Remington Steele:  Pierce Brosnan and Stephanie Zimbalist


SOTW: Episode #61- Now You Steele It, Now You Don't 
by everglade68    (Dec 21, 2007)
Xenos has Internet problems and has asked me to start the thread for our next 
SOTW. 

Hard to believe, but we only have four more episodes in Season Three. 

"Now You Steele it, Now You Don't" is one of those episodes that left me with more questions than answers. 

First of all, where is Remington for the first eleven minutes of the episode. Don't remember other episodes where he is out of the show for such a long time. 

So, competent Laura takes a case and doesn't know the schedule in which the antique shop is opened. How does that get past her? 

Laura goes to the dock looking for Mr. Steele and asks two guys about him. That is it? She doesn't even try looking further for him and just goes back to the office. 

Norman Keyes actually helps them by getting the autopsy report, why? 

Why would Mr. Bigelow just crumble and confess his involvement in the murder of Mr. Sterling? 

And lastly, I am no Freud, but what the hell was the slapping scene about? I still don't quite understand it. Why would Remington think that it was Laura slapping him? And finally, why oh why would it take a torture scene for Laura and Remington to say that they love each other? 

I think this had to be one of the strangest episode of the series. 

Isabel

by MickeyBoggs 
75% of the way through 3rd season already. The kleptomaniac episode combined with a classic locked-room mystery. 
 

Memorable Stuff 

- Good mystery with Laura a pawn for the fake Majak and then trying to figure out what's really going on. At least the Agency got paid this time! 
- Mildred gets fired up thinking "the boss" is going to let her do some good digging and then he asks her to gather information on vacation spots. I wish we could have seen her face when he pops back in the office and says "...and the Fiji Islands". LOL 
- Like the playful banter when they break into the Sterling household 
- Nice to see R&L working so well together again and enjoying a romantic moment when they find one. Though it may have kept them from getting caught by the baddies, I'm sorry the big break in the case had to interrupt them. 
- What a unique character, our Weasel! I don't ever recall a character on any other show who lived in the junkyard. Robert Pastorelli, RIP. 
- Cute tag scene 
 

Character Development 

- I don't like the slapping around scene where there's the association with Laura beating a "confession of love" out of Mr. Steele. I don't like its implications. I wish the commentary had gone into more detail as to why PB didn't like it. 
- Once again Mr. Steele displays his amazing recuperative powers. He's beaten to a pulp but just a few moments later manages to assemble the few items in the room for his athletic getaway. 
- Nice to see Mildred's so concerned about Laura's welfare. Like the hints about the hotel rooms in Fiji having their own hot tubs! Laura seems a little bewildered by her enthusiasm but it's nice to see she doesn't just dismiss it out of hand. 
- One of the few times I remember seeing Laura get so frustrated over a case 
- Well, Mildred wanted to be more involved in cases and here's her big chance! Though somehow I bet this is NOT what she had in mind! Great job by Doris of getting into the role. (I crack up as Mr. Steele has the fish "kiss" Mildred under her chin!) 
 

Favorite lines 

R: I must say, Laura, I can't understand why you didn't involve me in this initially. 
L: I thought it was just a routine tail and you're hardly one to relish routine. 
R: Or did you just want to prove that you could do it without me? 
L: I don't have to prove anything. 
R: Oh of course not. At least not to me. As far as I'm concerned, you're the perfect subordinate. 
(if looks could kill) 
-------------- 
R: Look, Laura, we've all had our shoulders to the wheel lately...you, obviously, more than me of course...but you could use some R&R. I mean, we all could, couldn't we Mildred? 
M: Hear, hear! 
L: Mr. Steele. My client has disappeared. I've got a kleptomaniac who doesn't even exist. A man supposedly killed himself because of me. And you're prescribing a vacation?! 
R: Ah, well, when in doubt, relax! 
-------------- 
L: What have you been...doing? 
R: Well let's see...so far I've been beaten to a pulp, crammed into a steamer trunk, locked away in an abandoned warehouse, drugged, tortured but, well, otherwise shown a raucous good time 
 

Hair & Clothing 

- Love Laura's hair & outfit from the opening sequence - the soft yellow turtleneck with the plaid jacket 
- Also like the soft blue turtleneck & steel(e) blue blazer 
- Not many men can wear a leather sport coat, but Mr. Steele can 
- Love the blue Correia necklace Laura wears 
- Blue shirt, blue jacket, red-striped tie, slicked-back hair - our boy looks like a government agent to me! 
- I like Laura's berry-colored sweater 
- Mr. Steele looks smashing in his dark suit 
 

Goofs, Headscratchers & Misc 

- How did Mrs. Sterling know how to reach Laura at home? Mr. Sterling never referred to Laura by name. 
- There are 2-3 episodes where we see Mr. Steele for several scenes before we ever see Laura. This is the only episode I can think of where we see Laura for quite awhile before Mr. Steele 
- SueJue found this PAXed scene that happens right before the tag: http://krebsfiles.com/nowyousteeleitscrap.html

by dtalley
I believe it was mentioned during the DVD commentary that Pierce was sick when they started filming the episode so they had to film around him during those first scenes. That's why R isn't in those early scenes. 

Debra

by picac 
The writers on the DVD commentary were wondering themselves where Pierce was and they wondered if this is was after he contracted Bells Palsy (and joking if it was it wasn't their fault) but then they realized this was the 3rd season and not the 2nd. It just seems more a matter of the episode and it's structure; a matter of Laura violating her "Have I Got A Steele For You" rule about going out on cases alone. Interestingly, she breaks the rule and Steele still winds up at the end of a beating. Rather unfair that. :-/ 
by rsskeeziks
Regarding the slapping scene: 

It's just a symbolic statement of Mr. Steele's emotional state to show that the times he isn't in control, the things about which he's confused when women are involved, are linked in his mind. He's generally so sure of himself, so confident around women, that being powerless and not having absolute answers, or easy lies, causes the painful physical interrogation from a woman to bring about a reminder of the also painful, emotional interrogation he often feels he receives from Laura. 

