So … after many months, here we are again. I confess I kind of abandoned this blog because of an apparent lack of interest (and it’s quite a lot of work, to be honest). But I was feeling a little nostalgic, so I thought I’d pick it up again – for now. Can’t promise how long it’s going to last.
Our episode opens on an outside view of a palatial home on a dark night. Suddenly we hear a scream. What horror could have prompted this bloodcurdling cry?
Perhaps the revelation that people actually name children Bibi.
Bibi Osterwald had already enjoyed a long and active career before this guest shot on Remington Steele. Beginning in 1948, she played a wide variety of guest roles on TV (her only regular live action series role appears to have been as David Birney’s mother on the early 70s series “Bridget Loves Bernie.” Her final role was as Grammy Gingersnap on the Rugrats cartoon. She died in 2002 at the age of 83.
Suddenly we hear shots ring out! More screaming! A light snaps on in the house, and …
… we learn that the very versatile Peter Jurasik is also guesting tonight, in the first of two guest appearances on Remington Steele. A steadily working character actor, Jurasik has achieved cult status in two roles in particular..
As the pompous and belligerent Centauri Ambassador Londo Mollari on the TV series Babylon 5, and as the ill-fated compound-interest Program Crom in the 1982 film Tron. I gotta be honest: I love me some Peter Jurasik.
The screaming continues, not entirely convincingly, as our view moves to a dimly hit hallway inside the mansion.
Suddenly a figure in a flowing nightgown appears at the end of the hall.
It seems it is she who is screaming, presumably from having stubbed her toe on one of those big pieces of furniture sitting in the hallway to trip over in the dark.
As she gets closer, we see it is an older lady in a hurry.
The background music is hectic, letting us know this is a dramatic situation. (Nothing communicates DANGER like the sound of a clarinet running up a scale, backed by a string section. Scary!)
The woman reaches a staircase, and the sudden appearance of Gareth Davies’ producer credit in front of her causes her to lose her balance.
She (or more accurately, a stunt double) tumbles to the bottom. Now we know what to expect from this episode: “Remington Steele and the Case of the Broken Hip.”
Some old guy appears who looks like Batman’s butler (Is this the Wayne Mansion? Is the fleeing lady Aunt Harriet?)
Holy unexpected crossover, Batman!
He encounters another lady in a silky, albeit somewhat matronly, nightie, to whom he shouts, “She’s at it again!” At the same time, the credits helpfully remind us that Butler and Gleason created this awesome show.
Well done, gentlemen.
The apparent rescuers dash down the stairs. We learn this episode was written by Peter Lefcourt. This is Lefcourt’s only writing credit for Remington Steele, but he wrote several for Scarecrow & Mrs. King (perhaps poached in the same raid that stole Beverly Garland) and Cagney & Lacey, among other series.
The older gentleman and lady do not discover a body at the bottom of the staircase. This is a surprise.
“Mother!” the lady calls. So is the old guy Dad?
We see the elderly woman again, looking almost regal in her nightgown and robe. Dramatically she declares, “He won’t get me tonight. Not tonight!”
And then, using the distraction of director Seymour Robbie’s credit, she escapes into the darkness …