The Waltons

Season 7 Episode 7

The Portrait

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Nov 02, 1978 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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out of 10
105 votes
  • The Canary

    Is this season ever going to get better? Not on this showing. For what must be the fiftieth time, the plot revolves around a random one-off character with personality issues. In this case, the man's name is Derek, and he likes to paint war scenes. He also likes to stare. A lot.

    The writers clearly see him as some kind of troubled soul, but it's equally clear they don't know how to handle him. I realise he thinks Erin is his lost love or something, but his reaction to seeing her is so creepy he just comes across as a perv. Rather than run for the hills, however, Erin decides she fancies him. We all know she isn't too choosy when it comes to blokes, but this is a lapse in taste too far. I mean, he'd be alright looking if he shaved his head, but that curly seventies hair is just awful.

    Even the subplot is dull. Jim Bob and Elizabeth buy a canary for Esther then make several attempts to get it to chirp. In the end, it starts to sing while Jason and Esther are making a tuneless din on the piano. As unlikely as this is, it's obvious from the first note what's about to happen. It goes without saying that we never see the canary again.

    There's not much John or Ben this week, and no sign of JC. For me, the best thing is Olivia finding that Christmas cactus in the basement. I can almost hear Patricia Neal's voice.

    Pick of the bunch: Erin Walton (Mary McDonough)

    Alternate title: The Obsession

    Score: 7.4