Signed, Steeled & Delivered – 4

Our next scene opens on …


… Laura, enjoying her very full weekend. There’s a knock on the door. Who is it?

“Steele,” says a voice behind the door.


“Steele!” I think she’s glad he stopped by, don’t you?

Laura goes to the door, but doesn’t open it.


Laura reminds Mr. Steele that she made it very clear: She’s busy tonight! Busy, busy, busy!

Steele’s voice concedes that, but tells her he’s with someone who needs their help. Indeed, “If you’ve ever seen a more desperate creature in your life, I shall leave in an instant.”

Intrigued, Laura opens the door a crack.


There’s a zombie on her front step!


Laura is … surprised!


“Hello, Miss Holt. My name is Sheldon Quarry.”


I think Mr. Steele knows very well how to pique Laura’s attention!


Laura asks if her gentlemen callers would mind waiting just one minute.


Time for a little speed cleaning! Laura scoops up her paperwork and dashes into another room.

behindthescenesI believe I read somewhere that Laura’s house was a replica of Stephanie Zimbalist’s own home, which was located not far from the lot where they shot  the show, and she brought in some of her own furnishings/knick-knacks to decorate Laura’s place.


Laura dashes from the other room – oops! Forgot something!


She returns with a “hot date” dress, which she artfully arranges to set the scene. Because everybody gets dressed to go out in their living room! (I think Miss Holt may be a bit flustered here, no?)


She is finally ready to receive her guests. Laura wants to know why S&M Guy Sheldon is in such a state!


“It seems people are trying to kill him,” Steele explains.


Laura places comforting (?) hands around S&M Guy Sheldon’s neck. Is she going to ask him if she can touch his face, a’la Creepy Izzy?

“What people?” Laura asks him.


“The CIA,” he says, adding, “It’s hair dye.”


“The CIA? Why?” Laura wants to know.


“A whim, perhaps?” Steele suggests. The point is, Sheldon wants them  (Steele Investigations)  to stop them (the CIA).


Apparently Sheldon is under the impression they have the “background for the job.”

Laura decides it’s time to caucus in the other room.


They leave Sheldon to loiter in the living room (don’t sit on the couch, Shelly!) and head to Laura’s fairly hideous kitchen. Is that a picture of a rabbit above the phone? Random!

Laura wants to know why this guy thinks they have the background to take on the CIA. Her tone says, “What did you do this time?”


Steele explains that Sheldon is a CIA employee. A few days ago men started following him. They started shooting at him.

Um … men?


Dude looks like a lady!


Sheldon panicked and ran – straight to that famous ex-CIA agent …
“Remington Steele!” they exclaim in unison. (They’re such a team!)


Oh, my. Laura surmises that Sheldon read about Mr. Steele in the papers: “All that vague reference to secret missions, all that gop about government service.”


Steele wants to know what they’re going to do about it! Laura gives him a look: she’s got this under control.


Caucus is over!

Laura has some bad news to break to Sheldon:


“What would you say if I told you Mr. Steele never had anything to do with the CIA?”


Um … Miss Holt? Sheldon has news for you.


“Down at the CIA, I worked in IR – that’s Information Retrieval. At the company, I’m known as the Answer Man.” He knows how much wheat was harvested in the Ukraine in 1963! He knows how many MIGs can land on the island of Baba, off Cuba! He knows who was Miss Rheingold of 1957!

funfacticonMiss Rheingold 1957 was Margie McNally, who later married publishing executive Robert E. Petersen. She founded the Petersen Automotive Museum in L.A.Miss_Rheingold_1957_Election_01201_op_800x1098


So don’t try to tell The Answer Man that things aren’t as he knows them to be! He’s thoroughly investigated Mr. Steele. His findings: no birth certificate, no fingerprints on file, no records of any kind. Obviously he was with The Company!


“I guess you have us!” Laura concedes.


Steele calls another caucus. He wants to know what the hell she’s doing?


“What did you expect me to say? ‘I’m sorry, Mr. Quarry, you’re wrong. Remington Steele can’t help you, because there is no Remington Steele.'”


Obviously there’s been a mistake, she reasons. Sheldon needs help, someone to contact – whoever you contact in situations like this – and ….


And-and-and-what?! These are secret agents we’re talking about. Bombs! Poison darts! Big fat guys with deadly hats they throw at your neck!”

behindthescenesPierce Brosnan has said he first dreamed of being an actor after seeing his first James Bond film, Goldfinger. But he didn’t want to be Bond. “I wanted to be OddJob, and wear a hat.”


Wish granted, Mr. Brosnan!


Sheldon appears in the doorway; he hopes he’s not interrupting.


“I just wanted to say, being here with you people is the first time I’ve felt really safe in a long time.” He hasn’t had a sound night’s sleep or a hot meal since Wednesday!


Laura leads him to the kitchen table.


Laura starts fussing in the kitchen, though Sheldon protests.


Steele seems a bit perturbed by her solicitousness – she’s never that nice to him!


