Saturday, December 29, 2012

F13:TS 25 - Bedazzled


Episode Recap #14: Bedazzled

Original Airdate: February 27, 1988

John D. LeMay as Ryan Dallion
Louise Robey as Micki Foster
Chris Wiggins as Jack Marshak

Guest cast:
Alan Jordan as Jonah
Gavin Magrath as Richie
David Mucci as Tom
Paual Barrett as Jenny
Timothy Webber as Telephone Lineman
Ratch Wallace as Officer Kennedy
J.J. Makaro as David Jones

Written by Paul Monette, Alfred Sole

Directed by Alexander Singer


This week, we start underwater! A camera pans across the sunken wreckage of a ship. Later, a man on a ship holds a lantern beam towards the water. A diver comes up, telling the man he was right, it works. They haul up and onto their boat a treasure chest. Back at the dock, two men carry the chest while one of them tells the guy with the lantern, Jonah, that he couldn't find anything until the man shone the lantern light into the sea. Then, the treasure chest was there. The three men bring the chest inside a docked ship. Outside, Jack and Ryan are skulking about, looking for the lantern.

Wonder who ended up finding the treasure on Jonah's ship later?

Jonah and one of his men use a blowtorch to try and get into the chest, sending the other man above. Jack and Ryan decide to slip into the ship, careful to avoid the man above. Jonah opens the chest, revealing gold, diamonds and more inside. Jonah then holds the lantern up to his buddy and opens it, the beam of light hitting the other man in the chest, igniting him into flames and killing him. Ryan and Jack hear the man's screams and rush in. Ryan attacks Jonah, who drops the lantern, which Jack picks up. Ryan and Jonah struggle as Jack tries to get away. The third man, Tom, comes back and struggles with Jack. Back and forth they all go until Ryan knocks Tom away from Jack and they make their escape. Before Jonah or Tom can reach them, they get in their car and drive off. Jonah makes notice of their license plate, however.

Lantern is pretty straight-forward. Plays on greed, pure and simple.

At Curious Goods, Micki hears about their shipboard adventure and says she is glad she missed it. Ryan says the lantern is locked safely in the vault. Jack reminds them of what the lantern's curse was: for every treasure the lantern found, a diver had to die. Jack mentions the storm outside getting worse. Ryan thinks they should stay home, but Jack says this is the only day the astrology convention is being held this year. Braving the storm, Jack and Ryan head out to the convention, leaving Micki home alone. Jonah and Tom watch the two of them leave from across the street.

An astrology convention! Interesting way to get them out of the store.

As Micki locks the store up, Jonah calls, hears her voice and hangs up. Jonah tells Tom that it doesn't matter, he's getting the lantern back. Tom reminds Jonah that Jack mentioned something on the ship about putting the lantern in a vault. Jonah tells him that when he bought the lantern here from Louis, there was a vault in the basement.

The phone rings again and Micki answers, nervous. But it is her friend, Jenny, asking if Micki can babysit her son, Richie. Micki agrees, telling her to bring the boy over.

Outside, in the rain, Jonah and Tom wonder how to get inside. Just then, a telephone repairman pulls up to do some work.

Micki moves some breakable antiques to safety as the weatherman on the radio says the storm is getting worse, being upgraded to a hurricane. The men outside approach the telephone man, making small talk. Before long, Jonah has a phone cord around the man's neck and he strangles him, killing him.

In the shop, the phone rings again. Micki answers and hears Ryan's voice, telling her that they are stuck at the convention, the storm is too bad. She tells him to have fun and stay safe, she is fine. As she hangs up, she gets the chills. Jonah cuts the phone line outside.

Jack and Ryan, after calling Micki, debate driving back home, but decide to proceed on to the convention, since the roads are so bad.

Micki hears a knock at the door and opens it to Jonah and Tom, posing as the telephone repairmen. Micki says the phone is working, she was just on it. He asks her to check again and when she does, she finds the line dead. Jonah asks if he wants her to fix it and she agrees, letting them inside. He asks where the basement is, Micki leads the way, then hears another knock on the door. She lets them go off on their own and lets her friend Jenny and his son Richie inside. Richie isn't happy to be there. Jenny heads out, leaving Micki to babysit. He hides from Micki as soon as his mother is gone, then scares Micki with an old mask. Micki snaps at him. Richie asks to read Ryan's comics and she lets him be.

Love all the shots of the interior of the store in this episode!

In the basement, Jonah and Tom are trying to access the vault, but cannot find a way in. Jonah decides they should use the blowtorch to break into it open. Micki gives Richie some cookies, he proceeds to pull all the chips out to just eat them. Micki goes to check the windows.

You are a weird kid, Richie.

The blowtorch makes no progress on the vault. Tom knocks some stuff over and Jonah snaps at him. Richie hears the commotion and goes to investigate. He doesn't buy their story about fixing a phone with a blowtorch. He says they aren't supposed to fool with the vault. Jonah places nice, trying to keep the charade up. Jonah asks for help from Richie, who is reluctant and wary of the strange men. He says he is going to tell and attempts to run off, but Jonah grabs him.

Micki is looking for the boy upstairs when Richie yells for help. She rushes downstairs and finds the men tying the boy to a chair. Micki acts calmly when Jonah says pretending to be phone men was their only way in. A cop pulls up alongside the abandoned phone truck outside.

Jonah wants the lantern and wants Micki to open the vault. She says she doesn't know how to get in. Jonah threatens her with a match, asking her if she knows what skin smells like burning. He then burns the end of her hair and she concedes, telling him there is a secret entrance to the vault. She lies and says the instructions to get into the vault are written in the manifest, upstairs on Jack's desk. Jonah takes her upstairs to look, leaving Tom with Richie. Outside, the cop finds the cut phone wires and repair equipment, but not repairman.

Wonder if she let them really burn the end of her hair?

