Monthly Archives: March 2014

Thou Shalt Not Steele – 14

We’re still in the museum …

finallylasers

Oh, look! Somebody finally remembered to turn on the laser beams.

somemetaphor

We’re treated to a close up of a sculpture of … ? Rape of the Sabine Women? Greco-Roman wrestling? Clearly this is meant to be a METAPHOR, and I’m not getting it. Because I am, in the words of our dearly departed friend Khalil, a Philistine. (Maybe the sculpture depicts Philistines!)

thisisart

Now THIS is what I call real art.

steeleflask

Meanwhile, hidden behind the statuary, Steele indulges in a little liquid courage. Laura doesn’t seem impressed.

shecouldnt

It’s an excellent cognac, but Laura declines his offer of a nip.

maybeatouch

Well, on second thought …

. firsttimeeh

“To our first time, eh?” Steele toasts. Again with the double entendres!

ouronlytime

“To our only time.” Laura doesn’t intend for this to become a regular part of doing business.

pityreally

Pity, really,” he laments. “There are so few forms of true intimacy left.”

thisisntadate

“This isn’t a date, you know,” she reminds him. He tells her it beats a night in the laundry hamper.

morelasers

The lasers are still … lasing. Laura wants to know how they’ll get past them.

itsatribble

Steele’s brought along a few accomplices. That backpack must be a TARDIS: bigger on the inside than the outside.

warmfuzzy

Steele has asked the monsters to escort them.

randomalertThese things remind me a little of Tribbles. But EVIL tribbles. (Never feed a tribble after midnight?) How many pop culture references can I get into one random alert?

tribbles

How many tribbles are there in the universe?

windemup

Mr. Steele hands Laura the tribble and tells her to start winding them up. Somehow I think Mr. Steele is winding Laura up!

guardonthejob

We’re back with Security Chief Guy, who has a pretty fancy desk. He’s assuring his boss that he’s not playing the radio any more. (Because that’s the only flaw in security here at Nameless Museum.) Suddenly …

weirdlittlearmy

A tiny army of monsters goes by, beeping. One could quibble with the plausibility of this tactic. How did Laura and Steele wind up all those monsters and let them go all at once? Wouldn’t someone have heard the fairly loud beeping? And wouldn’t any security guy with half a brain figure out they were trying to create a distraction?

gurdisalarmed

Oh. Well, my first two questions are valid.

turnoffalarm

Chief Security Guy runs back to his desk and helpfully turns off the security system. Because that’s what you DO when tiny wind-up monsters invade the museum, that’s why!

runafterarmy

He races off to confront the marauders. Meanwhile …

goodidea

… Steele and Laura and in fairly plain sight, watching the shenanigans with glee! Well, at least Laura looks gleeful. I think she likes tiny monsters!

kickovercreature

They pick their way among the troops. Steele accidentally kicks one over …

fondoffuzzies

… but Laura, who is kind to furry animals, puts him upright again.

yetanothegurd

Nearby, another guard who is apparently unconcerned about beeping monsters in the vicinity, meanders through the halls.

startsearching

Laura and Steele have hidden themselves behind more statues. Laura surmises that they’ll start searching for someone now. Steele assures her that security guys are reluctant to report an invasion of tiny monsters. It hurts their credibility. (And these guys have a reputation to uphold!)

verygoodatthis

“You know, you’re very good at this,” Laura notes, equally impressed and unnerved.

rarecompliment

“I think you just made my evening!” Steele answers. “And here was I beginning to think you didn’t like me.”

idosome

“I do,” she admits. “Some.”

butnotall

“But not all.”

partsIknow

“Only the parts I know.” (Oh, Laura. I suspect there are some parts of Steele you might like very much!)

thepartsyoudont

“And the parts you don’t?” He doesn’t meet her gaze.

theyfrightenme

“They frighten me a little.”

fearcanbe

“Fear can be a most intoxicating brew,” Steele notes. (Better even than an excellent cognac!)

In this segment we see Laura showing her heart again, admitting her vulnerability. Will Mr. Steele leave her again, like he did when she spoke honestly in the car in “Signed, Steeled & Delivered”? Let’s hope not. For his part, Mr. Steele seems genuinely pleased that Laura is impressed by his skill. Was he being honest himself (twice in one episode!) when he told her he was beginning to think she didn’t like him? Laura’s response goes to the heart of their conflict this first season: Laura NEEDS to know more about Steele’s past, and he is unwilling to share that much.

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Thou Shalt Not Steele – 13

We left Laura and Steele discussing spearguns.

handmespeargun

Mr. Steele wants his.

