"It Takes a Thief" To Steal a Battleship (TV Episode 1968) Poster

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When Thieves Collide!
ShadeGrenade5 May 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Back in the U.S.A., Mundy is approached at the airport by a sexy blonde who tells him that a man in a phone booth has a gun trained on him. She orders him to get on a plane bound for Geneva. He gives his would-be kidnappers the slip and reports back to Noah Bain.

The S.I.A. chief has a new mission for him - to break into the safe of a man named Bjornsen and steal N.A.T.O. defence secrets before he can sell them to the highest bidder.

In Geneva, Mundy meets the blonde again, and her boyfriend, George Palmer, also a thief. He is also planning on breaking into the same safe, but for a different reason - to steal a valuable necklace...

Likable Bill Bixby guests here as 'Palmer', a fellow thief. The actor was best known at that time for the sitcom 'My Favourite Martian', and would go on to star in 'The Magician' and 'The Incredible Hulk'. The best moments feature Palmer and Mundy trying to out-con one another. At one point, Mundy even uses fake police to attempt to deport his rival!

There's no actual battleship here, only a model one in Bjornsen's villa, and this is where the valuables are.

Favourite moment - Palmer and Mundy duking it out in a hotel room while the blonde ( never named, incidentally ) sits watching them, calmly eating an apple!
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Robert Wagner and Bill Bixby work well together
bensonmum229 September 2017
A diplomat is suspected of having stolen NATO documents that he intends on selling to the highest bidder. Mundy's mission is to pose as a photographer, infiltrate the diplomat's villa, and recover the documents. The problem is, however, Mundy's got some competition. Another world-class thief, George Palmer (Bill Bixby), has been casing the villa and intends to steal a very valuable necklace. Al and George will battle it out to see who can get there first.

To Steal a Battleship is easily one of the best episodes I've seen so far. The actual theft isn't much to write home about, so that's not the reason. Instead, what makes this episode so special is the way Robert Wagner and Bill Bixby work off each other. Their back and forth and one-upmanship is on another level altogether. It's a blast. There are so many moments in To Steal a Battleship that work, I can't list them all. But my absolute favorite set-piece has to be the fistfight the two have in the hotel room. While the two go at it, The Blonde (Janis Hansen) watches on, munching an apple like popcorn in a movie theater. Funny stuff. Other than Susan Saint James, I've yet to see co-star in the series the Wagner worked so well with. I haven't looked to see if he comes back, but I can only hope that Bill Bixby pops up in a future episode.
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