Saturday, November 9, 2013

"The Big Gambler" or "The Most Forgettable Episode Ever"

This episode of Dragnet is So Dragnet that it actually out-Dragnets its Dragnet.


Dragnet?


Dragnet.


Repping for L.A.


The golf shot from S1e1:


And the expository slow-zoom of the Police Administration Building.




It's so cosy, it's like a second home, really.


THE THREE OF US AGREE
HOW ABOUT A SPIN IN THE FAIRLANE?


 Is this a recognizeable portion of L.A.? 



ANSWER ME, VIRGINIA VINCENT


"Well, conceptually, it could represent any healthy, American automotive society in the post-mid-century. This is 1968, after all. They say that tastes are shifting, but I think everything has taken on a very conservative look which finds itself at odds with our societal values and mores. The architecture becomes aggressive.  Aesthetics, in a way, have become weaponized. The street becomes naturally hostile-- to say nothing of the automobile in this equation!"


GET OFF OF DRAGNET FOREVER

AND NEVER WEAR YELLOW AGAIN


Hi, Vic Perrin. I'm so glad you're just an embezzler and not a child molester in this one. You've been all kinds of guys. You used to tie ladies up and murder them. You are a serious Dragnet Villain.

I wonder what else Vic Perrin has played, in other series? Was he ever, like, a lovable dentist?


Correct me if I'm wrong, but this point A to point B shot seems rather a lot like backlot:




The quality of light doesn't suggest a variety of colors on surrounding buildings; plus - no tree shadows.


It's Julian Burton. We first met him when he got convicted for drug trafficking in the awesomely decorated Smashed Cessna Set Episode.


Now, he is in that set with the door. It was previously a plane rental office.


Remember when they used to try?


And this girl, Sharon Harvey. Doesn't have half the class of Merry Anders.


Again with the light shoes/pink dress. Vincent Dee, get creative, please.



ROBERT BRUBAKER, SIR


THERE IS A BOAT BEHIND YOU


I CAN'T TAKE THIS
BACK TO THE PAB SOUNDSTAGE, PLEASE


HOLD THE PHONE

MAKE MY LIFE NORMAL AGAIN




Ah, back to normal at last.


Buddy Lester. Holding it down in a red jacket! Dragnet Style is enforced!


Quirky old bartender in a red jacket, you are very helpful. 
Your lines are very snappy, as well.


They are shooting The Usual Bar Set from 90 degrees to the left.

It's dressed completely awkwardly. Is that the jukebox on the far left that was in that Skid Row hotel where Virginia Gregg was selling tape recorders?


That establishing roll up is for sure recycled from earlier this season.



Red tells the color story of heartbreak.


Virginia Gregg, what a surprise. We never thought we would see you again.


NO NEED TO BE AN ASS ABOUT IT



It's that service station from when Lillie Birnam turned up dead:




The black building at the end of the block looks much like where that karate teacher lady foiled that bank robber with the purple pillowcase.



Yes, that little blue car is cute. Let's get 'em!






Well, having an argue with a young Freddie Mercury was apparently on Vic Perrin's list of things to do today.


RADIO THAT SHIT IN


They follow Vic Perrin an hour outside of Los Angeles to a draw poker club in Clover.
We know it's really the Colonial Mansion at the end of Colonial Street.
(Thanks again, RetroWeb.)






Don Ross. Latent Prints Guy! He'll play anything on Dragnet, except a really bad guy.


I LEFT MY WOODEN LATENT PRINT BOX OUT THERE


"Fool me once, shame on you."


Isn't that how it goes?


I hope you enjoyed being a degenerate gambler on this episode. It was nice to have you back, I guess.




Henry Pendleton

Now serving his sentence in the State Institution for Men, Chino, California.

See? It could only be more forgettable if they sent him to San Quentin!

S2e27

Starred
Jack Webb as Sergeant Joe Friday (The reason for the show!)
Harry Morgan as Officer Bill Gannon (always a grounding influence.)
Vic Perrin as Henry Pendleton (twice convicted of murder, I think.)
Virginia Gregg as Norma Pendleton (Is there a dramatic role she can't play?)
Robert Brubaker as Edward Loring (Robert Brubaker. So underwhelmed by the characters he plays!)
Julian Burton as George Barnes (favors girls and calendar girls.)
Virginia Vincent as Sally Fisher (Yellow is not her color!)
Buddy Lester as Nick Gerber (our veteran TV cameo.)
Don Ross as Jim Barlow (latent prints, represent!)
Sharon Harvey as Delores Grove (A Champagne Dame with a cash register for a heart!)

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

Aired 21 March 1968

Written by Robert Soderberg

Stick around for next week when we will finish out season two with a surprise guest - you'll never guess!

Suzy Dragnet

P.S.
Thanks to FB for sharing his life with me for a whole decade!
Sorry this week's rolled out late.

7 comments:

  1. Q.) Is this a recognizeable portion of L.A.?
    A.) Yes, it's Fairfax Ave. btwn Melrose and Beverly. Visible in the bg on the right is the world famous Canter's Delicatessen, where to this day, the waitresses won't serve you dessert until you finish your dinner!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brutal!
      Los Angeles is a whole different country, basically, than the eastern seaboard… We come at things from a totally uptight point of view. A

      re the sardonic jokes something that you tolerate or enjoy? I'm really not sure what direction to take my banter with the pictures/sequences sometimes.

      Is their food bizarre at Canter's? Is the place a joke? Have you been?
      I am going to have to put together some Google Earth now that I know where to look. Super jazzed! It's time to start getting my season two retrospectives together!

      Thank you,
      Suzy Dragnet

      Delete
  2. Well, LA "used" to be a whole different place, but with so many East coast people now living here, there are many neighborhoods in LA that are basically "New York with palm trees!"

    Love your sense of humor and hilarious takes on the goings on (and egregious re-use of sets) on each episode. Hope that doesn't change.

    Canter's is no joke. They are an LA institution and haven of late-night dining. Food is pretty standard American deli comfort food. Mile-high reuben and corned beef sandwiches, hearty 3 bean soups, that sort of thing.

    http://www.cantersdeli.com/menu.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your feedback.

      I will check the menu out. Sounds like a good place. I love a good reuben!

      Not to worry, I will keep blathering into the ether (and you guys, my fun audience).

      Things have been sort of busy as the year's progressed.

      Thanks again for tuning in,
      Suzy Dragnet

      Delete
    2. I was hoping that I'd see Canter's in one of these. First time I've watched the series through since I've been there. Canter's is FANTASTIC! And also not a bad place to celebrity watch, I'm told. I've been there five times and have yet to lay eyes on one. One interesting Canter's fact: It's actually more of a New York style deli. The children of the original owners have added some more "modern" fare to the menu, but you can still get Knishes and Tongue Sandwiches. They also feature the only pickles I'll actually eat, brined on site if you can believe that. If you are ever out here you should make it a point to go. The inside has never been updated. It looks almost exactly the same in there as it did when Joe and Bill drove by in 1968! Amazing place.

      Delete
  3. That blue car is a 1959 turquoise Ford Fairlane 500; we had one just like it when I was a kid. They were pretty popular.

    ReplyDelete
  4. 1.) Hillary Clinton as the Woman in Yellow.
    2.) My wife and I loved the cheesecake calendar behind Julian Burton.Semi-nude women ALWAYS look better with Greek columns.
    3.) "Sharon Harvey. Doesn't have half the class of Merry Anders." If you insist.
    4.) I like how Buddy Lester squints one eye as he talks.

    ReplyDelete