One of the few times HBC knows that a boy on 'Lassie' wore short pants was when Timmy's family hosted a boy from England. In this episode, an English boy (about 10-11 years old) appears in what may have been Jon's second season (1959). The episode was "Bundles from Britain". The English boy looks a few years older than Timmy. He is an English relative visiting the Martins. Many American TV shows in the 1950s and 60s had an episode involving short pants. The most famous was the 'Leave it to Beaver' episode. In the 'Lassie' episode, the well-dressed English boy visits Jeff's farm and, later, Jeff's school. He wears his school uniform, peaked cap, striped blazer, short pants), knee socks, and well polished shoes. The collar and tie were not British. In one scene at school, the class is invited by the teacher to ask their British visitor about his country. One of the boys in the class, all of whom are clad in jeans and sneakers, asks, "Why are you wearing those skinny little pants". (Apparently Timmy himself was to polite to raise the issue.) The English lad responds that all the boys in England dress like him, and his dad wore them when he was a boy, and, besides, it helps him "to not outgrow childhood too fast.". He adds that his parents think it will toughen them up, and that they are children and should dress as such. (And HBC's British contributors have written very much the same things!) The class seemed satisfied by this answer. I don't think a real American class in the 1950s/60s would have been. In this episode Timmy's classmates do pick a fight with his cousin, not about his clothes (there's not another word about them). I think it was over who's tougher and stronger. Timmy's cousin pounded the American boys in the fight, and to show their respect for the victor, one of the boys wears a peaked cap and the other a blazer and tie in a closing scene. As for the shorts and knee socks, that was a bridge too far.
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