The Waltons

Season 1 Episode 7

The Sinner

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Oct 26, 1972 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (3)

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out of 10
27 votes
  • Repent!

    Another excellent hour from this still-evolving show. Newcomer, John Ritter, is superb as young Reverend Fordwick. He does come across as a bit of a caricature, but I guess there really were people like that in those days. A very likeable character though.

    The drunken vicar sequence also featured in the 'Spencer's Mountain' film so I'm guessing was in the original novel. Both times, the vicar seemed completely oblivious that he was drinking alcohol. How can you preach against something if you don't even know what it is? Great television nonetheless.

    Miss Prissom was hilarious. I'm guessing her name was a pun on 'prissy'. What was she supposed to be anyway? Some kind of non-conformist nun? Brilliant! On the more serious side, we see John and Olivia's religious differences cause some real friction for the first time, though all is forgiven by the end of the hour. Michael Learned has since said that Olivia's strict treatment of her children in this story prompted her to soften the character somewhat. Jump ahead to later in the season and you'll see what she means.

    This is the first time we see Jason play the piano. In fact, this is the first time we see him do anything other than run around the yard or eat dinner. You'd expect there to be all kinds of storylines around a fifteen-year old boy, but instead he gets seldom a line. Come on guys, at least give the bloke a subplot!

    Pick of the bunch: Matt Fordwick (John Ritter)

    Alternate title: The Battle of Drucilla's Pond (referring to J&Os' argument over whether the children should be allowed to take a dip)

    Score: 9.6

  • Generally my thoughts on the beginnings of this series and on this episode.

    I do agree for the most part with "oldshowzfinatic" in his review of this episode. It was a fun show. It is even more fun seeing this first season again (or maybe for the first time for me). It is interesting to note the opening, the subtle differences (like the colour of Olivia's hair and how she mellowed over the soming seasons) and seeing how young these kids were at first and how quickly they grew up and changed. It was also fun to hear John Boy admit in a final voice over from a couple of episodes back that he knew he could be cruel and arrogant. Richard Thomas was very good in that role which is brought to even brighter light later on by the lackluster John Whiteman.
    Throughout the series it is great to see so many guest stars who later went on to great success. Plus if you look up some of the names of some guests you did not think you knew you realize that you have seen them numerous times since. In this episode it is nice to see a young and naive John Ritter and also Collin Wilcox as a preacher woman not too long after her "To Kill A Mockingbird" turn.
    The only thing I take issue with here is that the new preacher did not perform his first sermon drunk. He swayed his new parishioners and the rest the day after when he was merely hungover.
  • A young pastor staying with the family is a zealous preacher, who scares the family with his fearful sermons. But how long can the Waltons withstand this strange person sent from God?

    5 seasons. That's how long they can withstand him. But who I to say that? Maybe it got unbearable somewhere in the 3rd season, but back to this AWESOME EPISODE! This has got to be one of my pesonal all time favorites in the entire Walton series! I think that the overall most funniest part is when the newcomer Reverend Fordwick goes with Zeb to an innocent sit in with the Baldwin sissies, not knowing that they're really serving him is bootleg whiskey. And then he becomes drunk of course and sadly, goes to his first sermon like that. I EXTREMELY recamend this episode! ~Old Shows Finatic