2004-2005 Review Summaries

Reviews for: October 2004 | November 2004 | December 2004 | January 2005 | February 2005 | April 2-16, 2005 | April 23-30, 2005 | May 2005

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Welcome to the Spring 2005 Review Section. This is your chance to review the latest episode and interact with fans about the newest evelopments.

A note of about the ratings... All ratings are out of four unless otherwise noted.

569: The Invisible Dog

Episode Information

Consensus: Thumbs Up (30/37 positive reviews)

"The Invisible Dog" is generating positive reviews, both for it's story and for the continuing strength of Eugene Meltsner. Almost everybody agrees that Eugene has given Odyssey a new lease on life. Most enjoyed having him as a substitute teacher, with some wondering why this kind of thing had never come up before.

The two most-talked about scenes, however, didn't involve Eugene. The first was a scene where Lester tells Trent about his dog getting hit by a car and Trent shares a secret from his past. The writing, performances, and especially the use of sound effects were praised on this scene.

The second memorable scene was the ending scene where Trent gave Lester a puppy. Most agreed it was sweet.

Review by Ruthie, age 12

It was really good! I liked the ending, as if Trent thought he "SAW" the dog! Also, Lesters pet bird!

Review by Alex, age 11

It was funny. Not the best or worst.

Review by Sandra, age 12

I really did not like it very much. I do not like it when they use people like Lester in their episodes. It was funny when Eugene was teaching school, though. I loved it when he finally realized he was just blabbing about history and when he was going to finally teach him everything they needed to know to do the test the bell rang! That was hilarious!

Review by Sheri, age 14

I thought it was ok. It was more of a "classic" episode, which is what I like to hear. :-)

Review by Elizabeth, age 14

Great episode! I LOVED that Lester was in this episode! It was really funny that Eugene was Trent's substitute teacher! And it was nice to find out Trent is in seventh grade! Hmmm... that must put Jared in about ninth grade! It was really sweet about Lester and his dog. For some reason I was sure that the lesson was that you can't see God, but you have to trust that He is there. It was compassion instead, that's okay! I am glad that they are pursuing the charachter of Lester further! I despise when they make an episode with a great charachter in it and you never hear from that character again! This was a great average day in Odyssey episode.

Review by Nathan, age 16

It was great, but not the best. I loved Eugene...he was funny. I loved the invisible funeral. I was laughing. I couldn't help it!

Review by Paul B

Eugene is a sub teacher in this show. And Lester is back with a friend. Oh, did I say that his friend was a invisible dog? Trent tries to help Lester, trying to tell him in a nice way that the dog isn't real.

Review by Josh, age 16

This ep was awesome. It had a great meaning. Okay, here is my top six rating for the characters for this ep:
6. Max Hampton
5. Connie Kendall
4. Jonh Whittaker
3. Trent Dewhite
2. Eugene Meltsner
1. Lester

Keep up the good work, AIO...and God bless.

Review by Michael, age 23

After last week's rather uninspiring episode, we finally get back to some more solid material. It's nice to see AIO is interested in things other than a sappy Hollywood-like cartoon action and jargon we've unfortunately come to expect. It takes a gift to bring a mentally-handicapped person into a storyline and still keep it interesting. It was nice to see Whit and Connie having a normal conversation with Lester rather than the conversation being awkward and uncomfortable.

That said, we need to get onto a more negative footing and that unfortunately is Eugene. After his starring performance in "Two Friends and A Truck", Eugune is reduced to being a dry, bumbling substitute teacher. Never mind the fact that we've never seen Eugene teaching before or that the writers drop Eugene into a class without bothering to give some background. It was all very strange and it definitely didn't work. I know
the writers are wanting to re-introduce Eugene again but please, put him in natural situations Eugene is likely to be in.

That brings to light a problem AIO has on their hands. Eugene was largely the brainchild of writers that no longer make major contributions to AIO. That said, I'm worried Eugene is no longer going to be the character we've
come to know and love. I mean no offense to the current writers but they've butchered so many characters on AIO that I'm almost expecting Eugene lose most of his character and become a one-dimensional person like the majority of the characters on today's AIO.

I was glad AIO brought a lesson or two into the episode but like most episodes within the past three or four years, it lacked spiritual dimension and power.

Review by Bradford G, age 14

A very good episode. It's about time we hear Eugene be a substitute teacher. In fact, Eugene helped me out with math, since I was having a hard time learning what he was teaching in this episode. I also think the emotional scene between Lester and Trent was very well done, and it's good to hear from Lester again. It's all good to see that Odyssey has gotten back to normal.

Review by Jake Bernier

This episode was good. It was nice to hear from Lester again, and it was pretty cool that Eugene was teaching geometry at school. The students didn't really understand him....I don't blame them. I probably wouldn't understand him either. It was kinda sad when Trent told Lester his dog crashed into a car. Overall, this was good one.

Review by Evil Chick (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

Good show! I loved the fact that Eugene was a teacher. He should have done that years ago! And how he went on and on about things that were really useless for the middle schoolers was very funny! I also thought it was good to hear from Lester again. Nice to know that he's ok. The whole thing with the invisible dog was interesting. Trent seemed a little more intelligent in this ep that he normally was. But, I really didn't like the way he just took the situation into his own hands, and told Lester that Ralf didn't exist. I think he should have talked to Whit about it, and let him handle it.

All in all, it was a good ep, though! It's still so wonderful to hear from Eugene!

Review by Christian Cowgirl (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

This was the best one I've heard in a while. It really touched me personally, something Odyssey has only done once or twice. I can sympathize with Trent; I also watched my puppy get hit by a car and was helpless. I can hear the car screeching and the dull thud as she was hit, much like Trent did. I think that was awesome that they had those background noises made it come alive. The music was great, very moving.

I type this with tears in my eyes, thank you Odyssey for such a great ep.

Review by Dr. Watson (Town of Odyssey)

I thought this was a very good, solid episode. I, too, liked seeing Eugene teach—it was rather humorous. It was also good to see the lesson on compassion and Trent's change of attitude toward Lester.

However, the show could have added more Scriptural emphasis and less pop psychology. I believe "God" was mentioned only once in the show. I mean, why do we have to wait until the end of the show to hear the Scriptural application from Chris when Whit can just as easily say it in the program?

That's my only small complaint with the episode. Otherwise, it was very nicely done.

Review by Trent DeWhite (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

"The Invisible Dog" saw the return of one of my favorite character...none other than the real Trent DeWhite himself! Heh. I knew I picked a good guy to impersonate. Apparently, he was the only one to pass the exam. Ha. I will continue to imagine him as a younger version of Eugene. Definitely akin to myself.

Review by J-man (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

While I liked this episode, I didn't like it at the same time. The Eugene teacher part was hilarious, but I didn't really like the Lester part. Don't get me wring, I liked that they included Lester in this episode; it's just that I didn't particularly like how they included him and what he said.

Review by J-man (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

This was a good, nice episode except for one little thing. When Whit made his "There must be more this this invisible dog. I'll look into it" line it seemed more like he was back in the Novacom story trying to solve conspiracies. I was thinking "Whit, lighten up. It's not that odd that someone like Lester would have an invisible dog." I have a feeling it was one of those lines that seemed better on paper.

Review by Jonathan (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I am continuing to be absolutely flabergasted at how much Eugene's return to the show has improved things. This season is quickly becoming one of my favorites.

This episode followed another tried-and-true method: A/B story- follow the two plots, tie them together at the end, and throw in a spiritual application at the end.

Is this 2005? (Yes, I know I asked that last week, but I have to ask it again b/c I still don't believe it).

As for the actual story, I like it. It was nice to hear from Lester again. He's one of those characters that, if used sparsely, can bring something to the show. And the Eugene bit was good too. I wasn't surprised that he, at first, stayed at a level far above those he was teaching, and later had to face up to the fact that that wouldn't work. It reminds me of "Do, For a Change."

