ABC Afterschool Specials: Season 12, Episode 6

Backwards: The Riddle of Dyslexia (7 Mar. 1984)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Comedy | Drama
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.2/10 from 64 users  
Reviews: 7 user

13-year-old boy has problems reading, which his teachers attribute to laziness. It is later discovered that he has Dyslexia.


(as Alex Grashoff)


(teleplay), (story)
0Check in

Related Items

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Backwards: The Riddle of Dyslexia (07 Mar 1984)

Backwards: The Riddle of Dyslexia (07 Mar 1984) on IMDb 8.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of ABC Afterschool Specials.
« Previous Episode | 82 of 156 Episodes | Next Episode »


Episode credited cast:
Miss Tomas
Brian Ellsworth
Judy Farrell ...
Barbara Ellsworth
Robby Ellsworth (as Leaf Phoenix)
Stephanie Evans ...
Sharon Anderson
Charles Theodore Bates III
Daniel Davies
Bo Kaprall ...
Walter Ellsworth
Peter Moore
Shirley Venard ...
(as Shirley Venard-Diercks)
Jack Walsh
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:


13-year-old boy has problems reading, which his teachers attribute to laziness. It is later discovered that he has Dyslexia.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis





Release Date:

7 March 1984 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

a young actor who did a great job
3 September 2003 | by (Germany) – See all my reviews

All right I admit, I really loved those so-called "cheesy" after School specials that ABC made back in the late 70's and the early 80's. That should give you an idea of both how old I am and how out of whack I am. But there are a few of these specials that stick out in my mind. One was The Drug Knot, the one that David Toma was in, and the other was this one where young River Phoenix made one of his first appearances. I remember thinking to myself that this kid sure has a funny name. But I remember it particularly because he did such a dynamite acting job! I couldn't believe that a thirteen year old could act the way he did. I remember one scene in particular where the boy breaks down and cries in frustration because he can't read. It really tore my heart. River Phoenix was an amazing young actor who unfortunately became another Hollywood case of too much and too soon. Everyone was saying that he would become the next James Dean, but sadly, like the Elton John song says, "your candle burned out long before your legend ever did". Its a shame because he was so gifted and talented and you had to only wonder what might have been.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Adam Sandler Drug Dealer? Showmanrox
The Pinballs seas286
Psssssst... Hammerman's After You!!! OKCRay
Nazis? Ozymandias1
ABC AfterSchool and ABC Weekend Specials AnikaMarie
Old Woman Stood Up by Cruel Kids - Episode Title? implode-2
Discuss Backwards: The Riddle of Dyslexia (1984) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: