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All in the Family: The Elevator Story (1972)
Season 2, Episode 14
How did this get past the censors?
23 October 2018
This incredibly funny episode is so politically incorrect, I have to wonder how it was allowed to air? There's no way it would air by today's standards, right or wrong, but thankfully graced our television sets back in 1972. I'd probably call this my favorite episode, as there were several notable faces, such as Hector Elizondo, Roscoe Lee Browne, and Eileen Brennan, and they all had memorable lines, and added their talents to this wonderful story. The gist has Archie, Edith, Gloria, and Mike celebrating Edith's birthday at a restaurant, although Archie discovers that an insurance bill needs to be paid by that night, and he must rush to a local office, which also happens to be in the same building as the restaurant. He takes the elevator where all these characters are, and soon after, the elevator gets stuck between floors, and chaos ensues. Some of the lines uttered, not just by Archie, may be a tad politically incorrect for sensitive ears, but they are just too funny to ignore. Perhaps the only downer for me was Edith getting publicly drunk, and while it was cute at first, it just seemed a bit forced after that. Other than that small mention, this is simply a great elevator ride.
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Archie Bunker's Place: The Business Manager (1981)
Season 3, Episode 2
How the mighty have fallen
20 September 2018
Let me preface this review by mentioning that "All in the Family" is one of my favorite shows(most seasons, but not all), so it pains me to have to write a negative piece on the "sequel", but there's no getting around it. The one-liners are tired by now, and Archie's complaints in the bar don't work as well as they do in the Bunker's home, at least in my eyes. Anyway, this unfunny episode has the bar in financial trouble for whatever reason, and Archie's lawyer insists Archie hire a business manager, played by a wooden Steve Hendrickson, to help sort things out and save the bar from being forced to shut down. A few interesting tidbits worth mentioning is that Hendrickson didn't have much of an acting career after this show, although he was brought back in the next episode the very next week, both were in 1981, and his next acting credit wasn't until 1988, and hardly anything else after that. Also, Archie's lawyer is Abe Rabinowitz, and if you recall, during "All in the Family", Archie hired Solomon Rabinowitz for another case. Lastly, this particular episode hardly had any honest funny moments, and I think at this junction in the series, a laugh track was used instead of the show being filmed live, but I'm not 100% certain. Even the ending of this episode was pretty lame, and I had feeling it was meant to be a type of cliffhanger, but I thought it fell flat.
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Read the novel first
14 September 2018
Even though I did read the novel first, it still took me a few minutes to get the gist of what was going on, as scenes moved with perhaps too quick of a pace. I feel anyone seeing this film before reading the novel beforehand may become a bit confused. A few negatives for me was that this film reminded me too much of "Van Helsing"(2004), with too much special effects and little else; also, the ending was different and less effective that the superior novel's ending. Lastly, there's no John Wilkes Booth to be found at all, and that was the biggest disappointment, as his final meeting with Henry(novel)is a great moment, but it was foolishly ignored in the film. All of that being said, this was an entertaining film, with decent performances, especially by Dominic Cooper(Henry), and Rufus Sewell(Adam), and I also liked some of the vampire transformations. I wished there were more scenes with Henry, a "good" vampire, if you will, and some mention of Booth, as I stated above. If you think this is a film you want to watch, I would highly recommend reading the novel first, as it's an easy read, and you may learn things about the great Abraham Lincoln that you never knew about, as I did.
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Night Gallery: The Return of the Sorcerer (1972)
Season 3, Episode 1
kiss the toad
27 August 2018
I can understand Noel's(Bill Bixby)aversion for kissing the toad, but he kisses Fern(Patricia Sterling)after she kisses the toad, so I guess in reality, he does in fact kiss the toad. Now that's over with, let me speak a bit about this odd Vincent Price segment. Price is in fine form as a strange sorcerer named John Carnby, who hires Noel to translate an Arabic book in order to do weird things, which you probably read about already, although Noel's hesitant to accept the job offer at first. The version I saw seemed to have been edited form the original format, so there's some unanswered questions, which is frustrating, and is typical for this series, but I did enjoy this episode for the most part, especially Price, a black goat, and the eerie interior shots of the house/castle. This has a Roger Corman feel to it, which adds to the eyes. Jeannot Szwarc(Jaws 2)directed this episode, and he's also directed 18 other Night Gallery episodes.
