I’m back this week with a full installment of my Family Affair Friday series.
Season 1, Episode 9, “A Matter for Experts,” 11/14/1966
Aired: 11/14/66. Teleplay by: Joseph Hoffman and John McGreevey. Story by: Joseph Hoffman. Directed by: William D. Russell.
The school vice principal, Miss Bryant, tells Uncle Bill that Buffy and Jody are completely dependent on each other and should be placed in separate classrooms. Uncle Bill resists at first, saying that being orphaned, separated for a year, and then shipped to a new home in strange city might be enough adjustment for the time being. Ya think?
He takes the twins to child psychologist Edith Morse, who agrees that the twins need to develop individual interests.
They are separated at school and shepherded into separate past-times, but they remain united in their imaginative play.
Jody does find a friend, Peter.
Buffy’s attempts at friendship fail, however, and she’s morose.
Finally, the kids concoct a case of the measles to avoid school altogether.
Uncle Bill decides to trust his instincts and reunite them.
At the beginning of this episode, I was indignant at the experts who wanted to split up twins. By the end, Buffy’s complete inability to function without Jody did seem worrisome.
Miss Bryant: Sarah Selby. Dr. Edith Morse: Jean Engstrom. Barbara: Kym Karath. Peter: Randy Whipple. Mrs. Hughes: Susan Davis. Kym Karath was Gretl in The Sound of Music and Pattie-Cake in Spencer’s Mountain. On The Brady Bunch, she appeared as Kerry in “Cyrano de Brady.”
She would appear on one more episode of Family Affair. Randy Whipple appeared in no less than 11 episodes. He also played one of Jerry Van Dyke’s kids in My Mother the Car.
The twins attend PS 724. Cissy frequents The Gourmet Hamburger and doesn’t “dig” geometry. Buffy begins ballet lessons.
Jody’s turtle gets another mention.
Uncle Bill actually takes the kids to the park himself–twice!
Today’s Bonus Feature
In honor of the U.S. presidential election this week, I present a photo that unites Family Affair and the American presidency. This Associated Press photo shows Anissa Jones getting up close and personal with President Lyndon B. Johnson during a Christmas Seals event on November 12, 1968. I can’t decide if this photo is sweet or creepy.
The caption reads: KISS FOR TV STAR–President Johnson kisses Anissa (Buffy) Jones, 10-year-old television star, after receiving the first sheet of Christmas Seals today at the White House. The President who is holding the Seals in his hand, also received from Buffy a rag doll which the junior actress named “Mrs. Beasley.”
Read the whole Family Affair Friday series.