The summer prior to this third (and first color) season premiere, ABC had begun a huge promotional campaign centered around Tabitha, enticing viewers to finally find out if Sam & Darrin's child was indeed a witch. This is the first of three parts and it's a wonderful introduction to Erin Murphy as Tabitha.

Erin gets more close-ups than anyone, including Liz, and she charms the audience right away with those big blue eyes and adorable smile. It's obvious she's a happy, loving child who despite her 2 years (yes, she's actually a year older than the character) is uncannily focused and comfortable in front of a camera crew.

Besides Erin as Tabitha, the show has introduced several fresh new looks and mood with the advent of color: Most noticeably, the cast is extremely tanned (check out Liz in that nightie!!!) and the colors almost jump out at you all the way from that flying Octopus right down to Aggie's lavender and green "flying suit" (TRIVIA: Lavender was Aggie's favorite color.) Dick York plays the proud papa to the hilt and the exchange between him and Endora over using witchcraft in front of Tabitha is a highlight.

With this episode, "Bewitched" never looks back...it's now officially a sharper, cleaner, funnier show...for a few seasons at least!

FAVE QUOTE: Endora: "We must tell Darwin. Let's go in and watch him fall on the floor in an emotional heap!"

GUEST STARS: Robert Q. Lewis (Diego Fenman) would meet Tabitha again years later as her TV producer in "TV or not TV" and Lindsay Workman (Dr. Koblin) you may remember as Darrin's doc in the pilot episode.

DIANE WATCH:That's Diane as Tabitha standing on the doctor's desk in the long shots in the opening..

© Review Copyright 1997 by SCOTT VIETS

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