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Sheesh, do I have to do all the reviews in numerical order? :!nerd:

Added: Friday 14 July 2017 11:42:47 MST
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What happened to your "Men Will Die" review?

Added: Friday 14 July 2017 11:15:29 MST
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S04E05: School of Fear ★½
Original air date: October 9, 1975
Director: William Hale; Writers: Brad Radnitz, Gordon Basichis & Marcia Basichis; Music: John Parker

When Walter Randolph, a teacher at Manual High School, attempts to break up a fight between two students, he is shot dead. One of the students, Jim Riley (Don Stark), is busted, but the other, Richie Martino (Bob Hegyes), flees the scene. A few days later, Martino still has not shown up, and some other students have also gone missing. Leopold Summers (Maurice Evans), an older teacher who was fired from the school because of his disciplinary methods, has kidnapped Martino and three of his other former students and chained them to desks in a classroom at the abandoned Thomas Paine Academy where Summers himself went to school many years before. In addition to the Chicano-looking Martino, the others are the black Billy Jeffers (Erik Kilpatrick), Randy Pruitt (Mark Lambert) from the poor side of town and the mouthy Judy Harris (Barbara Stanger). Judy was reportedly the one who "ratted out" Summers after he struck a student (Jeffers) which resulted in him getting canned, but Summers says that he won't hold this against her. Summers wants to improve his captives' education on topics like world history, literature and so forth. Keller manages to track Summers down to his old neighborhood and goes to the abandoned academy where he finds the room where the kids are being held, but gets knocked out by Summers and also chained to a desk. When Keller starts to question Summers' methods, the teacher tells him to shut up. Prior to Keller's arrival, Judy got Martino to throw her purse out of the building with a message for help. It was found by some neighborhood bum, who called her father (Geoffrey Lewis) with hopes of getting a reward. The father arrives at the school with a gun and starts fighting with Summers after Judy suggests that the teacher molested her. Stone then shows up and punches Harris out. Summers escapes to the upper floors of the building and Stone pursues him, as hallucinatory audio flashbacks are heard on the soundtrack. Summers falls through a part of the floor which is rotten and dies when he hits the ground below.

EPILOG:

Stone and Keller find themselves back at Manual High. Billy, who was the only student of the kidnapped four to show interest in what Summers was trying to do, has re-entered the curriculum for his final semester. Billy says, "If old Summers thought I was worth dying for ... well, I can try." The school's principal (John Lehne), says "Some good has come out of all this." Pruitt is back and Martino might return, though Judy Harris has dropped out. As they leave the building, Stone talks about how much Summers cared for his students despite his other faults and Keller says while he was chained up, Summers had the kids listening.

REVIEW:

This show sort of has an interesting premise, which these days might form the basis for a dystopian movie like Battle Royale or The Hunger Games. But I thought it was ridiculous. One of the major problems is the students, who are supposedly around 17-18 years old. They are typical "high school students" portrayed by actors who are much older, and it shows. As of the date of the episode's broadcast, Hegyes was 21, Lambert was 23 and Stanger was 26! (I can't find a date for Kilpatrick; Stark was 24.) There is no indication how old Summers is supposed to be, but Evans was 64. Considering he sometimes walks with a cane, he seems very agile in kicking Pruitt down the stairs of the building where he lives and forcing the students to do his bidding, albeit at knife or gun point. But think -- how many times have you seen a film or TV show where someone has a gun pointed right in their face and manages to disarm the person holding the gun? You would expect the street-smart Martino to be able to do this, especially while Summers is standing right beside him in the classroom where Martino is chained up. Just because Summers is a "person of authority" doesn't mean the students have to be terrified of him! Another issue has to do with "people going to the bathroom." Summers tells them that they are "rested, fed and allowed personal hygiene." During all of these, the kids might have an opportunity to escape, though when he lets Jeffers go to the toilet, Summers makes sure that the door is locked while Jeffers is inside. Evans does give a good performance as the kindly "old-fashioned" teacher who is seriously deranged because of the death of his wife 10 years before as well as his dismissal from the school system, but it is all for nothing!