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kept me entertained
5 June 2018
Someone on the forum for this film made a nice comment a while back, for which I'll paraphrase: he or she said something how the film "Airplane" was for airports as "Comedy of Terrors" is for undertakers. I couldn't have said it any better myself, even though I would've liked a few creepy scenes, considering the fine horror ensemble, and even a cat thrown in there, but this was 100% comedy. You know the cast by now, so I'll skip those details, but Vincent Price and Peter Lorre had fine chemistry together. If I knew this was a pure comedy and nothing to do with horror, I probably would've skipped the film, but I didn't know Price and Lorre could be just as entertaining as they were in "Tales of Terror", even though the latter is a better film. The only real negatives I can think of is Joyce Jameson's annoying singing, even though I know it was done on purpose, but it got tedious, as did Basil Rathbone's routine of rising from the dead. I don't think this film did too well at the box office, as plans for a sequel were nixed, but there are some truly funny moments by veteran horror actors that may be worth seeing.
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Coach: Dauber Graduates (1991)
Season 3, Episode 13
Dumb Dauber
8 March 2018
It's hard to get annoyed with Dauber(Bill Fagerbakke)usually, but he wins the prize here, as he goes out of character to annoy both Coach Fox and me! The gist has Dauber finally graduating college, even though he mentions "diploma", which I thought was only for high school, and Coach Fox and Luther are extremely happy for him, as was I. While Dauber's supposed to be getting Coach Fox's truck washed, he decides to turn around and refuses to wash the truck, as he feel's the chore is beneath him, since he's now a graduate. Never mind that Coach Fox has carried Dauber's butt for many years while he studied, but the coach has reason to be miffed at this defiance. I think Coach Fox was even prepared to make Dauber a full time assistant coach, which is a nice perk, but Dauber acted like a spoiled jerk, and totally out of character. The next part of the story has the coach wanting to skip Dauber's graduation ceremony, and look for a few mediocre performances from 8 feet tall Pam Stone, and someone named Karen Bankhead. Stone's acting career(thankfully)seemed to come to an end after this show, so there's that. Next, there's the "will he or won't he" angle to see if Coach Fox attends the graduation ceremony, and I'll let you find out next time you watch it, but you probably know the answer already. The ending's a bit predictable, but you can sense both anger and disappointment from our beloved coach.
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All in the Family: Mike's Problem (1971)
Season 2, Episode 9
Mike's double exam
10 August 2017
This semi-funny, but solid episode has Mike nervous about taking college exams, and this anxiety leads to a failing grade in the bedroom. Gloria's very understanding, and a funny moment is when she tries to talk to her mother about a sexual problem, for which Edith struggles to handle such a delicate topic. It's also funny when Edith tries telling Archie about it, and his advice to Mike doesn't exactly inspire confidence. There's even one more funny scene, and it revolves around Archie and Henry Jefferson(Mel Stewart)at the bar, when Archie asks his "friend" how black folks have a certain "moxie" in the sex department, and Henry's answer is probably the best moment of this episode. I just remembered another funny moment right after a nervous Mike comes home after finishing his exams, and gets to meet Gloria, and has yet take another exam with her, if you get my meaning. She has one thing on her mind, but he's trying to stall her, so he wants to watch "Attack of the Sand Crab", which he sees inside the TV listings guide. After this moment, the show ends on a rather cute note.
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Magnum, P.I.: The Arrow That Is Not Aimed (1983)
Season 3, Episode 13
Magnum and Mako
8 August 2017
This segment has Magnum working with an old Samurai warrior(you read right)to locate a valuable plate that was stolen from the Japanese palace where Tozan(Mako)was guarding. The rub here is that this warrior's code involves suicide, mainly because he failed in his duty to protect this very expensive plate. Magnum does his best to help Tozan, and obviously talk the warrior out of killing himself. There's some comic relief revolving around dog repellent, and watching how T.C. and Rick react to the samurai angle, but nothing that memorable really happens. The fight scenes with Tozan taking on 5 or 6 others with swords was underwhelming, and a tad pedestrian, although I do enjoy Mako as an actor, as you'll see him all over the tube. To conclude, I'll say this wasn't among my favorite episodes, but it had a different angle and plot which may interest fans of this fine show.
