Author Topic: On the Lam -- Episodes 113 & 114  (Read 1719 times)

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Offline Luciaphile

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On the Lam -- Episodes 113 & 114
« on: February 10, 2006, 08:20:58 PM »
No fashion notes, nothing new, sorry.

Day 18. The first episode is brought to us by John Sedwick and Francis Swann. It is also the last episode for Francis Swann so let's bid him a fond adieu. Second episode is John Sedwick and Ron Sproat.

Matthew has decided that the Old House will be his hideout. Interestingly, he knows all about the secret room in the drawing room (the one behind the bookcase). I always find this fascinating. Although he is momentarily secure, I think it's safe to say that Matthew looks dejected. Of course, his goddess has lied to him and he's being hunted down like a dog, so this is really quite a logical reaction.

Burke's chilling in his hotel suite when Mrs. Johnson happens by to borrow a cup of sugar and catch him up on all the latest gossip. He seems nonplussed to learn that Matthew killed Bill, but he's not irrational about it. It's a nice dimension to his character really. He's a cold-blooded ruthless man about a lot of things, but he's got a grasp on reality. In a way I think that makes him scarier than if he was completely nuts because even knowing in advance what Burke is all about, there are times when the charm of the character makes you forget just how far he's willing to go. There is some discussion about the certainty or lack thereof regarding Roger's guilt in the hit-and-run but there Burke isn't budging. Mrs. Johnson doesn't really seem to care too much about this. She's in it because she still somehow links Roger as the ultimately responsible party for Bill's death. That this makes no sense is irrelevant, because Burke certainly has no vested interest in pointing out the flaws in her logic. For those of you who haven't seen these episodes, it's reminiscent of Barnabas blaming Angelique for some of the more ancillary events in his life.

On any other soap the next scene would have consisted of a hot young ingenue and the aging but still attractive secondary/tertiary lead actress. There would have been some clinches and when the ingenue dropped into his luxurious hotel suite, the aging but still attractive actress would have disappeared into the bedroom. There would have been some bedroom farce shenanigans and then the two ladies would have verbally sparred in the hallway afterward. But this is DS. So Burke's hotel suite is looks like a low-rent showroom for outdated 1950s furniture. We have Mrs. J ducking into the kitchenette and David substituting for the hot young ingenue. Needless to say there are no sexual shenanigans either.

Anyhow, David's reason for being there is his utter dejection that his father isn't facing a long stretch in the big house. He also blames Roger for making his mother (David's mother, not Roger's) "sick." And young Davy, I should point out, remains firmly convinced that Roger killed Bill. He plans on asking the ghosts for their insights.

Later on at the other big house, Mrs. Johnson snoops. I'm not sure what she expects to find in the credenza in the drawing room --heck, I'm not sure what they'd keep there either, stamps? take out menus? --but she's quite into it and is taken by surprise when David catches her red-handed. He's onto her, but since he knows she dislikes his father and since he connects the dots to Burke, he's not too upset. It's a marvelous scene. Blackburn and Henesy are wonderful performers as it is but together they are genius.


David goes to consult with his ghostly friends. He's talking away to Josette's portrait when Matthew grabs hold of him. I have to say that David is the most disarming kid. I think it's the way he seems oblivious to the danger he's in. Also he's a little out there; although Matthew is way out there, he's not too quick on the uptake so there's a definite disconnect that's hugely entertaining. David wants to help Matthew; he expresses this as well as the sentiment that Roger is at fault for killing Bill. I suspect that someone was rereading or recalling the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn because what happens next is strongly reminiscent of that. Basically David persuades Matthew to stay in the Old House; David will play detective and locate the evidence to put Roger away. Despite that fact that Matthew has to know that isn't possible, he agrees to stay. David also promises to bring him food.

Day 19.

God, I love these episodes. Not much plot-wise but they're chock full of funny bits.

Roger is in the drawing room reading the paper and drinking his coffee. Vicki hovers over him being "solicitous," but Roger ain't buying. Burke phones for her and Roger smirks in that nasty way that only Roger can smirk.

We at Burke's hotel suite and he's very concerned for her. He resists her account of events for a little while but finally accepts it. Mitchell Ryan is not having a good day here. The production slate indicates this the second take which as we all know on DS is a rare, rare thing. Even with the second take he's tripping all over his lines. Vicki breaks it to him that Matthew didn't reveal anything about the manslaughter case. She also tells Burke that her loyalty to the family means she needs to take a stand and not see him again. They argue. They kiss. It is a refreshingly grown up kiss. Nothing like the pained look Moltke will have with Anthony George a year or so later. They break apart. She declares she needs to stay away.

