"I Will Walk with You, Part I"

A review by Jenni:

So here's the deal...  First of all, I'm not super excited about watching this episode cause John's not in it.  Kinda just zaps my enthusiasm...  And then there's "the issue."  I haven't watched either part of the finale since 2003 because troubling news came out about the actor who played Zack.  I won't get into it but can only say that I can no longer watch anything he is in without feeling my blood start to boil.  This is why there aren't any images of him any where on JABB's site.  However, I'm also not going to let one person sink an entire show when the creativity and passion of so many people went into it.  Third, aspects of this plot really don't work for me.  But I have my chai and my bread pudding and I'm gonna look for positives!  So here I go...

What I love about this episode:
Carol Burnett's intro seems all the more true now...  "The road you walk may seem long but you do not walk alone."  For all its dark and horrible moments, the past year has really proven that to me.

Whatever else I may think about the plot here, I do love full circle things.  I love that TBAA ended where it began.  The bench, the snake, the field, the bus.

"Nobody knows better than an angel that there are no real good byes."  A Tess quote.  Except it makes me think of someone else entirely...

Well, I've had my disagreements with Tess but we do have this in common: I never could resist a little symbolism, either. 

Traveling handyman... right.  It was kinda fun how they camouflaged Zack.  The part where he's carrying the big wooden beam amused me, too.

I forgot that Ruth was in this.  Nice.  Except now I just see Maw-Maw from Raising Hope.  I like how realistic her depiction of Monica is.  ;-)

Aww, Sam. 

Well, my blood's not boiling.  That's good.  Although I suspect it says more about the fact that my emotions are too tied up in other people to care about this guy.

I thought it was nifty how Mayor Mike was a former Search and Rescue assignment of Monica's.

Nice to see Rafael, too.

"You remember the story of Easter?  Death came on Friday, life on Sunday, but there was a long, very hard day in between."  I love that quote from Monica.  I can't wait for Saturday to be over.  I will, of course.  But I'll be super happy when Sunday arrives.

I really like that Sophie reappears, too.  Kinda...  It goes both ways for me.  It's nice to see her, I mean.  Just unfortunate how her story played out.

I do think it's touching how Zack knew just how to get past Sophie's "security."  But I guess he would know...

Aww.  A kitty.

What I didn't love about this episode:
It's insane to me that Andrew's interview scene isn't shown.

The bus scenes are having a weird effect on me.  It's no one's fault.  But there it is.  A lot of sad stories on buses.  Happy ones, too, thankfully.

I'm sorry but this episode just really put a damper on the Wayne and Joey Christmas episodes for me.  Now I can't watch them without a sinking feeling of "Yay!  Oh but...  You have hope now but a really terrible thing is going to happen..."  "There, but for the Grace of God" has the same problem.  "Yay!  Sophie's going home... which will be hellish soon."

While the end result was touching... Zach taking all those items... the photos of the children in particular... is weird, IMO.  Nice that it turned out well but it left people freaking out for a while, I'm sure.

Lingering questions:
How common is it for people to go mute after trauma?  It seems to happen a lot in TV and movies but I've never heard or read an actual account of it.

Parts that made me feel swoony:
Well, at least we'll get a glimpse of Adam.  Still... I lit John's candle.  I need him to be part of this.

And I can already tell he's going to haunt this episode. 

It's kinda surprising...  Since I know Andrew's not going to be in this, I don't mind the clips.  This episode is really making me realize how much more of an Andrew fan I am than a TBAA fan...

Wish it was Andrew fixing that coffee maker... he can.

Seeing Patty Duke just makes me think of her scene with Andrew in "I Do."  I was so angry at her but my heart broke for her, too.  And he was so beautiful.

Yay, Adam!  I had no clue he worked with Monica when she was in Search and Rescue though I guess that makes sense as he knew her already by the time of her first caseworking gig.  Anyhow, just glad to see my second favorite angel since I can't see my real favorite...

Fantastic.  I just hallucinated that I saw Andrew in a scene.

Random thoughts:

Music: There's a country song playing at the Cafe.  Sophie plays what I'm guessing is either Chopin or Beethoven and sounds terribly familiar but can I name it?  No.  Ha, got it.  The latter's "Fur Elise."  Duh.  Why can I never remember that one?  It's clearer now why that tune makes me tear up.

Here Tess says Monica's choir stint was between Annunciations and Caseworking.  Not sure if that vegs with the other versions.

Factoid: Joey works in Dorinda's Cafe.

I wish I could separate the actor from the role better...  When a character does something bad, I don't hold it against the actor.  But when an actor does something bad... it tends to sully how I view the character.  Of course, since Zack is based on a Real Person, no actor can touch my view of Him.  But in the context of this episode... I know I should feel bad when Zack is attacked but I just don't.

Scenes Hallmark cut:
- Watched the DVD.  No clue.

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