Jonah snaps after being unable to find the vault instructions. Micki attempts to attack him, but he grabs her and takes her weapon away, leading her back to the basement. The cop opens the compartments of the truck and eventually finds the repairman's body. He heads toward Curious Goods.

Micki is trying the various bricks around the vault, pretending not to know which one activates the vault. The cop knocks on the door and Jonah sends Tom up to investigate, telling Micki to keep trying the bricks.
Tom calls to the cop, not wanting to open the door. The cop plays cool, saying he is just checking the neighborhood, making sure all is okay. He asks if they are having trouble with the phones and Tom says no, their phones are fine. The cop knows the man is lying. He tells Tom to have a good evening, then proceeds to surprise him by breaking the door in. He tells Tom to freeze, but the man tries to attack, so the cop shoots him.

Jonah tries a brick Micki keeps avoiding and the vault opens. He heads inside just as they hear the gunshots above. He tells Richie to be quiet then tells Micki to untie the boy and put him in the vault. He follows, grabs a weapon, then locks the two of them inside. He goes after the cop. Micki comforts the boy, telling him they will get through this.

The cop searches the store as Jonah slowly heads upstairs. The cop doesn't see Jonah with the weapon from the vault. Jonah attacks from behind, impaling the man through his back and out his chest. The cop dies. Jonah pulls the blood-soaked weapon out of the man's chest and uses it to fix the door so it cannot be opened. He checks on Tom, who is also dead, and removes the chain from around his neck. In the vault, Micki is looking for something to use to defend themselves against Jonah. She finds the lantern the man wants and picks it up.

When Jonah comes back, he opens the vault and sees the lantern places right in view. As he reaches for it, Micki attacks, stunning him. She tells Richie to run as she grabs the lantern and follows. Jonah soon regains himself and follows.

In the store, Micki and Richie find the dead cop and try to get out, but the door is jammed. She tells Richie to go to her room and hide, then grabs the lantern and follows, shutting the door and blocking it with her bureau. She then grabs her bedside lamp and strips the wire, telling Richie she is going to give the man the shock of his life. She slips the wire onto the metal of the lantern and sets it on the bed, then tells the boy not to touch the lantern after he plugs the cord into the wall. They hide, waiting for Jonah.

Slowly going up the stairs, Jonah is wary of where Micki might be hiding. He goads them from outside the room, then forces the doors open, pushing the bureau away. He spies Micki, who eggs him on toward the lantern. She says he can't have it, but he sees it sitting on the bed and reaches for it. When he grabs it, he is electrocuted and collapses to the floor. Micki tells Richie to pull the plug. She undoes the wire and they attempt to leave the room. Jonah grabs her ankle, knocking her down, and they struggle about the usptairs.
Micki eventually gets to the landing, telling Richie to toss the lantern over. He does and when Jonah goes to grab it, she grabs his foot and uses his momentum to push him over the railing and onto the floor below. They believe the man is dead and head down the stairs.

Ouch, to put it mildly! Surprised this didn't kill him!

As they reach the bottom, Jonah jumps up and grabs the lantern, opening the door so he can use the cursed beam to kill them. As the light plays across the store, Micki evades it and grabs an antique mirror, using it to deflect the beam back at Jonah. He is ignited and his head burns. He is killed.

Smart thinking, yet again!

The next morning, Ryan and Jack have returned and Ryan goes on about all the trouble they had on their trip. Micki listens and when he asks what she did all night, she says nothing. Ryan says he wishes he could have a quiet evening like hers. Just then Jenny arrives, asking Micki to not tell Richie any ghost stories next time she babysits. Micki says she didn't, but Jenny tells her all the stuff Richie told him about his night at the store. When she mentions the lantern, Jack and Ryan are curious. Micki merely, smiles, heads upstairs, saying "Kids." as she goes.

Ah, Micki. Leaving a mystery for the boys to figure out.


My thoughts:

An awesome episode! The show takes the premise of a babysitter being stalked in the home on a stormy night and turns it into quite a great episode. Micki is great as the babysitter, showing us just how resourceful she has become in her time at the store.

The lantern is a great antique, love how the curse works and what Jonah will do to keep this item for himself!

Love the scenes in the sea and on the water. Beautiful shots!

Amazing shots, well done!

One thing I was curious about: If Jonah took the sword-type weapon from the vault and used it to kill the cop, wouldn't whatever curse the item had be activated? I know he doesn't have much time to figure out what the item does, but seems like something should have happened with it.

Jenny and Richie are interesting, since we have been led to believe the neighbors all avoid the store, especially after the events on Halloween. Yet Micki has a friend who is willing to let her son be babysat there. Maybe Jenny just has no idea about the store's history. Then again, we never see Jenny or Richie again, so he must have been adamant about never returning there.

Micki also was able to get all the evidence of the night's events cleared up before anyone got back. I mean, the repairman, the cop and two other people were killed in and around the store and there is no investigation on going or anything. You would think there would be police tape or something! Hah!

Anyway, it is a fun, stormy-night episode of the show, with tons of scenes set at the store, which I also love. A favorite!

Next week: "Vanity's Mirror"

Monday, December 24, 2012

The Night Before Christmas - Carly Simon

The Night Before Christmas
by Carly Simon

My new favorite this year,
don't know how I missed it before.
To me, it seems like she is saying you don't have to
be religious to enjoy or celebrate Christmas.
A message I love.

Merry Christmas Eve everyone!
Hope you have an amazing day and night!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Comin' Home for Christmas - Dolly Parton

Comin' Home for Christmas
by Dolly Parton

Dolly has a quite a knack for songwriting,
and she has written many great holiday songs.
This is a more recent one and it is great, as usual.

