All in the Family

Season 7 Episode 15

The Draft Dodger

Aired Unknown Dec 25, 1976 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
49 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

The Draft Dodger
The clash of two worlds explodes in this episode. Mike's friend is a Draft Dodger and he has come down from Canada for a visit and joins the Bunkers for Christmas dinner, unbeknownst to Archie. The guy is exactly everything Archie hates about Mike's generation. On top of this, Archie's joker friend is also spending Christmas dinner with the Bunkers and he lost his son to the war.moreless

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  • Brilliant!

    Amazing performance by O'Connor. He actually says "God Damn War" although it was later censored and overdubbed so we hear "Rotten war.." but you can clearly read Archie's lips as O'Connor says "I don't want to talk about that God Damn war no more!"

    You can actually feel the astonishment of the stunned audience. O'Connor's most brilliant moment of the series by far.

    Too bad the censored version is still the only one we see, although I hope the DVD version gets it right.moreless
  • This show dealt with how the conservative Archie Bunker handles having a draft dodger in his midst.Archie's friend is also there,and his son did go to Vietnam but he never made it home.See how the father handles the situation as compared to Archie.moreless

    This television show really faced a lot of serious matters during its run, and it did an excellent job of dealing with the Vietnam issue. I have to say that it was very eerie to listen to this today because if it weren't for the part about the draft, the scene could have been written for today's time, if you know what I'm talking about. It was great to see how Archie didn't know how to handle having to face somebody who was on the complete opposite end of the spectrum in his beliefs and who was not afraid to stand up to Archie.moreless
  • Archie celebrates Christmas with a draft dodger, as well as a Gold Star father.

    Again, tough to choose favorite episodes, but this one clearly deserves recognition among the best. All hell breaks loose when Archie discovers Mike's buddy David is a draft dodger, sneaking down for Christmas from Canada. One of my favorite moments is when Pinky Peterson (the Gold Star father) shakes hands with David and tells him his son would have wanted to sit down to dinner with him, and that's what he (Pinky) wants to do as just see how tough it must be on him as a dad. Shortly thereafter, Archie still can't return to the table to face him, and Edith finally coaxes him by saying, "Please Archie...for me?" He looks at her, and slowly makes his way back to the table.

    Also, love in the final scene when Archie reluctantly thanks the Christmas carollers outside his door, then mildly threatens to call the cops on them. He then shuts the front door, which is adorned with a wreath that reads PEACE.moreless
Jean Stapleton

Jean Stapleton

Edith Bunker

Rob Reiner

Rob Reiner

Michael Stivic (1971-1978)

Sally Struthers

Sally Struthers

Gloria Stivic (1971-1978)

Carroll O'Connor

Carroll O'Connor

Archie Bunker

Renny Temple

Renny Temple

David Brewster

Guest Star

Eugene Roche

Eugene Roche

Pinky Peterson

Guest Star

Liz Torres

Liz Torres

Teresa Betancourt

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

  • QUOTES (5)

    • Teresa: (to David) Here, come let me show you around! (takes him under the mistletoe and kisses him full on the lips)
      Archie: (protesting, then making a pained face) Aw, geez them people are so hot.

    • Gloria: What's the matter, Daddy, doesn't God understand Spanish?
      Archie: Oh, sure...God understands four or five languages, it's just that Spanish isn't what you call His first.
      (Gloria makes a face)
      Archie: Aw, don't give me the constipated face! The Bible was started by Adam and Eve, not Desi and Charro!

    • Edith: (trying to convince Archie to rejoin everyone at the table after the tense exchange) You heard what Pinkie said, Archie. Now you should do the same.
      (Archie resists)
      Edith: Please, Archie? For me? (He looks at her for a moment, then slowly turns back to the table)

    • David: [shakes hands with Pinky] David Brewster. Hello.
      Pinky: Hello son.

