Sunday, December 20, 2015

Log 75: Have a Nice Weekend (Season 3, Episode 7)

Episode 59

A crazy lady, men fighting in the street, rich ladies, and juvenile delinquents all cross paths with Pete and Jim.

I could not figure out why this episode was titled "Have a Nice Weekend", then I realized that in the opening scene Jim says it's a nice day for the Rams and Packers game. Well, duh, if it's a nice day for a professional football game, it must be a Sunday. 

Their football discussion is ended when they receive a radio call to see the man at 319 Oakleaf about a female mental case.

When they arrive at Oakleaf Pete and Jim get out of the car and start walking towards the house with Jim in the lead. When Jim is almost at the door, the man they are supposed to see grabs Pete and stops him. 
He tells Pete he's afraid she'll hurt herself.
Unbeknownst to him, Jim reaches the door of 319 Oakleaf without his partner.  When the door opens the rookie officer finds himself staring down the barrel of a gun brandished by the female mental patient.
"One move out of you, sheriff, and I'll let you have it right between the horns."
This lady wants to shoot Jim Reed? She is either crazy or blind.
[Pete...Pete, where are my horns?]
Jim tries to get away from her by acting like he made a mistake and needs to go check with his partner. But the crazy lady, Anne White, won't let him go. She threatens to blow a hole in him, "big enough to drive a herd through", if he doesn't get inside.
While Pete and the man watch from the front yard, Jim cautiously enters the house.
Pete formulates a plan to save his partner, but he will need some help to execute it. With no time to wait for backup, he recruits the neighbor to help him.
Pete tells him to call Anne's house and disguise his voice. He instructs him to ask for Officer Reed.

Jim, alone with Anne and her gun, tries to build some rapport with the disturbed woman. He tries to convince Anne that they are old friends, he tells her that she must remember him.
This somewhat works, eventually Anne does think she remembers Jim. However, she doesn't recall him fondly. She thinks he locked her up once, put her in a cage. He quickly denies his involvement in her real or imagined incarceration. 
[No, that wasn't me. That was Officer Wells.]
Outside of Miss White's house, Pete's plan is being put into action. Her phone rings and she is rather surprised to hear the caller ask for Officer Reed.
[It's for you.]
[Are you sure you want to point that gun at me? I mean, have you looked at me?]
At first Jim lets the caller that he can't talk, but then he begins speaking in some kind of code (I think). He tells the person on the other end that the problem is not with the connecting rods but with the generator. He then halts the conversation without hanging up the phone. He looks up at Anne and asks her for a glass of water.

"It's kinda warm in here. You wouldn't have a glass of water, wouldya?"
She denies his request and explains that they only serve rot gut there. Jim politely refuses.
The nervous officer returns to the phone call while Anne keeps her eyes and gun trained on him. With her back to the front door, Anne doesn't see the freckled fingers that push it open.

Jim manages to distract Anne with the fake phone call as his partner sneaks up behind her then grabs her gun. While Pete handcuffs her, the angry woman demands the officer get "him" out of there and leave her be. She then starts talking to "him", letting "him" know he's a good for nothing.

The depth of her hatred for "him" is revealed when the camera shows the audience where she imagines "him" to be.

Before Pete and Jim escort her out of the house, Anne breaks down weeping and confesses that she's never had a friend in her life. When Jim goes to the chair to get a better look at the bullet hole, she tells the policeman to leave "him" alone. She sullenly states that "He'll find out what it's like to be alone."

That's the end of her wild west fantasy.
Without much time to recover from their hostage situation, Malloy and Reed are called to 23780 Overview Drive to see the woman about 459 suspects.

The well-dressed and polite Mrs. Green meets the officers on her front lawn. She recounts how she caught a burglar in her home as she returned from her bridge game. She saw the thief run out of the back then climb the fence into her neighbors', the Fosters', yard. Mrs. Green got a good look at the burglar and was shocked to see that he was a clean-cut, twelve-year-old boy. She describes the boy to Malloy and Reed by saying, "He certainly wasn't one of those hippie-types".

After Mrs. Green describes the thief, Reed asks her what was stolen. She reports that two expensive items, a diamond and emerald necklace along with a natural mink, were taken from her home. While Reed returns to the patrol car to broadcast the description of the stolen items, Malloy stays behind to speak with Mrs. Green. 

She's worried that the boy may have also robbed the Fosters' home. Pete assures her that they will check out their house next. Before he leaves, Mrs. Green asks him something that has been weighing on her mind.
"Just think, a little boy. What are things coming to, officer?"
Pete doesn't have an answer to her question.
"I wish I knew," he replies.
Pete and Jim arrive at the Fosters' residence and knock on the door. 
[Hey, Pete, if I put my finger over the peephole they won't know we're police officers. We can surprise 'em, won't that be funny? Why are you making that face again, Pete?] 
They are soon greeted by Mrs. Foster and her teapot. She doesn't have time to talk to the police, she's expecting guests and doesn't want them to catch her in her apron.
Once again, Jim has failed to talk his cover off in the presence of  a lady. I don't think he's being rude or forgetful this time. I think his intuition is telling him not to bother being polite to Mrs. Foster.
She's shocked that yet another one of her friends was burglarized, the thefts are becoming epidemic in the area. She's also shocked to hear how young the thief is described to be. Mrs. Foster seems annoyed that they are looking for the young suspect around her home, she thinks they should be looking for him where "those long-haired kooks hang out".
[Did she just tell us how to do our job?]
[Let's go where the kooks hang out, partner.]

