Hannibal (George Peppard) and the team are in trouble in the first episode up this week. Deadly Maneuvers was written by Richard Christian Matheson and Thomas E. Szollosi. It aired, originally on 28th February, 1984. In today’s terms of television, this type of episode would be the culmination of a season long arc, but here it’s just another episode.
Hannibal is putting Face (Dirk Benedict), B.A. (Mr. T) and Murdock (Dwight Schultz) through their paces, with training and activities. Hannibal and Murdock seem to be enjoying it, but the other two don’t seem to be.
Unbeknownst to the team, a number of people they have crossed over the past two seasons, have met up, and commissioned Douglas Kyle (Ed Lauter), a former major, to hunt the team down, and capture them, before turning them over to those who would see them put down once and for all.
Sadly, it seems it’s really easy to take down the team, they use the old honey pot ploy to take Face in, catch Murdock with a dog, and poison B.A.’s milk. It’s up to Hannibal to break into the compound with Tawnia’s (Marla Heasley) help and rescue his comrades, who are doing their best to escape on their own.
Once the team is altogether again, Hannibal taunts Kyle into a final confrontation on the A-Team’s turf, where he outmaneuvers, and out thinks each of the baddies. Because, once they are together the team is nigh unstoppable.
This one could have been big, huge in fact, but instead, it just plays as a standard episode. Oh, how television has changed…
Semi-Friendly Persuasion was written by Danny Lee Cole, and had an airdate of 8 May, 1984 (that’s a bit of a break between new episodes!). Geoffrey Lewis guests stars as the baddie this week, one Kale Sykes. He’s a bit of a bully, and he’s got some of the town on his side, though no one hears from the other side of the town, do these people not know what’s going on? Weird.
Anyway, he’s bullying a religious group that has moved into the area, and want to build a meeting hall before they build the rest of their homes around it. For now they are living in tents and trailers, and seemingly hated by most of the town.
The religious group, known as The Society of Men, is led by Karl Peerson (Tim O’Connor) and at his side is Eric (Flash Gordon himself, Sam J. Jones!). They approach the team to help with their meeting house, with the caveat that there is no violence.
The team does their best, trying to work with the group and find non-violent ways to deal with Sykes. But it just doesn’t meet with Peerson’s approval, who fires the A-Team (I think that’s a first).
But now that no one is paying them, there’s no one to tell them that they can’t deal out a bit of a beat down to Sykes and his men…
So maybe the message here is violence is the answer? I’m not sure 🙂
Until next time!