Monday, June 27, 2016
BJ and The Bear S2 E5: Cain's Son-In-Law
Originally aired on October 27, 1979
Directed by Charles Rondeau
Written by Frank Lupo
(Rather than subject everyone to those strange shaped screenshots of past reviews, I went online and grabbed screenshots from a variety of places. To heighten that change of pace, I decided to forego captions this time around... trying something new.)
This is more like it. After the last couple episodes (especially Pogo Lil), I was getting worried about our favorite show starring a chimp and his trucker buddy. Cain's Son-In-Law is fun and exciting and brawl-filled and pretty charming. If this is the "average" for an episode of the show in this season, then this seasons should be a good time.
B.J. sees a man harassing a young woman named Carol, played by Audrey Landers. B.J. rescues her... but there are problems. Carol was engaged to that man, named Conway, and he's a police officer.. and her father is... Captain Cain! Oh boy. B.J. can't catch a break, can he? He hangs out with Carol for a while. Cain mobilizes his considerable forces... and, just at that point when B.J. and Carol are sharing a motel room... just at the point where Carol is wearing just a towel... Cain and Conway storm in and arrest B.J. But, Carol announces that B.J. and her are getting married. Is it for real? Or it a ruse to try to get Conway to step up and get her back?
I won't answer those questions here (although the screenshots might). Suffice it to say, this episode ends at Country Comfort with a big wedding... that may (or may not) devolve into pie throwing, fist fights and crowds of tuxedo-wearing men falling into hot tubs. B.J. is not a jerk in this episode. Bear gets to mow a lawn. Cain acts very vexed by having B.J. lazing around his house all day. Carol is cute as pie. It's a fun episode.
I think Frank Lupo might be a name to trust here. I've seen his name pop up on other shows and he seems to be a solid writer. I don't know if an episode of anything he wrote ever changed the world. But, when I see his name listed as Writer, I know the episode is going to be an entertaining one. This episode is no different. It's saved by the structure. The way Pogo Lil's structure involved covering the same tired ground over and over did nothing for anyone. But, Cain's Son-In-Law spends its first half with Cain going after B.J. Then, the second half starts with B.J. lounging around Cain's house before it ends at the lengthy, but fun, wedding sequence at Country Comfort. (The final fight sequence really does go on for a long time but it never overstays its welcome.) The episode is constantly moving forward, which is what makes a show like this succeed.
There's not much to really critique in an episode like this. It does what it does well. It's still entertaining today. Greg Evigan brings on the hunk. Audrey Landers is beautiful. And, Bear rides a freakin' lawn mower around. That's a good time. Can the show keep it up?