Meanwhile, back in the lobby …

teethagain

… the security chief (?) is fondling his dentures again.

steeletakesaim

Mr. Steele has retrieved his gun and takes careful aim.

goodshot

Nice shot, Mr. Steele!

spoileralert emoticonMr. Steele’s facility with weapons seems to vary with the situation. We’ll see him make incredible shots … and also, inexplicably, unable to hit the broad side of a barn.

pullthisthrough

Steele instructs Laura to “pull this through, gently.” (Insert your own dirty joke here.)

grapplinghook

He affixes a grappling hook (insert your own dirty joke here) to the line and sends it on its way.

success

Success!

climbingonart

Uh, oh. Looks like Mr. Steele missed the sign that said, “Please don’t touch, stand on, or use the art as a zipline base.”

donethisbefore

“You’ve done this before, haven’t you?” Laura remarks astutely.

whatmakesyouthink

“What makes you think that?”

fannypack

Pretty sure that’s not how you’re supposed to wear a fanny pack, Mr. Steele.

swingsteele

And awaaaay! (You can just barely see Pierce Brosnan’s sh**-eating grin as he does this.)

takeoffLaura

Now it’s Laura’s turn. Launch …

whee

… and soar! (I wouldn’t have guessed Laura was a swinger.)

ooph

She comes in for a landing in Mr. Steele’s arms. Nice work if you can get it!

stimulating

“Stimulating, wasn’t it?” Steele says.

“Different,” she responds.

shallwecontinue

“Shall we continue?”

Double entendre much?

grinningsteele

Mr. Steele can’t help but grin a little as he follows her. This woman is something else!

 

This is such a James Bondesque scene! I bet Brosnan and Zimbalist, who did many of their own stunts in the series, had a blast doing this. I think Laura is kind of getting into this stuff. It sure beats waiting in the car with Murphy! Steele seems to enjoy introducing Laura to his area of expertise, perhaps anticipating the rush she’ll get from it. Raise your hand if you think Laura was a little disappointed that they went in the service entrance instead of the skylight.

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Thou Shalt Not Steele -12

 

Despite her hesitation, it seems Laura has agreed to Mr. Steele’s suggestion:

thiscantbe

We find a worried Murphy and pensive Laura dressed in black in a vehicle (presumably a dark-colored station wagon).

“This can’t be it,” Murphy frets.

Laura admits it sounds twisted, but declares it also makes a certain amount of sense.

Murphy reminds her they were hired to catch the thief.

thiefafterpainting

“And the thief is after the painting. So if we have it, then the thief is forced to come to us,” she explains.

“What if HE’S the thief?” Murphy argues.

Then I’d be the last person he’d ask to help him, right?” she counters.

hestwisted

“Who knows with this guy?” Murph insists. “You said yourself, he’s twisted.” He urges Laura not to turn her back on Steele.

turnyourback

Well, looks who’s here! And Laura has her back turned on him. This may not bode well.

Steele has overheard some of their conversation.

“Turn back?” he remarks. “Nonsense! We’re right on schedule.” Of course, he pronounces it in the British way: “SHEDule.”

bondlikeeyes

Mr. Steele ponders his plan in front of what looks to be a replica of Rodin’s “The Thinker.” Ha!

keepenginewarm

Steele gives Murphy some final instructions: “Keep the engine warm and the eyes sharp, old chap.”

sohelpme

Murphy doesn’t appreciate the advice. He knows EXACTLY what to do. “And so help me, you split one hair too many and I’ll do it!”

Is Murphy threatening to expose Steele? Beat him up? Give him a hot oil treatment for his split hairs?

Steele is glad to know that back up is there.

murphisfrustrated

One suspects Murphy is beginning to consider alternative career options.

museumexterioragain

We see the exterior shot of the museum again. Still don’t know what that building actually is.

randomsecurityguard

Inside, in crappy lighting, a random security guard patrols.

peekabooLaura

Laura, perhaps assuming her black outfit and smart newsboy cap render her invisible, peeks around a corner. “How do we get in?” she whispers. “The roof? The window? The sub-basement?”

serviceentrance

Steele has a better idea: “I thought the service entrance would be simpler.”

ukecase

Look! Mr. Steele seems to have brought his ukulele with him. Is there going to be a singalong later?

PierceUkulele

We know he can play, but can he sing?

SPOILER ALERT:

No.

steelewithkeys

He leads Laura to the aforementioned service entrance and produces a set of keys. “A little going-away present from Khalil.”

nightatmuseum

Steele and Laura make their way into the museum. Happily, apparently there are no closed-circuit cameras to monitor the priceless treasures!

guardagain

The would-be thieves duck out of sight as another random guard walks by.

lotmoresecurity

Laura notes that they’ve beefed up security. Steele informs her they can use that to her advantage. Naked statue guy doesn’t say anything.

twolooking

The pair make their way through the museum. They pause to study the next leg of their journey.

alarmbox

There’s the controls to the security system (which doesn’t seem to be working tonight, by the way. Where are the laser beam things?) Curses! They’ve put a super high-tech metal mesh over the control box, making it impregnable!

takearaincheckonthis

Laura suggests they might want to take a pass on this whole grand larceny thing. Mr. Steele seems curiously absorbed in admiring the art.

somekindofvent

That’s quite a modern piece of abstract art. Looks like just the sort of thing Pierce Brosnan appreciates.

