Wednesday, August 8, 2018

BJ and the Bear S3 E9: A Bear In The Hand

Originally aired on March 17, 1981
Directed by Chrisatian I. Nyby II
Written by Michael Halperin

Yes, BJ, we all like pants too

Grant and Steiger kidnap Bear! Plus, there's a lady from the government (who is good "friends"*) with Grant investigating S.C.A.T. regarding funds. In order to get Bear back, BJ begins a campaign of shenanigans. Will it be enough?

 Scuzzy Adams tries to kidnap Bear
Steiger brought his Chimp Sack (TM)

Hooray! Another super fun episode. Three in a row! Thank Goodness. I was getting a little lost in the negative for a while there. This one succeeds by simply being fun. At the very start, we get to see an average day in the life of BJ and the seven lady truckers. Coming back from hauling a load. Sending Stacks out to pick something up. All charming. I could have watched an episode of that. Then, people start trying to kidnap Bear. I wasn't fully on board with that at first. However, at the point where Steiger tries to kidnap Bear (and does), I realized that this was wackiness occurring and I hadn't caught on. Huzzah!

We must! We must! We must explode his bust!

Grant has a girlfriend? Gross. Well, he does have a child so he must have had a wife. But, still...

You think this is rough
You should see the European cut

Once BJ has Grant tell him that all bets are off and there are no more rules (not in so many words but more or less that), then the episode becomes fun. Actually, as I'm thinking about it, if they picked up the pace a bit it could have been even more fun. BJ rigs a bust of Grant with explosives and blows it up during a ceremony unveiling it. He ties a chain around Grant's bumper so when he leaves his home wackiness ensues. And he has Stacks sew a receiver into Grant's coat so they can listen to him.

Whomp 'em, BJ!

It's that receiver that provides a nice little twist near the end. (SPOLIER-ish!) BJ and friends learn some info about something at the S.C.A.T. station regarding Bear and the company's books. BJ and one of the gals (Grant's daughter Cindy) plan to sneak in. Grant finds the receiver and loudly announces that he's changing the plan. To trap BJ! Oh no! I honestly didn't expect that. I thought it would be clean sailing for BJ all the way through. It's a nice touch. It makes a perfect excuse for all the fun stunting and nighttime car chases that follow! Hooray again!

Shenanigans, Sexy

There's a very interesting moment in this episode. At the end, BJ has given a copy of S.C.A.T.'s books to the lady. It looks like there might be some trouble for Grant! But, he tells BJ, that there won't be. All the books will show is that $47,000 seem to be unaccounted for and he will make sure that money is accounted for before she comes back. BJ did all that and came up with nothing. BJ points out (setting aside getting Bear back) that it doesn't matter because he had fun and he annoyed Grant. It's very rare for a show like this to state something like that outright. "You think you saved the day but you did very little and I'll still be here next time." Rarer still for the hero to say "I know. I'm having fun." It's a nice moment. Grant and BJ seem to know that this is a game and they enjoy playing it. (Although, Grant does usually get the short end of the stick.)
 Bear Has Got A Gun
Quit Goofing, Steiger

I really enjoyed this episode. It was a little slow... or maybe too long? I'm not sure. It went on a bit longer than I thought it would but that's OK. I do wish (as I mentioned) That they could have come up with some more fun stuff for BJ to do to Grant but you can't have it all. Three good ones in a row! Come on, show. You've got five episode left. You can do this.

Car chase stuff

Do take note: Bear has been "featured" in three episodes of the show. One per season. Each time it's about him getting abducted in some fashion. Hey, if the shoe fits wear it. Hey, if the banana peels, slip on it. Hey, it's a chimp dressed like a guy named Bear! It's everything.

Comedy is funnier when damp

*"Friends" with their mouths, if you know what I mean.

I just felt like more Stacks

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