Season Five Episode Guide

The First Edition (First aired: 23rd September 1976)

John-Boy is preparing to publish the first edition of his newspaper, the Blue Ridge Chronicle. Whilst in town asking the Sheriff for a really good headline for the front page, he sees a spectacular car accident. The Mayor of the town has his car out of control, and he crashes into the front of a shop. John-Boy suspects that the reason the Mayor crashed was because he had been drinking and he plans to publish this in his newspaper. He maintains that the public have a right to know the truth, especially as the Mayor is up for re-election. His family, however, believes publishing this story will hurt his good name and reputation and are against John-Boy publishing it. Tensions between the family members mount when John-Boy covers another story, this time regarding a criminal matter involving four teenaged boys, one of whom is his brother Ben. John-Boy claims that the story is newsworthy and should be reported, however his mother believes that the good name of the Walton family should not be plastered over the front page of the paper! John-Boy is torn between doing what is right as a newspaper publisher and editor, and doing what is right for all the people involved.

Written by John McCreevey; directed by Lawrence Dobkin.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Conrad Janis (Graham Thornbury), Hal Riddle  , Michael McDonough (Joe), Meegan King , Laird Fenwick, Brad Rearden (Chuck), Rick Meyer.

NOTE 1: Richard Thomas, as John Boy, is seen using a walking stick during this episode and a couple of others. In the show it was explained that he had a mishap whilst riding on Ike's motorcycle.

NOTE 2: I think that Michael McDonough may be an older brother of Mary (Erin Walton) McDonough.

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The Vigil (First aired: 30th September 1976)

This episode opens with John-Boy interviewing the local Doctor who is preparing to leave Walton's Mountain because he is having trouble making a living in Walton's Mountain. He is finding that, with the Depression, people are having difficulty paying their bills with money, and instead are paying with home grown produce. He says that food won't allow him to pay his own bills, however, hence the reason for the move. This will leave the people of Walton's Mountain without a Doctor though, and this concerns John-Boy.

Whilst the Doctor is away in the city Grandma becomes quite ill with fevers and stomach pains, and Mary Ellen, who has just begun nursing school, tells her that the symptoms she describes are those of the stomach flu which they are seeing a lot of in the hospital and that bed rest is all she needs to recover. Grandma becomes increasingly worse though, and without a Doctor in the vicinity the family is forced to take her to the hospital, where she undergoes an operation. In the meantime Erin has taken a job as an assistant to Miss Fanny, the switchboard operator, who is a very proper and pedantic woman. She gives Erin a difficult time without listening to her excuses and reasons, but she shows Erin how important a job she does when she uses the switchboard to track down the Doctor and sends him to the hospital in time to tend to Grandma. Needless to say, Grandma makes a full recovery, and Mary Ellen learns an important lesson on just what the role of a nurse really is.

Written by Kathleen Hite; directed by Harry Harris.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Robert Merritt Woods (David Spencer), Sheila Allen (Fanny Tatum), Victor Izay (Dr Vance), Dee Carroll (Mrs Vance), John Crawford (Sheriff Bridges).

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The Comeback (First aired: 7th October 1976)

As a part of the cost cutting measures being introduced at the Klineberg Conservatory, scholarships are being withdrawn. As a result Jason finds that he has to come up with his tuition fees: $300 for the year's tuition, or in installments of $100, the first payment being expected within a month. He hears of a job for a musician at the Dew Drop Inn, the local bar, and he begins playing the piano and his guitar there each night. Neither his grandmother, nor his mother are very impressed with his new job however, thinking that young Jason will be led astray by all the sinful folk who go there for their entertainment. He also renews his acquaintance with a family he hasn't seen for some time. Seth Turner, Jason's friend who died in The Gift in season 2, had similar aspirations to Jason, wanting to study music and become a musician. Seth's father was a well known musician, who had a band, but he dropped out of music when his son died. In fact the father, Red Turner, had almost lost interest in life altogether, and Jason forms a plan to encourage him to make a comeback, and uses the Dew Drop Inn as the venue.

