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CBSRMT Episode Information
Title:
The Dead, Dead Ringer
Plot:
An ex-cop finds work as a messenger for local mobster. When he delivers the message, he is surprised to walk into a murder. The woman has a smoking gun in her hand, and a body on the floor. When he sees that he is a dead ringer for the woman's dead husband, he suspects that something fishy is going on.
Episode:
0386
Air Dates:
First Run - November 27, 1975
Repeat - May 8, 1976
Writer:
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Rating:
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6 Responses to Episode 0386


This program is a very good play centered on a woman, her husband, and a gentleman she meets that looks virtually identical to her husband. Prepare yourself for some interesting listening.

Set in 1931, a young police officer is about to lose his job due to cuts in the department. It must be New York City because as a "last job", his superior asks the officer to transport a mobster cross-country from Sing Sing to Alcatraz. As they travel by train, handcuffed together, the officer and the prisoner talk. The mobster tells the officer that he looks exactly like his right hand man (see the title), who just happens to be married to his daughter, although she does not know she is his daughter. Make sense so far? As they travel along, the prisoner asks the officer to do him a favor after he drops him off at Alcatraz. All of this you learn at the outset, and this is the beginning of the adventure. Does the rest of the action occur in San Francisco? This is just too goofy.

A woman finds a man who looks exactly like her husband. She uses him to help murder her husband.

A bright young policeman is facing lay-off when his commander sends him off on one last mission - to escort a famous criminal to a more secure prison via train. En route, the detective is asked to send a message to the criminal’s daughter. Asking why him, he learns that he bears an uncanny resemblance to someone else which would add strength to the message.

When the policeman decides, with little justification, to help the woman and pose as her husband, it reminded me of the scene in "Amazon Women on the Moon" in which a spaceman says "It's only a hunch...." and then proceeds to remove his helmet on an alien planet. I enjoyed the part where the cop decides to store the body in the freezer.

I like the extended news broadcast before and after the show . . . more on that later. Maybe real cops don't follow "type" at all, but I'm sorry . . . the voice of Howie the Cop just didn't work for me. He sounded like a shoe salesman, or a piano teacher, or a Quaker pastor. (My appologies to all salesmen, teachers and pastors.) He sounded like, in a room of a hundred people, the gentlest soul in the whole group. But then again, Columbo isn't your typical hard-nosed cop either. The news and commercials were very good, and today I miss the public service announcements so common back then; I guess these days radio stations don't have to do them and we, the public, don't need them. ??? But I almost choked on my coffee at the beginning! Right after E.G.'s intro and before Act I we get the commercials. An ad for Miller beer which was pretty typical at the time; followed by a short-story Public Service announcement. Poor boy begging for food (won't you help him?) and then this; "George W. is an alcoholic, but wishes he wasn't." I know that I shouldn't spend so much time on commercials, when RMT stories really are the main thing here; and I shouldn't get political . . . but gawd I found that funny!

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