surveys & polls

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



Season 4
COMBAT! episodes:

[A Day in June]
[Any Second Now]
[Just for the Record]
[The Squad]
[Lost Sheep, Lost Shepherd]
[Forgotten Front]
[Missing In Action]
[Rear Echelon Commandos]
[The Chateau]
[The Prisoner]
[Escape to Nowhere]
[The Celebrity]
[Far from the Brave]
[The Quiet Warrior]
[Cat and Mouse]
[I Swear by Apollo]
[The Walking Wounded]
[The Medal]
[The Volunteer]
[No Time for Pity]
[Next in Command]
[Night Patrol]
[Off Limits]
[No Hallelujahs for Glory]
[Battle of the Roses]
[Hill 256]
[The Sniper]
[One More for the Road]
[High Named Today]
[No Trumpets, No Drums]

Back Up Next
reviews by Jo DavidsmeyerEpisodes rated from 0 to 4 bayonets

(027) Battle of the Roses

* *
2 bayonets

Written by
Rik Vollaerts

Directed by
Sutton Roley

Produced by
Gene Levitt

First aired 02-Apr-1963 (Episode 26 of Season 1)


Saunders finds a beautiful walled garden untouched and in its center, a childlike woman (Jeanine) lost in a private island of beauty and peace surrounded by the horrors of war. Saunders fails to convince Jeanine that they must flee before the German bombardment. She won’t leave the confines of the garden, thinking that it has the power to protect her. Eventually, he and the girl’s governess force her to leave, but she escapes back to the magic of her garden walls, that continue to shield her.


Jack Hogan, Rick Jason, and Vic Morrow provide some nice moments in "Battle of the Roses," discovering an island of serenity in their violent defense of a French village. I enjoy the looks of complete incredulity and awe as Kirby and Saunders find the garden. Hanley finds his little corner of peace in a quiet discussion in the night with Saunders. Guests Antoinette Bower is perfect as the woman who’s mind has been shattered by the war she refuses to acknowledge.


This is the first of fifteen episodes directed by Sutton Roley. The camera is very mobile when Roley is behind it, prefering fluid dolly shots to hand-held camera work. He brings much motion to the visuals even within very cramped stories, such as "Glow Against The Sky" and "A Rare Vintage." He crowded the frame in moments of intensity, putting a four-shot into a frame than can only comfortably hold a single head-and-shoulders shot, or filming a tight closeup on a portion of the face that fills the entire screen. Peabody recalls that "Sutton Roley was a good lens guy. He had very inventive ideas about where to put the camera and how to move it and how to block a scene. As good as anybody in the business."

He eschews the hand-held camera in favor of the fluidity of movement offered by the dolly. The final images in "Battle of the Roses," where the camera shows us Saunders through the idyllized vision of Jeanine, are quite lovely. In those shots, Roley brings viewers just briefly into Jeanine’s world of beauty, closing off all the destruction, and focusing only on the man and the rose and the kiss. For that flash, all the ugliness of the world and of the war are gone.


  • Kirby with M1, Caje with turtleneck.

  • Saunders has no need of his Thompson, he is just as lethal with garden implements.


Vic Morrow as Sgt. Saunders
Rick Jason as Lt. Hanley

Guest star Antoinette Bower (front credit only)

Jack Hogan as Kirby
Pierre jalbert as Caje
Steven Rogers as Doc
Dick Peabody as Littlejohn
Tom Lowell as Billy Nelson
Fletcher Fist as Brockmeyer
Bill Harlow as Dorsey


Penny Santon as Celeste Fourant

Back Up Next