A bitter, antagonistic replacement whom none of Saunders' men can stand (with good reason) is wounded and pinned down by German snipers...who use him to try and lure his fellow Americans into their ambush.
Saunders gets a replacement, Mason, who is completely self-centered and detestable, and he immediately antagonizes everyone in the squad. While on a mission, they are caught in the open with little cover, and they are pinned down by a well entrenched German infantry supported by a machine gun. Mason, badly wounded and unable to get himself to cover, is used by the Germans to tempt the Americans to expose themselves by trying to rescue him. The other GIs are posed with the ethical decision of leaving him behind or risking their lives trying to save the detestable Mason. It is highly dramatic to watch as one GI after another comes to grips with his own ethics and makes the decision to risk his own life trying to save Mason - not because of any redeeming value in Mason, but because of their own humanity.Written by
I watched this episode as a youngster and have never forgotten it. I thought that when I revisited it over 50 years on that it might disappoint. How wrong I was. This episode and all the other episodes of Combat stand up as tough and real as anything made since and that includes films like "Saving Private Ryan". The cinematography and acting are first class. Vic Morrow's Sgt Saunders goes way beyond clichéd war hero fare and his direction of this episode is spot on. The seemingly simple scenario is used as a means of character revelation and development. Men who hate a fellow squad member risk their lives to rescue him. The episode is tight and tense - move and counter move - with the denouement uncertain. Yes, we believe that the squad will rescue a wounded member but how? By the way, the opening credits and theme music still pack a real punch.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this