Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Long-Legged Models and The Singing Skirt

So last night I watched The Long-Legged Models.

A lot of the time I stared blankly at the screen, rather confused. I think I need to watch the uncut again; season 1 episodes are mangled even worse because of their longer running time.

Of course, I could follow the basic plot along alright. And I still spotted those similarities with The Singing Skirt, although now I realize I also have another episode mixed up in my thoughts. I’ve been thinking The Long-Legged Models is the episode that features the real-life spot Gardena, as opposed to The Singing Skirt’s apparently made-up Rowena. But it is not, and now I’m wondering which is the Gardena episode. I’m positive there is one.

There are still enough similarities between the episodes, however, that the parallels run about as good as those between the original versions of the stories and the ones that have announced themselves as remakes (i.e., The Silent Partner versus The Candy Queen, etc).

Gambling does play a part in The Long-Legged Models, albeit it’s more in the background than in The Singing Skirt.

There’s still those pesky three guns that confuse everyone from the defendant to Perry himself. But Hamilton doesn’t make as big a deal out of what Perry does with the guns as he does in The Singing Skirt, even though it seems like what Perry does in The Long-Legged Models is much more blatant.

Perry still tries to use said guns to confuse the issue and make his client look less guilty, but instead everything turns upside-down and the murder gun is discovered in her possession anyway. The difference is that in The Long-Legged Models, she deliberately switches guns to protect someone else, instead of the guns being switched on her without her knowledge as in The Singing Skirt.

A girl whom the defendant thinks of as her friend ends up playing a part in framing her for the murder. In The Long-Legged Models, she’s also the actual murderer. In The Singing Skirt, she is not.

All in all, I definitely still consider the episodes connected, in the same way I notice similarities between The Fugitive Nurse and The Frantic Flyer, even though the latter doesn’t officially claim to be a remake of the former.

One unique difference where The Long-Legged Models and The Singing Skirt are concerned, however, is that both are based on separate stories written by Mr. Gardner, instead of the pseudo-remake being a television-only thing. And I have to wonder why he used the idea of multiple guns more than once. I thought that in general, if there’s such a unique plot point as the confusion over multiple guns and Perry inadvertently making it worse, the author would try not to repeat it. To his credit, he did have Perry do different things with the guns in each case to confuse the issues, but still, it surprises me to have used that plot angle twice.

Scrolling through the plot summary for the book version of The Long-Legged Models, I notice that while the murderer is still the same person as in the episode, she kills in self-defense in the book. In the episode, the implication is that it’s premeditated murder. I much prefer the idea that it was self-defense, especially since (at least in the episode) she’d been trying so hard to turn her life around.

On the series, self-defense killings don’t happen too often, but enough so that I might do a post to gather them together. Those, and the sub-category of when it’s an accident. They’re kind of a refreshing change from it so often being premeditated, although it is amazing how every one of the people who kills accidentally or in self-defense can never seem to speak up until Perry puts the pieces together in court. Some of them say they would never allow the wrong person to be convicted, at least, but they sure let things go on and on before they reveal the truth. Of course, I realize it's that way for the sake of the plot.

I’m looking forward to watching The Long-Legged Models uncut soon, to pick up the rest of the episode’s story once again. I just came from watching the uncut Velvet Claws, and it makes so much more sense in its originally intended state!

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