Season 4 Episode 10

Fraternity of Thieves

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Feb 13, 1989 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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out of 10
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  • One of the series' last Cold War-era political thrillers featuring some good acting and character growth for Pete.

    After some rather unorthodox outings (Deadly Dreams, Cleo Rocks) in recent weeks, it was nice to bring things back to Earth with a good old-fashioned spy thriller. And even though there was a different actor playing the role of Michael Thornton, it was nice to see a follow-up to the strained relationship between Pete and his son, which played out tragically here as Michael gets entangled in a scheme to sell government secrets to the enemy. The acting, particularly by Dana Elcar, was a strong point throughout this episode as Pete went through all the motions of a father disappointed in his own choices as he watches his child make even worse choices. The murky espionage theme also worked in this episode, with assassins carrying cartridges full of cyanide and secret microfilm being passed on the wings of butterflies.

    The downside of this episode, other than the fact that it followed my all-time favorite episode "Cleo Rocks" and thus had to live up to impossibly high expecatations, was the common theme in action shows where the villain is such an insufferable cutthroat that he manages to kill off all of his associates, yet the next guy up the ladder fails to realize his number will soon be up as well. Beyond that, the epilogue got a little sappy when Pete pontificated how Michael's ethical failures were "everyone's responsibility". Minor complaints, however, for a strong episode.