7th Heaven

Season 8 Episode 1

The Long Bad Summer (1)

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Sep 15, 2003 on The CW
out of 10
User Rating
63 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

The Camdens are on what is most likely the most depressing family vacation of their lives at their beach house. Simon is crushed after unintentionally "killing" a classmate in a car accident. As everyone exhausts themselves trying to help him through, they all have problems and concerns of their own. Kevin and Lucy ponder whether or not they are ready to have children. Ruthie's boyfriend Peter starts spending increasing amounts of time with the Camdens, and he even tags along on their vacation. Ruthie learns a huge secret about Mary, and Simon's painful ordeal puts a strain on Eric and Annie's marriage.moreless

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  • Great season premiere!

    Simon hit a boy in his car and killed him. It turns out that Paul, the boy, was on drugs. Mary got married to Carlos. Lucy wasn’t pregnant after all. Simon goes to New York to see Matt. Paul’s parents want Simon to go to another school because Justin, Paul’s older brother, might do something stupid to Simon. Ruthie and Peter are going out. Chandler wants to marry Roxanne. Justin wrote, “Thou shalt not kill” on the church sign. I loved this episode! It was a good opener. I can’t believe that Mary married Carlos! I don’t think what Chandler and Roxanne are doing is right. They shouldn’t have sex before marriage. This was a great episode and it gets a 10!moreless
  • So sad........

    In this episode we finally find out what happended before the summer that made the officers come over to the camdens house. which was really sad for simon and the whole family. it also stunk since the past to years simons life was going down hill and this is like hitting rock bottom. the town is upset about what happened and the boys family is totlly upset about it. the family is trying to help simon but he is just turning away from them. he thinks he is the worst person and is turning away from Cecilia. so basically this who episode was really said.moreless
  • This episode in general was a little slow in parts but still very saisfying and a lot better than last years season premiere. This is especially due to characters being more likeable again (ie. Lucy).moreless

    Well, we're back! The season premiere of "7th Heaven" came and we finally got most of our questions answered this week from Mays' cliffhanger episode. This episode in general was a little slow in parts but still very saisfying and a lot better than last years season premiere. This is especially due to characters being more likeable again (ie. Lucy).

    Plus, it was really great that after 7 years of us knowing the Camdens they finally took a vacation and went somewhere new for a change-- that nice beach house. Unfortunatly, it had to be under bad circumstances, which brings Simon into play as we know he will be leaving soon. I gotta tell you, I never thought the writers would write in a Camden being involved in the death of someone through a car accident where they were partly responsible for. It just didn't seem likely but it sure does add a lot of drama, which I got to say is more of now this season than last-- and that's good.

    Let's get started....

    Eric and Annie: I love Eric! He really is back to full form and so is Annie. In fact, the best scene in this episode came from them when they were in the kitchen discussing Simon. It was so sad seeing both parents in agnst over their son and you could see it in their faces. Eric obviously subconciously thinks it's his fault for the accident when confronting Annie that if he went with them together to the pool hall and drove, this never would've happened but Annie wasn't thinking that at all. Although, Eric did come up with a good point (as he always does) that you have to focus on "what is" instead on what "could've" or "should've" if they want to get thorugh this with Simon. As for Annie she's just as upset but shows it by being in a mini-depression. You could tell by her sleeping a lot at the beach house and Eric doing his best to keep the family together without her. And when she was in the kitchen with Eric over why "didn't they make him wear a helmet?" was so sad. It's hard seeing people in pain.

    Simon: Poor Simon. I feel so bad for him. Some people would say he's sulking too much over this when it wasn't totally his fault and that it was an "accident" but most people have never been in his situation, so you really have no right to criticize. He feels responsible for killing this kid Paul because he knew he wasn't paying direct attention to the road completely when he hit him on his motorcycle. Although, maybe he'll feel better next week when Eric tells him that he was under the influence at the time and knew he wasn't solely responsible. Although I doubt it'll matter to him especially when he hears about Paul's brother Justin plastering "Thou Shalt Not Kill" on the church board.

    Lucy and Kevin: So Lucy isn't pregnant. I know some of you fans wanted her to be pregnant but I'm kind of glad she's not. She's a newlywed in college full time and if she's has the time to waitto wait to have kids, she should. Plus, let me go on the record and say she's more tolerable and back to herself than last years premiere episode--and if she got pregnant I know those mood swings would kick in again and that's the last I want from crazy Lucy for awhile. But then her and Kevin were doing that "re-affirming thing" as they might want a baby now, but I think they'll wait. Thank you writers.

    Ruthie and Peter: Ok, was I the only one a little annoyed by Peter in this episode. And I fear it will get worse as the season goes on. Even for little kids I got to say him and Ruthie are a little close, as they think they're boyfriend and girlfriend. Plus the kid is getting more nosy like Ruthie and I just don't like nosy people in families or friends of the family. Also, I'm sorry but Ruthie doesn't look like a teenager yet, despite the fact that she is. She looks like she's 9 or 10 when she's actually 12 or 13 I think. Plus, Peter thinking he can come in and out of everywhere around their house has me set a little off and I agreed with Eric with his hesitation of Peter going with Ruthie upstairs in her room and around the house as he wants. Where was his mother?

