Christie Love was a very beautiful and quite charming black woman who also happened to be a skilled undercover operative with the Los Angeles Police Department. Her smarts and skills often came in handy when posing as a prostitute, jewel thief, etc. in an effort to bring down the bad guys. Her boss was Lt. Reardon, who was replaced by Capt. Ryan. Caruso, Belmont, Valencia and Gallagher were cops with whom Christie worked. Written by
Marty McKee <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I met Teresa Graves when I worked on the tech crew of her film 'Vampira'. I never got to know her well, but I was impressed by her talent, intelligence, professionalism and (oh, too right) her considerable sex appeal. She attracted a lot of attention on 'Laugh-In' as one of the go-go dancers, sharing this duty with Goldie Hawn: the two of them frugged in skimpy bikinis while the camera tracked towards graffiti painted on their gorgeous bodies.
'Get Christie Love!' was a cop show, unusual (for the time) in featuring a black female protagonist. The scriptwriters kept Christie (Graves's role) sassy and sexy as well as brave and professional. Officer Love had a tendency to address everyone -- even criminals and total strangers -- as 'sugar', which she pronounced 'shoogah'. Anticipating a gimmick that would later be done better on 'Charlie's Angels', 'Get Christie Love!' tended to place its female protagonist in undercover assignments, thus getting her out of a boring police uniform and into all sorts of tight-fitting civvies that showed off her delicious physique. The fight scenes tended to show Christie Love using martial-arts skills rather than her fists or a gun; I found this gimmick somewhat contrived, but it certainly did give us some fine views of Teresa Graves's athletic skills and (oh, too right again) her delicious physique.
Despite her intense desire to succeed as an actress, Ms Graves turned out to be her own career's worst enemy. A devout Jehovah's Witness, she insisted on projecting her own religious values onto her role in this series. Although Christie Love was never (to my knowledge) explicitly identified as a Jehovah's Witness, Graves refused to have her character do anything which contravened her own religious beliefs. To begin with, Christie Love would never drink alcohol. (No great loss there; she's a police officer on duty.) It got worse when Graves decided that Christie Love would never lie, under any circumstances. As the character was frequently working undercover, and therefore had to pretend to be a criminal (or sympathetic to criminals), this was a serious handicap indeed. Graves's increasing restrictions on her character's behaviour led to the extreme weakening of this series, and then its demise.
The best episode of 'Get Christie Love!' is "Murder on High C". This episode not only has a good script and unusual story; it also featured some stunt casting that worked surprisingly well: in this episode, Teresa Graves was reunited with six of her 'Laugh-In' castmates: Johnny Brown, Judy Carne, Henry Gibson, Arte Johnson, Gary Owens and Jo Anne Worley. All of these comedy veterans were cast in dramatic roles, and all (except the execrable Worley) gave impressive performances. A mad bomber is terrorising the city. The audience learn early on that he's Morton Perkins: a meek loner and electronics genius, brilliantly played by Johnson. As Christie Love closes in on him, Perkins nonetheless always manages to stay one jump ahead of her. Eventually, Perkins plans to leave his latest bomb at an open-air concert, where the high note will detonate the explosive ... until Love's arrival forces Perkins to retreat with the bomb in his car. The episode's ending is extremely believable. Too bad that 'Get Christie Love!' didn't feature more episodes of this calibre.
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