The Fugitive: Season 3, Episode 23

The Chinese Sunset (1 Mar. 1966)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Crime | Drama
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 28 users  
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Playing a kind of Prof. Higgins to his Eliza Doolittle, Kimble schools an uneducated woman while her boyfriend works his next big score. An undercover policeman, originally shadowing the gangster boyfriend, takes an interest in Kimble.

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Title: The Chinese Sunset (01 Mar 1966)

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Laura Devon ...
Penelope Dufour
...
Eddie Slade
...
Sam
...
Fred Bragin
Sandra Warner ...
Frankie
Barry Morse ...
Lt. Philip Gerard (credit only)
Sheldon Allman ...
Orin
...
Mrs. Ball
Mary Gregory ...
Rita
Karl Held ...
Buddy
...
Gordie
Mel Ruick ...
Woody (as Melville Ruick)
Robert Brubaker ...
Cooper
Jhean Burton ...
Waitress
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Storyline

Playing a kind of Prof. Higgins to his Eliza Doolittle, Kimble schools an uneducated woman while her boyfriend works his next big score. An undercover policeman, originally shadowing the gangster boyfriend, takes an interest in Kimble.

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1 March 1966 (USA)  »

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(Westrex Recording System)

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1.33 : 1
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Narrator: [Opening Narration] The Chinese Sunset Motel, situated on the tarnished hyphen called the Sunset Strip that separates Los Angeles from Beverly Hills. For Richard Kimble, working as a man of all jobs under the alias of Jack Fickett, it is a welcome bit of limbo.
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Journey of a Thousand Miles
9 June 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

It seems at first that "Chinese Sunset" refers to the Asian-theme of the decor at the scene on the Sunset Strip, but the reference to China that reverberates throughout the story is a quotation from Lao-Tzu, "A Journey of a Thousand Miles Begins with a Single Step." This is a tale of friendship, not romance, between Kimble and a beautiful, intelligent (though uneducated) woman.

Jack Ficket (Kimble's alias) is a hotel employee who lets slip to Penelope that he went to college. Her nice but lawless boyfriend, Eddie Slade, has just gotten out of jail, and is staying in this dive while he hustles for a stake to get back into the bookmaking action he needs to support them in the style they both enjoy. Penelope can barely read or write, and asks Jack to teach her these things along with some advice on manners. She likes men like Eddie to pay her way and shower her with jewelry, but her desire to learn is the journey of a thousand miles. Kimble enjoys teaching her, and the company she provides as he wanders around the hotel cleaning up.

To improve, she reads the tale in Aesop of the cunning fox who promises to give foolish Farmer Jones back his chickens, only to eat them. This is an analogy to Eddie Slade, who hoodwinks others out of their savings, falsely promising to pay high returns later. "But the fox ATE the chickens!" says Penelope. Eddie tells Penelope everyone is hustling for money, he's just hoping to be more successful than some, and she finds this argument convincing at first.

But Kimble won't take money or loving as payment from her, which impresses upon her that all people are not hustlers--and keeps this story platonic. Kimble suggests it is more honorable to earn your way with no shortcuts. She says, "Look where it's got you," and Kimble admits she has a point. Eddie doesn't want Penelope becoming educated, but Kimble argues that Penelope's desire to grow is too powerful to be denied.

Will Penelope help her cunning fox steal chickens, or will she follow Kimble's way? One thing is certain: she's willing to bet her diamond earrings that Kimble didn't murder anyone.


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