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View Poll Results: How the Tess Was Won
Excellent 4 10.26%
Good 16 41.03%
Average 15 38.46%
Fair 4 10.26%
Poor 0 0%
Voters: 39. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-18-2003, 12:05 PM   #1
alsplacebartender
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Default 104 How the Tess Was Won

How the Tess Was Won
August 5, 1956


The Texas Panhandle


This time, he's a Texas veterinarian face to face with pigs and horses and a beautiful woman, of course, named Tess. Why is he there? Maybe to get the guy he leaped into, Doc Young, together with the little lady.

However, she's a tomboy and challenges Sam to outrope, outdrink, and basically out-cowboy her in order to get her hand in marriage...and fifty thousand acres of her land.

And what is that guitar-playing boy's name anyway?


Written by: Deborah Arakelian
Directed by: Ivan Dixon


Rate and comment on this episode!
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Old 02-27-2003, 12:41 AM   #2
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Having young B.H. not knowing who to sing about was a thing to do! and as for the girl... again!! I just kept wanting the show to END!:yikes
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Old 03-09-2003, 09:54 PM   #3
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I was hoping it was over to.Not knowing what girl to sing about since the song wasn't written til 1957.
Yes I have to agree.
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Old 09-03-2003, 11:07 AM   #4
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I thought this episode was fair. It's definitely not one of my favorite episodes that deal with the past. I do, however, like anything in this one that has to do with the project or Al's personal life, etc.

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Old 10-05-2005, 10:03 PM   #5
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this was an ok episode. It features a kiss with history with Buddy Holly writing the lyrics to Peggy Sue. However, he originally wrote "Cindy Lou", not "Piggy Suey."
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Old 03-01-2006, 11:16 AM   #6
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This is the only episode where I've ever wanted to smack Sam upside the head. The part where Sam and Tess were talking while they were putting up the poles for the fence and Sam suggests that having children is something that women do better then men, I really, really, wanted to hit him.

The episode itself was... okay, I guess, but not one I'll watch over and over
again.
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Old 03-01-2006, 01:39 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyKayoss
The part where Sam and Tess were talking while they were putting up the poles for the fence and Sam suggests that having children is something that women do better then men, I really, really, wanted to hit him.
Why? There's absolutely nothing that can be faulted in his logic and I don't believe he said it to be condescending. Women are able to bear children, men can't. That's a simple biological fact of life. Add in to that that it's Sam's understanding that Tess' father wants her to marry in order to keep Riata in the family and it's a simple leap of logic to think that having children would be the next order of business.
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Old 03-01-2006, 02:33 PM   #8
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i agree, what's wrong with that, i mean it is true seeing as men can't even bare children at all, unless he's a seahorse, lol.

i thought this episode was harlarious, i loved it when Sam was remembering being pissed as a little kindergardner becasue his teacher that he crushed on married the principle, lol. poor Sam. but then there was his first grade teacher. hehe.

i also loved when he had tess read doc's dairy, and the end when Buddy Holly got his Peggy Sue lyrics.
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Old 03-02-2006, 10:54 AM   #9
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True, but still... That didn't exactly seem very sensitive, compared to the Sam we normally see. My reaction probably has a lot to do with my family life.

I did enjoy seeing Sam on horseback, though. Bet he hurt the next day...
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Old 03-11-2006, 09:39 PM   #10
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Kari Lizer sure is foxy
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Old 06-07-2006, 07:59 AM   #11
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Yeah not bad.Funny seeing Sam help out Buddy holly with his lyrics.
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Old 01-03-2007, 04:48 AM   #12
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Quote:
There's absolutely nothing that can be faulted in his logic and I don't believe he said it to be condescending. Women are able to bear children, men can't. That's a simple biological fact of life. Add in to that that it's Sam's understanding that Tess' father wants her to marry in order to keep Riata in the family and it's a simple leap of logic to think that having children would be the next order of business.
Have to agree here. If you take in to account Tess' boasting about "besting" a man, Sam is only pointing out the obvious.

How can you not love an episode where Sam asks the lady to dance?
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Old 06-26-2007, 05:54 AM   #13
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It was a nice episode. a bit silly but funny(Espicially when Sam asked Al to use the door for a change). i liked it.
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Old 08-15-2007, 01:25 PM   #14
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The Best Part: Hmm. An average episode indeed. Tess was three steps ahead of the liberation movement, for sure, so I guess the fact that she wanted to "prove" herself to everyone as a strong person and not just a "girl" was ok.

