A note of about the ratings... All ratings are out of four unless otherwise noted.
The new season of Adventures in Odyssey is finally here and it begins with a one-part mystery show! Fans are fairly uniform in their reaction to the show. Most thought: It was a good show but not a classic. It was fun to listen to, but it had a few plot holes. It was great to hear Nick (in fact we should hear more of him), but Rodney is starting get stale. It was a fun idea to hear a mystery about sounds, but the episode might have worked better as a two-parter.
Most fans also have a positive outlook for the rest of the season, hoping it will continue to get better from here.
I got a real kick out of the "I love my barking tree frog" t-shirt and Rodney's line about cooking rope in the microwave. That was great!
First it was great to have Nick back. I have always enjoyed him working at Whits End. I love that we get a description of how he looks. That t-shirt made me giggle.
However I was bummed that again we have annoying Rodney back. I'm tired of Rodney, his whiney voice, and how he always is breaking the law and getting arrested.
Like I said, the plot was a bit predicable, but not bad. It did have a bit of a twist, with the stolen statue being an inside job. Overall I enjoyed the episode.
It wasn't horrible or anything. But, I thought the story wasn't as strong as it could've been. Most of it was kinda fakish dialogue. And...Collins wasn't a very good vilain. She didn't really have a strong motive at all. Besides, in the past two weeks, I've watched about 8 hours of Poirot mysteries, so anything Odyssey made was pretty simple.
But still, the episode left with a few smiles on my face. Nick came back after his full season dissapearence. (Yes!) I've said it time and time again, the only reason people might hate Nick is the fact that he never appears. Why enjoy a character who pops his head up once every two seasons and acts as if he's always been around? He needs to be trying to reach for at least 3 episodes per season, just like the regular Whit's End employees. And I've also said that ever since Nick was Whit's sidekick in "The W.E," they should try it again. They make a very likeable duo. I would've liked a lot more if Nick had been more sarcastic with smart comments like before. His character seems to change with different writers. It's just something I notice.
It was good to hear from Rodney again. The only problem I have is that his character is used the same way too often. He's always the guilty/victim kind of person with stupid sayings (which are often funny, mind you). Odyssey either needs to upgrade him, or have something serious happen in his lifejust to keep us interested in his character. But that's basically it.
It wasn't the strongest start for an Odyssey season...but it did have it's advantages. Pretty good episode.
That said, I enjoyed the episode. No, it wasn't a classic. So what? I enjoyed it, and I would enjoy listening to it again. The "I love my barking tree frog" shirt was a highlight. It was good to have Nick back! Overall, it was a decent start to the season
1. It seems that there
has been far too much "audio detecting" lately. Not that I disapprove
of high tech (they also do things that are actually impossible), but they
just don't make it as exciting as Jason hacking into Blaggards computer in
2. Whit didn't sound
like Whit. Part of it was the dialog, but I've noticed that in recent years,
his expressions and mannerisms have not been "Whit-like." Whit used
to get angry and emotional. We haven't seen any really good scenes like this
in a long time.
3. Rodney and Nick also didn't sound quite right at the beginning. I think this is due to the fact that they haven't appeared on the show in so long, it took them a while to get back "in voice." I think they should have re-recorded the first few lines.
Even though I have complaints, I enjoyed the episode (despite the predictability).
The next thing: Nick's T-shirt. Why WOULDN'T Nick wear something like that to work... I mean this is a kid's place, not a fancy motel restaraunt. Beside's that, he would put an apron over top of the shirt, which would cover most, if not all of the slogan.
Another thing would be Whit's actor's acting. In the first scene, I think it was, when he was doing the press conference, it sounded as he was reading a script. Not good at all.
The last thing would be Whit entering Collins' vehicle. He may not have figured it out untill he compared the buttons the way he sounds like he's just realizing something. Perhaps when she realized Whit knew she was the culprit she turned turned towards the airport. Or the place the press conference was being held in could have been on the same route as the airport. Or even another possibility could be that Whit didn't know where it was going to be! A lot of things could have happened... it is a show. Not real life.
Yes, I'm serious. 3 million people in the United States are allergic to nuts and the health risks are quite severe. Ever wonder why you see labels on food products or in restaurants that warn the consumer certain foods may have come in contact with nuts? Because it's a very real and dangerous allergy that has life threatening results. I knew a girl in elementary school who had to sit away from the rest of the school because of her allergic reaction to just the smell. It was so bad that when we went on field trips, we were explicitly told never to bring any nut products with us. Then about seven years ago, my own grandfather was hospitalized after eating just one macadamia nut, though thankfully he pulled through. We're not just talking sneezing here. We're talking swelling of the throat, skin rashes, loss of consciousness, and even death. Thanks to Whit, any patron to his shop that requires use of the restroom may discover it actually to be their final resting place.
