Cousin Arvel Nelson
Cousin Arvel
Gabe Dell as Cousin Arvel Nelson
Vital characteristics:
Species: Human
Rank/Title (If any): None
Alias(es): Cousin Arvel
Nickname(s): None
Gender Male
Height: 5'10"
Weight: 165 lbs.
Hair color: Brown
Eyes Green
Age: 40-45
Nationality: White
Date of birth: Dallas, TX, U.S.
Died: ????
Died in: ????
Family/Personal information:
Related to: Mrs. Nelson (aunt), Anthony Nelson (cousin)
About: Is able to persuade Jeannie into backing his chili recipe, which she immediately blinks on the shelves of all the local grocery stores, with Tony's image on them
Character information
Appeared on/in: I Dream of Jeannie
Number of episodes: Series finale (Season 5)
First appeared in: "My Master, the Chili King" (Season 5)
Last appeared in: N/A, one time appearance
Portrayed by Gabriel Dell

Cousin Arvel Nelson, the cousin of Tony Nelson, appears in the Season 5 episode of I Dream of Jeannie titled "My Master, the Chili King", which is also the series' final episode. The part of Cousin Arvel is played by veteran film and television actor and former "Dead End Kid" and "Bowery Boy" Gabriel Dell.

About Cousin Arvel

When Cousin Arvel, Tony's huckster cousin, arrives in Cocoa Beach from Texas with the intent to hawk his latest sales pitch to his cousin. Ever the one to try to make a fast buck, he is able to sell a ring which claims was a 24-karat Square Sapphire, which he claims to be "The only one East of the Mississippi," to Roger, whom he ran into in the Camp Edwards Air Base parking lot.

While looking for Tony, who is tipped off to Arvel's arrival by Roger, Arvel also runs into Jeannie, whom he is able to sell onto his latest scheme, to get Tony to back him financially to launch his Texas Chili recipe, which he wants to call Cousin Tony's Texas Chili, which he wants to sell in all the regional grocery stores. What he doesn't realize is that Jeannie, as a genie, can quickly blink cans of the delicious chili into all the stores, which is exactly what she does...Only thing is that, in doing so, without contacting the store merchants, who all of a sudden, have a product on the shelves which they couldn't explain as to how they got there, find that customers are buying the product in droves, Arvel isn't able to cash in a commission in pitching the product to them!

Arvel has to explain to Jeannie that simply placing the product in the stores without demanding a commission on them "isn't's giving it away!" as he gets her to go with him to all the local merchants, who can't explain how the chili got on their shelves, and ask to get paid the commission that Arvel is seeking.

At the same time, it seems to get Tony in a mess of trouble, because the cans, which Jeannie blinked into existence, all have his image, complete in his astronaut uniform, emblazoned on the front of them with the caption Cousin Tony's Texas Chili, which is a violation of Air Force Regulations to have an officer to advertise a product in the civilian sector!

When Jeannie is able to, at the desperate behest of Tony, to blink the cans from existence after an angry General Schaefer calls for all, including Arvel and Jeannie and the Mess Sergeant, to meet with him in his office along with the two boxes of Cousin Tony's Texas Chili that she blinked into the Mess kitchen stock room, which she turned into a box of grapes, Arvel, who sold Roger a ring which turned out to be a pastie, is able to con him again into buying a cufflink to go with the ring, as well for 35 more dollars!