I can't help it. I like Joan Bennett when she's playing bitchy and heaven knows Liz is being bitchy here. Normally, she's remarkably patient with David, but not today. David is much more interested in helping Matthew than he is in learning whatever it is Vicki is teaching him and he sneaks out to the kitchen second her back is turned. Liz's back is turned because she's finding out from Burke that he bought the Logansport Cannery.

It is unclear whether we missed the scene where Matthew told David he was really, really hungry or if David just lacks a sense of proportion. He loads up a bag with a ton of food and I do mean a ton.

Roger doesn't seem all that surprised about the cannery. It shouldn't be that surprising to us either. Property is mortgaged to the hilt. She's got no liquidity; Burke does. But then this is Liz who has an ostrich mentality at times. Liz declares war, which is a stirring statement except that I'm not sure what she plans to do. It's appropriate I guess that Vicki returns, announces her loyalties are with them, and apologizes again. This time Roger accepts it

Everybody, I might add, is having line problems. Lots of line problems. Even Louis Edmonds who can usually handle his costars flubbing their lines or make his flubs look natural is having problems. It's probably a plus that there is so much film footage because the acting (with the exception of Henesy and Blackburn) is lackluster.

Once again David is missing. You would think by now it would be standard operating procedure, but no, they're all busy being panicky. David reappears with his empty paper bag. The kid could lead seminars in lying as an art form. He's been feeding the birds, he claims. Uh huh.
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Offline Gothick

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Re: On the Lam -- Episodes 113 & 114
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2006, 09:01:30 PM »
Luciaphil darling, thanks for another sharply-written overview!  I just love reading what you have to say about these shows.

I really missed Francis Swann after his departure from the series.  That said, I recall finding the scene of Mrs Johnson telling Burke about the revelation of Matthew's guilt in the death of her beloved Bill Malloy strangely lacking in emotional punch.  I'm not sure what expected from Mrs J in this day's show; a vitriolic calling-down of the forces of Biblical Nemesis upon Matthew's head, perhaps; a lament for Bill's feckless faith in those no-good Collinses, perhaps; even, perhaps tears and a sense of regret for the great loneliness she feels all over again with the irrevocable fact of Mr. Malloy's death.  The little scene in Burke's room at the seedy Collinsport Inn is so much less than any of that.  The excellent scene between Mrs J and devious Davey does make up a little for the disappointment I felt here, but only partly so.

I really regret the dumbing-down of Mrs J's character.  As originally written (and I think she was more or less the creation of Francis Swann?)  she was a marvelously realistic summing-up of the kind of nosey biddy who tends to make stirring the shit her personal business in every small town.  I would have loved to have heard the original Mrs J's observations upon the 1967 antics of Barnabas and Julia...

I wonder whether something happened to the original tape of the second show, and what you're seeing is that, in fact, they were all tired and anxious to go home.  I seem to recall one of the books mentioning that at least once, there was a technical problem with a tape and they had to work on Sunday, or something, to make it up.

G.


Offline Patti Feinberg

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Re: On the Lam -- Episodes 113 & 114
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2006, 09:09:37 PM »
Quote from: Luciaphil
it's reminiscent of Barnabas blaming Angelique for some of the more ancillary events in his life.

Luciaphil...thanks so much for your Idle Thoughts. Could you state some examples of the above? Thanks!

Quote
The production slate indicates this the second take which as we all know on DS is a rare, rare thing.

Is this something the average viewer can see?? I don't remember seeing a production slate...

Patti
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Offline Luciaphile

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Re: On the Lam -- Episodes 113 & 114
« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2006, 05:22:17 PM »
Quote from: Luciaphil
The production slate indicates this the second take which as we all know on DS is a rare, rare thing.
Is this something the average viewer can see?? I don't remember seeing a production slate...

The only place I've ever seen the slates is on the MPI VHS tapes for the pre-Barnabas episodes. Before the beginning of each episode there's always a slate with the date of taping, the date the episode is scheduled to air, and the take #. Sometimes you see an actor holding the slate or it might be propped on a piece of furniture. I also like these because on rare occasions you see the actors either out of character briefly or getting into character.
"Some people ask their god for answers to their spiritual questions. For everything else, there is Google." --rpcxdr-ga

Offline Midnite

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Re: On the Lam -- Episodes 113 & 114
« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2006, 05:43:22 PM »
Quote from: Luciaphil
it's reminiscent of Barnabas blaming Angelique for some of the more ancillary events in his life.
Luciaphil...Could you state some examples of the above? Thanks!

The discussion continues here:
I don't want to get too much into it here (we could move it to Current Talk if you want)...