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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The second part of this episode focuses on Porter's try to capture the
bad guy who got away in first his boat, and then his submarine. Flipper
soon returns to tell the boys that he found the boat. Ulla is there
locked up and Porter assures her he will be going after Al Bardeman
after he drops her off at the island with Bud.
Sandy can't be that much older than bud (maybe three or four years), and I find is strange that Porter chose to let his teenage son ride with him into danger. Granted, he needed some help but why did he bring his own son instead of Ulla who does work for the government? It just seems a bit strange to me.
Burt Reynolds, I'm sure, enjoyed playing the bad guy with a gun. And of course his question makes one laugh: "What is that? Some kind of trained fish?"
This is the second part of a two part episode focusing around the
hijacking of the family vacation. Aside from the interest modern
audiences would have in seeing Burt Reynolds in this cameo but
convincing role, the real highlight is the stunningly beautiful island
they have become stranded on. The location of "Flipper" in the Florida
Keys is one of the various reasons why it was so popular. For the Ricks
family to have such deserted paradises so close to them was part of the
allure of "Flipper" to me as a child - I was jealous of the lifestyle
Bud and Sandy had. I'm sure its all so built up, commercial and crowded
now that it doesn't have the same wilderness feel that was such an
integral part of the show.
This episode shows how independent and reasonably well prepared these teen-aged boys were for the wilderness. They can fish and take care of themselves whilst their Dad takes off to retrieve the stolen vessel. Most modern city boys of the age portrayed would freak out and not cope. The boys are also used to the law enforcement aspect of their Dad's job and seem to cope well with dramatic violent incidents that involve the pulling of guns and knives.
Finally I've often wondered why the scrip writers did not explore a romantic connection between Porter and Ulla. Various episodes feature a number of eligible and beautiful women in Porter's life that in a more modern show likely would've progressed to romance. Perhaps it was seen as too much of a distraction from the central Flipper and Ricks family rescuing/assisting story lines.
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