"The Waltons" The Ceremony (TV Episode 1972) Poster

(TV Series)


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Walton children learn about Jews
FlushingCaps6 February 2014
Warning: Spoilers
This is an interesting episode, not bad, not all that good, that deals with a family of three, Professor Mann, his wife, and their son Paul coming to live on Walton's Mountain.

When they arrive, the son is left inside their taxicab, which attracts the interest of the Walton children, surprised at seeing a taxi come all the way from Charlottesville. They start a friendly conversation with the boy while he sits inside, but when his father comes out of the store, he quickly excuses them and leaves, seeming most unfriendly to the Waltons.

Just as they are settling in at their new home, next to a pond/lake, we viewers see what prompts so much of the remainder of the episode, although none of the series regulars know about it. A window is accidentally broken by a misfired rock from Jim-Bob's slingshot. The Mann's "hit the dirt" and began worrying if they will ever find a place that is safe. They fear their safety as Jews is no better here than it was in Germany.

Because of this intense fear, the professor tells his family that they must not only stay away from others as much as possible, speak only English, but that they must pretend not to be Jewish. They will celebrate no Jewish holy days and son Paul cannot even have his bar mitzvah, due in a couple of weeks.

This causes much tension in the family. Paul is allowed to become friendly with the Walton children and he comes to trust them enough to reveal his family's story. He is most upset at his father for denying him something he has been eagerly looking forward to.

After a big fight among the Manns, it is Zeb Walton who gets the professor to realize the mistake he is making and bring about a resolution to the problem.

The strengths of this episode are in the scenes where the Walton family learns about the Jewish faith. They innocently notice the many similarities between Jews and Baptists. I also enjoyed an early scene where John-Boy confronts the professor, letting him know how upset he was at the way he was treated.

To anyone who complains that the Walton kids were too "goody-goody", this presents proof that they were not that way at all. When Jim-Bob accidentally breaks the window, he and Ben run away and tell nobody. It would have seemed unrealistic for these young boys to man-up and confess in this situation, and I liked the fact that they acted like real little boys who simply try to get away with a mistake that causes some damage.

They do fess up when asked (apparently, because it wasn't on screen, at least not in the version I just watched)and we are told they will pay for their mistake.

I was able to put myself in Paul's place and truly understood his actions and feelings. Not the greatest episode, but, I think, far better than the earlier reviewer here believes.
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First Bad On
garyldibert27 February 2010
Warning: Spoilers
This episode aired November 9th 1972 with this opening. When I was growing up in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia during the Depression of the 1930's, times were often difficult and unsure; but I don't think any of us ever realized how safe and secure our lives really were until that summer when a family arrived in Waltons Mountain from Germany. A Jewish family, Professor Mann, his wife Eva, and their son Paul are refugees who have fled from Nazi Germany. The young family tries to live in an isolated mountain cabin on Waltons Mountain, but they live in fear of being persecuted in their new home as well. To try to avoid any further problems they decide that they must pretend that they are not Jewish and that they should no longer observe their Jewish customs. Paul is devastated though, because he has long been looking forward to ***********his *** ******* on his 13th **********. His drastic actions then cause the Walton family to become involved and finally it is arranged that Paul's ******* ********* will be ********** in the Walton home, with the Mann's new friends present. To me this was the show of the Walton's that wasn't interesting. It didn't have the spirit like some of the other shows I give episode 3 weasel stars.
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