The Invaders Episode Guide - Season One

The Invaders Episode Guide -- Season One ... In COLOR!

Copyright 2009-2015 by Mike Quigley. No reproduction of any kind without permission.


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RATINGS:
★★★ = One of the very best episodes, a must-see.
★★★ = Better than average, worthy of attention.
★★ = Average, perhaps with a few moments of interest.

1. Beachhead ★★★ (Broadcast Version); ★★★ (Extended Version)
Original air date: January 10, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

The beginning of the show is full of iconic scenes which will be used in the main titles of every episode. While driving home late at night, architect David Vincent (Roy Thinnes) takes a wrong turn and stumbles across an abandoned diner in the middle of nowhere. He tries to fall asleep at the side of the road and is awakened by a flying saucer landing. Following this, he hastens to the Santa Barbara police to tell them what happened, but Lieutenant Ben Holman (J.D. Cannon) dismisses Vincent's ravings. Vincent's architectural partner Alan Landers (James Daly) shows up at the station and only after Vincent protests loudly do they all return to the scene of the encounter where things are now much different. Nearby they find a husband and wife with the last name of Brandon (Skip Ward and Bonnie Beecher). They are camping in the area on their honeymoon and neither heard nor saw anything the night before. Both of them have peculiar deformed little fingers. Vincent later returns to confront the couple just as they are preparing to leave. They refuse to answer his questions, and the husband almost kills Vincent with a rock, but suddenly starts to glow red. Vincent wakes up later in a hospital where he fears that he is under The Invaders' control. He freaks out, but Landers shows up, saying that he checked Vincent in under a phony name to avoid publicity. An old lady (Ellen Corby) is seen in the visitors' room where Landers talks to Vincent, telling him to take some time off from work. Vincent returns home, but wakes up in the middle of the night to find his apartment on fire. The old lady suddenly appears like an apparition, and Vincent barely escapes with his life. Using information that Landers got from Holman, Vincent travels to the town of Kinney, California, between San Louis Obispo and Bakersfield, where the Brandons supposedly live at 285 Front Street. He doesn't find them, but he finds a smirking cop, Lou Carver (John Milford) and a woman named Kathy Adams (Diane Baker), who are among the few people left in the town which has been bought up by a Mr. Kogan. Vincent snoops around the local power station, and finds some mysterious equipment. His presence there alerts Invaders located in nearby Bakersfield, who leave for Kinney immediately in a large truck. In the local coffee shop run by Mr. Kemper (Vaughn Taylor), where two teenage girls are dancing to music inspired by "Louie Louie," Vincent calls Landers and tells him to get to Kinney ASAP. Kathy drops into the cafe and talks about her husband who, like Vincent, was "seeing things." Kathy tries to discourage Vincent from investigating further because, it turns out, she is an alien, but one who says "we're not all like that" ... but Aunt Sara, who is staying with her, turns out to be the old lady who met Vincent in the hospital! Landers eventually shows up in Kinney, but Vincent just misses meeting him. Landers is directed to the power plant where he meets a bad end, put in one of the Invaders' descending tubes and murdered. Vincent finds his friend dead, and is clubbed on the head by Carver. The next day, Holman shows up and orders Vincent released. He tells Vincent "for your own sake, let it end here." Vincent replies, just before he leaves town, "I wish I could."

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

The North American DVD set of the show's first season contains an extended version of the pilot episode which is 60 minutes long, as opposed to the broadcast version which is about 11 minutes shorter. The original pilot is better (see below).

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EXTENDED PILOT SCENES:

On the final disc of the season one DVD set, there is an "extended pilot" which contains several scenes which fill in some of the gaps in the broadcast version:

  • After Vincent and the others leave the Brandons in the broadcast version, he immediately returns to confront them at night time. In the extended version, there is a sequence inserted here where Vincent sketches the space ship at Landers' place, and the two of them talk about his experience. Vincent says "They're here, maybe just to look us over. I hope that's all." Landers says of the last time he heard Vincent carry on like this: "It takes me back 12 years to the young man in an army hospital in Korea. He was always talking about what 'they' were doing." Since 12 years before would have been 1955, and since the Korean War ended in 1953, they must have been part of some American occupation force. This is the only explanation given as to why Vincent is so hyped up about his close encounter, but it really doesn't tell us much!
  • In the extended version, after Landers leaves Vincent in the hospital visitors' room, the old lady approaches Vincent, telling him "you are not alone," adding that she has had contact with the aliens from an early age. She shows Vincent a copy of a local newspaper with a large headline "Architect Claims Invasion from Outer Space." She tells him that the aliens are "friendly little creatures." After Vincent leaves the room, we see her hands, which have deformed pinky fingers.
  • As Landers is driving Vincent home from the hospital, there are minor trims to the scene in the car in the broadcast version. Landers just tells Vincent about the information about Brandon he got from Holman, and drops Vincent off, saying "I want to believe you."
  • In the extended version after the fire in Vincent's apartment, Vincent goes to a pay phone where he calls Landers, saying that he has to break his promise to take it easy, and is instead going to Kinney. This whole sequence is cut out of the broadcast version.
  • After Vincent arrives in Kinney, he beeps his horn twice in front of a gas station. In the extended version, the first time, there is no sound, but there is the second time. In the broadcast version, he beeps only once and there is no sound. There are other minor edits to this sequence in the broadcast version as Vincent gets out of his car. In the extended version, Vincent goes into the town motel, which is run by Kathy, and calls out for someone, but having no response, he goes back out on the street where he runs into her. There is a goof here: when Vincent is seen walking down the street, his shadow is pretty normal (this is only in the extended version), but when seen from above in both versions, his shadow stretches for many feet in front of him, as if the sun had almost gone down. This is pretty creepy, actually.
  • Just before the end credits in the extended version, Vincent takes one of the demolition signs from Kogan's company which is on the motel. The extended version's credits do not list any of the actors, just people involved in the production. Their names appear over a shot of Vincent driving out of town.

