Oct 21, 2008

Binoculars...of doom!

The Adventures of the Black Stallion
1.8: The Big Fix

As episodes go in this series, this would have been one of the better ones. It had actual racing, actual training, actual relationships that seemed to make actual sense. At least, it did right up to the point one of the characters whipped out a super high tech pair of binoculars that make horses go insane. Considering the binoculars make their first appearance at the beginning of the episode, things went downhill remarkably fast.

But anyway. Alec and Henry are training the Black for some race. They are at an actual racetrack (this receives a point from me for attempting a believable setting), and they are training the horse on the actual track. All very amazing! Nicely done, show. Only then this woman pulls out her binoculars and starts to shoot supersonic or something beams straight into the Black's head, making him go mad. Mad! And he dumps Alec and runs off. After this, they stick the horse in a paddock and let him calm down, figuring the problem must be that he's an Arabian. Yeah, that's it. So, the Black calms down, only to have crazy lady reappear with her binoculars and makes him go all crazy again.

So Henry calls in the vet, thinking that the only thing that can explain this wacky behavior must be internal. Perhaps he is drugged! My God, a rational explanation! Henry is deeply scarred, you see, because one of his assistants from yesteryear got involved with drugging because he was young and stupid, and Henry just happens to be racing the Black against this old protege in the upcoming Very Important Race. The crazy lady is the sister of this guy's trainer, and she desperately wants her brother to win this race, and the only way to do that is to get Henry to scratch the Black.

A vet examines the Black, but he just attributes his wacky behavior to being an Arabian. So Alec is standing in the stall with the horse when crazy lady pulls a Christina and climbs up in the rafters to shoot her binocular beams back into the Black's head. Her goal here is not only to get the Black scratched, but to wreck Alec's self confidence and belief that he and the Black are the best friends of all time. She completely accomplishes this.

But Henry's old friend or whatever is suspicious, and after trying to get Henry to listen to him and nearly getting a fist planted in his face as the vet screams "the horse wasn't drugged!" he obviously gets no where fast. Then Alec gets his confidence back and they decide to race the horse, so crazy lady gets all upset and pulls out her binoculars of doom again, ready to screw up the race. Only Henry's friend is on to this and alerts Henry. They have to find the crazy lady before she does serious damage.

She prepares to do serious damage, only then Henry and his friend catch her and the Black goes on to win the race after Henry manhandles her a little and steals her binoculars. She appears torn between whether to pout or be seriously troubled by Henry's exuberance.

Here she just looks a little sick. Henry, well, like I said. Exuberance. Or, maybe that's just how he is in every episode, when he isn't yelling.

So the Black is victorious, Henry and his old friend decide to let the guy's youthful inexperience go so they can actually be friends again, and I guess the crazy lady and her brother go to jail, because that's where people who mess with horses go in stories like this. There is never a fine, or a slap on the wrist. There is jail. Unless you're Brad Townsend, whose awesomeness eclipses any judicial system.


Heather said...

I just recently discovered the main horse to play the Black in this show was Doc's Keepin' Time, the quarter horse ex-racer that played Black Beauty in the 1994 movie. So he's been an Arabian and a thoroughbred. Identity crisis?

Mara said...

He also played Gulliver (the horse who gets smashed by the semi) in The Horse Whisperer. For a horse, he's got a pretty impressive resume.

Molly said...

I have no recollection whatsoever of this episode. I'm pretty sure that's a good thing.