Written by Seth Freeman; directed by Harvey S. Laidman

Guests: Merle Haggard (Red Turner), Pat Quinn (Wilma Turner), Cissy Wellman (Cissy), Jay Robinson (Professor Thaxton), Dorothy Shay (Thelma), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Robert Donner (Yancy Tucker).

NOTE: This episode reintroduces the characters of Red Turner and his wife, who first appeared in "The Gift".

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The Baptism (First aired: 14th October 1976)

The Waltons Mountain community become very excited when they learn that a well known evangelist is coming to the Mountain to lead this year's revival meeting. Olivia has hopes that some of the Walton children will heed the call and become baptised, especially Ben who is spotted at the Dew Drop Inn, by both the evangelist and Reverend Fordwick, with Yancy Tucker. They called in there as soon as the evangelist arrived on the mountain, so that he could see the "centre of sin". Both Olivia and Esther also pray that John will take part in the meeting and also become baptised, however John has so far not felt the need to be formally baptised, feeling that he believes in God in his own way and preferring not to go to worship in the Baptist church with the other family members. However John does end up going to the meeting. A sudden storm forces him to go outside to cover the wood which he intended to work on whilst the others were at the meeting, and a bolt of lightening near him, renders him unconscious and the wood gets wet. Olivia sees this as a sign from God and John duly attends the meeting with the others. When the preacher begins with his "fire and brimstone preaching", however, John walks out, upsetting Olivia further. At the same time Ben is struggling to decide whether he really wants to be baptised adding to Olivia's stress and the division between John and Olivia deepens. Olivia comes to accept John's decision in the end and sees him as a searcher, one looking for religion which is different from the mainstream. Her distress is diminished somewhat when both Ben and Yancy take the plunge into the river and both become baptised.

Written by Andy White; directed by Ralph Waite.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Mary Jackson (Miss Emily), Helen Kleeb (Miss Mamie), John Ritter (Reverend Fordwick), John Karlen (Reverend Ezekiel Henshaw), Cissy Wellman (Cissy).

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The Fire Storm (First aired: 21st October 1976)

John Boy decides that he will publish excerpts from Hitler's book "Mein Kampf" in his newspaper. It was a book written by Hitler where he vows to lead Germany to world dominance, and John Boy feels that the people of Waltons Mountain should be aware of what he has written. Many of the community's people, including the Reverend, however, think that they should remain ignorant of what Hitler has to say. John Boy argues, however, that ignorance will cause people to become afraid and behave irrationally, causing fear and hatred. He thinks that if people know the truth they will not be afraid.

Mrs Brimmer tells John Boy that her husband was born in Germany and during World War 1 they were victimised wherever they went because of it, and eventually they settled at Waltons Mountain where nobody knew the truth. Hatred and fear does indeed occur, with many people taking their ads out of the newspaper and not buying it. The Waltons even get a rock thrown through their window.

As all this is going on, Erin is pleading with her family to allow her to enter a beauty contest, but they are not keen, until Grandpa comes up with a compromise. She doesn't win and blames John Boy and his article for her loss. The show ends with a symbolic "book burning" thought up by Reverend Fordwick. He says that if the Nazis are burning American books then they should burn a copy of "Mein Kampf". Buck Vernon found this copy and then went on to gather all the other German books he could find and proposes that these are burned too. John Boy becomes very angry and says that if books are burnt then you can't know about what's in them, and your freedom is taken away. He pauses and picks up one of the books: a German version of the Holy Bible. Ashamed, the Reverend acknowledges that John Boy did have a point and the townsfolk recognize that ignorance did indeed cause hatred and fear and could cause normally rational people to behave irrationally.

Written by Rod Peterson & Claire Whitaker; directed by Ralph Serenskey.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), John Ritter (Reverend Fordwick), Nora Marlowe (Mrs Brimmer), Pearl Shear (Zuleika Dunbar), Barry Cahill (Buck Vernon), Robert Merritt Woods (David Spencer), Art Gilmore (Newsreel announcer).