2. The Experiment ★★
Original air date: January 17, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Professor Curtis Lindstrom (Laurence Naismith), an astrophysicist who has evidence regarding The Invaders and their plans to take over the earth, has just boarded a plane when he looks out the window and sees one of the ground crew has an extended pinky. He freaks out and exits the plane, which explodes after it takes off, killing 40 people. Later, after listening to Lindstrom rant, saying things like "The Invaders are real, they are here amongst us and they intend to wipe us out like bugs," his doctor, Paul Mailer (Harold Gould) arranges for him to go to a hospital to relax. Of course, there are Invaders on the hospital staff. Vincent arrives in Covington, Pennsylvania where he is picked up by a Priest (Dabbs Grier) supposedly taking him to Lindstrom's home, but the Priest and the cab driver are both Invaders. Vincent escapes and makes his way to Lindstrom's hospital room where he urges the old man to go into hiding. This happens, with the old man relocating to the nearby Pine Cone Inn, but "government agents" (yet more Invaders), pretending that they will escort Lindstrom to an upcoming conference, find out where he is from the professor's son Lloyd (Roddy McDowall). They track him down to the motel and shortly after murder him in a car "accident." Vincent finds out from the motel owner that Lindstrom mailed the package containing all the alien evidence to his son's New York City address, so Vincent heads there. After persuading the landlord to let him into the room, Vincent looks over the material which contains photographs and sworn statements from people who have witnessed alien activity. Vincent phones Lloyd who is still in Covington, but under the influence of the Priest who has induced splitting headaches in him. To control this, Lloyd has become addicted to "not of this earth" painkillers, supplied by the Priest. Vincent heads to Washington, D.C., ostensibly to visit an old CIA buddy to give the professor's package to, but is tricked, and has an encounter with the Priest as well as Lloyd who is repeating a mantra about how "my father was an enemy." Vincent is taken to an Invader hideout where the aliens have a special brainwashing device where he is placed in this triangular coffin-like chamber and radiated with pulsating lights and sounds (again, under the control of the Priest). Vincent encounters Lloyd between sessions and throws away Lloyd's medication. During Vincent's next treatment, Lloyd goes to the room with the machinery. There he picks up a chair and throws it into the wall behind one of the men operating the equipment (into a computer controlling everything?). This causes the entire area to erupt in a huge conflagration which allows Vincent and Lloyd to escape, while killing the Priest and all the others inside. As the two of them exit the building, Lloyd expires, telling Vincent, "You must stop them."

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Pretty good up to near the end, then it gets totally ridiculous with the fire.

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3. The Mutation ★★
Original air date: January 24, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Following reports of a saucer crash and strange glowing lights, reporters, the Air Force and David Vincent find themselves in the border town of Rosario, Texas. As the show begins, Vincent has hired two Mexicans to drive him to the crash site, but they bonk him over the head and steal his money and watch, leaving him to die. Vincent struggles through the barren landscape, eventually seeing the saucer in the distance. But after the main titles, he is back in Rosario with no explanation as to how he returned there. From what we see later, it is a VERY long way from the town to the site, which is in the middle of nowhere. In Rosario, where he faces hostility from the locals and skepticism from US Air Force intelligence officer Fellows (Lin McCarthy), Vincent is almost run over and killed by a couple of punks, but saved by sleazy freelance newspaperman Mark Evans (Edward Andrews), who is an Invader. Evans introduces Vincent to Vikki (Suzanne Pleshette), a stripper in a local bar, who says she also saw the saucer when she drove off the road by mistake recently (again, she would have had to drive a LONG time off the main highway to get to this point, taking a narrow dirt road -- Vincent seemingly doesn't pick up on this). After getting paid in advance for her time, Vikki says she will accompany Vincent back to the crash site. As Vikki and Vincent make their way the next morning to the site, there is a serious sense of unease between the two of them. When they get close to the ship, Vikki suddenly has a change of heart and tries to direct Vincent away, because she is also an Invader, but one with "feelings" who is not like her compadres who are trying to get the crashed ship functional again. It seems Vikki is a member of a sub-set of the alien race, whose father stood up against "them" (i.e., typical alien bad guys). She tells Vincent that "life means something to us." After being shot at and unsuccessfully hunted by the men on the ship, the two of them make their way from the mountains where the crash site is located and trudge through the desert, reaching a ranch house where a Mexican couple live. Vikki gets more friendly towards Vincent, telling him "Before I met you, I was ashamed of caring because there was no one to care for," but he is totally focused on his mission and leaves her, going to a watering hole named Dos Lobos where he phones Fellows, telling him that he now has proof of the crashed ship. When Vincent returns to the ranch house, The Invaders who were chasing them have arrived and knocked out the husband and wife. Vikki pleads with The Invaders not to kill Vincent, but they don't care, so she runs outside to warn Vincent and is immolated (producer Alan Armer's word for The Invaders glowing red and burning up). Vincent shoots back, killing all three of The Invaders, just as their now-fixed ship takes off and vanishes into the distance. Fellows soon shows up, but there is no evidence of any kind that he can take back to Washington with him.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

The episode is OK, if one can overcome its serious topographic issues.

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4. The Leeches ★★★
Original air date: January 24, 1967 -- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Vincent, whose interest in and expertise concerning Invaders is seemingly already well-known, arrives at the Maricopa, Arizona airport to meet with Warren Doneghan (Arthur Hill), president of Jet Age Electronics. Doneghan is paranoid because several other smart guys in fields like oceanography, mathematics, psychology and military science have mysteriously disappeared recently and he feels he may be next. One of these men, Doctor Markham (Theo Marcuse) is shown at the beginning of the show escaping from the Invaders' headquarters, which is located underground in an abandoned mining camp in the desert. Later, it is learned that The Invaders' extracting information from Markham's brain via their special equipment has turned him into a vegetable. Vincent's solution to Doneghan's dilemma is surprising: "Let it happen. Let them take you, follow them." Doneghan's best friend and war buddy Tom Wiley (Mark Richman), who is also his chief of security, thinks that Vincent is nuts. But Vincent has method in his madness, as we shall see. Using a GPS-like device in a medal Doneghan is wearing around his neck which has a 40 mile range, Wiley and Vincent attempt to follow him, but the Invaders are obviously on to their plan, because the engine in the car the two them are using suddenly immolates! Predictably, Doneghan is grabbed and taken to the mine where his brainwashing begins. Wiley and Vincent follow by helicopter and land in the desert close by. The Invaders are typically stupid in terms of security. They have some television-like gizmo which allows them to see the barren wastes nearby, but they do not see Vincent and Wiley approaching. Vincent and Wiley manage to get close to the mine, knock out the guards and then go underground. Doneghan and one of the other brainy types who have been kidnapped are rescued, but the leader of The Invaders pushes an auto-destruct button, and Wiley is killed in the ensuing collapse of the mine. Of course, when people arrive later from Washington to investigate, there is nothing to be seen; they merely conclude there was "some kind of plot. As Doneghan leaves Vincent at the end of the show, he tells him, "Don't quit."

