Miami Vice: Season 3, Episode 8

Better Living Through Chemistry (14 Nov. 1986)

TV Episode  |  TV-14  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 131 users  
Reviews: 1 user

Tubbs' attempts to stop synthetic cocaine of the highest purity from hitting the streets are threatened by his ex-NYPD-partner, whose career was destroyed by Tubbs' testimony regarding a confused shooting.



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Title: Better Living Through Chemistry (14 Nov 1986)

Better Living Through Chemistry (14 Nov 1986) on IMDb 7.9/10

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Episode cast overview:
Detective Gina Calabrese (credit only)
Olivia Brown ...
Detective Trudy Joplin (credit only)
Clarence Batisse
Wango Mack
Nelson Villamor ...
Henry Penny
Skip Jacobson ...
Biker (as Skip Jakobsen)
John Fox Dilanna ...


When Crockett and Tubbs go undercover to get a drug dealer, a man who works for the dealer, blows Tubbs cover. They discover that the man is Tubbs' former partner from New York. Years ago both of them were involved in a shoot out, and Tubbs' partner shot someone whom he claimed was armed but Tubbs couldn't corroborate his claim which would lead to his dismissal. Written by

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Release Date:

14 November 1986 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


When the girlfriend is talking to Clarence after Tubbs had talked to her, she says the gun was hidden in an alley. When Tubbs had earlier interviewed the prisoner about the gun, he said it was hidden in an air conditioning vent. See more »


Written by Chuck Río
Performed by The Champs
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User Reviews

Is Tubbs safe from his ex-partner?
1 May 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

This episode opens in a nightclub where Crockett and Tubbs are undercover trying to get close to a dealer who claims to be able to supply cheap artificial cocaine made by his personal chemist; things go wrong though when the club's DJ suddenly blows Tubbs cover. It turns out he was a former New York cop, Clarence Batisse, who was kicked of the force when Tubbs wouldn't back up his claim that a suspect he shot had been armed. With Tubbs' cover blown Crockett must continue the undercover work alone. This isn't helped when there is a shootout at the club and Clarence kidnaps the chemist and Izzy. His plan is to make his boss think the chemist was kidnapped by a rival and take the ransom money but things are complicated when the chemist tests his product and promptly dies! Clarence thinks can trick him just long enough to get the money... and set up Tubbs to get revenge!

This was another quality episode with plenty of action and a nice little twist. The story was good enough to overlook the unlikelihood of Tubbs' ex-partner just happening to work in the nightclub the deal was taking place in. Martin Ferrero continues to be amusing without being annoying as comedy relief character Izzy... clearly the creators made the right choice keeping him as the comedy character rather than the annoying Noogie! Setting much of the episode in a 'biker' nightclub provided a good excuse to have underdressed women gyrating on motorbikes and to give Steppenwolf's classic 'Born to be Wild' another airing along with Peter Gabriel's 'Sledgehammer'.

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