Surprising Facts About Rhoda Morgenstern's Historic Wedding on 'Rhoda'

October 28, 2014 6:30 PM

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Forty years ago, on Oct. 28, 1974, 52 million viewers tuned in to watch Rhoda Morgenstern marry Joe Gerard on the TV show Rhoda. Audiences knew and loved Rhoda as Mary Richards' self-deprecating upstairs single neighbor on the Mary Tyler Moore Show. Before Rhoda and Joe were married, the Rhoda spinoff which starred Valerie Harper in the title role had only been on for seven episodes. And yet the hour-long television episode became one of the highest rated TV shows (that is until 1977 when the TV miniseries Roots came along). In fact, the wedding show was the second most watched episode in TV history. (The first being when Lucy gave birth to Little Ricky in 1953.)

The episode which featured Rhoda in her wedding gown and veil traipsing around the streets of the Bronx and Manhattan, became a true phenomenon. An endless stream of wedding gifts from engraved plates to toasters (along with thousands of "Congratulations Rhoda and Joe" cards) poured into CBS studios...

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