I Spy

Season 1 Episode 3

Carry Me Back to Old Tsing Tao

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Sep 29, 1965 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
19 votes

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Episode Summary

Carry Me Back to Old Tsing Tao

A smuggler in Hong Kong offers the U.S. government $1 million in back taxes so he can get a visa to his homeland. Kelly and Scott are assigned to pick up the payment, only to discover that the smuggler's three sons-in-law will stop at nothing to get it.


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  • An old man wants to return to Formosa(now called Taiwan), but must pay the U.S. government backtaxes for his visa.

    One of the flat-out funny episodes, but also one of the more clever ones.

    Philip Ahn as Papa Charley Huan gives a layered performance, not just the usual stereotypical wily Asian elder. The scene with Catherine in the dark shack gets me almost every time I rewatch the episode.

    The murderous sons-in-law are sorta cartoonish in their simplicity, but the cool thing is that both sides- Kelly and Scott as well as the in-laws- end up taking defeats, even though the in-laws take worse defeats!

    The easy friendship between Bill Cosby and Robert Culp is so evident in this episode, that their patter makes the episode. (In fact, any episode with prolonged Scott/Kelly scenes are some of my favorites because they could pull off smart and funny pretty consistently.)

    Pilar Seuralt, quite the lovely lady, totally sells Catherine as protector, no only of her father, but of the family. The way Catherine takes on her in-laws, not only physically but verbally outplays the men, is inspiring in a female character from the television at the time.

    It's a highly recommended episode!moreless

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Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (9)

    • Kelly: Why can't you do it?
      Mariner: Because I'm not one of you glamor boys. My cover's being a coalie for a lousy Dutch freighter. Two years and I haven't had an assignment yet where I can wear a clean, white, shirt. Unlike you cute glamor boys.
      Kelly: My hotel bill is $40 a day. How about that?
      Mariner: And you get to play with all that local talent.
      Kelly: Well, it's a struggle.

    • Charlie: I am exceedingly loved, which is good. And exceedingly rich, which is better.

    • Scotty: (considering stealing the gold) No, we'd just lose our pension benefits.
      Kelly: Think we'd lose our jobs?
      Scotty: Yeah.
      Kelly: Such wonderful jobs, too.
      Scotty: And the hospitalization is free.
      Kelly: All those marvelous orthopedic devices.
      Scotty: I just love plaster of Paris.
      Kelly: Right.

    • Scott: Hey now.
      Kelly: What?
      Scott: What's this?
      Kelly: What's what?
      Scott: A scar shaped like a crescent.
      Kelly: Oh, that one.
      Scott: How'd you get it?
      Kelly: Stalking the elusive quarry.
      Scott: Beautiful. Where?
      Kelly: Well, it was in Old Tunis. There were four of us on three camels. We all knew that one of us was a spy.
      Scott: Uh-huh.
      Kelly: Well, we stopped at an oasis. None of us trusting the other. Each on guard. Each suspect. Very suspicious.
      Scott: Yeah.
      Kelly: Well, you got to get the picture. Desert, hot wind, oasis, full moon. Lonesome dog calling somewhere in the distance.
      Scott: Then what happened?
      Kelly: Well, the lonesome dog bit me.
      Scott: I beg your pardon?
      Kelly: Dumb dog ran right into my blankets and bit me!
      Scott: Well, who was the spy?
      Kelly: I've given you plenty of clues, so figure out who the spy was. Me! Two of the others were rug peddlers and the other one was looking for his camel.

    • Scott: Now, can the the Rover Boys be far behind?
      Kelly: Say, you think maybe you have a point there. They were not in front. I wonder perhaps they might be in the alley.
      Scott: They are the type.
      Kelly: I'll tell you what--I'm a little bitter about all this. What about yourself?
      Scott: Yes I am.
      Kelly: What kind of shape are you in?
      Scott: I'm in great shape.
      Kelly: Good!
      Scott: And this time there's no element of surprise, no car crashes, and it's only three to two.
      Kelly: We owe it to ourselves.
      Scott: Yes we do. Pride!

    • Catherine: (sweeping into the room) Turkey! (slaps his face)
      Turkey: Why do you do that, Catherine?
      Scott: (holding his sore middle) Yeah, hit him again, lady.
      Catherine: Yes, he deserves it. (slaps Turkey again)

    • Harold: Terribly sorry, old boy. What exactly did you want with Papa Charley?
      Kelly: (with a gun in his face) Well, it was nothing; it was silly. I had a shark's fin and I wanted to make some soup. He's got a recipe...

    • Scott: I just wonder where he's got all that money.
      Kelly: Half a million in each shoe.
      Scott: One of the tallest people you'll ever see.

    • Morton: (reading the birthday cake) Papa Charley Huan, with love from his daughters-Sally, Irene, Mary, and Catherine- and his dutiful sons-in-law, Turkey, Harold, and Morton. (The women giggle.)
      Charley: You read Chinese very well, Morton. (The women giggle harder.)
      Morton: What's the matter?
      Charley: The inscription reads: 'To the Honorable Shin Fong on the occasion of the opening of his new tailoring establishment, with the Best Wishes of the Hong Kong Merchant's Association.'

  • NOTES (0)