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The Night Walker (First aired: 28th October 1976)

When Ike Godsey renovates a hall with the intent on hiring it out to people for functions, John Boy suggests to Jason that he might raise some much needed cash by holding a dance for the local people. He begins to organise this, only to find that there is a prowler frightening the people of Waltons Mountain. The prowler appears not to be harming anybody, but as everyone in the community knows everyone else, and nobody knows who this prowler could be, people are afraid that he might harm somebody. The prowler ends up to be the mute son of a new neighbour who finds his place, as well as acceptance, on Waltons Mountain. Once the people know who the prowler is, Jason ends up holding a very successful, and profitable, dance.

Written by Paul West; directed by Harvey S. Laidman.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Mary Jackson (Miss Emily), Helen Kleeb (Miss Mamie), John Crawford (Sheriff Bridges), Peggy Webber (Mrs Eva Hadley), Gary Tomlin (Lorin), "The Rhythm Kings" consisting of Larry McNeely (banjo player), Brian Longley (sax player), Ralph Henley (drums).

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The Wedding (First aired: 4th November 1976) (two-hour episode)

Mary Ellen, unexpectedly, announces her engagement to David Spencer, a wealthy young medical intern studying at the hospital where she is a nursing student. The two plan to have a very short engagement, marrying in just a few weeks time then returning to live in Richmond where David will join his father in a medical practice. An engagement party is duly planned and right in the middle of it, the new Waltons Mountain doctor arrives, young and unmarried Curtis Willard. Sparks fly between Mary Ellen and Curt right from the start. In fact many of the folks he comes into contact with claim that he must have failed the bedside manner subject in medical school. He appalls and shocks Miss Mamie and Miss Emily Baldwin when Miss Emily arrives at the clinic and he wants to unbutton her blouse to listen to her chest! Mary Ellen tries to match Curt with the mountain nurse, Miss Nora, even though she herself is attracted to Curt. As the wedding approaches, Mary Ellen becomes more confused about her feelings for Curt and at the wedding rehearsal she finally runs out at the "I do" part and tells David that she can't marry him. Instead she marries Curt.

Written by Rod Peterson & Claire Whitaker; directed by Lawrence Dobkin.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), John Ritter (Reverend Fordwick), Mary Jackson (Miss Emily), Helen Kleeb (Miss Mamie), John Crawford (Sheriff Bridges), Robert Donner (Yancy Tucker), Robert Merritt Woods (David Spenser), Nora Marlowe (Mrs Brimmer), Peter Brandon (Dr Spencer), Debbie Gunn (Patsy Brimmer), Kaiulani Lee (Miss Nora), Jean Howell (Mrs Spencer), David Doremus (GW Haines), Molly Dodd (Miss Lynch), Glenn Robards (Committee Chairman), Art Gilmore (Radio Announcer).

NOTE: Tom Bower makes his return to Waltons Mountain, this time in the recurring role of Curt Willard. His character would continue to be seen from time to time over the next couple of seasons. His first appearance was in The Wingwalker during season 4.

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The Cloudburst (First aired: 11th November 1976)

John Boy is having trouble making his payments on his newspaper printing press and the bank warns him that if he doesn't come up with the cash to make the payments which are in arrears, then they will seize his press. The point he makes, however, is that if they take his press they will take away his potential to earn the necessary money. The banker suggests that John Boy may be able to investigate selling a piece of land on Waltons Mountain that he owns. The land dealer offers him a good deal for his land, and so he sells, much to his grandfather's disgust. When John Boy investigates another current land development project being pursued by the same company as he sold his land to, he discovers that the company uses the land for hydraulic mining, a system of mining that destroys the land so completely that nothing will ever grow there again. The company aims to buy up enough parcels of land to enable them to set up this type of mining on Waltons Mountain. While John Boy is trying to dissuade the rest of the people from selling their land, Mary Ellen faces her own crisis when she is nursing a badly injured Martha Rose. Martha Rose is having difficulty breathing after she fell from a ladder and in order to save her life, Curt must perform surgery. Instead of helping him Mary Ellen faints and feels that she has let Curt down. After speaking with her mother she goes over to the Church, where she finds that Rosemary Fordwick has gone into labour. Her husband left her to go to find Curt and with a bad storm brewing Rosemary doesn't want Mary Ellen to leave her alone. Mary Ellen redeems herself admirably when she delivers Rosemary's baby, little Mary Margaret Fordwick.