I also agree with Christian Cowgirl—the sound effects during Trent's flashback were marvelous.

I'm usually really hesitant to say that we've made a return to "classic" Odyssey after hearing an episode I really liked, because the next few might not be so great. But this is the third episode after the "something big" episodes that I've absolutely loved, and I'm getting close to saying it—"classic Odyssey" is back.

Keep up the terrific work, Odyssey!

Review by JesusFreak777 (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I loved hearing Eugene as a sub. That was great. I agree with Jonathan about this being more like a classic. I loved hearing from Lester again too.

I did have one concern. The proof that Trent used on Lester's dog bothered me. You see it's almost word for word what many of my classmates and friends have used to disprove the existence of God. I'm kinda surprised Trent didn't realize it when he said it, but also very glad. Maybe I only noticed it because I've heard it so much.

Anyway, other than that one little thing I absolutely loved this ep. It reminded me of my 3rd period class. (I TA for a geometry class.) So I actually understood Eugene's remblings for once.

Great job, Odyssey.

Review by Bmuntz (Town of Odyssey)

I am so happy! Me and Trent both have beagles. Mine is not named Bingo but does have an sorta Odyssey name. Wellington. I am now very worried he will get hit by an car.

The scene with Trent and Lester was great in an sad way. The sounds made it come to life. I could see the dog getting hit in the road.

Eugene as a teacher was great, but I thought that Trent was older then grade 7.

This show also added an problem to the Odyssey map. But that's just so out of whack already it dosen't really matter. Trent said he was at the park, so McAlister Park and his house was across the street. So another person the lives right by Whit's End and the DeWhites are supposed to live on another street.

Ed Note: It's doubtful that the DeWhites live in the same house that they lived in before they moved away. They were gone for years so someone else probably moved into their old house. However, a lot of people do seem to live near McAlister must be huge!

Review by EugeneFans Cousin (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

After last week's are negative review, I was really hoping for a good episode. I'm happy to announce that my wishes came true. There were very few things that I disliked about this show; the story was good, there were several humorous lines, and it was something that most people can relate to, which is a great quality. In fact, I can't think of anything I didn't like about this episode. I loved the scene with Eugene grading papers, and the scene with Lester crying in the alley was very touching.

Review by Me (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

Like others, I must totally concur. Eugene seems to be one of those people, whithout whom, Odyssey would cease to be Odyssey.

As for the episode, it was excellent. The dialogue was good, Eugene was using large words, humor was present, and the ep had a good point. The only thing of which I'm not sure is how Eugene got the teaching job. Other than that, he made a great sub. One I will definitely listen to many times in the future.

Review by Chandler (Town of Odyssey)

I'm amazed as well at this discovery [of how much Eugene improves the show]. Sure, I missed Eugene like everyone else did but it's truly amazing how much better the show seems with him around town. I'm also impressed with the way they've used him so far considering I don't really expect him back working at Whit's End. Way to go AIO!

Review by Sputnik (Town of Odyssey)

I loved it. I used to have an invisible dog. I also really loved the part where Eugene was teaching the class. It totally fit.

Review by free_born (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

It was refreshing to have someone "unusual" in the show. I don't mean by that, someone weird, but someone not usually used.

Review by HarlowRoxMySox (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

My brother walked out at the Trent/Lester scene. You see, we just put my dog down last Friday. but the episode was a good one, and I loved Eugene as the substitute teacher.

Review by frogalwyz (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I thought it was a good episode. I liked having Connie, Eugene, Whit and a kid all in one episode like old times. I really liked Eugene as a teacher, too. I love Trent! He is my favorite kid right now. (Before him, it was Jimmy)
I didn't like Lester in "No Way Out/No Way In"...but I liked him in this episode. He seemed liked a realistic character. Good job, AIO.

Review by Catspaw (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

Wow! I never expected to hear from Lester again, but I was gald that we did. I found Ralph to be amusing, but also touching. I liked the scene at the end where Lester pretended to see the "puppy" that Trent gave him. I thought that it was cute that Lester knew what Trent meant to be in the box!

Eugene as a sub teacher—what a fabulous idea! I think that Eugene would be a great teacher, and it was good to see him humble and willing to accept help at the end of the ep, realizing that his approach was not working, and accepting advice. I feel a lot of pity towards those poor students, though—I find math bad enough without my know-it-all teacher who had no idea that nobody (except the way-too-smart kid) knows what's going on! I wonder if John Fornof knew all that math stuff, or if he researched it all specifically for this ep?

One thing I found weird was Trent's presence in the class. At the end of "Potential Possibilities," it sounded like Trent was going to go back to the gifted class, so he could be all that God wanted him to be and stuff like that. Now he's still in his normal class. I wonder what happened? I'm sure that storylines are easier with characters we already know, like Marvin, and I really liked this ep, but I would have liked some small explanation about the gifted class thing.

Review by gimp80995 (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I liked the ep for the most part. I think Trent could have been a little more sensitive to Lester all things considered. But it was pretty well done, especially the flashback scene.

Review by Arwen (The Town Hall)

Brilliant! I liked it. Why in the world did no one think of Eugene as a sub sooner!

Review by Mandy Straussberg (The Town Hall)

It was alright... better than last week's, but not very good, in my opinion. It was kind of boring, to me, anyway.

Review by Broadcast (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

I had quite a bit of post-episode comments when I read the description of the show. Every ounce of my body told me that this would be on my top ten of worse episodes. This was surely going to be a replay of "Idol Minds." An invisible dog? Just the title seemed to be a frightful sign...

Worse off, I was worried about what they had done to Lester. First off, I think reappearances of characters are like Movie Sequels. They were good the first way through...but chances are they'll ruin it the second time. Lester was simply amazing in "No Way Out"...his acting and character was perfect for the part. But would they be able to pull it off once again? Why ruin an already decent character?

Though, this hasn't always been the case. I found I enjoyed Irving and Solly much more than the first time I heard them. So, character development could also bring about a better character. Thankfully, it was the same writer for both episodes. Lester seemed to be John Fornof's creation, and chances are, Lester would remain true to his character.

My uneasiness wasn't immediately cured through the first few minutes of the show. The timing for that Odyssey theme was terrible, first off. If you can't do it right, stick it at the beginning of the show. Secondly, I found out that the Invisible Dog wasn't something from Eugene...but from Lester; and was his imaginary friend.

As a brother of two mentally retarded siblings, I was wondering if handicaps actually do have Imaginary friends. Afterall, to concoct a friend who isn't there, it takes quite of bit of intellect. I always took that, aside from talking to themselves (in the down-syndrome category), they always depended on what was actually there. However, after asking my mom, she said that it all depends on how smart they are...and Lester is actually so smart that he knows he's not smart (which is actually the downside of being a smart handicap; to be so smart that you know your not...).

Finally, the final uneasiness had was to do with Eugene. He sounded almost at his greatest point of intellectuality, which is okay. It's only that I always assumed that he had learned to bring himself down to other people's levels over the years. Maybe being away so long made him smarter. He sounded almost; a robot.

So, did I enjoy this episode? Yes, every one of my uneasy feelings got cured. The ending with Lester ended up nicely. Eugene actually became human at the end...and learned something and came to a conclusion. I enjoyed that very much. "And that, Mr. Hampton, is it."

"B-I-N-G-O. B-I-N-G-O. B-I-N-G-O, and Bingo was his name-O!" The scene between Lester and Trent outta be on that "End of Season Awards." It was touching to hear a...well...touching scene between an adult and a kid. Those types of scenes are usually between two adults.

I find Trent's character was so similar to his brothers'. I mean, we could've practically stuck Jared in there, and it would've been the same (except we would've enjoyed it more). The whole, "analyzing" bit was totally Jared. Speaking of which, I'm starting to miss that guy...

