I watch, I confess, the 1971 pilot episode of The Waltons, the Christmas story called The Homecoming. Yes, I know. Shocking.
(Spoiler alert for you softies who might ever watch this.)
But the odd thing about this story --aside from portraying a romantic vision of a lost America in 1930's rural Virginia-- is the conflict between Momma (Patricia Neal) and John Boy (Richard Thomas) over the 17-year old boy's habit of locking the door to his bedroom.
Now anyone with half a brain might suspect what an adolescent male was doing in his bedroom at that age and why he wanted the door locked. So the mother's accusatory and suspicious persistence about it is, well, kinda creepy.
Turns out that John Boy is not doing what we all assume he was doing, but is writing. And since he is being raised for a trade, he is hiding it from his family.
Given its time, it does nod to the PC pieties about race that now suffocate us, but from the perspective of 2015, it has a quality that you can't count on anymore in drama or comedy, where it pokes fun at its characters but never holds them in contempt.
The inter-generational family solidarity, the vibrant relations of men and women as different beings, the overt religion, the connections of a rural community,--segregated but friendly-- etc. well, romantic though it be, has a dignity that any attempt to portray a contemporary family would find almost impossible to carry off.