MORE TRIVIA:

- Summers drives a vintage Mercury, model "61-03," which, according to Mike Timothy, is a 1954 Mercury Monterey 2-DR Hardtop. If you watch the one scene where the camera is inside the car, Maurice Evans drives as if he is someone who is not used to driving.
- When Summers looks like he is making a eulogy for Randolph in the funeral home, he is reciting a passage from Thomas Hobbes' Of Man, Being the First Part of Leviathan, specifically Chapter XIII, Of the Natural Condition of Mankind as Concerning Their Felicity and Misery.
- It seems very odd to me that when Harris comes to the police station after Summers calls him to say that Judy is being held captive but she will not be harmed, that the one major clue to Summers' identity that might help the cops -- that he has an English accent -- is not mentioned.
- One of the books which Summers is forcing the students to read looks like it is called "Adventures in Appreciation."
- Harris's father's phone number is 362-0024.
- As Stone and Keller approach their car which is parked on the school grounds at the end of the show, a couple of students are looking in the car like they want to steal it!


Added: Friday 14 July 2017 10:34:11 MST
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"The Glass Dartboard" (cool title!) is definitely a season 4 highlight, one of the best from the season. Not only do Stone and Keller have to catch a sniper psycho but also need to put up with the bureaucratic B.S. of their superior. Tensions are certainly high here. I can't remember what the PERT did but I've worked at companies where I had to deal with crap like this. Like Stone, I like to come in and get my work done. It frustrates me to no end when there are deadlines we need to meet and instead of just letting us do the job we were hired to do we get sidetracked by having to participate in various B.S. sessions. Then we get presented with graphs and charts, bars and lines, percentages and other numbers. Things that I couldn't give a rat's rear end about because they don't expedite my work but only slow it down and waste my time. It's all just clutter and mindless overhead. I always say that less is more.

Added: Thursday 13 July 2017 22:02:45 MST
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I have revamped the format of the reviews. See this page for an example:

http://www.thestreetsofsanfrancisco.info/sosf-4.htm

It will take a while to revise what I have already done, aside from season one, which will require a major overhaul already.


Added: Wednesday 12 July 2017 15:01:21 MST
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In the PERT show, Keely was obviously ahead of his time, much to the annoyance of men in the department who found his methods to be counter-productive. But I dunno how advanced computers of the day were. For example, Keely tells Keller to check out the 2,500 people who work in the building. Then in the next scene we see Keller with Stone in their car and Keller holding a large pile of printouts (not a "paperless" solution already), which suggests that they got this information very quickly with the help of computers. I don't think SOSF was like Five-Zero where you can log into a Supercomputer and, starting with a facial recognition search, come up with obscure information in a few seconds like the results of a suspect's driving test 20 years ago. I think that Keller got this printout via the manager of the building (so some time was left out here), not through any facilities at the police station, but you have to wonder if this list of past and present employees would be so detailed and all-inclusive, even if the building is only a year old.

Added: Wednesday 12 July 2017 07:56:05 MST
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S04E03: No Place to Hide ★★★
Original air date: September 25, 1975
Director: Virgil W. Vogel; Writer: Robert Malcolm Young; Music: Richard Markowitz

When a young woman is shot dead in a laundromat, Stone and Keller find themselves involved with the world of gangs at the fictional and nasty Holton Prison, including those outside who have been paroled but have connections to two bosses in the jail, Carl Metzger (Todd Martin) of the White Brothers and Lafayette Delacroix (Ji-Tu Cumbuka), leader of the black Cadre. Jennifer O'Brien, the murdered woman, was refusing to co-operate in a plan devised by Metzger to smuggle drugs into the prison via her incarcerated husband Robert (Michael Bell). Taking advantage of the fact that Robert now feels his life is over because of his wife's death, Delacroix slips him a shiv and tells him to knock off Metzger, but O'Brien himself is murdered. (Metzger and Delacroix are surprisingly chummy in a meeting in the prison shower room later which suggests that the murder of O'Brien was planned between the two of them.) The next prospect for Metzger's smuggling plan is Lou King (Paul Carr), who is in Holton for embezzlement. King's wife Rita (Stefanie Powers) is visited by Holton parolee Jack Constantine (Chris Robinson, giving a totally slimy performance) who convinces her to co-operate if she wants her husband to remain healthy. Keller enlists the help of Pepper Collins (Stan Haze), a black guy out on parole from Holton who he has had dealings with in the past, to give him the scoop on members of the White Brothers who are possible suspects in Jennifer O'Brien's murder. Collins is only to glad to co-operate to "get back at the honkies." Rita, who was pals with Jennifer O'Brien, meets with Constantine at some out-of-the-way location which looks like a garbage dump to discuss the dope smuggling. Joe Max (Ben Frank), another ex-con from Holton who Constantine has "contracted" to knock off Collins also shows up and is shot dead by Constantine when he complains about his assignment. Rita flees the scene but some guy at the dump makes a note of her car license plate, which leads Stone and Keller to her. Rita refuses to talk unless Stone makes a deal to have her husband released, otherwise he is as good as dead. Stone makes the deal with a judge late in the evening and he and Keller go to see Rita to tell her, just as Constantine, who has broken into her place, is threatening her with a knife in a sequence which seems out of a slasher film. Constantine is taken away and soon after this, Rita spills the beans. It is an odd coincidence that Metzger has the same last name as Tom Metzger, described by Wikipedia as an "American white supremacist, skinhead leader and former Klansman [who] founded White Aryan Resistance [and] was a Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1970s."

