Mannix (1967–1975)
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Death Is the Fifth Gear 

Joe Mannix is participating in an auto race when he suddenly begins to experience hallucinations. The resulting crash lands him in a private hospital, where the delusions and paranoia ... See full summary »


Paul Krasny


Richard Levinson (created by), William Link (created by) | 2 more credits »


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Episode cast overview:
Mike Connors ... Joe Mannix
Gail Fisher ... Peggy Fair
Mariette Hartley ... Nurse Cara Guild
Jason Evers ... Josh Martin
Elsa Lanchester ... Edna Barrington
Charles Bateman ... Dr. Mel Kenbrook
Eddie Ryder Eddie Ryder ... Mike Fisher
Ward Wood Ward Wood ... Lt. Art Malcolm
Leon Lontoc ... Freddy
Sandy Balson Sandy Balson ... Laura
Ron Nyman ... Police Officer


Joe Mannix is participating in an auto race when he suddenly begins to experience hallucinations. The resulting crash lands him in a private hospital, where the delusions and paranoia continue. But then a young nurse confides in Mannix that the physician in charge of the facility -- whom Mannix also knew as his friend -- has actually been giving him drugs to keep him in that condition. With her help, Mannix arranges an escape, to learn why he has been victimized in this way. Written by aldanoli

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

car race | hospital | lsd | suffocating | See All (4) »







Release Date:

8 March 1972 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Television See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Josh Martin: Joe, why did you leave the hospital? Are you sure it was wise?
Joe Mannix: I had to get away from Mel.
Josh Martin: Mel? He's very upset about this. He's trying to help you.
Joe Mannix: Help me or trying to make sure he kills me this time?
Josh Martin: Joe, that's ridiculous. Why would he want to harm you?
Joe Mannix: That's why I'm here, Josh. You're his lawyer. He's in all kinds of deals. You know his business associates, his personal involvements. There's got to be some connection to me - something he doesn't want me to find out.
Josh Martin: Joe, you know I can't ...
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User Reviews

Aside from the first few minutes, a really exceptional episode.
27 February 2015 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

The show begins at a racetrack. Mannix is about to race in what appears like a formula 3 race (these look like smaller versions of formula 1 cars and are less powerful--sort like a minor leagues for Indy racing). However, as he's going around the track, he begins to hallucinate-- as if he's been given something LSD. The car crashes and Mannix is lucky to be alive.

In the next scene, Mannix is in some private clinic and he's displaying signs of psychosis--acute paranoia, disjoint thoughts-- the works. Folks think this is from a head injury from the wreck but it's the drugs in his system. Plus, over the course of his stay, he's STILL being given drugs by someone! What's this all about and who is behind it?

This episode has a lot of nice twists and turns. The plot is exciting, original and is a great season-ending episode. My only complaints are at the beginning when crappy stock footage is artlessly used. It's pretty obvious the car that explodes is NOT the car Mannix was in-- heck it's not even the same racetrack and he's going the wrong direction! And, you see the guy in the actual crash get out safely--whereas after the crappy clip is shown, Mannix is lying next to the wreck!! Oh brother....but don't stop watching- -it WILL get better!

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