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

This show gives an interesting glimpse into The Invaders' sinister methods of torture to extract information with a fancy chair and headset connected to colorful pulsating graphics. There are some topographic issues with locating Doneghan.

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5. Genesis ★★★
Original air date: February 7, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Newport, Rhode Island motorcycle patrolman Hal Corman (Philip Pine) stops a station wagon for a broken headlight and gets suspicious about what is in the back of the car, which turns out to be a "creature not of this world." The driver of the car applies the CHIND, but Corman ends up in hospital in a catatonic state. His wife Joan (Louise Latham) is upset at the presence of fellow cop Greg Lucather (John Larch) at the hospital, who has taken charge of the case. Something happened with Lucather in the police department which resulted in her husband being sent out in the field (and to his death) rather than having a desk job. Vincent shows up soon, likely after reading about the case in the newspaper, but Lucather tells him to get lost. Vincent then seeks out Joan and convinces her to let him try to get through to her husband. Dr. Grayson (Frank Overton), in charge of Corman's recovery, warns this may not turn out well, and it does not, with Corman freaking out. As he is told once again by Lucather to butt out, Vincent warns him that a guard should be placed on Corman's room. Later, a cop shows up at Vincent's hotel room to say that Corman is dead ... but this cop is an Invader! The two of them fight in the hotel parking lot as the cop tries to take Vincent away, and Vincent is saved by Lucather who shows up and shoots the bogus cop, causing him to immolate. Finally Lucather realizes that maybe Vincent knows what he is talking about. For some reason, this phony cop drove to the hotel in the car which Corman had pulled over, and it is tracked down to Selene Lowell (Carol Rossen) who works at the nearby Newport Sea Lab. When they visit her, she tells them that anyone from the lab could have used the car, including the boss of the place, Dr. Linnear, who fell ill the night before and is now missing. The lab is engaged in top secret research, including creation of life from running electrical current through a solution of sea water, amino acids and other compounds, similar to "primordial conditions." Lowell and Dr. Ken Harrison (William Sargent) are the only two employees from the previous regime still working at the lab after Linnear took over several months ago. As Vincent and Lucather leave the lab with Lowell, who should be standing in the background than Dr. Grayson from the hospital, who is an Invader, and is controlling Harrison's mind with a special device. Back at the police station, Lucather gets a call from Joan Corman, saying before her husband died, he told her that a building on the other end of the Knight Street ferry is connected with the case. This does not make any sense, since Corman was nowhere near this location when he stopped the car, but Lucather is convinced that it was Joan calling him. After Lucather leaves, Vincent realizes this is a scam, and follows him to the warehouse. There the two of them unsuccessfully fight with Invaders and are just about to be subjected to torture via these descending glass tubes. Back at the lab, Harrison and Grayson are going to try and regenerate Dr. Linnear, whose body on a stretcher resembles a bunch of mutated pulp (this is what Corman saw in the back of the station wagon). The body is placed in a huge tank of water where enough electricity will be applied to black out most of Newport. Just as this power is turned on, the torture tubes at the regeneration centre stop descending and Vincent and Lucather hurry back to the lab after locking The Invaders inside the building. There they overcome Grayson and his minions, killing the doctor and disabling the lab's generators so the almost reconstituted Linnear is reduced to a bloody mush. Lowell is emotionally so overcome by all this that at the end of the show she ends up in the hospital where she will be recuperating for some time. Lucather, who is now Vincent's pal, wonders if he should go to the FBI to report what he saw, but there is little evidence because The Invaders are all gone and the lab was destroyed in a fire.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Though there are a few rough edges, this is a very good show which reveals much about The Invaders' world.

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6. Vikor ★★★
Original air date: February 14, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

George Vikor (Hawaii Five-O's Jack Lord) is a Korean war hero who received the Presidential Medal of Valor. But he is also a very bitter man. Despite the hooplah when he returned home to Fort Scott, Florida with "a wooden leg and a plate in his head," Vikor could not get money to fund his company and he was jerked around with a lot of "phony promises." Despite this, the company which he established has grown to a major organization manufacturing industrial machinery. More recently, Vikor has made a deal with the devil, letting The Invaders use the security building at his plant to house their regeneration chambers, among other things. In exchange for this, Vikor expects to become a "master" once The Invaders take over the planet. But The Invaders' leader, the slimy Mr. Nexus (Alfred Ryder, in the first of three such roles on the show) has other ideas. Vincent shows up applying for work after reading news reports of a telephone lineman who accidentally saw aliens being regenerated at the plant and got the CHIND treatment. Using the pseudonym of Daniel Baxter, Vincent is sent away, but soon after gets hired as chauffeur for Vikor's attractive wife Sherri (Diana Hyland) who has serious problems with boozing and speeding. Vincent snoops around the plant and gets caught, coming up with some lame excuse of how "all buildings look the same." Vikor, who throws his weight around with everyone including the local cops, manages to get Mr. Nexus to overlook this. Vincent takes Sherri into his confidence, telling her what her husband is really up to, which is not good for Sherri's health, or his own. As the show comes to a close, Nexus decides that like Vincent, Sherri is a liability and, over her horrified husband's protests, arranges for her to be killed in a staged suicide. Vincent manages to save her, and knowing the The Invaders are listening via a not-hidden microphone, sets up Vikor himself as the fall guy: "The government wants you to remain undercover. You're the key man, George, the only one who can help destroy them."

