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Ep.9 - The Beau

 
  Original Airdate: November 9, 1972
Writer: D.C. Fontana and Richard Fontana
Director: Gwen Archer

Description:

 
  Grandma begins to date an old school boy admirer of hers. Jim-Bob and Yancy make moonshine strong enough to be used as engine fuel.

Intro scene:

 

Elizabeth storms into Mary Ellen’s room. She is upset about about something that at first seems like a boy that may like her at school but it turns out that she is taking about a man that has come to pay her grandmother a visit and who is quite smitten with the women he admired so much back when they were school mates.


Prologue:

  "It is always a special moment when you find something you thought you had lost. But my grandmother had mixed feelings when she rediscovered a childhood friend she hadn't seen for almost fifty years."

Synopsis:

 

John arrives back from the store with the mail. There is a letter for Grandma from Marcus Dane in Richmond. He has included a newspaper article about Zeb’s ancestors who first came to Virginia. John reads the letter out loud. He has sent his condolences to her for the passing of her husband Zeb. Marcus Dane lived on the next farm down from her when she was growing up. Caught up in the moment Olivia has burned the corn bread.

Marcus Dane arrives at the Walton home to see Grandma. Elizabeth meets him at the door and welcomes him inside to the kitchen where Grandma is busy making pies. She is stunned to see him and embarassed by her appearance.

Marcus tells Esther about his life while they sit on the front porch. She has changed into her Sunday best. Marcus informs her that he is going to be helping to make J.D. Pickett’s plant more efficient and he will be in the area from time to time. He says that the last time he saw her, Zeb had cut in and kept her to himself on the dance floor. The next thing he knew they were engaged and it was a long time before he met a girl that could match his feelings for Esther. He informs Esther that his wife has passed 2 years prior. He has brought her a Blue Girl rose bush and asks her where he can plant it. When Grandma tries to describe her feelings about the plant that he has rooted in front of the shed she has trouble getting the words out. He says that he understands her frustration because he had a stroke 5 years before that left him as speechless as her at first. As Marcus makes an attempt to leave she asks him to stay for dinner.

The two sit in the kitchen looking through an old photo album and telling stories to Olivia and John. He says that she was quite the mischief maker when she was in school and is surprised that she has turned out to be so prim and proper. Elizabeth who has been tidying in the kitchen excuses herself stating that she needs to do her homework. She specifically doesn’t say goodnight to Marcus as she is bothered by his presence. Marcus asks Esther if he can call again and she agrees.

Olivia comes in to Grandma’s room and finds her going through her memory box. Olivia looks at a clipping of John’s baby hair, John-Boy’s knot booties and Esther high school dance card which had the last dance saved for Zeb.

Jason and Elizabeth arrive at the store looking for mail. Corabeth shows off a new hat that she has made which she claims is as stylish as any featured in the latest fashion magazines. As she goes through the mail for the Waltons she inquiries who Marcus Dane is as she looks at a postcard addressed to Grandma.

The kids and Grandma relax in the living room. Ben and Jim-Bob arm wrestle and Grandma tends to her canary. Elizabeth answers the phone and is bothered when she discovers that it is Marcus Dane for Grandma. She answers and accepts a dinner date with him.

Olivia picks out a new hat for Grandma that Corabeth has made. She gives it to Esther in hopes that it will give her the courage to follow through on the date with Marcus. Grandma is nervous and unsure of her feelings but her spirits pick up when she sees the hat. In the living room John and Marcus wait nervously for Esther to appear. They make awkward conversation about their work. Marcus says he feels like a nervous teenager on his first date. When she appears he gives her a beautiful corsage. After they leave John asks Livy if she thinks if Marcus is trying to court his mother. Olivia doesn’t know what else she’d call it. Her answer shocks John.

Marcus and Esther enjoy ice cream after a movie in a soda shop. Jim-Bob is surprised to see his grandma when he walks in with his girlfriend who he introduces as Tanya Bowman. When Jim-Bob tries to describe who Marcus is he is at a loss for a word. Marcus says that he is Esther’s beau which shocks Grandma.