Laura presents Sheldon with a salad and tells him to eat. She then returns to Steele …


… who has poured himself a cuppa.


Sheldon shares some painful news: He was supposed to get married tomorrow, to Lucille. He was on his way to the rehearsal when he saw one of his ushers across a courtyard. “He waves to me … gives me a little nod like he needs a ride home, and I say yeah. He beats me over to the car.”


“He must have seen the tuxedo boxes on the passenger seat, because he walks around and grabs holds of the driver’s door. The first thing I see is his body flying up in the air like he was let out of some jack-in-the-box.”


Laura is deeply affected by Sheldon’s story, especially when he tells her he hasn’t been in contact with Lucille – it’s too dangerous.


She tells him there’s not much they can do about the CIA at this hour, but asks if she can at least put Lucille’s mind at ease.


Sheldon feels guilty for making Laura cancel her date.




“Oh, yes! My date, hahahahaha!”



She forgot all about it, in all the excitement.


Laura moves to call her date to break the bad news. I know he’ll be crushed!


She shoos Sheldon and Steele into the living room. After all, this is private! Personal!


“Hello? This is Laura Holt. I ordered a medium pizza to go about 15 minutes ago. Well … cancel it.”

A very full weekend indeed, Laura!

This scene gives us a window into who Laura is outside the office. In contrast to her sophisticated office style, her home is kind of kitschy. She has pictures of furry animals hanging in her kitchen. And Sheldon certainly activates her nurturing side. Laura so often projects a cool demeanor; it’s slightly startling to see her here like this. Schleppy and lonely on a Friday night, clipping coupons and doing paperwork.

Mr. Steele seems to know his way around Laura’s place, so apparently he’s been here before. I wonder what he thinks about her interior design style? It’s rather different from his upscale digs. I think Mr. Steele is amused by Laura’s embarrassment to be caught in a lie, but at least he’s too much a gentleman (just barely!) to call her on it outright.

Interestingly, Mr. Steele – usually the champion of the underdog – seems wary of helping Sheldon. Clearly he’s seen too many Bond movies; secret agents are bad news! We witness Mr. Steele’s strong instinct for self-preservation. He’s inclined to be helpful, as long as he doesn’t have to stick his neck out too far. I wonder if he’ll warm to Sheldon over time …


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20 responses to “Signed, Steeled & Delivered – 4

  1. steeleinterested

    I love that it is Laura’s ‘past’ that comes back to bite them this time. And that we get to see another of Laura’s layers.

    Good call about his sense of self-preservation. He obviously had to develop it quickly and thoroughly to even make it to LA to throw Laura’s life into chaos. It makes sense that it remains a strong motivator for him. Interesting that he is willing to call uncle when he thinks they are in over their head but Laura insists they persist. Whether it is stubborn pride or fear of being exposed as a fraud or both, she is the one here who doesn’t back away from the impossible challenge. Hmm. Pondering what that says about who is the greater risk taker and who has the most to lose…

    • Melissa

      Right now? Laura has the most to lose. She has her entire life invested in that agency. Steele (as we saw in the last case) is just “playing detective”.

      Now, who is the greater risk taker? That’s a question….Steele seems to have no problem grifting his way through life. That’s a risky occupation. Laura, also, has taken a big risk in manufacturing a non-existent boss.

      Both, also, are self-confident in their abilities to “get the job done.”

  2. eaz35173

    I like this glimpse of Laura’s personal life. So much of her life is wrapped up in the agency, it’s easy to forget that she does spend some time away from it. By the way, I don’t think Laura is lonely on this Friday night. There is a difference of being alone and being lonely. I think Laura rather enjoys her own company and isn’t feeling like she’s missing something by spending the night with her paperwork and a pizza.

    I also like how Laura realizes that it’s her fabrication of the past that is coming back to bite her. She really can’t blame this one on Steele. And I think this is why she doesn’t back down on taking the case. Kinda like, I-got-us-into-this-mess,- I’ll-get-us-out mentality. I think the shoe is on the other foot now – Laura is feeling sorry for Steele getting sucked into this case.

    Oh, and he is definitely amused at her being caught in the lie about having plans for the evening.

    LOL on that little PB head on big Odd Job’s body!! Is this the first reference to Bond in the series? I know there’s an outright mention of Bond in Steele Away With Me.

    As to your question, SteeleInterested, Laura definitely has more to lose – her agency, her reputation, and her heart. Steele may lose some of his anonymity if he ever wanted to go back to a life of crime, and he’s definitely losing his heart.

    • >I don’t think Laura is lonely on this Friday night. There is a difference of being alone and being lonely. I think Laura rather enjoys her own company and isn’t feeling like she’s missing something by spending the night with her paperwork and a pizza.<

      On most Friday nights, I think this would be true. However, Laura has been rather forcefully reminded by the two men in her life that she doesn't get out much. I think that perhaps has her thinking a bit this night about her lifestyle and whether she's missing out on some things.

      • eaz35173

        Ok, I can buy that.

