Blue Heelers

Season 3 Episode 17

Fight Dirty

0
Aired Wednesday 8:30 PM May 21, 1996 on Seven Network
7.5
out of 10
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1 votes
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Episode Summary

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Fight Dirty
AIRED:
Maggie is set to prosecute the Dean Crocker case but PJ has doubts about the investigation and about the accuracy of Jack's evidence.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Jack is sidelined with Adam to investigate a series of farming water pump thefts, while Maggie prepares to prosecute in the Dean Crocker case. But PJ has doubts about the investigation and Jack's role. A rather "mish-mash" ep that could've been better...moreless

    7.5
    This review contains spoilers.



    'Fight Dirty' brings to an end the brief Jack Woodley story arc that began a few episodes again in episode 100, 'Fair Crack of the Whip' (Part 2). Although I like the concept of the Jack Woodley storyline, and Frankie J. Holden plays the character very well, sadly the actual episodes featured during the thread feel to be noticeably below par for the era in the series.



    The bulk of the story follows on from the threads began in 'Fair Crack' (particularly in Part 2), both regarding the burglary and violent attack on elderly Police widow Edith Flemming, but more primarily regarding a valuable silver photo frame that P.J. suspects that Jack deliberately took from the crime scene to ensure conviction.



    At this stage, the series has delved more into a series of on-going stories over the more "open and shut" cases seen in other periods, a pattern it would dip in and out of over the course of the show's run. Whilst I don't mind this in the least, feeling that it gives the series a bit more depth, at the same time, when it follows on many of the threads from such a dull, dud story as 'Fair Crack…' in the first place, much more wished the whole thing would hurry up and get over with.



    The b-plot, of Jack investigating with Adam a series of water pump thefts from local farmers, seems to be very half-hearted and tagged on, almost as if the writers merely conjured it up to give Jack something to do and out of the way whilst the main proceedings of the episode (and the confidential investigations into his conduct) take place. In one respect, it does show what an able lawman Jack can be, but sadly, this whole b-plot, complete with its rather rushed and not overly clear conclusion, just feels so limp.



    With this, and the several other angles regarding the main plot (Maggie preparing to prosecute in the case, while P.J. looks into the whole matter regarding the picture frame and Jack's conduct history) make the overall episode feel somewhat of a "mish mash"; Whilst I've nothing against multi-stranded stories (and in many cases support them), this attempt just felt too unfocused and scattershot in structure to really work.



    Although (as I've mentioned in some previous reviews) the third season of 'Blue Heelers' is considered by some to be the "golden era", the whole string of episodes stretching back to the disappointing 'Fair Crack of the Whip' two-parter marks a noticeably off-form spell for the series. I just wish Jack, a character with definite mileage, had been given a stronger sequence of stories to feature in. Not to mention, in this episode, we get Tom acting incredibly uptight (even before he becomes fully alerted to P.J.'s concerns regarding Jack) that was never really delved into, unless it is to be picked up in forthcoming episodes(s), and other minor factors, such as Maggie, to be honest, acting a bit of a stuck up b*tch at times, quite off-character.



    I had this episode marked down in the 6s or lower 7s at best; it is the final few minutes, with Jack finally being removed from service at Mount Thomas, that raise it up to my final rating of an 7.5. These final few minutes work very well, and are the only thing that raises my rating up to such a generous score, as the rest of the episode sadly didn't do much for me at all.moreless
Martin Sacks

Martin Sacks

Senior Detective Patrick Joseph "PJ" Hasham

John Wood

John Wood

Senior Sergeant Tom Croydon

Julie Nihill

Julie Nihill

Christine "Chris" Reilly

Lisa McCune

Lisa McCune

Senior Constable Margaret "Maggie" Doyle

Damian Walshe-Howling

Damian Walshe-Howling

Constable Adam Cooper

William McInnes

William McInnes

Sergeant Nick Schultz

Jason Clarke

Jason Clarke

Dean Crocker

Guest Star

Carolyn Bock

Carolyn Bock

Judy Stewart

Guest Star

Margaret Ricketts

Margaret Ricketts

Edith Fleming

Guest Star

Frankie J. Holden

Frankie J. Holden

Snr Det Sgt Jack Woodley

Recurring Role

Peta Doodson

Peta Doodson

Snr Sgt. Monica Draper

Recurring Role

Fred Barker

Fred Barker

Frank Wade

Recurring Role

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