The Andy Griffith Show (1960–1968)
2 user

The Lucky Letter 

Barney gets a chain letter that predicts bad luck it he doesn't make copies and send them to friends. To prove to Andy that he's not superstitious, he doesn't send any. A constant stream of... See full summary »


Richard Powell (as Richard M. Powell)




Episode cast overview:
Andy Griffith ... Andy Taylor
Ron Howard ... Opie Taylor (as Ronny Howard)
Don Knotts ... Barney Fife
Howard McNear ... Floyd Lawson
Betty Lynn ... Thelma Lou
George Lindsey ... Goober Pyle


Barney gets a chain letter that predicts bad luck it he doesn't make copies and send them to friends. To prove to Andy that he's not superstitious, he doesn't send any. A constant stream of back luck is the result. Things look bad when he has a marksmanship test coming up, which he has to pass in order to keep his job. Written by Ronny Bailey

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Family


Did You Know?


Once Barney starts having "bad luck" any time the letter or luck is mentioned there is a rapid beeping sound in the sound track of this episode. This was probably meant to act in a subliminal way; either as an implication of menace, or just to irritate and thereby induce emotion.(This is incorrect, the only sound on the track is "spooky" music, the same as in "Opie's Wish.") See more »


Deputy Barney Fife: I am not superstitious and who says I believe in chain letters; I just don't mess around with them that's all.
Sheriff Andy Taylor: Superstition!
Deputy Barney Fife: Now here's where we come to a matter of terms; you call it superstition, I call it caution!
See more »

User Reviews

Mayberry chain gang
7 July 2018 | by elbgaSee all my reviews

Midway through season five here's Floyd egging Barney on into believing, once again, that forces outside nature are in control of our destinies. Theirs is an interesting relationship -- they seem to like each other all right, and yet Floyd can push Barney's buttons to get him riled up, like the way Andy, according to Barney, gets a kick out of making him mad to see that vein in his neck stick out. The writers include a nice reference to the earlier story about the the genie's lamp and Opie's three wishes, and they even get in a sly plug from Goober for "Gomer Pyle, USMC." The funniest line might be Barney's crack about Mrs. Hudgens's weight problem after the boys find her shopping list at the town garbage dump. And we're not surprised to learn that Barney, a womanizer if only in his own mind, has a subscription to what would have been Playboy in the real world at that time. What male teen didn't appreciate a fast lens back then! The producers must have liked the set serving as the dump since they kept it around for the later episode about Opie's newspaper. TAGS has its moments of subtle humor, as it does here when Andy and Opie are on the front porch and Andy wonders aloud where Barney has got off to on the eve of the pistol qualifying. He muses that he can't think like Barney does, and almost immediately he realizes that the key to finding him is sitting next to him on the porch -- subtle and very funny. And when Frank at the diner answers Barney's call to Juanita, the joke is that, for a second, Barney doesn't realize it's a man's voice, and we're left to create our own mental picture of the never-seen waitress . It brings to mind Barney's unflattering review of one of the diner's specials that features a chicken that in his estimation must have done a lot of flying. Finally, something that didn't translate to his special appearances in the last three seasons, Don Knotts was a master at conveying his feelings and getting laughs with his eye movements, especially whenever he was caught trying to get away with something or attempting to hide his many faults. For example, here he sits behind the typewriter copying the lucky letter, and suddenly, his eyes moving side to side in close-up, he catches on to Andy's tone of mild reproach about not distancing himself from the childish thinking of people like Goober and Floyd. You don't see much of this subtlety in the color episodes in which Knott's acting often borders on clownishness. It's as if he thought that for color film he needed to ramp up the character's antics to compete with a more vibrant Mayberry. Unfortunately, he only did a disservice to a beloved character.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 2 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.






Release Date:

25 January 1965 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Mayberry Enterprises See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed