Remington Steele:  Pierce Brosnan and Stephanie Zimbalist
SOTW: Episode #31- My Fair Steele
by Xenos1981    (Fri May 25 2007)
Ladies, ladies...Lovely ladies...

Tonight for your viewing pleasure..."My Fair Steele". Not one of my favorites. The only thing I can recall off-hand about this episode is that Remington is shirtless in one scene. Gggggrrrrrrrrrrr!!! (Laura must be INSANE!!! Good God, woman!!! LOOK AT HIM!!!) Sorry...I digress. Watch and post, ladies...
 

Xenos

Mamma Mia!!! Pierce Brosnan...Proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy

by TeenSteele   (Fri May 25 2007)
..I think we messed up somewhere along the line because My Fair Steele is episode #32... not 31.

Unless I missed something.. but http://www.tv.com/remington-steele/show/806/episode_guide.html?season=0&tag=season_dropdown;dropdown;5
 
 

"You lived with a man who wears white belts? Am I disappointed"
BoaW 08/07
 

by picac    (Sat May 26 2007)
That's because they break up Steele Away With Me as two episodes.

I think the guest actors in this are all great from Crockett down to the lawyer. I like the actress that plays Tracy and Roxie even though Roxie as a character is a bit over the top in her "blue collar" crassness. My favorite though is the butler — he’s just marvelous with all his clipped snide comments and haughty disapproving expressions.

I enjoy this episode. There's no romance but there is a great deal of sharp and fun dialogue, good acting, some insight into Steele's past, a nice display of how well Steele and Laura now work together easily tossing back and forth clues and conclusions (albeit still with some shouting and fighting) and Mr Steele in a towel!

Steele knows Laura so well, he knows she’s about to blow and suggests they leave but she insists he go up and they take the case.

    "You're not an American, are you?"

    "No, but I'm inordinately fond of mom, apple pie and baseball, if that will help."
 
 

Baseball, eh? Doesn't look like it in Second Base Steele. :D

    "You, uh, wouldn't happen to be Italian, would you?" 
 
 

Not Italian either. It just isn't his day.

I love all the silent physical things Pierce does in this scene, the matter of fact way Steele helps Crockett from the bed, his look of interest and quiet disapproval when he says he kept Tracy’s twin from her, the way he watches Tracy and her father together amused but then disturbed at her perceived flippancy about his illness, and the way he so easily holds the lighter for Tracy like a true gentleman.

Frieda Milch? Yikes. Makes Myrtle Groggins seem almost like poetry.

    "Hmm. If you were Italian, you could count on it."

    "If it's any consolation, I love linguini."
 

There may not be romance but there is jealousy in the way Laura very proprietorally grabs – rather almost yanks his arm toward the door.

So we cut to Laura exploding at the office. Steele knowing it was coming listens to it all rather amusedly and with his feet up. Poor Mildred then enters the fray and gets barked at. But she gets her own back albeit unknowingly by saying that’s "Oh, that's all right, Miss Holt. We girls get a little temperamental at times" then gives her hints on how to get through those emotional days. Sexism from all sides. LOL!!!!!!!!

    "I still don't feel right about this, Ross Crockett was our client, and HE wasn't even sure he was going to tell his daughter."

    "Tracy would want to know, believe me."

    "You're just overly sensitive about someone having a secret past."

    "Laura, it's one thing to conceal your past by design. Another thing to have it concealed FROM you." 
 
 

I have to agree with Steele here. Crockett was thinking about telling Tracy so she’d have someone when he died and Tracy has a right to know. Besides I bet Crockett hadn’t paid his bill or a retainer yet anyway. :p

It also gives us another little peak into the reality that Steele’s past and family has been concealed from him.

"This isn't a movie, and it's DEFINITELY not Victorian England! You're as bad as all the rest! What a typically chauvinist point of view! You think women are pieces of clay, waiting to be MOLDED!"

    "Nonsense, Laura. You molded me, and look how well I turned out!
 
 

Zing! A direct and accurate hit. :D This is a great fun shouting match with really rapid fire dialogue especially as Steele then quickly monologues about how George Bernard Shaw would proud of them. I bet this is one of those episodes where they had to write in extra scenes to compensate for the quick pace of the delivered dialogue.

