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Half-Pint was the 45th episode of Airwolf and the 12th episode of Season 3. It first aired on 12/21/1985. This is a "Saint John" epsiode. Plenty of details are added to the Saint John story arc. Hawke has most of the action, with Dominic and Caitlin only having small roles. Archangel has a fairly big part and he has a new, very efficient, aide named Samantha.

Plot synopsis

Michael Archangel gives Hawke the surprising news that a boy, Le Van Hawke, is St John's son. Even more surprising, St John's remains have been found and are being repatriated. As always, all is not what it seems. [1]

Episode summary

(spoiler alert - click on expand to read)

Somewhere in the Golden Triangle, a drug lord, General Rangavana hands over a large load of heroin to a drug smuggler Glen Carson who has arrived in a helicopter. Carson's men then massacre the General and his retinue. There's a lot of heroin to be smuggled into America but Carson has a plan. He only needs one man to do it: Stingfellow Hawke!

Archangel has news for Hawke: apparently St John had a son, Le Van Hawke. Hawke doesn't believe it but Archangel says it's all been double and triple checked. Hawke goes to Le Van's school and tells him about St John but Le Van runs away from him saying he already has a father: Darren McBride.

Hawke goes to the McBride residence and meets Minh McBride. She says Le Van is her sister's son. Her sister married an American but she had never seen him. Hawke goes through a box of artefacts and finds a photo of St John and his ring. Darren McBride comes home and welcomes Hawke warmly. He tells him he was with St John as part of a Special Operations Group doing secret cross border operations. During one operation they were ambushed, he saw St John go down.

Over at Clarke Air Force base in the Philippines, we now see Carson, handling repatriation of MIA remains. Caskets are loaded on an aircraft. After this is done, Carson pays some money to the USAF officer in charge. What's going on?

At Knightsbridge, the computer says St John is still MIA. But Hawke says McBride was on the scene and saw St John die. Archangel disagrees. He says maybe McBride saw it wrong or maybe McBride is lying. Hawke asks to see McBride's record--he is a multiple decorated war hero. Not a scratch on his record. Hawke wants to believe McBride. Archangel insists he wouldn't lie to Hawke. Hawke reminds him that he made a promise to help find his brother and he had better start keeping it. It's Archangel's word against McBride.

Hawke meets up with McBride again and tells him he wants to adopt Le Van. McBride says he will talk it over with Minh.

Hawke goes back and opens St John's foot locker. He believes St John is truly dead. Inside he finds a letter for him. St John mentions in the letter that he is being transfered to a top secret Special Operations Group. So McBride has been telling the truth.

Hawke goes to Knightsbridge and tells Archangel that he has decided to adopt Le Van and settle down to a quiet life (implying that he is quitting working for the FIRM). But he has one last request--he wants St John's remains. Archangel says he doesn't even know if St John is still alive or dead. Hawke says: find him!

Meanwhile, Le Van has run away from home. Darren tells Hawke he has contacted a refugee officer, Carson, who knows the Asian community very well. He can help him Le Van. They cruise through Chinatown and spot Le Van about to get into a fight with some toughs who didn't the way he was winning at a games arcade. They chase off the toughs.

Privately with Hawke, Le Van tells him he ran away from home because he was afraid of the changes. What if Hawke adopts him and later doesn't want him anymore? Hawke assures him that won't happen.

Hawke returns to Le Van to the McBride residence. And now Darren has some more news. A friend in the air force says that a plane is coming in with some remains of MIAs. One of them the caskets is that of St John Hawke. Hawke and Dominic somehow steal into the air force base and into the hangar. Hawke finds St John's casket but he says St John is not there. Archangel turns up as well. He had done his checks and there was something wrong--9 caskets arrived but the computer readout only showed 8 sets of remains listed. They open St John's casket. It contains 200 pounds of heroin! Obviously McBride and Carson had planned it all. They would smuggle the heroin into the US Air Force base in St John's casket and rely on Hawke to get it out. Hawke tells Archangel, they wanted a funeral, let's give them one.

Hawke sets up a trap for McBride and Carson and buries the casket in the mountains near his cabin. As predicted, McBride and Carson show up and start to dig the casket up. Of course, the casket no longer contains the heroin. The smugglers start to fall out with each other when Hawke arrive overhead in Airwolf. It is over, he tells them, give it up.

McBride and the others attempt to escape. McBride wants to hide in the woods. Carson thinks he and his henchmen stand a better chance in the air. He lifts off but finds himself pursued by Airwolf. They shoot at Airwolf with RPGs but fail to score hits. Hawke is about to respond but Carson as been so engrossed with his men firing at Airwolf that he flies his chopper into a hillside.

Now for McBride. He thinks he has gotten away but Airwolf finds him and traps him against the edge of a cliff. Hawke forces McBride to tell everything he knows about St John but McBride says he doesn't know anymore. Hawke must ask Carson--he spent time with St John in a hospital.

Over at Knightsbridge, Archangel confirms that Carson did spend a month with St John in a hospital. Hawke says it's the closest he had come to some answers, only, Carson had flown into a mountain. Minh turns up with Le Van. McBride had promised to marry her and bring her to the U.S. if she brought her nephew. But was her sister really married to St John? Minh says her sister had the photo of St John and the ring. Le Van is her sister's son. But Minh cannot know if Le Van's is St John's son or not.

Le Van asks Hawke if he would still love him even if it turned out he is not Hawke's nephew. Hawke promises "half pint" that he will always love him.

Story locations

Aircraft seen

  • Airwolf
  • Bell UH1-H - in Royal Thai Air Force markings.
  • Bell 206 JetRanger - N3187D. Used by Carson and his gang near the end of the episode.
  • Lockheed C-130 - seen taxying in at Clarke Air Base.
  • Fairchild C-123 Provider - used to transport servicemen remains from Clarke Air Base.

Firearms seen

  • Madsen M50 - General Rangavana, and some of Carson's gang at the beginning
  • AK-47 - General Rangavana's men
  • M-16 - honour guard when caskets are loaded onto C-130
  • Uzi - two airmen working in the pay of Carson
  • RPG-7 - Carson's men use it to engage Airwolf

Research notes

Cast

  • Jan-Michael Vincent as Stringfellow Hawke
  • Alex Cord as Michael Coldsmith Briggs III
  • Jean Bruce Scott as Caitlin O'Shannessy
  • Ernest Borgnine as Dominic Santini
  • Doug McClure as Darren McBride
  • Michael D. Roberts as Glen Carson
  • James Hong as General Rangavana
  • Julia Nickson as Minh Van McBride (as Julie Nickson)
  • Christie Claridge as Samantha
  • Roland Harrah III as Le Van 'Half-Pint' Hawke
  • George Gonzales as Jimmy
  • Nancy Williams as Teacher
  • Michael Beatrice as Freddie
  • Shawn Alexander Campbell as Mike
  • Justin Manask as Steve
  • Richard G. Camphuis as Airforce Officer (as Richard Camphuis)
  • Nick Dimitri (uncredited)
  • Robert Apisa as McBride and Carson Men (uncredited)
  • Deborah Ludwig Davis as Singer (voice) (uncredited)
  • Al Leong as General Rangavara Bandit Soldier (uncredited)

Gallery

References

  1. https://web.archive.org/web/20140803111902/http://series.airwolf.tv/episodes/ep45

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