This is the 10th episode of the 39 episode run of the 1954 to 1956 series, ADVENTURES OF THE FALCON. Film noir icon Charles McGraw headlines as Mike Waring, an agent of the U.S. Government. The series follows McGraw as he travels the world putting the kibosh on various criminals and foreign agents.
In this one, McGraw is sent to Rome to get the goods on mobster, Richard Benedict. Benedict is suspected of working with a ring of smugglers shipping industrial diamonds to the Reds. McGraw has a meeting set up with a man, William Tannen, from the Italian Secret Service.
This meeting goes sideways when Tannen is found at the meeting suffering from severe blood loss. Seen in the area of the knifing is none other than Mister Benedict. McGraw follows the man to a church, which Benedict enters. McGraw is sure that Benedict is using the church as a hideout.
The next day McGraw pays the church a visit to talk with the priest. He tells the man, Gregory Gaye, that he knows Benedict from the States. Gaye tells McGraw that Benedict has seen the light and now works for a winery owned by some monks. McGraw does not buy this for a minute. He decides though that he better look into the matter.
He heads to his hotel to grab a cab and runs into old friend, June Vincent. Vincent is a reporter always on the look for a good story. She figures if the "Falcon"(McGraw) is in town, there must be something big on the hop. She decides to follow McGraw when he heads to the winery.
McGraw pretends to be a wine importer from the U.S. looking for a new brand to sell back home. The man in charge, Charles Lung, gives McGraw the tour etc and then blows him off. Lung's number two, Philip Van Zandt, now shows. It seems that the two are really behind the smuggling racket. They ship the stones inside bottles of wine. Zandt is also the one who had really killed Italian cop, Tannen.
Needless to say, now reporter Vincent arrives and spills the beans about McGraw really being a U.S. Federal agent. Zandt is soon on his way to give McGraw the same ventilation treatment he gave Tannen. It is only good luck and a solid right cross that saves McGraw from the morgue.
McGraw pays a return visit to the winery for another chat with Lung and company. Guns are drawn and it is only the timely arrival of Benedict that saves McGraw. It seems that Benedict has turned over a new leaf. He just wants to be on the straight and narrow from now on.
Another quick, and to the point, half hour's bit of entertainment. It is a sharp looking episode with former big screen helmsman, Seymour Friedman at the directing controls. Friedman worked mostly on b-films for Columbia etc. His work includes the noir, CHINATOWN AT MIDNIGHT, CUSTOMS AGENT, ESCAPE ROUTE and LOAN SHARK.
The director of photography was Kenneth Peach. Peach shot hundreds of television episodes from series such as, BOSTON BLACKIE, MR. and MRS NORTH, THE NEW ADVENTURES OF CHARLIE CHAN, MICHAEL SHAYNE, THE OUTER LIMITS and MAN FROM UNCLE. His film work includes the 50's sci-fi classic. IT! THE TERROR FROM BEYOND SPACE.
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