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Magnum, P.I.: Mr. White Death (1982)
Season 3, Episode 8
Magnum and McHale's problem
1 August 2017
This entertaining episode stars the great Ernest Borgnine as a "professional" wrestler, who enlists Magnum's help to help locate his son, who he hasn't seen in over 30 years. I question "professional" because he performs in flea bag halls to wrestle, but there's a reason for that, and you'll have to find out for yourself why. A big reason why I enjoyed this is because Rick, T.C., and Higgins are all involved, and that adds to any episode, and don't forget the lads! Poor Rick takes several beatings too. Wrestling fans will probably enjoy this episode more than some other fans of the show, but Borgnine is worth the price of admission. An odd surprise has Higgins and Earl(Borgnine)having more in common than you'd think, and there's even a funny nickname involved, which I won't spoil here. Add in the mob angle, as their chasing after Earl, and a touching moment at the end with his son, and overall, what we get is a solid episode with added star power in the great Ernest Borgnine.
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Magnum, P.I.: Computer Date (1982)
Season 2, Episode 13
Slick Rick
7 July 2017
The most notable aspect for me in this episode is how sleazy and mean Rick is, especially to Magnum, who's really not at fault. I just found out that Larry Manetti(Rick)is actually married to the woman named Claudia Randolph, who he has an affair with. Her real name is Nancy DeCarl, and they've been married since 1980. Small world, isn't it? The other familiar faces include Charles Aidman, and Jeff MacKay, who plays the quirky "Mac", as Magnum once again enlists his help on this current case. Consider Magnum's surprise when he spots Rick as the man whom the married woman is having an affair with; Magnum was hired by a suspecting husband to "spy" on his wife, although he quits the job after he discovers it's Rick involved. When Rick finds out, he acts like a jerk, and probably slightly unrealistic, considering the years they've been friends. After the dust finally settles by the end, I would've liked if he apologized to Magnum, and even though he never did on camera, we can assume he did by the way they were back to their old selves again. This has a nice two tier story going on, maybe a third, if you consider Higgin's old flame stopping by the estate, and it's funny watching him try to get in shape. Finally, look for a cool Porsche 928 during a car chase.
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Magnum, P.I.: Wave Goodbye (1981)
Season 2, Episode 7
good cop, bad cop?
29 June 2017
This episode has Magnum investigating the death of some flirty surfer girl named Kacy, who he's supposedly friends with, but something about her death irks him. Interestingly enough, this is Diane Crowley's(Kacy)final acting credit, and 8 months after this episode was aired, Vic Morrow(Sgt. Jordan)would be tragically killed on the set of a movie. Curse you John Landis! While I'm discussing the other characters, I felt the most memorable performance was by Wings Hauser, who played Nick, a veteran of the Vietnam War, and suspect of Kacy's death. The scenes between he and Magnum were both sad and touching, as Magnum tries his best to get him proper care in a hospital, as he's homeless and plagued by past demons from the war. There was only 1 scene with Higgins unfortunately, and I thought the ending could've been a bit more dramatic, but overall, I was pleased with most of this episode.
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Columbo: Strange Bedfellows (1995)
Season 13, Episode 1
Old-Timers Day
15 March 2017
The most notable aspect for me was the familiar faces in this episode, which include fine performances by both George Wendt and Rod Steiger, and watch for regulars John Finnegan, and the final appearance of Bruce Kirby. Wendt is the real star here, as he's just a few years removed from a memorable run on "Cheers", and he's very convincing in a murderous role here. Steiger is also in fine form as a mob boss, as he warns Columbo that he'll give him time to arrest Graham(Wendt), but if that fails, then he'll take care of matters himself and that won't be pretty. Without giving too much away, this ending plot borrows heavily from "A Case of Immunity", which is a fine episode from 1975, and I could see this conclusion coming a mile away, especially them giving the same "thumbs-up" gestures, so that drops this episode down a few pegs. As someone else said, this isn't the best Columbo film in the stable(pun intended), but it's passable, and instead of Wendt raising a glass of beer, this time he's raising a gun.
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3/4 good,1/4 bad
27 February 2017
This film, while solid for the most part, reminds me of a scene from "Columbo", where one character says to the detective "an exciting meal has been ruined!". That's the way I felt about this film, and they say a poor ending can hurt a film, and I must agree here. While this may seem like a negative review, there's things that I did like, such as Robert Quarry's performance, and the creepy mansion in which he resides, with a bunch of slick dark rooms, and skinny stairs. Look for some familiar faces in a very young Craig T. Nelson, Mariette Hartley, Michael Pataki, and Rudy De Luca. On the other hand, there's Philip Frame, who plays Tommy, and he may be the worst actor I've ever seen, and I'm not surprised that he only has 1 more acting credit after this film. That kid also deserved that good smack, the little jerk. One of the most disappointing aspects for me is that Tommy doesn't get his just desserts he richly deserved, but that's all I'll spoil for you. There's more good scenes than bad scenes, but the bad ones almost defy vampire logic, and really hurt the film for me.
