By Kerensa Cadenas and Noel Kirkpatrick
Season 3, Episode 18: “The Richest Man in the World”
Original airdate: Feb. 19, 1979
Noel: I know we normally begin our discussion with hashing out/complaining about the episode’s plot, but I think this week deserves a slightly altered discussion as we talk about Diana’s outfit in the episode.
While the episode feels like it’s toying with wanting to set up a spin-off with Henshaw and Barney, I think Diana’s killer ensemble deserves the spin-off.
Kerensa: Diana’s outfit–there are no words. That hat! The plaid coat! And she didn’t even take the hat off when she twirled multiple times, I don’t even understand how that worked. Also, the Richest Man’s fur jacket was pretty incredible too.
I actually was pretty into this episode–it had good action, some jokes, I knew who all the characters actually were and Diana talked to a lady!
What did you think?
Noel: I liked it okay. I was happy to see I.A.D.C. doing something that I.A.D.C. should’ve been doing, so that was a nice change of pace. There were spies and double crossings and jilted lovers of gazillionaires.
I will admit that I was distracted by the kid who played Barney because, well, I thought it was the kid who gets electroshocked during the ESP experiments at the start of Ghostbusters.
Kerensa: I.A.D.C. doing something they should be doing?! WHAT?
I hope to become the jilted love of a gazillionaire one day…sigh.
The character that most distracted me was the guy at the end who I believe was following them. It looked like Grant Show from Melrose Place! I was super confused.
Poor Barney. Although when we had that extended scene with him and the dog–I wondered if we had stumbled into another CBS show of the time.
Probably the most important thing that happened in this episode was Diana and Steve both calling our favorite computer, IRA. What did you think about those calls?
Noel: It looked like Tiger from “The Girl From Ilandia!” I was devastated that the that girl and the creepy reporter had abandoned the dog! The poor thing!
UGH. IRA. I don’t know what I’m going to do with that smartass computer and its female vocals. It is so bored and playing jokes on Steve and being a jerk to Diana. Maybe it’s one of those House things where the computer already solved the case but just like Steve and Diana (mostly Diana) running around and figuring it out on their own.
Also: Is okay to call IRA from a pay phone? Is that a secure line? That seems risky.
Kerensa: IRA is the worst! Also, did the female vocals joke on Steve seem to indicate he’s lonely and single? Yeah, maybe. I mean when they ask Ira for any help he won’t even make any effort to do so. What is Ira’s purpose? Literally nothing. He does nothing.
Diana is always making those kinds of calls from pay phones! We should talk to her about that.
What else did you think about the episode?
Noel: I refuse to believe that Steve is lonely and single. I bet he has shag carpeting in his pad and a bed that’s in a shape of a heart that also rotates. PLAYA. He was just looking a new lady since he’s likely slept with every one in D.C. Except Diana, of course.
And Ira’s there to provide talking computer-related humor, something I imagine was put in there for the kids in the audience. Unless adults like talking Lite-Brites, too.
I did joke at the start about a spin-off, and a little bit of me did feel like Barney and Henshaw were being primed to get their own show, but I think I’ve fallen into a trap of thinking that any time the show spends a lot of time with the guest stars. I cannot imagine what the Henshaw and Barney should would be, though, so I’m probably off-base in that regard. Unless you vibed a potential spin-off from them, too?
Kerensa: I just imagined Steve living in Rock Hudson’s apartment in Pillow Talk. He probably has slept with every one in D.C. Maybe he should move to LA too!
Yeah, I didn’t get a spin-off vibe. But they did spend quite a bit of time with Barney and Henshaw. Was it just me or was Barney kind of annoying?
Also, there was SO MUCH Wonder Woman slo-mo running in this episode.
Noel: Barney was annoying. But, to be fair, he’s living in a shack in the woods. We’d be annoying too if we had to rely on rewards for lost dogs and glass bottles for cash.
Yeah, they do like the slo-mo recently. But the show’s use of editing has helped to provide a nice work around their budget constraints. The driving and the running after the car proved to be fairly exciting, and all it took was some rapid cross-cutting! It was good enough for the Soviets, it’s good enough for a 1979s action adventure show!
Kerensa: I guess that’s true. I think I would collect lost dogs for rewards just so I could hang out with the pups! (God I hope so!)
Haha! That was a pretty good scene though. For whatever reason, the opening credits seemed extra long to me this time–or have I completely checked out during them at this point?
Noel: I think the opening credits are the same length they’ve been a while now. But I have also taken to fast-forwarding through them.
Next up: “The Man Who Could Not Die”