Pole Position

The Trouble with Kuma

Season 1, Ep 13, Aired 12/8/84
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  • Episode Description
  • The kids are on their way to Hawaii on Uncle Zachary's boat when he calls them with an emergency rescue mission. Dr. Mark Lungo, a genetic engineer living on a nearby island, is unaware of an approaching tidal wave. Uncle Zach gives the team a recognition code as proof that he sent them, but on the way to the island Wheels hits a mine and the code is erased. Dan and Wheels try to warn Lungo he's in danger, while Tess and Daisy are tricked by Lungo's assistants, who are attempting to steal his research. When Lungo sees Kuma, who's been acting even weirder than usual since the mission started, he finally believes them, revealing that he's the one who created the Pole Position mascot. With the misunderstanding cleared up, Dan and Tess manage to get Lungo's papers back, capture the traitorous assistants, and barely outclimb the tidal wave when it hits.moreless

  • Cast & Crew
  • David Coburn

    Dan Darrett

  • Kaleena Kiff

    Daisy Darrett

  • Jack Angel

    Dr. Zachary Darrett ("Uncle Zach")

  • Lisa Lindgren

    Tess Darrett

  • Marilyn Schreffler


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  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (8)

    • (The ceiling is about to crush them:) WHEELS: Oh no! I'm gonna be a compact! DAN: I'm all for family togetherness, but this is goin' too far! TESS: Be serious! DAN: I AM!

    • (Dan and Roadie find the way inside the ruins:) DAN: I knew that would work! WHEELS: Oh yeah? How? DAN: Well somethin' had to go right.

    • "*Whew!* Good thing I filled up on supreme!" --Roadie, after a narrow escape.

    • LUNGO: STOP! DAN: You heard the man, Roadie: Floor it!

    • "You're not gonna believe this... It's really funny, see, I was driving my car on the ocean when I suddenly hit a mine..." --Dan, explaining to Lungo what happened to Zach's recognition code.

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    Notes (6)

    • At the end of 1984, when this episode aired, the U.S. video game market was in the middle of a tremendous crash. As a result, game-based shows were no longer a profitable trend, and Pole Position (along with other shows like Pac-Man and Saturday Supercade) was cancelled. CBS continued to air the original 13 episodes until fall of 1985, but no more new shows were produced.

    • This episode was released as a single-episode tape by Karl-Lorimar / Kideo Video.

    • The team's dual-trailer truck does not appear in this episode.

    • This episode confirms that Kuma is an amalgam of several different kinds of animal, but Dr. Lungo does not say specifically which ones.

    • This is the second episode in which a research professor is betrayed by his assistants. (#3, "The Chicken Who Knew Too Much", was the first.)

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    Trivia (15)

    • How did Uncle Zach's boat survive the wave? The kids left it offshore, but they are on it with Lungo in the final scene.

    • Technically the wave should have been referred to as a tsunami rather than a tidal wave, since it was triggered by an earthquake and not tidal forces.

    • When Roadie says "Yes!" in response to Tess' comment that they can outclimb the wave, he says it in Wheels' voice.

    • Lots of mess-ups in the scene where Wheels cuts a circle out of the stone, enlarging the hole to rescue Tess: The stone falls into the hole but hangs for a few frames. When Wheels tosses the net, the circle is back. And wouldn't the stone have fallen on Tess and the barracuda, directly below?

    • At the foot of the cliff, Wheels' back seat appears empty when Lungo's assistants should be sitting there.

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