‘When Calls the Heart’: A new start, a new season

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Photo: Erin Krakow, Kavan Smith, Jack Wagner Credit: ©2019 Crown Media United States
Photo: Erin Krakow, Kavan Smith, Jack Wagner Credit: ©2019 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Eike Schroter

Hope Valley finds renewal in new arrivals on the When Calls The Heart season 6 premiere.

Baby Jack

Obviously, the cutest new arrival is baby Jack Thornton who is now about 4 months old. The whole town adores him and is happy to help care for the little guy as Elizabeth returns to teaching. While baby Jack is well cared for, he is passed around y quite a bit, so much so that Elizabeth even has trouble tracking down her precious boy.

Elizabeth finds a great match in former student Laura as a full-time nanny for little Jack. In usual Elizabeth fashion, she finds a way to help Laura, too. The arrangement will allow for Laura to pursue college level studies as a correspondent student while still bringing financial support to her family.

A new saloon owner

Hope Valley is also welcoming a new saloon owner as Tom decides to move permanently to be with his family and help his mother. We have not met the new owner on screen, but the new proprietor certainly comes as a surprise to Bill and Henry who are competing for ownership until finally deciding to go in as partners. Their decision to combine their resources and purchasesthe saloon together comes a little too late and about a $1000 short of the new owner’s purchase price.

I found the competitiveness between Bill and Henry amusing and possibly a metaphor for the torch that each carries for Mayor Abigail Stanton. What do you think? Does Bill still see Abigail as possibly more than a trusted friend? Could Henry ever be seen as a proper suitor for the mayor? Just as these gentleman were too late to snatch up the saloon, they may be — spoiler alert if you do not care to watch the previews — have to get in line behind a new fellow who seems to be interested in Abigail in the previews for the new season.

A new way to communicate

That’s right! The telephone has arrived in Hope Valley, though not as smoothly as anticipated. Poor Ned Yost literally gets his wires crossed when trying to assemble the switchboard. An operator is called to town to get the equipment in order. This is when we meet Fiona Miller, a beautiful and spunky telephone representative who gets the switchboard in working order for Hope Valley to receive its first phone call.

Might I add that Fiona not only brings new technology to Hope Valley, she brings a shorter hemline as well!

A new season for Jesse and Clara

Jesse purchases a plot of land and speaks of a future with his dear Clara. Clara is confused, however, when his words do not lead to an official proposal of marriage. While Jesse has a checkered past, he has turned things around and proven to be quite honorable. Still, when he tells Clara he needs to make more money before they can become engaged, she fears he is hiding something.

We learn that Jesse is trying to make amends for stealing from a shop owner when he was younger. While Clara’s beau returned the money when he was caught, he is sending money to the ailing shop owner each month to repay the portion stolen by the other boys who were never caught.

Clara appreciates Jesse’s honesty and it looks like the two are headed for a life together.

Some things never change

With all the new arrivals and changes in Hope Valley, some things stay the same. Our well-intentioned but meddling Rosemary takes another stab at match making when she invites Carson and Faith to dinner at the Coulter home.

The dinner does not go as smoothly as planned but we suspect the good doctor and his “faith”-ful (wink-wink) nurse may have still have eyes for one another. It seems that neither one is willing to admit it, though. Should Rosemary keep trying or might these two find their way to one another all on their own?


My thoughts

It was wonderful to see our frontier friends on screen again. Of course, there is no replacing our beloved Jack. I felt like the show was intentional about not focusing on Jack’s death in the introduction to the episode.

I suspect the producers want to focus on new beginnings and not previous losses. I do hope that Jack’s legacy will live on through the school being named after him and, of course, through his son. I will continue to look for references to Jack that will keep his spirit alive. We need to remember him as life goes on without him.

Of course, it is always exciting to meet another strong female on When Calls the Heart. Fiona Miller seems feisty and headstrong enough to rival even some of Rosemary’s antics. We had an appearance from Lee’s plaid pants and a funny moment where Florence enlists baby Jack as her gossip partner. All in all, it was a fun start to season 6.

I was also excited to see the advertisement for When Hope Calls, a new series this summer following the sisters we met during the Christmas special that were caring for the orphans. Honestly, I am a little worried about getting my “when”, “hope” and “calls” words confused, but I do appreciate the thread of hope being carried through both shows. And I certainly look forward to new stories of characters living and learning on the frontier.

Is it time for the next episode yet? Please share your thoughts below on season 6 episode 1 of When Calls the Heart.