The Untouchables

Season 2 Episode 7

The Purple Gang

Aired Thursday 9:30 PM Dec 01, 1960 on ABC
out of 10
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Episode Summary

The Purple Gang

Ness is hit with a new racket by the Purple Gang: they kidnap other thugs and hold them for ransom. Since mobsters won't go to the police for help, they pay...and it's paying off big-time.

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    It was the television event of the 1960-61 season. Frank Nitti returned from the grave in this episode and he brought along some rather nasty friends with him. One of these friends, Purple Gang leader Eddie Fletcher, managed to outnasty him in this episode.

    There's so much that's good about this episode it's tough to list them all. You have one of the greatest scenes in television history where Nitti and his boys enter a darkened warehouse for a rendezvous with the Purple Gang. Then you have the disturbing and shocking murder of the Torneks. Plus there's a great Nitti/Ness confrontation and an explosive action climax. After spinning it's wheels in mediocrity for a brief period Season Two kicked into high gear with The Purple Gang. If you don't like this one you can go watch Full House or Me and the Chimp. You simply don't appreciate quality television.

    Special attention must be given to the appearance of Carl Milletaire as Nitti henchman, Nick Tomassi. Milletaire would appear in three more episodes but his character would be called Pete Konitz in subsequent appearances. This was because the producers gave into various Italian pressure groups and struck a deal with them. The only villains with Italian names who would appear on the show were real life gangsters such as Al Capone, Frank Nitti, and the like. All fictional gangsters would have non-Italian surnames. Thus Nick Tomassi became Pete Konitz and a legend was born.moreless
Werner Klemperer

Werner Klemperer

Jan Tornek

Guest Star

Ilka Windish

Ilka Windish

Mrs. Tornek

Guest Star

Steven Geray

Steven Geray

Eric Vajda

Guest Star

Bruce Gordon

Bruce Gordon

Frank Nitti

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (11)

    • Garver: Ness! What this-a Federal rap? I tell ya, I was framed. I had nothing to do with it.

    • Nitti: (grabs Fletcher) I oughta cut your heart out.

      Machen: (points chopper at Nitti) Easy does it, Mr. Nitti.

      Nitti: You get him as well as me, punk.

      Machen: Machine Gun Machen, Mr. Nitti. Care to try how I got my name?

      Fletcher: Sit down, Frank.

    • Ness: Who killed Jan Tornek?
      Wiles: Buffalo Bill.
      Hobson: Who shot Mrs. Tornek?
      Wiles: Florence Nightingale.

    • Nitti: You got no right to touch that dough.
      Ness: Sue me.
      Nitti: Why you...
      Ness: I'd like nothing better than an excuse to muss you up. Your business here is finished. We'll give you an escort to the city limit.

    • Ness: (to Hobson about Vajda) Breaks the laws of a country that gave him a home. Peddles a product that destroys thousands of lives and looks like a nice old man who ought to be telling fairy stories to children. You figure it out, Lee.

    • Loman: (about hostage Tomassi) If we kill this character, they'll kill DeLong.

      Fletcher:Who cares?

    • Nitti: (to Tomassi) You talk. If I do any talkin' I might kill him.

    • Fletcher: I gotta have a guarantee. Hate to have you show up at a rendezvous with a couple dozen choppers--messy way to do business.
      Nitti: Now you think I'm walkin' in this warehouse with 250 grand without protection?

    • Fletcher: You're lookin' at it the wrong way, Frankie. I rubbed out Tornek and snatched Vajda right out from under Ness' nose, just to protect your investment. That was a big risk for me to take, gotta be worth somethin'.
      Nitti: Somethin' maybe, but not 250 G's, uhh?

    • Fletcher: I don't want no war, with you or nobody else. I got my own setup, just invited you guys over here to do you a favor.
      Nitti: Some favor, uhh?... at a price tag of a quarter of a million.

    • Fletcher: I could burn you and your boys right here, right now, where you are and take over your whole organization.
      Nitti: What's this punk think, he's Napoleon?

  • NOTES (1)

    • Carl Milletaire's character is called Nick Tomassi in this episode. In three subsequent appearances on the show the character would be called Pete Konitz. The reason for the name change is that the show made a deal with Italian-American protest groups to only use Italian surnames for gangsters on the show if they were real life gangsters like Al Capone, Frank Nitti, or the Genna brothers.