After failing to find any twelve-year-old boys among the local kooks. Reed and Malloy return to the station. Mac stops them in the hallway and asks if they left anything out of their 459 report. He was hoping they would have gotten a more complete description of the suspect. There's been twenty similar crimes in the past six months and detectives don't have much to go on, they haven't been able to get prints from any of the crime scenes. Pete finds this hard to believe.
"A twelve-year-old professional thief?"
He may not be one now, but Mac wants them to find him before he becomes one.
"Maybe we better find him before he grows up and decides to pull something really big."
Back in the car, Reed is clearly sick of talking about adolescent burglars, he has more important things on his mind.
"They going up or down?" he asks Malloy.

"Are what going up or down?" Malloy replies confusedly.
Reed explains that he is asking about the hemlines of skirts and dresses.
Skirt lengths were a hot topic in 1970, Life magazine devoted at least two covers to the subject that year. 
 Designers had introduced the longer midi-length skirt to much resistance from the American woman who preferred the established miniskirt.

The young officer comments that it must cost a fortune to keep up with the new styles. His confirmed bachelor partner agrees that it must cost a fortune...for some.

"Only if you're married."

The married Reed calls him a "rat".

They continue driving, stopping when they find two men duking it out in front of a church. Since they can't leave this in God's hands, Malloy pulls over to the curb. He tells them to "simmer down, break it up" while one man shouts "210" and the other shouts "111".
Reed asks what 210 means, but nobody ever answers his question. Whatever it is, the other man is sick to death of it. 
Malloy wants to know if 210 is what they were "scrapping about".
It comes out that these two are fighting about hymns. The man with the glasses really likes "Onward Christian Soldiers", the man in gray doesn't.
"Uh, the way I read this, you two are connected with the church, right?"
That's right Malloy, the man in gray is the choir master and the man in the glasses is the organist. The organist wants to play his favorite hymn every Sunday, the choir master will not have his choir sing "Onward Christian Soldiers" every week. Reed proposes that they sing "A Mighty Fortress" instead.
Malloy thinks that's a good idea, he always liked that one.

Reed's suggestion ends the fight, but not in the way he intended. They don't like his song choice, but they do finally agree on something. Both the choir master and the organist think that officers are "clearly uninitiated".
They begin to walk back to the church, but Malloy's not letting them get away that easy. He wants to fill out F.I. cards on these two.

After they're done talking to those two, Jim clears 1-Adam-12. The RTO clears them and gives them another call, 459 suspects have just left 11659 Carville.

11659 Carville is the upscale address of Mrs. Ruth Phillips. She didn't plan on being home today, and it seems the burglars didn't figure she'd be there either. She tells the officers that today was her bridge day. Pete, remembering something Mrs. Green said, stops her when she mentions the card game.
"Excuse me, ma'am, did you say 'bridge'?"
Mrs. Phillips wasn't feeling well today, instead of playing with her friends she laid down and fell asleep. When she awoke, she heard someone moving around in the dressing room. She called out and he ran.
Jim asks her to clarify. Earlier she referred to multiple thieves, now she referred to a single thief.
There was more than one person in Mrs. Phillips' dressing room, but she only got a good look at one of them. Then one of them pushed her and she struck her head on something. She was stunned for a moment, but she did manage to get a glimpse at both of them. She was shocked to see that they were just boys.

[This sounds familiar.]
Jim asks if one of the boys was about twelve with blond hair.
Mrs. Phillips confirms that one of the boys was blond and very neatly dressed, she had never seen him before. However, she did recognize the other boy. He looked like Eva Foster's son.
[I don't wanna talk to Mrs. Foster again.]
Now that they have descriptions of the suspects, Pete turns his attention to the afternoon activities of the local ladies. He asks Mrs. Phillips about the bridge circle and finds out there is close to sixty women in the circle which has existed for about six months. They play at each other's houses on a regular rotating schedule. Armed with sufficient information, the officers leave and let Mrs. Phillips know that they will turn the case over to detectives.
On the front steps Jim wonders if Mrs. Phillips could have been mistaken about the Foster boy.
"I don't know, but it will only take eight blocks to find out," replies Pete.

Pete and Jim arrive at the Foster's house and unbuckle their seat belts!
This is the first time we see...
my favorite..
stock footage!
Where were we? Oh yeah, back at Mrs. Foster's. While they wait for someone to answer the door, Pete speculates on how Mrs. Foster's day went since they last left her.
"Wonder if they caught her with her apron on."

This time Mrs. Foster's mother, Mrs. Britton, answers the door with a big smile and a "hello, boys". She's very hard of hearing and a little loopy.
Pete loudly asks her if they can talk to her daughter.
Mrs. Britton tells him, "You just wait and let me see," before she disappears back into the house.

