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, 7 November 2010

Double Heat s3ep6

co-starring: Dana Elcar as George Olsen, Steven Williams as Eddie Devane, Michael Baseleon as Tommy Largo, Christine De Lisle as Ginger, Reid Cruikshanks as Mr Reynolds, Leah Ayres as Jenny Olsen
Written by Stephen Katz
Directed by Craig R Baxley

The daughter of a man due to testify against a famous mobster is kidnapped and the A-Team is hired to find her before the trial begins.

Beyond the terrible title, this is an entertaining episode, beginning with a familiar plot but taking it in an interesting direction and injecting a good deal of humour in the process. Katz was one of the show's better writers, generally delivering fun scripts that avoided the derivative path taken by some writers.

The sauntering saxophone theme that opens the episode suggests a laidback tone and that is exactly what the episode delivers from the off. It's still a very busy episode but the highlights tend to be comedic rather than action-based. The best of these comes early on when Face (sporting a moustache for no discernible reason) smooth talks his way into a gym before struggling with the weights and getting thrown out of the window into the bay.

The cast seem to relish these lighter moments with Hannibal parachuting into the villain's property in full lizard costume and there's a very funny helicopter acquisition scam with Face & Murdock. In this episode, Murdock is pretending to be a news reporter delivering a running commentary on events, something which works well and leads to a good final gag. There's not much here for BA but he always tended to fare better in the action-based episodes than the comedic ones.

The story is an interesting variation on the standard testify/kidnap plot, though it is a little jarring to see Baselon again, here playing a different mobster called Tommy to the mobster called Tommy he played in 'Steel'! The action is fairly standard but director Baxley keeps things moving (though rather overdoes the handheld camerawork). The recycled sets and locations stop this seeming as fresh as it would have done in season two but it remains a enjoyable watch nonetheless. 8/10

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