Remington Steele (1982) s02e13 Episode Script

High Flying Steele

I'm losing it.
Murder could put this little circus away.
- You did trapeze? - Oh- Hup.
I got news for you, Miss Woolsey.
I don't cotton to home wreckers.
- Mildred! - Mildred! - Guy Nickerson is a very determined man.
- Possibly a lethal one.
If you're nervous, don't go up.
Laura, look out! - Everybody's a winner tonight.
- Three ducks, and I'll give ya $100 in cash.
- Three shots for a dollar.
- Hey, Angie.
Hold down the fort for a second.
Okay, boss.
Don't worry.
Three shots for a dollar.
Hit three ducks, and I'll give you $ 100 in cash.
How about you? Okay, dolly.
You're on.
Three- Hit three ducks- Come inside, folks.
The show is about to commence.
Hit the dolls, win a prize.
Try your luck.
A lucky young man.
Come on over here.
Crank up the charm machine, lover boy.
The live one's back.
Get shills, cupcake.
Whoever's not working.
Except him.
Ah, Miss Krebs.
The glamorous private detective.
I knew tonight would be lucky for me.
I just thought I'd try another night in the beyond.
A respite from your world of dangers and deceptions? Oh.
Well, more or less.
I shan't be a moment.
You've been here before.
- No.
- Really? - First time.
- Oh.
- Good evening.
- Good evening.
My heart beats faster already.
Is it you, my lovely, or is it the stars? If she's a private detective, I'm Jane Fonda.
Since we are all strangers here today let us join hands and direct our inward karma to those powers greater than ourselves.
Come to us, O Rupert my guide to the spirit world.
Come, O grand guardian of all that is vibrant and flowering.
Send down a sign that we may know who it is you seek to address.
Rupert wants me? Rupert senses a man in your future.
A man with insatiable thirsts that only you can quench.
Please, Senor Fresco.
Tell me quick.
What is his name? His name is, uh unclear to me.
Rupert knows.
But it is you and you alone Rupert wishes to address.
Shoot, Rupert.
I gotta know.
" "U.
" "R.
" "Tur-" "Tur-" "Tur-" Turk.
Sounds so strong.
And so exotic.
I can't wait to meet him.
Yes, Miss Krebs.
Don't wait.
- But- - Hurry.
Hurry to meet your destiny.
- Will I meet him tonight? - Who knows? - But where? - When romance beckons, only the foolish linger.
- Right.
Ooh, oh, good night.
- Hurry, hurry.
Are you out of your mind! Me? Do you think I'd bring up Turk? Well, if you didn't, who did? - Rupert? - Or perhaps it was Detective Krebs.
Laura? Mildred.
Well, the early bird catches the- Whoever it was, they were certainly determined.
Or sloppy.
- What are they looking for? - Let me put something on that.
Oh, you're a truly nurturing woman, Mildred.
Miss Holt, of course, is a detective first.
I asked if you were all right.
If you start to feel faint, holler.
! Oh, Mildred.
! Ah.
! A rigging needle.
The kind they use in circuses.
The encyclopedic nature of your knowledge never ceases to amaze me, Laura.
Wonder if they used it to force the door.
But what does this have to do with this? - I haven't a clue.
- I do.
- You promise you won't laugh? - I'm not in a laughing mood, Mildred.
Well, every once in a while I get this uncontrollable urge to, uh, go to a séance.
Please, don't laugh.
Well, I've been going to one called the, uh, Fabulous Funtime Circus.
And I told the seer there that, um, I work for the Steele Agency.
Oh? What did you tell him you do? - Well, I wanted to feel important.
- Mildred.
I wanted an air of mystery.
- Yes? - I told him I was a detective.
Steele, I think you just took Mildred's lumps for her.
- Oh.
Oh, I'm sorry.
- You see this, Mildred? Close your mouth.
- I shall insert this in your bottom lip.
- I will never- Cordaro.
- Cordaro.
It has to be.
- Has to be what? The Flying Cordaros.
One of the great high trapeze acts.
Seems to me they had a terrible accident a while back.