Friday, December 21, 2012

F13:TS 25 - The Baron's Bride


Episode Recap #13: The Baron's Bride

Original Airdate: February 20, 1988

John D. LeMay as Ryan Dallion
Louise Robey as Micki Foster
Chris Wiggins as Jack Marshak

Guest cast:
Tom McCamus as Frank Edwards
Kevin Bundy as Abraham
Susannah Hoffmann as Caitlin
Diana Barrington as Marie Simmons
John Shepherd as Constable

Written by Larry Gaynor
Directed by Bradford May


This week, we open on a man walking down the street. He arrives at a house with a room for rent and knocks on the door. A woman answers, saying she was waiting for him. She says she has been looking to rent the room since her husband died. The man, Frank Edwards, replies that, from the look of things outside, a man is needed around here. She agrees, then leads him upstairs. The room is large, done up in an antique style. The woman, Mrs. Simmons, leaves Frank alone to check out the room. Frank's attention is drawn to a cape laid out on the bed, with a brooch for a clasp. The woman watches him from the doorway.

At Curious Goods, Jack tells Micki and Ryan to get their coats. He says he has located the cape at a house on Bay Street. Seems it was sold to a Peter Simmons, who died. Jack saw that the house he lived in has a room for rent, so he wants Ryan to pretend to rent the room so they can look for it.

Back at the house, Frank is drawn to the cape and the brooch and puts it on so he can look in the mirror. His appearance is instantly changed to a more Gothic, romantic look. Mrs. Simmons comes in and tells him it is okay that he put it on, she has been waiting for someone else to wear it. Frank protests, but she says the man who could wear the cape is the man she wants to share her life with.

I wonder if Mr. Simmons was already a vampire when Lewis sold this to him?

On the way to the house, Ryan asks Jack about the cape. Jack says that when a man wears the cape it makes him irresistible to women. Micki wonders what good the cape will do Mrs. Simmons, then.
Mrs. Simmons tells Frank that they can be together forever. A drop of his blood mixed with hers on the clasp and they can even travel through time! She loosens his collar.


Jack knocks on the door, but no one answers. Inside, Mrs. Simmons tells Frank that, first, he must become "one of us". She then bears her fangs and bites into his neck. Outside, the trio hears Frank's scream and bust the door open and rush inside. More screams lead them upstairs, where they find Mrs. Simmons feasting on Frank, her mouth covered in blood. She uses her powers to attacks Micki, knocking her out. Then she forces Jack back and tosses Ryan out of the room. Ryan gets and idea and rushes downstairs. The vampire attacks Jack as Frank comes to, a vampire himself now. Mrs. Simmons is about to attack Jack when she is stabbed through the back and into her heart by the "Room for Rent" sent wielded by Ryan. She dies.

Ironic, I think? Hmmm...

Jack tells Micki to get the cape from Frank, but the curse works on her and she is entranced by the new vampire. She leans in and a drop of her blood lands on the clasp as a drop of his does. The time travel aspect of the curse is activated, but Ryan grabs onto Frank, trying to free Micki. Instantly, the three of them are transported back in time to 1875 London! Frank takes off, leaving Micki and Ryan confused.

Well, this is a new one for our heroes.

A young couple approach them, asking if they need assistance  Ryan says that they have come a long way and Micki says they are from the States. The man introduces himself as Abraham and his wife as Caitlin. Ryan asks if he knows of a place to stay and Abraham offers to let them stay with them. Micki is still entranced, however, looking around for Frank.

Kindness ends up being their downfall, sadly.

Frank runs through the London streets, confused. The lust for blood causes him to follow a street walker and he scares her, but tells her he just needs help and leads her away. She is entranced by him, as well, and he feasts on her blood as she screams into the night. As he finishes, a constable notices and calls to him. Frank bares his bloody fangs, then disappears into the night.

At Abraham's, Caitlin tends to Micki's cut. Some confusion takes place as the couple are confused about customs Ryan mentions. Ryan worries about Micki, asking her what's wrong. She snaps, saying that they are trapped in London in 1875 with no way of getting home. He says they will get back, they just need the cape. Micki wonders if they will be stuck there forever if they can't locate the cape. Caitlin offers to let them stay there, but Micki says that isn't the point. She looks out the window and then says she is tired.

Micki, trapped by a curse antique, yet again!

During the night, Micki awakens, feeling a need to find Frank. She attempts to slip out of the apartment, but is stopped by Ryan. She tells him to go back to sleep, she just wants to look for the cape. Ryan doesn't understand why she wants to go tonight. He reminds her that they shouldn't be chasing vampires at night. She says she isn't afraid, which worries Ryan more. She insists all is well, but Ryan tells her he won't let her go. She snaps at him and Abraham awakes. Soon, they hear a commotion outside and a man in the street tells them about the dead prostitute with the marks on her neck. They all rush out to investigate, leaving Caitlin home alone.

Outside, Frank is running from the mob chasing him. Ryan tells Abraham about the vampire, but the man doesn't believe him. Still, he leads them on toward where the murder occurred  Seeing the body, he still doesn't believe a vampire is the culprit. Ryan asks if Abraham knows of places to hide in the city, which he does. Ryan then says they need some items before they go after the creature.

Frank hides in an old building and the mob moves on, not knowing how close they were. Abraham leads Micki and Ryan to the old warehouse, the same place Frank hid. The sun rises and Ryan is glad to have sunlight on their side. Micki says Frank is inside, it seems she can sense him. They enter and search.
Frank takes off the cape and tosses it aside. As soon as he does this, he feels strange. His skin begins to rapidly age and shrivel. The group gets closer to where he is hiding, Micki leading the way. Frank continues to age and then realizes the cape and clasp must have some power. He puts them back on and is instantly transformed into a young man again. He snarls and Micki hears, heading deeper into the warehouse.

A vampire trapped by a curse antique! Doh!

