A-Team Episode 1×03

A-Team Episode 1×03

Face faces death with the proper Face face now.

“Children of Jamestown”

  • Location: Northern California, 5 mi south of the Oregon border
  • Tank: Jeep-mounted Flame-thrower
  • Disguises: No
  • Scam: No
  • Flight: No
  • Fixation: Fictitious Collapsed Mine
  • Flips: 3
  • Fee: Yes, but unknown
  • Quote: “Accept death” – The team, in their darkest moment
  • Bonus Quote: “Hey, Reverend, we got a little fire’n brimstone for ya!” – Hannibal, bringing it
  • Who is that?? John Saxon, Reverend James. Hint: he’ll be back here in a couple years (ok, I cheated–the only other thing I know him from is another A-Team episode later on down the line).

This episode has what I believe to be the darkest moment in the entire show. After the “accept death” scene, the show would never take itself so seriously again. The entire plot was actually a pretty dark too, and John Saxon did a wonderful job portraying unhinged “Reverend” Martin James. The insane cult leader captures our team, then sets them free–but only as a bit of sport hunting.

This was one creepy bad guy. Also he tried to steal Hannibal’s boots. Not cool.

The episode opens with an unusual narration by Hannibal explaining where we’re at and who the team is here to rescue. The rescue actually happens fairly early on in the episode, but once the team realizes the full breadth of the situation, they go back into the lion’s den to put an end to it all. While we did get a tank last episode, with a tiny bit of montage music, this week got our first full machine-shop montage! It’s always fun to see what the team is going to build and this one didn’t disappoint. Stuff blew up real good all over the place! I look forward to many more tanks in the up-coming episodes.

The stunt work, particularly the helicopter work, really stood out this episode–fast take-offs, very low flying. There’s a point where the Reverend goes flying through the air from a Jeep (why is it always a Jeep?) and lands flat on his back, and other than getting up after, it looked quite real. I was also impressed for the calling out of the cult for what it was, a power trip, and not Christianity–and also with Hannibal’s respectful treatment of the bible at the end of the episode.

I don’t care what decade you grew up in, this is pretty rad.

The battle at the end (after our bad guy hunters, surprisingly, fail to take out our heroes) was awesome, with the team just owning the entire fight from the air, from the Jeep-tank, and with ground support from an ad-hoc mortar emplacement. The captives are freed, the bad guys are captive, and score several more points for the A-Team! The villain, the twists, and the highly satisfying ending make this one of my favorite episodes.

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