Hehe, no, I'm not some big health nut (ho ho!), but I'm fairly familiar with the allergic reactions relating to nuts of any kind. In fact, though I could be wrong, I believe it's illegal for Whit to use macadamia scented air fresheners (which don't exist), even if he were to explicitly warn customers in his shop. But I digress... I just wanted to point out how seriously illogical that particular piece of the plot is... but it doesn't really ruin the overall enjoyment of the show.
And happily, there's lot to like about this episode which I feel is better than last season's finale of "No Way Out / No Way In". For one thing, I find myself liking Nick more and more. At first he struggled to fight off the stigmatism associated with being a Mulligan, but has since developed into an interesting and deep character. I've also adjusted to the idea of him working at Whit's End (I was very opposed to the idea initially) and rather than view him as a minor contributor to a story, I actually think he could carry an entire show on his own. In fact, I'd love to hear more about Nick's romantic exploits. No, none of that nausea inducing posion we suffered with Connie and Mitch, but just good clean fun from a character who represents most typical teenagers.
He even lied to Whit... again. I mean, this is a character who doesn't conform to any particular convention. He's not perfect, like so many kids come across as these days, and he's not created to cause problems, like your typical foil to those said kids... he's in the middle. Nick's gained a lot depth since he was introduced as the "Smoking New Yorker" and there's plenty of potential for turning him into an endearing favorite.
The use of Captain Quinn was nice too, though he factored only a tiny bit into the episode's events. Kenneth Mars played him slightly differently than he did in the three previous shows he's appeared in ("Jesus Cloth", "Real Time", "The Perfect Witness"), but it was a comforting 'old time' voice to hear. It was also a nice touch to listen to Dave Arnold's voice (who reprised his role as Link Wainright from "Green Eyes, Yellow Tulips") and I got the distinct feeling I was listening to a classic AIO mystery. But can someone explain to me how Mr. Jenkins ("Cousin Albert", "The Unraveling") has become Lieutenant Jenkins? They are the same voice!
Hehe, anyway. Despite being fairly predictable, it's still an enjoyable mystery with a decent twist. I also liked the process of going through audio recorded, via motion sensor phones, and piecing together the puzzle in that way. Rob Jorgensen (who worked extensively on Radio Theatre after the Spring 2002 season), did an amazing job with a show that relied so heavily on the sound production and I hope it's remembered when the end of season voting begins! ;o)
Another solid beginning to a season that holds plenty of promise following an extremly successful Spring 2004.
Personally, I think that Whit should just join the police force. All the police officers do is bumble around and call each other on their static-producing walkie-talkies to update each other on info that Whit has discovered already.
So this is what the Official Site hint was for. Solve the mystery by listening to sounds. Very ingenious, Whit, to install motion-detecting microphones in all of Whit's End's telephones. More security! More government intrigue! That sneeze thing was very funny. I thought that Nick would go around to people and spray them with the deodorizer scent...
...There's one more thing that came to mind. This show had yet a new feel for AIO eps. Usually the season premiere welcomes you out with a heartwarming show brimming with the charms of Connie Kendall and John Avery Whittaker. This one has a new edge. I'm always trying to explain these things to you people, but can never get them out quite right. Do you know that feeling when you get a picture back from the developers, and it turned out really bright? The beautiful lawn that you were trying to take a nice picture of was slightly blinded by the glare. That was what I felt while listening to Whit and the news reporter talking on the lawn at McAllister Park, and throughout the show. Don't get me wrong, I totally enjoyed the show...but it was different than usual.
By now you all can tell that I haven't written a review in a long time and are now letting out all my steam. I hope that it's been enjoyable. I enjoyed this episode. It was a great mystery...
In the first scene of the episode, Whit is in a TV interview regarding a temporary display in Odyssey, containing an original 6" model for the Statue of Liberty. Immediately following the interview, we learn that the model has been stolen. Nick is accused of the crime, and Whit, Captain Quinn, and Nick spend much of the episode trying to find clues leading to the theif.
When Rodney Rathbone's voice first came on the episode, I thought, "Oh no, Rodney is the thief. How hard was that to figure out?!" But, I was pleasantly surprised that the mystery was not so easy to solve. When Nick was accused of stealing the model, I was sure that it wasn't him - he would have been too obvious as well. It wasn't until almost the very end that I realized the true culprit. If you didn't listen to the episode and you want to know who the culprit is, I'm not going to tell you! You'll have to listen to the episode and find out!
A really good thing about this episode was that Nick was in it. Nick isn't on AIO very often, and I think he had a good role in this episode. I hope we will hear more of him this season, and that we hear from Aubrey also!
I liked this episode, but I have a complaint. What happened with Whit's broken leg? Last season, Whit's leg was severely injured, but in this episode his leg isn't even mentioned. I think Whit should have at least been on crutches, or he should have mentioned something about his leg.
Overall, I thought this was a good mystery that was fun to solve. It wasn't exceptional, but not every episode should be. I rate it 3.5 out of 5 stars. If you haven't listened to the episode yet, you should!
