The Last Great Adventure of the Summer

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#42: “The Last Great Adventure of the Summer”
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Proverbs 23:24

24The father of a righteous man has great joy; he who has a wise son delights in him.

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La última aventura del verano
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The Last Great Adventure of the Summer

“The Last Great Adventure of the Summer” is episode #42 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written and directed by Phil Lollar, and originally aired on September 3, 1988.


Terry's boring summer takes a drastic turn when he and his father are ambushed by a terrorist.



Terry Johnston is having the worst summer of his life. He tells Whit that all he and his overprotective dad have done is go to church, the library, and Whit's End. Whit sympathizes with Terry, then Dad picks him up to go see an educational film. Whit asks if they would drop some garbage bags in the dumpster on the way outside. But as they approach the dumpster behind Whit's End, a strange man, Nigel, suddenly steps out of the shadows. He greets Dad as "Catspaw" and demands that he hand over "the formula."

Mr. Johnston looks frightened until the stranger takes a step toward Terry. Suddenly, he springs into action, dropping the stranger to the pavement with some karate chops. Then he tells Terry to run. They hop in his car and race away. Terry can't believe any of this is happening. He is even more stunned when his dad reveals that he's with the CIA. Unfortunately, the stranger after Terry's dad is hot on their heels. He ends up chasing them into an open boxcar at the train depot. There, Terry and Mr. Johnston are knocked unconscious with sleeping gas. They wind up in London, trapped in the penthouse apartment of an evil man named Maxim. Maxim is their strange pursuer's boss. The room is filled with aquariums. Maxim enters and demands the formula. When Dad refuses, Maxim threatens him with a tank full of piranhas.

This time Terry takes action, stomping on the stranger's foot, then smashing the piranha tank. Dad grabs Terry, and they escape to the roof. Maxim and his henchmen clamber up after them. Dad and Terry are trapped!...Or are they?

Just in the nick of time, Scotland Yard and the CIA appear to capture Maxim and his cronies. But Nigel won't be robbed of his revenge. He suddenly pushes Terry's dad off the roof. The agents drag Nigel away as he laughs at his "victory." Once Maxim and cronies are gone, a horrified Terry discovers that his father is safe - on a window washer's scaffolding just below the roof.

The window washers were also agents. Terry finds that everything that has happened was planned from the start. Now that Maxim thinks Catspaw is dead, Terry's father can retire from the agency and spend more time with his son! But the irony is, because everything is top secret for security reasons, Terry can't tell anyone about his adventure!

Discussion Questions

  1. Should Terry's dad have kept his profession a secret from Terry?
    • Why or why not?
  2. How would you feel if your mom or dad were a secret agent?
  3. Can you think of something heroic that your mother or father has done?
    • How about caring for you, providing for you, and loving you?
    • Are those things heroic?
    • Explain.


Heard in episode

Mentioned in episode

Character Mentioned By
Ned Lewis John Whittaker
Brad Dillard John Whittaker
Sherman John Whittaker


  • This episode takes place away from Odyssey: Episodes That Take Place Away from Odyssey
  • VERSION DIFFERENCE: The broadcast version of this episode has Chris mowing her lawn and having trouble with the starter.
  • One very interesting note concerning the actors is that Hal Smith (Whit) does Maxim and Will Ryan (Eugene) does Nigel. Not only that, but Charles Knox Robinson (Hank Murray) does George Johnston. So #169: “Hold Up!” is a reversal of the good and bad guys!
  • Early AIO illustrations show Whit (not Terry's father) with Terry Johnston running around a corner from a bad guy. Perhaps this episode was originally intended to introduce Whit's secret past.
  • Many of the situations in this episode are similar to those in the Alfred Hitchcock movie "North By Northwest."
  • On the October 31, 2007 edition of the Official Podcast, it was revealed that Townsend Coleman recited George Johnston's lines from this episode for his first audition.
  • This episode has been translated into Spanish under the name, "La última aventura del verano".



George Johnston: I work for the government, just like a mailman.
Terry Johnston: Yeah, but this is a little bit different then delivering letters!

Nigel: So Catspaw, we meet again.

Terry Johnston: Why do you keep calling him Catspaw? His name is George, George Johnston!

Terry Johnston: I can't believe this. You're just my Dad! How can you know something vital to national security!?
George Johnston: Well, son, someone has to.

George Johnston: You've been quiet for the last couple of hours. What's the matter, didn't dinner agree with you?
Terry Johnston: Well, the bag of peanuts was kinda tough, but the two syrups for dessert were great.