About this blog

In 1972, a crack commando unit was sent to prison by a military court for a crime they didn't commit. These men promptly escaped from a maximum security stockade to the Los Angeles underground. Today, still wanted by the government, they survive as soldiers of fortune. If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you can hire ... The A-Team.

This was the introduction to one of the great TV series of the eighties. The purpose of this blog is to build up the definitive episode guide to the show across its five seasons which ran from 1983 to 1987. So this isn't too much of a burden, I'm intending to watch a couple of episodes a week and given that there were around 100 episodes made during its run, this will turn into a year-long project!

Sunday, 27 June 2010

The Out-of-Towners s1ep7

co-starring: Yaphet Kotto as Charles F Struthers, Priscillia Pointer as Tracy Richter's Mother, Albert Popwell as Digger, Jack Kruschen as Bernie Shatzman, Robert Tessier as Scully, J Jay Saunder as grocery store owner, Billy Jacoby as Nicky, Wendy Hoffman as Tracy Richter
Written by Frank Lupo
Directed by Chuck Bowman

The team are hired by a group of New York shopkeepers who are being forced to pay protection money.

A solid episode from the first season, inevitably shot on the backlot with New York stock footage added in at various points but if you can ignore this then there is much fun to be had. A memorable early scene has BA trying to overcome his fear of flying by going on a commercial airliner but not even making it on board. There's a catchy music score to buoy the episode along with a grand New York theme and another good cue when the team borrow a garbage truck. The acquisition of the truck has a memorable payoff which I won't spoil here and there's also a classic moment when Mr T almost cracks up when he's unable to get the refuse truck moving on Dwight's cry of “Garbage Ho!”. It's a funny example of a mistake turned into a great gag.

Yaphet Kotto (best known for his Bond villain role in 'Live and Let Die') makes a good bad guy even if his hair is rather distracting, though it looks more like a wig than his own hair. The episode builds to a well-staged action finale in which the team have to adopt a traditional siege-like mentality to protect the shopkeepers and Murdock makes the mistake of using an oil drum for cover. Good fun. 8/10

1 comment:

  1. A pretty good ep, boasting a few familiar faces among the supporting players. In addition to Yaphet Kotto, we get veteran stage, TV, and movie actor Priscilla Pointer (mother of Amy Irving, and former mother-in-law of Steven Spielberg). Bad guy henchman Digger is played by the late Albert Popwell, a frequent collaborator of Clint Eastwood's who appeared with Eastwood in four "Dirty Harry" films. Nicky is played by child actor Billy Jacoby, who later co-starred as Mikey in the 1990s high school comedy "Parker Lewis Can't Lose."

    Of interest to "Star Wars" fans is the fact that Yaphet Kotto, who plays the head villain here, turned down the role of Lando Calrissian before it was given to Billy Dee Williams.

    This episode also gives us Murdock's first love interest on the show!