Last updated : 9th November 2014





Episode 'Blind Run'
Story Synopsis Bodie and Doyle are assigned to escort a foreign official during a secret visit to Britain, but enemy assassins seem to know his every move. Writer Ranald Graham
Guest Stars Tommy Boyle Director Tom Clegg
Production Order
& Filming Dates
Block 2, Episode 9
26th September to 13th October 1978Main shoot.
1st November 1978Opening scene of Cowley briefing the lads on the mission. (Reason for delay in shooting this not given.)
Original UK Transmission Season 2, Episode 9
2nd December 1978
Dave's Comment
Story
Action
Pace
Humour
Violence

Essentially a chain of routine action set pieces, a couple of well-staged shoot-outs but all wrapped up in a paper-thin plot. Overall the weakest story of the second season.

The plot premise is a non-event but it's interesting to see Cowley deliberately placing his boys in great danger - "Why did Cowley shake our hands?" / "Because we're expendable?"

The script does contain a smattering of witty one-liners, though and calling the big bodyguard "Tinkerbell" was inspired!

It's not clear why Doyle can't reach Bodie on the R/T presumably he was out of range?

One plot flaw at the end: the team seem to get away far too easily even though Tinkerbell got in the way, surely the enemy agents could have easily caught up with Doyle, Leila and "Mr X"?

Overall a pretty dumb episode.... I'm on Philippa's side!

Sharon's Comment

'Blind Run' is up there in the top ten. From opening to closing we get snappy and clever dialogue, great gun fights and Bodie saving Doyle. Both men look marvelous Bodie seems a bit bigger and more menacing in black and Doyle is lithe and sexy in the tightest pair of jeans yet seen. Nice patch on the rear, too. Unbuttoned shirt and silver chain. Ah.

Best opening ever ok, so I enjoyed seeing Bodie's tummy in the "sun salute" (any bit of Bodie-skin is to be cherished) but also the way the three actors use their eyes, the angle of camera and the dialogue make this a quality moment. Cowley's evasive gaze sets the tone for this, the first of the "betrayal" stories.

While we're never really clued into the murkier areas of the plot, it doesn't matter because what does matter is that when Doyle gets in trouble, Bodie goes to save him and when both men manage to pull the situation out of the soup, Cowley finalizes the rescue. This is a pattern we'll see again.

The first gunfight is a marvel of action choreography. Well done!

Notice at the first house when Doyle is talking to "Houseman" on the R/T how Bodie kind of flinches and then has difficulty keeping a straight face. Something happened out of sight of the camera.

I like Doyle in the second house he's angry, scared, without Bodie and therefore very offensive. The "subtitles" line is a classic.

The scene shot through the broken windscreen of the boat is good when they both realize they've been played for patsies and then decide to carry out the mission anyway and find out what's at the bottom of it. Excellent partner stuff! Watch their faces closely. One wonders what might have happened if Cowley hadn't brought them back. They are not happy with TPTB.

Only one "blooper" ever aired out of Pros, which amazes me. But it takes place as Doyle enters the van and Bodie starts it up before MS was fully settled. If you watch very carefully, you can see Doyle fall out before the film cuts to the bad guys. <G> I'm sure MS was pleased with Lewis or whoever was actually driving!

On older copies watch what Bodie says at the very end when the sound is cut. (He can't remember Phillipa's phone number)

All in all a very rewatchable episode.

Dialogue

Cowley: "You knew about the ISS deal with the CPI! Why was I not informed?!"

Minister: "I'm sorry, George, I hadn't time to clear..."

Cowley: "I'd rather have been up against BOSS or even the KGB. What the hell do you think my men are? Kamikaze pilots?"

Minister: "George, I tried to hint to you that this might be a tough one."

Cowley: "A tough one?! If I lose those boys, there'll be an A1 enquiry!"

Minister: "George, this was sent down from above - do you think they're going to recriminate themselves?"


Leila, uncovering 'Mr X' : "This is NOT Hanish!"

Bodie: "Who the hell is Hanish?"

Leila: "This is some kind of trick!"

Bodie to Doyle: "What's she talking about?!"

Doyle: "I don't know."

Bodie, having not been introduced: "And who the hell is she, anyway?"

Doyle, having been impressed by Leila's combat skills: "You are talking about the woman I love!"


Leila: "Maybe it is you two they are trying to kill? Don't you know what is your assignment? Or are you just a couple of dumb bodyguards?! You are being used."

Bodie, reflecting on the bizarre nature of the mission: "Maybe she's right."

Doyle: "Yeah - we got our assignment and all along sombody's been tipping them off. Why did Cowley shake our hands?"

Bodie: "Because we're expendable? Cowley? But why?"

Doyle, not as shocked by The Cow's apparent betrayal: "Well we'll finish our assignment, deliver the man... and then we'll find out."


Doyle on the R/T: "Escorts 1 and 2 to Big Daddy - over."

Cowley responding: "Big Daddy here, where are you calling from?"

