The Waltons

Season 9 Episode 27

A Walton Wedding

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Feb 12, 1995 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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out of 10
37 votes
  • A Lack of Grandkids on Walton's Mountain

    Another reunion movie, but with a very different feel to the last one, thanks largely to the much smaller cast. There's no update on what the various Waltons have been up to. Instead, the spotlight falls wholly on John, Olivia and John-boy. The younger siblings are there in support, but only Ben gets anything resembling a subplot. Jim Bob and Jason get barely a line between them. It's like watching Season One, only with grown ups instead of children.

    The story sees John-boy attempt to fend off Janet's interfering aunt ahead of their wedding. Richard Thomas is as sound as ever, though he desperately needs a haircut, and Holland Taylor is great as Aunt Flo (I have no idea how that name got past the producers).

    At the same time, our hero is writing a magazine article about his family. He finds out his grandma is ashamed of her father, and is desperate to find out why, even if it means upsetting her. This pushiness to get to the truth is excellent continuity of character, and brings to mind 'The Boondoggle' and 'The Hiding Place'.

    There are a couple of subplots. I mentioned Ben. For the second film running, he is at loggerheads with John about the business. We've been here and done this several times, and frankly I'd pay to see them spend a quiet day working together. Olivia, meanwhile, goes back to college and meets a sexist tutor. It's mildly interesting, but the sexist tutor was done in 'The Pledge'. Other than Jason, all the men are a bit thicker round the middle than we're used to, though Jim Bob has lost weight since the last film (he was a right porker in 'Thanksgiving Reunion'). I'm still loving Drew.

    What really lets things down is the utter lack of extended family members. Not only do Cindy, Paul and Jonesy not appear, but there's no mention of them whatsoever, nor of any of the grandkids. It's as if they never existed. In a show about family, this is a really peculiar decision. It's not as if this is a standalone story either: John's role as County Supervisor, Drew's job at the mill and Toni's pregnancy are all rolled forward from last time. 'The Changeling' and 'The Tempest' may get all the headlines, but for me, this is a serious wtf? moment.

    The wedding itself is nicely done, though having Toni give birth in the vestry brings possibly more drama than is needed. It kind of steals the bride and grooms' thunder. I did like the ending, with J&J rowing off across Drucilla's Pond. Would have been a lovely ending for the series. I wonder if they'll have a shivaree.

    As a standalone episode, the action is quite entertaining. The problem is, we're not in the middle of a series. This is a reunion, and as such, it leaves you feeling slightly short-changed.

    Pick of the bunch: John-boy Walton (Richard Thomas)

    Alternate title: The Quilting

    Score: 8.3

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