While they wait for Mrs. Foster, Pete sends Jim to check the back of the house. When the lady of the house arrives at the door, she's very upset they have bothered her during her bridge game. 

"I was playing six no trump. What is now, officer?"
As Pete is being scolded by Mrs. Foster, Jim is following the driveway to a padlocked garage with a basketball net above it. A basketball rolls across the deserted the driveway, whoever had been dribbling the ball is nowhere to be seen. Jim then runs into Mrs. Britton as she leaves the side door of the garage holding a jar of her homemade marmalade. She asks the policeman if he would like some.
"Of course you would. I know boys, they're always hungry."
Pete, on the other hand, is not getting anything out of Mrs. Foster. She will allow her son to talk to the police, but now is not the time. She doesn't know where he is and she needs to get back to her guests. 
Pete explains that he will have to make a report and an officer will want to talk to her son.
Mrs. Foster impatiently tells him, "Well, you have your officer drop around tomorrow."
[Alright, tomorrow it is.]
Malloy heads to the back where he finds Reed practicing his layup shot.

After Reed makes a basket, the two partners compare notes. After Malloy hears about the marmalade and the disappearing dribbler, he wants to check out the garage.

As they approach the structure, they spy a blond boy coming out of the garage through the side door. He runs when he sees the officers. Reed easily catches him as he tries to escape by climbing the fence. Once he's captured, the boy doesn't give them much information. He won't tell them his name or why he ran. 

When Mrs. Foster and her mother show up in the backyard, they both claim they don't know the boy. Malloy asks to look in the garage since a boy that was seen at two crime scenes was just seen coming out of it. Despite this evidence, Mrs. Foster won't allow it. She wants them to leave with the boy. They have their thief, they should go. If they need to see her son, they can come back tomorrow.
Pete wants to look in the garage. 
Jim wants to play a game of HORSE.
Speaking of Mrs. Foster's son, Paul... Guess who shows up to join this party in front of the garage? That's right, it's Mrs. Foster's baby boy and he's going to solve this mystery once and for all. 

"Aw, mom, why try to lie anymore? Can't you see, it's no use," he tells his mother as he strides across the lawn. 

Paul immediately confesses that he and the blond boy had been committing the burglaries and the loot is stashed in the garage. Paul's willing to admit his part in the capers because he doesn't think it's right for the blond boy to take all of the blame. His mother won't give up a key to the garage, but Paul has one of his own. He unlocks it and shows the officers all of the stolen property.

It's not all there, Mrs. Foster sold some of it.
Now that she's been exposed, Mrs. Foster cracks wide open. 
"What do you know or care what it takes to have the best of everything." 
She continues after Jim has read all of them their rights. 
"This applies to all of you. You have the right to remain silent..."
She describes her crime ring. There were six of them, "all fine boys", and she taught them how to carry out the crimes. It was easy and she would have gotten away with it if it weren't for these meddling kids.
[I'd rather have a vampire as a mother.]
After her tirade the big, bad mama does a complete 360˚ and becomes protective towards the son that she just blamed for her downfall. She advises Paul not to say anything until she gets them a lawyer. Then she blames their predicament on Paul's absentee father.

By this time Paul's sick of listening to her, he just wants to go. Jim walks Mrs. Britton and the boys out of the yard. Mrs. Foster stays behind and asks Pete for a favor; she doesn't want to see her bridge group.
"Well, I think they may feel the same way about you, Mrs. Foster."

The End

Here's what I liked best about this episode: the rapport between Pete and Jim. Sometimes their conversations in the car feel overly contrived, but in this one it really felt like we were watching two friends passing the time during their shift. So much so that I wondered if we were watching Pete and Jim or Marty and Kent. Especially when they were talking about women's fashions. I got the feeling that Kent might have been good-naturedly calling his pal Martin a "rat". 

I also loved the parts where they were throwing knowing glances at each other. Whether it was due to their acting skills or their close off-screen relationship, you really got the feeling that these two men could effectively communicate without using any words. Watching Marty and Kent in Mrs. Phillips' parlor got me thinking about their friendship and it made me a little sad knowing that Kent had to say 'goodbye' to his one-time best bud.

The rest of this episode was just OK. In the plus column, it's always a treat to see Virginia Gregg, even if she does want to shoot Jim. In the negative column, some of the dialogue during the church fight was a little confusing. 

The main story was neither a plus or a negative, it just left me flat. There wasn't much suspense to this whodunit. You knew Mrs. Foster was involved from the beginning because she was being so uncooperative. Then the ending to the case was anti-climatic. I would have preferred it if Pete or Jim broke the case by discovering some clue, but instead, Butch Patrick comes walking across the yard and announces his mother is lying. It felt like the story was being tied up and rushed due to time constraints. I would gladly trade in the church fight for a better ending on this story.

This one wasn't awful, but it wasn't great, either. I give it a rating of:

That's it for now, I won't see you guys for at least two weeks due to the holidays. I hope all of you that celebrate Christmas have a very merry one! I will see all of you after the new year with "Log 105: Elegy for a Pig". See you then!