The Highwayman

Season 1 Episode 7


Aired Friday 8:00 PM Apr 22, 1988 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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out of 10
4 votes
  • A mobster who is determined to stop a man testifying against him in a few hours, uses a machine that can read thoughts to try and find the man's location. But when the first subject dies, his men capture Ms. Winthrop instead. Not the best, not the worst..

    "Frightmare" is a fair episode of the short-lived 'Highwayman' series, but one that relies on the viewer having seen most of the other episodes to fully get the gist.

    The images from Ms. Winthrop (and later, Jetto)'s mind that appear on the thought-reading machine, are all adapted from previous episodes, notably "Road Lord" and "Billionaire Body Club" (other episodes, such as "Till Death Duel Us Part", are also touched upon). Although the episode is still watchable without this prior knowledge, one really needs to be familiar with these prior instalments to fully get "where the episode is coming from".

    This was the last episode to be produced for the series before it was cancelled, and as such, with it's re-working of scenes from previous episodes, somewhat bookends the series. Some episode guides state this to have aired after the next broadcast episode, "Warzone", but this seems to be incorrect, as on the two off-air US recordings I have of "Frightmare", it has a trailer for "Warzone" at the end. Either way, "Haunted Highway", which had been postponed previously, ended up being the final first run episode.
    It is also interesting to note that this, the final produced episode, was broadcast next in line, after the first regular episode, "Billionaire Body Club".

    As with "Billionaire Body Club", this episode features a lot more from D.C. (Tim Russ) than usual. It is also the most interior-contained of the episodes, being set nearly entirely indoors, and with the Highwayman's truck being featured very little. (Jetto's truck does not appear).

    The story is fair, but probably not one of the best from the show's short run. It is an interesting premise (years before 'Inception'!), though a little stretched out in places. It is one of those episodes that is probably best just to watch once in a while, unlike some of the other entries ("Summer of 45", etc.), that I seem to be able to watch endlessly.

    As covered on some of my previous reviews for the series, my father recorded all of the hour-long episodes, but kept very few of them (not realising that the series would never be repeated in the U.K.); If memory serves me correctly, this was the last episode, bar "The Hitchhiker" which for some reason turned up about a year later, to be shown in my local ITV region, London Weekend Television (in those days, nearly all imported shows were shown jumbled up out of sequence). It was one of the episodes that survived being recorded over, though I didn't watch it as much as the other couple that had escaped such fate.

    All-in-all, this is a fair episode, certainly not a weak entry, but at the same time not one of my outstanding favourites of the series. I give "Frightmare" an 8.5.
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