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Carpenter's creepy cult classic
21 February 2017
So maybe I'm stretching "classic" a bit, but this film never got the good reviews I felt it deserved, an I'm a veteran of many things horror. The subject matter is fairly original. Did you ever hear of Satan as a green fluid held prisoner under a creepy old church? I didn't think so. Watch how Donald Pleasance overacts, but he's engaging, and makes anything he's in that more enjoyable. A few more familiar faces include Jameson Parker, who's sporting a Freddie Mercury mustache, Dennis Dun, Alice Cooper(that's right)and Victor Wong. I found this film very suspenseful with some interesting kills, and cool scenes. It's not a film that ends nicely, like many John Carpenter films, so you may feel empty after watching it, but the ride should be worth it. There are a few negative things, however, that bear mentioning, such as poor character development, as there's really no one to root for, and an awful, forced love scene that's almost as bad as the one from The Fog(1980), as it wasn't needed at all. Getting those out of the way, I still recommend this film, as I don't think Carpenter made many more good ones after this came out.
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976-EVIL (1988)
End of an era
31 January 2017
I guess I have a soft spot, a very small one, for this forgotten film, which was directed by horror icon Robert Englund. I think it's because it came out at the end of the 80's, which is the decade I saw the majority of my horror films, as I consider myself a horror buff. I've seen it listed as either 1988 or 1989, but I don't think I've seen many more horror films since then, as the 80's wrapped up my teen years. An interesting tidbit has star Stephen Geoffreys basically become a gay porn star not long after this film came out, no pun intended. You probably won't recognize anyone else, other than perhaps Sandy Dennis, and maybe Robert Picardo. I thought the premise of the film was fairly original; you call a "horrorscope" number, and you get to speak to the Devil. There's a catch though, if you don't do what "he" says, you get a strange sounding ring on a nearby pay phone(remember them?)and bad stuff may happen to you. Buyer beware! I'll get the bad out of the way; first off, I didn't like how Hoax decided to play a cruel, but deadly joke on Suzie, considering she was very nice to him, and even tried to protect him from bullies. Her death scene was pretty lame, as far as horror standards go. Also, the way the house turned into a foamy ice inside, and the fire effects under the house, were cheesy at best. I did like the creature's make-up for the most part, although the extra large hands and feet could've been done better. I also thought the fish falling from the sky was interesting, and I haven't seen anything like it before or after this film. Mark Dark was a very cool addition, but I wish there was more background on his character. To finish this review, I'll reiterate that this has some late 80's charm to me, and was probably one of the last horror films I saw, at least from what I can recall, as the 80's gave me some really cool horror film memories, and I'll proudly include this film as well.
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All in the Family: The Taxi Caper (1973)
Season 4, Episode 13
And justice for all?
30 November 2016
With the recent crazy world of American politics, this episode revolves around the power of the purse, which directly affects one Archie Bunker. The story has Archie robbed in his cab by a young white man, which both surprises and disappoints him, but it turns out this youngster is the son of a powerful politician. Watch for familiar faces in Robert Mandan and Michael Pataki, as they both play their respective parts convincingly. An interesting scene has Archie obviously lambasting the criminal, while Mike the liberal tells him that even criminals aren't pieces of trash, as Archie calls the thief; however, after Archie gets bribed by a smooth talking attorney to drop the charges, Mike reverts to calling Archie a hypocrite, and even criticizes the attorney for defending the politician's son. It was nice to see Mike take off his liberal cap for once, and call a spade a spade. I won't spoil the ending, but even though Archie got paid/bribed $100 to forget about the crime, his wallet is about to get "legally" hit in the police station. The most notable aspect for me was Mandan's and Pataki's appearances, but this was still a solid episode.
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All in the Family: Teresa Moves In (1976)
Season 7, Episode 9
The frog that ate Tokyo
29 August 2016
By this later season, this show was on a serious decline, but this is a fine gem which re-introduces Teresa(Liz Torres)as a minor character. Archie is looking to rent a room to a boarder, and somehow Teresa, who once annoyed him during a hospital stay, winds up being the one chosen to live there. In case you didn't already know, the Stivic's moved out, and the Bunker's needed the extra income. It'll obviously take Archie some time to get used to her staying, and her outspoken Puerto Rican ways; plus, he's also dealing with Marvin the mouse! This isn't the greatest episode they ever did, but it adds a slightly different tinge than what you may be used to, and I felt that Torres had a fine performance, and more than held her own. One scene I did find odd had Edith telling Archie about a movie he liked being on the tube, while Teresa's studying for her exams in the same room. I think Edith dropped the ball right there, but this is still a fine episode during the weak run of this once great series.