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Intense acting by the principals (Lord, Ryder, Hyland, Thinnes) makes this one of the better episodes of the series.

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7. Nightmare ★★★
Original air date: February 21, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Vincent finds himself in the small town of Grady, Kansas, investigating the case of Ellen Woods (Kathleen Widdoes), a local high school teacher who was recently attacked by a swarm of locusts after she saw "a box with dials and things that made a loud, whiny noise" in a local farmer's barn. At Ellen's boarding house, a couple of old biddies living across the hall from her room tell Vincent that Ellen has gone away, and soon after he is threatened by her boyfriend Ed Gidney (James Callahan). Vincent then makes his way to the house of Ellen's boss, the seemingly kindly school principal Oliver Ames (Robert Emhardt) who says that Ellen is now boarding with him to keep her from the limelight. Ellen appears and says that she will talk, and Vincent asks her some questions, but she gets very agitated, and Vincent is told by Ames to leave. Ed and two of his friends track Vincent down to the town diner and beat him unconscious. Shortly after this, Constable Ned Gabbard (William Bramley), who is the top cop in Grady, takes Vincent out of town, but before he can be left at the side of the road in the middle of nowhere, Vincent grabs the steering wheel, forces the car off the road and makes a run for it through a corn field. Ellen, who is reacting to the return of the locusts, instigated by Gabbard to take care of the escaping Vincent, flees from Ames' house, saying this will prove what she saw was real. By chance, as she is driving, she sees the fleeing Vincent, whom she joins, and the two of them come upon a silo where there is some Invader-like electronic devices and a glass aquarium tank full of butterflies who devour a piece of meat like piranha fish. Returning to town, a somewhat foolish move, Vincent narrowly misses getting caught by Gabbard again. He makes his way to Ed's house as Ames and Miss Havergill (Jeanette Nolan), another old biddy who wants Ellen to keep her mouth shut, get ready to take Ellen to the funny farm in a nearby community after chloroforming her. Ed, who has been denied a final farewell with Ellen, returns home to find Vincent there. He still distrusts Vincent until he calls the phone operator to inquire about the sanitarium where Ellen is being taken, only to discover that there is no such place. The two of them then pursue Ellen to the farm where she saw the equipment at the beginning of the show and where she is going to be terminated. The farmer, Ira Danielson (William Challee) is shot dead and immolates, as does Gabbard, who is attacked by another bunch of carnivorous butterflies. Ames and Havergill rush to the silo where they blow it up with themselves in it, once again eliminating evidence of Invaders. When all the fuss has died down, Vincent wants Ellen and Ed to talk to the appropriate authorities about what happened, but they tell him they just want to keep quiet about everything and get on with their lives. Vincent says OK.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

A very good episode, full of quirky people played by some well-known character actors, with Vincent up against major odds in the "small town from hell."

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8. Doomsday Minus One ★★
Original air date: February 28, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Major Rick Graves (William Windom) is in charge of security at the Utah Proving Grounds Test Area where an underground nuclear blast is scheduled soon in conjunction with the Atomic Energy Commission. Vincent has been in touch because he is "supposed to be an authority on these people [Invaders]." After the go-between the two of them, a man named Spence (Tom Palmer), disappears because he is murdered, Vincent shows up and is given a job almost immediately as "a member of [the base's] engineering staff." Vincent finds out that General Theodore "Ted" Beaumont (Andrew Duggan), the commander of the base, a decorated veteran of two wars and Graves' boss, is meeting with aliens, specifically one Mr. Tomkins (Wesley Addy). Vincent snoops around and gets himself in trouble, with the result that two men from the Department of Justice (both Invaders) arrive to take him away. Vincent manages to escape from them just as they are about to arrange an "accident" at Greylock Crater, which plays a major part in this story. Despite the fact that this location is far away, Vincent, who is handcuffed, manages to get back on the base with Graves, who has been giving his walking papers by Beaumont and is still there! The Invaders convince Beaumont to move the time for the atomic bomb's detonation to noon the next day, which he does after some reluctance. The Invaders intend to detonate an anti-matter bomb at the same time as the atomic bomb. According to Tomkins, the anti-matter bomb will kill up to a hundred million people, but Beaumont thinks that, as a result, the world will think that the atomic bomb was responsible for this and bring an end to nuclear war. (Beaumont regrets sending thousands of people to their deaths during his military career, including his own son.) After the two simultaneous explosions, Beaumont intends to expose The Invaders, though we learn later that the evidence to do this has all been destroyed. Vincent tells Beaumont that The Invaders are only interested in the "destruction of mankind, the takeover of the planet" and that the anti-matter bomb will cause the earth to be blown off its axis! Since there are mere minutes before the anti-matter bomb's detonation, Beaumont, Graves and Vincent drive quickly to its detonation point. Beaumont, who becomes gravely wounded during a firefight with The Invaders, drives the truck containing their bomb to the place where Mr. Tomkins and his crew are located. There is a huge blast, but Vincent and Graves are close by, and do not suffer any ill effects (and neither does the earth), which makes no sense at all. As the show closes, once again, there is no evidence remaining and an official investigation says "there was attmpted sabotage by [an] enemy unknown."

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Potentially a good story, but the complexities of the two bombs exploding makes for a very confusing plot.