Laura, you're an encyclopedia of circus lore.
Mildred's a séance freak, I'm a circus freak.
Professionally, I seem to be surrounded by freaks.
Somehow I feel at home.
- Can I help you? - Yes.
We're looking for the owner, uh, Miss- Cordaro.
Christy Cordaro.
My face on a post office wall somewhere? It was all over my room when I was growing up.
I wanted to be you.
Lucky you weren't lucky.
- Who are you two? - Remington Steele.
Uh, Remington Steele Investigations.
And this is my associate, Laura Holt.
- How can I help you? - Early this morning uh, someone assaulted our files- and my cranium.
We have reason to believe this someone is connected with your circus.
My people are no angels, Mr.
But they don't knock over offices or detectives.
Our secretary, Mildred Krebs, attended a séance here last night.
- Your secretary? - Secretary.
Apparently the séance ended abruptly at the mention of the name Turk.
I was there.
The séance ended because Miss Krebs was getting bilked.
Are your people always so considerate of their marks? Miss Cordaro, someone here must assume we're investigating them.
Considering what they did to our office, not to mention Mr.
Steele's head you could be in danger.
Danger's an old acquaintance of mine.
It's jammed.
I'm coming up.
I'm losing it.
Hold on! That's it.
Give us your hand.
- Hey.
That was quite a catch.
- Bravo.
! - I'll say.
- Glad I was here.
Can I see that for a minute? I thought I told you to grease those bearings.
I did.
The safety pin should've held.
- The pin's been cut.
- Cut? Sabotage and attempted murder are two things I can live without.
Insurance companies have closed down circuses for less.
I do need your help.
- Who was the man on the wheel? - Guy Nickerson.
- He joined up with us a few weeks ago.
- What's his job? Here at the Fabulous Funtime Circus we all do a variety of jobs.
Up in the air, Guy's a flier.
Down here he works the booths, does maintenance.
And the husky young man who disappeared so quickly? - Max Hardin? - Mm-hmm.
Max has been with me since before my accident.
I know Max looks rough, but he's a pussycat.
Sometimes pussycats can be dangerous.
Not Max.
Take my word for it.
Well, for the moment, we'll have to.
Uh Miss Cordaro, I think it's time you told us about the mysterious Turk.
You might as well hear it from me.
- Turk was a catcher, rouster, all-around man.
- Was? A couple of weeks ago, during the break in the storm Turk decided to go deep-sea fishing.
An empty dinghy was washed onshore.
The police figure a storm must have come back up again suddenly.
- And Turk? - They never found him.
The police called it an accident.
But there was reason to believe otherwise? Turk never won any popularity contests around here.
And like I said, murder could put this little circus away.
Most of us have no place else to go.
Even the air feels different.
Sober, rational Laura Holt with a secret desire to join the circus.
Who would've guessed? Well, when you're eight years old, and the father you adore calls the circus "dreamland" it's not hard to buy that dream.
We went to every circus we could find.
Big ones, seedy ones, right up until the time he left.
There have been times when I've imagined he ran away to someplace like this.
Well, for his sake, I hope he didn't.
You speak from experience, Mr.
Steele? For the better part of nine months, I was a fire-breathing dragon.
The Great Savini.
- You ate fire? - Breathed fire, Laura.
An illusion.
Treated paraffin, laced with alcohol and a little stupidity.
What else haven't you told me? For example, that save you did on the Ferris wheel.
I did a bit of catching.
- You did trapeze? - Oh- Mr.
Steele, I think I just figured out our M.
on this case.
Laura, listen.
Are you serious, Laura? I mean, we are dealing with an apparent murderer an attempted murder and, whoever cracked my skull a murderer who very likely knows that I'm Remington Steele! Do you honestly think it's wise to try trapeze work? - We've got to have some cover.
- Popcorn vendors.
I'm sure the Fabulous Funtime Circus needs fabulous popcorn vendors.
- It's the logical choice.
- Ah.
Now that Turk's gone, Christy will have to hire a new aerial act.
I was a gymnast in college and I did some trapeze work in the homecoming circus.
