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What did you watch this week in classic TV on DVD(or Blu)?

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Bryan^H, Aug 28, 2015.

  1. bmasters9

    bmasters9 Producer

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    Cleared second go on Riptide earlier (cherry-picked to do it, though, but the second one is history); all that's left is the remainder of the third and final go, and then Riptide will be history
     
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  2. JohnHopper

    JohnHopper Screenwriter

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    This is the first part that I always associate her with.

    ttt. ttt2.
     
  3. Message #2963 of 3103 Oct 17, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
    bmasters9

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    Started on the remainder of third and final go on Riptide (1985-86); one thing you probably don't remember on that one is that it had a far different title design and far different title credits to the 1.5 seasons before (the title sequence had a bunch of computer-generated patterns involved in it, but those would be difficult to show here; you'll see them in the video of the same here included).

    First, the title (similar to what it was on the pilot on Jan. 3, 1984, but different):

    riptideseason3title.

    Then, the title credits for King, Penny and Bray (in a different font to the 1.5 seasons before):

    riptideseason3kingtitlecredit.

    riptideseason3pennytitlecredit.

    riptideseason3braytitlecredit.

    The creative credits and closing credits (as the story begins, and at the bottom of the episode) were, however, much the same as the 1.5 seasons before).

    Finally, the copyright card setup for the final season:

    riptideseason31985cannellcopyright.

    (All shots from third and final go in VEI Riptide all-in-one)

    Season 3 opening (with aforementioned patterns interspersed):

    (later in the run, from the episode "If You Can't Beat 'Em, Join 'Em" [Riptide on NBC was losing in the ratings to Moonlighting on ABC w/Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd, so they did a parody near the bottom of the run using guest stars playing similar roles to Bruce and Cybill; this video of the third-season opening has the teaser from that episode])

    And more on it:
    http://www.davidandmaddie.com/riptide/latimes-riptide.html
     
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  4. Message #2964 of 3103 Oct 17, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
    Jeff Flugel

    Jeff Flugel Screenwriter

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    Interesting changes in the opening credits...with added dated '80s graphics! They're quite long credits, too...you'd never see anything like that in this modern era, when even having a credit sequence is increasingly rare.

    I have a question for you, Ben: I know that there are some episodes in S2 and S3 with music substitutions (I know episode 2.7 - "Be True to Your School," is particularly butchered)...about how many episodes suffer from these substitutions, and how bad / obvious are the music changes (in other words, are they quite noticeable? Or would someone not as familiar with the originals perhaps not even pick up the changes?) Also, aside from the music changes, are the episodes in those later two season otherwise uncut (i.e., not syndication masters?) Thanks in advance for any info. Am thinking about picking up the later two seasons at some point...
     
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  5. bmasters9

    bmasters9 Producer

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    Good question, and I'll do the best I can to answer it! To tell you the truth, being as this has been my first time actually seeing Riptide, I have been unfamiliar with the original NBC music ("NBC music" being what the music was in the original broadcasts on the Peacock Network [NBC during Riptide's run being in the last years of its 11-feathered 1979 bird, and Riptide being one of quite a few shows in NBC's history to run entirely under one NBC logo; L.A. Law would be another, as that one would run entirely under today's bird]).

    As for the episodes in the last two seasons being uncut: the ones I've seen have generally been that way (outside of that second-season episode "It's A Vial Sort of Business," which, as stated before, was far briefer than the other second-season episodes at only 41 min. or so [and as asked before, the reasons are unknown; was it film damage, a runover from NBC's Decision '84 election coverage, what?]). Also, one 1984 episode had the Cannell logo with the camera turning around from Cannell to the typewriter; that one would not officially start until the top of 1985 (most of the 1984 first-and-second-season shows had the static shot of Cannell typing, then pulling out and throwing the paper).

    Again, glad you asked about this, and I hope this helps!
     
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  6. Jeff Flugel

    Jeff Flugel Screenwriter

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    Thanks for the info, Ben! That does help clear things up a bit.
     
  7. bmasters9

    bmasters9 Producer

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    Glad I was able to help-- hope you enjoy!
     
