was a hit from the beginning of its televised run, from the fall of 1965 through the spring of 1971. This videocassette, volume 2 of a three-volume collection, comprises two uncut color episodes from the first season that focus on Sergeant "I see nussink!" Schultz: "The Great Impersonation" and "It Takes a Thief... Sometimes." With good transfers and no commercial interruptions, these shows make for some charming, nostalgic, laugh-track-filled family viewing.
In "The Great Impersonation," Schultz (John Banner) must pose as Kommandant Klink (Werner Klemperer) in order to travel to Stalag 4, where Carter (Larry Hovis), LeBeau (Robert Clary), and Newkirk (Richard Dawson)--going by the unlikely monikers Cavelli, McPherson, and Hilgenbecker, respectively--are being interrogated by the Gestapo after their capture outside Stalag 13. They'd just blown up a train and gotten separated from Kinch (Ivan Dixon), who brought the bad news back to Colonel Hogan (Bob Crane). Fearful that the three heroes will rat on him, the portly sergeant of the guard agrees to rehearse--delivering a sidesplitting caricature of the unintelligible German martinet--and travel to the other camp in order to demand the release of "his" prisoners. His performance is unpersuasive, however, and as he continues to throw back shots of schnapps, Kinch must call Stalag 4's Kommandant, pretending to be "General Kinchmeyer," and secure their release himself.
"It Takes a Thief... Sometimes" finds the seldom-fooled Hogan foiling the plans of a Gestapo operative named Captain Heinrich (played by Michael Constantine of Room 222 fame) to infiltrate and expose an undercover sabotage team. Schultz ("In war I do not want to take sides") gives away the team's existence during a poker game, and the ensuing conflict pits Hogan's wits against Heinrich's. Heinrich, along with Hogan's French Underground love interest, Michelle, and a couple very blond collaborators, is fooled into believing he's helping blow up Stalag 13, but instead helps destroy a railroad tunnel and meets a very sticky end. --Robert Burns Neveldine