt. Bilko Presents (Air Date - 29 Oct 1957 - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Gordon Polk, Edward Andrews, Philippa Bevans, Nelson Olmsted, Darryl Richard, Alice Youman and Karin Wolfe 

Private Hugo Lockman is transferred to Fort Baxter. Lockman has written a play that the local junior high shool are producing. When someone remarks that the play is as good as the works of Tennessee Williams Bilko sees it as his chance to become a Broadway impressario.


Papa Bilko (Air Date - 05 Nov 1957 - Written by Billy Friedberg & Sydney Zelinka)

Also starring - Robert Webber, Fannie Lyde, Claudia Crawford and Madeline Morka 

When a young girl he befriended when he was stationed in France during World War II comes to Fort Baxter to see Bilko, he has trouble explaining just why she calls him 'Papa'. She's all grown-up now and soon catches the eye of Pvt.Pearly Johnson.


Bilko Talks In His Sleep (Air Date - 19 Nov 1957 - Written by Billy Friedberg, Terry Ryan & Phil Sharp)

Also starring - Virginia De Louse and Norman MacKay 

When Bilko starts talking in his sleep he unknowingly gives away the secrets of his scams to Grover and Ritzik. Bilko realises what he's been doing and decides to turn the tables on them by letting them believe he's not in the best of health.


Cherokee Ernie (Air Date - 26 Nov 1957 - Written by Arnie Rosen, Coleman Jacoby, Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Ira Lewis, David White, Wyley Hancock, James Reese, Scott Moore, Percy Verwayen and Kay Strozzi 

When Bilko is inducted into the Cherokee Indian tribe under the name of Bald Eagle he discovers a document that indicates that Oklahoma belongs to the Indians. Using his undoubted skills and his new-found Indian heritage Bilko sets out once again to make his fortune.


Bilko Buys A Club (- Air Date 3 Dec 1957 - Written by Terry Ryan & Phil Sharp)

Also starring - Harry Gresham, Jason Evers, John Boruff, Clifton James and Peter Turgeon 

Bilko is trying to set up a nightclub on the outskirts of Roseville and needs $750 to seal the deal. When he learns that one of the national guard contingent assigned to a two-week stint at Fort Baxter is involved in a multi-million dollar deal, all he has to do is work out which recruit it is....


Lieutenant Bilko (Air Date - 10 Dec 1957 - Written by Sydney Zelinka & A J Russell)

Also starring - John Boruff and Ralph Stantley 

Bilko's stint the in army is finally up and he decides it's time to strike out in the big wide business world. However when he learns that a temporary WWII commission was never rescinded he decides it's time to collect his back pay. But he soon learns that the grass is not always greener on the other side!


Bilko At Bay (Air Date - 17 Dec 1957 - Written by A J Russell, Terry Ryan & Sydney Zelinka)

Also starring - Dulcie Cooper, Henry Lasko, Philip Coolidge, Flip Mark, Frank Marth, Olga Fabian, Florence Dunlap and Frank Campanella 

Bilko, Rocco and Henshaw are heading to New York on furlough, trouble is they don't have a bank roll. They come up with an ingenious plan to visit the parents of the boys in the platoon and hopefully enjoy some home-cooked meals on the way. When they reach Mrs.Doberman's house they cross paths with some of her house-guests - a party of fishermen who just happen to be a gang of bank robbers in hiding.


Bilko F.O.B. Detroit (Air Date - 24 Dec 1957 - Written by Sydney Zelinka & A J Russell)

Also starring - Raymond Bramley, William Hickey, Jock MacGregor, Bert Thorn, Jack Davis and Skippy Colby 

Colonel Hall sends Bilko and his platoon to Detroit to pick up some army trucks under strict instruction to be back in two days. Bilko soon looks for as many excuses as he can to delay returning to Fort Baxter. He manages to persuade the president of the factory repairing the trucks to buy his latest scam -a Basic Training Kit designed to allow GI's to train at home thus saving the government millions of dollars.


