The Equalizer (1988) Target of Choice, and Always a Lady

McCall (Edward Woodward) and Mickey (Keith Szarabajka) have their work cut out for them in the penultimate episode of season three of The Equalizer. Target of Choice, written by Kevin Droney, first aired on 6 April, 1988.

A killer, Hawkins (Kevin Geer), is out of prison, and he’s got his murderous eye on the man responsible for putting him there, Jonathan Grey (Michael Parks). Grey’s wife, Marian (Verna Bloom), who is suffering from MS, and whose frequent hospital visits make her a target of opportunity for Hawkins has reached out to McCall for help.

Bloom’s performance is a little over-the-top, but Parks is as cool and at ease in this role as his countless others.

Woodward’s McCall gets to deliver a number of great bits of dialogue, especially in confronting Grey’s son, Devin (Lenny Venito) who simply wants McCall to kill Hawkins before he can target either of his parents.

Mickey gets to be a bit rough and tumble as he stakes out Hawkins’ rundown apartment, and even Jimmy (Mark Margolis) gets in on the action. I love the way the series has been faithful to its supporting characters, despite the way Mickey was treated through parts of this season. It gives the story and the characters a bit of grounded reality and a sense of continuity.

I like how Mickey is tasked with keeping Hawkins distracted while McCall hunts down information about him, his crime, his connections, and a final way to stop him. Honestly, Mickey gets to be a bit of a bad-ass in this episode, and it’s cool to see him that way.

But is everything going the way McCall wants, or is Hawkins going to be able to have his revenge?

The final episode of the season, Always a Lady, was written by Peter McCabe from a story by Scott Shepherd, it brought the season to a close on 4 May, 1988.

McCall is determined to find the man responsible for finding the party responsible for killing one of his former company proteges, Meredith Browning (Anne Twomey). But even Control (Robert Lansing) knows that she wasn’t what she always appeared to be, and may have in fact been involved in some criminal activity after she left the Company.

And this activity may have led to her death.

McCall is out to get the truth and gets lost in his own reveries about her, even as he draws closer to those involved in Meredith’s death, which turns out to be a well-connected criminal organization in which she was involved.

We get to see that McCall may have been romantically involved with her, but she wasn’t a fan of his work, despite the fact that they both worked for the same organization. He’s increasingly troubled to learn the realities of who she was as opposed to the way he saw her, and what effect will that have on him as he goes after her killers?

Oh! and watch for an appearance by The Next Generation’s Susan Gibney as Angela Drake, one of Meredith’s colleagues.

Next time, we start the fourth and final season of The Equalizer, we’ll see how McCall deals with the last round of problems that comes his way. It’s been an entertaining ride so far, let’s see if the series closes out on a high note.

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