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9. Quantity: Unknown ★★
Original air date: March 7, 1967-- Music: Richard Markowitz

SUMMARY:

After an airplane crashes in a mountainous area, there are no bodies found, but a mysterious lightweight metal cylinder is, and it is shipped off to Sperrick Laboratories for analysis. (Unknown to us at this point, the cylinder contains instructions on how The Invaders can take over the world.) On its way there, two Invaders, including William Tallman of Perry Mason fame, kill the driver of the delivery vehicle, but are foiled when more cops and security types show up. Tallman's character flees. Having read about all this in the papers, Vincent shows up at the lab and wants to see this cylinder, which is being analyzed by metallurgist Diane Oberly (Susan Strasberg). Vincent suggests making a duplicate of the cylinder (not literally, just something resembling it), which Oberly says can be done in a couple of hours. They ship this off to a company in Cleveland, hoping to trap The Invaders who will grab the parcel somewhere along the way, but Tallman tips off a guy at the airport who was about to pick it up and Vincent ends up with egg on his face. Lieutenant Farley (Douglas Henderson) of the local police says that Vincent is a "full-time dedicated crackpot." Oberly is more sympathetic to Vincent, even though she says she is keeping her mouth shut because she gets the feeling that she is being watched. One of the security guards at the plant, Harry Swain (James Whitmore), thinks that Vincent is an Invader, and almost shoots him. It turns out that Swain's wife and child were killed by some visitors from outer space. Vincent is sympathetic. Oberly thinks that it is odd that Swain came to work for Sperrick only a few months ago, and has been obsessed with the cylinder ever since it arrived. Swain goes kind of crazy, wanting to steal the cylinder and get it to a Colonel Griffiths in New Orleans who is in military intelligence. He and Vincent sneak back to the plant and grab the cylinder away from Oberly, who is there late at night testing it. So far she has found that it is made of a metal which doesn't correspond to anything on earth. When A.J. Richards (Milton Seltzer), the boss of the lab, shows up at Oberly's invitation to see what she has learned so far, Swain shoots him. More security types arrive soon, and Swain is seemingly killed when he is cornered in the lab, which bursts into flames. Vincent now has the cylinder and takes it to Griffiths, who turns out to be Tallman. Not only that, Swain is still alive, and hanging out in Griffith's office. Vincent shoots Griffiths dead, and is pursued by Swain outside the office. When Swain falls over a high wall which is part of a fountain, he burns up, taking the cylinder with him.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Not bad, but the ending is unnecessarily drawn out. Plenty of suspense, with the viewer kept guessing who might be an alien.

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10. The Innocent ★★★
Original air date: March 14, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Captain Mitchell Ross (Dabney Coleman), connected with "Project Hawk," is preparing to testify about aliens before the Peterson Committee when he finds that certain files are missing from a cabinet at Clement Air Force Base. Shortly after this, an MP enters the room and asks Ross to come to a meeting with Captain Gardiner. There being no reason for this, Ross grabs his gun and shoots the threatening MP, who burns up. Ross sends Sgt. Walter Ruddell (Robert Doyle) after Vincent, who is in "a decaying lobster port" in Maine trying to track down Nat Greely (William Smithers), a drunken fisherman who witnessed a spaceship landing and possesses one of their weapons. When Vincent is brought back to Washington via a subpoena, he and Ross engage in a screaming match, concluding that without evidence, like the weapon Greely possesses, their case is worth nothing. Vincent returns to Maine and tries to contact Greely through his wife Helen (Katherine Justice) just as two aliens (Harry Lauter and Frank Marsh) are also trying to find her husband by scamming her with news of a bogus inheritance. Vincent contacts Greely, but the two aliens get to him after threatening his wife and son Nat (Johnny Jensen). When Vincent shows up at a meeting place, the two aliens chorloform him and take him to meet their leader, Magnus. He is played by Michael Rennie, who played the peaceful alien Klaatu in the classic sci-fi film The Day The Earth Stood Still. Magnus tells Vincent that they "have used terror, violence, even killed" in their dealings with earth people, but "we've learned." He says The Invaders want to "contribute our knowledge to your lives." They take Vincent on a space ship ride which goes far from the earth, but then back to Margaretta Valley, which Vincent once hoped to develop. There he meets Billy Sterns (Paul Carr), a fellow architect whose plans for developing a dam to help turn the valley into a verdant location were pooh-poohed years ago. Vincent also meets his old girl friend Helen (Katherine Justice) who lays on banalities about how they can resume their romance. Vincent starts to get very antsy about Helen's spiel, and eventually realizes that this has all been an illusion created by Magnus and his associates. Back at alien headquarters, Magnus threatens to kill Greely's wife and child and makes Vincent call Ross to renounce everything that he has said about testifying. Then Magnus's minions punch Vincent out, fill him full of booze, and place him and Greely in a car which careens down a mountain road. Only because Vincent manages to flip the car over in the nick of time are the two men spared a grisly death. Back in Washington again, Vincent has to endure Ross's wrath for withdrawing his support. Vincent tells Ross that one of the men who was with the aliens at Magnus's headquarters was none other than Sergeant Ruddell, and the show closes with Ross ordering a check on his second-in-command.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

This show, which is critical to The Invaders mythology, is very good, but it has one annoying script omission (see below).