For how long? - Uh, three nights.
- Oh, I see.
An old pro, eh? We'll ask for a day's rehearsal.
And I'll have the Great "Savani" to teach me.
If I'd known the lure of the circus was gonna turn your head around completely I wouldn't have spent a small fortune on champagne and flowers.
You wouldn't try to exploit a girl's secret desire, would you? Only if I were desperate.
Any clues on Freddy the File Fouler? Um, not yet, I'm afraid.
Ohh, well, when you get your hands on him, I get my hands on him.
- Yes.
- Meanwhile, Mildred I want you to check out a man named Guy Nickerson.
It seems someone tried to send him over the Ferris wheel this morning.
Once you've initiated that, uh, we have a proposition to make.
- A proposition? - Mr.
Steele wants to expand your duties in this case.
After I got you into this? Because you did, in a manner of speaking.
Uh, we're going into the circus undercover.
And you're the only one of us who knows who did what at the séance.
We want you to come with us.
Undercover? Me? Oh! Oh, boss, what have you got in mind? Harem dancing? Um, bareback riding? - Lion taming? - Mm-mmm.
I believe Mr.
Steele has in mind something more sedentary.
Oh, what is it, boss? I have to warn you, Mildred, uh, we may be dealing with a murderer.
How far undercover can you put me? Ah.
! Hurry, hurry, hurry.
! Come one, come all.
See Mona, the fat lady.
Her girth will amaze you! Scheherazade.
See what's behind those seven veils.
See Delilah and her charming snake, Boris! Our lovely dancing girls! Uncle Sam, the tallest man in the world! The Great Savini! He breathes fire like a dragon! Ooh! Oh! The hottest act in town.
Gray Otter and his flashing tomahawks! Hurry, hurry to Cordaro's sideshow, the greatest in the world.
! Come one.
! Come all.
! For fifty cents- one half of a dollar.
! - Here you go.
- I won.
! I won.
! - Ah, hey.
You'll win with me, cutie.
- Whoo-hoo.
! - Yoo-hoo! Yea! - The brass ring, lady! I win the grand prize! - And fortune smiles, eh, amigo? - Whoo-hoo! - I give you the grand prize.
- All right! - Here we go.
The grand prize.
- Hold on, Matilda.
I'm afraid you misunderstand, sir.
This ring entitles you to a chance at the grand prize.
But until you've won five of these, I'm afraid the vault must remain closed.
Do try again.
I thought the clowns were supposed to make the customers happy.
Oh, I'm sorry.
Matilda, you're rattling our cover.
The treasure chest is the lure.
It stays.
No carny who's been in business more than an hour would ever dream of giving it away.
I'm just not at my sharpest in a beard.
- Miss Woolsey? - Herself.
Fresco Zapata.
Clairvoyant extraordinaire, at your service.
Perhaps you've heard of me.
Tarot, séances.
Believe me, Mr.
Zapata, your reputation precedes you.
I'll say.
Ah! My bearded beauty.
I'm told you are the mother of this delicate petal.
But I'm still a girl at heart.
When shall I have the pleasure of exploring your, um, future? Just as soon as I can get off the midway.
- Really? - You know, your presence is overpowering.
Yes, yes.
Well- - I await you at my establishment.
- Oh.
Miss Holt, you're not serious? He just two-timed me with my own daughter.
I'm serious, Matilda.
It's one way to get into his parlor.
- Somebody may have left a clue at that séance.
- Oh, boy.
- When duty calls.
- Sometimes I wish it would hit a wrong number.
- Love your flame, wonder buns.
- Thank you.
- How did we get so lucky? - Uh, didn't we work the circuit somewhere before? Oh, no.
I'd never forget that face.
Delilah's the name.
Excitement is the game.
I can believe it.
I've worked séances before.
Show me your layout.
Maybe I can work with you sometime.
- I shall bare my most treasured secrets.
- Oh.
I got news for you, Miss Woolsey.
I don't cotton to home wreckers.
And neither does Boris.
It was only a professional conference, Blossom Girl.
You and your bimbos.