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  8. Message #2968 of 3103 Oct 17, 2019
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    Jeff Flugel

    Jeff Flugel Screenwriter

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    The Bermuda Depths (TV Movie - 1978)
    A troubled young man (Leigh McCloskey) returns to his childhood home in Bermuda to try and find out what happened the night his father disappeared. He meets two of his father's scientist colleagues (Burl Ives and Carl Weathers), both attempting to capture a large sea creature, as well as once again meeting his childhood playmate and crush, now grown up into a mysterious young woman (in the luscious form of 22-year-old Connie Sellecca) who seemingly lives in the sea.

    Count me as one of the many young kids / early teens who caught this TV movie during my formative years and were haunted by it for decades. Basically a melange of giant monster movie, ghost story, doomed, tragic romance and Bermuda Triangle lore, made with typical visual flair by producers Rankin and Bass. It's far from perfect, but has a strange, mystical quality that sets it apart from other Jaws ripoffs, and I still find it oddly affecting, if perhaps overlong.

    McCloskey's bland man child act gets a bit tiresome, but fits the part well enough. Sellecca is not required to do much more than look stunning and ethereal, but does both with ease, and Weathers and Ives add class and ground the proceedings. The monster effects and miniature work, by several former members of Eiji Tsuburaya's F/X team, are occasionally crude but mostly effective. This was an early release from Warner Archive's DVD-R program and looks quite nice.

    [​IMG]

    Warship

    1.1 "Hot Pursuit"
    1.2 "Nobody Said Frigate"
    Cracked into my recently arrived birthday present, Series 1 of this terrific, taut naval drama, that aired for four seasons and 45 episodes, from 1973 to 1977. The BBC received unprecedented cooperation from the Royal Navy, and access to many ships, helicopters and assorted materiel. The show features lots of exterior footage of the titular warship sailing through rough seas and carrying out assorted suspenseful missions. Plenty of stiff-upper lip acting on display here, as we follow newly-minted Commander Nialls (Donald Burton, who would go on to play a similar character in the rousing 1978 HTV children's serial, The Doombolt Chase) as he assumes command of the frigate Hero, and slowly wins over his able crew with his calm demeanor and daring decision making.

    Most of the first episode details this set-up, ending in the ship's pursuit and capture of a group of gun-runners. We see more behind-the-scenes finagling by the higher-ups in "Nobody Said Frigate," as the Hero and her crew are tasked with a top secret mission, to retrieve a defecting Russian diplomat from the coast of an (unnamed) North African country, without starting an international incident. Really liking what I've seen so far, and will likely pick up Simply Media's Series 2 release at some point (sadly, the company was not able to license the last two seasons).

    The X-Files
    1.19 "Shapes"
    4.3 "Teliko"
    There are two classes of X-Files fans: those who prefer the mythology episodes, and those who prefer the Monster of the Week format. I'm most definitely in the latter camp. "Shapes" doesn't seem to be well-liked by most fans, but I rate it pretty highly...and it's the only time that the series does its own spin on a werewolf tale. This one has some nice dreary, misty atmosphere, and an interesting slant incorporating Native American tribal beliefs and politics, with their distrust of white FBI agents realistically portrayed. Guest stars Michael Horse, Jimmy Herman and Donnelly Rhodes add some gravitas.

    "Teliko" plays like an African folktale take on "Tooms," with its body contorting, albino killer sucking the pigmentation from his victims. Lots of creepy touches in this one, and once again, we get Mulder and Scully sneaking around in dark buildings, flashlights and guns at the ready, cornering deadly monsters in their lair. Also with Carl Lumbly and Zakes Mokae.

