Premiered November 22nd, 1975
Jerry:This is the worst Thanksgiving I ever had.
Bob:I knew it was gonna be bad, but I didn't know it was gonna be this bad this early.
It's autumn in Chicago and Thanksgiving is approaching.
Psychologist Dr. Bob Hartley (Bob Newhart) and his wife Emily (Suzanne Pleshette) are planning to spend Thanksgiving with Emily's family in Seattle.
|Elliot Carlin stepping into Bob's office.|
|Bob wins a tiny turkey in a raffle.|
|Bob unsuccessfully attempts to flip a pancake.|
|Jerry in his W&M sweater, jug in hand.|
|The gang watches football. Carlin comments that this is the worst party he's ever been to.|
|Bob drunkenly attempts to order some takeout.|
J.A. Morris says:
It's hard to this episode justice. The plot of "Over The River And Through The Woods" is basically "Bob Hartley & friends get drunk on Thanksgiving," but there's more to it than that.
Jack Riley is absolutely brilliant here as Elliot Carlin . He stays in "deadpan" mode throughout the episode while everyone around him is howling drunk with laughter. Riley's delivery (or lack thereof!) is especially great when he tries to tell knock-knock jokes.
Bob and Emily are usually the level-headed characters surrounded by quirky oddballs. But this episode shows that after a few shots of alcohol, Dr. Hartley is just as goofy as Howard and Jerry. It shows that without Emily, Bob is adrift, and she's the real brains of the marriage.
Like most Thanksgiving episodes (including an earlier Thanksgiving episode of this series), food preparation comes into play. It often involves arguments over how to make the food, but in this case, no one knows how to cook a turkey. The most important "turkey" moment involves one of this episode's many knock-knock jokes, which I won't spoil.
At its heart, "Over The River And Through The Woods" is another Thanksgiving episode where lonely people find common ground with others and create a "family" of sorts for the holiday.
As an added "bonus," the characters wear 1975 fashions that haven't aged very well. The clothes increase the comedic value of this episode. Bob's leisure suit is especially ridiculous.
|Gotta love those plaid pants!|
This episode is available for viewing on dvd. You'll find it on The Bob Newhart Show:The Complete Fourth Season.
"Over The River And Through The Woods" is one of the best episodes of The Bob Newhart Show. It's also one of the greatest Thanksgiving episodes in the history of television. On a personal note, I quote this episode year-round. Highly recommended!
J.A. Morris' rating:
4 pumpkin pies!
This is a silly, funny episode of a great show.
|Jerry explains how bad the holidays were at the orphanage when he was a kid.|
|Male bonding over booze.|
I don't have as strong a liking for this episode as my co-blogger, but it is most definitely worth watching.
3 pumpkin pies.