    "Laura, demonstrate how a proper lady walks across the room, please."

    "Oh, oh, well, I couldn't- with all these people watching--"

    "Of course you can. Up you get. Up, up, up, up, up, up, up, up. There you go...stand right there. Go" He gives her a swat on the bottom and then sit back down in the arm chair, saying, "Voila."

    Laura straightens her collar, then does a very stiff model's walk across the room, managing to trip once in the process.

    "There you go," Steele tells Roxie. "Just like Miss Holt- only better."
 
 

It’s ridiculous that Roxie can’t walk in heels that aren’t that high. Just because she’s a waitress doesn’t mean all she ever wears are sneakers. That she doesn’t walk like a lady is a different matter and maybe understandable. But the entire scene is worth it for Steele looking slightly disheveled, shirt out hair mussed and then his slapping Laura on the rear, and how he says that last remark. Priceless.

Interesting that Laura goes up to break the safe, especially since she requires a mechanical device to do it (where do you get one of those anyway? ) and leaves Steele to Roxie. I guess she didn’t want to play Pygmalion and Galatea in public. Nice jump from the roof though!

    "Well, don't you take things when you're on vacation?"
    "This isn't the Holiday Inn."

    "Okay, okay. I gotta go to the head. The coffee goes right through me."

    "There's a cabana over there," Laura tells her.

    "Hope it's nailed down," Steele comments.
 
 

LOL!

Nice form by Mr. Steele jumping into the pool - a quick discarding of jacket and shoes makes it look like he's done this before and knows the protocol, as does the CPR. It's very nice how well he and Laura work together here without really exchanging words. They both know what to do.

And the scene slo mo, rewind and repeat were all designed for. ;-)

    "Surely you've seen a man in a towel before, Mildred."

    "Oh, but- you're not a man, you're my boss. And we have to keep the integrity of our respective roles."

    "Old fashioned thinking, Mildred," Laura points out as she looks at the papers.
    "Well, how would you feel if I came to the door wrapped in a towel?"

    "Quite right, Mildred. The employer-employee relationship MUST remain sacrosanct." 
 
 

Laura as proven countless times before is blind and oblivious. Though you’d think Mildred would have got used to Steele changing in front of her, the first episode together and he was taking his pants off in front of her. But then he wasn’t her boss then, only her "husband". ;-) Steele can't resist changing the living room anyway to better hear the clues - though to spare Mildred’s sensibilities he does it behind the screen. Darn it.

Mr Steele and the doorbell. It is growing on him. By the fourth time he’s following the notes with his fingers

    "Quite simple. We provide money for broken hearted lovers. If you've given your time, your energy, and your love- and your partner has upped and left you- or died, we make sure you're taken care of."

    "Oh. Shouldn't you be able to- provide for yourself?" Laura asks, laughing.

    "Some of us can," Samantha admits. "Some of us don't want to. It is for the latter that this charity exists. We help avoid messy and expensive palimony suits- and of course, all contributions made to us are tax deductible."
 
 

Bwahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!!! The option of some of them can't isn't even considered -- just those that don't want to. It’s too bad Megan didn’t know about this in Hearts of Steele, she might not have to touch her toes for a living. ;)

"Laura- does this mean- the butler did it?" -- snort.

    "Um. But for the luck of the draw, Roxie could have been the heiress and Tracy the truck stop waitress."

    "A person can't let his birthright stop him. Look at you."

    "Well, I've been lucky. I've encountered good opportunities."

    "And you've made the most of them. However you began, you've come a long way, baby."

    "I, perhaps.".

    "Are you insinuating that there are those close to you who haven't been as fortunate, or haven't had the same abilities?"

    "Laura, there are bits and pieces of my past that are as obscure to me as they are to you. It's at moments like this that I realize- they're less painful that way. Would you be averse to - uh- changing the subject?"
 
 

More insight into Steele’s past and a reason he doesn’t want to talk about it. He’s not being mysterious just to be mysterious -- it’s painful and he doesn’t know everything about his past.

