Rod Taylor headlines this 1960-61 series as a newsman who is stationed in Hong Kong. Taylor is constantly in trouble with various shady types who are always involving him in their troubles. It usually takes several round of fisticuffs, a dead body or two and a gun battle before things get settled. This is the 17th episode.
This one opens in a Hong Kong casino with Barney Philips counting up his winnings for the evening, $50,000. With him is, Antoinette Bower and Dean Hearns. Hearns is a down on his luck business type. He makes money by bringing visiting tourists to the casino to be fleeced. He gets a cut of the casino winnings. The problem tonight is that the mark won.
Bower, the ex of Hearns was there for window dressing. She knows nothing of Hearans' deal with the casino. When Hearns attempts to get Bower to help him keep Philips at the casino, she refuses. Hearns gives her a sharp slap which has Philips rushing to her defence. Hearns give Philips a quick one, two and floors him. He then storms off. Bower has already left the casino.
Philips, once he has recovered, heads out into the night to grab a cab. A man, James Hong, steps out of the shadows and knifes Philips in the stomach. Hong is interrupted by a passerby before he can pilfer the dead man's wallet. He fades back into the night before his face is seen. The Police are summoned and Hong Kong Police Inspector, Lloyd Bochner is soon on the scene.
Bochner looks about the area and calls in Detective Michael David to head the case. David has just returned to duty after a suspension for brutality. Bochner warns David to tow the line, or he is off the force. Of course Dean Hearns is the number one suspect. David pays Hearns a call at his apartment. Hearns denies knowing anything about the murder. He then makes the error of throwing a punch at the volatile David. David's response is a fist to the side of Hearns' head. Hearns stumbles backwards and cracks his skull open on the wall. He is dead.
Once David cools off, he stuffs the body in a handy closet, then returns to headquarters. He tells Bochner that he could not find Hearns at his apartment. Bochner has him go back and watch the flat in case Hearns does return. David returns to the apartment and carts Hearns out past the sleeping doorman and dumps the body in his car. Now it is off to the dock where he dumps the stiff in the drink. Then, quickly back to Hearns' to clean up any unneeded mess.
David now takes a hat and trench-coat from the dead man's closet. He calls a cab, pulls the hat down to cover his face and exits making sure he wakes the dozing doorman. He takes the cab to the train station and buys a ticket out of town. David figures he has laid a pretty good false trail.
The stiff though is soon discovered. The Police interview the ex, Bower and her father Liam Redmond. Redmond always disliked Hearns and has been heard threatening him. Inspector Bochner suggests that the last incident at the casino set Redmond off. Detective David of course steers the case in this direction, planting evidence at Redmond's home.
David however overplays his hand and Bochner soon sees through David's moves. He calls David on the matter, but David asks Bochner what evidence does he have? Nothing concrete Bochner admits. David smiles and returns to his office. This convinces Bochner that David is definitely guilty of Hearns' killing.
Bochner calls in an actress he knows, Maria McClay, and asks for her help. Later that evening, McClay pays a visit to David at his apartment. She tells David that she is the maid at the Redmond household. McClay informs David that she wants $1,000 from him. David asks her why he should pay her anything. Mclay answers, "I saw you hide evidence at the house. I think $1,000 is a small price to pay for my silence."
David does not take kindly to this idea and goes for McClay's throat. Of course Bochner and the boys in blue are handy and quickly put the grab on David.
Series headliner, Rod Taylor, is only on screen for the start and finish of the episode.
This entertaining episode is based on the novel Night Cry by William L. Stuart. Stuart also wrote the novel, Where the Sidewalk Ends which was turned into a first rate film-noir.
Long time television man, Walter Doniger is at the directing controls. Doniger was nominated for a Golden Globe for writing the screenplay for the film-noir, ROPE OF SAND.
The cinematography of this series is very good with various Oscar nominated and winner types handling the lensing duties. This particular episode has the one time Oscar nominated Frank V. Philips at the wheel. (b/w)
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