Monday, October 9, 2023

Great Moments in 70s and 80s TV History: Jessica Fletcher has eyes for...Dick Butkus?

In a first-season Murder, She Wrote, "Sudden Death," Jessica Fletcher, who has inherited a share of a pro football team, "accidentally" wanders into the shower area, and it sure looks like she has wandering eyes. The late great Dick Butkus happens to be on the team, known in this episode as TANK MASON!

Tank looks great, but the "defensive captain" of a pro football team at the age of 43? Impressive!

Jessica is asking about a possible theft in the locker room, but she just happens to do it when the team is in the showers, leading to a run-in with Tank Mason, who says (and, yes, I am taking this out of context), "They don't call me Tank for nothing," even as he takes haste to cover himself with his towel.

His eyes are up THERE, Jess!

OK, so when Tank says he didn't expect to see her there at that time, during the showering, she feigns modesty and runs out. We know better, though, right?

The entire cast for this episode is top notch, featuring known 70s performers like David Doyle, Jan Smithers, Tim Thomerson, then Bruce Jenner; and character actor standouts like Allen Miller, James MCeachin, and Warren Berlinger. I'm on Season 9 of a series watch, and those days of exciting loaded casts like in the early seasons are long gone.

Dick Butkus never returned to Murder, She Wrote despite the simmering tension that is so prevalent in this episode.

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