The Pretender Episode Guide
A trip down memory lane.
Episode Guide | Meltdown
This was another germ that had been kicking the writing staff awhile; the notion of an entire episode turning out to be a takedown totally designed by Jarod. This then became the germ to concoct a unique, very play-like episode that would also allow us a chance to play with the form. Uh-oh!
We say “uh-oh” because anytime you play with the form you set the table for potential disaster, since you’re walking the tightrope without a net. But in a fourth season (and always), we especially welcomed the challenge to tackle something different. And it turned out to be a great experience.
Understand, on the surface we were filming six actors in one room almost the whole episode. Sound easy? Think again. To do this, the entire script had to practically be choreographed in chunks so that, again, like a play, each actor could know where they had to be on that ‘stage’ and when. (Not to mention ‘trapping’ your large crew in the same small quarters for almost a full week…)
Story-wise this one has a lot of nice nuances, a touching ending, a great surprise ending, when, after Jarod has gotten the confession he’s going for, the curtain literally goes up revealing everything that had happened was by Jarod’s design, right down to making his fellow thieves believe they were dying and had only an hour to live.
Barbara Babcock, who we introduced as Edna Raines in this episode, was the lead in a short-lived (but a heckuva lot of fun) series that was an apprenticeship of sorts for us, called “The Law and Harry McGraw”