It's good to hear from Max again. I wonder why they're having him stick around since his voice broke. I was really expecting Marvin to be there in his place. There has been talk about Marvin appearing in every episode ending in a "nine" since he's been here. Today, ladies and gentlemen, we can forget that theory...because episode 569 did not have him.

It seems that Odyssey hasn't been dealing with the same old themes. Don't get me wrong, we've heard the theme of "compassion" many times, but this episode took a different view on it. Some episodes would have a 25 minute broadcast dealing with a very specific part of a bigger theme. Just take a look at some themes such as lying; "Half-Lies," "Speaking the truth in Love," and "A Glass Darkly'...these themes have been just skimming another broader subject...ending up teaching us about more specific things than simply the usual well-known theme. If you don't get what I mean, forget it.

One major complaint about this episode; and that's the title. Wow, "The Invisible Dog?" When do we need to have two titles that almost completely resemble each other. Even still, the dog wasn't was imaginary. I mean, you couldv'e had; "The Invisible Pet," or, "Bingo, the Beagle," or..."My Dog, Ralph."
Well, there's already "The Imaginary Friend" it kind was in the middle of two episodes if it decided to call itself, "The Imaginary Dog." ...

All in all; a very decent episode. I enjoyed it, and it kept me guessing to what the moral to the story was. Eugene and Lester were great, and I found Connie kept at her "to-the-side" character nicely.

Good job, Odyssey! Two thumbs up!

I suppose things will start to heat up next week. Rating; 9/10.

Review by kingshasta (The Town Hall)

I loved this show. Eugene was spot-on, loved how Whit "gently" corrected him in that near-the-end scene. Classic AIO.

Review by Boa (The Town Hall)

I really liked it. I thought Lester would only be a one episode character but they used him well. But I agree with the others though, don't use him too much. I've always had the problem of warming to the "newer" kids. Liz, Mandy, Trent, Alex, Jared, etc., etc. I could never get used to their characters and voices. Usually, episodes with them in it tend to be my lesser favorite ones. I don't think any of them match up to the "classic" kids. However, there are episodes when I can tolerate them enough to really enjoy the episode and this was one of them. I thought Trent did a pretty good job.

Except for the Kids' Radio episode, this season has been fantastic! I don't know if we could ever get back to "classic" Odyssey again. I mean they don't call it "classic" for nothing. However, I think we are heading in the right direction.

Review by alwaysHis324 (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

I really loved this episode.

I agree with the lot of you who say that Eugene is such an improvement to the show. I am astounded at how good each episode has been since his return. Hard to believe one character could make the difference, but it does. Eugene being back, its like we've gone back in time, back to the classic episodes. I love it.

The moral of this episode was wonderfully portrayed. I so enjoyed having Lester back. It will be nice to hear from him on occasion. Trent's character was a delight to hear from, and really loved the scene with him and Lester when Trent talks about his puppy dying. It was very sweetly written and performed. The ending, with Trent giving Lester an invisible puppy was awesome, especially Lester's line "I just played along."

Havine Eugene as a substitute... why oh why haven't they done that sooner? It was brilliant. Also brilliant to see Eugene learn a lesson. Brings out the humaness of his character, even Eugene can make mistakes. It was resolved nicely as well in the scene at the end where Eugene decides to listen to the students.

All around this episode was great. One that I will listen to again and again. This season has turned out wonderfully so far, I have yet to be dissapointed. Great job AIO team, please keep it up.

Oh... and am I the only one who gets a thrill out of hearing Chris say "and Will Ryan as Eugene"? I do believe thats my favorite part of every show.

Review by Kanimoto (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

This episode was a big let-down. It began well, and I was pleasantly surprised to hear of Eugene as a middle school teacher, but things went down from there. I can't put my finger on it...but something went wrong.

The plot with Lester and his dog was a bit sad, a bit corny. I suppose I think it's corny because a dog was involved. I don't think that this ep would have worked as well if Jared had replaced Trent. I mean, can anyone see Jared singing "B-I-N-G-O"? Jared seems more the type to analyze Lester from a distance, and tie him into some evil plot.

I miss Jared terribly, by the way...

The Eugene schoolteacher plot was terribly disappointing. I was glad to hear from Max, and I smiled a few times during the scenes, but there wasn't anything I heard that would make me want to listen to the ep again.

Maybe I'm being overcritical. Maybe, after going so long without hearing new Eugene eps, I'm going crazy because I still can't comprehend the fact that Eugene is back. At any rate, I'm not sure what's wrong with this ep. Something seemed to be missing. Was it because the scenes were too short? Was there too much focus on Lester? Maybe.

Review by Trinarius (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

Today's show didn't really hit the mark for me. Let me first start off with Eugene. I enjoy him being back, don't get me wrong on this one. However, he just didn't sound like his normal self. I suppose it was due to the fact that his vocabulary was just a little unusual (the use of "ya know," for instance). I know that within time the writers will get accustomed to his style of speech, but he just didn't sound right. Also, his getting so carried away teaching his class an in-depth study of the history of mathematics seemed a little overdone. Sure, I can imagine him getting a little carried away here and there, but for him to go completely over the edge was unrealistic. Remember, we're talking about Eugene here and not Harlow!

Secondly, we have Lester and his imaginary friend. It was good to hear from him again, but the story was just too silly to me. I know the moral of the story was being able to see things through others' eyes, but the way in which it was done was too childish. It wasn't a bad episode, and it had a good lesson, but I didn't seem to enjoy it that much.

Consensus: Thumbs Up (35/36 positive reviews)

Some of the best reviews of the season are saved for its penultimate episode—"For Better or for Worse, Part 1." Many reviewers agree that it had the feel of a "classic," bringing back nearly all of the main characters and featuring an event that fans have waited a decade for—the wedding of Eugene and Katrina!

Most loved seeing Tom and Bart banter, though a few felt their teasing of Eugene was a bit harsh. Everyone agreed that Connie was definitely in character and her conversations with Eugene were right on the mark. High marks were also given to production, music, and dialog.

Many didn't like Millie Shanks in the show, finding her overly controlling. Finally, Katrina remains a topic of debate, with many still feeling her "new" voice is hard to get used to. Others thought that she really "gelled" with the rest of the cast in this show, and didn't notice the change as much.

Review by SManBeyond, age 19

Ever since Eugene met Katrina, this is the episode of AIO that I have been waiting and longing to hear, and...I was not disappointed. In fact, I was VERY impressed.

First off, let me address the voice casting...Katrina's and Mrs. Shank's voices are different from how I remember them from the good old episodes of 1996, but that can't be helped.

Now as to the episode itself...

First off, the dialogue between all the characters was VERY well-done. They sounded like good old vintage Odyssey episodes. For instance, Eugene's dialogue with sounded JUST like back when they were arguing. And Connie's fuming after Mrs. Shanks made her like her.

Perhaps I come across as too impressed with the dialogue, but it's been a while since I heard an AIO episode that reminded me of how good the show was several years ago.

What else...Whit, Bernard and Tom were definitely the choices for bridegrooms. They were hilarious, and I can't wait to hear what Tom and Bernard get up to next episode.

Rathbone helping set up the wedding...brilliant touch.

Bernard's list of "10 things" revealing. :)

I also liked how Eugene questioned himself as to whether he was any less of a man and whether he was romantic. It seemed like something he would wonder about, and I enjoyed his kidnapping of sweet and hilarious.

As an old AIO fan, this episode was a real treat and delight for me to hear. I was skeptical at first, but they did a superb job. I can't wait to hear the next part.

Quotable quotes:

"What can I say, Eugene? When I make fun of you, I get on a roll!" -- Bernard

Bernard: "16 piece orchestra??"
Tom: "That's a lot of pieces, isn't it? Do they even make that many instruments?"

Eugene: "I am your vindicator in illustrious metallica apparel!"

