29. So Coldly Sweet
Kelly and Scotty are ordered to determine the authenticity of a lovely Soviet agent who claims she wants to defect.
[Location: Palm Springs, USA]
French title: Froidement votre
German title: Blond, kalt und suss
Italian title: Cosi freddamente dolce
Diana Hyland (Marisa Terezcu), Michael Conrad (Dinat), Charles Korvin (General Sorin), Craig Shreeve (Bennett), Larry Thor (Masters)
14 September 1966
Currently available on DVD
The second season opens with a rock-solid espionage tale. Set in Palm Springs (and benefiting from plenty of outdoor, on-location shots), this episode finds Kelly and Scotty babysitting Soviet agent Marisa, who says she wants to defect. The guys are gradually convinced that she's genuine, but it turns out that she isn't; in fact, she's the pawn -- at first the willing pawn -- of Soviet spymaster General Sorin, who is using her bogus defection to feed false information to the Americans. Sorin is aided by the brawny killer Dinat (played by Michael Conrad, who had previously appeared in "Carry Me Back to Old Tsing-Tao".) His plans begin to unravel, though, as Bennett, a colleague of Kelly and Scotty, is murdered. When she realizes that Sorin is willing to sacrifice her to convince the Americans that she is really a defector, Marisa decides to switch sides for real. But first, she and Kelly and Scotty must survive a deadly chase across the desert.
One can't help but notice the difference a year can make for Bill Cosby, who has come a very long way since his stumbling debut in "So Long, Patrick Henry." And Robert Culp gives us a new insight or two into the character of Kelly Robinson; we've come to expect Kelly to become emotionally involved with a pretty woman, but he's also a pro who can be ruthless at times -- he's quite prepared to put a bullet in Marisa's brain if she won't discard her misplaced allegiance to Sorin. Perhaps the only flaw is Dinat's apparent inability to hit the broad side of a barn with his sniper rifle. The exciting conclusion -- the desert chase scene -- is first-rate, and Diana Hyland turns in a fine performance as the pretty Russian agent at the center of the storm.