Combat!: Season 2, Episode 28

The Short Day of Private Putnam (24 Mar. 1964)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Drama | War
8.3
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 33 users  
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A new squad member is aggressive and naive - because he's really only 15. Orville Putnam's actual age is discovered by a knowing French bartender he puts his unsubtle moves on, to impress ... See full summary »

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Title: The Short Day of Private Putnam (24 Mar 1964)

The Short Day of Private Putnam (24 Mar 1964) on IMDb 8.3/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
...
...
...
Orville Putnam
Jack Hogan ...
Conlan Carter ...
Doc
Pierre Jalbert ...
Dick Peabody ...
Tom Lowell ...
Robert Sampson ...
Harvey
Lilyan Chauvin ...
Fauvette
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Storyline

A new squad member is aggressive and naive - because he's really only 15. Orville Putnam's actual age is discovered by a knowing French bartender he puts his unsubtle moves on, to impress his fellow infantrymen. Orville swears Fauvette to secrecy, but then the squad is ordered to recon a treacherous hill whose treetops are stuffed with German snipers. Sgt. Saunders understands that Orville is covering up for his lack of combat experience, but doesn't know the whole truth about the orphaned teen. Written by David Stevens

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Genres:

Action | Drama | War

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Release Date:

24 March 1964 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
The Putnam and Saunders Show
6 July 2014 | by (Mesa, AZ USA) – See all my reviews

Short Day of Private Putman is a story of a green recruit who lacks the necessary maturity to deal with his squad. And for good reason - he does not belong; an incongruity and anachronism slipped through the cracks.

Private Orville Putman (excellently played by Beau Bridges) pitifully tries to be a seasoned veteran, but it's an act of futility.

Fauvette (well played by Lilyan Chauvin) has some excellent dialog with "Put" and becomes his first reality check along the way.

The rest of the squad get the picture in short order and realize he's green. And Put does not disappoint in proving it out. Putnam and Saunders have excellent on screen chemistry and dialog while Caje is genuinely frustrated and projects it well on screen. In usual form, Kirby is spontaneously sarcastic in a humorous way about Put's exploits.

There's a lot of action and director McEveety does an excellent job with his specialty. I'm only critical of a couple of scenes whereby the German snipers are pitifully poor shots. I would have added two more squad members and lost them in the fray. It would have been well worth it for believability purposes.

Screen writers Esther & Bob Mitchell did a fine job with this one, very believable and even funny in parts. A good analogy highlighting Put in combat would be rookie pilot Lieutenant May running from the Red Baron; the same exact inspiration applies. The ending was beautifully written and well applied to Put the "botanist"; and I vividly remember it from when I was 8 years old having seen the original broadcast. It's fun after 50 years to see it all over again.


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