The A-Team: Season 2, Episode 20

Harder Than It Looks (21 Feb. 1984)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Crime
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 94 users  
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A hostage with Cupid's version of Stockholm syndrome.

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Title: Harder Than It Looks (21 Feb 1984)

Harder Than It Looks (21 Feb 1984) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
...
...
...
...
Lori Lethin ...
Jennifer Teasdale
...
Marcus
Frank Annese ...
Strickland
Michael Prince ...
Warren Teasdale
Steven Keats ...
Ramon
Cherie Michan ...
Katherine
...
Tony
Vince McKewin ...
Big Man fighting B.A.
Suzanne Albershardt ...
Laura
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Storyline

A business tycoon hires the A-team to rescue his daughter who is held hostage by the terrorist GLA. When they get to her, she is less then cooperative; they think it's just Stockholm syndrome, but soon find out her father cares less about her then the $500,000 ransom they failed to bring back as promised, and she was in love with one of them, Marcus, even before the GLA leader trapped her. And it gets worse again once they learn of the GLA's other criminal intention... Written by KGF Vissers

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21 February 1984 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

Murdock says "I've heard about cases like these where the victim is assimilated into the group and then becomes sympathetic with the kidnappers' cause". This psychological phenomenon is known as "Stockholm syndrome". See more »

Quotes

Murdock: The Colonel really bends my mind out of shape, you know.
"B.A." Baracus: Man, if you're mind was bend out of shape, it'd be straight, fool.
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References Godzilla (1954) See more »

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User Reviews

This Plan Came Together Perfectly !

Now this is the best of what this show can ever deliver : a good mix of action and comedy, or simply : absolute fun.

In recent interview, on line, with Dwight Schultz he wished if only the writers of the first season wrote the rest also. He was referring to (Stephen J. Cannell) and (Frank Lupo) the creators of the show, whom wrote its most vivid episodes, then both of them left writing for it (except occasionally) and attended to be its executive producers.

Here at the second season, and after some tiresome episodes looked nearly the same, Mr. Frank Lupo takes over the writer's seat to provide the show with what it needed, and to provide us also with what we needed.

You can sense clearly at the smart, carefully done, teaser that this will be different one.. A hot one. There is clever brevity at the start; the voice over of the kidnapper to sum up the whole case, then cutting the things that became boringly repetitive (bringing Murdock out of the hospital, the matter of disguised Hannibal saying "you've just hired the A-Team"..), there are 3 missions already (to fit 3 cuts to commercials), unstoppable action, repeated catchphrase embodied the team's weariness (Piecea cake !), an evil match for Mr. T, a chance for Hannibal (or rather George Peppard) to jump heroically over a cliff into the ocean with many bullets around him, a James Bond situation of ticker bomb at the climax, and finally a line said by Mr. T which assures how B.A admires and respects Hannibal that ends the episode and maybe trying to end the rumors about the tension between Peppard and T behind the camera (that happened to be so right and harder than it looks at the moment !), or at least to distract it, or even to deliberately erase it in the drama so it doesn't effect the unity and the credibility of the A-Team.

Cool plan that's (Lupo) managed to master, with the rest of the team, wonderfully; (Dwight Schultz) is crying after knowing the matter of the dam's bomb, and just observe well when he reveals his mask to the evil guys he says "You Would Never Believe it" the same way it had been said in (The Guns of Navarone - 1961), I loved that somebody, else me, remembers that line and the way it was said to impersonate it. I loved also the shoot when B.A, Face, and Murdock show up suddenly with their guns from the back seat of the van, wow.. I bet a lot of boys just adored this one and imitated it with each other after.

Look at Peppard as Hannibal, he was on the jazz ; fighting, smiling, delivering punchlines, smocking his cigar all at once ! (And yes, I didn't recognize him as the dam's guard !). Actually this man was dealing with the unserious show very seriously. I think he demanded the success so badly, and when he got it, he feared of losing it, and tried to keep it strongly, to be a mega-star in a TV super-hit, I'm just trying to understand why he used to be abrupt behind the camera (something that you can read, hear, learn about through a lot of sources) for any other reason except being just Hollywood star with a bad temper. By the way, re-watch carefully the last scene (at the palace) to observe well how Dwight Schultz and Dirk Benedict just steal the camera wittily while Peppard is giving his speech, I believe that was some kind of cute revenge on something nasty Peppard had done to them off camera or in front of it !

At every episode the producers had established rule : there must be a hot girl as slight bright sight (something Peppard really hated) because as a show was made by guys and viewed by women, they wanted to collect also all what guys love. Here the evil girl was hot though it's never The A-Team to explore her hotness or expose it much.. And maybe that's one of the reasons, else its cartoonish violence, that pushes a lot of people to call this show as childish.

Save the very cheesy line of Hannibal at the end "we're like socks, you can put us through rough wash once, but you'll never use us again !!" (or something as bad as this !) It's one of the best 45 min B movies that the American TV used to bewitch us back in the 1980s as pure entertainment nearly disappeared in next decades.

At last… Why I think that nobody will ever care to read a review about an episode of The A-Team?


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