Warning: Major Spoiler Alert for Album 70!!!

I was really excited when I first heard the title of this episode: Christmas Bells. Yes! We’d be getting a Christmas episode in an album for the first time in ten years!

I did not expect the episode to be Wilson answering a calling, Zoe looking for help with school, and Jason telling the story of the writer of a Christmas carol I hadn’t even heard of. Needless to say, I was pretty disappointed that this episode had essentially nothing to with Christmas, especially since the order of the album was changed in order to accommodate this episode on Christmas week. Why? It had little to do with Christmas, and it probably wasn’t even Christmastime in Odyssey.

Ahem. That aside, I think this was a great historical episode! One of my favorites, in fact, which is surprising because I generally am not a fan of history episodes. I think the choice of Henry Longfellow was great because of all the things that happened in his life and how those events were reflected in his poetry and songs. The lesson learned from examining Longfellow’s life was powerful and the scenes chosen illustrated it extremely well, especially the last scene between Longfellow and his son. Interesting it was not mentioned in the episode that Longfellow wrote the famous poem “Paul Revere’s Ride”.

This episode was distinct from other historical ones because of two things: First, the singing of “I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day”. At first, I was pretty uncertain when Wilson sang the first verse, but as the episode moved on, I really enjoyed it. I think using the verses as transitions between scenes sounded great, especially since the verses corresponded to events happening in Longfellow’s life.

And now for the main element of this episode that set it apart and caught listeners completely off guard: “One of three will fall.”

Rewind.

Just over a minute into the episode, it is obvious that there is something different about it. Wilson comes into Triple J’s because he was ‘called’.

Okay. Similar things have happened before in Odyssey, and usually the reason for the calling is obvious and significant (Think “The Time Has Come”).

But here…what happens? Wilson obeys the calling, tells a story, sings a song, then offhandedly finds out that Zoe is part of a group that includes three: herself, Olivia, and Emily. This is significant to Wilson because he was also told that “one of three will fall”.

For what reason was Wilson made aware of this? It logically follows that Wilson must take some sort of action, which he concedes to do at the end of the episode. Does this mean that Wilson will make an appearance in Album 70’s last episode? I would be surprised, considering he hasn’t been a part of what’s been going on with the Rydell Saga…

Most agree that the one who falls is likely Emily Jones, who will probably be falling from her faith. So, does Christmas Bells make the list of Rydell Saga episodes? Some have said on the Soda Shop that this revelation at the end doesn’t fit with the rest of the episode. The obvious connection to the Rydell Saga makes this episode stand out – in a bad way, if you ask me. Longfellow’s story is somehow corrupted by the warning.

On the other hand, it does kind of make sense to include it in this episode since according to the actual order of the episodes in #70, Christmas Bells is immediately before Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off. I guess it makes sense, logically, to include Wilson’s insight in Christmas Bells since it would be hard to fit it in the next (especially if Wilson is not going to be in it), but should that have been done at the expense of the episode?

I’m going to have to wait and hear Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off before I make a decision. I know we’re all looking forward to it.