Moonlighting (1989) – In ‘N Outlaws, Eine Kleine Nacht Murder, and Lunar Eclipse

This is it, the last instalment in my viewing of Moonlighting. The fifth season comes to a conclusion with this post, so lets dig into the last trio of episodes.

First up is In ‘N Outlaws. Written by Marc Abraham, this Agnes DiPesto (Allyce Beasley) story first aired on 23 April, 1989.

Agnes is preparing to meet Bert’s (Curtis Armstrong) family at a party, but has received a summons to jury duty. As she learns about the events that are presented at the trial, she sees similarities between the relationship between Maddie (Cybill Shepherd) and David (Bruce Willis) – which are reenacted by the cast in a soap opera-esque dream . These similarities convince her that the defendant shouldn’t be found guilty of the crime of passion that is set before the court.

This deadlocks the court, and Agnes is sequestered, missing the party, and not a single one of the Bert’s relatives believe Agnes is real. Poor Bert. His family is more than a handful, and he seems so very out of his element among them. He’s a more balanced person with Agnes around, and it’s obvious he needs and loves her as much as she loves him. Of course, that doesn’t seem quite the case as he assails the court with his discoveries while running about the room to avoid the baliffs. He does this when he takes the case into his own hand, intent on solving the case once and free Agnes from her sequestered situation. Not to mention proving to all of his relatives who are at this shindig that she’s a real person.

A fun episode that lets Beasley and Armstrong shine.

agnesmaddie

Eine Kleine Nacht Murder was written by Barbara Hall, and it first aired on 30 April, 1989. This one sounds like a riff on The Bodyguard, although this was released long before the movie came along.

Maddie witnesses a murder, and is almost a victim herself, at the hands of the murderer (Ray Wise!). She is assigned a police bodyguard, Detective Sergeant Donnigan (Joseph Hacker), as around the clock protection.

David and Bert are suspicious of Donnigan’s motives for hanging around, though David shouldn’t talk, as things are still happening with Maddie’s married cousin, Annie (Virginia Madsen) – and Annie feels trapped in the middle of it, lying to Annie’s husband about where his wife is.

All of this causes stress on the working relationship, and whatever else they have, between Maddie and David, as they end up sniping at each other throughout the course of the episode, and there’s a real sense of dislike going on between them.

There are some nice moments for David and Annie, and there is the feeling of potential in that relationship, but David is aware of Annie’s marital status and while he doesn’t address it, it no doubt influences his actions.

And hey, is Donnigan all he claims to be?

Maddie’s life is in danger, and it’s David who comes to her rescue, and saves her… from Donnigan? Or is there something else going on?

moonligtingeine

Lunar Eclipse is the series finale. It was written by Ron Clark and brought Maddie and David’s story to an end on 14 May, 1989. There are lots of threads to tie up before the end of the episode, and the script tries to give us much service to the fans as it does the story.

Agnes proposes to Bert, who agrees but has some misgivings. Mark (James Stephens), Annie’s husband shows up, causing problems for David’s love life, but also makes him realise that the two belong together and works to get the couple back together.

Bert and Agnes get their wedding, but what is going to happen with Maddie and David?

The series came a long way from where the series creator, Glenn Gordon Caron had started it, and a lot of it was really good, with some standout episodes. With a fun sense of banter, breaking of the fourth wall, and meta references, the show could be smart, fun and entertaining, and sometimes it just floundered.

So there it is, the end of the series, the Blue Moon Detective Agency is now closed. Next week, I’ll be on to something else, and while the last couple of seasons weren’t as strong as the series when it started, it was still fun to enjoy – though not all of it has aged so well.

moonlighting

 

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