Doyle: "Oh, glad you could join us! Can't tell you where we're calling from - we don't exist, remember?! Got a hot potato here and we're bringing it back!"

Cowley: "Now listen to me!"

Doyle: "No! You listen to me! It's been burning our fingers and we're gonna put it right back where we found it! And if the bucket isn't there in twenty minutes, we're gonna throw it in the water!"

Bodie: "And make sure the bucket's got its engine running when we get there!

Cowley, now realising that the lads have completed the mission, grins: "Good lads!"

Bloopers During the attack in the tunnel, the nature of the damage to one of the villain's cars changes midway through the scene. (Thanks to Roberto Basville)
Sidenotes

According to the production notes this episode was initially known as 'Play Up and Play the Game'. What a strange title - not surprised they changed it!

As well as the above-mentioned van scene going wrong, Lewis was nearly very badly injured, too: in the scene where he walks along the plank, it apparently fell too soon.

In UK repeat transmissions during the 1980s we only heard the first few digits of Phillipa's telephone number because it transpired to be a genuine one. However VHS, DVD and BluRay versions from Contender and Network are intact. (Many thanks to Jesper Antvorskov and Ros Connors.)

Deja Vu

Tommy Boyle (Charlie) appeared with Martin and Lewis in their New Avengers episode ('Obsession'). Seems to have left acting around 2001.

Kevork Malikyan ("Mr X") played the rooftop assassin in 'Backtrack', while Gabor Vernon (Ambassador 2) resurfaced in 'Dead Reckoning'.

Locations
Cowley briefs the lads on their latest mission - and, disturbingly, shakes their hands - in the grounds of Warfield Hall, Warfield.
The lads meet up with fellow CI5 op Charlie and wait for the arrival of "Mr X" at the King George V Dock, North Woolwich...
... But the entrance/exit to it was a cheat: Kensal Green Gasworks!. The geography has changed somewhat since then in that there is now a link road to Kensal Road in place of where the extrance/exit used to be. But the front building still looks pretty much the same.
Watching over the safe passage of the lads' charge, the surveillance room and the gates for Meeting House 2 and were shot at Stanmore Hall. (Wonderfully spooky use of lighting here!)
After leaving the "docks", there's a slight location cheat: the cars drive back over the bridge near the gasworks (and then turn left down Kensal Road)..
The two cars swing from Hazlewood Crescent into Adair Road, Kensington.
The next shot is wonderful. Supposedly on an incognito mission, our heroes are waved at by dozens of primary school kids and their teachers as they drive past - who must have recognised Martin and Lewis! The action takes place on Southern Row, Kensington - the school no longer exists but the Manchester Court tenement block still stands.
Doyle gets inquisitive about Bodie's latest airline hostess. Again we're on Southern Row, Kensington.
A blue car tags along by Appleford Road (again!).
All three cars head back up Adair Road and then hang a left into Hazlewood Crescent. I've cheated a little with the Google Street View "camera" here to highlight the houses in the background.
... further along Hazlewood Crescent! (Difficult to get a useful angle in Google Street View.)
A fourth car joins the convoy, just by Trellick Tower, Golborne Road. In the screengrab, the camera angle used makes it difficult to see the bridge.
Charlie tries get the pursuers to overtake on Adair Road. It's difficult to identify this street as the building in the background of the screengrab is now obscured by the large tree. Notice how neither Bodie nor Doyle are looking where they are driving!!
The production unit then moved to another location for the next sequence, here approaching the tunnel on Ellesmere Avenue, Mill Hill. It isn't possible to go through it via Google Street View yet, so I've used photos kindly supplied by Bob Rocca...
... The tunnel shoot-out starts. The white house seen in the background has been recently demolished...
... Bodie's on the offensive!
"Mr X" is safely delivered to the first meeting house, Ockwells Manor, Maidenhead. It seems to have been delipidated at the time.
With Bodie leading the pursuers away, Doyle escapes down Kensal Road in the Ford Fiesta van. The red-brick building seen in the background of the screengrab was unfortunately covered in scaffolding on the day the Google Street Van went past!
Bodie's ruse to fox the pursuers leads along Cringle Street, South Lambeth.
Bodie turns in to a Freight Yard on Nine Elms Lane. I've had to cheat a little with the Google Street View shot because new buildings now obscure the view.
A shoot-out in the railway yard is South Lambeth Freight Yard on Nine Elms Lane
Meanwhile Doyle, Mr X and his bodyguard 'Tinkerbell' arrive safely at the second meeting house... except there is a location cheat here because the gates we see in the episode are actually outside the first house.
The second meeting house's interiors and exterior is Oakley Court, Water Oakley...
Penned in and under fire, Doyle & co escape. Although this location is genuinely by water, the ensuing boat scenes were actually shot on the Grand Union Canal by Ladbroke Grove. In this scene Bodie comes to the rescue
The team escapes by van, filmed at Cadby Hall, Hammersmith, sadly demolished in 1983.



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