Written by Paul Cooper; directed by Harry Harris.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), John Ritter (Reverend Fordwick), Mariclaire Costello (Rosemary Fordwick), Cindy Eilbacher (Martha Rose), Ron Hajek (Russell Travis).

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The Great Motorcycle Race (First aired: 18th November 1976)

After Jim Bob helps Ike by repairing his motorcycle, Ike allows him to use it any time he chooses, much to Olivia's dismay. When he wants to enter a motorcycle race using Ike's bike, she is not keen but realises that she must allow him to grow up and just trust him to make the right decisions. Ike, on the other hand, is far more preoccupied with the news that the Godseys are the next in line to adopt a baby. After receiving the news that Corabeth would not be able to have children they were very upset, but they decided that adoption would be a good solution and are looking forward to getting their baby. Finally the news came through that their baby boy was ready to be collected and so, with great excitement, they head to the adoption agency. They call in at the Walton place on their way home to introduce their new addition to the Waltons, and their baby boy turns out to be a ten year old girl, Aimee Louise. The mother of the baby boy decided at the last minute that she couldn't part with her baby and when the Godseys saw Aimee sitting on her bed, seeming so lonely, it was love at first sight, and so Aimee came home with them. Much of the episode deals with the adjustments Aimee, Ike and Corabeth need to make in order to become a family.

Written by John Joseph; directed by Richard Thomas.

Guests: Rachel Longaker (Aimee Louise Godsey), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Lewis Charles (Eddie Stoker), Eileen McDonough (Patsy Brimmer), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey).

NOTE 1: Rachel Longaker makes her first appearance in The Waltons as Aimee Godsey in this episode.

NOTE 2: Also appearing is Eileen McDonough as Patsy Brimmer, Mrs Brimmer's neice. The character of Patsy Brimmer was introduced in the episode, The Wedding, but was played by Debbie Gunn.

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The Pony Cart (First aired: 2nd December 1976)

Martha Corinne Walton, John Walton's ninety year old aunt comes to visit the family and upsets everyone by insisting that they do everything her way. Martha Corinne was married to Zeb's brother, Henry. When Olivia finds that her family is being upset by Martha Corinne, she gives her a gently prod to encourage her to go home. John Boy begins to drive her home but on the way she decides that she would like to call in at her old homestead site to see the view once more, and to visit the old graves of her family members. Whilst there, she has a minor heart attack, so when she recovers, John Boy insists upon taking her to his home once more, where she can be cared for by her relatives until she dies. She makes John Boy promise that he will see that she is buried next to her Henry on the mountain, and that he will not tell anyone of her condition. While she is at the Waltons, she becomes very interested in the pony cart which Ben is building, which she calls a shay, the word she says was used when she was young. When Ben says he is going to paint it gray, she offers to paint it as it would have been done during her youth. The result is a lovely, bright pony cart with flowers and birds painted on the side, which Ben is delighted with and which he keeps to remember her by once she has died.

Quite a bit of the Walton family history is told in this episode, including the fact that Henry and Zeb's father, Samuel, arrived in America and became one of the first settlers on Waltons Mountain.

Guest: Beulah Bondi (Martha Corinne), Patrick Skelton (Tom Wheeler).

NOTE: Beulah Bondi returned to play Aunt Martha Corinne in this episode and received an Emmy award for her performance.

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The Best Christmas (First aired: 9th December 1976)

As the Walton family are preparing for what Olivia and John feel might be their last Christmas with them altogether as a family, the bad weather and other emergencies seem to be against everyone all being there. Curt and Mary Ellen had made tentative plans to visit and spend Christmas with Curt's family, a tree falling through the Church roof keeps John and Jason busy all Christmas Eve, Grandma and Grandpa have become stranded in Charlottesville by the snow which fell during their visit to Maude Gormley, Erin is kept at the telephone exchange when Miss Fanny fails to return to relieve her, and John Boy is busy wading in freezing cold water trying to free Miss Fanny and her niece from their car which ran off the road and into the river. It certainly does not look as if Olivia's wish will come true and that all her family will be present on Christmas morning.