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11. The Ivy Curtain ★★★
Original air date: March 21, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Barney Cahill (Jack Warden), a pilot for Cameron Air Cargo, is flying four Invaders to Cameron, New Mexico, where this show takes place. His rickety plane is not going to make the Cameron airport, so he lands it, causing some machinery to fall on one of the men, injuring him. When Cahill sees the man's arm, which looks like a mannequin's with cracks and no blood, he freaks out. Cahill is taken to the Midland Academy near Cameron, a center where Invaders are trained in the ways of Americans. There he is told by Dr. Reynard (Murray Matheson), the English-accented dean of the place, that they were thinking of killing him. Instead, Cahill is offered a job ferrying Invaders from various locations to the school for $1,000 a head. Cahill accepts reluctantly, especially after Reynard stuffs a bunch of cash in his pocket. Around this time, Vincent also arrives in Cameron, having trailed William Burns (David Sheiner) there from other cities around the country. Burns is a senior employee at the Academy. Vincent is ambushed by Burns on the road into the Academy and knocked out. When they arrive, he punches Burns and escapes into the school, where he spies on the "students" in a couple of indoctrination rooms. Vincent manages to escape from the school in a van in which Cahill is being driven back to town. When it comes to a near-stop at an intersection, Vincent jumps out, seemingly unnoticed by the Invader driver, and almost gets run over by another car. Back at the Cameron airport, Vincent, pretending to be a reporter, asks questions of Stacy (Susan Oliver), who works in the air cargo company's office. Since Stacy has hot pants for him, the two of them later have drinks in a bar at the Cameron bus station. When Stacy goes home, we find out that she is Cahill's wife, despite the fact that, as she says, he is old enough to be her father. Vincent talks to Detective Lt. Alvarado (Barry Russo) from the local cops about the Academy, saying that the place is full of people "who are going to overthrow the government." Predictably when Vincent goes with the cops back to the place, there is no evidence that anything fishy is going on. Students are in one of the indoctrination rooms listening to a jukebox, and studying chemistry in another. Later, at the airport, Vincent tries unsuccessfully to get Cahill not to have anything to do with the school or the Invaders, but Cahill leaves the airport in a plane anyway to pick up a new batch of them. As soon as he departs, the money-hungry Stacy rushes to the phone and calls the Academy to tell them what is going on. Vincent calls the state police in San Lucas County for help, but when they show up, they are killed with the CHIND. Burns and three other men from the school soon arrive at the cargo company's office and kill the dispatcher (Paul Pepper). Vincent returns to the office where he fights with Burns, killing Burns with his own gun, causing him to immolate. Warned by Vincent about what is going on, instead of landing at the airport, Cahill flies the plane with four Invaders on board to the Academy where he crashes it into the place. At the show's end, Stacy tries to talk to Vincent, but he ignores her as he leaves town on the bus.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Another very good show, which reveals some interesting information about Vincent.

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12. The Betrayed ★★★
Original air date: March 28, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

This episode finds Vincent in Houston, Texas, where he has been contracted to design a plant for Carver Oil by the company owner, Simon Carver (Ed Begley). He also has time to fall in love with Carver's daughter Susan (Laura Devon). Of course, Vincent is there to snoop around because a couple of watchmen working for the company were recently found dead, both of a cerebral hemorrhage. At the beginning of the show, Vincent is watching a space ship land near an oil tank car. After taking a bunch of pictures, Vincent climbs inside the car, where there is typical Invaders equipment. He grabs what looks like a computer tape and fights off an alien who tries to keep him from taking it. When he brings Carver to the car with some local cop, nothing remains of the Invaders' presence, even though the car has supposedly been sitting there for some time. Vincent turns the tape over to Neal Taft (Norman Fell), an electronics genius specializing in cryptography who was fired from his government job because of "non-conformity." Carver's secretary Evelyn Bowers (Nancy Wickwire), who is an alien, knows that Vincent took the tape. She persuades Susan to help find out what happened to it by threatening to expose Susan's father who engaged in some shady business practices in the past which resulted in the death of his partner Arnold Meyer by suicide. Taft has difficulty figuring out what is on the tape, but says the data resembles something he encountered at NASA which was connected with a homing control for the re-entry of a space capsule. Taft turns the tape over to his geeky brother Joey for further analysis. When Vincent is going to meet with Joey and blurts the location under his breath while meeting with Susan in a restaurant, Susan quickly phones Bowers and spills the beans. Two Invaders show up before Vincent to meet with Joey, who is subsequently killed when they hit him with their car as they flee from the scene of the encounter. Bowers puts pressure on Susan to tell whether Taft or Vincent know anything from the tape, whether they "represent danger" to The Invaders. Bowers tells Susan, "If I fail again, I die and you die and so does your father." At Vincent's recommendation, Susan tries to flee to join her father, who is out of town on a business trip, but the Invaders stop her at the airport and take her to the tank car. Inside, this car has reverted back to the state at the beginning of the show as "a homing device" for space ships. Vincent convinces Taft to contact NASA and the FBI about what they have found, and as they are waiting by the tank car for these people to show up, Bowers, Susan and two aliens arrive. Inside the car, Susan gets the rotating crystal treatment, finally confessing that Vincent indeed knows what is going on. Two green jumpsuited Invaders already in the car abort the mission of a ship three minutes away from landing. Bowers is liquidated, but the others all flee as Vincent rushes to the car and helps Susan out. Unfortunately, the "destruct cycle" for the car has contaminated Susan with massive amounts of radiation, and she dies shortly after in Vincent's arms. The tank car immolates, leaving nothing for the soon-to-arrive people from NASA and the FBI to see.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Good acting by the principals, especially Begley, who is his usual self as a gruff and blustery industrialist, helps to overcome some questions about the script.

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13. Storm ★★★
Original air date: April 4, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Meteorologist Ed Gantley (Simon Scott) watches film of a recent hurricane in Florida during the month of February. This is not the correct season for this kind of weather, and there are other things that are peculiar: the fact that the storm missed the town of St. Matthew Beach and the Lydia J, a fishing boat from this town, was seen in the eye of the hurricane and survived. Gantley calls up his pal Father Joe Corelli (Joseph Campanella), who just happens to be visiting from this town, and makes arrangements to return back there with him. In Gantley's office, there is some creepy guy (Edward Faulkner) who wonders why the doctor is making a big deal out of all this. Of course, this guy is an Invader! Vincent also makes his way to St. Matthew Beach, because he wants to talk to Gantley. When he signs in at the hotel, there are yet more potential Invaders all over the place, including Luis Perez (Carlos Romero). Vincent goes to Father Joe's house where Gantley is supposedly hanging out, but the weatherman is actually snooping around the Lydia J, which is out in the harbor. There he lifts up a tarpaulin to expose some strange equipment -- not a good idea, because a crew member from the boat sneaks up and zaps him with the CHIND. Vincent arrives at Father Joe's place where Lisa (Barbara Luna) is his housekeeper. The priest is called away after he finds out about Gantley's death, and Vincent goes to look around the nearby church. Inside, another creepy guy (Allen Emerson) is playing the organ and the fellow from the teaser is also there. They want to make short work of Vincent, but Vincent turns Mr. Teaser Creepy Guy's CHIND on the alien himself, causing him to immolate. The organist keeps up the attack on Vincent, though, who falls on the organ making a noise which can be heard by two hot-rodders outside. They rescue him and take him to the priest's house, where Lisa, who is also an Invader, dopes him up with some pills in his tea. Vincent, who was badly beaten, is supposed to take it easy, but he struggles out of bed and witnesses Lisa talking to the organist downstairs. The organist later returns to the church and pulls down a plaque on the wall, revealing a computer set up with flashing lights which controls the equipment on the Lydia J, producing weather which is going to wipe out much of the U.S. East Coast. The organist manipulates the computer which has a twirling icon on its surface which looks like it came from a pinball machine. Vincent tries to escape from the priest's house, throwing Lisa out of his way just as Father Joe and several others return home. Lisa makes it look like Vincent wanted to rape her, causing the priest to strike him and then realize how hypocritical this gesture is, considering his occupation. Since Vincent is "sick," he is taken away by some of the townspeople to a nearby hospital, but manages to escape in a cop car and return to the church. Wanting to say a prayer for Vincent over Lisa's objections, Father Joe finds the organist and Luis in the church manipulating the computer and finally realizes the extent of what is going on. Confronted by the returning Vincent, Luis, who is the seeming mastermind behind this operation, takes poison and throws himself on the machine, causing it to explode and all the crazy weather to stop. Father Joe cannot bring himself to shoot Lisa and the organist, both of whom escape. The show ends with the priest seriously conflicted about what happened.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

