Our next scene opens on what is presumably the morning after …
Mr. Steele strides purposefully down the corridor toward the office.
Inside the plush confines of Remington Steele Investigations, Bernice is opening today’s mail. It seems to be a busy day at the office.
Steele enters, giving a one-fingered salute (no, not THAT kind) to a cowboy.
He is instantly surrounded by clamoring clients! The Steele agency’s fortunes seem to be looking up!
Mr. Steele calmly directs the crowd …
… into his office. Man, is he a skinny guy.
After securing the mob inside his office, Steele directs Bernice to wait five minutes, “then tell them I was summoned to an urgent meeting with the police commissioner.”
Sometimes I get the sense Bernice isn’t entirely happy in her work.
In Laura’s lavender office (which also seems to be the file room), she is explaining to someone that Buddy Shapiro disappeared, two days ago.
Steele starts to tell Laura that someone broke into his apartment, but she waves him off. She’s working here!
As Laura continues her conversation with what turns out to be Murphy, Steele petulantly begins to whistle an (un)happy tune.
Laura tells Murphy his lead sounds promising … what she can hear of it.
Steele continues to whistle, about as tunelessly as he sings.
Laura says she has a lead on where he (Shapiro, presumably) might be staying. She’ll follow it up, “as soon as I get rid of some of the clutter in the office.” Ouch!
After she finally hangs up, Steele has serious business to discuss: “My apartment was ransacked last night.” He tells her nothing was taken, though he has a very fine collection of pre-Columbian art, not to mention an extensive collection of Impressionist paintings … (Hm. Wonder if he stole these pieces, or bought them with Laura’s money?)
Perhaps not wanting to become an accessory to any crimes, Laura tells him to skip the inventory. Steele tells Laura the intruder was obviously searching for a piece of information he thinks Steele has.
“You don’t have any information,” Laura points out, a little cruelly.
“He doesn’t know that,” Steele insists.
“Perhaps the files will give us a clue to what he was after,” Steele suggests, beginning to rifle through Laura’s drawers.
Some of those files contain sheet music! A clue, or has Laura been practicing her glee club repertoire on company time again?
Laura points out that they’re not working on anything that requires ransacking.
“The sanctity of my home has been violated. Some pervert pranced through my personal possessions!” I love that Steele genuinely feels like the apartment is his “home,” not just a temporary abode he’s enjoying until the next stop on his world tour.
Laura is unconcerned by Steele concern. “Probably someone from your sordid past,” she suggests. “Or a jealous husband, perhaps.” Oh ho! Is that the crux of Laura’s rather cool attitude this morning? Did she know he had a date last night?
Mr. Steele’s rather bemused expression suggests he might be thinking the same thing. Is it LAURA who’s the jealous one?
In any case, Laura can’t hang around and discuss it further; she has a client to meet. She leaves, and Steele goes into his office …
… apparently forgetting he left a crowd in there. What a diverse clientele the agency attracts!
Steele extends his apologies; he’s just been summoned to an urgent meeting with … er …
“The police commissioner,” Bernice supplies.
Incidentally, who is the tiny man in the cowboy hat?
Could it be impish Grand Ole Opry star Little Jimmy Dickens? Let’s say it is!
After ushering the parade of clients out into the lobby again, Mr. Steele asks Bernice for a spare key to Laura’s files; he seems to have misplaced his. Bernice reminds him he never HAD a key.
Steele … appreciates? … Bernice’s attention to detail. She tells him there’s a call for him on line 6. (The office has six lines? That seems excessive.) Steele tells her to take his name and number.
“He won’t leave a name and number,” she says, adding that he’s been calling every day for two weeks, refusing to speak to anyone but Steele, and it’s driving her bananas. (Hm. Does this suggest that Steele hasn’t been to the office for a couple of weeks, or that Bernice has just been putting off the caller, knowing Laura wouldn’t want him to speak to Steele?)
“Thank you, Miss Wolf. You’ve done your usual bang-up job,” Steele dismisses her.
Bernice gives him a parting smirk.
Steele answers the phone.
It’s Loitering Guy! And he’s wearing … spats? That’s a bold fashion statement! He identifies himself as Waldo Church, the man from last night.
“Are you the one who went through my apartment?”
“Of course not. That was Rubio. He was after the bill of sale, but I still have it.”
“I can prove Shapiro’s innocent!” Hmm. Shapiro … wasn’t that the person Laura was talking about? The one who disappeared two days ago? What an unbelievable coincidence!
“Who?” Steele demands.
“He’s trying to kill me, Mr. Steele.”
Mr. Steele is having a little trouble following all this. (He also needs a haircut.) He asks Waldo where he is.
The OTHER Waldo informs Steele that he’s at the Hotel Saracen in Eagle Rock.
Mr. Steele discovers a problem: He doesn’t have a pencil with which to write down the address.
He is forced to use the very high-tech intercom to ask Bernice for help.
She cheerfully obliges.
Mr. Steele is … grateful? But there’s a new problem – no paper.
Fortunately, our detective is a resourceful man. He simply writes the address on the desktop. Brilliant! Now how are you going to wrestle the desk into the limo, Mr. Steele?
Well, it looks as though Mr. Steele is about to embark on a case on his own, without informing Laura. Something tells me that won’t end well. Laura’s coolness toward Steele, and her lack of interest in the fact that his apartment’s been ransacked – an apartment and furnishings paid for by the agency – is curious. Her demeanor is at odds with the warmth we saw at the close of the previous episode. Did Laura decide she’d tipped her hand too much, let Steele have too much control, during that case? Or has he done something else to earn her disapproval?