Written by John McGreevey; directed by Lawrence Dobkin.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), John Ritter (Reverend Fordwick), Lynn Hamilton (Verdie Foster), Hal Williams (Harley Foster), Robert Donner (Yancy Tucker), Sheila Allen (Fanny Tatum), Paul Jenkins (Professor Parkes), Lisa Lyke (Jo Ellen), Debbie Gunn (Patsy Brimmer), Merie Earle (Maude Gormley), Rachel Longaker (Aimee Godsey), John Heistand (Radio Announcer).

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The Last Mustang (First aired: 16th December 1976)

An outsider comes to the county to contest Ep Bridge's re-election as sheriff, and Ep feels that compared to the new comer he comes off badly and will lose the job he has had for fifteen years. Ep comments that his opponent is flashy, and a real ladies man, and that many of the townsfolk are so dazzled by him that they forget that Ep has served them faithfully and well during his time as sheriff. John Boy is drawn into the election when he interviews both men for his newspaper. His favorable interview with Ep's opponent has them send some advertising his way, as well as having them supply a big contract for his father. They believe that John Boy is "on their side" until it is revealed that this election is only to be used as a stepping stone into the senate. Meanwhile, Grandpa is drawn into a battle of his own when a wild mustang is captured and kept penned up. He claims that the horse has always run wild on Walton land and was chased off the land so that it could be captured. The merchant holding the horse intends to use it for advertising purposes. As soon as the horse escapes the Waltons brand it to prove their ownership of him, and they allow him to run free for as long as he lives.

Written by Calvin Clements Jr; directed by Walter Alzmann.

Guests: Mary Jackson (Miss Emily), Helen Kleeb (Miss Mamie), John Fink (Glen Oldfield), John Crawford (Sheriff Bridges), Alan Fudge (Arlo Jessup), Wayne Heffley (Carl Muntner), Arthur Malet (Professor Ainsley), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Asta Hansen (Campaign Worker).

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The Rebellion (First aired: 23rd December 1976)

Olivia claims that she is bored with herself, not with John and the children, but just with her! She decides that she wants to look different so Corabeth gives her a perm which sets all the family laughing. Grandma on the other hand, is upset when Zelda Maynard offers her services to Reverend Fordwick and he agrees that she should share the organ playing at the church services with Esther Walton. Esther says that she has always played the church organ apart from when she shares it with Jason, but it has always been a Walton tradition. She is so hurt by the suggestion that she threatens to become a Methodist!

Written by Kathleen Hite; directed by Harvey S. Laidman.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), John Ritter (Reverend Fordwick), Audrey Christie (Zelda Maynard), Lynn Hamilton (Verdie Foster), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Nora Marlowe (Mrs Brimmer).

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The Ferris Wheel (First aired: 6th January 1977)

The family is very troubled when Elizabeth begins having nightmares and sleepwalks. In her dream she is on a ferris wheel which keeps going around and around and there is nobody there to let her off. John Boy feels that she may be remembering the carnival that came to the mountain some years before, and that perhaps she had a frightening experience at that time. It is remembered that while the carnival was there previously, Elizabeth became lost for a time and was eventually found down by the river, however she was unable to tell anyone what had happened to her, nor how she managed to get to the river. As the episode unfolds, Elizabeth gradually unlocks her memories and is eventually able to tell everyone just what happened to her on that fateful day. By remembering she also solves a mystery for the Baldwin sisters. This episode also looks at Ben who is becoming very concerned at being continually called Shorty, and is worried that he is not growing as quickly as his brothers. To add insult to injury he realises that his sister Erin, and his little brother Jim Bob are both taller than he is now. He decides to buy some Wonder Shoes which will increase his height by two inches, but to his dismay, nobody in the family even notices.

Written by Rod Peterson & Claire Whitaker; directed by Lawrence Dobkin.

Guests: Mary Jackson (Miss Emily), Helen Kleeb (Miss Mamie), Debi Richter (Darlene Jarvis), Dave Shelley (Wilbur Davies), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), John Crawford (Sheriff Bridges), Jeff Maxwell (Car Salesman), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey).