Doesn't fidelity mean anything to you? You come near my husband again and Boris will reduce you to a size one.
Excuse me, but I do believe- the show must go on.
What are you trying to do? Pay me back for Turk? Woolsey.
Yes? Ah.
Nigel Woolsey.
- Yeah.
I just wanted to say thanks again for the rescue.
- Oh.
- Feeling all right? - I'm fine.
- Good.
- So, Nigel.
Christy tells me you and your sister are gonna be working the wire with me.
- Mm-hmm.
Looks that way.
- How'd you hear about the job? Well, we've been out of work for a while.
You know, you hear about these things.
Yeah, it's funny though.
Christy didn't exactly put it in the want ads.
Well, we've got a lot of friends.
You've got an accent.
Your sister doesn't.
I'm adopted.
Tell me something.
Is the job safe? I mean, after what happened to you this morning, we're, uh, a little nervous.
Well, accidents happen.
An accident? A cut pin? I understand, uh, my predecessor, someone named Turk- Is that right? He had an accident a few weeks back.
Look, if you're nervous, don't go up.
So, this guy Woolsey is he here because of what happened to Turk? Not as far as I know.
If you did know, would you tell me? Shh.
Where was Fresco during the séance? Standing right where Mr.
Steele is standing.
- Where was Guy? - Guy wasn't at the séance.
- What have you got? - Magnets.
! That's how Fresco does it.
My guess is an electromagnetic relay connected to the crystal ball through a magnet.
Well, Turk's name isn't even programmed on the dial.
Laura, when does a magnet lose its draw? - When there's a stronger magnet.
- The basement.
- Mildred? - Yes.
- Watch the board.
- Watch the board.
Watch the board.
Watch the board.
- You see a light anywhere? - Hmm? Aha.
The better mousetrap.
If Guy wasn't at the séance, he could have been the one down here rigging this.
Guy's an odd one.
I had a strange round of cat and mouse with him this evening.
But if he's the murderer what did he hope to gain by conjuring up Turk's name, eh? I- Oh, my God! Oh! I can't hold it! Laura! Mildred! Mildred.
! We're in trouble! Mildred! I can't hear you, Miss Holt.
But nothing's happened yet.
- Mildred! - Mildred! Mildred! - Mildred! - Mildred! I still can't hear you.
What are you doing down there? What? - Mildred! - Mildred! Mildred! Oh, Mildred! Oh.
The better mousetrap! - Ah.
Good thinking, Miss Holt.
Good thinking.
- Drowning always inspires me! - Help me.
- Oh, likewise, I hope.
" "S.
" "S.
"? Oh! Electromagnets! They're electric! We'll be fried! Parboiled! - Basted! - Laura! Oh, Laura! Oh.
Spare me the recipe.
Oh, my- Oh! Oh! Oh! If they tried to drown us, we must be onto something.
Onto what? Well, at the very least, we've asked someone too many questions.
Yeah, I wish they'd just answered "No comment.
" What have you got, Mildred? The word on Guy Nickerson.
He just finished four years in prison.
"Guy Nickerson, the High-wire Bandit.
"Apprehended while hanging by his feet from the prestigious Conover Museum in Fort Worth, Texas.
" - A Gutenberg Bible was missing.
- Fancy stealing.
Guy didn't have the Bible, and the police never found it.
You don't end up hanging by your feet from a museum ceiling without someone's help.
- An accomplice.
- A trapeze man.
A good bet.
Good bet he also got away with the Bible, leaving his partner- hanging.
What was the date of that robbery? - Christmas Eve, 1979.
- Does that ring sleigh bells? It happened the same night in the same town as Christy's accident.
- Circus freak.
- Mr.
Steele as a man of experience, what would you say a Gutenberg Bible might go for? One sold recently for around two million dollars.
That was a legitimate sale.
In this case, the vanishing accomplice would have to vanish for quite a while before he could turn the Bible over.
Meanwhile, Guy was an exemplary prisoner.
Four years in a maximum security prison without one infraction of the rules.
And also without revealing his accomplice.
Would you say he was racing with the clock? But probably to Turk's surprise, he beat it.
