Lassie was a staple for millions of television viewers from the days of black and white sets in the fifties to the fancy color consoles of the seventies. Perhaps what I appreciated most about this nostalgic boy-and-his-dog adventure show was the rural life presented with such carefree access to fishing, camping, wildlife and outdoor recreation, activities I still appreciate today. They’re all elements in this early Lassie episode you are about to see entitled “The Bear” in which young Jeff, old Gramps, and trusty Lassie head out to the country for the weekend.
I have a dog, too – a rough collie mix named Rusty. More than a wonderful companion, Rusty provides laughter. He’ll never be as obedient as Lassie (“Rusty, come back in here!”), smart (“If you wouldn’t wander off, you wouldn’t need a leash”), energetic or outdoorsy (“There are other places to be than the couch, Rusty”), but he’s my Laddie.
During each step of this Lassie episode, enjoy Rusty’s colorful take on what he’d do in each situation.
Lassie helps Jeff dig the campfire ring.
Jeff shows Lassie how to set up camp.
In control whenever in nature, Lassie leads Jeff to a fishing stream.
“That trout sure tasted good. And you were so good, Lassie, not begging at all.”
“Gramps hurts his back, Lassie. Come quick!”
“I better get help. You stay right here with Gramps, Lassie.”
Lassie hears a bear and wakes Gramps from a nap.
The bear enters the camp. “Stay back, Lassie! Good dog – stay right there.”
“Lassie, you must be hurt, girl. Are you all right?”
(Oh, yeah, Timmy eventually replaced Jeff on the show after three seasons, and there were a million Jeff-Timmy parents throughout the years. I, however, hope to remain Rusty’s obedient master forever.)