Steele Trap – 7

Time for dinner!


Well. That looks … appetizing. Still beats the eats at the Grievey Mansion, I guess.


Laura, ravishing in red, is amused. “Franks and beans. On Wedgewood. Shades of Citzen Hearst.”

behindthescenesPresumably, Laura refers here to Citizen Kane (Orson Welles, Joseph Cotton, RKO Studios, 1941), a thinly-veiled portrait of newpaper magnate William Randolph Hearst.

Feldman has an explanation for the low-brow fare:


“It’s all poor Cindi could handle. Just getting the can open was a major culinary triumph.”

Laura wants to know if their host will be joining them. (My guess is he’s laying dead in an elevator someplace.)


“No, no. Ambrose is giving us sufficient time to be properly awed by the house that smut built.”

Suddenly Steele appears, bearing wine. He interjects himself between Laura and Feldman – did he think they seemed a little too congenial?


“Thank you, Doctor,” Laura says. Is that a warning look he’s giving her?


“You don’t approve of Devil magazine?” Laura asks her dinner companion.

Feldman tells her he doesn’t have to approve. “All I have to do is defend it against charges of pornography.” He adds that he’s a very busy boy. Meanwhile …


Miss May, Jane Junior and Doc Art are having a jolly old time.


Laura is NOT having a jolly old time.  “Quite a pair, eh?” Feldman comments.

“That’s what I’ve heard,” quips Laura.

Oh, no! Now Laura is making the cheap jokes!




Now that’s what I call a sincere smile!


Feldman reports that Randi was Ambrose’s steady companion (Wait. Is that like an inamorata?) until Miss May blossomed a couple of years ago.

“He likes them young- and dumb.”


The ladies are still enjoying Mr. Steele’s company.


“She doesn’t seem to be holding a grudge,” Laura notes. Something tells me Laura DOES hold a grudge.

Feldman has an explanation. “Randi? She can’t hold a thought in her head for three seconds, much less a grudge.”

He moves on to the next guest down the table:
“Michael Dominic. Mr. Ambrose’s business partner. Ultra silent variety.”


Thanks for the exposition, Feldman!


Suddenly a disembodied voice announces, “Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. And welcome to the Devil’s Playground.”

The dinner party breaks up abruptly as they guests hurry toward the sound of the voice.


Oh, look! It’s the piano player who doesn’t take requests. What, she doesn’t like franks and beans?


As the dinner guests enter …


We see someone – apparently our genial host – on a big screen TV. “I’m delighted you could all accept my invitation,” he says.


“And I promise each and every one of you a memorable weekend. But for now, enjoy your meal- pass a pleasant evening- and when you least expect it – I will make my presence felt.”




He uses a remote and the screen goes blank.


Madeline, still looking profoundly bored, nevertheless manages to convey strong emotion. “What the HELL did he mean by that? Make his presence felt?”


“Well, you know Ambrose,” Feldman reminds us. (Actually, we don’t.)  “He loves the dramatic, so let’s just sit back and enjoy the suspense.”


As the rest of the guests drift off, Laura and Steele exchange a meaningful look. Think they’re enjoying the suspense?


Filed under Season 1

4 responses to “Steele Trap – 7

  1. eaz35173

    LOL – The most cliched pornographer in the world!! Laura only has herself to blame for Steele’s dinner companions. She could have chosen to sit next to him, but opted, instead, for Mr. Feldman. And thank goodness he was there to explain everything to us! Along with Laura looking fabulous in red, Mr. Steele looks quite handsome in that black and white ensemble!

  2. Luann

    William Randolph Hearst famously served “camp fare” at Hearst Castle, including franks ‘n’ beans on fancy china. But wouldn’t a rich fat cat (and cliched pornographer) like Ambrose have a full staff of cooks and butlers? You can bet that the bunnies at the Playboy mansion don’t have to make dinner themselves.

  3. daphgg

    I agree no servants, no cooks for a fancy weekend-long party is too strange. No salad with the franks and beans? What a party. No wonder Steele and Laura exchange looks.

    Agreed. Laura doesn’t sit next to Steele but gets visibly upset seeing him with other females who do, its not fair. i suspect that she’s not telling him about. Maybe she expected him to choose her over them?

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