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Count Mallachi
25 August 2016
If you're trying to figure out my summary line, it's a reference to Michael Pataki's character in "Happy Days", which many may remember him by, as I do. Look for veteran character actor William Smith, who's always solid, although he probably needed slightly better material to work with in this film. I'm a fan of most 70's vampires, and while this won't be tops on my list, I still enjoyed this slightly different "bite" than what I'm used to. Pataki was solid as the main vampire, although he lacked the charm that many have playing the lead dude, but he was still convincing, and sometimes creepy, save for the silly fangs. Something that stood out to me was the mother feeding her "baby vampire" blood, although it was an odd scene to watch, but I never saw anything like it before, and I've seen tons of vampire films. The atmosphere, especially the college campus at night, worked for me; there was also a slick fog throughout the cemetery too. A few things made me scratch my head, such as the rushed love scene between James(Smith)and Anne(Lyn Peters), who just met minutes before. There was an interesting police angle early on, but after one detective gets killed, that's the end of the police hunt. Overall, this was a different type of vampire film than you may be used to, but it's worth a try.
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A bit overrated, but still decent
4 August 2016
If you're expecting a terrific review, or expecting me to tear this film to shreds, then stop reading it right now, and go do something more worthwhile. Right off the bat, I REALLY wanted to REALLY like this film in spades, maybe because I caught a few minutes of it about 20 years ago at a friend's house, or maybe because I'm a fan of most stuff late 70's, especially the great music and cool cars. I can "almost" relate to the beer parties in the woods in my youth, mainly because my beer party heyday was around 1986, even though this film revolves around 1976. As I do in many reviews, I like to get the bad out of the way; in this case, the very bad being Wiley Wiggins(Mitch)and Christin Hinojosa(Sabrina), as I found them both boring characters, and poor actors. Check out their lack of other acting gigs to confirm my complaint about them. That's the worst of my ambivalence towards this film. I also thought it lacked a central character, as kids seemed to wander in and out of scenes for no particular reason with nothing special to do, there's barely a plot, added with mediocre character development. What saved the film from itself is the fine depiction of the beer party in the woods, which makes this film "almost good", to be kind. I was involved in the same type of parties, although less glamorous, around 1986 or so, so it touched a soft spot for me. During these scenes, we get some real teen angst, such as tension between characters Mike, Clint, Pink, Jodi, and Benny. Ted Nugent's "Stranglehold" really worked for me during these scenes, as it was my favorite song for this film. I needed a bit more drama though, and wish there were more scenes like these, but that's not the case. In closing, would I recommend this to a friend? No, I wouldn't. If, however, someone's interested in that time period, and can relate to some of the characters, then I guess it may or may not mean more to them than it did me. If I saw this film without reading the hype, then maybe I'd like it better, so perhaps my expectations were a bit high to begin with.
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Columbo: Mind Over Mayhem (1974)
Season 3, Episode 6
"You'll sleep like the dead"
2 August 2016
To understand my above quote, you should be made aware of "Salem's Lot", a terrific vampire film starring Lew Ayres, who also just happens to be the hapless victim in this episode. The other familiar faces include Jose Ferrer, Jessica Walter, Robert Walker Jr., Lee Montgomery, Lou Wagner, and Robby the Robot! Let me get the bad out of the way first, as it sometimes plagues this great series; the particular scene in question has Dr. Nicholson(Ayres)basically warn Dr. Cahill(Ferrer)that he(Nicholson)will report Cahill's son for plagiarizing a dead man's work. Also, I thought Dr. Nicholson's wife(Walters)could've acted a bit more sad about her husband's murder, plus she didn't go out of her way to help Columbo. Now that that's out of the way, I enjoyed the different setting of a government think tank, with several computers, and even a cool robot which I mentioned already. Columbo's dog makes a few cute appearances as well, and that always adds to any episode. Even though the ending was original, and not the usual formula, I still think it was beneath Columbo to get a confession that way. Overall, it a solid story, with some fine acting, especially by Ayres and Ferrer.
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Columbo: By Dawn's Early Light (1974)
Season 4, Episode 3
For those about to rock...
