Combat! reviews by Jo Davidsmeyer
Episodes rated from 0 to 4 bayonets
Written by Anthony Wilson
Directed by Alan Crosland, Jr.
Produced by Andy White
First aired 20-Apr-1965
Episode 31 of Season 3
Saunders, trapped behind enemy lines, tries to pass himself off as a
shell-shocked German corporal. In his odyssey back to his own lines, Saunders encounters a
suspicious Nazi doctor, an inexperienced GI with writing aspirations, and a compassionate
German sergeant who takes Saunders under his protection.
Vic Morrow performs brilliantly as Saunders in "Odyssey." A
beautiful script by Anthony Wilson takes viewers on a gentle ride through the countryside,
slowly picking up pace until the story, by the fouth act, is accelerating on a breakneck
roller-coaster ride. A true tragedy in the classic sense, "Odyssey" shows the
hero who wins a bitter victory, and the warrior with the fatal flaw that leads to his
Tino Pollack is excellent as the tanker who dreams of being a writer and Bert Freed is
touching as the German sergeant killed by Saunders.
NOTES, ODDITIES, AND BLOOPERS:
German jeep is really American, painted with German markings.
Sasha Hardin, a regular German who was featured in five episodes, plays the evil German
lieutenant who suspects Saunders and shoots his own men for cowardice.
Saunders spends episode in a one-size-fits-all German uniform removed from a dead
German. But it has no bullet holes or blood. It looks not only tailored for Saunders, but
Bert Freed (the friendly German sergeant in the episode) was the first actor to play the
role of Lt. Columbo, in a 1960 episode of The Chevy Mystery Show, eight years before Peter
Psychological war paralyses have been called various names: shell-shock (World War I),
combat fatigue (World War II), and post-traumatic stress disorder (Vietnam and later).
Vic Morrow as Sgt. Saunders
Rick Jason as Lt. Hanley
Conlan Carter as Doc
Dick Peabody as Littlejohn
Pierre Jalbert as Caje
Bert Freed as Sgt. Weber
Teno Pollick as Pfc. Loring
Peter Coe as Orderly
Sasha Hardin as S.S. Lieutenant
Maurice Marsac as French Peasant
Ivan Triesault as Doctor
Paul Werner as German Teenage Soldier
Bing Russel as Gaines
Larry Billman as Reiter
Marika Monti as French Peasant
Robert Donner as 1st American GI
Otto Reichow as German Guard #2
Vince Barbi as German Guard #1
Eric Forst as German Lineman