On vacation in the Tetons, Jessica encounters jewel thieves and a man from her Army vet host's past.

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Luisa (as Vaitiare Bandera)
Brandon Douglas ...
Pete Levering
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Howard Levering
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Ellen Levering
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Greta Bayer
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Lloyd Nichols (as Fredric Lane)
Ben Lemon ...
Sheriff Jed Bullock
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Arthur Wainwright
Katherine Olsen ...
Marla Hastings
James Victor ...
Juan
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Harley Foote
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On vacation in the Tetons, Jessica encounters jewel thieves and a man from her Army vet host's past.

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Crime | Drama | Mystery

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25 February 1996 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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In the opening scene, Ellen Levering mistakenly refers to Greta as Ms. Bayers (with an 's'). See more »

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"Neither Rain, nor Snow, nor Sleet, nor Hail Fail to Bail the Pail of Wail from Jail"
19 February 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Brandon Douglas first appears on "MSW" in a juvenile role, as Todd, one of three pupils of Wenton Academy, in "Night of the Headless Horseman" (#3.11). Nine seasons afterward, in "Track of a Soldier" (#12.18) Brandon reaches young adult status, as he plays Pete Levering, the step-son of the owner of Starcrest Lodge, and the caregiver of Soldier, his faithful Black Labrador/German Shepherd type canine, who leads Pete to the body and then must help to rescue him from false arrest.

Ellen Levering (Linda Kelsey) operates Starcrest Lodge, located near the base of the Grand Teton Mountains, in western Wyoming. A widowed Howard Levering (Wings Hauser) has married Ellen, giving her a step-son, Pete Levering (Brandon Douglas), with whom she attempts to nurture family bonds.

Soldier (Himself) keeps Pete in trouble with Teton County Sheriff Jed Bullock (Ben Lemon), as ranchers and farmers falsely accuse Soldier of destroying their livestock. When Sheriff Jed Bullock gives Pete an ultimatum to destroy Soldier, Colonel Howard Levering sides against his son and beloved pet. So, Pete must scrutinize Soldier's every move to protect his innocence.

Luisa (Vaitiare Bandera), Aldo (Tony Devon) and Juan (James Victor) serve on the staff at Starcrest Lodge, Luisa as an efficient maid, Aldo as a driver, and Juan as a loyal assistant, who had served as a military Sergeant in the battalion of Colonel Howard Levering, who now plans to run for a seat in the Wyoming Senate, representing Teton County.

Ellen receives guests, who begin to arrive for a week's vacation at Starcrest Lodge, including financier Arthur Wainwright (Stephen Macht) and his mistress, Marla Hastings (Katherine Olsen), and her ex-partner, Lloyd Nichols (Fredric Lehne), and his ex-partner, Greta Bayer (Audrey Landers), who befriends Arthur's assistant, Harley Foote (Michael Zelniker), when Harley's doctor diagnoses a mysterious rare disease, which could number his days.

Finally, Ellen receives her dear old friend Jessica Fletcher (Angela Lansbury), who suffers from writer's burn-out and needs to bask in the Grand Tetons to rejuvenate her stamina.

Greta Bayer encourages Harley Foote to live his final days to the fullest, by accompanying her on a shopping trip into Jackson, instead of doing Arthur's bidding, while Arthur enjoys his time with Marla. Greta should know because she's been widowed from a wealthy husband, who left her a $two million non-set diamond, which she carries around in a tiny pouch.

Greta had invited Lloyd Nichols to share her NYC apartment and her life in the aftermath, and now he returns in pursuit of Greta's diamond, which his other ex, Marla Hastings, also trails, and which Luisa discovers frozen into an ice cube tray in the freezer of Greta's refrigerator while she refreshes the room, as Lloyd discovers while hiding in the corner, after breaking in while Greta and Harley are busy shopping.

Lloyd also shares a past with Colonel Howard Levering, as he threatens to derail Howard's state Senate campaign, by revealing the facts about an incident which claimed the life of Lloyd's brother Timothy Nichols during maneuvers on Wasatch River, under the command of Colonel Levering.

Jessica does what she can to champion young love when Ellen discovers Howard's secret, when Arthur receives a call from his wife, and when Greta discovers that Harley's condition may not prove life-threatening after all, when he flies off to Cheyenne to consult another physician.

But one night, when Soldier sneaks off into the forest, Jessica hears his howling, as Pete sneaks off to trail Soldier, who discovers a body with Howard's bloody Army knife beside, which Pete retrieves and returns to its showcase, without wiping it clean, and subsequently gets arrested when Sheriff Jed Bullock pieces together the evidence.

Soldier assists Jessica in an investigation of their own, to prove Pete's innocence, as the loose diamond is also missing. But Soldier manages to retrieve other bits of evidence from the forest, to deliver to Jessica, to figure whodunit, along the "Track of a Soldier."

This episode represents the second of two "MSW" guest roles each for Audrey Landers, Brandon Douglas and Fredric Lehne, the third of three for Linda Kelsey and Michael Zelniker, the fourth of four for Wings Hauser, and the fifth of five "MSW's" for Stephen Macht.


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