Lois' Daily Planet

The Pretender

SHORT SYNOPSIS FOR
TOY SURPRISE
which aired on Saturday, March 7, 1998

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The Pretender was created by Steven Long Mitchell & Craig W. Van Sickle

The series stars:
Michael T. Weiss as Jarod
Andrea Parker as Miss Parker
Patrick Bauchau as Sydney
Jon Gries as Broots
with Jamie Denton as Mr. Lyle

The Pretender also stars (although not necessarily in every episode):   Sam Ayres (Sam the Sweeper),  Paul Dillon (Angelo),  Willie Gault (Willie the Sweeper), Pamela Gidley (Brigitte), Richard Marcus (Mr. Raines), Ryan Merriman (Young Jarod), Kim Meyers (Jarod's Mother), Jonathan Osser (Younger Jarod), Ashley Peldon (Young Miss Parker) Harve Presnell (Mr. Parker), and Alex Wexo (Young Sydney). 

This is EPISODE #34   Written By: Juan Carlos Coto and
Directed By: Fred K. Keller


The Pretend:  Children's Counselor

Chris Conti and his best friend, Nick, were in a car accident.  Chris managed to get free, but Nick remained pinned inside the burning car, and died.  Chris has a first-class case of survivor's guilt - blaming himself for being unable to save Nick's life, as well as for being the one who survived.

During a team climbing/hiking competition, youth counselor Jarod Crockett aids 15 year old Chris in understanding that sometimes, bad things happen to nice people - even our loved ones and best friends - and there's nothing we can do about it except keep their memory alive by holding them in our hearts while moving on with our lives.  

Using an old Jeep and a staged accident, Jarod puts Chris in a situation where he has the ability to make it all end well, the way he so desperately wishes the accident with his friend Nick had ended.  Jarod shares the pain and remorse that he feels over losing his own brother with Chris, giving the youngster the confidence to "save" Jarod by going for help.  In the end, Chris comes through, is able to accept that his best friend's fate was no fault of his, and go own with his own life.

When Jarod warns Miss Parker that someone is going to try to kill her father, Broots hacks into The Centre's mainframe and discovers a file named "Arkham," that details the plot.  For the first time, Mr. Parker plans to go with his daughter to Catherine Parker's grave on the anniversary of her death.  However, a device on The Centre's helipad will cause the helicopter that is returning Mr. Parker's from his vacation to explode, unless Miss Parker can either warn him off or disable it.

Racing against time, it's Angelo who ultimately gives Miss Parker the answer that she needs from the encrypted Arkham file.  Meanwhile, Miss Parker does some "sweeping" and "cleaning" of her own while, as the assassins attempt to stop her from getting where she needs to be, in a multi-level building that has no power.  In the end, it comes down to Brigitte and Miss Parker - one determined to kill Mr. Parker and the other just as determined to save his life.  A battered and weary Miss Parker wins the day, and Mr. Parker's helicopter lands safely.

It appears that Miss Parker thrashed the British accent right out of Brigitte, who ends up speaking without a trace of it.  Recalling that it was Miss Parker who gave him his first box of Cracker Jacks with a "toy surprise" in it, Angelo returns the favor by giving Miss Parker a surprise of her own - a DSA that shows her father putting up his usual stoic front over the death of his wife, then breaking down and sobbing when he was finally alone.

Miss Parker and her father finally go, together, to Catherine Parker's grave.  Jarod calls Miss Parker and tells her to read the card on a bouquet of flowers that he sent.  The card reads: "Her voice is inside you."

Guest Stars:  Nynno Ahli (Hayes), Mark Arnott (Mr. Conti), Christopher Kennedy Masterson  (Chris Conti), Mike Ornest (Paramedic) and David Sawyer (Young Mr. Parker)



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