I don’t get it.

handmespeargun

Steele calls for his speargun.

whathey

Say what?

I’ll leave us on this cliffhanger. Will Laura and Steele nick the painting? Can Mr. Steele revive Laura’s trust in him? Will the cabbie Laura stole her hat from want it back? Stay tuned!

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Thou Shalt Not Steele – 11

We’re back after a short hiatus! And things are tense at the offices of Remington Steele Investigations …

Laureinwhite

Laura enters, looking crisp and businesslike in a linen suit and matching purse. No hat today?

whatsgoingon

Bernice intercepts her, wanting to know if she’s aware of what’s going on. It seems their “titular head phoned me at 6:00 this morning …

helluvashoppinglist

… with a helluva shopping list. A hundred feet of nylon rope, six pounds of marbles …”

aspeargun

“A speargun!” Laura gasps. Murphy, looking unusually professional in a shirt and tie, grouses that Steele told him to go rent a dark station wagon with a big engine.

funfacticonThe station wagon, defined as “an automobile with one or more rows of folding or removable seats behind the driver and no luggage compartment but an area behind the seats into which suitcases, parcels, etc., can be loaded through a tailgate,” first became widely popular as a family car after World War II. It was for decades the quintessential “mom” car, reaching the zenith of its popularity in 1973, when 1.3 million were produced. They were eventually largely supplanted by SUVs and cross-over vehicles.

Here are some famous station wagons!
famouswagons

I think it’s safe to say Mr. Steele has never owned a station wagon.

moreonmuseum

Laura wants to know how Murphy is coming on background checks of museum employees.

digalittledeeper

He tells her they all check out so far. She wants him to dig deeper on the sexy curator, Ms. Simone. Also, she wants him to find out what he can about someone named Guttman. (I thought it was Guffman?)

howlonglaura

“How long are you going to let this one go, Laura?” Murphy prods. (This suggests there have been other … indiscretions … in the past.)

She admits she doesn’t know.

museumplans

In Mr. Steele’s office, the “titular head” is perusing a set of floorplans. Can we assume it’s the museum?

imtroubled

Laura approaches somewhat hesitantly, looking grim. “I’m troubled,” she says quietly.

BeardedSMiley Body language experts say holding ones hands clenched in front of you shows you are holding back a negative response. Alternately, hands folded in front of you are a sign of vulnerability. I think Laura’s probably dealing with a little of both, don’t you?

Steele tells her that she needn’t worry about the late-great Khalil: “The police found him this morning in a phone booth. Not far from where you live, actually.”

Well, there’s that taken care of. Sucks for Khalil, but apparently nobody will miss him. It’s possible to argue that this is yet another death indirectly attributable to Mr. Steele: this time through his association with Felicia.

altersituation

She thanks him, but adds that it doesn’t alter the situation.

“What situation is that?” he inquires while continuing to scribble notes.

ourarrangement

“I’m no longer sure our arrangement is in the best interest of this agency.”

ofthisagency

That’s got Steele’s attention. “We’re close to that point, are we?”

perilously

“Perilously.”

anywayback

Steele gets up from the desk. He wants to know if there’s any way back from the edge. Why does he get up and approach her? Is he hoping his physical proximity will fluster her? Charm her into backing down? Or does he move to the front of the desk to equalize the power positioning between them – removing himself from the Seat of Authority to indicate he recognizes she is really in charge (or at least on the same level as him)?

tryanexplanation

“You might try an explanation of your actions,” she says, stepping back to give him room to come around the desk.

protect agency

“Suppose I said I was only out to protect the good of the agency,” he counters.

keeptrying

“I wish I could believe that. Keep trying.” To me, it almost looks like Laura has tears in her eyes. Anyone else see that?

blackmailingme

“How about, an old lover in desperate trouble has suddenly reappeared and is blackmailing me into criminal behavior?”

Those eyebrows look sincere to me!

eyebrows

maybebadidea

Laura’s not as easily convinced as I am. “Maybe this was a bad idea,” she says, pacing.

rutellingtruth

“Are you really telling me the truth?”

ithinkitry

“I think I’m trying,” he says. He sounds a little surprised himself!

gravityofsituaion

She needs more than that. “Some statement or gesture that indicates you appreciate the gravity of this situation.”

stealingpainting

“How about stealing the painting with me tonight?”

wasnt it

“That wasn’t it.”

In this scene we see Laura seriously conflicted. She’s aware of how far out on a limb she is putting herself and the agency by continuing to allow this man to be part of her life and business. She has no reason to trust him, and every cause to doubt him. Yet she is almost desperate to give him a chance to explain himself, prove that Murphy isn’t right. And Mr. Steele seems very interested in finding a way to do just that. I suspect in any other situation, this would be his cue to cut and run. Why not take Felicia up on her offer to return to the “good life” of crime?  Felicia would never demand he prove himself to her. Why does Laura’s opinion mean so much?

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