Combat! reviews by Jo
Episodes rated from 0 to 4 bayonets
The Quiet Warrior
Rating: 1 bayonet
Teleplay by Gene Levitt
Story by Luther Davis and Gene Levitt
Directed by Justus Addiss
Produced by Gene Levitt
First aired March 26, 1963
Season 1, Episode 25
Syndication Order: 14
During a barrage, a mud-soaked Hanley receives special orders to proceed at once to the
cocktail lounge at the Hotel Savoy in London. Showered and spiffy in uniform, he revels in
the pleasures of the 4-star hotel. An obnoxious American journalist, Ted Slocum, asks
Hanley to settle a bet, then unsuccessfully tries to pump him for information.
Called to his rendezvous, Hanley is questioned by a shadowy figure. He is recruited to
parachute behind enemy lines to rescue Dr. Barole and his daughter Marie, the family of
Hanley's college roommate. A trusted family friend is needed to assure the Baroles after
the last failed rescue attempt. Dr. Barole is a physicist needed by the allies.
Hanley is teamed with Slocum, an experienced, fearless espionage officer and former
language teacher at a girl's finishing school. To Hanley's dismay, they parachute into
occupied France. Slocum and Hanley are met by three Maquis members. When the group is
nearly discovered by a German patrol, Slocum's quick thinking in feigning a romantic
encounter in the woods saves them all.
Hanley is reunited with the Baroles and arranges to lead them out of France tonight.
But the professor is loathe to abandon his notebook, which he had hidden in the basement
of a cafe now operated by a collaborator.
Hanley leaves to inform the Maquis to rendezvous with the Baroles in the church later
tonight. Slocum goes after the notebook. He appropriates a German officer's uniform and
enters the German-filled cafe. He bullies the proprietor into taking him into the wine
cellar. While downstairs the Gestapo arrives and commands soldiers to go with them.
Returning upstairs with the notebook, Slocum learns that the Gestapo is setting a trap at
the church. Someone in the Maquis has betrayed the Baroles.
Slocum devises a plan to detect the traitor: he changes the rendezvous spot, but tells
each a different location. The traitor will be revealed by the new location of the Gestapo
forces. Lily, the traitor, tries to run away, but is gunned down by the Germans. The
surviving Maquis members safely lead the Baroles, Slocum, and Hanley into Switzerland.
"The Quiet Warrior" is an anomaly
within Combat's exceptionally strong first season. Shifting from the show's usual focus on
the trials and tribulations of a frontline infantry platoon, this episode instead offers a
look at the workings of an espionage operation. This could have been an interesting
departure if done well. But this pedantic script drags Hanley and the audience through a
predictable and thoroughly dull spy story.
J.D. Cannon as intelligence officer Ted Slocum is charming and believable. He does a
yeoman job with the heavy-handed dialog, adding a wry smirk and cocky attitude to the
verbal tonnage. But even his light touch cannot save the interminable exposition scenes
foisted on his character. Rick Jason flounders in the excruciating exposition in his
interrogation by the shadowy Mr. Williams. Rick Jason gamely tries to add a spark to this
litany of background information, but he gets little assistance. The absence of movement,
the static camera, unenlightening lighting, and lack of background music leave him out
there to his own devices. Even his co-actor is hidden in shadows, giving no aid to poor
Jason. Perhaps to his own relief, he is uninvolved in much of the rest of the story.
"The Quiet Warrior" revolves around the Slocum character. This story could
easily be re-edited to fit in "12 O'Clock High" or any other WWII television
series. It has nothing to do with "Combat!" The Hanley character is merely a
device to link this story into the series. Once Hanley has introduced the Slocum character
and met with the Baroles, he could just drop out of the episode. It has such a
"paste-up" feel, that I wonder whether this was an attempt to launch a spin-off
series. Perhaps it was an attempt to introduce a new character and milieu into the
"Combat!" world. Or scriptwriter Luther Davis was simply retooling his own
failed pilot to work in somebody else's universe. (Returning again to Germany of the
first-half of the 20th century, Luther Davis wrote the script for the Tony award-winning
musical, "Grand Hotel.")
Whether intentioned or not, this show does not fit within "Combat!",
especially first season "Combat!" The few moments when the episode works is when
it lets its two capable leading actors just act. Hanley is delightful enjoying the
pleasures of the Savoy. Without a line of dialog, he conveys a multitude of feelings:
bliss at the scent of alcohol in a clean glass; confused amazement, then joy, at the sound
of a woman's laughter; carefully suppressed panic at the thought a parachute jump. The
editing work is also quite unusual for the series. The edits and camera work in the scene
changes are quite impressive. But the rest of the camera work is adequate at best and the
direction uninspired. On the whole, I find this episode more an enigma than an
Notes, Oddities, and Bloopers
Internal inconsistency in dates. Hanley is traveling under orders dated October 28. But
Slocum says he was in occupied Paris last week; this is strange since Paris was liberated
August 25. Believe October date should be ignored as bogus. From other episodes, I believe
that the bulk of Combat's first season took place prior to the liberation of Paris.