Think on this...most Odyssey fans liked this week's episode, though there were a few who found it boring. Whether they liked the show or not, everyone liked the references to Odyssey's past (the pizza oven, Dr. Hawthorne). Most also liked the Imagaination Staiton being used in a new wayand the scanning features being used for the first time since they were introduced in "The American Revelation." Trent was also universally liked.
However, some found an entire plot about math problems to be boring and thought that Odyssey shouldn't sound like "edu-tainment." Some also found the theme to be "forced."
Best line: "Mr. Whitaker's really smart." "Yeah."
A side note on "story problems..." My college math professor thought they were pointless. For which I was very thankful! I so dislike those. If a train leaves the station... blech! But thats my un-genis opinion.
One thing that I kinda disagreed with. Trent releasing his frustation. I think that it is important for a person to work out their frustrations. I guess I agree that Trent went about it in the wrong way, meaning he shouldn't have done it on his own. He could have gone to his parents and talked with them and worked out how he felt when his teacher did or said something. I think it is valuble to vent. Journaling, talking it out, however you do it. Because keeping those frustrations inside is like shaking up a can of soda. Its gonna explode sooner or later.
What do I mean? Well, this episode featured several things that were left hanging from the past. The Treasure Room was never mentioned again, and so, it left that rope hanging pointlessely before. But now, it was put to good use. Dr. Hawthorne is another example. I really liked his character just because he reminded me so much of a Mr. Rathburn in the television show "Arthur." And it's so realistic because, everyone thought that his/her teacher was the meaness in the world.
Mr. Whittaker's talk to Marvin about scanning things into the Imagination Station was connected to this ep as well, putting it to good use.
And the most obvious example of all was the small mention of the Classic little Pizza Oven that was invented by a photocopier machine. I'm glad that our little friend is still around...
I just love connections like these because it brings Odyssey together as one big story...and it's a treat for some of us old listeners!
The episode itself was a very good slice of life episode. I don't really any complaints about this one, because everyone kept his character, and the acting was pretty good, and the storyline was just fun to listen to. Great show!
PS: Marvin's voice sounds a lot better now that it changed a bit last season. He's been growing as a very good character lately.
PS #2: I kinda wished Dr. Hawthorne could've said to Trent, "Your just how your brother was..." You know, just some reference of his past dealings with Jared DeWhite. Kinda scary to think that they both had to deal with him.
The moral tacked onto the end (and the title) seemed a little irrelavent to the story. It's not that it didn't fit at all, but if the point of the ep was to get that lesson accross, they could have done it in a more clear way, with a completely different story. But the upside of having the moral conform to fit the story, instead of the other way around, is that the episode doesn't sound too contrived.
All in all, a really nice episode.
1. It was a story about kids who had a simple problem. Not some big complex huge industry trying to take over the world, or conspiracy theories (those things are only funy when involving Jared.)
2. The characters (kids) were not the greatest actors. They sounded like real kids, no wise cracking every 3 seconds or smooth remarks. They were just kids.
3. Whit came out from under that rock he's been hiding under lately, and actually gave sound advice in several scenes. He became involved in the story, not just a cameo appearence.
4. The Imagination Station was used instead of the R.O.C for once!
5. It was not one big comedy, but rather, a lesson teacher. Although it had its moments: Exactly the way AIO should be.
6. Whit recieved a phone call from a parent asking him to help them with their kid, just like the old days. We never saw that with Alex, Mandy, or Liz...
7. Whit used some of his clever tricks to teach a lesson.
8. The musical score was very much like the olden days of AIO, none of the rock or jazz throne in, just that nice flute and piano and such... Very nice!
I don't mean to imply math isn't a fun subject. Afterall, it's a completely subjective experience. There are those who get it, and those who don't. People who love it for its challenges, and people who hate it for those same challenges. It took until the very last month of high school for me to finally come around and realize that I not only understood it, but was actually good at math! Unfortunately, this realization came so late in my schooling that all the years I had spent fearing a math problem were a simple waste of time. Similar to how I feel about listening to this episode.
Ouch. Ok, I'm being a tad harsh here. In the process of writing this review I went back and consulted "The Treasure Room" for some background information and realized something... despite my disappointment in "Think on These Things", the quality of shows today are so much better than they were four or five years ago. I'm happy to say this show could have been a lot worse than it actually is. (I mean, 15 minute shows? Who thought up that winning concept? :o) ) But compared with the thought provoking and entertaining shows we've been treated to in the recent past, this episode doesn't stand out as anything special... and suffers from not being an enjoyable diversion from everyday life.