Four years of extraordinary patience.
Figuring ifhe got out fast enough, he could find said accomplice.
And get his hands on his share of the booty.
Guy Nickerson is a very determined man.
Possibly a lethal one.
- And we fly with him on the high trapeze.
- Mm-hmm.
Show business.
Who here was with the circus in Fort Worth? Max.
Fresco and Delilah.
Was Turk a catcher in the act? In those days, that was the big time.
Turk was a rigger.
He was just learning to catch.
He may have learned more than he let on.
Oh, this is beautiful.
It's the one I wore that night.
I'm not superstitious.
May I? Did you know Guy Nickerson in those days? Only by reputation.
He was a comer.
But I only met him a few weeks ago.
Did you know he had a prison record when you hired him? Everyone's got a past on this circuit.
I don't think there's any connection between this theft you're talking about and my accident.
Everyone was working their stations that night.
How can you be so sure? The accident had to traumatize you.
Can you even remember what you were doing the week before? No.
I guess I'm just telling you what people told me.
People who may have had a vested interest in lying to you.
Whoever was at their stations that night and whoever wasn't, is still a mystery to us, isn't it? Had I known you were gonna drop by I would have slipped into something a little more flattering.
Actually, I came by for a chat.
I like a man that has more than one dimension.
Besides, my ball and chain might be back any minute.
Tell me, Delilah.
Have you known Christy a long time? - Sure.
- Ah.
Consider me Old Faithful, honey.
Were you and Fresco there the night she took her fall? Yeah.
Why? Just curious.
Um, anything funny happen that night? Like what? Is this a game? No game.
You just hear these things on the circuit.
Forget it, wonder buns.
You think 'cause you got a great profile and a flat stomach, I'm gonna spill my guts out to you? That wasn't quite what I had in mind.
Consider the coffee takeout.
Don't fret, cupcake.
I don't know what you heard on the circuit, Woolsey, but, uh - Delilah's trying to protect me.
- Oh.
You see, we care about each other very much.
I suppose that seems like a joke to someone as young and vital as yourself.
Love is never a joke, Fresco.
- Was I, uh-Was I prying about Christmas Eve? - Yeah.
I flew with Christy.
I was her catcher.
And her teacher.
When she fell, my nerve fell with her.
Hadn't been for Delilah- her loyalty, her indulgence- I'd be on the bum somewhere.
Live while you can, Woolsey.
Luck runs out fast.
This net post doesn't look too good.
I'm gonna get another one.
I'm beginning to be suspicious of everyone around here.
Any one of them could have been Guy's accomplice.
Fresco was a catcher.
Turk was learning to catch.
And who knows what Max was learning.
Well, Christy fell because her rigging was faulty.
Any one of them could have been responsible for that.
Whoever the accomplice was, when he got back to the circus that night, he was way off his game knowing that he'd left Guy hanging from that museum ceiling.
So far off his game that he never checked the rigging, so Christy fell.
- Uh-huh.
- IfTurk was the accomplice, why is Guy still hanging around? - He must have the Bible.
- Well, if he does, he's killed for it.
He may be hanging around to avoid suspicion.
By staging that business on the Ferris wheel? Ah, Nickerson.
A true star.
Late for rehearsal.
You're good with the words, Woolsey.
I hope you're as good up there.
- Oh! - Careful.
- Nice.
We'll do fine together.
- Thanks.
I hope.
- Now just relax.
- Okay? - Okay.
- All right.
Laura, look out! Laura.
Laura, you all right? You okay? Breathe.
How the devil did that happen? I don't know.
I guess you had a good reason to be nervous.
You're okay.
- That's it.
- Yeah.
You okay? - Yeah.
- Okay.
All right.
Just relax.
I'm fine.
I'm fine.
I just need some air.
Well, nevertheless, before we go back in there - I wish you'd rest those lovely bones of yours.
- Oh.
I have a showdown with our rigger.
- Mr.
- Mm-hmm? - We don't have the same murderer anymore.
- Guy? - Yeah.
- Because he was on the ladder with you? - Yeah.