Bilko & The Flying Saucers (Air Date - 31 Dec 1957 - Written by Coleman Jacoby & Arnie Rosen)

Also starring - Edward Andrews and Constance Ford 

Desperate to keep a date with the  beautiful Bonnie Morgan in Washington, Bilko dupes Major Lukens into believing that Fort Baxter is being visited by little green men from outer space. He suggests to the Major that perhaps it might be better if a motor pool sergeant reports the sighting direct to the brass at the Pentagon, giving him an excuse to go to Washington. However the Pentagon send an investigator out to Fort Baxter and Bilko is outmanoeuvered.


Bilko & The Colonel's Secretary (Air Date - 1 Jan 1958 - Written by Phil Sharp, Terry Ryan, A J Russell & Sydney Zelinka)

Also starring - Dorothy Stinnette, Joan Holloway, Suzanne Storrs, Mara McAfee,  Lester Mack, Grace Carney, John Cecil Holm, Ken McEwen and Nelson Olmsted

When the Colonel's secretary is reassigned, Bilko handpicks her replacement.  Hoping she'll be as easy a touch as the previous secretary Bilko arranges her transfer. However when she arrives at Fort Baxter, Cpl.Ripley is unhappy at being taken away from her true love. When she finds out it was Bilko who arranged the transfer she decides to take her revenge.


Doberman The Crooner (Air Date - 8 Jan 1957 - Written by Neil Simon)

Also starring - Jack Hartley, Nelson Olmsted and Alan Alda 

When Bilko hears a recording made by a mystery singer with a golden voice he sets out to find out who the voice belongs to. When it turns out that Doberman is the mystery singer he sets up an audition at a record company. Is Duane about to become the nation's next big thing?


Bilko Presents Kay Kendall (Air Date - 15 Jan 1957 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Kay Kendall, Dan Frazer, Marlo Lewis, John Wray and Ray Bloch 

When movie star Kay Kendall visits Roseville whilst promoting her latest film, Bilko gets her to agree to appear in a show he's producing. Bilko's hoping to make a bundle of dough but Miss Kendall soon proves to be more than a match for the wily sergeant.


Bilko's Cousin (Air Date - 24 Jan 1958 - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Dick Van Dyke, William Hickey, Truman Smith, Catherine Payne, Bob Hastings and Howard Wierum 

Bilko's cousin Swifty arrives at Fort Baxter. But far from being a sharp conniver like his cousin, Swifty proves to be a true innocent. Bilko realises that Swifty won't survive as a regular GI so sets about trying to get Swifty into Officer's Training School.


Bilko's Pigeons (Air Date - 31 Jan 1958 - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Ralph Dunn, George Clark, Pug Flanagan, Philip Faversham and Bob Hastings 

Bilko has been using Fort Baxter's carrier pigeons as racing birds. When the Pentagon orders that the birds are no longer to be used to send messages Bilko sees an opportunity to make money by selling them. Has his fortune finally come home to roost?


Cyrano De Bilko (Air Date - 11 Feb 1958 - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Earl Rowe, Kay Medford, Lee Merriweather, Norman MacKay and Tim Herbert 

Bilko writes a letter on behalf of Pvt.Harold Westrum to a young lady in Roseville. However Bilko soon finds himself in trouble when he proposes marriage to a woman he doesn't love.


The Colonel's Reunion (Air Date - 17 Feb 1958 - Written by Coleman Jacoby & Arnie Rosen)

Also starring - Howard St John, Madeline Clive and George Kennedy 

Colonel Hall orders an all-out ban on gambling at Fort Baxter so Bilko arranges for the Colonel to attend a reunion, meaning he'll be off-base for a few days. However when Bilko learns that the Colonel's comrades hold him up as an object of ridicule he steps in to make them see the Colonel in a different light.