Frank leaps out at them, tosses Ryan and then Abraham aside. Micki warns Frank when Ryan attempts to attack, and the vampire tosses him away again. He tells them that Micki is his. Abraham takes a chance and rushes at the vampire with the cloves of garlic they brought. Frank is repelled and Ryan grabs Micki and the three make their escape. Frank quickly goes after then.

Micki screams in protest the whole time Ryan pulls her along with him. She needs to be with him, she yells. As Frank approaches, Ryan leaves Micki with Abraham and, just as the vampire grabs Micki, he opens the shutters on a window. The sunlight causes Frank pain and he takes off, back into the depths of the warehouse.

Back at the apartment, Caitlin asks if there is anything she can get for Micki. But the entranced woman just stares at the window, waiting. Abraham is still having trouble believing all this, but he knows how strong love is. Ryan says the only way to stop the vampire is to kill it, which Micki hears. Abraham insists on going with Ryan. Leaving Micki with Caitlin, the men head off to find the vampire.

In the warehouse, Frank is thinking about Micki and how she is the woman he wants to spend eternity with. His thoughts call out to Micki, awakening her in pain. She thinks about him, as well, and he gets the sense of just where she is. Ryan and Abraham arrive at the warehouse and look about.

At the apartment, Caitlin worries about Abraham and comments to Micki about the sunset. Micki smiles at the thought of the coming night. Later, she tells Caitlin "he" is here, she can feel it. But the woman sees no one when she looks outside. When she turns back, she sees Frank levitating outside the window, but he vanishes.

At the warehouse, Ryan and Abraham find the body of yet another woman and realize the vampire has fed and escaped. They rush out and are startled to see it is dark already.

Caitlin doesn't understand how someone could be outside their second story window, then hears the noise of a person on the roof. Opening the door to get away, she is frightened to find Frank standing there. She blocks the vampire from Micki, demanding he leave her be. But he reaches out and grabs the young woman by the throat as Micki, still entranced, watches.

Ryan and Abraham arrive and see the constables about. Abraham rushes inside and screams when he finds the dead body of his wife. Ryan steps closer to offer his sympathy, but Abraham tells him to get out, that ever since Ryan arrived, his life has been turned upside down and now look, Caitlin is dead. All because of Ryan and his stories of vampires. Ryan quietly leaves as Abraham cries over the body of his love. Outside, Ryan holds the wooden stake in his hand and heads off, determined to rescue Micki.

Poor Caitlin. Poor Abraham. Damn you, Lewis!

Micki awakens and Frank tells her not to be afraid, that he is the only man she will ever love. She is still under his spell. He tells her what Mrs. Simmons told him, about the cape and its powers. He leans in to bite her, but Ryan rushes him, stake in hand. Frank is able to deflect the attack and grabs Ryan by the throat, lifting him up into the air so he can kill him. Just before he can, however, the wooden stake protrudes through his chest. He screams and drops Ryan, then collapses. Abraham, having arrived and killed the vampire, tells him to die in pain.

Ryan picks up the cape with its clasp and heads to Micki, who is slowly coming out of the trance. He apologizes to Abraham, who apologies in return for doubting Ryan. Ryan says he can never thank him for all he has done and all he has suffered. Micki hugs Abraham, then Ryan is about to put his blood and Micki's on the clasp when Abraham says he wants to go with them. Ryan tells him he can't, he needs to stay in his own time. Ryan and Micki then mix their blood on the clasp and Abraham watches as they both vanish.
Back in the present, Jack is shocked when Micki and Ryan reappear, cape in hand. Ryan tells him he wouldn't believe how far they had to go to get it.

Later, at the store, Jack wants to hear about the London of the past. Ryan says they didn't have time to absorb all the details. Jack says it was a waste that they didn't see more on their journey. Micki says they got the cape and the clasp, that isn't a waste. Jack agrees, then tells them he has something to show them. He asks about their friend from the past, Abraham. Seems they never learned his last name, but Jack says he might know it. He pulls a book down and hands it to Micki. She reads the cover, "Dracula" by Bram Stoker. Ryan says it could be anyone, but Jack tells them to read the inscription. Micki does, and it reads "To Caitlin, The Only Woman I Will Ever Love".

Quite a twist. I like it! :)


My thoughts:

Great, jam-packed episode! Love the introduction of vampires into the series and how Jack, upon seeing the vampire attacking Frank, yells "Vampire!" He obviously has had some dealings with them in the past, makes me quite curious to know of those adventures.

Love how even vampires can use the cursed items, by the way. No one is immune to their power! And They are trapped by them, as well, as we see Frank shrivel when he tosses the cape and clasp aside. Doubly-cursed, he was.

Nice touch have the scenes in the past be in black and white. I know the show revisits this concept in other time travel episodes and I like it.

The twist of Abraham being Bram Stoker was fun, as well. Lewis not only made his cursed items able to affect people in the past, he inadvertently changed the history of literature and horror along the way!

Micki being entranced completely was scary. She stand by as the vampire kills Caitlin, unable to help. At the end, when the vampire is killed, I at first thought she pushed through the spell to save Ryan, but even then, she was helpless. Abraham had to do the killing. Makes sense, she would be totally in the power of the curse, just as everyone else has been. They aren't cursed by Satan for nothing!

Feel bad for Abraham and Caitlyn, though. All they did was try to help!

Great episode!

Next week: "Bedazzled"

Baby It's Cold Outside - James Taylor with Natalie Cole

Baby It's Cold Outside
by James Taylor with Natalie Cole

Since it is my daughter's birthday today,
I decided to post her favorite Christmas Carol, 
although I think she prefers the Glee version.

