Last updated : 1st August 2016
|Story Synopsis||An amnesiac girl is the only clue to a possible terrorist attack.||Writer||Brian Clemens|
|Guest Stars||Ben Cross||Director||William Brayne|
& Filming Dates
|Block 4, Episode 3
|Original UK Transmission||Season 4, Episode 7
19th October 1980
Although commencing very promisingly (the ambulance coming under fire, with Doyley getting a chance to do some "gymnastics" was great!) I think the episode soon runs out of steam. There is too much "padding" as the lads chase around country lanes, bizarrely stopping off for ice-creams, pints of beer, games of skittles, etc. (As one of the other CI5 agents remarks: "This pub-crawl you're on....".) However it would be unrealistic if they had found the house straight away, of course.
We meet new CI5 op Murphy for the first time. Ben Cross as fellow squad member provokes some good, revealing dialogue between with Doyle. Note how even though B & D often have "lively discussions" as soon as Stuart suggests Bodie gets up people's noses, Doyle jumps straight to his partner's defence.
(And to further discredit Stuart, it's July 1980 yet he is still wearing flares!!?!)
In this story Doyle says he has spent three years with CI5, yet in the 1977 episode 'Close Quarters' he had already served "two years and three months". A surprising continuity glitch, given both stories were written by Brian Clemens. Anyway, it's just a small point.... hardly worth mentioning really!
The biggest "hole" in the plot is that, despite the desperate urgency to find where Gerda had been held, Cowley only puts Stuart and Doyle on to the case!
A couple of instances of the show making fun of itself here: firstly Doyle complains that Bodie's fast driving will wear the tyres out. And later the young copper whose only mode of transport is a push-bike says "They'll probably expect me to jump into my high-powered motor, go screaming round corners, tyres screeching... just like on television!"
In fact there is a fair amount of humour, here, which makes up for the weak plot.
Overall the episode never really fires the adrenalin, to be honest. In fact neither does the disrobed Linda Hayden!! (I don't believe I just said that!). The action-packed ending just looked banal to me.
Although there are some good dialogue moments and, in fairness to Brian Clemens, the script was written under difficult circumstances - see the Sidenotes section.
I enjoy this episode but it's not a favorite. The "tone" is off. It's as if they weren't sure whether to do comedy or suspense and settled for a touch of both without focus.
Cowley speaks German better than Gerda!
Good things: Ray rolling and shooting during the attack on the ambulance and howling Bodie's name when he returns from destroying everyone. Bodie, clearly in need of some brew and tired of driving in the country, playing the "bad cop" with Gerda: "C'mon, Fritz...." Doyle, resplendant in green & white during the road trip.
Cute touches: the watch. Bodie with a dislocated shoulder and/or broken arm whining after he's killed the bad guys. Doyle & Stuart fencing - Doyle defending Bodie! Bodie getting Cowley some booze and coffee – that whole exchange is good. Bodie sounds so military! Bodie and his poetry - "blushy dawn". Doyle as the milkman. Doyle and Stuart working the stairs together - nice, nice.
I like the entire sequence once Bodie figures out about the bad guys. His violent approach to the bank folk and his headlong attack on the missile, etc are Pure Bodie. Very fine work by Lew! There is no one who can move from killer to cuddly as well!
Not a great episode but worth watching more than once.
Bodie, suggestively: "It's thirsty work this, isn't it?"
Gerda: "I am not thirsty."
Bodie, cussing under his breath: "Just when we were beginning to hit it off!"
Doyle, drafting in fellow CI5 op Stuart for his knowledge of South London: "Well, you're the expert."
Stuart, taken aback by the curtness: "That's right - go straight on."
Doyle: "You must be new."
Stuart, surprised: "Why, how long have you got?"
Doyle: "Three years active."
Stuart: "I'm in my fifth year. That makes you the new boy, doesn't it?"
Doyle: "Five years? You must have kept yourself quiet."
Stuart: "Maybe that's because I work undercover... and I've never asked for assistance."
Doyle: "You're supposed to be the 'king' of South London - how come I've never heard of you?"
Stuart: "I've heard of you, Doyle - good things. No-one ever told me you talked too much!"
Stuart: "You work with Bodie most of the time, right? I've heard he can be a right pain."
Doyle, irritated: "Bodie's alright!"
Stuart: "Just testing. Loyalty's a very rare commodity these days. If we get into a situation, I like to be sure of my back-up."
Doyle: "I'll be there."
Stuart: "Yeah, you're OK, Doyle. Mouth flaps a bit too much but you're OK."
Doyle: "Look, do you wanna try to stop my mouth flapping?!"
Cowley, offering his hip flask: "Bodie - cold morning."
Bodie, taking the flask: "Ah, thank you, sir!"
Cowley: "It's empty - needs filling."
Bodie, pouting: "Well there's nowhere open this time of morning."
Cowley: "Regard it as a test of initiative. Success will be reflected in your yearly assessment."
Bodie, offering Cowley a refilled canteen: "Here you are, sir."
Cowley: "Where the devil did you manage to..."
Bodie: "Initiative, sir. Allied to a certain personal charm, of course, and a canteen run by a very susceptible young lady."
Cowley, laughing: "You're incorrigible, Bodie!"
Bodie: "Thank you, sir. I trust that won't appear on my yearly assessment!
Doyle, half-joking: "Try and leave somebody left alive, eh?"
Stuart, grim: "Yeah - the mother and child."
Cowley: "We now have reason to believe they have an anti-tank missile. Can't we at least change the venue?"
Humber: "You've not been made privy to the main purpose of this meeting. Fundamentally it is Security - to be provided by us for our visitor. Now if we have to admit that he may not be safe here...? Any change in venue would be regarded with derision. "
Cowley: "Derision is better than disaster."
Humber: "Mr Cowley, you underestimate yourself. I have every confidence in you. Why else would I place all security in your able hands?"
Cowley: "To ensure that should anything go wrong, it will be my head that rolls. But should anything go wrong, Mr Humber, a great many heads will roll. Literally. Yours included."
Cowley, aware that the villains' missile could be launched any second: "Block off the shot with the chopper if you have to."
Chopper pilot: "Oh, thanks a bunch!"
The Capri has Disappearing Headrests Syndrome!
Gerda tells Bodie to turn left at one point - but he actually turns right!
When Bodie stops to buy three ice-creams, they have clearly been prepared before he has even asked for them! Martin ad-libs "That was quick!".
This is another ep that was written hurriedly when LWT made its sudden decision to renew the show in 1980. This may explain why the story uses elements from one Brian wrote entitled 'The Girl in Pink Pyjamas' for the early 1960s Patrick McGoohan series Danger Man (thanks to Bob Rocca) and a short story for TV Times magazine in 1979 entitled 'High Noon for The Professionals'...
... Intriguingly when a copy of the script was sold on eBay some years ago, it was signed by Brian with the postscript "An example of how NOT to write 'em!"
The story as originally written ran to less than the usual 50 minutes, so the scenes involving the pub and skittles were very late additions to the script - penned during the last few days of primary filming - and shot by the Second Unit.
Ben Cross (Stuart) is best remembered for his lead role as Harold Abrahams in Chariots of Fire. Still acting today but, apart from the 1984 mini-series The Far Pavillions, has not done anything particularly memorable since.
Linda Hayden (Gerda) appeared in various British horror movies of the 1970s and did a couple of Confessions of films. Very little work over the last fifteen years, sadly.
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