Well, this is pretty different to the opening episode so I have to give the writers credit for that. There's far more comedy in this hour and we get plenty of the character development that was missing last time round. For the first time, we see how puritanical Esther and Olivia are, and how the menfolk laugh it off - all very Spencer's Mountain.
We also learn that John-boy dreams of seeing the world and moving to the big city. I'm glad they stayed true to this for the remainder of the series and weren't tempted to have him marry a local lass and settle down in the next village.
The carnival characters were a little too likeable in my view. Obviously, they were always going to come good by the end of the story but I'd like to have seen them a little more furtive to begin with. That private show they did at the end seemed to go on forever.
The opening narration made me laugh: "Few strangers ever came to Walton's Mountain". Really? If Olivia had been paid for all the times she'd served meals to strangers in this series she'd be living in Aspen by now. I don't know how Flossie Brimmer stayed in business!