Two Loves for Jenny
Original Air Date: October 27th, 1982
Did You Hear What Happened to Andrea?
Original Air Date: December 7th, 1983
The ABC Afterschool Special was a staple of my childhood. I remember many of them (with the “V.D” episode instilling the necessary amount of fear it most likely intended!), but there were so many episodes, a lot of what I remember is a medley of images from several installments. Luckily, a few of these episodes were released on DVD for mass consumption from a nostalgically inclined audience. I.E. ME! So Yays all around!
Two Loves of Jenny (aka Between Two Loves) features the gawky, but pretty and extremely likable Karlene Crockett (Dallas, Diary of a Teenage Hitchhiker) as Jenny, a new student in a new school in a new town. Jenny’s father has just died and her mom moves them from the farm to a bigger city so Jenny can play in an elite high school orchestra, run by stodgy Mr. Forbes (Robert Reed!). Turns out, Jenny is one mean violinist and is able to join immediately. She takes the last chair while uber gorgeous Doug (Lance Guest who was simply heaven sent in The Last Starfighter!) takes chair #1. They strike up a friendship that eventually leads to a blossoming romance. But Jenny’s abilities as a musician quickly move her up in the orchestra and eventually pit her against Doug for a much coveted scholarship. Doug really needs the funding for school and Jenny is only now just realizing how badly she wants to play the violin professionally. The relationship is tested when Jenny has to decide if music means more than Doug.
Now on the other hand, I have been quite aware of Lance Guest. I have loved him since I was 13 years old and his lanky build, curly locks and sweet presence made him the perfect first love for Jenny. And he was in Jaws 4 and Halloween 2, which is all kinds of awesome!
The second episode on the DVD is the infamous Did You Hear What Happened to Andrea? (aka Andrea’s Story: A Hitchhiking Tragedy) It’s infamous because it’s one of the episodes, besides the V.D. one, that I remember explicitly. Andrea is played by pretty Michele Greene (who has become a regular in the world of Lifetime movies) who along with her boyfriend David (Moosie Drier – oh my god, I love him!) make the big mistake of hitchhiking. Well, it’s more like Andrea makes the even bigger mistake to continue on the ride after they drop off David. She is taken to a desolate area and raped. Andrea tries to hide this horrible secret, but it soon comes pouring out as her friend tries to hitch a ride. The police are called, her parents are informed about the crime and her boyfriend is called in as a witness. But this film is mostly about learning not to blame yourself and to know you can find strength in facing your assailant.
Now see, the above sentence makes this episode sound really great, but unfortunately Andrea is a bit dry and a little forced. Granted, they had less than an hour to get a lot of layered themes across to the viewer, but a lot of the intensity gets lost in the shuffle. And the shopping montage… well, it’s silly.
Greene is good and her parents are played by Carrie Snodgress and Matt Clark. Both are fantastic as they take on opposite sides of what they think is right for Andrea. A very young pre-holy roller Kirk Cameron plays the precocious little brother who serves absolutely no purpose (kind of like now) and the late Robert DoQui is pretty great as the cop handling the case. I won’t even go into Moosie Drier, let’s just say he’s adorable. Not a bad way to spend an hour, but after Two Loves for Jenny, well… maybe if Lance Guest had showed up in this one too… just maybe…