The Rat Patrol

Season 1 Episode 7

The Blind Man's Bluff Raid

Aired Monday 8:30 PM Oct 24, 1966 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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  • The Blind Man's Bluff Raid

    The 7th episode of The Rat Patrol begins with Sgt. Troy walking ahead of the jeeps, destroying mines by firing bursts from his submachinegun into the sand. I'm not convinced that this is a practical way to navigate through a minefield; the mines under the sand are pressure-activated devices, and just firing a few random bursts aren't going to set them all off (probably not even a single one unless a lucky shot hit it dead-on, which is unlikely considering the angle Troy is firing from!) But the other Rats are humoring Troy and driving along behind him.

    Soon enough, we hear the circus music that heralds Hauptmann Dietrich's arrival. For once, the Rats

    do the smart thing and scatter away, instead of engaging in the usual jeep-vs-tank battle (probably because Troy is too far away to give the order to attack!) Troy is left behind to face the oncoming panzer column but is helped by a few bursts from the fleeing jeeps.

    At this point, I can't really explain what happens. Troy is alone and wandering in the desert, and the German tanks are nowhere to be seen--maybe they were afraid to enter the minefield and didn't know to just shoot machineguns into the sand to clear a path like Troy did. And the other Rats and their jeeps are off somewhere else, wondering where Troy could be. Moffitt scans the horizon and decides to move on to the rendezvous point. It took me about 2 seconds to figure out that everyone could follow their own tracks in the sand to link back up very quickly--maybe Moffitt knows this too, but he's giving Troy some payback for the events in "The Kill or be Killed Raid" is what I will assume.

    Troy is quickly in bad shape, stumbling around in the desert without water. For some reason, he is compelled to keep staring at the sun, until he finally collapses into the handy shade of the cameraman.

    Troy wakes up in an aid station. Troy is blind and doesn't realize that he has been captured by Dietrich--the nurse and doctor speak perfect english, and Dietrich's plan is for Troy to reveal the location of the Rat's rendezvous point (it's like something borrowed from a "Mission Impossible" episode!). Eyedrops are administered to Troy that continue his blindness (those nasty Nazis had a LOT of secret weapons!) until the info can be snookered out of him. There's some excellent dialogue between Dietrich and the doctor (who disagrees with Dietrich's methods) that makes the episode a memorable one.

    Meanwhile, the other Rats are debating what to do. Tully give a stream-of-conscious ramble about his

    "big mammy" and a butterfly. Everyone seems quite concerned about Troy except for Moffitt (and perhaps some unspoken hatred between the two is becoming .

    Troy is getting cozy with the German nurse, wandering hands and all. Troy must have his mind on that, because he is soon cajoled into showing where the Rats' rendezvous point is located. Dietrich reveals the truth to Troy, who is a bit angry that he has been fooled, and especially resentful of the nurse.

    Dietrich arranges to have Troy taken to a POW camp, giving him a pair of sunglasses, and then the Hauptmann leaves to go "clean out a Rat's

    Somehow, Troy has figured out that the eyedrops are continuing his vision problem, so he fills the dropper with water while giving the nurse a torrid kiss. Then the nurse, doc, and guards load him into an ambulance and they're on their way to the POW camp.

    Troy's eyes are slowly getting better, so after a smoke and passing a bottle of booze around, Troy springs into action, killing the doc, guard, driver and motorcycle escort. "Another time, another place," he says to the teary-eyed nurse as he speeds away on the motorcycle.

    Troy arrives at the rendezvous point just ahead of Dietrich's armor column, and the Rats get away, leaving Dietrich to find just the cycle and the sunglasses. Troy and Moffitt watch Dietrich's disappointment from a nearby dune, and Troy talks to Moffitt using the same patronizing words that the doctor had used when fooling him--perhaps just a hint that Troy is playing Moffitt in the same way as well?

    Though not a great story, the episode is very well written and acted. Oddly, the usual technical excellence is brought down by a shadow of the cameraman and camera (AGAIN!) in the scene where Troy collapses in the sand. But this episode is worth watching just for the fine dialogues and

    character interactions.

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