A Man Called Sloane (originally airing on December 1st, 1979) opens with Sloane and Torque in France, covertly observing a test of a laser cannon in an isolated valley that in no way resembles L.A.'s Bronson Canyon. (Sure!) They're not the only ones, as Sloane observes an attractive woman (Andrea Howard) also watching. As these bystanders stand by, a team of six women attack the scientists testing the laser, beat them up, and steal the weapon.
repels down a cliff to intercept their fleeing truck, only to have his
ass handed to him by the "Sweethearts," and then be tossed
unceremoniously off the moving vehicle.
It's not a
total embarrassment for UNIT's "only Top Priority Agent," though –
somehow, in the melee, he managed to steal the ruby needed to make the
laser cannon function. Anyway, UNIT decides to try and lure the thieves
into the open by having Torque pose as an African king who is auctioning
off one of the only two other rubies capable powering the device.
KARTEL baddie Bannister (Ted Hamilton)
and his all-female terrorist squad - The Sweethearts – as well as the
beautiful KGB agent that Sloane saw in France, all converge in Vancouver
to fight over the gem. The usual hi jinks ensue.
As a poster on the IMDb points out, this is a smaller-scale, faster-paced remake of the Death Ray 2000
pilot film, which hadn't been seen on TV yet, with the gratuitous
addition of the sexy "Sweethearts" – a virtual necessity on Fred
Silverman's NBC at the time. The episode is briskly directed by veteran
B-movie and TV auteur Jack Starret (Cleopatra Jones, Race With The Devil), who, in keeping with the tradition of nepotism on the Sloane set, cast his daughter as one of the Sweethearts! Not the series' best episode, but far from its worst.
• Andrea Howard, who portrays KBG operative Anna, also co-starred with Don Adams the following year in the first Get Smart feature, The Nude Bomb, where she inexplicably took the place of Barbara Feldon's 99. She was pretty and likable, but a poor substitute for Feldon.
With so much of today's TV being shot in Canada, I find it interesting
and amusing that in this 1979 production, Los Angeles is standing in for
Vancouver, rather than the other way around!