In which we’re going surfin’, surfin’ USA.
We’re off into season three of The A-Team and it’s Assignment Miami Beach for the boys when a mobster threatens the owners of a local hotel.
The boss sends his goons in to show the sisters who own the hotel that he means business. Unfortunately for him, they’re some of the least threatening in the business. One claims that is name is “trouble” and then gently tips over three tables.
Thankfully, the mobster is waiting in the sisters’ office to take things up a notch. He wants the hotel and will stop at nothing to get it – mentioning that he’s got friends in the police force. To top it off, he even extinguishes his cigar in the fishbowl. Absolute boss move.
Over in LA, an off-screen Mr Lee sends the sister to a bar to meet the A-Team. Instead, they find a drunk Irish bartender and a sleazeball asking them to dance. Don’t fret though, it’s just Hannibal and Face scoping them out – with the girls taking an instant dislike to Templeton Peck.
The team learn that the mobster, Joey, offered the girls twice what the hotel was worth, but they won’t sell because they believe his pressure caused their father’s fatal heart attack. They can’t pay as the hotel is failing under the squeeze from Joey, but they’ll sign over the property to the team until they’ve made enough profit to cover their fee.
Of course, a trip to Florida from LA means a plan ride. Unfortunately for BA, he needs to see a dentist about a sore tooth and the team take advantage to overdose him on sleeping gas. The nurse they bribe does leave her number for when he wakes up though, so it’s not all bad.
To cover their tracks, they set BA in the driver’s seat of a car with Murdock as his passenger (in some short shorts) and convince him that he’s forgotten the journey through tiredness. There’s no time for the Sergeant to ask many questions though as Joey’s two goons immediately start a fight with the new owners. The team soundly beat them, with BA throwing them over a car for good measure.
Out on the beach, BA outdoes Murdock with even shorter shorts while the sisters complain that Face has all the staff wearing bikinis. Hannibal assures them it’s all for show, as Joey is watching them from his hotel and needs to see their establishment picking up business.
In Joey’s office, we learn that he’s not the big boss and is on the hook to buy the hotel within four days. He sends his girlfriend to trap Hannibal, which she does while the rest of the team look on impressed at the Colonel’s way with the ladies.
Hannibal is pleased to be captured though as it’s his chance to meet Joey. He burns the contract for sale and bluffs that he knows why the mobster needs the hotel. In retaliation, he’s punched in the gut and sent away to be killed. The team arrive just in time to rescue Hannibal and drive off in a rented van.
It turns out Joey is working for a Miami councilman, who is turning up the pressure on the mob boss. Worried that Hannibal wasn’t bluffing, he goes to meet a man called Prescott who he thinks may have squealed.
Meanwhile, Face is tasked with getting close to Joey’s girlfriend. Pretending to drown in the sea, he manages to get her to rescue him then admits it was a ruse and asks her out on a date. He is, of course, wearing some very short shorts for this bit. She agrees to go out with him when Joey is busy later, which gives Face the information he was really after.
At a restaurant, a familiar-looking waiter serves Joey and Prescott as they talk about their plans. Prescott assures Joey he’s kept quiet, but Hannibal has bugged the table and learns enough to grab Prescott as he’s leaving.
The team tie Prescott to a train track at the end of a tunnel with the distant sound of an express approaching. Under this threat, he reveals the plan. He is about to legalise gambling in Miami, which will cause the value of the beachfront hotels to surge upwards. Hannibal gets him to sign a document stating that he is reversing his decision.
He shouts to be untied but the boys just stand back and watch… as Murdock cycles along the track with a light on the front of his bike and a tape deck playing train sounds.
The team drop off the signed document and send it to Tawnia but are then captured by Joey and his girlfriend – who had decided against going on the date with Face. The mobster locks them in the basement of one of his buildings while he heads off to round up the sisters to apply more pressure – hoping to get them to give up the document.
The basement is, of course, filled with useful equipment and tools so the team begin a montage. As the sisters are brought in, the team burst through the door firing nails and bolts at the mobsters. The tide is soon in the team’s favour and the bad guys try to escape by car, one of which gets flipped by an improvised mortar shell. Even better for the team, the dodgy councilman arrives on the scene and gets rounded up too.
With the battle won, the team relax on the beach and at least one of the sisters has warmed up to Face now. BA’s found a newspaper though and realised he got to Miami a lot faster than he was told – leading to him attacking Murdock with Face and Hannibal trying to hold him back.
Let’s wrap up with a few key questions.
Does Hannibal wear a disguise?
Yes – two. He’s an Irish bartender to scope out the clients and later a waiter to spy on Joey and Prescott. Mr Lee is also mentioned but not seen.
Does BA get on a plane?
Yes, but he doesn’t know about it for a few days.
Should someone be dead?
Close, but probably not. There is a car flip, but it’s one of the gentler kind and the passengers seem like the type to wear their seatbelts.
Bullets and Bikinis is a strange episode to start season three of The A-Team. It’s a fine episode, with a simple and classic story. A mobster is trying to force two sisters out of a hotel they inherited from their father. It fails to stand out though, just walking through the usual checkpoints rather than making the most of them.
Face gets the best of the episode, bickering with the sisters about his tactics and getting a side mission to date the mob boss’ girlfriend. Aside from the incredibly short shorts, there’s not much to remember in the villains or action and it’s a shame Tawnia’s not included.