Mrs. Shanks: "It never rains on a Shanks wedding!"
Connie: "No, it's a Meltsner wedding, and trust me, it WOULD rain on a Meltsner wedding."

Review by Alex, age 11

It was good! It was pretty funny.

Review by Elizabeth, age 13

WOW! I can't believe AIO finally made a Eugene and Katrina wedding episode! It's about time they did! This episode was funny and special.

I really did not like that neither Eugene or Katrina had the backbone to stand up to Mrs. Shanks. I mean, this is Eugene and Katrina's wedding not her's! Eugene can't stand up to his mother in law? He is the head of the family! And Katrina can't even tell her own mother the truth? Another thing; why does AIO make Tom look like a idiot one minute then a normal guy the next? It really bugged me how they made Tom look like such an idiot in this episode! I mean they have done this before! One minute Tom can't understand that Whit is not having Robert Lewis Stevenson over for a chat because he is dead; the other time they have him be a dramatic character stuck right in the middle of the Nova Com saga! Argh!

The episode was very humorous, though. I loved the scene where Eugene took Katrina on a "romantic" drive! It was also funny to have Bart Rathbone in the episode! And finally Dreams By Constance is getting some work!

Review by Jonathan S, age 19
Rating: (out of five)

When the information was released for this episode, I was interested in seeing how it would play out. For several reasons. First, it was written by Kathy Buchanan. I like her on the AIO team, and she has written some great, not to mention hilarious, episodes. However, I'm not a big fan of her "romantic episodes" (all you at the TH and ToO know full well how I feel about those). Second, I was curious how they were going to handle Katrina. Very few people on the team have written Katrina. Also, she's being played by a different actress (and I'm doing my best to get used to that). Third, they're already married; so what's going to happen? Renewing vows is a good idea, but I was curious as to what would happen nonetheless.

So, how did this episode measure up to my concerns?

Kathy Buchanan's writing impressed me. Like I said, I was concerned with her writing a "romantic" episode, but this time I wasn't disappointed. Most of the writing for the characters was terrific. Whit, Tom, Bernard, Eugene, Connie, and Bart (providing comic relief) were in their element. I know I've said it before, but I like hearing Tom and Bernard together; they play off each other so well. And Eugene is back to speaking the English langauge without anyone understanding (always good for a laugh). What it comes down to it, the episode wasn't too sappy or awkward in it's romance. Which is good for me, as I'm not interested in that.

Concerning Katrina......Actually, both Shanks annoyed me at times. First off, Katrina didn't sound herself in one scene, and I'm not talking about the voice. The scene in the park (I think it was the park) with Katrina, Connie, and Millie, the stubborn headstrong independent strong person I saw in "Wrapped Around Your Finger." Maybe this could be explained by a slight personality change because of the last several years and what they'd been through, but I still expected the strong character I've come to know. And Millie's acting seemed a little forced, but maybe it's just me. Of course, all these observations may be considered moot at the moment as I haven't heard part 2 yet. That and perhaps Millie is supposed to be annoying in part 1. Like I said, I need to hear part 2 (hence the problem with writing reviews for the first part in a 2 part episode and what not).

As for the content (aka number 3 on my list) it was also good. My friend's sister recently got married, and I was stressed out without even being involved with the planning! So I have a very vague idea on how nuts it can be. We get a good taste of that listening to Connie and Millie go at it.

In fact, my only significant complaint is the lack of spiritual content (which I hope is brought into the story in part2).

I just realized something; this is much more of an analyzation of the episode than a review, so I'm going to stop writing and review it next week. As for my rating; it was enjoyable, not too sappy, the characters sounded very much like themselves (with a few exceptions), they piqued my interest at the end of part 1 (good since it's a two parter) and I think that I'm even getting used to Audrey Wasilewski as Katrina.

Review by Julie, age 14

I thought it was hilarious! Connie was terrific. This ep had an old AIO feel. Especially since all the characters (excluding Katrina's mom) were old characters. I thought the ice sculpture idea was great. And Bart Rathbone with the lawnmower—definitely a Rathbone thing to do. The only person that I didn't like, was Millie, Katrina's mother. She was kind of annoying. Overall, this was a great ep. Thanks AIO!

Review by Nathan, age 16

It was great! The heated seat bit was so hilarious. And you gotta love Bart's resourcefulness. A lawnmower? He he. Of course I'm sure there are some who will write doom and gloom reviews about this ep. Some of these reviewers need to try to find the good things in Odyssey eps instead of pointing out the faults the writers and actors occasionaly do have. All in all, a classic ep that I will want to listen to again!

I can't wait till next week's ep!

Review by Bradford G, age 14

A good and funny episode. Can't wait to hear the conclusion.

Review by Amber, age 20

Loved having Katrina and Eugene back, but missed Katrina's old voice. Also, isn't she allergic to flowers? Or was it just carnations?

Review by Paul B

Eugene and Katrina are renewing their wedding vows. Connie is planing the wedding...or is she? Katrina's mom tries to take over. Tom, Whit, and Bernard help Eugene with music and suits and other stuff. Eugene kidnaps Katrina for a private getaway before the wedding. But the tire goes flat. Now they're stuck. What will happen in part 2? Have to wait and see.

Review by Josh, age 16

What can I say? This ep was good...not quite as good as last week's ep, but it was good.

Keep up the good work, AIO and God bless.

Review by EugeneLuver, age 14

I thought it was really cool. A good old AIO. Connie did a terrific job. The ice sculptor idea was so funny. The only thing that I didn't like was Eugene continually being made fun of. I don't think it was a very good example to the people listening. Also, Millie was kind of annoying. I can't wait for next week. Good job AIO!

Review by Gonkz

Wow. That is all I can say. Wow. This episode was truly classic Odyssey. Everyone was in character. It was funny, but not dumb. It expounded upon some old themes as well which was nice to see. This is why everyone was overjoyed that Eugene came back—because of episodes like this. I have no complaints and that is rare. We'll have to wait and see how good part two is. If it as good as part 1, I will be very impressed. Well done!

Review by Rick Monson, age 26

I think this is the episode that fans have been waiting to hear for a long time. A true wedding between Eugene and Katrina. I enjoyed the interaction between Tom and Bernard and the fact that Connie gets to use her wedding planning service "Dreams by Constance" to help out with Eugene and Katrina's wedding.

What I didn't care for was Mrs. Shanks being so controlling. She was a lot better character in the Novacom saga although, come to think of it, she was just as controlling before that.

I can't wait to see how the wedding does come off. I think Eugene needs to be himself instead of always taking everyones suggestions so literally. The flowers in the car was nice but not knowing how to change a tire (or know what a jack is) seemed a little far-fetched.

All in all, a great episode and continues to reintegrate Eugene back into Odyssey. Way to AIO.

Review by Beth1, age 17

No offense, but I'm really sad because the voice of Katrina has changed. It's just not the same. :-(

Review by Fan of AIO, age 35

I've been waiting along time for this momentous event! Praise God it is finally here! How in the world are Eugene and Katrina going to get back for their wedding? Only the writers know! I guess we will have to wait until Saturday! Now on to the big question...Who will have victory; Connie or Mrs. Shanks? I root for Bart Rathbone! Great episode, AIO!

Review by Fletcher (The Town Hall)

I'm not sure what to think of this episode. It was a mixed episode, with positive and negative points. First the positive points.

Eugene was hilarious, and his personality conflict was perfectly understandable. His "knight-in-shining armor" scenes were hilarious. Tom and Bernard working together was funny, too. I was also glad to see that, even though Connie was angry in this episode, she didn't suddenly redux in character development like she has in episodes like "Seeing Red." Her scene with Eugene talking about his wedding vow was perfect.