    Roxanne and Chandler: Both of them were really starting to grow on me last season (particularily towards the end) but this episode did no justice for them. They quite frankly bored me in their scenes when the came to the beach house and afterwards. Maybe it's because I was locked in more on Simon and his situation and who's pregnant. But the writers better juice them up more with some good storylines or my attention will go towards Simon and Mary's situation only. But from the spoilers I've read they're just about to do that so I'll hold on.

    Overall, this episode was great but slow. Or maybe I'm just saying that because I wanted the story to unravel faster so I know everything with Simon and who's pregnant! (but I have a few hunches, as I know some of you out there do too). I just can't wait till next week to hear about Mary and who's pregnant news all in one episode. But I'll bet you money both storylines are connected!

    Grade: **8.8 out of 10**

    Rants and Bits:

    * Catherine Hicks looks so much better with curly hair and looks to have lost a little weight. She doesn't look frumpy anymore like she did last year. She looks so much better!

    *Again, happy that Sam and David are getting their own lines more, but there's still some of that repeating each other still going on. Writers, it's not cute! Its a little creepy now! Stop it!

    *As we know David Gallagher (Simon) is leaving the show to pursue college. I'd like to go out and say eventhough I'll miss him and his character I support his decision 100%. Education is important, even more than being on a show.

    *Love the credits! But, Wow, there are so many people!

    *Ok, what happened to Happy in this episode? Where was she at and who took care of her?

    *Don't you have to be 18 years old to fly by yourself? I mean Simon just up and left to New York just like that!? I mean wouldn't security stop him at the gate? And where did he get that much money to fly?

    *I felt bad for those Smiths parents but how could they possibly blame Simon anymore after the autopsy report report when it was mainly his fault now? And can't they control their son Justin or what!?

    *When the Smiths came over where was Annie?moreless
Katie Mitchell

Katie Mitchell

Anne Smith

Guest Star

Mark Moses

Mark Moses

Don Smith

Guest Star

Marcia Wallace

Marcia Wallace


Guest Star

Christopher Michael

Christopher Michael

Detective Michaels

Recurring Role

Carlos Ponce

Carlos Ponce

Carlos Rivera

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (6)

    • When Ruthie is talking to Carlos on the front porch, the scene intercuts between shots of her and shots of him. If you notice, in some shots of Ruthie, her shirt covers her entire left shoulder; in others, it does not.

    • When Chandler and Roxanne were kissing on the beach Chandler's hand moved from Roxanne's ear to her low neck between the shots.

    • When Ruthie goes outside to return Peter's bag to him Carlos is outside and she talks with him. She never gives Peter his bag back.

    • After the twins had fallen asleep, Kevin said that he would warm up some soup for Eric. Then the next moment, he said that he would take the twins to bed, seemingly forgetting about the soup.

    • When Simon and Cecilia are talking on the beach, Cecilia's hair is in her eye. Then the next time they show her, we see that her hair is behind her ear.

    • The plotline that Simon was going to court for a wrongful death suit because the insurance company would not settle is flawed for several reasons: First, it would never happen in so short a time, just 3 to 4 months after the accident. Courts and lawyers move very slowly. A court date a year after the accident would be fast. Second, wrongful death lawsuits almost never happen unless there is a criminal conviction and Simon was apparently never charged. If Simon did not break any traffic law then there would be no case. Third, the accident victim was clearly negligent riding without a helmet, on drugs and apparently in Simon's lane and speeding.

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Peter: I'm just gonna go say good-bye to Ruthie. She was kind of quiet in church.
      Eric: Well, that's the way it's supposed to be...

    • Simon: I'm responsible for killing someone.

    • Lucy: Do you want to have a baby?
      Kevin: I need something Life affirming.
      Lucy: We all do...

    • Annie: We've been waiting all summer long to have a fight, so why don't we just have it now, while Simon is out of the house?
      Eric: Oh, so that's what you've been waiting for, for Simon to get out of the house. Couldn't you have just asked him to get out of the house so you could say to me whatever it is you wanted to say since May? I know what you wanted to say to me! You wanted to say it's my fault. That if I had left with the rest of the family that I would have been driving, and Paul Smith would still be alive. Isn't that what you wanted to say? That you blame me for this? What if I had been driving? What if I had killed Paul Smith? What if it never happened? If I had been driving, this never would've happened, right? Annie, we can't afford to play "what if". We have to stay with what is, and what is is our son was driving over the curve, and Paul Smith wasn't looking where he was going, and now...one life has changed forever, and one life is over. We're the lucky ones. Annie, we're the lucky ones. Simon's life may be changed forever, but he's still alive.
      Annie: (near tears) All I wanted to say was why couldn't those parents make sure their son was wearing a helmet?

  • NOTES (6)


    • Vandalism: Thou Shalt Not Kill

      The quote "Thou Shalt Not Kill" that was graffitied on the Camden's church board refers to one of the Ten Commandments of rules that God cast on the people of the Earth and was given to prophet Moses to teach.