I don't care how good or bad the show is, Barbara Luna is a goddess! (Actually the show is not bad at all.)

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14. Panic ★★
Original air date: April 11, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Nick Baxter (Robert Walker Jr.) is on the run. He has "a kind of virus communicated by touch" which causes death by freezing in humans and other animals. The show takes place near Morgan's Corner and Top Pine Crossing, West Virginia, where 9 people have died after being in contact with Baxter. In addition to a huge co-ordinated effort to find him by the local authorities, two Invaders are on Baxter's trail, though it is never explained exactly why they want to capture him. After dealing with a pursuing cop who is an Invader, Vincent, who is also following Baxter, takes him at gunpoint, only to be sent in directions other than back to the health officials and police who are looking for the cause of this "epidemic." Vincent ends up in the sticks where Madeline Flagg (Lynn Loring) lives with her father Gus (character actor supreme R.G. Armstrong). At this point, the story becomes very boring, with Loring not able to make much out of her badly-written part. As well, she is far too attractive for a girl living in the middle of nowhere, even though she says that she has been married and divorced and has experience with "the big city." Gus goes to town to get the cops, and Vincent ties Baxter to a pole in the middle of the Flaggs' rustic shack. After Vincent passes out from exhaustion, Baxter convinces Madeline to release him so he can go to Idlewild Flats nearby to get witnesses who will prove that he really didn't kill all those frozen people. Baxter almost makes it to a space ship landing the next morning at the Flats, but it takes off without him and shoots him dead after Gus climbs a tower with a siren used to alert the local authorities. Gus is also shot dead by Baxter in front of his daughter; Loring's reaction is far from horrified.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Sort of interesting up to a point -- but then bogs down badly after Vincent and his prisoner meet the Flaggs.

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15. Moonshot ★★★★
Original air date: April 11, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

Two astronauts, Major Clifford Banks (John Lupton) and Lieutenant Colonel Howell (Robert Knapp) are on an R&R marlin fishing expedition off the Florida Keys when Invaders in a helicopter spray some deadly red smoke over their boat. Both the astronauts die, causing a shakeup in the lineup for the upcoming NASA moon expedition. Martin Daniels (uncredited actor) will remain the astronaut in the capsule, while Lieutenant Colonel Tony (Anthony "Hawaiian Eye" Eisley) is promoted to captain and the third spot will be taken by Commander Hardy Smith (John Ericson), a decorated Vietnam veteran. After hearing about the fog-related deaths, Vincent arrives at a NASA press conference, but is denied entrance. He is brought before Gavin Lewis, head of security (Peter Graves). Lewis is more sympathetic to Vincent than most other official types on the show, saying "He [Vincent] did come" after being informed that Vincent has shown up, suggesting that Vincent is a "known quantity" in terms of his quest for the truth about The Invaders. Lewis was originally part of the moon expedition, but had to withdraw because of mysterious problems with his blood pressure, which ended up with him getting treated like a "Section 8 case," meaning someone who is going to be discharged from the military because of mental problems. Lewis's sympathies for Vincent are reinforced when a man who witnessed the spraying of the smoke from shore, Charlie Coogan (Strother Martin), who told Lewis about this when interrogated in his office, is later reduced to a zombie thanks to the rotating crystal treatment, saying that he made his story up to get his name in the papers. Lewis has to contend with phone calls from Smith's wife Angela (Joanne Linville). She tells him that her husband is acting weird, forgetting things. Lewis's relationship with her is Facebook-complicated, because while Lewis is Hardy's friend, it sounds like he also had a more-than-personal interest in Angela, though he denies any hanky-panky later in the show. As Vincent and Lewis view some films of the moon mission astronauts, Vincent, who suspects Smith of being an alien because he is being treated by a medic who has Invader-like signs like a crooked pinkie, notices that Smith looks different in footage taken a while ago compared to more recently. Lewis pooh-poohs this, saying this may be due to plastic surgery to repair damage to Smith's face from a bomb explosion at his hotel in Vietnam. Vincent suggests that Smith has been manipulated into becoming part of the crew in order to investigate "structures" on the moon which may be connected with Invaders. Vincent gets Angela to help determine if her husband is who he says he is. She wishes him "good luck" over the phone, something her superstitious husband would never want to hear from her. Frantic efforts are made to halt the launch, even though the three astronauts are almost ready to board the capsule. When the countdown is stopped and Smith summoned to the control room, he freaks out and locks himself in the capsule, then overrides the takeoff sequence, launching himself into space. When the rocket is above Cape Kennedy, it explodes. As the show ends, Vincent surmises that the "structures" on the moon will be gone by the time men finally arrive there, and an investigation concludes that Smith's actions were because he went beserk, perhaps connected with mental issues from his tour in Vietnam.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

One of the very best shows, thanks to a stellar cast of actors and an excellent script which lets us down only at the very end (see trivia section below).