Though, I don't want to dwell on the negatives. I first want to mention that I did enjoy the nod to "Whit's Flop", the return of Dr. Hawthorne from "Faster than a Speeding Ticket", and reference to the rarely used treasure room. I'm also glad the scanning capabilities are finally being employed in the new Imagination Station, which I still feel has a lot of potential to be an exciting story telling device if used properly. And considering the outcry from many people, Whit's Biblical reference is something that a lot of fans will appreciate hearing... these days it seems to be Chris' job to outline the lesson, though most people stop listening before she even opens her mouth. Finally, the acting for both Marvin and Trent wasn't bad and Dr. Hawthorne's performance was wonderful (I'm hoping we hear more from him soon... it's rare we have a teacher stick around for more than a couple of shows).
But what I didn't like goes back to my ramblings about mathematics. The idea of doing math problems in the Imagination Station is a really cool and practicle use for the machine, but I don't think it makes for a very exciting show. Homework is not something people enjoy doing, and the last thing they want is to tune into AIO and listen to twenty-five minutes of characters doing their homework. Sure things got spiced up a bit, but at times it felt like I was listening to an educational tape rather than an adventure in odyssey.
And did anyone else find it weird that Whit spent the night watching Trent and Marvin's recorded Imagination Station adventures? This day and age it wouldn't be surprising if the parents of one of the boys sued Whit for infringing on their son's privacy. While he did ask them if they wanted their lessons recorded to review later on, he neglected to mention he would also be watching them. I think it would have made for a less... uncomfortable thought process (for I have no better way to put it)... if Trent's yelling at his teacher becomes so disruptive that a boy (perhaps waiting in line for the Imagination Station), overhears him and runs to get Whit. This successfully alerts Whit to what's going on in the Imagination Station, without the vision of Whit holed up in a dark room reviewing tapes of children frolicking around in his invention. You already know my thoughts on Marvin and Whit's underwear (see "Nothing But the Half Truth" review), so there's no need to delve further into this topic.
This episode, unfortunately, is a hiccup in a string of several strong AIO episodes that have aired recently. However, I take comfort in hoping that much better episodes will air in the weeks ahead.
Oooooh! - The Treasure Room! (From the episode appropriately named "The Treasure Room".)
Ooh! - Dr Hawthorne! There's a comforting voice. But didn't he teach history in "Faster Than A Speeding Ticket"? And maybe living in America for so long has dulled his attractive British accent over the years.
Oooooh! - Pizza oven! That's a stretch. Back to the beginning. (The VERY beginning actually.) You'd think that Whit would toss that thing by now. Get a newer and better one. Maybe that was a nostalgia overdose, but, maybe not. What else was nice in this show?
Ummm. This show followed a very common AIO show format. Kid has a problem, Whit tries to help them solve it, they do something bad, Whit explains to them the consequences of their actions. Nothing too different or new. It's nice to be regular.
Need I say that it's also wonderful to have Trent and Marvin back, I thought they would fade out AIO in the last season. Good to see them back.
Oh, and it's nice to see that Whit trusts the kids to use the Imagination Station without his supervision. Ha. When he does that then the kids always do something bad, breaking that trust. But Whit has infinite room in his heart for forgiveness. Happy day.
What did I really think about this show? It was really predictable and cheesy, I thought. Doesn't Trent know that impertinence can be very painful? Doesn't he know that what Whit says is ALWAYS the right answer! Doesn't AIO know that we wouldn't like to hear a show entirely about math problems?!
... And the show taught
a nice lesson. It wasn't all that bad, I guess. If I was eight years old I
would have liked it more. If I actually rated these things...what should FBI
use, probably coffee mugs, right? Okay, so I would give it 2 and 1/3 coffee
This episode is about Trent DeWhite and Marvin Washington. They are both having problems with their math homework, so they use the Imagination Station to help them. However, they take advantage of the Imagination Station, and they don't use the program the way it was designed to be used. Trent uses it to yell at his teacher, and Marvin uses it to get the answers to his homework, and he just copies them down. In the end, Trent ends up yelling at his teacher in real life, and Marvin nearly cheats in real life. Whit talks to them and explains that we need to be careful what we allow into our minds.
This was an episode that had a lesson, and the lesson was obvious. Sadly, this isn't something that happens regularly anymore. Often, when an episode is finished, I think, "What was the lesson in that?" But, this week, I didn't think that, because there actually was a lesson (yea!). I thought the lesson in this episode was a very good one: we become what we think about. When we continually fill our brain with inappropriate or ungodly things, we will eventually start doing those bad things.
Something I thought was interesting about this episode was that, unlike all other instances of the Imagination Station being used, this was the first episode where the kids misuse the Imagination Station. Trent used it to let his anger out on his virtual teacher, and Marvin used it to cheat on his homework. But, both of these misuses of the Imagination Station contributed to the lesson. I thought it was a creative use of the Imagination Station.
Another thing I liked about this episode was the parallels to past episodes. Even though he was only a minor character, I enjoyed hearing Dr. Hawthorn from "Faster Than a Speeding Ticket" once again. It was also fun to hear a reference to the pizza oven, invented in "Whit's Flop". I like it when little things like this are included in episodes.