    • [Everybody is seated at the Bunker dinner table for Christmas Eve.]
      Archie: Whenever I ask him what he's doing up in Canada, they're acting like he's a deserter from the Army or something, is that right?
      David: No, sir, I'm not a deserter.
      Archie: Well, I didn't think you was.
      David: I'm a draft dodger.
      Archie: [to Edith after a long pause] What did he say?
      Edith: He said he was a draft dodger. Well, c'mon everybody, eat, eat!
      Archie: [to David after the others resume eating] You mean a draft dodger from the Selective Service of the U. S. of A.?
      David: Yes, sir!
      Archie: Edith, uh, hey Edith, hey, hey Edith, uh, I mean, before you start eating over there, Edith, did you hear this over here? [Edith looks at him.] Draft dodger? Fugitive of justice, you know? FBI? How would you like the FBI to have dinner over here?
      Edith: [almost absent-mindedly] Oh Archie, we ain't got enough turkey.
      Archie: Wait a minute! Hey!! I don't want nobody to touch no food here 'til I get a explanation of this!
      Gloria: Daddy, David doesn't owe you or anyone at this table any explanations!
      Archie: He owes explanations to the Army, the Navy, the Marine Corps, the Commander-in-Chief of the U. S. of A., the President!
      Mike: [vehemently] Will you put the flag away? It's Christmas, not the 4th of July!!
      David: I wrote to the President about it, Mr. Bunker! He just couldn't come up with as many reasons for killing people as I could for not killing them.
      Archie: What do you know about that? [to Pinky after long pause] How do you like that Pinky? Huh? We got a draft dodger here who writes a snotty letter to the Commander-in-Chief. I mean, what the hell do you do with that?
      David: Look, Mr. Bunker, I don't want to spoil your Christmas dinner, so maybe I should go.
      Edith: Oh no, David!
      Gloria: You're not spoiling anything! [to Archie as Archie gets up and walks toward David at the other end of the table] Don't let him go, don't make him go!!
      Archie: Certainly he's gotta go, what are you talkin' about? If the FBI was to find him here, we could all be having Christmas dinner in the hooscow!
      Gloria: Daddy it's Christmas Eve! Now don't go making a big crisis out of this!
      Mike: [slams his napkin on the table and gets up] Look! Arch!! What David did took a lot of guts!!
      Archie: [to Mike] What do you mean a lot of guts?
      David: [in frustration] My own father doesn't understand, why should he?
      Mike: [very loudly to Archie] When the hell are you going to admit that the war was wrong?
      Archie: [as lividly, vehemently and loudly as he can get] I ain't talking about that war - I don't wanna talk about that ROTTEN DAMN WAR NO MORE!! I'M TALKIN' ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE!!! And what he done was WRONG! CERTAINLY he will go! What do you think, the whole people of this country can say whether or not they wanna go to war?? You couldn't get a decent war off the ground that way! All the young people would say no, sure they would, 'cause they don't want to get killed! And that's why we leave it to the Congress, 'cause them old crocks ain't gonna get killed?? And they're gonna do the right thing and get behind the President, and vote Yes!
      Pinky: Arch, if my opinion is of any importance. . .
      Archie: Certainly your opinion has importance. Gold Star Father! Your opinion has more importance than anybody else in this room, and I wanna hear that opinion, and I want these young people here to hear that opinion! Now you tell them, Pinky, you tell them!
      Pinky: I understand how you feel, Arch. My kid hated the war, too. But he did what he thought he had to do, and David here did what he thought he had to do. But David's alive to share Christmas dinner with us! And if Steve were here, he'd want to sit down with him. And that's what I want to do. [Audience applauds.] Merry Christmas, David. [They shake hands.]
      David: Merry Christmas, sir.
      [Audience applauds as everybody sits back down while Archie is stunned.]

  • NOTES (4)

    • This episode was videotaped on November 19, 1976.

    • This is Eugene Roche's second appearance as Pinky Peterson. He had previously appeared earlier in Season 7 in "Beverly Rides Again."

    • Archie says he doesn't want to hear about "That God Damn war no more" ... they dub over "God" with "Rotten"

    • I noticed that in this episode that Archie's speech (when he blows up after discovering that the guest is a draft dodger) is edited. If you watch closely to his lips, they "dubbed" a certain part of it because possible he said something that the network wanted "removed".


  • 10:00 pm
    48 Hours