|Index||3 reviews in total|
I am an unusually enthusiastic fan of this beloved baby boomer classic
Western Soap. Therefore, i don't want to give any hint of the plot
beyond this: Victoria takes her buggy (rather abruptly!) into the
near-deserted (and once booming) mining town of Strawberry - the place
where Heath was raised as a boy.
Victoria is seeking the truth about her deceased husband Tom's past.
The acting (particularly that of Jeanne Cooper, who is scarier than Stanwyck here!) is superb.
Beah Richards is really good as Hannah, the half-mad old African-American lady who knew the truth - somewhat.
As Heath's 'selfless' (yeah. right.) 'Aunt Martha', Jeanne Cooper gives a performance nearly worthy of an Emmy: she's fantastic in her delivery and her timing is perfection ("Shut up Matt. Shut up!!")...
Well worth catching for the acting alone: this is definitely a personal favorite of mine.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
In another episode that lingers on Heath's relationship with the
Barkleys, Victoria rides to the town of Strawberry to find out answers
to question she has about her dead husband Tom Barkley.
Upon arriving in Strawberry she meets a aging black lady named Hannah James that use to babysit for Heath's mother Rachel. It seems like Hannah is withholding information about Tom Barkley in fear of someone taking revenge on her.
The only other kin in the town is a uncle named Matt Simmons and his aunt Martha Simmons. Martha is a head-strong woman that only sees dollar signs when Victoria wants answers about Heath's past. Martha, not knowing the real story, tells Victoria a tale that they were the ones that took care of Heath during his early days. Martha also cites that she cared for Rachel (Heath's mom) in her final days of her life and feels like they are owed something for taking care of Heath.
Later Victoria learns from Hannah that Rachel's death may not have been from a reported accident but a murder. So the Simmons, lead by the evil Martha, plans to set up another so-called accident in which Victoria will be the victim.
But just in time Heath spoils the plan and will take Victoria back to the ranch. But Martha has one more scheme up her dress to get the money she feels like she needs to get away from her weak husband. Thus making the trip to the ranch a possible 'last-ride' for Heath and Victoria.
Jeanne Cooper give a great performance as the wicked Martha Simmons. And with the mild John Anderson playing Matt Simmons- it was a perfect combination of fire and water. Even though the story was slow to develop- by the end -the viewer is rewarded for his time in a good heartwarming show.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Unbelievably horrible episode. Totally laughable.
Third episode of the show, so I start watching this thing when Heath shows up, saying he is Tom Barkley's long lost illegitimate son. I'm just getting the swing of soap operas,so here is an old one. Let's see where this goes.
In this episode, Victoria rides off to Heath's hometown of Strawberry, to learn about Heath's mother and if her husband loved this other woman or it was just a fling.
Now Rachel was a friend of Heath's mother, whose name was Leah. Rachel was the one who was killed recently, thrown down a mine shaft.
Beah Richards also appears as another friend of the maid variety, Hannah.
But yea, it is all Jeanne Cooper's show here.
Unfortunately, I never quite grasped what they were after. Money, it turns out. I think when I first saw this episode near 25 years ago, I thought the assumption was, . . . . . there was a secret. But Mrs. Barkley was going to have to pay to learn it.
Everything just moved clumsily along. I guess the sudden addition of good friend Rachel was to give Martha (Cooper) something sinister real quick.
And now the same fate will befall YOU, Mrs. Barkley! The writing is atrocious. Cooper and Richards do what they can with it. Beah Richard's dialogue is almost just as bad.
Martha running into the street calling out to the hired gun to take out the Barkleys as they are leaving is truly hilarious.
So I guess if Victoria and Heath were killed, then Jarrod and Nick would come in with the law and Strawberry would be bustling once more? Or this would be Martha's true ticket out of town? As I said, I always thought Martha was stressing over benefitting from the secret, but there was no secret, nothing she knew anyway.
In the end, it is what I would call a heavily padded episode.
When Heath takes out the gunman, he and Victoria calmly get back in their carriage and leave. I guess they contacted the law later.
Today this is known as leaving the scene,tho I guess they had no other way to contact someone.
Still, the episodes conclusion (bearing in mind this is only the third episode) with some overhead view from Tom Barkley's statue as tho he was JFK or something gets even more hysterical.
I'm reminded of The Furies, with Stanwyck and I believe Walter Huston, and she couldn't quit referring to Huston (he was her father) as tho he was FDR.
I always thought Richards joined the show as the Barkley's maid, but oddly enough, that didn't take place.
It's just so laughable, your husband left her here with his illegitimate baby, . . . . . . now about that check? Later, ....okay, we'll take half what you previously offered.
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