Happy Birthday Snowflake!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012

F13:TS 25 - Faith Healer


Episode Recap #12: Faith Healer

Original Airdate: February 13, 1988

John D. LeMay as Ryan Dallion
Louise Robey as Micki Foster
Chris Wiggins as Jack Marshak

Guest cast:
Miguel Fernandes as Stewart Fishoff
Robert A. Silverman as Jerry Scott
John Bethune as Man in Wheelchair
Lynne Gorman as Sylvia
Eddie Roy as Joey Lessing
Robert King as Faith Healer

Written by Christine Cornish
Directed by David Cronenberg


Can I mention, before we get into the recap, how much I love the opening of the show? Love the mini-tour of the antiques, wish we had seen some of these as cursed antiques in the show!

We open at a faith healer gathering. An old woman pushes a younger man in a wheelchair into the center of the room. The faith healer talks about the man's plight, the man is blind, supposedly. The faith healer says medicine couldn't heal the man, but he can. He lays his hand on the man's head and asks the group to help him heal the man. Suddenly, some one shouts from the group that they don't believe and says the faith healer is a fraud and is basically committing a crime. The faith healer, Stewart Fishoff, says the man is a liar and a drunk. The man, Jerry Scott, is unfazed and quizzes the blind man about what he can see. The man insists he is blind, but Scott walks over and places his hand on the man's head and proceeds to slide the fake contact lenses out of his eyes, showing the cataracts are fake. Fishoff slips out while the group is distracted.

Surprised anyone buys this malarkey!

Escaping down the fire escape, Fishoff encounters a man in a wheelchair who calls him and phony and tries to chase after him. Round a corner, he is accosted again by a group eager for vengeance. He runs and falls into trash in an alley. There, he spots a white, leather glove. He feels compelled to touch it and he puts it on his hand. The glove feels powerful to him, but he hit in the head with a crutch by a diseased woman. She says he promised to heal her but all he did was steal all her money. She goes to strike again, but falls. As she does, he places his gloved hand on her face. She reacts by moaning, but then stands on her own. She can walk and her face is free of disease. The glove has cured her. Fishoff is astonished, but takes off before she can speak to him.

This woman is cured and is never seen again.
How many were cured and unaware their health came from Satan?

Soon, Fishoff finds the glove mutating and passing the woman's diseases on to him. In pain, he stumbles along and a cop comes over to offer help. Fishoff places his gloved hand onto the cop's faces and passes the disease to him. The cop dies horribly, but Fishoff is healthy again, the glove white and perfect.

At Curious Goods six months later, Micki and Ryan try to get the television set to work and when it does it only gets in one station, which happens to be airing the new show of Fishoff, now a successful, religious faith healer. Jack comes in and notices the glove Fishoff places on his hand. He goes and scans the manifest, finding the item listed as The Sforza Glove. Jack said it was an item he obtained, it was from the time of DaVinci. It was supposed to provide good health for the ruling families that owned it. Jack wonders what the cost is for the healing it offers now.

Micki shows off her university knowledge to an impressed Jack.

Outside the studio the faith healer's show is taped, Micki and Ryan wait for Jack, who is quickly thrown out of the building, his lock-pick kit ruined in the process. Jack tells them to keep an eye on the entrance and watch for Fishoff, he goes off to find another way inside. Soon, they see Fishoff leave by the back fire escape and follow him. They lose him, so they split up.

A woman is walking her small dog and it gets away from her. She runs after it. Fishoff grabs the animal's leash and holds it out for the lady. When she reaches for it he places his diseased gloved hand onto hers and she is soon racked with horrible pain and disfigurement. She dies as the glove returns to normal. Ryan and Micki meet up and see the whining dog. They follow it and find the dead woman.

Back at the store, the three of them discuss the events, Jack figuring out how the curse works. Jack says they need help getting close to Fishoff and remembers someone who can help, but he needs to see this man alone, seems he is peculiar.

Comforting each other after the horrible find in the alley.
Love Ryan's arm on her shoulder,
but Micki's arm on the back of the couch.

At the docks, Jack stops at a ship and heads inside. The man who lives on the ship is Jerry Scott, an old friend of Jack's, who happens to be a "professional" debunker of faith healers. Jerry says he has exposed about 400 faith healers in 20 years of work, none every proving to be the real thing. Jack says Scott just never came across a real one. Jack asks for help with Fishoff, but Scott says he broke him six months ago. Jack says he's back and Scott says he knows, but doesn't see how matters, he is a fraud. Jack says that, yes, Fishoff himself is a fraud, but the item he has, the glove, allows him to actually heal people. For the sake of argument, Scott asks what harm there is if the glove is real? Jack says there is a nasty side effect to the healing the glove offers. Scott has a hard time believing Jack, but asks what he wants his old friend to do.

Jack would have a friend who lives on a giant ship like this!

Back at the studio, Fishoff meets with Scott, who says he is impressed with the recent success the faith healer has had. Jerry challenges  him to prove that he is actually able to heal people now. Fishoff asks why he should prove it. Scott says he is just greedy, a fraud and a hypocrite. He says he will break him, again, and this time he will stay broken. Fishoff accepts his challenge.

Did Silverman always play creepy guys?

Later, back in Jerry's home on the ship, he tells Jack about his meeting with Fishoff. Jack asks if he arranged for a patient for the challenge. Jerry says yes, someone who is terminally ill. Jack asks why he would do that. Scott says the person will die, but Jack says they can't let Fishoff actually heal anyone, cause then someone else will have to die. Scott says Jack has no say in this anymore, if he wants the glove, he'll get the glove. He then proceeds to show Jack his chest, covered with horrible sores. He is the one dying, he will be Fishoff's patient. Jack tries to dissuade his old friend, but Scott won't listen and pulls a gun on Jack. He comments how, after all the years he's spent debunking them, it will be a faith healer who saves him.

Back at the store, Micki is impatient waiting to hear from Jack. Ryan says he is worried, too, but Jack can handle it and he isn't alone, he's with his friend. Micki reminds him that Jack said this friend is peculiar.