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The Elopement (First aired: 13th January 1977)

During the spring of 1937, Chad Morgan, Erin's first love, returned to Waltons Mountain. We first met Chad in the previous season of The Waltons, in the episode The Competition. He liked the country so much that he bought some land there and returned with plans to build a cabin on his land, and hoped to marry Erin. John and Olivia feel that Erin is too young at 16 to contemplate marriage, even though Olivia was only 16 when she married John, and they want her to finish her schooling first. Both Chad and Erin do not want to wait though and make plans to elope. Jason has problems of his own when the Godseys make a visit to their relatives in a nearby town and Ike leaves Jason in charge of the store. Ike instructs Jason not to give credit to strangers, and only to accept cash transactions. When Maude Gormley comes in buying paint and flower seeds, Jason extends her credit, considering her a friend, not a stranger, but when he asks Ike to clarify this, Ike says definitely no credit for Maude! John Boy goes to see Maude and to tell her of the situation she has put Jason in, and discovers that Maude uses the flower seed to feed the wild birds, and then makes paintings of them.

Written by Hindi Brooks; directed by Harry Harris.

Guests: Michael O'Keefe (Chad Marshall), Merie Earle (Maude Gormley), Vernon Weddle (Reverend Caldwell),  David Hooks (Andrew Farrell), Hank Stohl (Radio Announcer).

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John's Crossroad (First aired: 20th January 1977)

Business is really quiet at the mill, and money is tight at the Walton home so John takes an office job in Charlottesville, working in a government job. When he arrives at work he discovers that the job isn't really what he expected: everyone is instructed to work quietly; the windows are not allowed to be opened and everyone has to stay until the supervisor leaves for the evening, even though working hours officially finish at 6 p.m. John is told by a co-worker that the reason he was employed was to try to push out an older worker who has been there for twenty odd years, and is really just biding time to get his pension. All in all John finds the office a difficult place to work, and Olivia finds being at home all day, by herself, very difficult as well. Zeb is also missing his partner: Esther is apparently in hospital in Charlottesville and he is finding that the Walton children are outgrowing the need for his company. However he finds Elizabeth a willing companion on his adventures, although Olivia is not as keen, claiming that Zeb should not be trying to make Elizabeth into a boy!

Written by Andy White and Paul West; directed by Richard Thomas.

Guests: Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Donald Moffat (Mr Morgan), William Phipps (Mel Parsons), Christopher Gardner (Lucas Farnham), Betty Jinnette (Miss Agnes), Daniel Leveans (Kyle Jeffers), Kenneth Tigar (Clem Beal), Patch MacKenzie (Mavis Crawford), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey).

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The Career Girl (First aired: 27th January 1977)

Erin becomes depressed when, during her graduation ceremony, it is commented that nobody really knows what Erin wants to do with her life, it must be a secret! The fact is that Erin herself doesn't know and she is painfully aware that she is the first Walton child to graduate and not know where she is going. She has been working at the telephone exchange for some time now and feels that she doesn't want to make that her career because she would prefer to put faces to the people she speaks with. She looks at her older siblings and compares them to herself: John Boy has a talent for writing, Mary Ellen always knew that she wanted to be a nurse, and Jason has a talent for music. Erin doesn't see a talent at all for herself and she is labeled by the family as being the pretty one. She discovers her future career path by accident though, through John Boy telling her to grow up and think about someone other than herself. She knows that John Boy has been searching for a typewriter to type out his book, as no publisher will read the manuscript unless it is typed. She finds a workable typewriter in the window of a business school and she offers to work as a receptionist and book-keeper for the school in exchange for the typewriter. When John Boy finds her there, he makes her realise that it is the type of work that she is suited to and that she should have training there. As payment for such training he offers the business school free advertising in his newspaper.

Written by Kathleen Hite; directed by Harry Harris.

Guests: Mariclaire Costello (Rosemary Fordwick), Billie Bird (Shirley), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Donald Holton (Eli Carr), Ted Jordan (Spurgeon Connors), Sheila Allen (Fanny Tatum), Alice Hirson (Jane Stephens), Nora Marlowe (Mrs Brimmer), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey).

NOTE: Interesting to note just how quickly Erin forgot about her graduation. When we see Jim Bob graduating she comments that her graduation was the best day of her life!

