(TV Series)

(1977)

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7/10
Hard to believe but interesting.
MartinHafer17 March 2013
As long as you know and can ignore some of the usual clichés, this is a very good episode of "Quincy"--one I almost scored an 8. It begins with a very sick guy trying to drive himself to the airport late at night. But, he crashes his car and convinces a passerby to drive the vehicle. However, on the way, another car appears and forces them off the road--and the vehicle flips and explodes. Soon, the driver (who survived) is up on charges for killing his sick passenger and for having drugs in the vehicle. However, Quincy (with his ESP that ALWAYS tells him who is telling the truth) KNOWS the driver is innocent and goes about trying to prove it. But, what he learns about the passenger--THAT is a surprise. The man was on the verge of death already--as he was suffering from a massive overdose of radiation. What happened? Where did the poisoning come from and why would someone want to be 100% certain he was dead?! The show had a few shortcomings (other than the ESP there were also a few other logical jumps--such as Monahan's usual desire to convict ANYONE despite reasonable evidence to the contrary) but was constantly entertaining. Well worth seeing--if not a bit far-fetched. But, it's a TV show, so, like me, you can probably suspend some of your feelings of disbelief.
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6/10
"Our friend Bigelow was a dead man walking." Decent enough early Quincy episode.
poolandrews5 March 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Quincy M.E.: An Unfriendly Radiance starts as Los Angeles coroner Quincy (Jack Klugman) is having a night off at Danny's, however laboratory assistant Sam (Robert Ito) calls him with a puzzling case, that of the dead body of Donald Bigelow (Joby Baker) who apparently died in a car crash but whose body is loaded with deadly amounts of radiation. Quincy agrees to cut his night off short & come in, there he ends up as puzzled as Sam was. It seems that Lt. Monahan (Garry Walberg) has arrested Ray Sanchez (Ronald G. Joseph) for manslaughter since he was driving the car which he claims was forced off the road by another, Quincy says that Donald was a dead man walking & that the radiation was going to kill him anyway & they should be looking for the source. Then Quincy finds out Donald worked for the San Miguel Nuclear Facility which is where he thinks he will find the answers...

Episode 10 from season 2 this Quincy story was directed by Corey Allen & is a pretty good Quincy murder mystery, it's not one of the show's finest fifty minutes but it's still watchable. Here one of the main problems is that the killers are revealed immediately, in fact within the first fifteen seconds so that sort of takes a lot of the mystery element out of the programme & I just sat there waiting for Quincy to find the proof to nail them which predictably he does with the help of a dead goldfish. There's the usual red tape, unhelpful people in authority & bureaucracy that Quincy has to fight to get to the truth but it just all felt a little too routine & like everyone was just going through the motions. The issues surrounding the danger of radiation isn't touched upon at all & is only used as a backdrop & means of murder rather than the moral issue of the week like it surely would have been in later seasons of Quincy. Also I'm not happy about Donald Bigelow not going to see a Doctor, I mean if he was really that ill as he couldn't stand up surely any normal, sane person would have sought medical treatment? The secretary specifically says he came in during the morning & barely made it to his desk so that means he was badly ill all day long, I'm sorry but most of us just know when we have a cold or are just under the weather a bit & instinctively know when there's something more serious the matter with ourselves. I just don't & can't believe that someone that ill for that amount of time would not have sought medical help.

There's a half decent car chase & crash at the start of An Unfriendly Radiance otherwise it's fairly standard exposition based point the camera in the right direction & shoot type stuff. I'm not happy about Ray's wife's verbal attack on Quincy either, I'm not being funny here but it wasn't Quincy's fault that he confessed to murder was it? It wasn't Quincy's fault that Ray already had a record as long as his arm was it? It wasn't Quincy's fault that all the evidence pointed to Ray's guilt was it? No offense but if I was Quincy I would have had Pete the security guard chuck her out on her ear! Quincy was the only person even trying to prove Ray's innocence so I think she should have been a little bit more grateful! The acting here is good especially the regulars as usual.

An Unfriendly Radiance is a decent enough Quincy episode with a slightly hard to swallow plot & a somewhat routine feeling about it. Fans of the show should still like it but it's not a classic episode.
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7/10
No murder mystery here, but still a good episode
rayoflite249 August 2015
An Unfriendly Radiance begins at a nuclear facility where an ailing technician, Donald Bigelow (Joby Baker), is wrapping up his work and about to depart for Mexico with $20,000 promised by his boss, Arthur Lanz (James Wainright), for his services rendered. While pulling out of the parking lot of the facility, he loses consciousness for a few moments doing a face plant on the car horn which draws the attention of a stranger, Ray Sanchez (Ronald Joseph), who offers to help drive him to a hospital instead of the airport. Lanz watches the car go out of the lot in the opposite direction of the airport and sets out in pursuit of them, eventually catching up and running them off the road down a hillside.

Later at Danny's, Quincy (Jack Klugman) is called by Sam (Robert Ito) to assist in analyzing some strange results from the autopsy of Bigelow's body which indicate severe radiation exposure. Quincy's findings lead him to suspect there might be more to Bigelow's death than a gash on the head from the accident, and he is inclined to believe Sanchez's story that they were run off the road and he was not under the influence of the drugs that were found on him.

This is a pretty decent Season 2 episode of Quincy which has plenty of action. Although there really isn't a murder mystery here as we see who the culprits are in the beginning, there is still enough compelling drama to keep the audience entertained and interested. While the nuclear aspect of the story is pretty out there, if you don't get too hung up or focused on that element it is pretty reasonable and enjoyable.
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