Episode Number: 12 according to broadcast order, and 2 to production order.
Production Nº: 780-02. Airdate: Saturday, December 22, 1984. Writer: Larry Brody. Director: Kevin Connor.
Guest Cast: Anne Lloyd Francis [Sarah Ganders] / Vincent Bagetta [Phil Holland] / John Calvin [Tim] / Linden Chiles [Henry Watson] / Clare Peck [Sheila] / Tom Dahlgren [Senator Donald Young].
Other Titles: In German: "Fitneß-Terror" ("Fitness Terror").
Carol and Sydney are hired by Henry Watson, a businessman who is being blackmailed because of his love for Sheila, a fellow worker. The couple have to keep their inter-office romance secret, because the company they work for frowns on such romances, and they could both be fired. They tell Carol and Sydney that they have been going to a famous health spa called “Ganders” to be together in secret, and that photos of them together were mailed to them with a demand for $20,000, to be left at “Ganders”. They paid the amount, but instead of ceasing, the blackmail demands have continued with more pictures, and they have paid more than $40,000 since.
The two detectives decide that they will go undercover at the spa to catch the blackmailer in the act. Carol, always the health enthusiast, is eager to get to the spa and get into the vigorous regimen. Sydney, who loves her junk food pleasures, doesn’t look forward to the programmed exercise and health food diet, but Carol reminds her that the blackmailer has demanded more money, to be paid that night. They arrive with Sydney’s base violin and their bags in the back of their car, and find that the spa has guards to keep out the curious, since many well-known celebrities and politicians go there for their health. Sarah Gander, the owner, meets them when they arrive and assigns them to Tim, one of the staff, who takes them to cottage 6, passing by cottage 4 which Sydney says looks nicer. But that cottage has been reserved for another guest for the past two months, and the women settle down in cottage 6.
They meet Phil Holland, who Sarah says has been staying there for some months, and he praises the health spa’s regimen, much to Sydney’s disgust. He has cottage 5, and unknown to everyone, has added sophisticated electronic equipment to his cottage, and has been checking each occupant and their car’s license plate to make sure of their identity. He finds out that Carol and Sydney are detectives, and begin to watch them more closely. But Sydney is already suspicious of him, since she saw him sneak into cottage 4, which she knows is vacant.
The next morning Carol and Sydney begin the program of exercise. Henry and Sheila are part of their group, and so is Phil Holland. Henry and Sheila tell the two detectives that the blackmailer has told them to leave the money on the jogging trail in a hollow tree at midnight. That night Carol and Sydney stake out the trail with one of Raymond’s infrared camera, and they watch as Henry and Sheila place the money in the tree and leave. Soon a rustle in the bushes is heard, and a figure in one of the spa’s exercise suits is seen. The figure starts to take the money from the tree, and Carol begins to take pictures. But the click of the camera is heard by the blackmailer, who hides his face and flees back to the spa’s buildings, followed by Carol and Sydney. But when they get to the buildings, the blackmailer has given them the slip in the maze of rooms around the swimming pool, and they see several people wearing the exercise suits walking around, any of who could be the crook.
Carol develops the film to show Henry and Sheila, but the blackmailer was wearing a mask, so his identity is still unknown. Carol and Sydney encourage the unhappy lovers, telling them that their famous “plan B” will be their next step. Shane will check out the staff and guests to see if any have records or could be suspicious for any reason, especially Phil Holland, who has been there as a guest long enough to be the blackmailer. Carol and Sydney then pretend to go to breakfast, where the tofu and yogurt menu so disgusts Sydney that she leaves the table. Carol tells the member of the table, including Henry and Phil and Sarah, that Sydney is suffering from an unhappy love affair with a playboy named Shane, and that her father has forbidden her to continue seeing the man, much to her dismay.
Phil Howard goes to cottage 6 with a bottle of wine, where he finds Sydney. She has been munching on forbidden snacks, which she hides in her base fiddle case. Seeing them, he pretends to be sympathetic to her cause of having to suffer the health food there, and persuades a suspicious Sydney to drink with him. She pretends to go along to see what he has in mind, which is to go down the road to a steakhouse for a “real meal,” until Carol arrives, and makes Phil leave. Carol reminds Sydney that if any guest is caught leaving the spa grounds until their time is regimen up, they will be forced to leave “Ganders,”which is what Phil had in mind all along.
They realize that Holland is trying to get rid of them, so they break in to his cottage, where they find a computer, an private phone beside the regular one supplied by the spa, eavesdropping equipment, and a complete list since he arrived of all of the guests, and oddly enough, a ceramic flower pot with flowers and potting tools. They leave, but when Holland comes back he sees the small piece of tape that he left on the closed door has been broken by intruders, and knows that someone has been there.
Later that day, Shane arrives in a fancy sports car and drives past the guards, pretending to be Sydney’s playboy, and Sydney leaves her exercise class to run down to greet him, playing the part of his lover. He slips her a list of the guests and staff while embracing her, and they play out the scene of him being forced to leave Sydney forever, but not before he ostentatiously gives her a
huge diamond ring as a parting gift, which is seen by all watching, including Tim, Sarah and Holland.
Carol and Sydney find out from Shane’s list that there is no such person as Phil Holland, but does not realize that he is preparing a bomb in the flowerpot with plastic explosives. Holland has been hired to assassinate Senator Donald Young, who has been carrying on negotiations with several important Latin American countries, when he arrives at “Ganders” for a secret rest stay. As Carol and talk, they hear a noise, and look up to see note taped to their window. It is a blackmail note, telling Sydney that her meeting with Shane will be exposed unless the diamond ring is turned over that night at the pool.
That night, Holland puts the bomb in cottage 4, and follows Carol and Sydney to the pool, where he helps them capture the blackmailer, who is Tim, one of the staff. With their case over, the detectives thank Holland for his help, and plan to leave, much to his relief. While they are packing their bags, Carol and Sydney see a helicopter arrive, with Senator Young and his staff and guards. They realize that Holland somehow is planning to attack the Senator, but before they can leave to warn him, Holland arrives and ties them up and gags them. It turns out that he had placed a bugging device on the window of their cottage, and has been listening to every word they have said, which is how he knew about the blackmailer and the diamond ring.
Holland goes back to his cottage to get the detonator device, then drives off in one of the spa’s golf carts. Back in their bungalow, Sydney manages to get a small knife out of her bass case, and cuts herself free. She frees Carol, and they run to the door to see Holland fleeing in the cart. Carol runs after him, while Sydney goes to warn the Senator. She manages to persuade the secret service agents to let her inside, where she sees the flowerpot that Holland had in his bungalow. She grabs it, and tosses it out the door. Carol, who has grabbed a horse, rides hard and fast to catch up with Holland, who has stopped the cart to activate the bomb. Carol rides into him and knocks him down just as he detonates the bomb, which explodes harmlessly outside saving the Senator.
Back at the Caulfield Mansion, a satisfied Henry Watson, while paying them their fee, tells Carol and Sydney that Sheila has taken a job with another firm, and that they are now free to marry. The two detectives tell him that they are all lucky to be alive, since they have found that Phil Holland was really a hired assassin named Stryker, and a very dangerous killer.
All "Partners In Crime" episode synopsis are © 2003 by Mia - Wonderland.
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