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The Hero (First aired: 3rd February 1977)

Before she became ill Grandma Walton had suggested to John Boy that he publish the first commemorative Blue Ridge Chronicle to mark the day the Jefferson County Doughboys returned from the war. As he does some research for his article and for the Honour Day which he is helping to organise, he discovers that their own Sherrif, Ep Bridges, was honoured with several awards following his war service. Ep however, has preferred to lock his medals away and not draw attention to them because to him they are a reminder of the killing and the lives lost during the war. He did not see himself as a hero at all. During John Boy's research he meets someone who was an ambulance driver in the war and who was Ep's first love. This lady, Sarah Griffith, arrives at Waltons Mountain to renew her acquaintance with Ep and befriends the Walton family, especially Jim Bob who is fascinated by a lady who knows about cars. The Honour Day ceremony takes place at the soldier memorial cemetery and we learn that Zeb and Esther's son Ben, went to fight the war in France and never returned. A cross is erected in his honour, and young Ben makes a special memorial for his namesake. An interesting note is that one of the crosses in the cemetery contains the name of Harry Harris, one of the directors of the series.

Written by Kathleen Hite; directed by Tony Brand.

Guests: John Crawford (Sheriff Bridges), Lynn Carlin (Sarah Griffith), Nora Marlowe (Mrs Brimmer), Eileen McDonough (Patsy Brimmer), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey).

NOTE: The character of Sarah Griffith returns to marry Ep. Bridges in "The Go Getter".

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The Inferno (First aired: 10th February 1977)

John-Boy enters, and wins a newspaper contest. The prize is that he gets an all expense paid trip to cover an important story, which will then be published in a newspaper. His assignment is to cover the landing of the Hindenburg, a German airship, and to interview a German immigrant from the airship. As the airship is landing though, it bursts into flames and he, along with the other onlookers, try desperately to rescue as many people as they can. John Boy is so affected by the experience that he arrives home and discovers that the words for his newspaper story simply won't come. Meanwhile Curt is finding that he is being stifled by Mary Ellen's family. He wants to be able to spend some time alone with her, but every time he turns around he feels that he has to share her with another Walton. Fortunately for the young couple, Olivia and John went through a similar experience when they were newly weds, and Olivia shares their secret with Curt and Mary Ellen.

Written by Rod Peterson and Claire Whitaker; directed by Harry Harris.

Guests: Mary Jackson (Miss Emily), Helen Kleeb (Miss Mamie), Jack Ging (Stuart Henry), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Nora Marlowe (Mrs Brimmer), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Tom Maier (Bartender).

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The Heartbreaker (First aired: 17th February 1977)

Curt's sister, Vanessa, arrives to visit Curt and Mary Ellen, and brings the news that she has left her husband and intends to pursue a singing career. She meets Jason and a friendship, based on their musical interest, springs up, and this soon turns to love. Jason helps Vanessa with both her singing and her guitar playing and he is soon skipping his university classes to be with her. However she meets a Nashville singer and his manager whilst performing with Jason at the Dew Drop Inn and sees these people as being more important for her career than Jason, and leaves Waltons Mountain for Nashville, and Jason nursing a broken heart. experiences.

Written by Seth Freeman; directed by Ralph Waite.

Guests: Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Linda Purl (Vanessa), Victor Arnold (Joe Martin), Dorothy Shay (Thelma), J.S. Johnson (Lou Rhymer), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), A. Wilford Brimley (Horace), Paul Weaver (J.D. Waters).

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The Long Night (First aired: 24th February 1977)

With Grandma being in hospital for so long the Walton family are troubled by finances, and loneliness. Grandpa, especially, becomes very lonely, depressed and withdrawn at having to be away from his wife of so many years. He is led to believe that he will be able to bring his wife home, yet when he arrives at the hospital he discovers this is not so. He very loudly expresses his disapproval at the hospital of the hospital and its staff and is subsequently barred from coming back again, because Esther needs peace and quiet in order to recover. Meanwhile Aimee Godsey turns to him for help when she is barred from playing with Elizabeth because Corabeth sees Elizabeth as an unladylike influence on Aimee. Aimee feels that Corabeth is trying to turn her into a lady because she doesn't accept or like Aimee for what she is. All Aimee wants is to be allowed to be a little girl and just like everyone else.

