Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Waltons 9.16: “The Pursuit”

Airdate: 1/1/81

A young woman named Kathy is tracing down Jim-Bob, completely in love with him – but he feelings aren’t mutual. Evidently this was a one-night-stand before Jim Bob was to ship out overseas from Norfolk (which didn’t happen), and Kathy now claims she’s pregnant with his child. When Jim-Bob responsibly proposes marriage, Mary Ellen is dubious, and Kathy fesses up she’s not pregnant after all – and presumably couldn’t be either. Elsewhere, Jason gets reassigned to Paris to work as a musical director with Toni, and Ben defies his Japanese captors by stringing up a homemade American flag on the 4th of July.

Now here’s the Waltons episode we’ve all been waiting for – JENNIFER JASON LEIGH is a guest star, at her prime, and the world will never be the same. And could it be that Jim-Bob, a Walton boy, had premarital sex? No, probably not, but the lasciviousness of it all, paired with the other romances going on here, made the series’ last season more lurid than it had ever been before. Well, after all, it is the era of Dallas and Dynasty now. One can only wonder what Livy would’ve thought.

Again – JENNIFER JASON LEIGH? (Sorry to scream.) How in the world would gawky Jim-Bob turn her down? How could his portrayer, David W. Harper, not be “excited” during their kissing scenes? (Well, maybe he was.) Again, getting a girl with modest good looks could have made this a more credible episode. But JENNIFER JASON LEIGH?

BTW: POW subplot is taken right from The Bridge on the River Kwai. No complaints, though. It’s one of my favorite movies.

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