The Andy Griffith Show

Season 8 Episode 2

Howard the Bowler

Aired Monday 9:30 PM Sep 18, 1967 on CBS

Episode Recap

On the eve of the big Mayberry Vs Mt. Pilot bowling tournament, the Mayberry Rollers find themselves with an empty shirt. The third member of their team is called away to Atlanta on business.

Desperate to find a suitable replacement, Andy, Goober and the team's sponsor, Emmet Clark, do a little brainstorming. Despite putting off Howard, whose game has improved but still doesn't quite bowl up to their standards, Andy convinces Goober and Emmet to let Howard join the team for the tournament.

It turns out that not only has Howard's game improved (thanks in no small part to a rather methodical routine for throwing the ball), but Howard single handedly wins the game by tossing strike after strike. By the time they get down to the final frames, the game is on ice and the real wonder is whether or not Howard can pull off a perfect game. Three frames from perfection, Goober and Emmet get in on a little side bet with the members of the Mt. Pilot team, ten dollars to forty that Howard can't pull it off. Confident as ever, Howard throws his tenth and eleventh consecutive strike. He confidently picks up his ball for the final throw, sets up, and just as he's about the deliver the ball, the lights go out!

Thanks to Goober's suggest that they turn up the AC, a power circuit is blown, leaving Howard unable to finish him game that night. Later that evening, sitting in Andy's kitchen, Goober, Opie, Aunt Bee, and Howard discuss the improbability and long odd of bowling a perfect game. All this talk gets into Howard's head and he is unable to sleep that night, convinced that what he's only one throw away from achieving can't really be done.

The next evening, Howard is a mess. After recovering from a headache, Howard takes a couple of practice throws and gutterballs both. Realizing the streak is over, Andy convinces the Mt. Pilot bowlers to call off the bet. Goober and Emmet thank Andy for his intervention that saved them from not only losing the best but losing ten dollars. Relieved and with no pressure, Howard takes his final throw, right down the middle, STRIKE!