Jerry has Jack tied up so he can't stop him from getting Fishoff to heal him. He locks Jack in a store room. Fishoff arrives at the ship with his bodyguard, who waits on deck. Going below, Fishoff asks where the patient is. Scott asks if he brought the glove. Fishoff asks why he is asking about the glove and Scott says it is part of what he does when he heals, isn't it? Fishoff agrees and says he has it. Scott then says that he himself is the patient. The faith healer thinks it is a joke, at first, but then takes some glee in the fact that, after all the pain Scott has caused him, he now has his life in his hands.

With friends like these, Jack...

Micki is pacing at the store, asking Ryan what time it is now. Ryan says it is late and they need to find Jack, something must have gone wrong. He finds Jack's address book with Jerry's information.

Fishoff acts as if he is going to heal Jerry, getting the man to say that he believes in him. He places his non-gloved hand on his head and says he is healed. But Jerry feels no different. Fishoff says he must have used the wrong hand. Maybe next time, he says, pocketing the glove and getting ready to leave. Jerry pulls his gun, threatening to kill him. He fires a warning shot, which brings the bodyguard in. Scott shoots and kills the man. Fishoff escapes. Scott rushes after him, shooting him several times before Fishoff can get into his vehicle. Desperate and dying, Fishoff places the glove on his wounds and drives off. But he soon crashes, his car becoming wedged in, trapping him inside.

Another simple, innocent, yet extremely powerful antique.

The glove has healed him of the bullet wounds, but he must now touch another or the glove will kill him as payment. Scott arrives and see the man trapped, but just sits and laughs as Fishoff asks for help. Fishoff is suddenly riddled with gunshots again, the glove returning what it had just saved him from. Jerry then slides the glove off the dead man's hand.

Back at the ship, glove on one hand, gun in the other, he opens the store room door. Jack is there, only just then having gotten himself loose. Scott tells Jack that Fishoff is dead. He says he can now use the glove to heal himself, but he'll need Jack to transfer the disease to and orders his friend out of the closet at gun point. Sitting, he slides the glove under his shirt, enacting the curse.

Micki and Ryan arrive and see their vehicle and know Jack is aboard. Inside, Scott pulls the glove out of his shirt, showing Jack it is now riddled with his disease. Jack struggles to keep his old friend from placing the glove on him and, in the struggle, Jack forces the glove back onto Jerry's face. Scott has his disease back, only this time it is magnified and kills him, but not before he asks Jack to pray for him. Micki and Ryan arrive and witness this sad end.

Zoinks. Should have left well enough alone, Jerry.

Later, at Curious Goods, Micki asks Jack about a cape in the manifest. Jack barely listens, still angry over the fact that his old friend just tried to kill him. He laments what his friends have done to him, including Lewis. Micki asks if he wants to leave the store and Jack says yes, but he can't, cause she and Ryan need him. Micki says she understands, but they have all given up stuff to do this job and if all they are is a liability to him, then maybe he'd be better off. Ryan interrupts as the argument grows, reminding Micki that Jack just lost a friend and reminding Jack that he is not alone, that they are his friends. He then says to keep it down, he has a head cold. Jack and Micki offer two different remedies and want to have a contest to see whose remedy cures Ryan. If he dies, though, all bets are off. Ryan heads to bed.

Ryan, peace-maker.


My thoughts:

A great episode with quite a straight-forward but immensely powerful cursed item. The power to heal anyone of anything is quite intoxicating, but then, someone always has to pay that price.

Love the scenes of Jack with his old friend, played so creepily by Robert A. Silverman. Desperate men go to desperate lengths, friends be damned.

On that note, I love that we get to see Jack, usually the voice of reason, speak his mind and vent his frustrations over having his friends betray him and his life always in jeopardy having to get the cursed items back, items he brought to Lewis as a friend. Good to see that side, since Jack is human, too, after all.

The little spat with Micki is needed, to show the frustration they all have. Ryan mending the rift, while ill, is also great. And the little bit about seeing whether magic or medicine can cure him is fun, too!

Just a great episode! Cronenberg does a great job directing and the special effects on the victims are horribly gruesome, fitting for what the glove does to them.

Love the mention of the cape by Micki, too, leading into next week's adventure!

Next week: "The Baron's Bride"

Crackerjack Christmas - Captain Kangaroo

Crackerjack Christmas
by Captain Kangaroo

Now that's a blast from the past!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Snowfall - Doris Day

sung by Doris Day

Since it is my wife's birthday, I decided to post a song
from one of her favorite's, Doris Day.

Happy Birthday, Raven!

I love this song.
It was composed by Claude Thornhill in 1941.
The instrumental version,
by either Dick Hyman or Dennis Farnon,
is also amazingly mellow.

Friday, December 7, 2012

F13:TS 25 - Scarecrow


Episode Recap #11: Scarecrow

Original Airdate: February 6 , 1988

John D. LeMay as Ryan Dallion
Louise Robey as Micki Foster

Guest cast:
Patricia Phillips as Marge Longacre
Ted Hanlan as Scarecrow
Steve Pernie as Sheriff Comins
Nicolas Van Burek as Jordy Meeno
Andrew Thomson as Dave Meeno
James B. Douglas as Charlie Cobean
Norma Edwards as Tudy Cobean
Todd Duckworth as Nick Cobean
Les Rubie as Nate

Written by Larry B. Williams, Marc Scott Zicree
Directed by William Fruet


We open on a farmhouse on a stormy night. A man is going over all the bills he owes, telling his son that he will pay every last one of them. The boy asks if it was the last crop that is the problem and the father says yes, it was a big disappointment. But he tries to remain upbeat for his son. A woman is outside the house, watching. She pins a photo of the dad to a scarecrow, who appears to be alive. In the house, the dad says good-night to his son and goes downstairs. He hears a noise and opens the front door to see the scarecrow with a scythe raised in the air. He slams the door but the scarecrow is in the house. The boy watches from the top of the stairs as the scarecrow beheads his father, then he sees a figure in a rain slicker take the head and leave. At sunrise, the woman is smiling, he arms raised to greet the day.

