Lady Killer


SUMMARY

Hugh Hefner clone Tony Mann hires the Angels to check into some unpleasantness plaguing the staff of his risque publication, Feline Magazine. It seems that several of his 'Feline Centerfolds' have been found dead and with their hair cut off. Not surprisingly, Jill appears most disturbed by the hair mutilation rather than the murders - and after drawing a short straw, she's not pleased to be the one going undercover as the next Feline waitress (and most likely candidate for the next nude centerfold).

Jill: "I haven't posed in the nude since I was six months old!"

Sabrina plays herself and rooms with Tony, giving outsiders the impression that they are an item. Kelly does her bit as a lip-syncing lounge singer while Feline Jill serves drinks and fends off advances from gross customers. She also meets Dave Erhard, Tony's unfriendly best friend and business partner, who regards her with a disapproving glare.

During a court side photo session for the magazine, somebody tries to kill Jill with an exploding tennis ball which discharges when it meets her volley.

Later, Sabrina's spending a little one-on-one time at Tony's place (in a PG way!) and listening to him mope about his plight. As they enter his bedroom (for whatever reason) Sabrina notices a suspicious wire running under the bed and saves Tony from a trap someone set up to electrocute him. As the only person with access to Tony's house, Dave Erhard now becomes the focus of the investigation.

Kelly sneaks/breaks into Erhard's house and rifles through his desk, where she discovers that his calendar had all of the "accidents" at the club marked in advance. It isn't enough evidence for a court case, so the Angels pretend to blackmail him. Kelly is sent out as bait to meet Erhard at an oil refinery, but the deal goes bad when he pulls a gun. He chases her around trying to kill her, but ultimately falls off a rooftop.

With the bad guy out of the picture (but not quite dead), the Angels think the case is closed, but then someone breaks into Jill's beach house at night and tries to chloroform her while she sleeps.

Suspicions then turn to Paula, the club's pleasant but slightly off-kilter head waitress, after she invites Jill to stay at her place for safety. Drowsy Jill decides to take a nap there, giving Paula the perfect opportunity to chloroform her and harvest her golden tresses. Sabrina and Kelly, finally tipped off, burst into the apartment and, as Sabrina physically subdues Paula, she tries to stab them with scissors. When Paula's wig comes off in the struggle she freaks out and attempts to jump out the window screaming "Don't look at me!". Bri manages to talk her off the ledge, and from the proceeding speech, they find out that she has some minor scars from an old car accident, which somehow is the reason she's been killing centerfolds.

A quick office wrap-up scene assures us that the deranged Paula is getting help.

BACKGROUND CHECK

Lady Killer Episode #8 Season 1, Episode 8 Airdate: Nov 24, 1976 Writer: Sue Milburn Director: George McCowan Guest stars: Hugh O'Brian

WHAT'D YOU THINK?

Rate this episode:

CURIOSITIES

• When Tony walks into the office, why does Charlie introduce Sabrina and Jill via speakerbox but then leave Kelly to fend for herself? (And it's like Bosley doesn't even exist.)

• In one shot Dave Erhard's unconscious body is shown in a different position than the way he landed.

• You have to commend producers for not having Jill pose nude in an episode centering around her having to pose nude. For viewers who are disappointed by this turn of events, you may be consoled by the fact that Farrah later posed nude for Playboy.

• Kelly must be a pretty bad singer. On stage at the club, she pulls a Lina Lamont - Bosley is behind the curtain, operating a reel-to-reel recording while she lip-syncs, although Jill and Sabrina seem to be fooled. Kelly describes her own vocal range as "poor to awful" in Angels on the Run. The song she sings here is the classic "Embraceable You".

• Paula safely stores her bottle of chloroform in the kitchen cabinet beside cans of Libby's Tomato Soup.

• Please go back to the part with Paula and the scissors. You probably watched Paula and Sabrina, because that's where the action is, but the real best part of this scene is how Jaclyn Smith is acting in the background. Watch her.

• Martha Smith, the girl that gets killed at the beginning, went on to co-star with Kate Jackson in Scarecrow and Mrs. King.

 

BAD GUYS BEAT DOWN

BIMBOS

SHOTS FIRED AT ANGELS

SHOTS FIRED BY ANGELS

DAYS TO SOLVE CASE (?)