Bilko Saves Ritzik's Marriage (Air Date - 22 Feb 1958 CBS - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Walter Greaza and Frank Dekova 

After an all-night poker session Rupert Ritzik misses his 15th Wedding Anniversary and his marriage to Emma is in trouble when she leaves him. Feeling guilty Bilko decides to do everything in his power to reunite the warring couple.


Bilko, The Art Lover (Air Date - 5 Mar 1958 - Written by Phil Sharp & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Alan Alda, Larry Fletcher, Henry Lasko, Nelson Olmsted, Eddie Lawrence and Art Ford 

Bilko is acting strangely, barking orders at the platoon and demanding they work hard. The doctor diagnoses that Bilko is suffering from nerves and orders him on a two-week furlough. Bilko wangles an invite to an old platoon member's mansion. His old pal Carlyle Thompson is the heir to a million-dollar fortune but has fallen out with his father and it's up to Bilko to act as peacemaker.


Bilko, The Genius (Air Date - 14 Mar 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - John Boruff, Archie Smith, David Sheiner, Philip Foster, Mason Adams, George Kennedy, Frank Campanella, Paul Lipson and Alfred Sandor 

Bilko is mistakenly declared a  genius and is tranferred to a special camp of high- IQ intellectuals to work on secret projects. It's not long before he introduces them to the science of gambling.


Bilko, Male Model (Air Date - 19 Mar 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Frederic Tozere, Erik Rhodes, Dean Almquist, David White, Sandy Kenyon, Peter G Benzoni and Jack Collins 

Bilko is spotted by a New York advertising agency after his 'common, friendly face' catapults him into the society papers. The agency want him to front their ad campaign for a new smoking jacket.


The Colonel's Inheritance (Air Date - 4 Apr 1958 - Written by Phil Sharp,Terry Ryan & Paul Jordan)

Also starring - Henry Lasko, Paul Lipson, John Graham, Robert Dryden and John Marley 

When Colonel Hall inherits $5000 he's keen to keep it out of Bilko's greedy clutches. He sends the money direct to the bank under escort by two MP's. Bilko sends Roccco and Henshaw, dressed as MP's, to pick up the money and is soon flashing the Colonel's cash around town!


Bilko's Honeymoon (Air Date - 11 Apr 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Gretchen Wyler, Norwood Smith and Will Hussung 

Dino Paparelli wins an unusaul prize - a two-week honeymoon in Miami. Bilko convinces Paparelli to pose as a woman in order for the pair of the to cash-in on the all-expenses paid vacation. However the 'happy couple' are in for a surprise when John and Nell Hall turn up at the same hotel.


Bilko's Chinese Restaurant (Air Date - 25 Apr 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - John Lee, Mark Sako, Jason Evers, Joseph Sullivan and Jack Davis 

Bilko discovers that the father of one of his latest recruits owns ten Chinese restaurants. Keen to make the most of a golden opportunity Bilko unveils plans to open his own Chinese restaurant. Noticing the huge quantities of Chinese ingredients being ordered by Sgt.Ritzik the Pentagon decide to send Bilko and his platoon to the island of Macoochi.


Operation Love (Air Date - 30 Apr 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen, Coleman Jacoby & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Peggy Cass, Grant Code, Danny Dayton and Plhiippa Bevans

Bilko's gambling nights are a huge success and the WAC's of Fort Baxter are not happy about the amount of time their husbands and boyfriends are spending gambling with Bilko. The girls fight back by transferring away from Fort Baxter and with a matter of weeks there are no WAC's on the post. Ernie must find a way to save the day.


Bilko's TV Pilot (Air Date - 6 May 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Wynn Pearce, Danny Dayton, Jane Dulo, Parker McCormick, Hubbell Robinson and Alexander Scourby 

Bilko's latest recruit is Montana Morgan, a genuine US cowboy! Loud and raucous Morgan makes friends with Doberman and when Duane sends a picture of himself and Morgan to CBS, the network ask for a meeting. Bilko is shocked to discover that the executives are interested not in Montana Morgan but Duane Doberman. Bilko shoots a Western TV pilot with Duane Doberman as his leading man.