Accessory alert: Hanley wears his ever-present ring in beginning of episode. He doesn't
wear it once he assumes Frenchman's disguise--nice touch.
Medals: Hanley now wears four decorations: he only had the good conduct medal in A Day In June. My guesses: he now also has a campaign ribbon
and a purple heart. No idea what fourth ribbon would be.
From telephone call Hanley receives at the Savoy: You are traveling under special orders
107, Headquarters, 21st infantry division, date 28 October.
The bet that Hanley settles: How many companies are in a German infantry regiment.
Hanley meets Slocum at #45 Garden Court, Flat #5 in London
TREK connection--the woman at the bar is Barbara Babcock who played Philana, Parmin's
mate, in "Plato's Stepchildren"
For those who wonder why you hear "Forward march" clearly in the middle of
orders shouted in German ... the order is the same in English as in German.
Where does an American infantry officer advancing across France store his formal
uniform? Hanley has it by the time he steps out of the shower in London. Where's it been
all this time? Do soldier's possessions follow behind them as the army advances?
as Lt. Hanley
as Sgt. Saunders
[Note: Morrow does not appear in episode]
J.D. Cannon as Ted Slocum
Michele Montau ..... Lily
Brendan Dillon ..... Williams
Lomax Study ..... Andre
Charles Giorgi ..... Georges
Leno Francen ..... Marie Barole
Rolfe Sedan ..... Dr. Barole
Walter Janowitz ..... Cafe owner
Albert Szabo ..... Soldier
Hans Gudegast (aka Eric Braeden) appears as drunken German soldier;
Barbara Babcock in non-speaking role at Savoy Bar
There's a photograph on the table, Lt. Will you kindly look at it. (He picks it up) Do
you recognize the people?
Yes. It's the Barole family.
I understand the young man in the picture, Raymond Barole, was your roommate at college
in the States.
That's right. He was an exchange student. After graduation he, uh, took me back to his
home in France for a vacation.
Tell me, Lieutenant, did you see much of Raymond's father, Dr. Barole, during your
Quite a bit. He, uh, taught physics as the Sorbonne. He was home almost every weekend.
We used to go fishing every chance we got, Raymond and his father and I. I helped him with
his English in the evenings.
Then you would say that you and Dr. Barole, considering the difference in your ages,
were good friends? That he liked you?
That he would trust you?
(putting photo down) I guess so.
- Dr. Barole is an important physicist today, Lt., vital to the war effort.
In what way?
- In many ways. The Germans, of course, want him to work for them.
He'd never do that.
No. As a matter of fact, he's quite anxious to work for the allies. Of course, he can't
manage that until he gets out of occupied France. Which brings us to you, sir, and the
reason for your presence here. Do you follow me?
A month ago, Lt., we contacted the French underground resistance fighters and set up a
scheme to get Dr. Barole and his family out of the country. It failed abysmally.
Was Dr. Barole caught?
No. He got away by the skin of his teeth.
We're not sure. Somehow German intelligence was on to us. Perhaps they deciphered a
radio message. Perhaps there was a double agent within the Maquis itself. At any rate, a
week ago we learned where we can contact Dr. Barole. It's a village outside Ebineau (sp?),
not too far from the Swiss border, but still in occupied France. We want to get him out of
there and we need your help.
Well, what can I do?
Dr. Barole is skeptical now of whom he can trust. Therefore the go-between, the one who
gets into the French village disguised as a Frenchman, and contacts him must be someone
Dr. Barole is certain isn't luring him into the hands of the Gestapo. Someone whose
integrity is beyond question.
Like an old family friend who also happens to be an American army officer.
Precisely. Will you help us?
Well, I'm not a spy, Mr. Williams. I'm -- I'm an infantryman. I don't know the first
thing about spying.
You don't have to. An American agent will be your teammate. A chap who's made countless
jumps behind enemy lines.
(Nervously) Jumps? You parachute in?
Believe me, sir, it's safer than walking.
Well, what about getting out?
Shall we discuss ex-filtration once we know you're willing to infiltrate? The plan
itself is really quite simple, you know. The Maquis will take you to Dr. Barole's
daughter, Marie. She, in turn, if convinced you're a legitimate contact, will take you to
Why Marie? She's just a child. Why not Raymond?
Raymond Barole is dead, Lt. He was killed by the Gestapo during our last attempt to get
his father out. I'm sorry.
(Picks up picture again). Proves how wrong you can be. Raymond was sure he was going to
be the world's greatest architect . . . All right, Mr. Williams. I'll do it.
Why? For sentimental reasons? You can't breath life back into Raymond Barole, you know.
I didn't think I could.
Lt. Hanley, this is exceptionally hazardous duty. You will have only the small Maquis
group in the village and the man who jumps with you for help. Do you still want to go?
- I do. And my reasons, Mr. Williams, are personal.
Of course. (Williams steps into the light and extends his hand to Hanley)
Welcome to the fold, Lt.
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