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SMOKING:

People smoke in this show like it is going out of style.

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16. Wall of Crystal ★★
Original air date: May 2, 1967-- Music: Dominic Frontiere

SUMMARY:

A recently-married couple is run off the highway after nearly hitting a truck driven by an Invader. The truck contains some crystals which suck all the oxygen out of the air, part of the Invaders' scheme to take over the earth. When the couple approach the flipped-over truck whose driver has immolated, they are immediately killed by the fumes emanating from the crystals. Vincent is soon on the scene after reading about this encounter in a newspaper article. He finds a crystal which is buried in the dirt and actually touches it with his hands! Vincent has a bad reaction to the fumes, but puts the crystal in a plastic bag. Around this time, Invader big shot Taugus (Ed Asner) drives by, asking Vincent if he needs any help. After Vincent says no, Taugus watches from nearby with binoculars. Vincent takes the crystal and gets in touch with Theodore Booth (Burgess Meredith), an outspoken radio commentator and newspaper columnist for the San Francisco Courier. Booth, who has had contact with Vincent before, considering him to be like "Chicken Little" and "a psycho," is intrigued, and turns the crystal over to a laboratory for analysis. However, Invaders sneak into the lab as a guy is testing the substance and kill him. Taugus threatens Vincent's brother Robert (Linden Chiles), who is a doctor, and the brother's pregnant wife Grace (Julie Sommars). Vincent meets with his brother, but their relationship is hostile. The Invaders call Robert away from his house for a phony medical emergency and kidnap him. The brother tries to fight his way out of the Invaders' hideout, but this is futile. When he refuses to co-operate, the Invaders grab his wife and threaten to kill her in a room with the crystals. Vincent wants proof that his brother is still alive, which the Invaders arrange in the form of a phone call. On the phone, Robert tells Vincent "I'm in deep water again, David, but I survived before, so just don't worry about me." This is the second show in a row where someone in trouble uses "code words" to give the person listening a clue that something is amiss. Vincent, who is trying unsuccessfully to contact Booth, who is dithering about whether or not to publish the info about The Invaders, has a brainstorm that his brother is being held in "the old winery" located near Archer Creek where his brother almost drowned when he was eight years old. Vincent decides to offer himself to the Invaders instead of his brother and goes to their hideout, but Robert will have nothing of this scheme. Booth arrives at the winery, having been tipped off by Robert's wife, and tries to ram the Invaders with his car, which results in both his death and that of Taugus when the two are immolated. The other Invaders at the site make an entire building disappear and cops (who are also Invaders) arrive, suggesting that both Vincent and his brother are nuts.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

The only thing keeping this rather mundane episode from getting a lower rating is the delightfully slimy performance by Ed Asner as Taugus, the head Invader.

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17. The Condemned ★★
Original air date: May 9, 1967-- Music: Sidney Cutner

SUMMARY:

Having fallen on hard times financially, Morgan Tate (Ralph Bellamy) leases some buildings at his company, Peninsula Telecommunications Laboratories in Sands Point, Oregon to Invaders headed by Lewis Dunn (Murray Hamilton, giving an oily performance). They are using the place as a transmission hub to communicate with key leaders all over the globe as part of the their insidious scheme to conquer the earth. Tate finds some paperwork which lists these eleven leaders and wants to expose them. As the show begins, he is trying to escape from the plant and he hides the list inside a wall panel. Fleeing in a truck outside with another man, Ed, Tate is driven off the road by Invaders following them. After the truck is immolated, it is assumed that Tate was in the truck, but he was actually hiding nearby, witnessed by a little girl. After reading about all this in the papers, Vincent arrives at Tate's company, but Dunn, who says that Tate is out of town, brushes him off. Vincent witnesses two workers playing with electricity outside, and is attacked by an Invader security guard. When the two of them fight, conveniently on the edge of a high cliff nearby, the guard flies over, vaporizing as he lands on the rocks below in front of several people who are enjoying the beach. Without a body, it is hard for the local cops to make a case against Vincent, who has been arrested on suspicion of murder, but a body, found by a fisherman, is eventually produced, even though the face is very mangled. Tate's daughter Carol (Marlyn Mason) is brought in to identify her father, which she does, but she is estranged from the old man. She hasn't seen him for years, because she thinks her alcoholic mother committed suicide because of her father years ago, something she has never forgiven him for. Vincent knows that the guard who died was not her father, even though numerous people from the plant, including Dunn's second-in-command Finney (John S. Ragin), have said he was, and picks Carol's brains to find out where the old man might be hiding. Carol gives a clue that he is a diabetic, so Vincent checks out the Dumetz Pharmacy and finds that there has been a delivery of insulin to the Longwood Motel, Room 2. When Vincent arrives there, Tate sneaks out the back window, leaving Vincent to deal with the cops who soon show up, tipped off by a kid from the pharmacy. Vincent, who escaped custody from the cops at the Coos County Morgue, is arrested again. The Invaders hold Carol in the plant office, knowing that her father will try and contact her, which he eventually does. Because she hates the old man, who Dunn has made out to be a thief, Carol is only too glad to co-operate. Tate, who is very much alive, contacts the cops and manages to get Vincent sprung. After Vincent negotiates a deal with Dunn, Tate shows up at the plant to lead The Invaders to the hidden file, exchanging himself for Carol. Later, Vincent sneaks into the plant from a back way, and after Tate turns over the document, fights with The Invaders. Hamilton is immolated during the confrontation, but so is Tate as the latter tries to escape. As he leaves town, Vincent tells Carol that her father really loved her. Seemingly unaware that her father is dead, she isn't particularly moved by this. Presumably Vincent will bring her up to date as to the two of them take a cab to the airport.

CAPSULE CRITIQUE:

Not bad, though there are a few implausibilities near the show's end. Mason plays up the bitter, estranged daughter for all it's worth.

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