Time and tide wait for no Walton. Just six episodes ago it was May 1937; now it's September 1939. Mary Ellen is still pregnant and poor Jason is now in his fifth year at music school.
With the German invasion of Poland as a backdrop, Walton's Mountain welcomes a dashing new Baptist minister, who causes a few hearts to race. It's an entertaining story, but the script is a bit weak in parts. Rather predictably, Hank Buchanan is the polar opposite of Matt Fordwick. Where Matt was stiff and disapproving, Hank is relaxed and broadminded: he plays cards, he goes to the pub and he dances with girls who should still be at school. I'm glad he chose to stay in the end; he'll be a worthy addition to a show which has just lost its leading man.
The title comes from a subplot in which Jim Bob and Zeb trap a hawk. This is a typical wildlife-themed subplot in that it a) involves Zeb and b) has no relevance to the main story. Fawns, foxes and last mustangs all spring to mind.
Both Erin and Corabeth take a shine to Hank. The poor bloke must be wondering where all the women his own age have gone. We're used to seeing Erin throw herself at anything with a pulse, of course, but it's very odd seeing Corabeth do the same thing. Hank's chest hair though! It's quite something. You can see why the bloke is a hit.