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The Tale of the Phone Police 

Jake O'Brien loves to make prank phone calls. Unfortunately, people who mess with the telephone get taken away by the sinister phone police and once they catch you, you will never have existed.

Director:

Jean-Marie Comeau

Writers:

D.J. MacHale (original creator), David Preston
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Cast

Episode cast overview:
Marcus Turner ... Jake O'Brien
Ryan Kent Ryan Kent ... Chris
Marlowe Dawn Marlowe Dawn ... Annie O'Brien
Nancy Wood Nancy Wood ... Receptionist
Griffith Brewer Griffith Brewer ... Phone Clerk
Richard Jutras ... Pizza Delivery Guy
Jason Alisharan Jason Alisharan ... Frank
Ross Hull ... Gary
Raine Pare-Coull Raine Pare-Coull ... Betty Ann
Jodie Resther ... Kiki
Daniel DeSanto ... Tucker
JoAnna Garcia Swisher ... Sam (as Joanna Garcia)
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Storyline

Jake O'Brien loves to make prank phone calls. Unfortunately, people who mess with the telephone get taken away by the sinister phone police and once they catch you, you will never have existed.

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Certificate:

TV-Y7 | See all certifications »
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Details

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 January 1994 (Canada) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

YTV See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(52 episodes)

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Was the basis for the 'Weird Al' Yankovic song "Phony Calls", a parody of TLC's "Waterfalls". See more »

Goofs

The address of Jake's house is shown as 382, but when the pizza delivery man realized he's at the wrong address, he says it's 328. See more »

Quotes

Annie O'Brien: [to Jake and Chris] What are you two yams talking about?
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Soundtracks

Are You Afraid of the Dark? Theme
Arranged and produced by Ray Fabi
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User Reviews

 
Crank Busters
20 August 2018 | by hellraiser7See all my reviews

This is also a non-favorite of mine but I do enjoy watching it sometimes. It's once again a tale which is common in horror on mortals tempting fate and unfortunately meeting it. What make this episode is just on the premise alone how an everyday convenience can turn against you; it's also based on the scurry notion on the other guy on the line is not one you want to talk to much like with the horror films "When a Stranger Calls" and "Scream" that made use of the phone; but also simply the subconscious fear of being at the wrong end of authority.

I really like the Phone Police whom really are a menacing force, their kinda like the Men in Black as they operate covertly. This organization takes extreme measures toward anyone that abuses the power of commination technology, but also erase all evidence of that person's existence if captured.

We see the two friends, which I'll admit is one weakness of the episode, it's hard for me to really buy them as friends as Jake seems to be a real bad influence on Chris let alone at times kind of a blowhole toward him. But maybe that's part of the point of the episode, from the empierce it probably taught Jake to be a little more appreciative and respectful that he has a friend to help him.

Jake, we see is an addict toward the phone as he doesn't know when to say when on crank calls which has made him develop this stupid mindset that he's the best at getting away with anything but little does he know his streak is about to end when he decides to tempt fate by calling the number of the imprisoned crank caller Billy Baxter and finding the source of his number. And he of course takes the bait hook, line and sinker. Really like the look of the whole Phone Police base which is just dark and foreboding as there is hardly any light and it is just dank and decrepit adding to the oppressive atmosphere of the place, that just rings no escape.

Chris, I think he's a solid protagonist whom really is a good guy the only problem is he's let himself be influenced by the wrong people. It really isn't in him to be bad where Jake talks him into making a crank call which he just can't do very well. However, I really like how cleaver Chris is, as he has to use some covert communications tactics to trick the police into dropping their guard giving him the opening he needs to spring Jake out. Just seeing him work just show how he truly is better on his own, without Pete around.

There is one moment when Jake says something really stupid, "I didn't do anything wrong." I thought, "Um, yeah you did you committed fraud which is a felony, so you better fix your receiver." But I like that Chris does help him all the same despite the fact Jake might not be totally worth saving, Chris is really doing this because he believes the punishment doesn't entirely fit the crime.

The suspense is solid as it becomes an escapist thriller, I remember being on the edge of my seat as we are constantly hopping they find a way out as every twist and turn seems to be blocked and even out at the open they are relentlessly being pursued.

If the episode has a moral that is don't tempt fate, you never truly know who's on the other side of the line.

Rating: 3 stars


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