FASHION:

Steele: All his clothes are gorgeous here from the dressy to the casual and everything in between. Beautiful dark navy suit and gorgeous brown tie in the opening scenes. His three piece brown suit with dark vest is just as gorgeous. Steele in blue jeans and a blue jean jacket – n-i-c-e. Love the boots too. He also wear a lovely stylish leather suit jacket in the episode. The towel though gets top honors even though it’s a bit long. :D

Laura: I like her blue shirt and pants outfit in the opening but don’t like that medallion around her neck – it so large (larger than Steele’s and she’s smaller than him) and the silver (and I like silver) is so shiny it’s distracting. Not crazy about her print shirt either though it’s much better when she isn’t leaning against that ugly tan print chair in Tracy’s house -- serious clashing. Nice dark blue shirt dress, one of the better ones. Red plaid shirt under the blousey pleated big shouldered blue jacket - just ugly.

Mildred's red and black striped dress – looks too much like a circus tent. Tracy has some very nice outfits, including all the one’s that Roxie tries on. Stylish and expensive but not overwhelming or tacky. My favorite outfit though is Claudette the step mother’s – the beige dress with the fantastic draped grecian neckline. She also has a great stylish elegant haircut that would be in style today. 

by pianoRose    (Sun May 27 2007) 
great review. I found this episode very likeable.
 

However, I find the use of one actress to play twins very distracting. Fortunately, in this episode the split screen with twins together was kept to a minimum. It's like the fake baby in the blanket for me...it takes me out of the story a bit ( I begin to focus on the actress playing both parts because I can't forget that it's the same person).

But despite that, I agree the dialogue and just the unspoken level of comfort and closeness between L and R are wonderful to watch.
 

by everglade68   (Sun May 27 2007) 
Ace, thank you for your post on "My Fair Steele". Like always, you do an awesome job of picking out the most interesting things of the episode. I have yet to rewatch it but will do so just to see all the neat things that you wrote about.

Thanks again for taking the time and providing RS fans with such an extensive
look at this episode.

Isabel

by Xenos1981    (Sun May 27 2007)   
Well, I'll be honest...I haven't watched this episode as much as some of the others because of the appalling lack of romance. (And Brian Alan Lane is one of my favorite writers because of his penchant for writing humor and romance all at once! TSK, TSK, TSK.) HOWEVER, this time around, I found it rather enjoyable. The dialog is very snappy and we get to see the struggle Laura goes through being a woman PI. Plus, we get to see Mr. Steele in a towel. OMG, OMG, OMG!!! After that point, I have no idea what happened in this episode...I was way too distracted. (I'll have to re-watch it sometime.)

Let me start with guest stars. Good casting all around...Though I found Roxy to be a bit over-the-top. Ann Dusenberry was much more believable as Tracy. Of note is that she worked with Stephanie in "Elvis and the Beauty Queen" in 1981. Wonder if Steph had anything to do with her getting hired. (Oh, Judith, dahling!!!) Also of note is that Junior Crockett was in "North and South" in 1985 with James Read. The butler was an absolute hoot!!! Loved when he was wielding that gun with the huge barrel! LOL! And seeing soap opera veteran Judith Chapman as Ross Crockett's mistress was great. Also loved Ross and his wife, Claudette. Yes...Good casting all around. Oh, almost forgot...One "criticism" of Ann Dusenberry. When Remington rescues her from drowning and starts doing mouth-to-mouth, she came to way too early, IMHO. If I were her, I would have let him do that a lot longer! Oh-ho-ho, yeh-heh-hes!!!

My favorite scene was when Mr. Steele was in a towel. Did I mention that? OMG!!! Someone smack Laura, please!!! Mildred was more distracted by that gorgeous site than Laura...WHY?!?! And if Mildred were smart, she wouldn't have said, "Oh, but you're not a man, you're my boss. And we have to keep the integrity of our respective roles." Why are these women so daft?!?! I'd encourage him to come to work like that if I were them!!! Other notable scenes...Mildred's "Belle Krebs" stint (LOL)...Mr. Steele diving into the pool to save Roxy (he just looked so damn good, eh?)...The towel scene...Laura "blowing up" in Mr. Steele's office and then Mildred talking about "emotional days"...Ross's mistress talking about women who don't want to take care of themselves. This is such a sexist episode...In a good way, though. It just is so darn funny! Kudos, Brian Alan Lane...Despite your appalling lack of romance.

