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Ep.20 - The Fulfillment

 
  Original Airdate: February 7, 1974
Writers: Michael Russnow & Tony Kayden
Director: Nick Webster

Prologue:

 
  "The Depression years were hard ones for just about everyone in the country. Our family had little money and few luxuries, but we did have food on the table and clean clothes to wear, even if they were mostly hand-me-downs, and a bountiful supply of love to sustain our household. Other families were not as fortunate as we were, and I remember how my mother and father occasionally invited a child from the Jefferson County Orphanage to share our life on Walton's Mountain."

 

Synopsis:

  John and Olivia bring Stevie home for a visit from the Jefferson County orphanage. The family has a history of bringing orphans home for short visits. We last saw evidence of this when Hobie Shank a former orphan came for a visit in "The Braggart" (s2-ep8) Stevie is 7 years old. He has a chip on his shoulder from his tough life being moved about and doesn't relate well to other children. He has trust issues and it takes some time for him to warm up to the family.
  John-Boy has been helping Curtis Norton the blacksmith since he burned his hand on the job. He witnesses a tension between Curtis and Ann his wife. Ann has become restless in her marriage. She has been shopping for expensive dresses and decorating her home like scenes from a movie. When Olivia stops by she confides that she is not able to have children of her own. Stevie knocks over a bowl of freshly peeled apples and runs away rather than suffer the blame. Curtis picks him up on the road and brings him back to his house where John-Boy tells him that he is visiting his family from the orphanage. Stevie takes a shining to Curtis. Later when Ann and Curtis visit with the Walton's they learn that Stevie has come from the orphanage. Ann believes that the family has plotted to bring Stevie and her and Curtis together. She is not ready yet to accept her situation and open her heart to the possibility of welcoming Stevie into their life. On the final day of his stay it is obvious that the visit has had an impact on Stevie. Just as they are about to leave to take Stevie back to the county home, Curtis and Ann arrive to talk to Stevie. Ann speaks to him alone and asks if he would like to be adopted as their son. Stevie accepts.

Epilogue:

 
  "The Depression lingered on, hard times continued, but somehow the love that was most important to us on Walton's Mountain extended itself to others, and love is what the Nortons gave to Stevie, and he to them."

Secondary Story:

 
  Jason unsuccessfully attempts to stay up past his regular bedtime as the second oldest child in the family.

Episode Notes and Interesting Facts:

 
 
  • When Curtis Norton appeared in "The Bicycle" (s1-ep22) he was played by actor Ned Beatty.
  • Victor French who plays Curtis Norton in this episode played one of Clay Spencer's (aka John Walton's) brothers in Spencer's Mountain. A little over a month after this episode Victor French would star in the pilot of Little House on the Prairie (1974–1983) with Michael Landon. They would then star together in Highway to Heaven (1984–1989).
  • This episode makes extensive use of rear screen projection for the driving scenes.

Additional Cast:

 
 

Guest Stars: Tiger Williams (Stevie), Victor French (Curtis Norton), Ivy Jones (Ann Norton)




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