Saturday, September 14, 2013

"The Big Amateur" or "Maybe he's a ding-a-ling."

Time at last for the episode revolving around "Officer" Dengle.

I thought men faked being police so that they could rape women or to mess with the system, like con men or something.

Turns out, I was being *far* too closed-minded.

Possible Skid Row location shot, 1967?

They have portrayed Skid Row twice in the series so far: their first cop killers episode, and later when Virginia Gregg ran her dead husband's Ponzi scheme.

We saw this view when we investigated Virginia Gregg's "stolen" jade.

Do you hear a lullaby?

I believe this is a snippet of our Hollywood & Vine camera car footage.

Close up of the desk blotter, black multi-line phone, intercom, the black circle thing that seems to support a single pen?

Once upon a time in LA, 1968 was happening and there was a man pretending to be a peace officer in such a peculiar way that his name could only be Dengle.

Lots of great costuming details here for Del Moore.

This is a black rotary dial phone, everybody. At the bottom are five buttons to change lines, and the far left button puts the present one on hold in order to change lines.

Don't hold me to this, but do you suppose that "911" was adopted in part because of the raw commitment that one had to choose to employ to dial that nine. You had to get it all the way around to that silver bracket; then the number one a couple of times to verify that you're for real. 

(213) 654-5211

So, Dragnet recorded before the "555-xxxx" law passed?

Oh, card-sorting computer-machine making another cameo appearance on the show:

Driving quite quickly with modernist architecture marking the boundaries.

GTA: Dragnet.

Next on the docket, drop in on Keye Luke and enjoy some colorful Dragnet style:

We haven't been to a place like this since we were sniffing out that neo-nazi.



Thanks, Keye. I agree.

Let's go to the sound stages at Universal and speak to Carol Byron really quick.


A world without Zip Loc

Still, that's a lot of baking for housewives raising more than a couple of kids at once.
This episode is one of the infrequent intersections between dragnet and small fry.
Other instances include Robbie, Paquito, and the two little Stanley girls.

Say Dengle 47 times and approach the number of times that all of the characters invoke his name.

Thrifty Drug Store, Bowling, looks like a Super 8, and Richfield's, of course.

Say Dengle 444,444,444,444 times and Nyarlathotep will come tuck you into bed.

Bert's secretary was hiding a crazy table lamp!

Drive right under there.

Blue and orange.

Joseph's. what else?

Los Angeles Police Department
University Division.

That is some severe architecture.

The scale is still ok, even if the relationship with the street is underutilized.

Like Joe says, it's a city on wheels. Not a lot of love for the pedestrian in L.A. by 1966.

re-entering PAB with a helicopter shot of the parking kiosk.

Bert Holland reluctantly accepts this award for being the semi-likely to become an eventual ironic pet here at Everyone Nods.

Fire trucks with no tops show up on Colonial street.

What's going on with that? Our fire vehicles all have tops around here. Perhaps it's a humid-subtropical thing.

That's no sorority house, sister. It's Uncle Elwood's house, to be sure.

Last time we had a "ding-a-ling" with an awkward surname, our perp was the Glenn Procustan villain.

Do you have that feeling that you've been here before?



We understand. This is all really messed up, you guys.
I wanted to link you to a Dinosaur Comic, but this is just weird and sad.

Let's skip the production piece for right now and just Twin Peaks out what we're seeing here.

Times like these, things you and I can't even fathom, are the reason why we need police.

Also, if I may continue to dream, I'd ask for our country in which everyone who needed some kind of mental health treatment could get to a doctor and have help with their medications, have plenty of comfortable, healing talk therapy sessions (at the very least), and generally have a chance at a personally fulfilling life. Just a shot, for the sake of happiness.

I'd wish for a strong DSS to serve the people that had all of the resources it required for their jobs - caring for their neighbors. Helping.

That sounds pretty American to me. Whatever part of the country we are in, in our hearts, (I hope) we are a nation of people that would help and forgive one another. Even if that means something small like the elevator in your building is out and you can lend a hand, or something big like the malodorous aftermath of a hurricane.

They're the worst, but we gotta have them.


Gideon C. Dengle

Placed on probation for a period of one year.

With respect to having to watch this episode, it presents the very opposite of a Top Ten episode. Good grief, what a snooze-fest! It does feature many of Dragnet's recycled scale-paid supporting players.

Keye Luke was nice to see again.

I stand by my choice to file it under "Dragnets to fall asleep to" - but watch out for that boisterous closing credits sequence. 

The only defensible components are these:
*Writer Henry Irving made up Dengle because that's hilarious.
*Writer Henry Irving put it in over 45 times in a single script.
*The editing is a bit feisty. The cuts are quicker, establishers, shorter.
*It demonstrates well the economy of a Mark VII production. 


Jack Webb as Sergeant Joe Friday
Harry Morgan as Officer Bill Gannon
Del Moore as Tyler Finch
Clark Howat as Captain Lambert
Bert Holland as Harry Wilson
Keye Luke as George Lum
Carol Byron as Ardith Roach
Stuart Nisbet as Gideon C. Dengle
Dave Carlile as Captain Dan Packard
Ron Wilder as Bob Greene

Art Direction - Russell Kimball
Set Decor - John McCarthy and John Sturtevant
Costumes - Vincent Dee

Aired 25 January 1968

Written by Henry Irving

Keep an eye on your duck man,
Suzy Dragnet

Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle.

Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle.

Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle.

Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Dengle. Lt. Dangle Psych Review


  1. What street was the (former) Thrifty drug store shown in this episode on?

    1. That is something I would sure like to know!
      Maybe someone will tell us eventually.

      It's probably near Universal Studios based on my Dragnet observations thus far.

  2. Wait a minute. Burt's secretary looks like none other than Laugh-In's JoAnne Worley!

    "it presents the very opposite of a Top Ten episode. Good grief, what a snooze-fest!" Agreed, Suzy Dragnet. I got sick of hearing that guy get lauded.

    1. I know, right!?

      Wow, Laugh-in? I only remember a couple of episodes of Martin & Rowan's.

      Suzy Dragnet

  3. I grew up in LA in the 70s/80s, I really miss those old buildings architectures.