Bilko Retires From Gambling (Air Date - 13 May 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen, Coleman Jacoby & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Danny Dayton, George Kennedy, Paul Draylen and Fred Stewart 

Determined to stamp out gambling at Fort Baxter Colonel Hall hires a card shark who takes Bilko to the cleaners. Stripped of his confidence Bilko turns into a shadow of his former self and morale at Fort Baxter reaches an all-time low. When Bilko learns the truth about the card shark he sets out for revenge!


Bilko's Vacation (Air Date - 23 May 1958 - Written by Terry Ryan & Neil Simon)

Also starring - Betty Walker, Joe Leon, Fred Stewart and George Kennedy

The camp doctor orders Colonel Hall to take a vacation. He also recommends that the Colonel give Sgt.Bilko and his platoon a furlough. Bilko makes a deal with Dimmeldorf's Lodge and suckers both the platoon and Colonel and Mrs.Hall  into vacationing there too.


Bilko's Insurance Company (Air Date - 30 May 1958 - Written by Arnie Rosen & Coleman Jacoby)

Also starring - Orson Bean, Rain Winslow, Danny Dayton and Russell Hardie 

Bilko sets up his own insurance company at Fort Baxter. But his 'maternity benefits' policy which includes a multiple births clause goes disastrously wrong.


Bilko's Prize Poodle (Air Date - 3 Jun 1958 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Bruce Evans, Don De Leo, Barnard Hughes, Edith King, Roy Monsell and Diana Deer 

When Doberman's penpal announces she's getting married Duane is heartbroken. Bilko treats Doberman to a night on the town to try and cheer him up. Duane spends the money on a poodle instead. When the dog's pedigree papers arrive Bilko enters her into the annual dog show.


Bilko's School Days  (Air Date - 10 Jun 1958 - Written by Neil Simon & Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Frank Marth and Diana Deer 

Bilko sees the chance to make big money when 1,500 MP's arrive at Fort Baxter for training. Bilko signs up for MP training and it doesn't take long before he knows every rule in the book. He puts a plan to 'clean-up' Fort Baxter into operation.


Joan's Big Romance (Air Date - 24 Jun 1958 - Written by Terry Ryan)

Also starring - Richard Derr, Betty Benet, Jane Dulo and Sammy Cahn 

Joan Hogan leaves Fort Baxter on furlough. Upset at the brush-off she gets from Ernie she decides to teach him a lesson. When a picture of her and playboy socialite Randy Vandermeer appears in the national papers Bilko is distraught and he sets out to win back Joan's heart.


The Phil Silvers Show - Season Three Gallery


Bilko's Merry Widow                   Bilko's Boys Town                     Hillbilly Whiz


Bilko's Valentine                        The Big Manhunt                      Bilko's Double Life


Sgt.Bilko Presents                     Papa Bilko                                Bilko Talks In His Sleep


Cherokee Ernie                         Bilko Buys A Club                       Bilko At Bay


Bilko F.O.B. Detroit                    Bilko & The Flying Saucers          Bilko & The Colonel's Secretary


Doberman The Crooner              Bilko Presents Kay Kendall           Bilko's Cousin


Bilko's Pigeons                          Cyrano De Bilko                        The Colonel's Reunion


Bilko Saves Ritzik's Marriage        Bilko The Art Lover                    Bilko The Genius


Bilko, Male Model                       The Colonel's Inheritance           Bilko's Honeymoon


Bilko's Chinese Restaurant          Operation Love                         Bilko's TV Pilot


Bilko Retires From Gambling         Bilko's Vacation                        Bilko's Insurance Company


Bilko's Prize Poodle                    Bilko's School Days                    Joan's Big Romance