Ace already mentioned most of my favorite lines, but I'll add two. One is when Remington is teaching Roxie how to be a lady and she inadvertently knocks over Laura's Faberge egg and apologizes. Steele says, "Uh, uh. The rich NEVER apologize." Ain't that the truth!!! Also liked the "momma bear" side of Mildred coming out when Roxy says, "Boy. He's really somethin'. I'm even startin' t'like the way he talks." Mildred responds, "Claws in, honey. He's spoken for."

The clothes are really nice in this episode...The towel especially. *drooling* Mr. Steele in jeans (always appreciated)! His jean jacket...His casual shirt (especially when it's untucked)...The towel...His cowboy boots (and I usually don't give a rat's behind about cowboy boots)...His lovely suit...The towel...Even that leather jacket looks great on him!!! I mentioned the towel, right? I remember liking one of Laura's outfits and one of Roxy's outfits, but all I can think about right now is that towel. Good Lord, ladies!!!

I've got to get back to work now. Looking forward to more posts. Thanks for reading and have a nice holiday weekend!
 

Xenos

Mamma Mia!!! Pierce Brosnan...Proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy! 

by MickeyBoggs    (Sun May 27 2007)
Not one of my favorite eps, but any Steele is better than no Steele!
 

Memorable Stuff

- I love the glint in Laura's eyes when she tells Steele to go ahead and meet Mr. Crockett. You can just tell she's going to do some snooping on her own while he's upstairs.
- Roxie stuffing her pockets with Tracy's knicknacks and again at the Crockett mansion
- Steele trying to get Laura to go along with his Pygmalion idea for Roxie by pointing out how she helped mold him into the man he is
- I am totally amazed at how SZ can walk on that rooftop in those heels!
- Belle Krebs of Houston...LOL
- "The Lover's Fund" - definitely a unique concept!
 

Character Development

- Very nice of Mr. Steele to volunteer to drop the client if he won't meet with Laura too. Though it's certainly something he can handle, he knows it's ticking Laura off and he doesn't want that.
- I believe this is the first time Mildred tells someone to back off from one of her kids.
 

Favorite lines

R: Apparently Ross Crockett was a better actor than we gave him credit for. He just convinced his doctor he was dead.
--------------
R: You molded me, and look how well I turned out!
--------------
R: Dedication doesn't punch a time clock, Mildred.
 

Hair & Clothing

- Mr. Steele in blue jeans & boots.....nuff said
- Mr. Steele in a towel - even better! (How convenient Tracy happened to have a screen for Mr. Steele to change behind!)
 

Goofs, Headscratchers & Misc

- Who is that faux Fred? I didn't realize we had another Fred (except stunt drivers) until S4.
- Mr. Crockett looks remarkably healthy for a man on his deathbed. And in his closeups he frequently looks as if he's about to break out into laughter.
- Ann Duesenberry co-starred with SZ in Elvis and the Beauty Queen
- Tracy's car has been parked for 48 hours in a one-hour zone. They're supposed to go "immediately" to pick it up. Yet, not only have they changed clothes, it's actually the next morning before they get there! 

by everglade68    (Sun May 27 2007)
Xenos, I think that towel is being sold in eBay right now.

Isabel

by attagrrrl    (Sun May 27 2007)
Well, I wasn't going to rewatch this episode, because it's not a fave. Laura and Steele are such failures as Henry Higginses--Roxie is no Eliza Doolittle. And I hate her fake accent. However, your reviews make me think I probably like this more than I remember, so I'm going to try to check it out after all.
by picac    (Mon May 28 2007)
To be fair, Henry Higgins had far longer than a day to transform Eliza. But then Eliza's squawking made Roxie's voice seem benignly refined. :D
by Xenos1981    (Mon May 28 2007)
OMG, Isabel!!! Time to raid the kids' college fund!!! e-Bay, here I come...
 

Xenos

Mamma Mia!!! Pierce Brosnan...Proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy!
 


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