I don't have any complains about this episode - it was a good one! Great job!
With reviews joining the ranks of sharply divided shows like "Snow Day," "Called on in Class," and "Something Blue," the latest Adventures in Odyssey episode arrives. The zany, wacky episode has quickly attracted a crowd of lovers and haters with only a few in-between.
Those who loved the episode found it a funny and engaging ride that was different than the typical Odyssey show. They laud the theme (and how it was a surprise at the end) and enjoyed hearing from Jason and Connie.
Those who hated the episode found it childish and hard to follow. Many said they would rather hear an episode in "real life" Odyssey. Some also found it too similar to the Fairy Tale plot in "BTV: Forgiveness."
That said (whew!) the sound design was well-done, and *some* of the fairy-tale spoofs were amusing; therefore, I will give this a 1 instead of a 1/2.
I did not like the part about the "old man" weather man. This is because my parents told me that people think that the old man in the poem is supposed to be God. They always disapproved of the poem.
...kind of dis-organized...
Then the end came and the moral was revealed. And when it comes down to it, I liked this episode.
I am not against fun and sillyness. In fact I once wrote a one-act play in a very similar style to this episode. A bunch of messed up fairy tales resulting in a lot of laughter. However my play had a moral, too. I think sometime you need to see the end of the ride before you can enjoy it as it happens.
I plan on listening to this episode again, when I have time (and a quiet house) and really listen to all the jokes, sillyness, and plain creativity that was put into it.
This show was quite creative. Kudos to Mr. Fornof. It takes a wild imagination to stretch fairytales beyond their norm and make a fun filled story that doesn't lose the audiences attention.
The moral/lesson in this episode I found very important. Sin does effect other people. I have seen this evidenced in my own life. How one persons sin can have an effect on many other people. A simple lesson, but one I think we need to be reminded of. We can't just keep sinning and asking for forgiveness and think all is well. No, each of our sins effect other people, and often times people we love.
On another note, I loved the chemistry between Connie and Jason. Katie and Townsend work well together and this episode showed that. Of course I am a die-hard Connie/Jason shipper, but yeah
Not my favorite episode, but one that warrant several listens.
Even Chris admitted that this show was: "Kinda crazy, wasn't it?", it was very fast paced and somewhat quaky, but had some of the best humor bits of any Kid's Radio broadcasts...
This ep was really quite clever. All the stories intertwined somehow. After all this fun and silliness, I was worried about the moral that Connie was promising Jason all this time. Maybe "They all teach a lesson" or "All things work together for good.". But they went far deeper. All the fairy tales have one thing in common - sin. And sin has consequences that effect not only the sinner, but all of those involved as well. The real breath of air was when Connie tells her listening audience to see which one of the Ten Commandments that the people you watch on TV break. What a humbling realization. No matter what we see, there's always sin somewhere in the mix. And what grieves me even more is when people can watch hours and hours of entertainment mixed with profanities and inappropriate innuendo. So, the world is full of sin, Frank - get used to it. But just blowing over sin, even in media where we see it all the time - sin is sin. Harmless murder mysteries...innocent Gene Kelly musicals, simple soap operas...
But enough about deep life lessons, I really enjoyed the spoofs and smile-brining wackiness...it was a good episode. Hear it.
And the music was new and jazzy. How fun!
This episode is about Jason and Connie doing a Kid's Radio broadcast. In the broadcast, there are several sketches similar to fairy tales with a moral twist.
To me, the story in this episode wasn't that great. If I was an 8-12-year old, then I probably would have liked it better. I think it was one of those episodes geared specifically for young kids. I'm not in the target age range, so I don't think I enjoyed the episode as much as I would have if I were 8-12.
A positive thing about this program was the lesson: sin. It was good for AIO to have a lesson telling about the consequences of sin.
Another positive note about the episode: I liked the reference to Budapest. It reminded me of Mitch, and made me wonder how he is doing without Connie.
All in all, this episode wasn't quite up to AIO standards. However, the episode wasn't awful, so I'm giving it a 2.5 out of 5 stars.
Fans are giving much praise to "Stars in Our Eyes." In fact, it's probably getting the most positive reviews of the season. Fans liked the characters, the pace, and the message. In fact, many are noting that it's nice to have a show that didn't depend on plot as much as character. Fans liked the idea of the episode and hearing each person's commercial (especially Bart's). They also really liked hearing Davey Holcomb (a character from the very first Odyssey show) return to the show.
And, in an ongoing shift from negative to positive, most fans liked Wooton in the show.
And one more thing. ...The return of Davey Holcomb!!
One thing, yes, only one: It's such a stereotype to think TVStars are ditsy and not very bright. It's very untrue in many cases, actors are very brightand though their morals aren't always the best, they usually have lines to keep us from thinking that.
