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Recap / The A Team S 5 E 12 Without Reservations

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After a particularly difficult mission (represented via Stock Footage from "Holiday in the Hills") Stockwell agrees to give the A-Team two weeks without any assignments. Murdock has gotten a job at a local Italian restaurant and invites Face and Frankie to dine at the restaurant. They agree, only to get taken hostage when mobsters take over the restaurant, planning to use it to pull a hit on an Attorney General who's planning to indict six of their allies.

This episode includes examples of the following tropes:

  • Anchovies Are Abhorrent: Murdock puts a message for help on a pizza being delivered to B.A. and Hannibal, and the way he gets their attention so they don’t simply eat the pizza before noticing the message is by putting anchovies on it, which he knows B.A. hates.
  • Badass in Distress: Murdock, Face, and Frankie all get taken captive when mobsters take over the restaurant where Murdock is working. Even worse for Face, who gets shot by the mobsters and spends the episode in a state of shock on the kitchen floor.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: In what is already the darkest of the five seasons, this episode is unusually violent by the show's normal standards. It's one of the few episodes to show blood, or any serious injury on a major characternote , and it's by far the most graphic example.
  • Busman's Holiday: After a particularly difficult mission, Stockwell agrees to give the team two weeks vacation. Murdock invites Face and Frankie to his new job at an Italian restaurant, which gets everyone there held hostage by mobsters. It took B.A. ordering a pizza to stop them.
  • The Casanova: After nearly bleeding out on the kitchen floor, Face spent two days in a delirious, semi-comatose state in the hospital, during which time he managed to flirt with two different nurses and get both their telephone numbers.
  • Evil All Along: Tommy, the friendly police officer who chats with the restaurant owner and keeps passing by throughout the episode, is actually a Dirty Cop in league with the mob.
  • Kansas City Shuffle: Murdock, while working as a waiter in an Italian restaurant and standing in for the pizza chef, is held hostage by mobsters who are planning to kill an attorney general due to arrive. When B.A. comes in to order a pizza while unaware of the crisis, the mobsters find out about Murdock's fairly standard attempt to call for help after finding a help request written on a paper napkin. What they didn't know was that the real message was the pizza that B.A. just walked off with, since he wrote 'HELP' on it with anchovies. Bonus points for Murdock probably knowing that B.A. hates anchovies, otherwise he and Hannibal would've eaten the message.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: When the team gets the upper hand, genial, goofy Murdock goes after the guy who shot Face, beats him unconscious, and then continues beating him until he's pulled away.
    • More than just that, Murdock spends the entire episode (aside from the very beginning and the very end) serious and demured, when he isn't completely furious.
  • Psycho Party Member: Joey, one of mobsters. He's fidgety and seems to be itching to kill someone. He also keeps harassing the married couple that got caught up in it all, and gets really touchy-feely with the wife.
  • Sleeping with the Boss: There's a married couple in the restaurant when it gets taken over. According to their dialog at the start of the episode, the husband is sleeping with his secretary.
  • Stock Footage: The episode's cold open is actually the cold open from "Holiday in the Hills", lifted directly from that episode and shamelessly stuck into this one.