The Funniest Part: Irregardless of when Buddy wrote the song or what he first called it, this was a crack up... the look on Sam and Al's faces when they realized who he was finally... priceless!

The Worst Part: Sam's crack about women being better at having kids. Out of character, I thought.
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Old 08-15-2007, 11:55 PM   #15
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a nice light hearted episode, should have been more of the light hearted ones, loved the piggy sue part, made me laugh out loud.
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Old 08-16-2007, 02:42 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bexter
a nice light hearted episode, should have been more of the light hearted ones, loved the piggy sue part, made me laugh out loud.
Yeah I agree. And I love how they kept you wondering why Tess looked at Doc the way she did by not showing Sam's reflection until the end of the episode. I love how this show sometimes has that myterious twist that you are waiting to see. The crew on this show really know how to keep the people watching.

I also love how Tess was ahead of her time and wanted to be looked at the same way the rest of the ranchers were instead of like a woman, and how she wanted to be strong and do man's work. She just overall had a great charactor. I felt sorry for poor Doc because it seemed she was growing to like him and then she marries Wayne, and he's a good guy and all but Doc really loved her and he's a good person too. It's a shame because I was hoping she would see past his outer persona and see him for more. This is why I especially loved when Sam showed her Doc's diary which he had splattered his heart in. But I was glad that he got the be the best man that was nice of Wayne consitering that they did not get along at first.

I loved the spat Sam and Al have about Al getting miffed because Tina had a crush on Sam and wondering if he ever did anything with her hehe.

And don't even get me started on the Buddy thing, that was just nothing but a ball of fun. I especially loved the beginning when the poor kid was having no luck getting insperation for a song and sang these funny lyrics about the goat the was standing in front of him.
"Thad and me, Thad and me all he does is baa at me."
lol.

Great episode.
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Old 09-12-2008, 12:26 AM   #17
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Wow, he was there to save a pig... real fantastic story...

But I think this is the 2nd of the ties into real history - with the creation of the lyrics to Peggy Sue...
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Old 09-12-2008, 10:35 AM   #18
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Yes, I thought that was hilarious. Also, it was one of the many times that Sam had influence on modern history. I notice that the later seasons don't rely on that theme as much.
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Old 05-31-2009, 03:11 PM   #19
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I really enjoyed this episode, but maybe it's because I take it a bit personally. I'm a practical, non-girly, tomboy sort myself...so I identified with Tess and her need to be taken seriously. I love her line when Sam says she should wear a dress more often, and she fires back that it's kind of hard to run a ranch in a dress. She just wants to be who she is, and she won't change that in order to "catch" a man.

For that reason, I actually liked that she ended up with Wayne in the end. I feel bad for Doc, because I know he loved her too, but I'm glad that she got a cowboy who loved her for who she is and not because she had a farm. He was perfectly happy to let her run things her way, and he wasn't trying to turn her into a perfect little woman. Not that Doc would've tried to either, but I think her and Wayne were a better fit.

I do have to agree that Sam's "having babies" comment didn't sit well with me either. I just felt that he could've said something that was actually helpful. Of COURSE women are better at having babies...it's a biological fact that ONLY women can have babies. That's not saying anything. It would be like making the statement that men are better at producing sperm. Sam, Sam, Sam.

I thought the parts with Buddy Holly were funny. Maybe not historically accurate, but still amusing.

And I enjoyed seeing Marshall Teague, who I know as Ta'Lon from Babylon 5, and who I somehow recognized instantly even though I'd never seen him out of Narn makeup. Go figure!

(I'm going to always make comments on the guest stars...I'm one of those people who watches something and every two seconds says "who's that guy/girl? I know him/her from something!" IMDB is my best friend)
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Old 08-15-2009, 07:36 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmoniz View Post
Why? There's absolutely nothing that can be faulted in his logic and I don't believe he said it to be condescending. Women are able to bear children, men can't. That's a simple biological fact of life. Add in to that that it's Sam's understanding that Tess' father wants her to marry in order to keep Riata in the family and it's a simple leap of logic to think that having children would be the next order of business.
I agree,I dont see anything demeaning or sexist about Sams remark.
Its a fact,women are better at having children than men.
How many guys do you know who've given birth? (besides Arnold in that movie)
Men and women are different,we all have our strengths and weaknesses.
Sam didnt say it to diminish her as a person.
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Old 12-09-2011, 09:20 PM   #21
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How many guys do you know who've given birth? (besides Arnold in that movie)
Sam himself came damn close
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Old 10-24-2012, 06:33 PM   #22
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I do have to agree that Sam's "having babies" comment didn't sit well with me either. I just felt that he could've said something that was actually helpful. Of COURSE women are better at having babies...it's a biological fact that ONLY women can have babies. That's not saying anything. It would be like making the statement that men are better at producing sperm.
This is my take on it. It really is saying nothing, certainly nothing helpful. Oh well, even Sam had his bad moments.