Now, the negative. I still can't really enjoy Audrey Wasilewski's potrayal of Katrina. She's a good actress, but she just doesn't embody what Katrina was when she was played by Pamela Hayden. She also doesn't have much chemistry with Will Ryan. Katrina and Eugene sounded like casual friends, not two people who are already married and about to renew their vows. Please, AIO producers, if its possible to bring Pamela Hayden back, do so! I would enjoy seeing Ms. Wasilewski in another role, but Katrina doesn't seem like Katrina without Pamela Hayden playing her.

I was also surprised that Katrina gave so easily into her mother's demands. I understand her wanting to please her since her father died, but letting her change everything about the wedding? It seemed out of character. Katrina wasn't nearly as much of a pushover in "Wrapped Around Your Finger." I was also a little disturbed by Tom and Bernard's malicious teasing of Eugene. Talk about bringing him down. I also wish Whit would have done more to stop them!

Overall, I'm not sure what I think of "For Better of For Worse, Part 1." I'll probably have a definite opinion by Part 2.

Review by Mandy Straussberg (The Town Hall)

Well, I absolutely loved it. There was, of course, the drawback of not having Pamela Hayden and, like Fletcher, I think Katrina's giving in to her mom was very much out of character. But as soon as Tom said, "Mercy" I fell in love with the episode. Which really had nothing to do with the episode. It's just 'cause the Jr. High pastor at our church says that all the time, so it's kind of a running joke with my friends. But even without that line, I still would've liked the episode a lot.

Review by Laurie (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

This episode was okay. Eugene was great. He has been since his return. I did not like Mrs. Shanks at all. She came across as very controlling and difficult. I though Connie's anger and fustration was justified where Mrs. Shanks was concerned. I actually liked Mrs. Shanks until this episode. Tom and Bernard's teasing of Eugene was very cruel and excessive. The writers could have handled that a lot better. Whit should have stepped in and stopped it. I was disappointed that neither Eugene or Katrina were able to stand up to Katrina's mother, it is supposed to be their wedding after all. Katrina's statement that her father always knew what to say sends the message that Mr. Shanks fought her battles for her and that Katrina cannot stand up for herself. It made her and Eugene's characters seem very weak.

Review by Broadcast (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

What are the chances...

It's rather hard to give a full review on half a show. It would be like stopping a movie part-way and telling people whether you enjoyed it or not. Odyssey episodes with several parts aren't really sequels, but more extended stories chopped up into pieces...with the sole purpose to annoy you for a week. Thank you Lord for Odyssey on CD.

Anyways, yes, my review. I was expecting this Kathy Buchanan Production to be highly hectic with several things happening at once while trying to extend the character's personalities to the point that we flinch when we hear them say something that doesn't seem to line up with their personality. Yeah, that would sum up the episode right there.

Again, I have to wait until next week to actually say, "Yes, I enjoy it. No doubt about it, this will sweep up every award at the End of Season Awards."

However, many things can be said. First off, my post-epiosde worries, ideas, and insights:

Their are many characters that can play one another, and that have been around for a while, and have also impacted the minds of children. I call them the "Favorite-Five"—Whit, Tom, Bernard, Jack and Jason. It's been nearly an eternity since we've heard them all in one episode. But, I'm sure each and every one of us feel a sence of loss when we take notice that one of these characters did not play a part in another person's life. Take Bernard, for example. I was sad that he wasn't around during Novacom (minus one episode), or Jack and Jason during Eugene's homecoming, or most of them during Connie's graduation and not to mention, her wedding in Washington DC!

Though, the realism is that it's not possible to have all of them jam-packed into one episode. There are too many. (Besides, Connie hogs up all the room... hehe...). And so, I was wondering which characters would they be chosing to take part in Eugene's wedding. Besides, every one of them had taken part with his relationship with Katrina:
Bernard and Tom were completely against the idea.
Jason nearly got them broken up
Jack did also, but offered a Christian viewpoint
Whit saw the beginning, and is apparently seeing the end. There was much that he missed out on in between.

So, curious about this, I listened to the preview to this episode, and it would seem that Whit, Bernard and Tom were taken from that list.

Which makes sence...Odyssey has a knack of having little spurts of characters. It would be too confusing to have Tom and Bernard in this season's three parter, and suddenly replace them with Jason and Jack for this 2-parter. You might as well keep a balanced cast for the same season so that the listeners don't get confused.

Speaking of which, this may well be the most episodes Bernard has ever been in in a season since the "Wish you were Here" Era.

Since I'm on a roll with characters, I have to say that Katrina's actress is sounding more and more like the Katrina of old. I don't get what it is, but, to be honest, I didn't notice anything different when I started listening to this episode. She sounded almost identical to her. And I thought to myself; for someone to sound THAT identical is pretty good. Oh sure, when she starts speaking a certain way she gets more nasally, and that's when it's obvious. But for the short sentences and quick, she's got it right on the nail.

I do believe we need to give her a chance. Sure, the chemistry between the two actors may seem a little different; but that could be inside our heads, too.

It's amusing, because people tend to doubt weither a character would do something they just did simply because they have a different voice. Otherwise, if it was the same actress, we'd accept anything she'd do. Would Katrina really have stood up to her mother? Well, technically, we haven't had enough background between the two characters to say either yes or no.

Speaking of the mother; I didn't really enjoy her. Which is why I say thank-goodness that the show wasn't just about her and Connie competing. It would've made for a very bad episode. Too bad, Armitage Shanks isn't still alive, he couldv'e slipped into her lines and made a much better delivery.

And the final point on character would be Bart Rathbone's presence. I sincerely hope that he has a bigger part in next week's episode. Just because Tom is in the episode and he plays Bart Rathbone, doesn't mean Bart has to automatically be around. Still, he made a very funny sidekick for Mrs. Shanks. But, I'd like to see his involvement rise.

Probably my favorite parts of this episode would be the Bachelor's Party. It was long, but filled with some of the most unique conversations in Odyssey history. I also enjoyed the fact that we got to hear about these character's past weddings and how Eugene took their ideas and applied it to his own.

In the end, the episode is left in an interesting predicament. The chances of all of this happening is almost absurd, but succeeds in good radio. Hopefully we get a nice climax during the second part, with a little more heart. Someone needs to have a one on one—heart to heart talk...but other than those points, it was a pretty good first parter.

Someday I hope someone gets a normal wedding.

Review by Boa (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

I thought Kathy did a great job at writing the characters, especially Eugene. I do agree, however that Katrina should have stood up to her mother.

Broadcast, I completely agree with you about the new Katrina. When she has those short sentences she's dead on. Her voice is so close, i'm not distracted at all.

I wonder who Katrina will pick to walk her down the aisle since her dad isn't there? I think that would be a good emotional moment. You know, something like "Oh Eugene, I miss Daddy so much" as she has a little cry. She still must hurt over it.

I thought the bachelor party was great! I've really enjoyed this season so far. I can't wait for the album!

Review by Trinarius (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

Everything about today's show was top notch, and I can tell that a lot of hard work went into developing this episode. I applaud Kathy Buchanan and the entire AIO team for a job well done!

Let me first start off with the issue of Katrina. I'm sure we all know that change is difficult, and to have a character that was on the show for such a long time be replaced with a different actor is hard to accept. I must admit, I really didn't like the voice of the new actor when I first heard her, and just couldn't believe that Pamela Hayden had been replaced. I mean, what was this world coming to?!? But after listening to today's show, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised to hear her play the part of Katrina rather well. Granted, no one can ever replace Pamela Hayden's voice or the unique chemistry that she shared with Eugene, but I think Audrey Wasilewski really did give a fine performance nonetheless. I don't know if Pamela Hayden will ever come back to AIO, but I think it's only fair to give Ms. Wasilewski a chance.