Marge does clean up after herself and her scarecrow.

Micki and Ryan are traveling after receiving a response to a mailer Ryan sent out, asking about a cursed scarecrow. The letter gives them an address and states "Please come get that Scarecrow!" Micki also has a postcard from Jack, seems he is on a mission to get a cursed item called the Icarus feather.

Not a pleasant drive into the country.

After stopping for directions, Ryan sees that Micki has packed a picnic lunch. She tosses him a baseball that she found in the drawer near the fridge at the store. It reads "To Ryan, from Jimmy." Ryan snaps at her for taking it, she apologizes, saying she didn't mean anything by it.

First we find out about Ryan's late brother, Jimmy Dallion.

At the address from the letter, they show the mailer to the man who lives there. He says he never heard of it. Micki asks about the scarecrow and the man's wife says they did buy it, but the man says it burned up a few years ago. Micki asks to use the bathroom and whispers to Ryan to keep them talking.

Micki quickly falls into a ruse to do some snooping,
Bet Ryan like the little smooch.

Micki snoops around the house and when a doorknob moves she unlocks the door to that room. A strange man comes up and attacks her. The old man and his wife get their son locked back in his room as Ryan comforts Micki. The man says their boy is their business and asks them to leave.

Outside, Micki and Ryan discuss that they know the man is lying, since the antiques can't be destroyed. On the premise that they are looking for antiques, the duo goes to the old barn near the house. Micki spots the crossbeam for a scarecrow in the field, but it is bare. The woman who had the scarecrow the night before approaches and asks who they are. They explain that they met the Cobeans and their curiosity got the better of them. She warns them about curiosity and tells them her name is Marge Longacre. She is bringing tea to help calm the Cobeans' son. When Ryan asks if she knows a place they can stay, she says she runs the only inn in town and points them in its direction. Marge goes to the Cobeans and asks about the visitors.

Micki looks great, as always.
But Ryan, that sweater. Wow.

That night, Micki and Ryan check into the inn. Ryan asks about a picture on the wall and Marge says it is of her and her husband. He was a farmer and the work killed him. After Marge leaves, Micki tells Ryan she thinks Mrs. Cobean wanted to tell them something. Marge overhears.

Later, Mrs. Cobean sneaks out of her home when her husband dozes off watching television. Visibly scared, the old woman nevertheless heads off to talk to Ryan and Micki. But Marge watches and pins a photo of the woman to the scarecrow. Soon enough, the scarecrow is after her, scythe in hand. She runs through the cornfield and to the inn. Thinking she eluded the scarecrow, Mrs. Coben climbs the stairs to inn porch. But when she turns around, the scarecrow is there and swings the scythe as she screams.

Inside, Micki hears the noise and opens the front door. She is horrified to find the still moving head of Mrs. Cobean on the floor and the scarecrow standing, watching her. She screams for Ryan, who rushes down the stairs. Ryan sees Mrs. Cobeans' body, but the head and the scarecrow are gone. Marge comes down asking what is going on and Ryan tells her there has been an accident. As he turns away, Marge smiles.

Mrs. Cobean decided to drop in on Micki.

The sheriff arrives at the inn and questions Micki and Ryan. As they sheriff goes to talk to Marge, Micki tells Ryan it was the scarecrow who killed her, with a photo pinned to his chest. The sheriff overhears and assumes Micki is telling Ryan a tall tale and advises her to keep that story to herself.

The next morning, Marge is cleaning up as the sheriff returns. He asks about her guests, he has more questions about Micki's story. Marge says the story sounds crazy, but the sheriff says the coroner's report confirms it was a long blade that killed her and they found straw in her hand.

Another huge antique for the vault!

Micki and Ryan purchase an old water pump from a local in town and ask if he knows of anyone else looking to sell anything. They ask about the Cobeans and the man says the Cobeans are one of the only families doing well while the rest of the locals are facing hard times. He thinks Mr. Cobean is lucky. They ask about any unsolved murders or disappearances. The man says some farmers take off before the bill collectors can get to them. Ryan asks if any were surprising. The man tells them about Dave Meeno, who wasn't the type to walk away from what he owed, but him and his boy both vanished. Ryan and Micki thank him and head out to the Meeno home to investigate.

Marge sees Micki and Ryan drive by and she plays on the emotions of the Cobeans' son, telling him she knows he likes Micki. She gets him riled up, telling him Micki is the type that needs breaking in.
At the Meeno home, poke around, looking for the scarecrow. They split up to search. In the house, Ryan finds evidence of someone still living there. Outside, Micki finds clothes on the line and is scared by a crow. She seems a pool of red liquid, apparently blood. She heads toward the old barn, which is burnt out and nearly a ruin. Ryan continues to search the house and is attacked from behind by the boy, Jordy Meeno. In the barn, Micki finds a tarp and thinks she is going to find a body underneath, but it is merely a basket of rotten tomatoes.

In the house, Ryan is struggling with Jordy and eventually gets the boy to calm down when he hears a scream from Micki. The scarecrow has appeared and is chasing her, scythe in hand once again. Micki falls and the scarecrow raises his scythe to strike her but he is shot by the recently arrived sheriff. He pulls the mask off the scarecrow and reveals the Cobeans' son, now dead.

The sheriff recognizes the boy with Ryan as Jordy Meeno and says he arrived there because he got impatient waiting for them at the inn. When the sheriff asks about Jordy's dad, Ryan hints that it appears the Cobeans' son must have killed him, too. Ryan says Jordy can stay with him and Micki at the inn until the sheriff can locate his aunt down south.

