Expect the Worst

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#497: “Expect the Worst”
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Original Release Date
Date Recorded
March 20, 2002
Recorded at
38: Battle Lines
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2 Corinthians 1:10-11

10He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, 11as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.

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Expect the Worst

“Expect the Worst” is episode #497 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written by John Fornof and Nathan Hoobler (among others), and originally aired on June 22, 2002.


Using Connie’s information, Mitch makes a critical connection in proving what Novacom is doing, but the situation changes when the tower on Tom Riley’s property blows up.



Monica barges into Mr. Charles office with a question. Does the Novabox really help people? When Charles dodges her questions, Monica threatens him with going public. Charles counters that anything she says will implicate herself as well. Monica storms out.

Mitch barges into Agent Bourland’s office with a break-through. Novacom is testing the Novabox to influence what people think and do. What’s more, he says he can prove it with the outcome of an upcoming election. Bourland is unsure, but is convinced when Mitch brings a newspaper the next day showing him the election reversed as he predicted. Bourland says that he’ll get subpoenas and search warrants, prompting Mitch to feel like they still aren’t doing enough. He hopes someone in Odyssey is doing something about it.

In fact, there are some in Odyssey who are trying to do something, Mandy, Alex, and Cal. The three of them debate what to do about the boxes. How can they save Odyssey? Cal suggests climbing the tower to turn it off. Alex and Mandy think he’s crazy, but Cal says he has to do it...tomorrow night.

The next morning, Tom finds a pot melting on the stove and Agnes with a burnt hand. Agnes doesn’t seem herself (she forgets Tom is her husband) and asks Tom to take her back home...to Hillingdale Haven. Whit, feeling like the worst is still coming, asks Jack to gather a group of people to pray. Whit then talks to Tom, who says he would pull down the tower with his bare hands if he could.

That night, Alex finds Cal and tries to convince him not to climb it. Cal ignores the warning and climbs anyway, leaving a walkie-talkie for Alex. At the top, Cal sees a guy running down the hill and then finds something very weird. Before he can tell Alex what it is, Tom Riley comes running up, yelling for Alex to get away. He says the tower is going to blow up! He grabs the walkie-talkie and tells Cal to hurry down. Cal reaches the ground, but hurts his ankle. Tom helps him along, but the tower blows up behind them, knocking them down. They both lose consciousness.

Soon after, Whit arrives and finds Tom at the tower site. Tom tells him Cal was still unconscious and went to the hospital. Tom can’t remember anything that happened at the tower. Whit asks who blew up the tower, but Tom can’t remember that either. Officer Stew Burke walks up and tells the two of them he has to arrest Tom...they have good reason to believe he blew up the tower. Whit brings defense attorney Michael Frasier to see Tom. Frasier tells Tom that he should plead guilty so they can get him off by reason of insanity. Whit protests, but Tom reluctantly agrees.

The trial begins a few days later. A group (including Connie, Jack and Joanne, and Aubrey) prays at Whit’s End while the prosecuting attorney Frank Pierce presents the evidence against Tom. At the end of the day, it looks hopeless for Tom as the prosecution finally rests their case.

Discussion Questions

  1. Why did Whit feel prayer was important?
    • Have you ever prayed during a tough time?
      • What happened?
  2. Choose a character from this episode. If you’d been that person, what would you have prayed for?
    • Why?
  3. Read 2 Corinthians 1:10-11. How did prayer help Paul?
    • Whom could you pray for today?


Heard in episode

Role Voice Actor
Agnes Riley Susan Silo
Alex Jefferson Travis Tedford
Aubrey Shepard Danielle Judovits
Bennett Charles Jess Harnell
Cal Jordan Adam Pavlakovich
Connie Kendall Katie Leigh
Frank Pierce Jess Harnell
Jack Allen Alan Young
John Whittaker Paul Herlinger
Judge Debbie McLeod
Mandy Straussberg Aria Curzon
Melvin Steward Corey Burton
Michael Frasier Phil Crowley
Monica Stone Melissa Disney
Newscaster Bob Luttrell
Peter Bourland Keith Silverstein
Robert Mitchell Steve Burns
Officer Stew Burke Marshal Younger
Tom Riley Walker Edmiston

Mentioned in episode

Character Mentioned By
Martha Carmen Newscaster
Eugene Meltsner Robert Mitchell
Joanne Allen Jack Allen


  • It would never be resolved how Tom knew the tower was going to blow up in this episode.
  • Even though Mitch isn't supposed to have contact with the outside world in this episode, Agent Bourland doesn't find it suspicious that he knows about the buying habits of the people of Odyssey.
  • During this episode's scene at the tower, neither Tom nor Cal are heard going through the fence surrounding the tower that was mentioned in #457: “Opportunity Knocks”.


John Whittaker: I can't escape this nagging feeling that... we haven't even seen the worst of it yet.

Tom Riley: I've got no one to blame but myself. I'm the one. I let them do it.
John Whittaker: Let who do what?
Tom Riley: I let Novacom build their tower on my property. I'm just sorry that they ever came to town!
John Whittaker: Some of us are trying to put a stop to it.
Tom Riley: Well, Whit, I tell ya... if I could, I would pull that thing down, I swear I would, with my bare hands! I swear I would!

Alex Jefferson: I'm here to stop you.
Cal Jordan: Yeah, sure.
Alex Jefferson: I mean it, Cal! This is one of those "kids don't try this at home" moments! You're gonna get hurt!

Tom Riley: Cal? Get off the tower! It's rigged! It's gonna blow up!
Cal Jordan: Blow up?! I'm coming! I'm coming!