The Waltons

Season 5 Episode 6

The Nightwalker

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Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Oct 28, 1976 on CBS
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7.2
out of 10
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39 votes
  • The Mute

    8.0
    Not the most gripping story, and not the most believable either. This show does a lot of things well, but suspense isn't one of them, and the cutesy ending hardly helps.

    The concept of a prowler is fine, but the story would have been so much better if the man had turned out to be an actual threat. Instead, he's a simpleton who lives in a shack with his mother. He's also dumb, which means we have now had all three wise monkeys: See No Evil (The Job), Hear No Evil (The Foundling) and now Speak No Evil. The mother seems completely unaware that her son is up all night prowling the mountain, and how Olivia is able to tell he is harmless merely by glancing at him we shall never know.

    This week also sees Ike launch his new village hall. To get things going, Ben and Jason organise a dance. With a stalker on the loose, they struggle to sell tickets, but it all works out fine in the end, and the stalker himself even comes along. That shot of Emily Baldwin dancing though! My head is still spinning even now.

    There's no Mary Ellen this week. Presumably she's at nursing school getting ready for her big announcement. As for those who do appear, the man who plays the nightwalker is called Gary Tomlin. He went on to become a writer, producer and director of several soap operas. This was one of his earliest TV appearances.

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