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Recap / JAGS 03 E 04 Blind Side

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This episode opens with two F-14 Tomcats flying nap of the earth in formation. The trailing aircraft appears to lose control, stall out and crash, taking out an SUV with a woman and her kids. The flight was out of the Naval Strike and Air /warfare Center in NAS Fallon, the replacement for the now closed TOPGUN school. Harm, who once graduated from the same school is sent along with Mac to investigate. The fact that the school's commander is Harm's former TOPGUN instructor is also a factor.


Initial investigations prove inconclusive, as the team finds no rational reason for why the aircraft lost control. The pilot claims wind shear, but the flight lead, who was also the base commander who once instructed Harm, disputes that. To finally determine the facts, Harm takes a Tomcat up to fly the exact same sortie, with Mac in the backseat as a passenger and his old instructor as flight lead. On the flight back, Harm notices that his instructor has some minor difficulty landing his plane. This makes Harm suspect that something else caused that crash - and that something could very well torpedo the career of his former mentor.

This episode features a cameo by Sarah Silverman as a public affairs officer.

  • A Father to His Men: Captain Hochhausen behaves this way. Even when a mishap occurred due to his failing eyesight, the captain doesn't try to shift blame. He tries to blame weather.
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  • Big Applesauce: Lt Shiparelli is from the Bronx. She even goes on a rant about how there is nothing fruit like about New York.
  • Blind Mistake: Captain Hochhausen's eyesight is deteriorating. As a result, he misjudged the distance to and height of a Ridge, requiring a 7-g pull up to clear the Ridge top. The Captain clears the Ridge, but his wingman doesn't.
  • The Cameo: Sarah Silverman as Tina Shiparelli. She even gets the opportunity to get a few comedic rants in.
  • Drives Like Crazy: Lieutenant Shiparelli, who was a cab driver in civilian life.
  • Fridge Brilliance: The captain clears the Ridge easily, but his wingman clips a telephone pole. Why? Because, the captain was flying the smaller and nimbler A-4 Skyhawk, while his wingman was flying the bulkier and less maneuverable F-14. The bigger aircraft didn't have enough room to avoid the telephone pole.

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