A-Team Episode 3×23

A-Team Episode 3×23

“Beverly Hills Assault”

  • Location: Tokyo, Japan. (Fine: Beverly Hills, California)
  • Tank: No
  • Disguises: Record Store Guy
  • Scam: Key (and credentials as an Art Critic)
  • Flight: No
  • Fixation: Artist
  • Flips: 0
  • Fee: $11,000 (but $8,000 refunded)
  • Quote: “Is there anything you might need in the way of jewelry?” – B.A.’s Suit measuring guy. Adding more proof to my theory that B.A.’s gold is invisible until needed.
  • Bonus Quote: “At last, a case that doesn’t require mosquito netting” – Face, who for once would just like to do a job in Beverly Hills, is that so much to ask?
  • Who is that?? Dennis Franz, Brooks. Hint: this guy sure seems friendly!

Bad guys are roughing up a local artist, trying to force him into doing more art for them so they can sell it at a huge profit–squeezing a bit too hard, they end up putting him in a coma after he’s finished only two works for them. Not so good. On the bright side, I’m pretty his paintings are worth a lot more now. That’s how art works, right? Anyway, our heroes are brought in by his friends to set things right.

I totally remember doing this at the record store with Rush’s Counterparts before buying it. Of course that was a CD, which makes me not old at all because CD’s are much newer than records.

This ep has a lot of things dating it. First off, there are tons of bikers and skaters not wearing helmets. Later, Murdock is forced to describe over the phone what a painting looks like and the team has to flip through the pages of an art book to figure out what work it is. But there’s also a talking mime, a gag that is easily still funny today, so the show holds up at least in that respect.

Soon enough, we hunt down which gallery is running the operation, and Face goes under cover as an art critic. He has a business card (that’s 80’s for–actually, people still use those, don’t they…), which is enough to make him legit (that and the floozy who answers the phone and vouches for him–how does Face keep them all straight?).

Face finds himself on a date with one of the girls working there and if you have to ask how or why, I don’t know how you ever got this far. I feel a bit bad for her–she’s totally getting played so Face can copy her key, and then to make things worse, her boss just shows up on her date to check in on her? Creepy…

I love that art is great simply because Face says it is and since he’s an art critic, that must make it great. It definitely gave me that “I knew it! I knew that was how it worked!” kind of feeling. So I had a question here: the bad guys are making copies of masterpieces and then swapping them with the real things which they find in rich peoples’ homes, and then putting them up for auction. Why does nobody notice the auctions going up for the art pieces that are supposedly hanging above their mantles? Presumably rich people follow art auctions, you’d think they’d catch that.

H. M. Murdock, famous eccentric artist, can’t work under these conditions!

Anyway, Murdock (with the help of our client) gets to work counterfeiting art for the bad guys in order to track the source. Eventually we get to the top, crash a car through the gallery window, shoot the place up, and case closed. Face’s math is a little on the low side, but we can safely assume the team maybe gave these clients a discount, especially given the money was coming from a college fund. The numbers he quoted, along with our previously determined rate of $1400/day for the team, should have come to $3,820, but he only charged them $3,000.

There was one very cool thing that finally happened in this ep. Fifty episodes in, and one of my long-standing questions is answered as we finally meet some common bad guys who’ve actually heard of The A-Team. Plenty of good guys already know about them, and obviously every single client has heard of them, but why are so many bad guys unaware? I know we’ve met a few bad guys who’ve heard of them before, but they were specifically seeking out the A-Team in order to neutralize them: Decker, our rednecks from last episode, and of course the cabal of uber-bad guys who tried to take them out in Deadly Meneuvers. But this is the first time standard, common criminals had actually heard of them before. The A-Team has been in the media enough (to say nothing of their near-legendary status in folk lore) that the entire country (including bad guys) should at least be familiar with them and their exploits.

I want to start seeing bad guys do a double-take when they learn they’re dealing with Hannibal Smith. I want them to take one look at B.A. and know they’re up against an unstoppable force, not just because he looks tough but because of who he is. I mean at this point, only sheer hubris (and not ignorance) should be keeping bad guys from just surrendering the moment they see any one of our heroes. As our clients in Showdown were already aware of, no one can go up against the A-Team.

Of course then we might not have a show, so forget all that stuff.

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