Monday, August 29, 2011

Waltons 4.4: “The Prophecy”

Airdate: 10/2/75

John Walton’s inability to spin a half-dollar reminds that he’s growing older, and his upcoming twenty-fifth high school reunion has him wondering how much of a success he’s made with his life. John-Boy, too, gets an earful of reality from one of his professors, who informs him that very few writers have been able to support themselves solely by their writing. When Eula Mae, John’s former classmate, arrives to round up attendees for the reunion, she discovers there is no venue for the event, leading Olivia to volunteer the Walton house (much to John’s chagrin) to host the gala. As everyone has a grand old time, another classmate, Cathcart James Ray, who ostensibly has is it all, leads a tribute to John, whom he always envied for his accomplishments, and still does. The entire party reflects on their own lives, singing “’Till We Meet Again.”

Heavy guest cast and sharp teleplay bolsters this episode, featuring another well-worn TV trope: the class reunion that causes its participant to wonder if his life has been what he expected; the answer is always no, but still successful.

Odd title: doesn’t it suggest some kind of supernatural offering, rather than a show about a reunion?

Timeframe note: Reference to Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind and John’s 25th reunion of the class of 1911 places this show at about the spring of 1936.

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