We observe the Steele Agency’s limo driving through a seedy part of town.
It parks in front of something called the Lost & Found Mission, and Steele (and Fred the chauffeur) gets out. Meanwhile, inside the mission …
… a guy is speaking to a bunch of homeless men –
– one of whom appears to be a beloved sitcom character, fallen on hard times!
Steele enters the mission.
MissionMan tells Gilligan he used to be “just like you. Shootin’ up all day and pukin’ up all night.” Gilligan? On drugs? It’s a dirty lie!
MissionMan explains that he got the message: There was someone who cared about him …
Nope. “The Big C – Jesus Christ Himself.” MissionMan proclaims himself a living, breathing testimony to the powers of the “Big Fella.”
So he is talking about the Skipper?
Mr. Steele appears to be listening to the sermon with interest.
“If he (Christ, not the Skipper) can keep me straight for three years, he sure as hell can do the same thing for you bunch of bums.” (I can’t help thinking MissionMan might build a better rapport with his clientele if he referred to them as something other than bums. Indigents, perhaps. That at least sounds nicer.)
Spotting Steele, MissionMan tells his bunch of bums they can go get something to eat.
Mr. Steele seems … inspired? … by MissionMan’s oration. (Or perhaps he’s hoping to snag a sandwich.)
MissionMan goes to meet Steele. He looks like he’s glad to see him!
“Well, if it ain’t my old-“
Steele shushes him and presents his card.
MissionMan appears nonplused. “Remington Steele Detective Agency? How did YOU wind up detecting?”
(Side note: I thought the business was Remington Steele Investigations? My guess is Laura refused to get Mr. Steele business cards, so he had some made up himself – and hasn’t spent enough time at the office to know the official name of the place. Or maybe “detective agency” sounds more hard-boiled and Bogart-like.)
“I have the face for it,” Steele explains. Really? Let’s test that theory:
One of these things is not like the others!
Steele tells MissionMan, whom he calls Wallace, that he is in “desperate need of your talents.”
Wallace declines, saying he’s not “in that line” any more. “The Big Fella frowns on it.”
Steele assures him he’s not asking him to do anything tainted. Since Wallace has circumvented so many security systems, Steele thinks he’d be the perfect man to install one. He offers Wallace $10,000 for a few days’ work (which leaves Steele with a $15,000 profit. That’s a lot of hay for Danny’s Dessert!). Wallace is tempted.
“What I could do for these bums with $10,000!” Steele directs Wallace to his tailor, with instructions to whip him up something conservative, yet “dernier cri.”
(Thank you, Google, for translating that as “the latest fashion.”) Mon dieu, Monsieur Steele!
Wallace is amused. New name or not, Steele is the same old “high flyer.”
Steele doesn’t disagree!
I’ll stop there, because the next scene is a biggie. What do you make of this connection Steele has with Wallace? Apparently he is a former associate of the con man … but a fellow with personal demons. How do you think Steele feels about his old friend’s new mission? He appears to be setting up a scenario similar to the one he has at the agency: someone else does the work, and he’ll take the bows (and the lion’s share of the money). Yet it’s hard to believe Mr. Steele is really taking advantage of his friend; rather, he’s offering him a chance to make some money to do some good. Still, it’s not quite on the up and up, is it?
-one of whom might be