At the inn, Marge plays nice, asking if Jordy has said anything about what's happened. Ryan says no, and she tells him to let her know if he does speak up. Micki leaves her back at the bottom of the stairs and heads up to her room. Ryan continues to talk to Jordy, hoping to get him to open up. Micki arrives and they go into the other room so Jordy can sleep.

Downstairs, Marge goes through Micki's bag and finds her driver's license.  Ryan tells Micki that Jordy reminds him of Jimmy, his brother who died when they were kids. Ryan feels guilty because he was playing with his brother and there was nothing he could do to save him. Micki tells Ryan she found out that three people go missing every harvest, this year there has only been two, Dave Meeno and Mrs. Cobean. Ryan realizes the scarecrow needs another victim, soon. Jordy speaks, finally, telling them he can help.

Micki comforts Ryan when he opens up about Jimmy.

At his home, Mr. Cobean is drinking and looking at a photograph of late wife and son. He gets riled up, grabs a paper and the phone to call someone. But a noise outside spooks him, so he hangs up the phone.

Jordy tells Micki and Ryan about seeing a person in a raincoat the night his father died. He didn't see the person's face, however. He also tells them there was a scarecrow in the Cobean barn. Ryan and Micki decide to take Jordy with them to get the scarecrow. Micki notices her bag has been touched and finds her license missing. Jordy tells them his dad lost a picture before he died, too. They realize this must be how the scarecrow finds his victim. Ryan tells Micki they need to get her somewhere safe, like the Sheriff's office. They head out, unaware that Marge has been listening.

Ryan and Micki get the Sheriff to agree to let her stay there while Ryan and Jordy head to the Cobean barn. Marge hears. At the Cobeans', Marge is getting the scarecrow down when Mr. Cobean arrives and accuses Marge of being responsible for the deaths of his wife and son. He pulls his rifle on her and she pretends to be interested in him, romantically. He is wary, at first, but her words get to him and he lowers his rifle. As she goes in for a hug, Marge plunges a blade into his back, killing him.

Later, Ryan and Jordy arrive to look for the scarecrow. They find dozens of them, all hung from the rafters. Ryan has no idea which scarecrow is the one he is looking for as his flashlight beam swings around the barn. Ryan spots blood dripping and looks up, shielding Jordy from the sight of Mr. Cobeans' body, suspended from a beam.

Back at the sheriff's station, Micki tries to get the sheriff to open about anything he might now. He is a man of few words, however, so she gets nowhere. When he opens the closet to get a blanket for her, Micki spies the raincoat and hat Marge planted. Thinking he must be the one using the scarecrow, Micki pushes the cop into the closet and locks the door.

Back at the farm, Ryan finds the contract stating that Mr. Cobean had sold the farm three years ago to Marge. They rush out. Back at the inn, Marge is surprised to see Micki arrive, alive and well. Marge takes Micki upstairs and tells her to relax, then locks her in the room. Behind her, Micki is shocked when the scarecrow sits up from under the quilt on the bed. He goes after Micki, swinging the scythe again and again. Marge sits downstairs, knitting, listening to the struggle. Ryan, Jordy and the Sheriff arrive, looking for Micki and Marge leaps out and stabs the Sheriff in the shoulder with her scissors, then grabs Jordy and holds the scissors to his neck. But Ryan, thinking of how helpless he was when his brother died, leaps at her, kicking the scissors out of her hand. Jordy gets free and Ryan and Marge struggle.

NOT who you want to find in your bed.

Upstairs, Micki continues to allude the scarecrow, but just barely. When the scarecrow hacks at the door, Micki uses the moment to push him aside and crash through the broken wood. She rushes downstairs and is shocked to find the scarecrow already there, waiting. He raises the scythe  but Ryan leaps on its back. When Ryan holds the scythe, Micki grabs her license off the chest of the scarecrow and he is rendered lifeless.

Ryan goes all ninja on Marge!

Marge leaps out from the backroom and rushes to attack Micki, but Ryan stops her. In the confusion, the picture of Marge and her husband falls off the wall and onto the scarecrow. It is again animated and follows Marge, beheading her before she can kill Ryan. The pictures falls loose again and the scarecrow is again lifeless.

She wouldn't have believe Ryan if he had said "Behind you!"

The next morning, Ryan and Micki are saying goodbye to the Sheriff and Jordy. Ryan gives Jordy the baseball that his brother had given to him, then proceeds to tell the boy about his late brother.

Ryan doesn't get to stay and be a big brother to Jordy,
but he does give him the ball his brother had given to him.

On the ride home, Micki and Ryan talk. What did the scarecrow do with all the heads, she wonders. As they leave the town, a scarecrow frame in a field collapses.

Amazing final shot!


My thoughts:

One of my favorite episodes of the entire series! I love the feel of this one, the rural, autumnal setting is just great for the creepy story of killer scarecrow.

Love seeing Micki and Ryan on a mission together, outside of the store and on their own away from Jack. Also love the little bit about Jack being on the trail of yet another antique somewhere else.

The mention of Ryan's late brother is a great glimpse into his past. Ryan is definitely the type to carry such guilt over being unable to save his brother's life when they were kids. We see more of the darkness that slowly grows over Ryan in his time at Curious Goods.

Marge is also a great villain, dark and sadistic, she feigns caring for anyone around her save herself. We get a little insight into how she got this way when she mentions that the hard work of being a farmer is what killed her husband.

Also love the little bit with the townspeople. When Micki and Ryan buy the antique pump, the old men share winks, knowing they sold the item to these "city folk" for much more than it was really worth. Fun stuff.

One thing I don't get is how the scarecrow could appear in any place. When Dave Meeno shuts the door in its face, it suddenly appears inside the house. And when Micki leaves the scarecrow upstairs, it appears downstairs as soon as she does. How does it do this? I suppose we can just chalk it up to another power the items have via the curse.

Just a great, classic episode of the show. Scary, fun stuff.

Next week: "Faith Healer"