The TV specials were a wonderful way to see the original actors take on the characters again after seeing them in the original series for so long. But I've often thought that the TV movies just didn't seem to 'fit the profile'.
In my opinion, I thought the TV movies weren't really in sync with the actual series, it's like all of the sudden they just couldn't think of anything so they went nuts!
The occurrence of a few of the events taken place don't seem to match up to the previous years. And as stated before on this forum, I was so disappointed by the writer's choice of girl John Boy marries... a city girl who despises the country and has a rough time fitting in with his family roots? I felt like all we saw is John Boy trying to comfort Janet who constantly complains about where he's from, who he is, and who he grew up with. If he wasn't comforting, they were arguing!
The earlier specials were much better than the later ones, especially the story lines. By the last one, there is no Virginia Walton, Charlie Walton, Jonesy Jones, Paul Northridge, no news on Ben and Cindy adopting, and no explanation of Clay and Katie Jones' entrance into the family after Mary Ellen's accident in "A Mother's Day on Walton's Mountain".
I loved that Erin married Paul, he really was a great character. It seems understandable that he felt crowded and it worked out when they decided to move to a new house, but stay in the same area. What I don't quite understand is why did they have to end up divorcing?? I was so saddened by it. And then we have the whole story with Ben and Cindy... that was just pathetic.
The story-lines in general weren't all that good. Ashley Longworth coming back into Erin's life, and it just so happens to be when she's newly engaged to be married?? A rather annoying reporter, Aurora Jeffries is sent to document John Boy's visit and family? They needed stronger story lines additives and not so weird/crazy ones in my opinion. But then of course, maybe it is just mine.
Alas, my favorite thing about all the TV specials is we saw all the original actors come together. That's what I truly love about them.
And if they do another one, I'd like to see Elizabeth get married to Drew (I love their current relationship!) and it be centered around Christmas. No more Thanksgivings... all though it is a WONDERFUL holiday, I'd like to see something new. Oh and can't forget Jim Bob! I wonder what the writers will conjure up for him??
I'm not all too sure how the writers will work out Erin, Ben and Cindy, and Mary Ellen and Jonesy but, it'll be interesting for sure!
And I guess that'll give me another opportunity to type up another rant concerning my opinion of it.
I like all the Waltons specials in spite of the flaws, but the only thing that really bugs me is that the Walton "children", after being married, raised kids and had stable jobs and careers after so many years always come back to the old homestead and act like misguided children, unloading their personal problems on their poor old parents and indulging in so much soap opera melodrama.
I'm no insider but, it seems to me the purpose of the three movies in the 1990s was to bring closure to John-Boy. If you remember, the series ended with Robert Wightman's John-Boy as a struggling, frustrated writer with no apparent direction in his life. Frankly, I was hoping the movies would follow the Hamner trail and take him to Hollywood to be a television producer. To a lesser extent, the same is true for Olivia as in the later seasons she is away from Walton's Mountain but, never written out of the series. John pretty much becomes the mayor of Walton's mountain and the other kids were pretty well dealt with in the series: Jason's the country musician, Mary Ellen is a doctor, Erin is the career girl with the soap opera life, Ben is running the business, Jim-Bob is the James Deanish, motorcycle, car, and airplane forever adolescent, and Elizabeth is the brainy ambassador to the world.
It is too bad the whole direct-to-DVD/Blue Ray thing did not turn out to be economically viable. The Waltons would have been a terrific candidate for an update movie every now and then.
Anyway, PLP927, ranting on a favorite topic is wonderful fun, isn't it?
Well, let's face it -- the sole purpose of the made-for-tv movies was to make money.... for all those involved.... they certainly weren't doing it for us but they knew we would watch!!
I haven't watched them often -- a couple of times, maybe. Just don't like them at all.... had no need for "closure" regarding any of the characters.... It's good to see some of the actors but I really could have lived without all the "gems" (discrepancies).... They would have been so much better if the writers/producers had done a bit of research -- I think even the actors could have provided some context! Oh, well.....
I also would like to see a TV movie done without all the traditional drama attached. There are so many characters... the writers would be tripping over themselves to get all the details correct.
How about a fun episode centered around the kids getting together (with their respective spouses) and finally finishing the house of John and Olivia's dreams for them in honor of an anniversary. I know... John Sr, would have passed on by this time, but who really wants to see a Walton movie without him?
I think everyone who knows the Walton family would just like to see them all together and having a good time recalling memories and catching up. No need for Drama.
Well, it's always nice to see the Walton family together again, but as the cast members themselves said, at least I heard Michael Learned in person talk about it, they weren't that impressed with the scripts of the reunion movies. That said, I am sure that they were thrilled to receive work and their paycheck. I was disappointed that Ike and Corabeth were not in "A Walton Easter," although he said that he was in all of the reunion movies in his autobiography and some of his obituaries said the same thing. However, viewers very quickly pick up on the fact that he was not. I also wondered why Hal Williams was left out when Lynn Hamilton appeared in two of the 90s reunion movies. I guess we can keep wondering about all these things until the cows come home. HA!
One of the things that I hated about the Walton's movies of the 1990's (and I can't remember which one it was). The way John was treating Ben over a disagreement about a business decision. They were supposed to be partners, but it seemed like it was either John's way or the highway. Ben was running the place in his early 20's when John was with Livy in AZ. In the time frame of these movies, Ben would have been close to the age of John when the series started and John is treating him like a five year old.
I would have liked to have seen John and Olivia have their mountain top house. With Ben and Cindy taking over the old house, with maybe a couple of more kids.
I actually loved these movies yes, they didn't do much good to the timeline, but then again, neither did AJ Covington never being seen again and then being seen again a couple of years later, or the family losing everything in the fire and then having everything back, or John Curtis physically aging about one year over the course of about seven years. And as for doing bad things to the characters, I don't think anything in the movies comes close to Curt's survival! I don't really see that there's anything especially wrong with them, I was certainly very excited when I first saw them! (I have to admit, I have only watched them once though).
I wonder what they did with the new house on the mountain. They probably rented it out or turned it into a bed and breakfast.
Speaking of the fairly recent phenomenon called a "bed and breakfast" -- we had tried many of those... and eventually gave up with the idea.... most of the time, we felt spied on by the owners, uncomfortable just sitting in the "living room".... constantly afraid we might unwittingly make some "wrong move".... along with lots of insincere, cheesy smiles.... much better to find an old country inn with an actual restaurant and a welcomed feeling of privacy.
I liked all the Walton TV Movies myself,I also think Cindy should had been in the last 2 movies.
I agree, she should have. I have heard it was because the budget they had to make the movies. That they just didn't have enough money to have everyone back. I wonder if they even contacted her...you never know there are so actors how there that actually do a project for nothing. They even made one without Ike Godsey (Joe Conley) & Corabeth (Ronnie Claire Edwards).
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