I Love Lucy served as a cautionary tale of humanity’s capacity for sin—the pride, the avarice, and the envy that could cause an ordinary housewife to chase a showbiz career at the expense of her marriage, with the denial of those selfish dreams transforming her into a wrathful, wailing banshee. It’s a vision of a waking hell that still haunts generations of people, and particularly those who live in Lucille Ball’s hometown of Celoron, New York, where an artist has captured it all in one horrifying statue. And it’s a nightmare from which they’re now begging to be freed.
As reported by Yahoo News, local residents have gathered around a Facebook page called “We Love Lucy! Get Rid of This Statue” to complain about the work from artist Dave Poulin, who sculpted Ball in a scene from the classic “Vitameatavegamin” bit. That episode found Lucy drunk on her own power—and drunk on health tonic—in a way that Poulin has expertly depicted here, with Lucy’s eyes deranged and wild with rapacity, her teeth bared like she would consume your very soul for a spoonful of fame. She also sort of looks like Clint Howard, the most envious of Howard brothers.
But much as some scholars saw Hieronymous Bosch’s The Garden Of Earthly Delights as a poignant warning against sin, where others simply saw chimeras and grotesquerie, some townspeople don’t appreciate Lucy hanging around to scare the shit out of them.
“I think it looks like a monster. That is just my opinion,” said the campaign’s organizer—a Jamestown man who wishes to remain anonymous, presumably so when the Lucy statue comes alive at dusk to devour its enemies, it can’t find him. “When you see it at night, it is frightening.”
That man insists the statue should be replaced by another one that honors Ball’s “stunning beauty,” thus displaying the exact sort of sinful lust that it was created to warn him against. Still, it’s not so easy: Poulin has refused to even comment on his creation, wisely avoiding its revenge, while the Celoron mayor has said it would cost between $8,000 and $10,000 to have the statue recast. A fund has been set up to raise the money, though it’s unclear who among the people of Celoron would be brave enough to put their hand that close to Lucy’s mouth. Legend has it that all but the most virtuous will come away with nothing but a bloody stump and lots of ’splainin to do.