OK, now for the story itself. I thought that the storyline was extremely well-executed. I was very impressed at how many scenarios were going on throughout the show. Most of the time we get only one or two situations at the most, so to hear more of a variety was a nice change. This not only makes the episode more enjoyable to listen to repeatedly (I'm sure I've listened to this show more than four times already), but it also boosts the quality as well. All of the actors in today's show really did a great job, even Whit! Paul Herlinger finally added some enthusiasm to his character instead of the dry monontony we've come to expect. Bernard and Tom were hilarious together, and I really enjoyed the part of them at the groom party giving poor Eugene a hard time. Speaking of Eugene, I think it's finally beginning to sink in that he's really back! I don't know what's in store for him as AIO moves along, but all I can say is that he has given the show a dimension that was missing for a long time.

The music, as usual, was outstanding. I don't know how the AIO sound team does it, but I am always amazed at the musical gifts with which these individuals have been blessed! I especially like the way they mixed the wedding march in...way cool.

Before the season with Eugene started, I was very critical of the direction that AIO was going, and it seemed like AIO would continue to head in a downhill direction. However, this season, including today's show, has shown that AIO has most definitely improved for the better. It's classic AIO at its best!

Comments by Gandalf (The Town Hall)

I'll wait till next week before giving my full review but I have two comments I wanted to make now.

First, to say Katrina was "out of character" in this episode is probably correct. However, most brides are. My father is a pastor and I've been to many, many, many weddings and at almost everyone of them, the bride, groom, and families act completely different than in real life. Also, a lot has changed for Katrina. She may have been forceful in "Wrapped Around Your Finger" but remember that she learned her lesson in that episode, which is that people are more important than things (or events). Also, her father has died, which does tend to change the way people respond to their mothers (or visa versa if their mother has died). One of the best points, and a very accurate one, of this episode is that weddings are more trouble than they are worth. They simply stir up discord and competition. Primary on my list of questions to ask a young lady before considering her for marriage is "Are you willing to elope?" if she says no she's out. Just kidding, but I refuse to have a big wedding. Anyway, so I don't think Katrina was unbelievable. Yes, she may not have responded in the same way should would have in previous episodes, but it was certainly understandable and believable the way she acted.

Secondly, I forgot that Katrina was being played by a different actress. I didn't notice at all to be honest, and I think Audrey will do wonderfully in the future. I just want to say that I personally think people should stop saying that AIO should bring Pamela Haden back. It's simply not possible. That's like asking them to bring Hal Smith back when Paul Herlinger replaced him. We can miss her, but she isn't coming back. Accept it and move one.

Review by Elrohir (The Town Hall)

I liked this episode, for all the same reasons everyone else did.

Also, I completely forgot that Katrina has a different VA. With that in mind, I think she's doing a very good job.

Review by Londoner (The Town Hall)

I like it but I miss Pam. Tom and Bernard were funny but a bit harsh. Eugene was great. Katrina was weird.

The best bit was Connie and Mrs Shanks!

Review by Kanimoto (The Town Hall)
Rating: (out of five)

This ep was disappointingly average. I have no complaints about Katrina's new voice, but Tom and Bernard...they really bothered me...

Review by J-man (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I liked this episode except for one thing. Mille annoys me to death! I can't stand her voice, and everything she does annoys me. Eugene's drive was hilarious, and Connie (constance) is quite funny. All in all, I liked it.

Review by mdb17 (Town of Odyssey)

It was a pretty good episode

Review by Christian Cowgirl (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

Eugene and Katrina didn't seen natural, when they were dating they seemed like better friends then now. Eugene should know by now that Katrina loves him the way he is and the banter shouldn't have gotten to him.

Review by AIOfan11 (Town of Odyssey)

Wow! That was a hanger for sure. I have mixed thoughts like many.

It was very wasn't very good. I really like the fued between Millie, and Connie. That is very funny.

But, Eugene in a convertible? Wow. That just doesn't seem right! I am not complaining, I am just saying that sounds very funny!

Review by DrWatson (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

Since I haven't heard the voice of the old Katrina in quite some time, I am quite at ease with the new actress. I think she does a marvelous job and still has Katrinaness about her.

Another thing I liked about the episode was AIO's renewed reliance on Tom and Bernard as the comedy team. They were very funny—especially trying to book the 16-piece orchestra!

Review by Flyah (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

This was the best episode of the season by far. Tom, Whit, Bernard and Eugene together again evoked memories of "Flash Flood." The writing was great—the jokes hilarious (and true to character—Tom and Bernard picking on YOU-gene (as Tom would say)) and Connie's frustration was believable.

For those commenting on Katrina's new voice...I too at first was uncomfortable with it, but the chemistry is developing. Katrina and Eugene's dialogue in the car was clever and caused you to forget it wasn't the former actress.

C'mon, if you can accept and get used to a new Whit (the central AIO figure) you certainly can accept a new Katrina - who up to that time had only apeared in 20-25 episodes!

Seriously—I give the episode high marks, great job.

Review by Laura Ingalls (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I also do not like Katrina's new voice.

But other than that, it was a great episode!! I love Connie and Eugene's interaction, Tom and Bernard, and Bart being his normal self.

I look forward to next week!

Review by Bandit Squirrel (Town of Odyssey)

I thought the episode was definately believable. My one objection is Katrina's new voice. I kept forgetting that that was Katrina. Other than that, I think the episode was excellent.

Review by Me (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

The episode was very enjoyable. I once again felt as if I was listening to a classic episode. Once again, I credit this to excellent writing, and the character of Eugene. Another thing that I noticed was that Bernard's humor seemed much less contrived than it has in past episodes. It was more natural, less obtrusive, and more fitting with his character. Eugene's poor execution of the kidnapping plan was classic, showing all we love about Eugene. I also liked the reference to Naturally I Assumed ("virtually seven AM"). It was also good to see that Connie still has Connie-like responses in various situations, getting angry, and trying to outdo the competition. I gave this ep 4 stars, merely because I feel that 5 is reserved for those truly exceptional episodes like "The Time Has Come." I really enjoyed these episodes, and am really excited about the trends we have been seeing this season.

As for Katrina's new voice, we have already discussed this at length, and Nathan knows how we feel. For those of us who don't like it, myself included, there is nothing that can be done about it for the present. The team is doing the best they can. I think that we should stop griping about it, and move on.

Review by Omega (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

It's great to have Eugene back isn't it? :-)

I liked this week's show except it was kinda odd having Tom Riley and Bernard Walton goofing off together.

It was inevitable that Eugene and Katrina get stranded out in the middle of nowhere and miss their wedding. And it was really obvious that Eugene was going to be a real bonehead and try the whole convertible with the flowers in the back thing and that he would try to be a knight in shining armor. Eugene always seems to try things that other people did without considering that they may not work for him. I wonder what kind of disasters can happen in the next show. Maybe a minor fire and maybe a few more changes to the wedding.

Review by Bearliz (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I will comment...late, as usual.

I thought it was a pretty good episode, Connie and Millie's feud is quite humorous. As are Tom and Bernard and their struggles over the music! Eugene, well...he's Eugene!

As for the new Katrina...yes, people say we should just accept her, but I can't bring myself to realize that it is Katrina. Her voice is so different, I wasn't sure who was talking at first, when she came back. The "new" Whit and the "old" Whit's voices are so much closer sounding than this Katrina and the old one.

Consensus: Thumbs Up (18/21 positive reviews)

The season finale of Odyssey (featuring the very, very long-awaited wedding of Eugene and Katrina) is getting positive reviews, though not quite as positive as part one.

Almost all agreed that they enjoyed the scenes with Eugene and Katrina and liked how the show resolved. The humor was well-done. Most felt that the episodes was funny without being "dumb."

Less universally liked was Agnes Riley. While some enjoyed how she played into the story and ended up "turning" Mille, others felt she was unnecessary and distracting.

Review by Julie, age 14

I thought it was okay. Not as good as the first ep. I thought it was weird how they stuck Agnes in.

There were some very funny scenes, such as the swan eating the cake and throwing up in the fountain. The magician and juggler were terrific ideas.