    In Search of... - 1.15 "Amelia Earheart"
    Good episode, with plenty of live footage of the famed aviatrix, which I hadn't seen before. The second half of the episode details three possible theories about what might have happened to her after her disappearance. The second two are both plausible (that she simply crashed and her plane sunk to the bottom of the sea, and that she was picked up by a Japanese freighter, held captive on Saipan and died during her interrogation/captivity there). On the other hand, the first solution rendered is just completely wackadoo: that yes, Earheart was captured and brought back to Japan, but (here's where it gets cray cray) was rescued by a top secret commando mission prior to MacArthur's arrival in Japan and delivered safely out of the country (disguised as a nun!), subsequently assumed a new identity and lived out her years in the States, until she was discovered (by said "researcher") and publicly proclaimed by him as Earheart, despite the poor old lady's stern denouncements. Good old In Search Of... - always bringing the wild ass theories, but retaining just enough scientific credibility to leaven things with the occasional bit of common sense.
     
  9. Message #2969 of 3103 Oct 17, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
    Flashgear

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    Very interesting post as usual, Jeff! I remember seeing that TV movie Bermuda Depths, probably first run. I don't have the WAC DVD, but after reading your review I wish I could see it now. It seems that the whole Bermuda Triangle nonsense was really on overdrive in the pop culture of the late '70s. But this treatment seems to be worth a revisit, especially to oggle a young Connie Sellecca and a good cast to boot. Carl Weathers was a pro football player for the BC Lions of the Canadian Football league when I was a kid, and of course he proved to be a decent action star in movies and TV. Woody Strode was another former CFL star to go onto a successful Hollywood career. Warship sounds like an interesting show, and I see that there are at least a few episodes on Youtube.

    Jeff, it just so happens that the National Geographic Channel is airing the new 2 hour documentary Expedition Amelia on this Sunday night, October 20...famed oceanographer and explorer Robert Ballard (he who found the wreck of the Titanic in 1985, the Bismarck and Yorktown WW2 wrecks, even JFK's PT 109 in later years) mounted a search expedition this past August in the Phoenix archipelago of islands searching the deep bottom for the wreck of Amelia Earhart's Lockheed Electra, and this documentary is the result of that search. Sadly, they did not find the aircraft but plan to mount another expedition in 2021. But I think this documentary will be worth watching, regardless. Here's the promo...
     
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  10. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    Every time - and I mean *EVERY TIME* you mention watching an episode of In Search Of... I'm reminded I own a copy of the entire series and have only watched S1! It's a long time favorite and one I was excited to see receive the full series treatment yet it keeps languishing on the shelf. My copy is within very easy reach and I forget it's there when selecting something to watch. I need October to be over (Horror movie challenge - remember? - and I really like my pre-1970 horror movies) so I can get back to my normal viewing patterns. :)
     
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  11. Jeff Flugel

    Jeff Flugel Screenwriter

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    Thanks for the reply, Randall! Yes, the chance to see a young and nubile Connie Sellecca cavorting around in the ocean is reason enough to watch The Bermuda Depths...it's a nicely eerie little movie, too, with much picturesque tropical scenery.

    I certainly hope you can check out that first episode of Warship you linked to above...with your penchant for military history, you should find it of interest.

    Thanks also for the heads-up about that Amelia Earheart special following Robert Ballard's expedition to find her plane. Will look for it on Japan's Nat Geo channel, or check it out if it appears somewhere else (perhaps it will appear on the Nat Geo section of the new Disney + service.)
     
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  12. Jeff Flugel

    Jeff Flugel Screenwriter

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    Heh. I need to pick up that complete series In Search Of... set at some point. At first I was hesitant, as I thought the show might be just too dated, but I must confess that I'm really enjoying the retro vibe...and the show is generally well made and often still compelling, so I'm slowly changing my tune. Right now, YouTube has them all and it's always really easy for me to switch on my Fire TV stick and select one or two episodes right before bed. To me, ISO... is perfect October viewing - even when there are no supernatural shenanigans on display. They kind of act as spooky little bon bons in between monster movie screenings.
     
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  13. BobO'Link

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    Like you, I was a bit hesitant at first. Enough so that I purchased a copy of S1 by itself, watched it, really enjoyed it in spite of its age and sometimes dated content, and went for the entire series (got it on sale to boot!). It's been on the shelf ever since.
     