19 July 2016
Classic rock fans may understand my summary line, which is in regards to the murder weapon of choice, a cannon. The best aspect for me was the performance by Columbo veteran actor Patrick McGoohan, who portrays Col. Lyle C. Rumford perfectly. The other familiar faces include a very young Bruno Kirby, his father Bruce Kirby, an annoying Madeleine Sherwood, a mediocre Mark Wheeler, Tom Simcox, and Burr DeBenning. This is a different location than the usual boring mansion, as the entire episode is filmed at a real military academy! Columbo even volunteers to live with the cadets while he investigates the murder. Let me mention that the murder itself, while original, seems quite silly to pull off; also, is the motive really worth all the trouble? Enrollment is way down anyway, so closing the school shouldn't come as no big surprise. Regarding the "elusive cider", I find it hard to fathom that Rumford would continue to pursue this issue, since it places him at the scene of the crime, although I won't spoil anymore. Although these details are worth mentioning, and I'm a Columbo veteran myself, I still don't think they detract that much from a very solid episode.
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Columbo: Any Old Port in a Storm (1973)
Season 3, Episode 2
Highly entertaining
14 July 2016
This is among my favorite episodes of Columbo, along with the 1976 William Shatner one, mainly because the hammy performance of Donald Pleasance. Don't take that as a negative though, because he really shines as the snobby Adrian Carsini, even though he overacts just a tad, and he looks about as Italian as my cat, but he gives his all. It's obvious he and Peter Falk have great chemistry, and I found myself feeling sorry when he finally gets caught. The other familiar faces include Julie Harris, Gary Conway, Dana Elcar, and Joyce Jillson. How can you not love an episode that revolves around a winery? The winery itself is an actual one, located in San Jose, called Mirassou Winery. We also get to see a cool 1966 Ferrari, that happens to have a "Colombo" engine, a wine auction, and a very cool vault under the winery. As much as I enjoyed this, there are still some silly things that Carsini does before and after the murder, and I really doubt folks behave this way in real life, so those aspects make this from being a perfect segment. Whatever the case, this is still one of my favorites anyway.
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The Odd Couple: The Paul Williams Story (1974)
Season 5, Episode 9
Uninspiring all around
27 June 2016
As much as I anticipated this segment, it must be said that it was a major letdown, especially the mediocre performance of Doney Oatman, who plays Edna Unger, who did little of substance, and was as wooden as they come. Pamelyn Ferdin did a much more credible job a few years before as Edna. Even Paul Williams gave a rather lame performance, especially when he performed. I'm also not that surprised that Oatman's acting career ended about 3 years later. One scene in particular that bugged me was when Edna meets Willaims, her idol, and she just stares at him and gapes without uttering one word, then he leaves shortly after. I've seen wood with more emotion. Now that I piled on her enough, there's a few decent moments, I guess, but not enough to ever want to watch this again. Maybe the writers were out of ideas? The only interesting moment is when Oscar mentions Alice Cooper's name.
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Columbo: Blueprint for Murder (1972)
Season 1, Episode 7
Country vs. Classical
21 June 2016
I would have to say the best moments for me, although too short, are the tense scenes between Forrest Tucker, Patrick O'Neal, as both give great performances. The other familiar faces include Janis Paige, Bettye Ackerman, and John Fiedler; I found Pamela Austin slightly annoying as the "child bride". No need to go through the plot, as you probably read it, or know it, by now. Peter Falk did a commendable job as the director of this episode, as it's not the usual murder taking place in a big mansion; rather, mostly everything revolves around a construction site, namely "Willamson City". We also get some nice scenes on a ranch, an impressive office, a university classroom, and real construction workers doing their trade. As fine as this episode was, I'm not so sure Columbo could've gotten quick approval to dig up a massive pile of concrete, which occurs here. Other than that small tidbit, this is a mighty fine story.
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All in the Family: Cousin Maude's Visit (1971)
Season 2, Episode 12
Bea Arthur is amazing
14 June 2016
It's not easy to upstage Archie Bunker, but Maude pulled it off, as Bea Arthur hit a home run with her excellent performance. Even before her first appearance on the episode, there's some very funny moments, as Archie, Mike, and Gloria are all sick, and poor Edith tries her best to tend to all of them. When it's too hard for her, Maude comes to the rescue, much to the chagrin of Archie! He can't stand her or her liberal ways. I won't get into the banter between the two of them, but it is legendary; besides, it's probably the first time I ever heard the word "socialist", which was uttered by Archie about FDR, whom Maude loved. I would say this is among my top overall episodes for this great show, and if you're a fan of Arthur's, make sure to catch her wonderful performance here.
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