- Well, maybe.
Or maybe he's just keeping us guessing.
- Let me go find Max, okay? I'll be back.
- All right.
You okay? Yes.
You sure? I checked that equipment out this morning.
Everything was as it should be.
Do you believe me? If that's what you're telling me.
Why did you run away when it happened? With all the things that's been going on around here, I figured I'd get the blame.
If that were your real reason, I think you'd stay to defend yourself.
Does it bother you to see a woman take a fall? - Sure.
- A lot, I think.
Christmas Eve, Max.
What happened? If I'd known what I was doing that night Christy would still be flying.
I was 19.
Turk got me a job with the circus.
Cleaning up, setting up tents.
Every now and then, he'd- he'd let me help him rig the nets.
And that night? Christmas Eve? Turk was late.
He called and told me to start setting up.
You rigged the performance alone? Go on, Max.
You're with friends.
Easy, easy.
It's okay.
It's okay.
You're with friends.
Go on.
By the time Turk got there, the show had already started.
I asked him to check things over.
He said he would, but- He didn't.
I don't know.
His head was in someplace else that night.
Afterwards, Turk said he'd cover for me.
As long as I kept my mouth shut.
- And you've obliged ever since.
- What else could I do? Max, a few weeks ago, when Guy Nickerson joined up here did he have much to do with Turk? Guy was only here one or two days before Turk's accident.
I saw them together a couple of times.
They weren't yelling or anything but I could tell something was going down between 'em.
Lovely fellow, Turk.
Lets a 19-year-old kid take an extended guilt trip.
Leaves his partner hanging like Peking duck for the police to devour.
- Am I boring you? - This case that never made sense still doesn't.
- Progress.
- IfTurk was the accomplice and he was trying to get away from Guy why did he go by water? What kind of market is there for wet Bibles? - Pious mermaids? - Why wasn't Turk's body washed ashore? The dinghy was.
Are you thinking what I'm thinking, Miss Holt? - I think I am, Mr.
- We have a brand-new suspect.
- Indeed we do.
- No matter what.
Free-falling pulley blocks- - Ransacked offices.
- Ouija boards with minds of their own.
Tonight- - The show- - Must go on.
Ladies and gentlemen may I direct your attention high above the center ring to the aerialists of the flying trapeze.
! Woolsey, Woolsey and Nickerson! Ready? Now watch our daring aerialists as they attempt the over-and-under passing leap whereby two fliers pass each other in midair.
Watch them! It's our turn, Miss Woolsey.
- How do you feel? - I could get addicted.
Ladies and gentlemen now watch as Miss Woolsey will perform a splits across and half turn to the bar.
! Silence, please.
- Ready? - Yeah.
So far so good.
I hope we're not going through all this for nothing.
Our man's gotta be getting desperate.
Ooh! It's Turk.
- He's alive.
- Oh, my God.
There he goes.
Ah? You staged your own death, but you were serious about ours.
Am I right, Turk, old man? Come on.
Speak to me.
I can't hear you.
Speak to me.
I suspect I can also thank you for a crack on the skull.
- Huh? - And an electric evening in Fresco's basement! Don't be a fool, Guy.
You'll never get off the midway.
Why spend more time in maximum security? It's the lure you're after.
You should know better than that.
Come on, Guy.
I do.
Nobody wins the lure.
Guy never believed Turk was dead.
He believed somebody at the circus was working with Turk.
He knew all the regulars worked as shills so he rigged the séance to see how they'd react.
I mean, any experienced carny knows how to rig a séance.
Huh! Or an experienced con artist.
I'll take that as a compliment.
Up you get.
Enjoying Christy's gift? - Hmm? - You know me and circuses.
I just want to remind you I'll be gone for a couple of hours, okay? - Oh.
Have a nice lunch.
- Lunch? No.
- Friend of mine's told me about this new palm reader.
- Mildred! Well, you never can tell.
There may be romance in my future yet.
- She's right.
Perhaps we should give it a try.
Come on.
- Come on.
- Mr.
- Yes? We'll settle that question between the two of us.
Won't we?