(TV Series)

(1977)

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8/10
You Beth Your Life
zsenorsock28 December 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I was going to give this episode a 10 just for all the great scenes with the fetching Beth Davenport (Gretchen Corbett) in a negligee, but unfortunately the script and casting lowered this rather serious episode to an 8.

Beth Davenport is defending a football player named Davy Woodhill (Howard McGillin) from a charge of armed robbery and murder. She's asked Jim to find the one alibi witness who can clear Davy--a married woman named Doreen Carpenter (Sondra Blake) who was with Davy the night of the killing. In the meantime a creepy psycho stalker is throwing Beth off her game by sending her dirty books, movies, and making vaguely harassing phone calls. Jim wants to find the creep, but Beth insists he continue the search for Carpenter at all costs.

There's some nice tension between Jim and Beth at the top of this episode. He's been "off fishing" and hasn't been available. Both Corbett and Garner play this very well with an eye towards their on again off again relationship. Corbett gets a lot to do in this episode and besides wearing a negligee, gets to be terrified and do a little investigating on her own. A great episode for we Beth Davenport admirers.

Although the episode is mostly serious, Garner has a funny scene with a talent agent as he tries to find Carpenter through her son, a bad child actor. Joe Santos also gets a funny moment as he becomes the department spokesperson for the Woodhull investigation. Angel is referenced as a source in this episode but does not appear. Norman Bartold, who plays the judge, makes the last of his four "Rockford" appearances.

The problems with this episode lie in the writing and the casting. First off, Rockford figures out the crime fairly early, so there's really no surprise when he turns out to be right. And then why for instance, does Woodhull admit to Beth what he's been doing once he's acquitted of the crime? Why not just shut up? And what's the idea of bringing Carpenter in only to have her shot before she can testify? Both McGillin as Woodhill and Blake as Carpenter are wholly unconvincing. McGillin in particular comes off as a Greg Marmalard reject from the Omegas in "Animal House".

Still its nice to have an episode feature Beth, and the ending shows there still may be something in the Rockford-Davenport relationship.
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nice tackle, Jim
stones782 March 2011
Warning: Spoilers
This is another football themed episode in which Rockford must help Beth clear her client accused of murder, and also help figure out who's been tormenting her. She's receiving strange phone calls and odd gifts, and she can't figure out who or why, yet it's hurting her concentration revolving around her client's serious case. The suspect is a star college running back(Rockford mentions this)who's accused of gunning down a club bartender in a botched robbery; the club owner is played by Joseph Mascolo, who I recognized from All in the Family and Jaws 2. You might also perhaps recognize Bill Baldwin(jury foreman)from the Rocky films, who has a brief cameo. This episode has a tinge of horror(to me, at least)when Beth ventures to an old house, and when she goes upstairs, she finds pictures of her all over the wall and it naturally freaks her out as she flees the house. Jim and Beth do have nice chemistry, but this episode probably had a little too much Beth in it, in my opinion, and is better as a secondary character, but I digress. Towards the end, Jim makes a nice "tackle" on the coach who was in cahoots with the suspect, and actually had bought off the witness and kills her(in broad daylight)wearing a ski mask as she's walking with Jim to the authorities. It turns out that Beth's client was actually guilty, and was also involved with the phone calls and the gifts in order to get her thrown off the case, and have a mistrial declared. It seems slightly unrealistic for this conclusion to occur, and an awful risk for the guilty suspect to take. Not a bad episode, but nowhere near the best of the bunch.
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4/10
Beth Davenport harassed
bkoganbing9 January 2015
Jim Rockford's regular attorney Beth Davenport hires her favorite PI to locate a missing witness Sondra Blake for her client who is being tried for murder. Howard McGillin and several others held up a favorite watering hole and McGillin shot and killed a bartender during the course of the robbery. But his services will be needed as Gretchen Corbett is being systematically harassed and stalked during the trial.

There is a connection with the stalking and the trial but what exactly it is for James Garner to find out. I think the writers were really reaching with this plot.

Not one of the better stories.
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