EPILOG:

Stone and Keller escort the Kings to a bus depot in downtown San Francisco which will take them to the airport and a new life under the Witness Protection Program. Keller gets to imitate Marlon Brando in The Godfather (not very well) when he says that Rita made "an offer that [Stone] couldn't refuse." As they are leaving the scene, Stone tells Keller that King's new name is "John Louis Smith," which Keller thinks is pretty lame.


Added: Wednesday 12 July 2017 07:14:08 MST
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I was curious those who watched The Glass Dartboard Streets SF. Did you like Keely's PERT chart to find the perpetrator? Keely was ahead of his time.
Enjoyed I Ain't Marchin'Anymore. Keller was the perfect undercover man. Steve attended Berkeley a younger man, and seemed to be a progressive type. He had some empathy for the draft dodgers but Keller had a job to do.


Added: Tuesday 11 July 2017 21:22:22 MST
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Big fan of The Glass Dart Board. That PERT chart makes me laugh every time. Truax is an unlikely criminal to look at him. I love the episode because Stone becomes very angry at Neely and his methods. They almost apprehended Truax in the night helicopter patrol. The nut job file and letters was a quick way to end the episode. Truax looked like a lonely man who could have used some lovin'. On a conventional 4 star scale,I would give The Glass Dart Board 3.5 stars.

Added: Tuesday 11 July 2017 16:41:44 MST
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S04E02: The Glass Dart Board
Original air date: September 18, 1975
Director: Harry Falk; Writer: Sean Baine

Martin Truax (Lou Frizzell) is taking shots at the 35-story Balboa Towers using a high-powered German "Handel" rifle. As we find out later, he is aggrieved because his property was expropriated to get land for the building, and he feels he was not compensated enough. Truax wants $1 million or he will keep up his attacks on the place, even threatening to "destroy" it. When one of Truax's shots kills an accountant, the cops get even more interested than just investigating the shooting angle. Unfortunately, Stone has to contend with an old pal of his, Jacob Keely (Patrick Wayne), who has been promoted to captain while Devitt is on sick leave. Keely is a "squint," according to Keller, meaning someone who never leaves the office and squints when he goes outside and sees the sun. Stone uses tried-and-true methods including triangulation from high up in the building to try and catch Truax, but finds himself constantly frustrated by Keely, who micro-manages things and interferes with Stone's work. Keely uses a management technique for complex programming he developed called P.E.R.T. (Program Evaluation and Review), which consists of a large flowchart where data relating to the case is entered. When Keely shows this method to the men, some of them roll their eyes. Stone and Keller have a good chance of capturing Truax one evening, but Keely takes command in the helicopter being used to follow the suspect and sends everyone in the wrong direction. This causes Stone to go totally ballistic, telling Keely that he is "what went wrong" with the operation, because he let the shooter escape. Shortly after this, using P.E.R.T., Keely has a suspect named Harlan Jeffers (Paul Pepper) picked up, and everything about him falls into place except the fact that he does not own the rifle being used. With the help of the Balboa Towers' building manager Eli Mason (Joel Fabiani), Stone and Keller add to the lists they already have of people connected to the skyscraper, including those who were responsible for the building's construction. Their last resort is the architectural firm which designed it, and there they find a "nut file" with letters from cranks including Truax, who was complaining bitterly about having to sell his property. Stone and Keller go to Truax's place, where the shooter is undone by the fact that his 1953 Lincoln (license number AXO 995) won't start and his Airedale Terrier dog named Scruff. Truax ends up wounded by Keller and is taken into custody.

EPILOG:

Devitt returns from the hospital and Keely is promoted to Research and Planning. Keely tells Stone that he is an example of The Peter Principle, having risen to the level of his own incompetence. Stone says the fact Keely is being promoted would negate this criticism, suggesting that Keely planned this all along.


Added: Tuesday 11 July 2017 15:44:15 MST
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