Eugene finally rescued Katrina! How sweet. Overall I thought this was a great ep. Not quite as good as the first one, but pretty good. Good job AIO!

Review by Jonathan S, age 19
Rating: (out of five)

First off, computers are good things. I pulled an all-nighter on Friday, and missed it when it aired.

I expected chaos when this episode started, and it certainly delivered. But after a while I was wondering when things would stop being nuts and people would start acting, well, um, sensibly. Actually, about half way through I was kinda getting tired of it, to be honest, and was quite relieved when that happened at the end of the episode. Don't get me wrong, I like funny action, but it seemed silly to me. Perhaps my opinion will change as this episode stands the test of time. But I really did like it when things calmed down. Actually, I would have liked it had this happened half way through, but I'm being picky now.

Katrina. I apologize for bringing it up, but hey, I probably will for every episode that she is in for a while. But I will say I am liking Audrey's performance more and more. I, of course, would like it if Pam Hayden would return, but if she doesn't I'll be ok.

The biggest relief was that the episode was not sappy. Romance has its place, but I don't like the, um, romancy stuff.

In fact, my only real complaint was lack of spritual content. I believe (assuming I remember correctly) that I listed that as one of the things I hoped would come into play in this episode.

I liked the first part better, and can't remember what I rated it, so I'll give this episode 3 stars out of 5.

Review by Bradford G, age 14
Rating: (out of five)

A great season finale to a great season! Even though we don't end the season with a mystery like with last season finale with Whit in the hidden room, it's a calm, funny one but also another good one. I love it when Bernard and Tom are together. It's hilarious.

I thought that the scene with Agnes was very well done. And I also thought it was great how Whit performed the wedding service for Eugene & Katrina. I find this a great season, mostly because Eugene is back, and because of that I can't wait till next season!

Review by Nathan, age 16
Rating: (out of five)

Great, but kinda odd. What did Tom and Agnes have to do with anything? It's like they had to use up time to make it a 20 minute ep.

Review by chexfan2000 (Town of Odyssey)

Pretty darn good. Like usual, there were lots of mishaps and mayhem, to the point of being a bit unbelievable, but it was Odyssey. Welcome back, Odyssey, where have you been for the past few years?

Review by J-man (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I'm sorry to say that I didn't like this episode. I'm trying not to be overly critical, but this just wasn't a good episode IMHO. Why does everything always go wrong? Can't they have an episode where everything just goes fine? Does everyone else like it when everything goes wrong? Anyway, thre was one part that I did sorta like. The part where Eugene leaves to go up to the Kids' radio tower and when he comes back I sorta liked. I also would have liked to hear the song Eugene made up. Oh well. Sorry to sound so pessimistic but that's how I feel about this episode.

Review by Laurie (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I think it was a total waste. No one actually got married. Eugene was great as always. I thought that the minister setting up the sound system during a thunderstorm sent a very dangerous message. It's not surprising that he landed in the emergency room. Mrs. Shanks was much improved over last week. I thought the way she handled Agnes was very nice, even though it detracted from Eugene and Katrina. It was supposed to be their wedding after all.

Review by Chandler (Town of Odyssey)

Very slapstick. Many laughs throughout the show.

Review by Bmuntz (Town of Odyssey)

Very good ep. It was funny and everything worked out. The new Katrina is growing on me, but I still want Pamela back.

Review by Bearliz (Town of Odyssey)

It was an okay show, but it's not one I'll listen to ten times in a row. It was a little predictable, and I thought it dragged in some places. And WHY was Whit in Kids' Radio just as Eugene sent the message? I did like having Agnes back, even though it was, as I said, predictable of what was going to happen.

Connie and Ms. Shanks getting along at the end was good though—that kind of redeemed the show for me. But Katrina...I can't tell if she wants to go along with her mom or not.

Bernard was funny, with his struggles over candles catching things on fire...oh dear! The whole swan bit was a little over-used I thought.

But all in all, this had a kind of old Odyssey feel to it.

Review by Broadcast (Town of Odyssey)

Note to myself; Remind me to listen to any two-parters in one sitting.

I decided after listening to the 2nd parter to listen to both parts one after the other. I believe most of us should do this, too. Because, the second parter really does cover and relate to the first part, as much as it contraried to my first belief.

I'd like to say this here and now that I will be glad to have the Wedding Episode part of my Adventure in Odyssey collection.

I mean, it wasn't completely, wonderful and utterly superb...however, any two parter that features an entire cast of old characters is okay by me.

You had fun and excitement...a bit of humour here and there. And sure, I'm was like, ''Hello...Agnes, now, um, goodbye.''

To be honest, some of it was kinda fast-paced. The thing between Agnes and Tom could've been developed so much more. It felt as a a last minute writer's idea. ''Oh, yeah, how about if I just stick Agnes in there to waste a bit of time.'' Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the fact that she was stary-eyed about the wedding, and that it brought her back to the past...but, I don't know...I'm going to have to give my opinion after it passes the test of time. (I love that expression, BTW)

Bart continued his typical, ''I'm in this episode because Walker Edminston has the miracoulous ability to make two voices.'' That isn't to say that I wished that he wouldn't have been in this episode; I only mean to say that he really could've been used in a different way.

A few complaints; Eugene and Katrina trapped in the mountains was cleared up way to fast. I felt it was absurb that Whit just 'happened' to be in the Kyds Radio Room. They could've drawn-out that scene for much longer, expecially when the rains came. I was hoping for this miserable scene. Also, I wouldv'e liked that we heard Whit trying to decode the Morse Code signal.

The fire was a good addition. I enjoyed the fact that Bernard did it too.

I don't have much to say about this episode. Most of my comments were mentioned in the first parter. This episode was GOOD Period. Theirs no point analyzing it. And so I will stop there.

Good job Adventures in Odyssey. And Congratulations on a memorable season.

Welcome Home, Eugene.

Review by Catspaw (Town of Odyssey)

I enjoyed this episode! It was fun, and it was cool when Millie Shanks finally realized the way that she was pushing Katrina through with Agnes. I thought that part was nice, and it was funny that Bernard was the "pastor" for their "wedding." It was nice to have Connie and Millie get along at the end. I was so reassured to hear that Millie picked out the perfect butter pats pattern.

I wonder if Kathy Buchanan included a few disasters and experiences from her own wedding, or if it was more like the stuff of nightmares that only come true for Eugene and Katrina? They do seem to have a lot of problems, but now that they've been married twice, perhaps their really bad days are at an end. I can't wait until the fall seson!

During the first ep, I noticed that it wasn't Pamela Hayden as Katrina mainly during the part where Bart was introduced, because I thought that it was probably written with Pamela Hayden in mind (as Doris Rathbone). During this second half, I didn't even think about it being a different actress. I've accepted this much sooner than I thought that I would, so that is definitely a credit to Audrey Wasaluski!

Review by gimp80995 (Town of Odyssey)

I thought it was cute. Perhaps a bit too predictable, but cute. I expected Millie to really explode at Agnes for wearing her dress and thinking it was her wedding. It was nice the way she played along and even let Agnes and Tom get married (again) instead of trying to make Agnes snap back into reality.

Also a bit predictable that Whit would just happen to be in Kids' Radio when Eugene sent his transmission. But I guess some things have to be predictable. I recall the first time I listened to "The Boy Who Cried Destructo" when Eugene was coming up with a way to rescue Harlow and Whit. For only listening for a few short weeks it was really predicable that he'd use the sleeping potion. But still cool, so predictable isn't always bad.

In fact sometimes writers will do shows that are so predicatble it can be almost boring for a while simply so they can do a show where it appears to be predicable then things go completely different than the listeners expect. Keeps you guessing that way.

Review by Me (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

Let me just start by saying that the episode was good. Now for some detail. The Eugene and Katrina scenes were classic. They put me right back in the old days. They were well written, and fit the characters perfectly.