Not a bad episode but definitely not a favorite, and not one I revisit too often.
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Old 08-24-2013, 06:20 AM   #23
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This is probably the only episode from any TV series that left me with every mixed feeling possible. It was weird, it was funny and also really dragging and boring at times. It was silly, it was important (the statment that all animals can see Al, for example), but also unimportant. The lyrics to Peggy Sue... wow... what? Buddy was there all the time, haha! And the title itself, well, it did not lie, right? It really was the story about how the Tess was won, ahaha! Probably the biggest kiss-with-history-based episode... but, again, you wouldn't really know.

One thing I didn't like about this season, particularly talking about these sort of episodes (this one and The Right Hand Of God, for example), was that most of the time it was intended to be too light-hearted. It was a family-oriented show and it was the end of the 80's, but sometimes it was all a bit over-the-top and ridiculous.

My rating: Average. Deborah Arakelian, writer of this episode (the only one she ever wrote in this series), will always be remembered for the art she created here. A groundbreaking episode because... well... it was really NOT.
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Old 06-04-2015, 02:46 AM   #24
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My big question rewatching this is - what did Sam actually do? He's obviously already heard the song Peggy Sue, because him and Al immediately knew the proper lyrics ... so it already existed in his timeline and didn't need fixing.

I'm struggling to see why Sam was there in the first place.

I didn't mind the episode, though. Although I didn't like it how Al said Doc was up against it ... I presume he meant Doc was super ugly? Not really in the spirit of Quantum Leap. And the having children comment above was weird.

It's interesting this early in the series, Al never really mentions the odds changing on Sam's mission, and sometimes they barely discuss the aim. And Al always seems to have a plot in his own life, which I don't like for some reason. Obviously some development yet to happen!
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Old 02-03-2016, 09:40 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by jg1981 View Post
My big question rewatching this is - what did Sam actually do? He's obviously already heard the song Peggy Sue, because him and Al immediately knew the proper lyrics ... so it already existed in his timeline and didn't need fixing.

I'm struggling to see why Sam was there in the first place.

I didn't mind the episode, though. Although I didn't like it how Al said Doc was up against it ... I presume he meant Doc was super ugly? Not really in the spirit of Quantum Leap. And the having children comment above was weird.

It's interesting this early in the series, Al never really mentions the odds changing on Sam's mission, and sometimes they barely discuss the aim. And Al always seems to have a plot in his own life, which I don't like for some reason. Obviously some development yet to happen!
I was just about to post the same thing and have the exact same thoughts! What makes this episode one of my favorites is that it's quirky but different. Usually it's "So-and-so is going to die in 3 days, now go and stop it." In here it really is about love (or song lyrics?) and shows that sometimes the mission isn't always clear. It's refreshing to see a "lighter side" episode every now and then, especially with the underlying arc of "What IS that kid's name?"

Now, regarding the Buddy Holly thing... I like this episode because of its quirkiness, but yes this ending is weird. I agree with the OP, Buddy Holly wrote the song just fine the first time around, and it's not one of those "the changed history is OUR real history" (as in Lee Harvey Oswald) because as the OP pointed out, Sam recognized the song.

Another thing I picked up on... "Peggy" came from "Piggy", but it was SAM, not Doc, who named the pig, so that can't be how Buddy came up with it.

And why DID Sam ride Widowmaker if he had no intention of "marrying" Tess? Sam should have leaped as soon as Tess showed up because the Doc and Tess didn't marry in the original history.

I also want to comment on the "up against it" comment as Sam looked in the mirror. Presumably he looked at Doc's reflection at some other point since his leap-in so this shouldn't have been a surprise. I agree with the OP it was an insinuation that Tess was "out of Doc's league" but apart from that I don't get it. And why is mirror image Doc wearing glasses while Sam wasn't? Maybe the feeling was that if Sam were wearing them it would "give away" something about Doc, but articles of clothing and eyewear would not leap forward with the leapee.
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