The teleplay  written by Rod Peterson & Claire Whitaker; story by Rod Peterson, Claire Whitaker & Katharyn Michaelian Powers; directed by Harry Harris.

Guests: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Rachel Longaker (Aimee Godsey), Lynn Wood (Receptionist), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Art Gilmore (Announcer).

NOTE: We don't see Grandma in this episode. It was at this time that Ellen Corby suffered her stroke and was written out of the series temporarily.

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The Hiding Place (First aired: 3rd March 1977)

The niece of the Baldwin sisters, Hilary Baldwin Von Kleist, arrives at Waltons Mountain to stay with the Baldwins. She is an American citizen who married a German. Several receptions and meetings are held in her honour, which the Waltons attend, but John Boy is frustrated by her lack of comment regarding the way Hitler is handling things in Germany. He claims that an insider would be able to tell the people of Waltons Mountain how things really are over there, and if the possibility of war is a real one. Hilary, however, appears to be blocking something from her mind, and John Boy's questions bring her memories which she does not want to face. Things come to a head when she arrives at the Walton home for dinner one evening and Jason is there playing the piano in his national guard uniform. He had joined the national guards against Olivia's wishes, for the pay, and also so that he can be prepared to fight should he need to. One look at Jason and Hilary faints. We are told that she was reminded of her own son who had been recently killed by German soldiers, and it was this that she was running away from and blocking out.

Written by John McGreevey; directed by Walter Alzmann.

Guest: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Mary Jackson (Miss Emily), Helen Kleeb (Miss Mamie), Jean Marsh (Hilary), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Joe Cala (Newscaster), Walter Edminston (Extra Voices).

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The Go-Getter (First aired: 10th March 1977)

John Boy is getting frustrated because he is nearing the end of his novel, yet cannot find the time or the peace and quiet to finish it. He and Ben have a falling out about working time at the newspaper and Ben declares that he can get a job any time he wants. When John Boy tells him to do just that, he approaches his girlfriends father who employs him as a car salesman. He seems to do very well in this job, however his family question his high pressure selling techniques. Jim Bob in particular is disapproving when Ben sells Mrs Brimmer a car which needs work and she cannot afford to get the work done. Fortunately Ben's conscience comes to the party, and he retires from his sales career! In this episode, Sarah, whom we met in The Hero, arrives back in Waltons Mountain in hope that she might get Ep Bridges to marry her. Olivia does her best to try to get them together, and she enlists John's help as well, although he is reluctant to interfere.

Written by Andy White and Paul West; directed by Lawrence Dobkin.

Guests: Lynn Carlin (Sarah), Lew Brown (Mr Jarvis), Melody Thomas (Darlene Jarvis), John Crawford (Sheriff Bridges), Brian Malone (Usher), Jeff Cotler (Fester), Don Keefer (Arnie Shimerdy), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey).

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The Achievement (First aired: 17th March)

After waiting for six weeks and hearing no word of his novel, John-Boy travels to Hastings House in New York to try to track down his lost novel. In actual fact it is not lost, but is just waiting in a huge pile for the publisher to read. The trip ends up becoming the turning point in both his personal and professional life. He returns to Waltons Mountain with the news that his book is going to be published and that he has been commissioned to write another. However he feels that the time is right for him to move from the family home to New York. This episode has many flashbacks as John Boy relates to the editor just how he came to write his book and explains a bit about his family.

Written by Dale Eunson, Earl Hamner and Andy White; directed by Harry Harris.

Guests: David Huddleston (A.J. Covington), Bettye Ackerman (Belle Becker), Deirdre Lenihan (Daisy), Maggie Malooly (Miss Maddocks), Joan Tompkins (Mrs Herbert), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Mariclaire Costello (Miss Hunter), Lynda Sainte-James (Ticket Seller), John Dayton (Mail boy).

NOTE 1: This was the last episode in which Richard Thomas appeared in his regular role as John-Boy. He did occasionally return later as a guest, but the role of John-Boy was finally taken over by Robert Wightman in the episode "The Waiting" in season 8.

NOTE 2: Look out for the flashbacks in this episode. They are from:

NOTE 3:  We find out that Elizabeth is 12 in this episode.