Written by: John McGreevey. Directed by: Charles Barton.
I apologize for the delay in posting this installment. Because I have a terrible cold today, this post is shorter than most. I promise to have a new Family Affair post ready for you June 6. Also, please visit Thursday, June 5, when I’ll be taking part in the Summer of MeTV Classic TV Blogathon. My entry, called “In Praise of Peter,” will focus on The Brady Bunch. (Update, June 3: With the passing of Ann B. Davis, I have changed the focus of my blogathon entry, which will now be called “Alice: An Appreciation.”)
In the Davis household this week, Bill comes home to find Buffy and Jody in the closet.
Strange behavior, since he’s supposed to be the good guy in this game.
I love how blase Bill looks amid this carnage. He does ask French where Jody got the toy guns and learns that he traded other items for them.
Her friend’s name is Gwen–a different Gwen than the one usually played by Diane Mountford. This Gwen is bragging about how she put a teacher in her place. When Gwen leaves, Bill observes that she comes on rather strong. Cissy says Gwen is her only friend who really “knows what it’s all about.”
That statement should probably worry Bill, but he is more pre-occupied with Buffy and Jody’s TV-watching habits.
He has checkers or tiddly-winks in mind, but their favorite games have names like Demolition Squad and Sabotage.
Hmm, substituting fairy tales for violent entertainment…What could possibly be the flaw in that plan?
He suggests to Cissy that Gwen is using her, but Cissy doesn’t want to hear it.
French, who screeches the witch’s lines dramatically, is taken aback over how violent the story is, although he tries to “etcetera, etcetera” over the worst of it.
Surprisingly, the kids don’t know what a troll is.
French shows them the book illustration.
Soon, Buffy is seeking refuge in Bill’s room.
We actually get to see Jody’s nightmare, which is by far the best part of this episode.
Jody ends up in Bill’s room, too.
Cissy’s evening isn’t any better. She becomes disgusted with Gwen, who stays out much later than Cissy expected.
That line cracks me up.
Bill has learned his lesson, too–banning TV in favor of stories doesn’t work. He will have to take the time to evaluate each entertainment on its merits.
This episode lends itself to a quick summary because both of its plots are shallow. We don’t even get to learn about the undoubtedly horrible home life that makes Gwen so insufferable. The nightmare sequence is great, though. If only we got to see Buffy’s vision of Mr. French as a witch.
Gwen: Susan Abbott. Pete: Sundown J. Spencer. Story Lady: Jane Webb. Herbie: Randy Whipple.
Just as Cissy usually has a friend named Gwen, Jody usually has a friend named Pete or Peter. Randy Whipple has played Peter in several previous episodes.
Most of Jane Webb’s credits are for performing cartoon voices, particularly female voices on various Archies animated series.