John can’t sleep. It is past midnight and Grandma has been out for more than 7 hours with Marcus and is not home yet. He is concerned for her safety. A car pulls up and he races downstairs to the door. After Marcus leaves Grandma gives her son a perturbed look. John says that he is just getting her back for all the times she waited up for him. When he asks if she had a good time she defiantly replies “yes”.

A debate happens at the dinner table about Grandma’s active dating life. The family is split on their feeling about it and most aren’t comfortable with the idea. The next day Marcus comes calling for Esther. He greets Elizabeth on the porch while she applies nail polish to her nails. He senses that she does not think very highly of him. She says that he will never replace her grandfather. He says that he has no intention of that and that there was no one who could out talk, out work, or out dance Zeb Walton. He goes inside to great Esther. He gives her a decorative egg that she had once admired in a store window and asks if she would come spend the weekend with him in Richmond. He says that it will be proper, that his maid will see to that. He would like her to come meet some of his family and friends and maybe take in a concert. She agrees but later she struggles with her decision. John walks in to her room and says that he has been a bit jealous of all the attention that Marcus has been getting from her. He says that she should not feel bad if someone wants to take care of her, that she deserves to be taking care of after she has taking care of everyone in her family her whole life.

Marcus arrive the next morning but Grandma has changed her mind. He meets her by the shed where she is waters the rose bush that has grown and blossomed since he first planted it for her. Esther gives him the decorative egg back and a letter that he reads. She says that her heart is on the mountain and with her husband Zeb. She believes that Marcus was trying to give his heart to her when he bought her the egg which she cannot accept. They agree to remain friends.

Secondary Story:

 
 

Jim-Bob and Ben pull up to the store and Corabeth tells them that there is a gas ration and that she can’t sell more than $3 worth of gas. Jim-Bob is upset by this because he has a new girlfriend in Westham. He wishes that he built an electric car. Corabeth announces that she is going to go into the Millinery business and make hats. Yancy arrives and says that he might go into business for himself. He lets the boys try his homemade moonshine. Ben tries it and says it’s not fit to be drunk. Jim-Bob thinks that it would be better used as aviation fuel.

Jim-Bob locates Yancy’s hidden still and asked if he can borrow it for a science experiment.

Jim-Bob and Yancy still haven’t been successful in making a strong enough alcohol. Yancy asks Jim-Bob what he intends to do with it and he replies that he wants to make an alcohol pure enough to be used as fuel for a car. Yancy figures that it would have been done already if it were possible but Jim-Bob says there was no need in the past but now with a gas shortage there is a need.

As the two make progress on making their alcohol Jason pays them a visit with his guitar and sings “I Wish I was a Moonshiner” and Yancy joins in.

Jim-Bob and Yancy successfully make 190% proof alcohol. They have tried it in Jim-Bob’s car and then try it in John’s Woody wagon. Daddy walks up and is concerned that they will damage the engine but after Jim-Bob adjusts the carburetor it runs fine. Yancy says that they are going to revolutionize the car industry and that it is better to have “drunk cars than drunk drivers.” When John learns that they have made the fuel with grain and a still he warns them that the government won’t look to kindly on them.

Jim-Bob and Yancy get a letter fro the government that states that they believe that alcohol cannot be turned into fuel and therefore it doesn’t exist. They interpret that to mean that they can continue to make and use it as the won’t stop them from doing something that doesn’t exist.

Epilogue:

 
  "Marcus Dane came to our home many times as the years went by. He always brought with him a warm affection for all of us, but especially for my grandmother, and they remained friends for the rest of their lives."

Episode Notes & Interesting Facts:

 
 
  • Marcus Dane grew up near Grandma, living on the next farm down the road in Buckingham County. He went to college where he earned his engineering degree. His deceased wife's name is Gloria.
  • Olivia tells John that she had a boyfriend in the third grade by the name of Douglas Pineberg.
  • This episode is written by the husband wife team D.C. Fontana and Richard Fontana. Dorothy Catherine Fontana is known for writing episodes of Star Trek.

Additional Cast:

 
 

 


Guest Stars: Arthur Space (Marcus Dane) with: Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth), Robert Donner (Yancy Tucker), Lisa Lindgren (Tanya Bowman) Special guest: Ellen Corby (Grandma Walton)

 

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