I was glad to learn from Connie that writers plan things out in advance! It seems that Wooton writes his Powerboy comics like I write my fan fictionone piece at a time, with no clue what will happen in the future. The purple bunny slippers seemed so...Wootonishit was great! A wonderful episode!
Wooton is crazy. We all know that, but he's such a lovable dufus that anything he says is gold. A lot of fans are still divided over their feelings for him, but it's become increasingly clear that he's an acquired taste that has thankfully been acquired by more and more people. His "commercial" idea made absolutely no sense but it was cute. I'm also thrilled to hear he's hard at work on Powerboy... and that the secret is safe in that muddled head of his.
Connie was good in this show too. She wasn't at the center of attention, which suits her character, as I tend to like her shows more when she's in the background (with notable exceptions of course). She's always been more of a supporting character for me and she fulfilled that role here. Her commercial was funny, hip and typical of her demographic. Very nice.
Tom... well he's always had a soft spot in my heart. After hearing his commercial idea it's no wonder he spends so much time with the horses on the farm... he hates the racket at Whit's End! Then there's Walker Edmiston's counterpart... Bart Rathbone. Who couldn't help smile during his idea? Hearing Bart's words come out of Connie and Whit was hilarious. Hard to believe this shyster started out as just the father of Rodney. He's such a unique and interesting person that despite his scams, he's an endearing character.
And that brings us to Whit, who over the course of the last several years seems to be pretty inconsistent. Some episodes I love him and other shows I want to strangle him. This episode, I loved him. His interactions with Tamika were genuine, his advice was sweet and not over bearing, and it reminded me why Whit is a person people want to be around. Fitting, since that's the theme of the episode.
So what is the point I'm trying to make? It all goes back to my mention of Odyssey being a character driven show. We love these characters to death regardless of the incredibly mundane plot. I mean let's look at it: A group of adults bounce ideas around for a tv spot and an old man helps a girl with her homework. Whoopie! But it works. We are so familiar with the characters that we just go along for the ride. Everyone is so rich and developed that it's just a joy listening to them interact. Of course there needs to be some plot to keep it going but it doesn't need to be complex. I've stated many times in my reviews that simple shows are the best of the self contained bunch. I love story arcs just as much as the next guy, but not every show can be part of a bigger picture. So, when a show like Stars in Our Eyes comes around, it's received by my ears with pleasure.
So is Davey Holcomb. Though two references in three episodes to "Whit's Flop" is a bit much. It is great to see what he's up to now that he's older, though these days it seems there's a reference to a past event or character in every other episode. I enjoy the occasional nod, but we've been bombarded by them! Fortunately Davey is more than just a reference... he's actually utilized in the story, despite the fact he's not the same actor. I guess not everyone falls into the Odyssey abyss after all.
This episode begins with Whit telling Connie, Tom, and Wooton that an old friend of his is going to be coming to Odyssey to film a TV commercial about Whit's End. Their job is to come up with a good commercial idea. Connie, Tom, and even Bart all think they have a good idea about what would make a good commercial. Whit combines all of their ideas into one commercial. When the man comes to film he commercial, he turns out to be Davey Holcomb from "Whit's Flop". He suggests a commercial dealing with the people at Whit's End, not just the fun things you can do at Whit's End. The commercial turns out very well. Tamika decides to do her hero report for school about Whit.
As I was listening to the first scene of the episode, I was getting the feeling that "Stars in Our Eyes" was going to be practically a copy of "A Day in the Life". As I continued to listen, I realized that I was wrong, and I thought this episode turned out very well.
This episode brought back a character that hasn't appeared on the show since the first episode. Davey Holcomb was a character that I didn't expect to ever hear from again, but I did like hearing him in an episode again. As I have said before, I like references to past episodes, and I like hearing from characters that have moved on.
So, the lesson of this program dealt with our heroes. A real hero isn't just some TV star; a hero is a person who has done something in your life that made a big difference. That was a good lesson for today's young people, because it seems like TV stars are idolized more than they should be.
Well, this was a very good episode, so I am going to give it a 4.5 out of 5 stars. I liked hearing the return of a past character, and I thought the lesson was an important one.
The race to get ready for church is apparently not unique to the Washington familymany listeners are saying that the show and the theme resonated with them. In fact, the tone of the reviews generally veers toward "I'm really starting to like the Washington family." While a few noted that Marvin was played by another actor (and were a bit uncertain about that), most were finally charmed by the family in this show.
Another major positive to the show was Bart Rathbone. Nearly everyone universally agreed that Bart helped the show immensely. Some are already nominating him for "best actor" of the season. The final scenes with Bart during the closing credits were dubbed "creative," though a few thought they took away from the theme.
Speaking of theme, some felt that the theme of the show was "tacked on," while others commented on how well it was woven into the drama.
Okay, I must confess that at this moment I'm thinking that is by far the coolest family. Wow. At first, I didn't like them at all. Then I grudgingly accepted them as part of Odyssey. But now I love them!!
