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Thread: The Devil and Mr. Frog is 50

  1. #1
    Happy 50th to "The Devil and Mr. Frog"

    Mr. Mike has a great review of it here:

    Once again, not one of my favorites but we see the Five-O team in action as a team. McGarrett and crew have been working with Gainham (William Zuckert) to help get his kidnapped son Scotty (Geoffrey Thorpe) back. Scotty has managed to escape his kidnappers but only after the ransom of $300,000 is paid. Mr. Frog winds up dying at the bottom of a cliff, not from the fall as he was chasing Scotty but rather being shot by his partner "The Devil" aka Gibbons (Frank Marth). As the episode progresses, it becomes about the money: Gainham wants it back and "The Devil" is trying to unload it. In the end, the bad guy is killed and Gainham gets his money back. However, there are highlights.

    For one, there's Tot Kee (James Hong) and his secretary Missy (Melody Patterson). This pair is kind of creepy if you think too hard about it but they are a highlight of the episode. I think it's because there seems to be more there than meets the eye between the two and they are constantly conspiring on something!

    Another is the sarcasm: one scene in particular I recall (it's been awhile since I've watched) has Gainham all ticked off in McGarrett's office as McGarrett and Danno are looking over files. Gainham demands to know what Five-O is doing to recover his money. McGarrett merely looks up and Danno says something to the effect they're looking for the devil, meaning the other kidnapper. They both know the guy can't sit on the money forever and he's going to be tempted to spend some of it. During another scene, they tell Gibbons the same thing.

    Between the bluffs and the tailing they figure it out. As McGarrett says at the end, "the case is closed." Happy 50th!

  2. #2
    Mike gave this show 3.5 stars (out of 4) when he first reviewed it in the 90s. Upon reviewing it again recently, he gave it 2.5. Quite a downgrade!

    Usually I agree with Mike's reviews, but I have some differences in opinion regarding this episode.

    The age of Scotty's dad Daniel (the actor was 54) and Scotty (8) bothered Mike, but I thought it was fine. Given that Daniel was wealthy, it's not far fetched at all that he would have married a younger woman. Give Scotty's age of 8, his wife could have been in her mid-40s when the episode took place, and easily been able to have carried Scotty. In fact, I am almost 40 years older than my son, and his mom is less than 2 years younger than me.

    Mike also didn't feel that Gibbons was an interesting villain. I disagree. While he wasn't one of Five-O's best villains, I thought he was fine, and in fact he was more realistic than some of the other villains we've seen.

    I did agree with the criticism of the final foot chase scene, where Gibbons was a horrible shot when firing direct shots at various Five-O team members on th beach, missing them all. This was in contrast to his excellent marksmanship in shooting one of Tot Kee's men on his boat, from a long distance! It also bothered me that McGarrett took so long to shoot him dead, despite Gibbons repeatedly firing at him and other members of Five-O. Clearly shooting him dead would have been justified the second he brandished the weapon, and definitely after he fired a single shot. (This is also standard protocol for police, to where they are supposed to use deadly force if chasing a victim who is either firing at them or drawing a weapon, even if the victim missed or is running away with his back turned after firing.)

    There was a goof in the opening scene. Scotty escapes in the middle of the night, and indeed he was found wandering down the road at 3:30am. However, while he clearly runs away in the dark, by the time "Mr. Frog" falls off the cliff while chasing him, it looks more like twilight, and you can see blue sky. This would make no sense for the middle of the night, and there's no time of year in Hawaii where first light is before 5am.

    The relationship between Tot Kee and Missy (Melody Patterson) is interesting, and it's strongly implied that it's also romantic in nature. Missy seems to act as a secretary, but as the episode wears on, it seems more like she's his partner in crime. Missy looked really hot, and they made her up to look older than her actual age of 20 at the time of filming. (I would have guessed her to be around 26.) During the second half of the episode, she wore a very short polka dot dress. She married James MacArthur in 1970, less than a year after the episode aired, and they stayed married for 5 years. Patterson didn't live a very long life. She died at the age of 66 of "multiple organ failure" in 2015.

    James Hong, who played Tot Kee, is almost 91 and still alive. He was only 40 when this episode was filmed, but looked older.

    I give the episode 3 stars.

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