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The Rockford Files: Second Chance

Gandolph Fitch rolls back into Rockford's life. He's found true love, a woman named Theda he met purchasing some used stereo equipment. She has a fine singing voice and Gandy invites his friend “Rockfish” to buy in, because he needs cash for a recording session. On the way out of the club, someone hits Gandy and drives off with Theda. Now Gandy needs Rockford to figure out why. Jim figures out who hit Gandy easily enough. It's her ex-husband Joe, who should still be in prison. But thanks to a man named Shapiro and the “Second Chances” program, he's out. And he needs something he left with Theda before he went in. When Jim and Gandy figure out what that is, they realize Theda's ex has dragged her – and them – into a major racketeering scheme.

Episode Info  

Episode number: 4x4
Production Number: 47503
Airdate: Friday October 14th, 1977

Director: Reza Badiyi
Writer: Gordon Dawson

Special Guest Stars
Dionne WarwickDionne Warwick
As Theda Best

Guest Stars
Isaac HayesIsaac Hayes
As Gandolph "Gandy" Fitch
Stuart MargolinStuart Margolin
As Evelyn "Angel" Martin
Malachi ThroneMalachi Throne
As Mr. Shapiro
Tony BurtonTony Burton
As Joe Moran

Co-Guest Stars
Frank ChristiFrank Christi
As Brill
Richard SeffRichard Seff
As Arnold Rose
Jack GarnerJack Garner
As Bartender
Rudy DiazRudy Diaz
As Raoul
Luis DelgadoLuis Delgado
As Officer Billings
Michael J. LondonMichael J. London
As Grizelli (as Michael Jay London)
Sean GarrisonSean Garrison
As Lanark
Vivi JanissVivi Janiss
As Pawn Shop Proprietor
Milt ObermanMilt Oberman
As Farnum
Janet DeyJanet Dey
As Secretary
Episode Notes
The correct spelling of Theda's name appears (in print) on the label of a record Jim finds in her apartment.

If you're tuning in this episode to see Angel Martin, he only appears in a brief cameo at the end.

Episode Quotes
Answering Machine: This is Global Publications. Our records show you did not return the free volume of the Encyclopedia of Weather, so we'll be sending you the remaining twenty nine volumes. You'll be billed accordingly.

Jim: (answering the phone) Wilson residence!
Gandolph Fitch: Sounds like Rockfish to me.
Jim: Gandy?
Gandolph Fitch: Yeah. Why the bum handle?
Jim: Oh, it's that time of the month. The vultures are gathering.

Gandy: If the record companies don't come through, I'm going to cut a demo. And I'll lean on a few DJs to get it played, too.
Jim: I don't think you can muscle a song onto the charts, Gandy.
Gandy: They ain't never been muscled by Gandolph Fitch!

Jim: Gandy, just turn it over to the police, huh? That's what they're there for.
Gandy: And they'll just drop everything to find out who hit a black ex-con over the head?

Dennis Becker: It's against the law to show a civilian someone's rap sheet.
Jim: Well, then, don't show me, Dennis. Just tell me what's in it.

Joe Moran: (to Theda) The speakers better be in there. Because if they ain't, I'm going down the tubes, you understand? And I ain't flushing out along, either!

Theda Best: I'm not married. Joe's my ex. He still thinks I'm his property. And maybe I am.

Shapiro: That morgue-meat husband of yours didn't believe you pawned the stereo. And I'm inclined to agree with him.
Theda: But I did. I really did.
Shapiro: Well, you'll tell us. Sooner or later, honey, you'll tell us. Lanark and Brill are going to see to that.

Jim: (as Gandy throttles a thug) Knock it off, Gandy! He can't say anything if he can't talk!

Gandolph Fitch: I'm paying you to do a job, so stop waffling and punch in!!
Jim: You can't pay me enough to handle this gig! It's a police matter now, now let them deal with it!
Gandolph Fitch: How about twenty-five percent of my ten percent of Theda's deal? I really need your help, Rockford!
Jim: Rockford?
Gandolph Fitch: Yeah. Rockford.

Shapiro: Even if you hit most of the casinos and it went perfect, how much could you make? Fifty, seventy-five grand, tops? I don't have people killed for that price. The big money's in the cashier's cages. And if you hit them you have to have the fluorescent dye codes and schedules.
Jim: Which you have.
Shapiro: I figure it's good for a million.
Jim: For that you can have people killed.

Jim: Your cover of respectability is looking a little thin, Mr. Shapiro. But you could be out in five years if the second chance program survives the scandal.
Shapiro: They'll never prove I killed anyone!
Jim: Oh, yeah, they are going to prove you killed Moran sooner or later.

Jim: Well, Gandy, how about that. You've just been conned by the worst in the business!

Episode Goofs
Nitpick: Angel Martin and Gandolph Fitch both supposedly served time in San Quentin prison with JIm Rockford yet Gandy fails to recognize Angel. They would have had to have been there at the same time because Gandy was doing a life sentence.

Episode References
Gandolph Fitch first appeared in the second season episode entitled “The Hammer of C Block.” In that story he needed “Rockfish” to help him clear his name, and we learned why Rockford owed him a favor. Like Rockford, he didn't commit the crime he served time for. He returned in the third season for “Just Another Polish Wedding” where he got involved with another private detective, Gabby Hayes, whose operation was just this side of illegal.

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