feedback surveys

Combat! Season 1
Combat! Season 2
Combat! Season 3
Combat! Season 4
Combat! Season 5



Season 3 COMBAT! episodes:
[Season 3: Overview]
[Silver Service]
[The Long Walk]
[Mountain Man]
[The Duel]
[Operation Fly Trap]
[The Impostor]
[Losers Cry Deal]
[Point of View]
[Brother, Brother]
[The Hard Way Back]
[The Little Carousel]
[Fly Away Home]
[A Rare Vintage]
[The Enemy]
[A Gift of Hope]
[A Walk with an Eagle]
[Birthday Cake]
[The Cassock]
[The Town that Went Away]
[The Convict]
[The Steeple]
[More than a Soldier]
[The Long Wait]
[The Tree of Moray]
[Cry in the Ruins]
[The Hell Machine]
[Billy the Kid]
[Beneath the Ashes]

Back Up Next
reviews by Jo Davidsmeyer * Episodes rated from 0 to 4 bayonets 

(083) Birthday Cake

bayo1.gif (815 bytes) bayohalf.gif (587 bytes)
1.5 bayonets

Written by Ed Adamson
Directed by John Peyser
First aired 29-Dec-1964
Episode 15 of Season 3


Littlejohn receives a birthday cake from his mother, with the explicit instruction to not open until the 21st. He carries it on a dangerous patrol into enemy territory. On the mission, also, is Cantrell, a man waiting for orders to go home. Littlejohn's adherence to his mother's request brings the squad into harm's way and Cantrell to doubt he'll live to see home.

bayo1.gif (815 bytes) bayohalf.gif (587 bytes) REVIEW:

Littlejohn receives a cake on the 20th, with instructions not to open it until the 21st (which 21st? It doesn't say). The audience endures a day of this cake causing complications for Littlejohn and for an obnoxious translator forced to go along with the squad and the cake.

The script makes Littlejohn come off as a slow-witted bumpkin C something that he is not in most episodes. This story could not quite decide if it was truly a comedy. There's a bit too much bloodshed, angst, and abandonment of wounded soldiers to really make it amusing. The episode originally aired Christmas week, just before the new year.


  • Filmed at Korbel winery.
  • This episode is first time Dick Peabody is credited on his own title card, but still listed after Hogan and Jalbert.
  • First on-screen credit for wardrobe man Beau Vanden Ecker
  • On the walk back, the squad stops and Saunders looks through binoculars. He says that nothing is there, but people are moving in the shot.


Vic Morrow as Sgt. Saunders
Rick Jason as Lt. Hanley (does not appear)

Phillip Pine as Pvt. Steve Cantrell

Jack Hogan as Kirby
Pierre Jalbert as Caje
Dick Peabody as Littlejohn

Jean del Val as French Farmer
Beau Vanden Ecker as G.I. Driver

Back Up Next