And did I mention Bart is my hero? The Rathbones living next to them could lead to some AWESOME storylines...like this episode. Furthermore, this episode has renewed my faith in Odyssey, that new characters can find a place in our hearts and we don't have to pine after old ones.
Wow, Bart is really really cool. I wonder how many writers burst out laughing when they realized what could happen putting Bart with the Washingtons.
Did everyone listen to the very
end, after Chris was done talking?
Sister: How DO the Japanese do that?
I gave this ep two stars because of a few things. Did Tamika have to go spitting out the window? Did Bart really have to swallow a fish? This was pretty disgusting, but too much humor is that nowadays. Whatever happened to the good old Odyssey humor, which was in dialogue and actions, not disgusting moments? I would have rated this ep higher if it wasn't for that.
And one more thing. Why are almost all of Odyssey's fathers potrayed as bumbling men? The father is supposed to be the head of the household, but it seems that Mrs. Washington is the head of hers. Remember the Barclays? I didn't like them partly because of George and how he acted.
That said, I generally don't care for the family based episodes... I just like the ones with violence and explosions. With the lack of death and explosions present, it was okay.
However, I am getting tired of this style of episode, tacking on the moral at the very end, almost like an afterthought. Its like "entertain, entertain, entertain... oh yeah teach them something too." This is now the 3rd episode like this this season (the first two being Fairy Tal-e-vision, and Think on these Things). I can't even remember if Sounds Like a Mystery had a moral. I think an occasional fun show, with a moral tacked on the end is just fine. But 3/5 so far in the season just isn't cool with me.
That said, I LOVED this moral. Preparing for Worship, and the reason we gather together as a believers is so important, and is something we so easily forget. The seen with Tom in the church parking lot was the best part of this episode. I just wish it had been engrained into the story more.
Also, the whole tag with Bart, while funny (my siblings loved it) was unecessary and ill-placed. It detracted from the message of the show, and I found that sad.
So, despite the funny parts, the important moral, and hearing from the whole Washington crew again.... I have to give this episode a 2. I don't like rating so low, but this episode just isn't worth any more. I'm tempted to add a ".5" to my two, because the moral was so vitally important... but it was presented all wrong, I felt it was glossed over, then completely thrown out the window by the follow up with Bart. So that's that.
Any scene that had Bart in it, especialy the last two, just had me ROTFLMHO. (I heard it around 12 this morning.) I also liked that Doris was mentioned. (I wonder if that is a hint...)
[Adam]Just for that, we give it
an expensive 5 out of 5.
[Morgan]So now that means next week's episode must be even better.
Those who disliked the Washington
Family when they first arrived:
Now, I won't go on about the likes and dislikes of the Washington Family. Afterall, haven't we heard enough? It's clear, the Washington's moved inand we like them. It's about time to treat them like the Barclays.
Today, every church-going family could (almost) relate. Going to church, heyit's chaos! I mean, seriously...we're all dumb enough to chew gum when sleaping...all dumb enough to sleep with good clothes on...all dumb enough to to memorize the entire book of Psalms (though it never hurts to attempt)...and, well, all dumb enough to invite a certain man named Bart Rathbone into our house.
Okay, so, don't say it's not realistic or anything...cause you'd be right on that point. It's entertainment. The point of it is to be caught up with these strange circumstances. And what circumstances they were! They weren't stupid like they could've beenthey were funny. Hilarious, in fact! It was filled with clever lines and good humor. That's the advantage when three writers work on the same episode. To prove this fact, we might have to wait until next week's episode to see if it has the same effect.
Hilarious? "The Academy Award goes to none other than Walker Edminston for his performance of Bart Rathbone in the Radio Show 'Adventures in Odyssey'" I tell ya', the man was fresh, orginal and priceless. Right when you think he could be getting stale, he makes a surprise move. This show was packed with great Bart lines.
If I were to give a case study on the guy, I'd think his entire character was based on other characters. The thing that makes him funny is who he bugs and how he does it. If Bart bugs (for example) Tom Riley every single episode, then eventually, Bart will get stale. However, if he bugs Tom one epiosde, then Connie the next, and then an entire family one day, then he'll get better by his amount of variety. ...though, I kindof wished they could've eventually invite him to church...
The episode was well done. It had a nice flow, and though I was able to predict the moral of the show even before I heard it, it all fit nicely and had a nice surprise. The story was so complex that I was amazed how much a simple story of attending church could turn into an adventure.
I like these types of episodes. It's cool when they have comedies, and then have a serious endings...it adds different moods to the showtherefore making it interesting.
To be honest, I'm a bit disappointed that Marvin got a new actor. I wonder if it's a permanent change. If it's a permanent change, then it's probably because he moved away. I doubt that the crew would send him away because they thought he wasn't good. If that's the case, then chances are Xavier won't be back...which is very sad, because Xavier had so much potential. Don't get me wrong, I felt the new actor was quite good. But when you listen to a character in Adventures in Odyssey, you don't just learn to love the character, you learn to love the actor as well. And when they change the actors, no matter how much they sound the same, it's still different, and the character doesn't feel like family anymore. Perhaps we'll get some information later...
