A New York City budget crisis results in "last hired, first fired" for a friend of Kojak's who had recently joined the police force. As the rookie's bills mount, he winds up in debt to a ...
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A New York City budget crisis results in "last hired, first fired" for a friend of Kojak's who had recently joined the police force. As the rookie's bills mount, he winds up in debt to a numbers-running gang as well and joins it, secretly feeding information to Kojak from inside the gang. Written by
Former cop Michael Durrell starts out like a big hero, but soon enough gets himself in hot water. He's got debts to pay and he's big time into a shylock who has a few other sidelines as well like numbers and drug dealing. But Durrell does have friends as he's a former cop who has been laid off in one of those city budget crises that faced New York City in the Seventies.
Durrell is working two jobs to support wife Jenny O'Hara and their toddler, driving a cab and being a nightman at a funeral home. His hero status comes when he apprehends someone trying to rob him on his job. But as it turns out the robber was into the same shylock who wants Durrell to alter his testimony so the robber is free and he can be killed to make an example. After that it's easy to get Durrell making deliveries for him in his cab, especially as his debts mount up and his wife starts having health issues.
As a former civil servant ever conscious of the medical benefits I had and the regular paycheck coming in for 23 years at the same job, I can sympathize with what Durrell was going through. So many of us do live from paycheck to paycheck and those health benefits that come with civil service make working there very attractive. As Kevin Dobson says to Telly Savalas if he was being squeezed the way Durrell is he might be forced into doing the same thing. A position that Kojak is most sympathetic to.
A nice episode with a great performance by Michael Durrell as a man being squeezed at both ends.
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