The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. 1.23 – Wild Card

I think I enjoyed this morning’s episode of Brisco County, Jr. more than everybody else did. It’s certainly nowhere as over-the-top and ridiculous as the previous one. It’s a slower story about New York mobsters moving into the casinos of Reno, with much of the tension coming down to a high-stakes poker game, which is still over our kid’s head. He did love one of the bad guys’ comeuppance at the end. Rather than shooting the fellow, they use the town’s newfangled electric power lines as a trap, keeping him caught in an alley with sparking wires acting like steel bars.

The episode, co-written by Brad Kern and John Wirth, introduces Dixie’s sister Dolly, played by Elaine Hendrix, who was the best thing about Fox’s short-lived relaunch of Get Smart the following season. The main baddies are played by Paul Ben-Victor, who’s been either a cop or a criminal in everything made for American TV since about 1990, and Peter Dobson. The summer before Brisco launched, Dobson had starred in an absolutely delightful flop that nobody but me remembers. Johnny Bago was an really silly show about a New Jersey mobster who turns state’s evidence but gets recognized and becomes a fugitive on the lam in an RV, chased by the Mafia and his downright mean ex-wife. It only lasted eight episodes, but if it ever shows up streaming or on DVD, you should definitely check it out.

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