Tell me I took too many film psychology classes or call me a sadist, but I thought it was a rather clever way to show us viewers what goes on inside his head regarding his feelings for Laura

by picac 
I don't think it's a matter of him not being sure when women are around when he doesn't have all the answers but rather the interrogator being a woman makes the leap easier in his mind to associating her with Laura. But the mere fact that he's associating Laura and her emotional interrogations to a brutal beating is cause to raise the red flag. 

I can easily see the correlation and transition, it's clever but it's disturbing. As disturbing to me as Laura and her punching his cardboard face out, having him arrested and gloating over it fantasy in Dreams. Neither are exactly the poster moment of emotional health for a viable relationship. And while one is played for supposed laughs the other seems to be done as a cheap gimmick to get Steele to say the words "I love you" out loud without actually saying them to Laura or even really to himself because they're still clouded in confusion, drugs and from the process of a brutal beating. 

It a far too big and disturbing an emotional concept about their relationship to just toss out there and just leave lie. I can more than understand Pierce's objections to having Laura beat Steele - or rather Steele believing that Laura would and is beating him - hurting him. If you're going to do something that psychologically devastating then it has to be built on. The tag scene while clever in it's own way of addressing how neither is ready to ask the questions or hear the answers about their relationship doesn't build on it, or does in the most superficial manner. So it just gives us this glimpse into an uglier side of their relationship and uses it as a gimmick. 

by rsskeeziks
I completely get what you're saying, Ace, and would run fast and far if this were my relationship(!), but I don't think the collective writers put that much thought into it for long-term use or psychological flagging. (Heck, even siblings apparently didn't get that much long-term thought.) 

Wirth said, "How about this to give insight," the makers said "Do it," PB said, "Hey, wait a minute," and the fans said, "Wha__?" 

In typical, single-episode approach, the characters themselves have no post-episode discussions of it and nobody sees a psychologist. It was the 80s in TV-Land. 
 

by Neneithel
Well said, Skeeziks! 

I was going to say something along the same lines, but you put it better than I could have. It seems a waste of good writing when that scene is just treated as a stick to beat Laura with. People seem to forget that she's not really the one hitting him. 

by edr1109
I can't stand the slapping scene on a few different levels. 

First off, it is pretty violent and I always hate to see anyone hit Steele's gorgeous face. 

Secondly, it seems to be implying that on some level Steele feels threatened or coerced somehow in his relationship with Laura. The "I love you" confession seems more a matter of making a beating stop, (literally or figuratively) rather than his true feelings. I don't see their relationship on such depressing terms. While they both have their issues with committment, I think their love for each other is real and is just really complicated sometimes. 

Thirdly, I feel that the scene was a cheap way for the writers to give the fans a strange glimpse into Steele's feelings without having to be deep or committal about it. This bothers me most of all. I understand the writers thoughts about keeping the characters apart for as long as possible. I certainly would not have wanted a Moonlighting-esque handling of their relationship. But I also don't see the point of stringing fans along to the last frame of the final episode before there is even a hint of a happily-ever-after. It seems like a mean thing to do to the fans IMHO. That slap scene is the only time fans hear "I love you" between them and that's sad.

by everglade68

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It seems like a mean thing to do to the fans IMHO. That slap scene is the only time fans hear "I love you" between them and that's sad.
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I agree Edr and it is more than sad. The writers knew that RS was a show 
with dedicated fans who wrote thousands of fan letters a week. Dismissal of a sibling or having time frames wrong is one thing, but for fans to had to view this kind of disturbing scene is inexcusable. 

Isabel 

by Neneithel
This has nothing to do with Laura or even with how Steele sees Laura. It is about him and his attitude to relationships, which is spelt out all over the place. His feelings for Laura raise questions that frighten him. 

Perhaps my interest in psychology makes me look a little deeper than the writers intended, but to me, the fact that he is acknowledging his fear is a positive thing. The way he views it may be ugly, but it probably comes from his ugly past. It has nothing to do with any ugly side to their relationship. In any relationship, both people have flaws, fears and weaknesses. Here, Steele's are appearing. It doesn't make the relationship ugly, it just means that he, like Laura, is human. Frankly, I like them that way.

by Xenos1981
Just a few tid-bits to add as I'm so late in posting... 

1) I find the whole interrogation scene totally and utterly romantic. *sigh* I mean, who doesn't picture the person they love slapping the living crap out of them and demanding to know how they feel while being tortured by a sadistic cleptomaniac?!?! I know I would!!! That's just fabulous writing, IMHO!!! So realistic, touching, warm and true to character!!! 

2) On a more serious note...DON'T HIT HIM!!! HE'S FAR TOO PRETTY!!! 

3) At least that gawdawful scene didn't wreck the rest of the episode...Remington and Laura/Pierce and Steph had sizzling hot chemistry despite that abomination. Smooching on the ship!!! Smooching at his place!!! Woo-hoo!!! I hope Mildred took her darned good-natured time coming back with those macadamia nuts. GOOD LORD did Mr. Steele look great in those Hawaiian clothes!!! Made his perfect baby blues look even bluer (as if that were possible)!!! 

4) Who knew slicked back hair was so freakin' hot?!?! Hose me down, ladies!!! Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!! 

OK...Gonna try to comment on another episode before I have to take the kids to a party. 
 

Xenos 

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


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