Tales of the Gold Monkey (1983) – High Stakes Lady & Force of Habit

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Jake Cutter (Stephen Collins) takes a double hit to his love life in the episodes being revisited this week.

The first episode, High Stakes Lady (which also has an appearance by Charles Napier – who also appeared in this week’s Rockford Files), originally aired 26 January, 1983, and was written by William Driskill and Lance Madrid III.

A bit of a romance develops between Jake and Sabrina (Shelley Smith), who is a bit of a gambler, and is on her way to Tagataya to play in a high stakes poker game. Jake, enchanted by the young woman, agrees to accompany her, and it’s another chance for Jake to look dapper.

Once there, things take a turn for the worse when as Jake falls hard for her, only to learn that she’s a German spy, attempting to carry Japanese plans, including that for Pearl Harbor back to her superiors.

It’s a tough moment for Jake, because it seems he may have truly fallen in love with this woman, and its obvious she cares for him too. But, being on opposite sides of a looming war seems to leave them at an impassable stalemate, and a final showdown on the stars outside the Monkey Bar at gun point.

It’s rather sad that Sarah (Caitlin O’Heaney) gets shoved to the side by this romance, as the triangle could have been played up a little more, especially given Jake’s reactions and feelings for her in The Late Sarah White, a bare four episodes ago.

Oh well.

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The second episode, Force of Habit, aired 2 February, 1983, and was penned by Tom Greene and William Schmidt. This time around, a former girlfriend, Brigid (Pamela Susan Shoop) shows up on Bora Gora, as a nun! Jake doesn’t believe it at first, and kisses her in the middle of the Monkey Bar, shocking everyone, but Jake soon learns she’s made this choice for life.

Before they are given a chance to truly catch-up, an explosion distracts everyone from a pair of thugs intent on stealing hidden gold in a medical shipment. Commandeering the commercial clipper that the cargo is on, the thugs take off.

Before Jake and the gang can figure out what is going on, someone tries to steal the Goose, and Jake, Corky (Jeff MacKay) and Jack barely get aboard her in time.

Once there, they learn Brigid has stolen the Goose and is pursuing the clipper to reclaim the much-needed medical supplies before the situation becomes too dire.

As the pursuit continues, Brigid and Jake reconnect, but it isn’t until the climax of the episode that Brigid learns who she really is, and what path she is meant to walk.

At the point, the series is getting ready to come to a close, after this episode, the series took a month off, and then when it returned, it was no longer on Wednesdays at 8:00, it was moved to the death slot of 10pm on Friday night.

The end is coming too quick.

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