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Recap / The A Team S 2 E 2 Recipe For Heavy Bread

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The team encounters Lin Duk Coo, the Vietnamese cook who kept them and some of their fellow soldiers alive during the war, but all is not well — the man is quickly kidnapped and only the team's quick intervention saves him from being executed. Digging into the case, they find that the head of the POW camp where they were sent ordered Lin killed in revenge for helping the American soldiers, and a crime boss' son (also from the camp) is willing to help him do it. Now it's up to the A-Team to repay Lin and stop the bad guys once and for all.

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This episode contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Character Witness: Lin slipped food to Hannibal, Face, B.A., and Murdock, keeping them alive. Years later, when he's being targeted for execution by the camp's old leader, he encounters them again. They remember what he did and are happy to take on the job of saving him pro bono.
  • Hypocritical Humor: B.A. ignores Face when he tells him to be careful with the apartment, as it isn't actually his. But when the team has to go to B.A.'s hotel room at the end of the episode, B.A. chastises Face for putting his feet on the table, saying he'll scuff the finish.
  • I Owe You My Life: Lin Duk Coo smuggled food to the POWs in the war camp, risking that he would be executed if found out. In the process, he saved the lives of a number of American soldiers, including the A-Team. Once they figure out he's in trouble, they are determined to return the favor.
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  • Please Shoot the Messenger: A former North Vietnamese cook who helped the A-Team out was smuggled into the U.S. along with a note along these lines for the smuggler's accomplice. He escapes, but is caught again. The murder attempt kick-starts the episode's plot.
  • Revenge Before Reason: General Chow. He's one half of a highly profitable heroin smuggling operation, but he's willing to jeopardize the whole thing to get revenge on a cook who helped four prisoners escape from his POW camp ten years ago. His partner even points out how stupid it is, but he gets overruled.
    Thomas Angel: In case you've forgotten something, old buddy, we're in the narcotics business and not the revenge business. Now you've got the distribution pipeline set up from China and I've got the best distribution outlet there could possibly be and I don't see that revenge has got anything to do with it.
    Chow: You are not of my culture. Perhaps you should ask your father about the laws of silence, the omerta of the American underworld. Perhaps he can explain revenge to you.
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  • Running Gag: Face has (inadvertently) scammed everyone into believing he's a designer, Mr. Toney, and is staying in his apartment, which, being fancy, has rules, like "no messing up the common areas." Face having to explain the behavior of the rest of the team and the bizarre events that occur when they're around makes up a series of jokes over the episode.
  • Something Only They Would Say: The team initially suspects Face might be right about Lin working at a particular restaurant when they get some of Lin's bread, as he had a habit of adding ginseng to it. Later, when asked how he can be sure it was Lin, B.A. remarks on his characteristic way of saying "ay yi yi" — apparently a corruption of lyrics from an old Western song he was taught by Murdock.
  • You Have No Idea Who You're Dealing With: Thomas Angel (whose father is apparently a major criminal) tells Hannibal that he doesn't know who he's messing with. Hannibal makes it clear that he does know who he's messing with; he just doesn't care.
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