      • steeleinterested

        I guess I see it differently. I don’t get the feeling she is thinking too much about how she feels about her lifestyle. Her main concern seems to be that she not be seen by Steele as lonely and pathetic. I think she seems pretty content with her evening until he shows up.

      • Ines

        >I don’t think Laura is lonely on this Friday night. There is a difference of being alone and being lonely. I think Laura rather enjoys her own company and isn’t feeling like she’s missing something by spending the night with her paperwork and a pizza.<

        I agree with that. But I may add that although she is not lonely, and that she probably enjoys to be alone; she doesn't want Steele using that against her. That's why her first thoughts when Steele is at her door are to hide the paperwork and to put her dress in that place. Letting him know that she was going to be alone that night, and that he was right about his suspicions, would feed his male ego, and turn the thing against her . She didn't want that.

        I feel there is something about male chauvinism in that scene too. She want to punish him in some way, because his male ego wouldn't let him see that she was different, and that she was happy with that. Not every woman needs to be out on a Friday night to be happy. .
        Although, we use to say here that lies have short legs. That happened to Laura in the kitchen…

      • eaz35173

        I agree that in this instance, Laura didn’t want Steele to see her as pathetic or, to have him see her being alone and using that against her. I was just stating, in general, that Laura seems to be the kind of person who enjoys her own company and doesn’t mind being alone.

        Steele showing up has her having to cover for her earlier lie. After all, she has some ego to protect, as well.

  3. Ines

    I totally agree with that! 🙂

  4. steeleinterested

    Yes. I agree that she enjoys her alone time. I don’t think the same can be said of Mr. Steele based on what we know so far. That may be part of the reason he is still trying to find a date when Mr. Hairdye arrives and why he has such a well developed little black book.

    • Interesting insight! I think Laura is clearly an introvert – as you all have noted, she’s content with her own company, and I suspect the schmoozing that is a necessary part of her business is onerous to her. But Steele is much more people-oriented – perhaps seeking in relative strangers the connections he’s never had at a deep level in his life?

    • Melissa

      Or maybe he doesn’t want to attend the ballet by himself. Who has gone to the theatre alone?

  5. Keri, you are so funny! Your commentary makes me laugh–it’s like enjoying the show in a whole new light all over again. Once again, one of my favorite scenes–when Laura gets caught with her lie and has to cancel the Pizza! Funny! Actually, the whole show is about lying, deceit and misdirection—more than most—I would say. Nobody is who they seem to be, except maybe Sheldon. A lot of funny scenes and aha! moments in this one!

  6. Daph

    When I first saw this scene I rolled with laughter. Now I’m rolling again because your commentary is hilarious. Face palm? I will still be giggling next week.

    I agree that Laura got caught in several lies in this scene. CIA, secret missions, no paper trail for Steele, no date – she was really racking them up.

    She HAD to help Sheldon otherwise Sheldon could have exposed RSI as a fraud. He certainly was in a position to do so.

    Steele is reluctant to help Sheldon because he runs the risk of being investigated by the top law enforcement agency in the USA during this case. Self preservation in his situation is a real good idea considering that he is a professional thief and Sheldon works for the CIA. Still Steele is the bigger risk taker (hey the man dangles off buildings) but he never takes risk with a heavyweight law agency. He is not suicidal.

    Laura’s home doesn’t match who she is at all. I always figured the decor style ways SZ’s and not Laura’s. It just doesn’t fit her personality: workaholic, no nonsense or sentimentality. Laura is not the collectible and little flower kitchen wallpaper type.

    Steele was a little miffed. While Laura was nurturing Sheldon, he had to get his own cuppa. He was being ignored and handled it like a trouper. I always liked that about him. He’s not petty.

    • eaz35173

      Speaking about Laura’s home, you’re right, it doesn’t seem to match the personality of the Laura we know at the office. But I think Laura wears a mask at the office and out in public. She is driven, no nonsense, and a workaholic, as you mentioned. But, I think, at home she takes some of that off. This is her safe space. A place for her to be more than she has to project to the outside world. I imagine her to be a very good compartmentalizer – at the office it’s all business, but at home, it’s her chance to be more comfortable. Perhaps the wallpaper came with the house and she just never bothered to change it? But her piano is there, pictures from her childhood (as we will see in Red Holt). I never had a problem envisioning that this would be Laura’s private style. I also think this environment gives Steele some clues about the real Laura.

      • Inés

        Maybe she decided to use a sophisticated businness facade at the office after her failed attempt with Laura Holt Investigations. She had a less sophisticated wardrobe then (intro pictures), and a simplest office. More alike her home.

      • eaz35173

        Good observation, Ines.

  7. I agree that Laura, underneath her determined, professional façade, is much softer than people who don’t know her well would surmise. We see her kitchen decorated with photos of furry animals (SPOILER ALERT: furry animals will come up again in a few seasons!). We’ll find out that she loves Christmas and all the trappings that go with it. There is definitely a “homey” side to Laura – perhaps she is looking to create a warm, comforting environment that she didn’t enjoy as a child?

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