Michael Learned talked about the transformation of Olivia Walton throughout The Waltons.


It is quite natural for characters in a television series to evolve and develop over the course of several years, just like real people do. 

Olivia Walton, the matriarch of the Walton family, was not unaffected by such change. Michael Learned recently had a conversation with the Gannett News Service about the development of her character.

 She mentioned that the character has undergone a change and is now more actively involved. Learned stated, "During the initial two years, I spent a significant amount of time serving coffee and politely reminding children to go to bed." She has become more flexible, with a greater range of strengths and weaknesses, and a clearer perspective.

It is understandable that a character like Olivia Walton would undergo personal growth, mirroring the development of a real person, given that the character is inspired by the actual mother of Earl Hamner Jr., the creator of Walton. 

Hamner's mother had a slightly lighter demeanour compared to Olivia Walton in the early episodes. The Kokomo Tribune questioned Learned about his mother's personality. Hamner mentioned that she had a frequent laughter, which was also seen in her counterpart, Olivia Walton, as the series progressed.

However, it is crucial to recognise that although Walton is inspired by a real person, she remains a fictional character and should not be seen as a role model in every aspect. It is widely acknowledged that although Olivia Walton is beloved by many, it is not advisable for mothers to strive to be like her.

During an interview with the Richmond Times-Dispatch, she shared a moment that made her uncomfortable. A woman approached her and expressed her admiration, saying, "I aspire to be a great mother like Olivia." 

The Waltons portrayed a pleasant and idyllic reality, one that is enjoyable to observe but not entirely achievable. Learned remarked, "We all have our own ideals." This show is a clear affirmation of this. I find this to be quite appealing. 


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