The Waltons

Season 1 Episode 1

The Foundling

9
Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Sep 14, 1972 on CBS
9.4
out of 10
User Rating
79 votes
3

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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When a young girl is left on the doorstep of the Waltons' home, they take her in, learning she is deaf after taking her to the doctor.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • The First Hour

    8.5
    Wow! Having just come off the end of season nine, the children don't half look small. Ok, so we're used to seeing Elizabeth like this, and Ben will always be, erm, Ben-sized, but Jim Bob and Erin are tiny.

    I was surprised by the choice of story for this episode. Don't get me wrong: it's not a bad story and, of course, it sets the tone for many, many future episodes, but I would have expected to see something focused on the Waltons themselves for the series opener. There's a bit of character development for John-boy but we find out next to nothing about the others.

    The little girl playing Holly was rather good I thought, and there's plenty of aaaaahh factor for those who like it. I loved that Holly's father kept yelling instructions at her the whole time even though he knew she was deaf.

    It's certainly a decent start and it'll be interesting to see how it develops in these early seasons. I shall never look at dungarees in the same way again...moreless
  • A great start to the series!

    10
    As a big fan of Little House on the Prairie, I decided to rent the Waltons and I loved watching every minute of this first episode.

    In the pilot episode, "The Foundling", the Waltons find a young girl named Holly at their doorstep. Even though they find it hard to make ends meets because of the depression, they still take in the young girl who turns out to be deaf.

    However, while the family pays a lot of attention to Holly and learn sign language to communicate with her, they seem to ignore Elizabeth. We also find out that Holly's mother put Holly at the Walton's doorstep because Holly's father wanted to put her away in a home because he felt she was dumb and of no use and Holly's mother did not want that. Anyway, Elizabeth gets jealous and one day accidentally locks herself in a chest in an abandoned house, and only Holly knows about the incident. But before she can get to the Waltons, her father picks her up and decides to take her back.

    Can the Waltons find Holly and Elizabeth in time?

    I thought this was a wonderful episode which introduced a lot of great characters. I really enjoyed the scenes where Elizabeth was getting jealous of Holly, and when when John Boy finally got through to Holly to understand sign language.

    The guest stars who played Holly's parents also did a wonderful job with their characters. I thought the girl who played Holly could have been a little better, but the story was so delightful to watch, it didn't seem very important.

    Overall, I really enjoyed this episode and cannot wait to see more.moreless
  • The waltons first episode (yeah! first episode!) is about the waltons eating their breakfast and then John-boy goes outside and sees a girl sleeping at their backdoor. they find out she's deaf and so they teac her sign language.they dont keep her :(moreless

    10
    it was certainly a strange pilot episode, but it did introduce all the characters and t was pretty cool to see all the cast in their very early childhood, and to see them progress through the series (unlike the simpsons!) the characters look very different then what they do throughout th rest of the series, so i EXTREMELY reccomed this episode to anybody who watches waltons but hasn't sees the first episode. ~old shows finaticmoreless
Joe Conley

Joe Conley

Ike Godsey

Ellen Corby

Ellen Corby

Grandma Esther Walton

Richard Thomas

Richard Thomas

John-Boy Walton

Judy Norton

Judy Norton

Mary Ellen Walton Willard Jones

Eric Scott

Eric Scott

Ben Walton

Michael Learned

Michael Learned

Olivia Walton

Robert Schoenhut

Robert Schoenhut

Bystander

Guest Star

Richard Kelton

Richard Kelton

Anson Collier

Guest Star

Erica Hunton

Erica Hunton

Holly Collier

Guest Star

Tammi Bula

Tammi Bula

Marcia Woolery

Recurring Role

John Crawford

John Crawford

Sheriff Ep Bridges

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Closing Narration: Those were lean years and for many Americans a harsh and bitter time. On Walton's Mountain we where sustained with poems and ginger bread and laughter and sharing, but most of all by a remarkable mother and father. The house in which we were born and raised is still there, still home. and on the winds that sigh on those misted Blue Ridge Mountains our voices must echo still.

    • John Boy: When you're sad the tears come.

    • John Boy: I guess I never though much about that before ….. what it must be like not to hear radios or birds singing or people laughing. So much beauty in the world just to hear, it's sad you're going to miss all that.

    • Elizabeth: Daddy where did you find me?
      John: Hiding behind one of your mama's smiles.

    • John: They're giving her a scrubbing which she doesn't much like.

    • John Boy: Now where are you going my pretty maid, a milking sir she said. In the books its always the girls that milk the cows.
      Grandpa: Just goes to show you shouldn't believe everything your read in books.

    • Opening Narration: When I was growing up during the Depression I lived with my red headed brothers and sisters, my parents and grandparents at the foot a mountain which had been in our family for generations. My father used to say in our house there was always room for one more and I remember one morning when his hospitality was put to a challenging test.

  • NOTES (1)

    • The script for this episode was published in On The Air: a collection of radio and TV plays, eds. Sylvia Z. Brodkin and Elizabeth J. Pearson. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1977 (221–66).

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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