  14. Message #2974 of 3103 Oct 18, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
    Rustifer

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    Episode Commentary
    Wagon Train
    "The Pearlie Garnet Story" (S7E23)--1964

    Jim Croce left one out. Sure, you don't tug on Superman's cape, don't spit into the wind, don't pull the mask off the old Lone Ranger, but you sure as heck don't steal Charlie Wooster's kitchen utensils. Not his favorite soup ladle, not his best cast iron cornbread skillet, none of it. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's start at the beginning.

    Pearlie Garnet (Sharon Farrell), a beautiful but willful lady, is taking over the town's saloon. Drinks on the house. But in the process, Pearlie's losing her hubby, Ward Clea...er...Jed Halick (Hugh Beaumont). Pearlie's a bit of a bee-atch, and Jed's had enough. While she was with the wagon train, Charlie Wooster (Frank McGrath) never trusted her. He's been missing slabs of bacon, scoops of flour, many utensils, a pair of his favorite underpants. He's convinced it's Pearlie's doing. The menfolk on the train are falling all over themselves over her. How could anyone suspect such a red-haired, deep-cleavaged beauty? Chris Hale (John McIntire) is beside himself, No wagon master should run such a sloppy train--it's just not a good look for him. But stuff continues to go missing. The pioneers are getting restless. Clues abound--like a hairpin dropped near one of the robberies. When asked jokingly if it was his, Charlie grunts "Yeah--I just washed my hair and can't do a thing with it..." Charlie not only makes a mean chicken dumpling, but also possesses a Sam Kinison-type humor streak.

    upload_2019-10-18_11-44-14. [​IMG] [​IMG]
    A couple reasons why the menfolk like Pearlie; Charlie clears the chuck wagon after cutting the cheese; a rarely seen jet flies overhead

    Well, life goes on in the wagon train--dusty trails, dance parties at night, drunken liasons between married and unmarried wagoneers. Yep, crime, smut and filth is inexorably moving towards the West. Eventually we'll call it California. And Pearlie's leading the charge, bless her heart. Which is why Ward...er...Jed is smitten with her. But Charlie continues to point the finger at Pearlie in his garrulous way. When you get to Charlie's age--around 104--you can read folks pretty well.

    Duke (Dennis Miller) devises a way to expose her. Literally. He rips her dress off to find scads of stolen money. Human Resources would've frowned on this action, but the proof was there. She's forced to leave the train. But at least we got an eyeful of Sharon Farrell's rather voluptuous frame. Trust me--it's the highlight of the episode. Pearlie swipes Duke's gun, takes a couple of shots at him, then steals his horse. When one rips the clothes off a girl, you've got to expect consequences.

    Needless to say, Pearlie continues to lie, cheat and steal her way through town. Men fight over her, women hate her. Dogs, as far as I know, think she's okay. Running a saloon, she meets all types. "A woman is the Lord's handiwork, and must be treated gently", she exhorts. You expect her to get some comeuppance at the end, but it never happens.

    Moral: You can be a conniving, cheating wastrel--but if you've got large breasts, you'll go far.

    Notes:
    Dennis Miller was born in my neck of the woods, Bloomington Indiana, where his father was a phys ed teacher at my alma mater, Indiana University. I'm willing to bet this is of no interest to anyone but me.

    Robert Fuller and Michael Burns are the only surviving actors of this series. Frank McGrath, who looked 80, was only 64 when he died in 1967.
     
  15. Jeff Flugel

    Jeff Flugel Screenwriter

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    Great stuff as usual, Russ! Not as interested in this series once good ol' Ward Bond shuffled off this mortal coil and was replaced by John McIntire - no offense to McIntire, who I'm sure did a solid job, as always...but Bond is a hard act to follow.

    I see Miss Farrell appeared in all manner of classic westerns, cop shows, hospital dramas and even the occasional comedy. She's in a Wild Wild West episode (S3's "The Night of the Amnesiac") that I'm not sure that I've seen, plus an episode of The Lieutenant (that Gary Lockwood sure got around...) I remember her mostly for her performance as "the Little Sister" with James Garner in Marlowe (along with hotties Gayle Hunnicutt and Rita Moreno).