I was sitting there listening to the ep and thinking it was pretty good even if the disasters seemed a bit prolonged and like the "Worst Day Ever." Then Eugene mentioned that the Kids' Radio tower was on top of Forrest Mountain. My heart stopped. I could be wrong, but I thought the tower was in Gower's field. From then on, I was in fear. That is, until, Eugene came back down the mountain, and they arrived at the church building. From then on, the episode embodied everything I love about Odyssey. The transformation of Millie was wonderful, the vows, the song, everything was great.

Overall, the episode, for the most part, was not what I wanted for something that we have been waiting for for at least eight years. Don't get me wrong, it was a good episode, and I enjoyed it. There was just something about the string of mishaps that got on my nerves after a while. I am now listening to it for the second time, and I'm liking the "bad" parts better this time around. I'll warm up to it with a few more repetitions. After all, we finally get the marriage of Eugene and Katrina! That alone is worth ignoring any problems I may have with the episode.

Review by Nick (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I liked the way Eugene handled himself in it with the romantic get away—usually Katrina has her way and dosen't give in to Eugene.

Review by Joni_Slade (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I just listened to both parts at once, as I didn't want to wait a week in between.

I loved it. It was everything I've always hoped the Eugene-and-Katrina wedding episode would be. (And I have anticipated this episode for a looong time.)

Lots of funny lines, but for some reason something that struck me as particularly amusing (and appropriate for the character) was the way Millie kept calling Connie "Constance".

I grew to like Katrina's new actress better here. Hearing her voice wasn't as distracting as it was earlier.

Review by Kanimoto (Town of Odyssey)
Rating: (out of five)

I was pleasantly surprised by this ep. It reminded me strongly of the old episodes, in which everyone's plans went awry, but the end result was still better than expected.

Katrina's new voice sounded almost perfect, and the scenes with Agnes were especially touching. Wooton as an organist brought on a few chuckles. And, as usual, Will Ryan did a great job.

I only wish that something could have been done to fit in the others (Jack, Jason, etc)...but then again, too many characters might have ruined the ep.

Review by Arwen (Town of Odyssey)

I thought it was pretty good. I still miss Pam Hayden, and that's because she's ALWAYS been Katrina. I still want Pam Hayden back, but I can live with Audrey until then (if it happens). She's fine as a sub.

Review by Mandy Straussberg (Town of Odyssey)

In general, I liked the episode.

I think part of the reason I haven't been happy with the new voice of Katrina is because she's also being written differently. She seemed a whole lot less intelligent in this episode than she has in past seasons. The whole "can you say that in English" or whatever... (it's been three busy days since I heard it) really didn't sound like her to me. I kind of feel like she's been dumbed down. I did think Audrey Wasilewski did a superb job of acting, though.

Review by Shadowpaw (The Soda Fountain)
Rating: (out of five)

Click here to see the full review.

Eleven years ago, in "Truth, Trivia & 'Trina", we were introduced to Katrina Shanks as a potential love interest for Eugene Meltsner. Their troubled romance was forever on the cusp of reaching a satisfying climax, but listeners were endlessly teased as our heroes met obstacle after obstacle that they needed to overcome. Ironically it wasn't until the couple faced their biggest hurdle, with both actors no longer working on the series, that the lovable characters finally tied the knot in a way that left many fans with a disappointing taste in their mouths. I was one of these fans and longed for the day in which my favorite couple could be given a proper wedding. Thankfully this episode was written to satisfy those discontent fans and provide a ceremony that could live up to eleven years of hype. The show was nice, but ultimately fell short of such lofty expectations.

However, considering how high those expectations were, perhaps it's not that big of a surprise. Growing up with Eugene and Katrina, I've always envisioned their wedding to be this spectacular, epic event to make up for the years of being led on by the writers. How many times did we feel they were close to being truly happy when a new wrinkle would rip the two apart? Perhaps it is only fitting that "For Better or For Worse" mirrors the same troubled path the two have been on since day one: a glimmer of hope that ultimately leads to disappointment. The first part of this two-parter reflected the former while the second part appeared as the latter. In the end, there was so much to like about these shows but also so much to hate.

Surprisingly, Audrey Wasilewski as Katrina was not one of the things I hated. The small sample we heard from her in "A Most Surprising Answer" made me long for Pamela Hayden's voice, but aside from making a mental note, I was never distracted by her presence in either of the two episodes that make up "For Better or For Worse I & II". She was kind, funny, slightly nerdy and had nice chemistry with Will Ryan. I may not like that it's a different actress but I do think I'm going to be able to accept her as an alternative. It's not like Katrina was switched in the middle of a season... she was switched years after we last heard from her. To go back to Pamela Hayden now, after Audrey has been involved with two of the biggest Katrina episodes, would make these episodes seem silly and awkward. In comparison to Whit, where it was clearly Hal Smith's performance that made him into a man we love so dearly, I feel it is the character not the actress who makes Katrina popular with fans. I think, given time, most fans will be able to suppress the distractions associated with it being a new actress and embrace the character again.

Besides, having Eugene around makes everything that much better! And he was great again in this show, which I imagine will be the norm in nearly every episode from this point forward. Though I did find it awkward in part one when he referred to Whit, Bernard, and Tom as exactly that: Whit, Bernard, and Tom. Since when was he on a first name basis with anyone in town? And why were Bernard and Tom so mean to him at the bachelor party? It certainly reminded me of the good old days when the two would gang up on him, but the difference was Whit was around to discourage it. Instead, Whit is making excuses for their comments on the basis that it's "custom." I did think the scene was quite humorous though and hearing the four together in the same room was a treat as usual. However, where were Jack and Jason? Both characters have played crucial roles in Eugene and Katrina's relationship and to have them missing seemed like a fairly major oversight. Would they not be in attendance at such a close friend's bachelor party? In their place, we get Millie Shanks and Agnes Riley: my primary reasons for disliking part-two and my overall disappointment of the two shows as a whole.

Their storyline made me feel incredibly uncomfortable and question why was it even necessary. The focus of the two episodes should have been on Eugene and Katrina, along with their wedding, not fifth string characters who have only a few episodes to their name. The bizarre plot of Agnes, who abruptly appears, goes missing, puts on Millie's gown, thinks Millie is her mother, and then gets married left me completely baffled. It was such a huge focus of the show and (at least for me) stole far too much of Eugene and Katrina's thunder. Looking at part one on it's own, there was so much potential for the strongest season finale in years. But the build-up to something great was ruined by this silly subplot as it distracted, befuddled, and ultimately annoyed fans who have been waiting a decade for this day. The idea that someone else gets married in Eugene and Katrina's place might sound funny on paper (well slightly), but considering Agnes' mental condition, the humor lost out to an awkward silence during her scenes.

It would have also been nice to hear Eugene's distress call over Kids' Radio or get more information on the fire and how/why it started. Both scenes would have been interesting and memorable (Whit's astonisment that he hears morse code coming over the radio and Tom/Bernard frantically trying to put out a fire that they started) but these moments were likely sacrificed to squeeze in some of Agnes' airtime, which is incredibly unfortunate. I would continue my rant on how this random, pointless storyline ruined a wonderful opportunity for a remarkable episode but that won't change anything. I will say, however, that I'm hoping they lock Agnes up for good and never let her out to ruin an episode again!

Overall, this show didn't reach my expectations and suffered from a few glaring problems, but it still was a relatively strong episode to end an overall very strong season. There was also an interesting tidbit that I hope is explored in future shows: the travels that Eugene and Katrina went on. Considering how long they were gone and their apparent journeys across the globe, there must be a story to tell there. A flashback scene would be entertaining (and enlightening) and perhaps add some depth to their overall story arc. This is to say nothing of their potential to have children or deal with problems unique to new couples. There's a lot to be excited about in the seasons to come!

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