Chico isn't too pleased to receive a visit from the father he never knew, having been told for years that Gilberto Rodriguez was dead.

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Cast

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Gilberto Rodriguez
Jerry Hausner ...
Maynard Jennings
Wyatt Johnson ...
Chauffeur
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Storyline

Chico isn't too pleased to receive a visit from the father he never knew, having been told for years that Gilberto Rodriguez was dead.

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Comedy

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4 February 1977 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

This was the first episode to air after the death of Freddie Prinze. Louie, worried that Chico might go back to Mexico to work with his father, comments to Ed, "We could lose him forever." In the original broadcast, the closing credits contained a trembling voice-over from Jack Albertson thanking everyone for their sympathy. See more »

Quotes

Gilbero Rodriguez: Why didn't you come to my hotel?
Chico: Why didn't you come to my fourth birthday party? Or my fourteenth? Or my twenty-fourth?
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User Reviews

 
The legendary Cesar Romero as Chico's father
23 July 2016 | by (Youngstown,Ohio) – See all my reviews

"Chico's Padre" is remembered for the surprise casting of legendary Latino actor Cesar Romero, his career resurgence as BATMAN'S Joker fresh in the audience's memory, made all the more poignant by being the show's first broadcast since the tragic death of star Freddie Prinze. Private investigator Maynard Jennings (Jerry Hausner) arrives at the garage to inquire as the whereabouts of a certain Francisco Rodriguez, and when Chico recognizes the photo of himself as a 3 year old in a sailor suit, is told that the detective's client is Gilberto Rodriguez (Cesar Romero), his long lost father. All his life his family had told him repeatedly that his padre was dead, either from a disease or going down with a sinking ship. Chico refuses to accompany Gilberto's chauffeur (Wyatt Johnson) to his Beverly Royals hotel suite, requesting that the old man come to the barrio to see his son (Louie concludes that this looks like a 'Mexican stand off!'). Chico's foster father Ed Brown gives Gilberto a warmer welcome than his offspring, offering a toast to Chico's three years at the garage. Gilberto understands the bitterness, confiding that his wife Maria's family considered him dead from the day he married her. Maria's mother wanted her daughter to marry a prince, not a pauper, eloping to wed in Mexico, where he worked a fishing boat by day, studying to make something more of himself by night. Maria wanted her son to be an American citizen, so the poverty stricken Gilberto had to steal the only vehicle in his village, meaning that Francisco Rodriguez was born in a police car! Serving a two year sentence after returning the car, Maria's family disowned Chico's father, who hired a succession of detectives ever since to learn where to find his son. Gilberto has gone from a simple fisherman to owning a fleet of trawlers, offering Chico the opportunity to make a better life for himself in his father's employ south of the border (this was the plot point that explained Chico's absence in the season's last three episodes, visiting Gilberto in Mexico). An eavesdropping Ed Brown wants Chico to accept, but loyalty cannot be denied, Chico perfectly happy to remain with his foster father, only now buying presents for two on Father's Day. Cesar Romero made for perfect casting indeed, as charming and dignified as one would expect, a sympathetic character victimized by fate. The warmth shared between fathers and son is a sad reminder of just how much would be lost so quickly, but for once a third season entry rose to the level of previous episodes.


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