The Stillness Within

The Stillness Within

Air Date: March 14, 1971

Written by: Suzanne Clauser

Directed by: Michael Landon

Guest Stars: Jo Van Fleet (Ellen Dobbs), Harry Holcombe (Dr. Martin), Victor Sen Yung (Hop Sing)

Joe is blinded by an explosion of nitroglycerin. Joe’s prolonged blindness, along with the depression that sets in causes Ben to hire a teacher for the blind. Ben is quite upset to find out she is also blind. Miss Dobbs reassures Ben that she is more than capable to teach Joe how to deal with his blindness and live in the world around him. She then sets off on her mission with Joe, not telling him that she too is blind.

Trivia: This was Jo Van Fleet’s second and last appearance in the series. She played the role of the Stepmother in the 1965 television remake of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella, but was replaced by another (uncredited) actress when the cast album was recorded.

When Suzanne Clauser originally wrote this script, Miss Dobbs was to be a younger woman who Joe would fall in love with. When Michael Landon read the script, he changed her to an older character as he was tired of Joe falling in love with every woman that crossed his path.