Sunday, July 2, 2006


'Hustle' returned to the American airwaves for its third season this week, and the fact that it's been shifted to Wednesdays on AMC rather than the graveyard of Saturday nights speaks highly for it.

It's always great to see Mel Smith in anything and he was the perfect choice for playing the mark, Benny "The Boozer" Frazier. Bad enough that he was a thuggish lout (or if you prefer, a loutish thug) with a miserable family to match him, but he was a human trafficker to boot, so he deserved getting taken.

But even better for Toobworld was how 'Hustle' filled in the blanks between the seasons. With a flashback that splained why this gang of con artistes needed to rebuild their capital, they showed that even when we can't see them on the TV, the lives of Toobworld characters continue.

During the hiatus, Mickey and the gang weren't taking a break; they were simply over here in America and working new turf, specifically Las Vegas. And that's where Danny Blue screwed up and grabbed the wrong case during the switch.

The con went down in a hotel, o'bvious by the fact that Danny was wearing a bellboy uniform. So why can't we assume the hotel was the Montecito of 'Las Vegas'? If it's a question of any major differences in the style of uniform, that's an easy out: we just changed the bellboy uniforms at my place of employ. They've gone from looking like lawn jockeys to a Foreign Legion bowling team. (I liked it better when they looked like the Flying Monkeys of Oz.)

'Hustle' is usually free of heavy violence - they all did get beat up this past week, and Danny was shot in the first episode I ever saw. But it's unlikely we are going to be subjected to seeing them involved in any murder case.

But who knows what might have happened in Vegas? It stayed in Vegas, remember? So if there was a murder investigation connected to the con they pulled, it's possible Albert et al. might have had to deal with the characters we know from 'C.S.I.', at the very least with an investigation by Lt. Brass.

And even though the actor who played him has sadly passed away, I'd like to think that private investigator Dan Tanna is still working cases in Sin City. And maybe his snooping about gave the team reason to pack up and head back to Merrie Old England.

But I think the connection to 'Las Vegas' with the use of a Montecito hotel room would make the best bet for a connection.

So why did I suggest Robert Urich's show instead of James Caan's in the heading?

I would think the answer was o'bviou$.......

Hrmmmmm..... Maybe they attended a prize fight title bout while in Las Vegas where they could have bumped into 'Arli$$'......


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