All in all, very good episode. And yes, I thought it was the best of the season. Good job Odyssey.
So how was the show? I liked it. Similar to Wooton, the more we hear from the Washington family the more they grow on us. With each passing episode they become richer characters for us to get emotionally attached to, despite changes that have been made. For one thing, this episode marks the third time an actor has taken up the role of Marvin Washington. I'll admit I was getting used to Jordan Calloway's portrayal, despite his inconsistency, but Kendre Berry appears to be very talented and is fortunate to have a wide vocal range. The change may be difficult to accept for some (those who actually noticed it) but I think it'll pay off in the long run, especially since it's clear the Washingtons will be around Odyssey for the next several years.
There was also no Xavier in the show, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. I do enjoy Xavier and think he's a great friend for Nick to have (after all, Nick doesn't seem to hang out with many people his own age) but I feel like Xavier is the third wheel in the Marvin/Tamika relationship. He's certainly a great option to have available, but until he can be utilized in a more interesting role, I don't mind him taking a backstage seat.
Now, numerous fans have complained that recent years have produced too many secular shows and they have a point. The point being that yes, Odyssey has produced a lot of secular shows... but I'm not automatically inclined to think that's a bad thing. I don't mean to imply Odyssey is better off in a secular market, but I do think it's an opportunity for Focus on the Family to reach out to more children than they ever could before. The shows are still rooted in the same Biblical truths and values that Jesus Christ upheld, but non-believers would have a hard time enjoying an episode if they are constantly reminded of these facts throughout a show. However, with enough exposure and subtle hints, you can gradually bring someone to Christ without beating them over the head. This episode revolves around the preparation for church without making someone feel uncomfortable, but it also appeals to the Christian fan base (which is far and wide the majority of listeners). It's a unique balance between the two and I'm pleased to see it executed so well.
Though I guess the Washington's witnessing methods didn't work too well on Bart, who was a delight as usual. And as an extra treat for those who took the time to listen to Chris, you'll notice during her wrap-up another two scenes with Bart. One in which he puts cyan pepper on a piece of cheesecake and the other where he sticks his head in a fishbowl and inadvertently swallows a fish. Perhaps this device that could be used more often to entice listeners to actually listen to Chris? Sitcoms usually have a teaser during the credits, so why should Odyssey be any different? Especially when what Chris has to say is so important.
In "Sunday Morning Scramble" we hear the Washington family "scramble" to get ready for their Sunday morning church service. They have been late every Sunday for the past eight years, and this week they are scheduled for a family Scripture reading in the church service. The family, especially Elaine, is determined to be on time. Unfortunately, incident after incident seem to slow them down. First, Marvin gets gum in his hair. Next, Bart shows up. Thirdly, Tamika wants to win her "sticker contest" so she wants to memorize verses and invite friends. And worst of all, the family doesn't even know the verses that they will be reading on stage! When they get to the service (thinking that they are late), they are surprised to find that Tom is the only person there. The family had forgotten to set their clocks back an hour!
This episode was a very unique one. AIO has never done an episode about Daylight Savings, and they have never done an episode about the rush of getting ready on Sunday mornings either. I thought this was a good episode. We seem to be hearing more and more from the Washingtons.
I was disappointed to hear that Marvin is being played by a different actor now. I suppose this new actor is probably better than the previous one, but I am always very bothered when AIO switches the actor of a main character. But, as I said, this new actor will probably do a better job.
I can relate to this episode, and I'm sure many of you can too. It seems that no matter how hard I try to be ready on Sunday morning, I always end up being later than I would have liked. However, I've never forgotten to set my clock back for Daylight Savings before. I guess that would be a good way to get people to be there early!
I thought the idea of a family Scripture reading was a unique one. I've never been to a church where a family got up and read verses. That might be something that would be good to have for some churches.
I think 4 out of 5 would be an appropriate rating for this show. This was a very unique topic that has never been covered before, and sadly unique topics aren't as common as they used to be (after over 550 episodes!). I also thought the family verse reading was a good idea.
And I also think that the Washingtons have a fixation with using past occurrences as an excuse for not trusting their father. (That was a mouthful, but I'll try to explain.) "Remember the time that you tried to fix it with my curling iron and a scrunchie?" "Dad, remember the snowflakes?". Now, personally, I think that Ed Washington is a fine, upstanding man, and he's fully capable of performing whatever he put his mind on to do, but his kids and wife don't seem to trust his abilities so much. This could play out to dastardly results in their teenage years.
This review has been overly negative, I know, but I couldn't in good conscience leave those things unsaid. I enjoyed the humor bits, and Bart was for the most part funny. (as always...) It was worth hearing, but not enough to give it five stars.