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More musical adventures with TV's favorite rock 'n roll family! The family tries (unsuccessfully) to conserve energy. Laurie poses as Keith's date to make other girls jealous, but the plan backfires. Danny wants to impress a girl by telling her rabbi father that the Partridges are Jewish - and the whole family is invited to dinner. Shirley tries to hire a maid, but it's all in the family when her mother shows up to apply.
Danny Bonaduce was always The Partridge Family's not-so-secret weapon. His cheerful money-grubbing ways provided an antidote to the smug homilies and treacly heartwarmingness that afflicted so many sitcoms of the early 1970s. His prepubescent cynicism was never more needed than in The Partridge Family's fourth and final season, when recycled plots and forced gaiety began to seep in. The biggest red flag was, of course, the addition of an adorable precocious tot: Ricky Segall, a four-year-old neighbor who brought too many episodes to a screeching halt with his cloying children's songs. The rest of the cast had to sit and beam adoringly at this festering harbinger of a Partridge apocalypse. Fortunately, Segall was soon reduced to appearing at the tail end of episodes and the show's dependable virtues rallied: David Cassidy's teen idol charisma, Shirley Jones' improbably wholesome sex appeal, Susan Dey's feisty feminism, the goofy mix of bubblegum music and borscht belt comedy, and Bonaduce's froggy sarcasm. Odd patterns dominate the fashion trends, Jones wears maxi-dresses and some bizarre brightly-colored wimples--and everyone's hair has become startlingly ornate (Keith's puffy mullet is a force to be reckoned with). Guest stars include an abundance of future TV stars--like Pat Harrington (One Day at a Time), Robert Mulligan (Soap), and Cheryl Ladd (Charlie's Angels)--as well as movie stars old (Margaret Hamilton, The Wizard of Oz) and new (Jackie Earle Haley, a few years away from stardom with The Bad News Bears). So despite some signs of age and impending cancellation, the fourth season still holds many pleasures and should not be missed by fans. --Bret Fetzer
Great as usual, just too bad that there fewer episodes in this the final season than in the other three seasons (22 as opposed to 24 or 25. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Robert Conner