The Ropers

Season 1 Episode 5

Family Planning

Aired Tuesday 10:00 PM Apr 10, 1979 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (2)

Write A Review
out of 10
19 votes
  • 70's tv feel

    If you have your finger on the pulse of 70's tv, you will recognize some of these themes of adults with real life responsibities, difficulties with family, and drama that comes up with ordinary life. There are no musical montages, spell casting, zany hijinx or glitzy silk costumes. The 70's revolutionized tv, giving it a worn, gritty, realistic feel.

    In this way, Family Planning fits into the theme with a splash of silly and fun. Helen, Hilda and Ethel are forced to look into plans for their mom's golden years.

    Stanley detests all of Helen's family, and his main goal is to keep them all at distance without being too obvious. He would say anything to get Helen's mom to anywhere other than the condo. In the rec room, Helen's dottering mother steals the show when it turns out she has the skill to best him at pool in the rec room. But it turns out Helen's mom's faulty memory bites Stanley.

    While all the other relatives argue about where mother should live, no sister is taking responsibility. Meanwhile, Helen makes a stand shaming her sisters for not wanting mother, who has given them best years of their lives.

    Meanwhile, Stanley's eyes are agog when mother reveals to him over a game of pool in the rec room she has her own solution to where she wants to live. She has a letter from her brother in New Zealand and a plane ticket to go live with him.

    Stanley attempts to parade his generosity back at his home where the family meeting is taking place. He volunteers His home for mother, knowing she has a better resolution. But it is not to be. Mother has forgotten that her brother is long deceased and the invitation is years old.

    There is a subplot involving Jeffrey's reaction to David's black eye from a school tough. Jeffrey's solution is to teach David boxing.
  • Good family humor

    This episiode was about Helen's family deciding who would take care of their forgetful mother. Decent subplot as Jeffrrey, giving his son a boxing lesson, gets a black eye from his son. This episode stands out, with the hilarious conclusion. Stanley, thinking his mother-in -law will be leaving, announces to his in laws and Helen he wants his mother-in-law to stay with Helen and himself, underestimating his mother-in-laws memory. Everybody's reaction makes Stanley seem like the selfless hero, but the viewer knows Stanley and his manipulation, which leads to a funny conclusion.