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Message #2976 of 3103 Oct 19, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
    Rustifer

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    Yeah, I wasn't much of a fan of this series with or without Ward Bond. Maybe it was on opposite something else I liked, or maybe it was just too dense with characters and their stories to hold my interest for more than 5 minutes.
    I saved this particular episode purely because of Sharon Farrell, who I always found to be alluring and...well...just damn good to ogle at.
    Plus, it's always startling to see Hugh Beaumont outside of his Ward Cleaver skin.
     
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  17. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    I only saw bits of Wagon Train as it came on a few minutes before we left for church on Wednesday nights (and later Sunday but opposite My Favorite Martian so I watched as much of that as possible before leaving). The one season I could have watched Wagon Train it came on opposite The Lucy Show, The Danny Thomas Show, and The Andy Griffith Show. I saw more bits 'n pieces in syndication over the years but never saw a full episode until I purchased a DVD set a few years back (a TMG set with the first 12 episodes and then 12 random from the rest of the series). I enjoyed it but nothing grabbed me enough to want to purchase more. Unfortunately, "The Pearlie Garnet Story" is not on that set.
     
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  18. Rustifer

    Rustifer Screenwriter
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    Oh gosh...I had nearly forgotten about Connie Sellecca. I should've had her on my Remember Her? list. She was a head-turner for sure.

    upload_2019-10-19_10-31-36. [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Remember John Tesh from Entertainment Tonight? He had the good sense to marry her. I bet John gets home on time every day.
     
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  19. bmasters9

    bmasters9 Producer

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    Finished Disc 1 on third-and-final-season Riptide; notable episode here was "Who Really Watches The Sunset" (OAD Tuesday, Nov. 12, 1985 on NBC), where a woman contracts an incurable disease, and then hires the Riptide detectives to find out who tried to kill her.

    Promo for that episode from WDIV Channel 4 (NBC in Detroit, MI), showing it after a fourth-season episode of The A-Team that same night called "Body Slam," that with guest star Hulk Hogan:

     
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  20. Flashgear

    Flashgear Screenwriter

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    I have Riptide (VEI "complete" series of the 3 seasons), Riptide being one of my few '80s favorites with it's wonderful comedic chemistry between the very likable trio of leading characters, it's well staged and interesting mysteries and adventures, and it's assortment of great guest stars and stunning '80s big hair beauties...and I also have Wagon Train's long run in my collection courtesy of the Timeless DVD season sets, in a mix of about half being the covered wagon tin cases and the rest the more simple (and preferred by me) plastic cases...the arched conestoga wagon shaped tin cans containing a card book containing the DVDs in pouches was a needless gimmick that I wish Timeless hadn't bothered with...but many of the season sets were later reissued in more affordable and shelf friendly plastic cases...there are many truly great episodes throughout the 8 seasons, many formulaic and unremarkable, and many absurd, but mostly entertaining episodes...a mixed bag to be sure, but with many truly extraordinary big name guest stars...I too prefer the Ward Bond years (Bond died in November 1960 while on hiatus during production of the 4th season), but I also like Stalwart John McIntire as his replacement...for me, Wagon Train is vintage TV comfort food, much like Bonanza and The Virginian...also the WB '50s Westerns...mostly without the harder edge of shows like Rawhide, HGWT and The Dakotas which I also love...I pretty much have a complete 8' tall bookcase packed with nothing but Westerns, both TV and Feature films...

    Another treasured vintage TV genre is my sitcoms...among them the Nat Hiken NYC produced sitcoms The Phil Silvers Show and Car 54, Where Are You?...one of my collecting thrills came in 2014 when Shout released the entire Phil Silvers Show seasons 1 to 4 in a complete series box set...another thrill was when Shanachie released both seasons of Car 54, Where Are You? in 2011-12...I well remember how hard it was for me to collect these shows back in the age of video tape and film trading...and now I have 200+ episodes on DVD at my beck and call...

