Monday, September 7, 2020

Review of "Mr. McBeevee," episode 1 of season 3 of the Andy Griffith Show

 Review of

Mr. McBeevee, episode 1 of season 3 of the Andy Griffith Show

Five out of five stars

When to believe in a child, even when it seems impossible

 This is easily one of the best of the episodes of the Andy Griffith Show, because it deals with a real life dilemma. There are some comedic moments, but the thrust of the show is whether a parent should continue to believe in their child when what they are saying seems impossible.

 When wandering through the forest, Opie encounters a man that is stringing power lines. He walks in the trees, wears a silver hat and has many tools that jingles. He calls those tools his extra hands. The man’s name is McBeevee and he gives Opies some small gifts.

 When Opie reports this to Andy and Barney, they are skeptical so Andy and Opie go out to where McBeevee was working. Not finding him there because McBeevee had to leave to pick up a co-worker, Andy is faced with a tough parental decision. Whether to believe in Opie or to punish him for lying. Frustrated and uncertain, Andy goes back out to the forest and suddenly encounters McBeevee in one of the most moving moments of the entire series.

 This episode is also a look back at what was considered the social norm of child discipline at the time the show aired. Andy openly talks about giving Opie “a whipping” for lying. While that does not happen, the fact that it was casually mentioned on a wholesome family show demonstrates that such punishment was standard practice.

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