"Carnival of Spies"

(Original air date 02/13/77)


Steve is assigned to spy on a German scientist suspected of planning
to sabotage a missile launch


Story: Robert C.Dennis

Teleplay:Robert C. Dennis & Richard Carr

Director: Richard Moder

Following a long exhausting flight to Washington Steve meets with Oscar outside a posh hotel to be briefed on his next assignment, which is to follow Professor Ulrich Rau, (Lloyd Bochner) the East German scientist who designed a ground-to-air weapon system. Oscar suspects that his presence in Washington during the week of the B-1 Bomber missile tests is more than sheer coincidence.

He instructs Steve to sear Rau’s features into his memory while his impersonator, OSI agent Jim Barker, (Dave Shelley) entertains the guest of honor.

Meanwhile inside the hotel, Rau and his two men prepare to go meet their hosts. Schmidt (Peter Weiss) hands Rau a pill designed to mimic the symptoms of a mild heart attack.


After meeting with the fake Steve Austin, Rau is seized by a powerful twinge. His two men insist on carrying him back to his hotel room and have their own doctor examine him.


Inside the elevator, Rau switches with a lookalike, dons a disguise and slips through a back door to an awaiting car, unaware that Steve has spotted the suspicious get away. He tails Rau and his driver Wessler (Ed Faulkner) to a riverbank where he fashions a boat out of a wooden board to follow the two men to a travelling carnival.


The next morning Oscar informs his operative that Rau’s physician has prescribed complete best rest for the next forty-eight hours, which is very convenient for the professor to sabotage the launch and still have enough time to switch back with his double. While informing Oscar of his unusual location, Steve spots Rau entering the psychic Madam Shira’s (Gloria Manon) tent. Unbeknownst to him that the enemy is meeting with his associate.

Several minutes pass and still no sign of Rau. Steve decides to go in on the false pretence of wanting to locate his Uncle Walter he saw entering the tent a few minutes ago. The fortune teller reveals her identity as Kim Durban, (Cheryl Miller) daughter of the carnival manager. She’s filling in for the real Madam Shira who had to step out for a few minutes.


In Shira’s caravan, Rau studies the blueprints for the ground-to-air missile base to be set up in the park with Chef Engineer Herman Lower (Michael Strong). Lower reports a major malfunction that he hopes Rau can remedy within the next twenty-four hours.

In order to win Kim’s trust, Steve fibs about being a detective assigned to nail a robber before he skips town with the loot. Eager to help, Kim goes to Madam Shira’s caravan to enquire about the bearded man she was seen with earlier. Shira smells a rat. She gives Kim the address of a ranch and quickly asks Herman to contact Walden (Wes Parker) to stand ready to eliminate the nuisance once he shows up there looking for his supposed Uncle Walter.


Growing suspicious of Steve’s honesty, Kim requests to see some identification. Caught unawares, Steve has little choice but to confess to being an operative, a story that the woman refuses to swallow. She asks muscle man Hercules (Bob Minor) to escort the intruder off the premises.

In the parking lot, Steve runs after Kim’s van and hops in the back as she drives over to the ranch hoping to meet with the infamous Uncle Walter. In a blink of an eye Steve pounces on Walden poised ready to shoot Kim as she enters the house. She was told this was the uncle’s ranch, prompting Steve to suspect a trap.


Later in the evening, our three partners in crime proceed to go over the instruments to ensure that everything’s in working order for tomorrow’s B-1 Bomber missile launch they plan to intercept. The tests cause three specific rides: the rocket, the big wheel and the merry-go-round to run backwards, much to Steve’s and Kim’s puzzlement.

In her quest to help Steve nail the spy, Kim mentions the blueprints she noticed in Shira’s caravan when she went to enquire about his Uncle Walter. While Steve does a bit of snooping, Kim tries to stall Shira and Herman.


Steve finds the blueprints inside a metal box. As he studies the plan to destroy the B-1 Bomber using the three carnival rides, Hercules sneaks behind and knocks him out.


Convince the snooper is a secret agent, Shira instructs the muscle man to drive the nuisance up to the mountain where he is to dispose of him in an ‘accident’.

Halfway up the road, Steve breaks his bonds, subdues his captor and leaps out of the caravan to run back to the carnival.


There he informs Kim that the park is being used as a ground-to-air missile launch site. He urges her to direct him toward the control chamber in order to stop the countdown, but it’s already too late. The Rocket is about to launch. Steve jumps up and grabs a firm hold of it to prevent it from firing.


Once the task done, he dashes off to the control booth to yank out the cables and catch the two crooks. The B-1 Bomber is now safe to conduct the tests as scheduled.

Back at Rau’s hotel, Steve and Oscar personally escort the man into custody.


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