    The Phil Silvers Show (Sgt. Bilko), was based out of the Biograph studios in the Bronx for it's first 3 seasons...an exhausted Nat Hiken (he died young at age 54 in 1968), allowed the show to move to Hollywood for it's last season at the behest of CBS...I love the "feel" of the Biograph shows and the charming neighborhood exteriors of City Island Bronx (seen mostly on Car 54, with Italian restaurants next door to Kosher meat shops), but the move to Hollywood allowed for some great moments too...and the Bilko show stayed strong in it's 4th season, with CBS wanting to renew it again for the dawn of the '60s...but Nat Hiken was determined to end the show, and after a convalescence, he began work on what would become Car 54, Where Are You?

    One of the special moments in season 4 is this one...Bilko's Secret Mission (Dec. 10, 1958)...a typically goofy but hilarious Bilko caper where the king of crap games is sent on a special mission to Yucca Flats...the Nevada Nuclear Test Range, of course, and this being the '50s, A Bomb tests are happening about once a week...Bilko and his men don't want to go...but then Bilko finds out that Yucca Flats is only 40 miles from Las Vegas...and Bilko is determined to sneak off the test range for day trips to the Vegas casinos, one step ahead of the MPs, with Cpl. Henshaw (Alan Melville) and a mysteriously "magnetized" Sgt. Ritzik (Joe E. Ross) in tow...Bilko has 40 bucks and an Air Force jeep, and Ritzik has his "magnetism" and his book "Gypsy Horroscopes and the Numbers to Play"...my screen caps from the Shout DVD...
    Bilko 1.JPG

    First stop is old Freemont Street, long before the light show canopy and gentrification was installed by corporate America...Binion's probably still had sawdust floors in 1958, maybe not...
    Bilko 8.JPG

    Bilko is overcome with emotion while surveying the scene, crying tears of joy at the prospect of high stakes gambling...instead of his usual $5 and $10 crap games back at Fort Baxter...ha, ha...
    Bilko 10.JPG

    Bilko, getting a hold of himself, tells Henshaw: "This is my Disneyland!"...that's the wide open spaces of Las Vegas Blvd. behind them...long since home to mega casino hotels cheek by jowl these days...
    Bilko 12.JPG
    Bilko 14.JPG

    And just like that...Bilko is gone!
    Bilko 15.JPG

    Henshaw finds Bilko staring blankly at one million in cool cash on display in the Golden Horseshoe...
    Bilko 16.JPG

    But Bilko and Henshaw have also lost track of Ritzik, and have to keep moving to find him and exploit his inscrutable, but winning, "magnetism" and "Gypsy Horroscopes" at the high stakes Roulette tables...
    Bilko 17.JPG

    They take the jeep over to the Sands... Bilko asks some "kid" standing outside about the hottest tables and loosest slots...patting him on the shoulder and stuffing a dollar bill in his hand as a tip...Bilko tells him: "buy yourself some smokes, kid!"...
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    It's of course the great Dean Martin in an uncredited cameo...he's amused and confused at Bilko not recognizing him and calling him "hey kid!"...but he pockets the dollar nonetheless with a shrug, ha, ha...the signs in the background show Nat "KIng" Cole and Rowan and Martin performing that week...
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    They now head over to the Riviera... Bilko 23.JPG

    They finally find Ritzik with his hot hand, and play Bilko's $40 up to over 7 grand before the MPs bust them up and drag them back to Yucca Flats...
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    Bilko is determined to get back to Vegas with Ritzik and continue to play his magnetic hand and Gypsy insider knowledge into an even bigger score...before Ritzik's mysterious magnetism wears off...which he has acquired in the Army lab...Bilko bribes a helicopter pilot to fly them back to the Riviera...and thus they arrive in the parking lot on a Piasecki Shawnee "Flying Banana" Helicopter!
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    Soon, they've played the 7 grand into 70 grand at the Roulette table, and Bilko sees his retirement from the Army and the leisure of professional gambling beckon him in his sunset years...Ritzik just wants a Hawaiian vacation without his wife...
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    Will Ritzik's magical magnetism and book of Gypsy horroscopes win the day before they bust out? You be the judge, ha, ha...
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    Oh, the joys of 1958 television!
     

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