ANGELS CHLOROFORMED

TURTLENECKS

CHARACTER DEATHS

FASHION

Jill is smokin' in her little red Feline outfit while Sabrina makes some unfortunate wardrobe decisions and spends a lot of this episode looking like grandma's curtains.

Wardrobe Repeats Perhaps the most famous repeat of all: Kris wears a dress identical to Jill's feline outfit in Circus of Terror.

Kelly wears the dress from the Angels' Time Magazine cover, and Sabrina borrows from her The Mexican Connection wardrobe.

Farrah Fawcett Lady Killer

Cheryl Ladd Circus of Terror

Jaclyn Smith Lady Killer

Charlie's Angels Time Magazine

Kate Jackson Lady Killer

Kate Jackson The Mexican Connection

ROMANCE

Sabrina has one of those sorta "we have to pretend to be dating for the case but we're not really but I do sorta like you" relationships with their client, Tony Mann. After the case wraps, we learn that Tony apparently has invited Sabrina out to dinner for real, but it's still the end of senior citizens' week; he's never heard of again.

SCREEN TIME ANALYSIS

Bet you thought Jill won, but Sabrina got a few moments more.

  • KELLY
  • JILL
  • SABRINA
  • BOSLEY
  • HOW MUCH OF THE EPISODE HAS AT LEAST ONE ANGEL/BOSLEY IN IT 87%

ACTION

Hide-and-seek rooftop shootout? Kelly getting strangled a little bit over the edge of a building? Bad guy falling to his death (kinda)? Jill in a nightgown fighting off her chloroform attacker? Crazy Paula trying to stab Sabrina with scissors? Great stuff.

WHO WORE IT BETTER?

wardrobe-farrah-fawcett-cheryl-ladd-charlies-angels
Who wore it better?
  • 65.71%
  • 25.71%
  • 8.57%

THE ANGRY ANGEL

During a fight on the top of an oil silo, Bosley rescues Kelly by shooting a round into the air which causes the attacker to let go of Kelly. Not content with merely being rescued, an enraged Kelly throws the helpless man off the side of the silo to his death. Okay, in the next scene they say he didn't die, BUT SHE DIDN'T KNOW THAT. Charlie's most violent Angel is earning her stripes.

MURDER ATTEMPTS

This episode has two of the most unique murder attempts of the whole series. Somebody wires a waterbed to electrocute Tony (or Sabrina?), and then a tennis ball-shaped bomb gets launched at Jill during her tennis photo shoot. Neither were very effective; the electric bed didn't seem to effect the area where, y'know, the occupant would be. Tony might have had singed hair, and Jill was startled at most. Still, grade A for originality. Chloroform poisoning gets a D at best.

REPEAT OFFENDERS

George McCowan also directed Consenting Adults, Angel Trap, The Vegas Connection, The Sandcastle Murders, Mother Goose Is Running for His Life, The Jade Trap, Cruising Angels, Three for the Money.

Lory Walsh - Tony's babe Carmel later plays the kidnapped skater Rita Morgan in Angels on Skates.

 

OUR TAKE

Holly's Rating: 4.5 Stars This is so cool - the look alike killings and threats of hair mutilation just never get old. Lady Killer (which I guess is a pretty good play-on-words) has some moments of solid action and suspense, plus the always enjoyable creepy factor that Paula brings to her scenes with Jill. This is one of three times we get to see Farrah Fawcett play her favorite sport on the show - unfortunately this time, someone tried to blow her up.

Kenny's Rating: 4.5 Stars Jill plays a feline and is at her flirty, sexy best. I love how Sabrina interacts with the club owner. Kelly's lip sync act at the club always makes me laugh and the twist at the end makes for a classic episode.

Anna's Rating: 4.5 Stars 90% of my love for this episode is the baffling hilarity of the final takedown. The weird hair-petting, Libby's soup, Kelly's expression, this scene is just a gem.

Greg's Rating: 4.5 Stars My favorite thing about this ep is how the title didn't give anything away. Their is this strange mixture of the lurid ( Angelverse versions of Playboy Bunny's being murdered) and the outrageous (exploding tennis balls, Sabrina snatching some chicks wig off in a fight, electrified beds.) that somehow works. Everyone has cool stuff to do. The killer is exactly who you think it is. Jill goes undercover as a playboy bunny is such an obvious and pandering plot idea it simply screams Aaron Spelling. Above average.