Colditz (TV Series) - Episode Summaries - Season 2

Season 2

# Title Writer Original airdate Series No.
01 "Arrival of a Hero" N.J. Crisp 7 January 1974 (1974-01-07) #2.01
Ulmann is still seething over the "home-run" by Pat Grant and Phil Carrington, and interrogates Dick Player ceaselessly, without success. Meanwhile, the Kommandant is advised that he will have a new second-in-command, Major Horst Mohn, who arrives amidst the prisoners' jubilation over the success of their two colleagues. Mohn informs the Kommandant that he has been sent from the Führer's personal staff after having received both decorations for his aviation exploits and a severe wound in the stomach from a Russian bayonet. He also indicates that Hitler was informed of the successful escape attempt and insists that security be tightened up. Mohn then proceeds to antagonise the prisoners one by one, particularly Carter, whose intimate letters to Cathy he reads with great interest. Because of the friction created, the Kommandant becomes determined that Mohn should be removed from Colditz.
02 "Ghosts" John Brason 14 January 1974 (1974-01-14) #2.02
Player is interrogated by the new escape officer, Carter, who discovers that the main impediment to escapes is that the Germans are alerted to the escapes too quickly. Carter attempts to devise a strategy of covering escapes by ensuring appel counts remain the same. He does this by faking escapes, and hiding the officers concerned in a hole somewhere in the camp, to be used on appels after real escapes. The spot he chooses is the hole under the pulpit in the chapel. Unfortunately for the escape team, and for the dismayed British Padre, the Kommandant decides to close the chapel due to its use in escape attempts. This traps Player and Brent in the pulpit without provisions, and the British Medical Officer gives Carter only two days to get them out.
03 "Odd Man In" Arden Winch 21 January 1974 (1974-01-21) #2.03
The British contingent is upset at the arrival of a black sheep in their midst: Pilot Officer Lawrence Page, an antisocial Royal Air Force prisoner who does not seem to be able to get along with anyone, and behaves oddly at his first appel. He is questioned by another RAF officer, Jimmy Walker at the request of Simon Carter, and discovers inaccuracies in Page's story, making it obvious he is not really an RAF officer. Suspected of being a German stool pigeon, he is interviewed privately by Colonel Preston and Carter, whereupon Page reveals his true identity i.e. that he is an SOE agent. Carter then has the task of confirming this with the help of his wife back in London, using coded messages in his letters to her. Carter and Preston are sworn to secrecy whilst this process is going on. Walker, who still believes that Page is a German spy becomes impatient and starts a fight with Page. Unfortunately for Walker, Page has been trained to kill and maim without hesitation, and Walker ends up with badly gouged eyes. Subsequently, Carter is able to confirm Page's identity as an SOE agent. However, the many dangerous missions Page has experienced have left him a deeply embittered and damaged person who simply wishes to be left alone. Page's dilemma is that he is in a no-win situation i.e. if he is unmasked by the Germans in Colditz then he will definitely be shot as a spy, whereas if he escapes he will be obliged to resume his SOE activities - with a high risk of being captured, tortured by the Gestapo and then executed. As a result, Page wishes to spend the rest of the war in Colditz disguised as a POW. This is because (ironically) being a prisoner is the only way he can escape.
04 "The Guests" Troy Kennedy-Martin 28 January 1974 (1974-01-28) #2.04
A Hauptsturmführer of the SD arrives at the Colditz town jail with three British commandos. He intends to keep this fact a secret, but it leaks both to Colonel Preston and the Kommandant. Preston, aware of Hitler's order that all commandos are to be shot, pressures the Kommandant to take the commandos under his jurisdiction. He tries, but the SD overrules him. In an unusual bout of helpfulness, Mohn suggests to the Kommandant that he could use his high connections to have the commandos transferred to the castle. This is done, but Mohn has ulterior motives. He predicts correctly that the British contingent would attempt to help the commandos escape, and use their best escape plan, the one used by Pat Grant and Phil Carrington to make their home run. Ulmann, anxious to rectify his embarrassment, goes along with Mohn's plan to trap the prisoners while the Kommandant is away.
05 "Frogs in the Well" Thom Keyes 4 February 1974 (1974-02-04) #2.05
The British discover a hopeful escape route through the boarded up camp theatre. Despite protest from Mohn, the Kommandant relents to Colonel Preston's request to have the theatre, which was used for an escape the previous year, reopened. Ulmann is enthusiastic about the idea, hoping to catch the prisoners in the act of plotting to escape. While the prisoners manage to get around Ulmann's heightened security measures, they encounter an unforeseen problem when the French have the same idea of using the safe route out of the theatre.
06 "Ace in the Hole" David Ambrose 11 February 1974 (1974-02-11) #2.06
Carter's hopes are raised by the arrival of Squadron Leader Tony Shaw, a decorated RAF hero. Ulmann is convinced that the celebrity prisoner will be trouble. However, Shaw appears far more interested in pursuing his pre-war role as a professor of literature, quickly rejuvenating the British officer's education classes - much to the joy of the pacificist-leaning librarian. Disappointed, Carter tries to shame Shaw into taking more of a part in the escape plans, but to no avail. But when Shaw discovers a closed off room in the attic adjacent to the library and conceives of the audacious plan to build and fly a glider out of the roof of the castle, Shaw snaps into action with the full backing of the SBO. The librarian is dismayed to find his classes used as mere cover for the escapers' activities - relegated again.
07 "French Leave" Ken Hughes 18 February 1974 (1974-02-18) #2.07
Irritated at having to receive their news from the French, who have not only one, but two wireless units, Carter is asked to request one of them for the British. The request is refused by the stereotypically romantic and womanising Captain André Vaillant. He expresses frustration about being kept as a prisoner of war despite the fact that France is no longer at war with Germany. He is ironically forced to eat his words when Mohn triumphantly announces to the French contingent that, since they are no longer prisoners of war, they are being moved to a labour camp in Poland. Meanwhile, the pastor of Colditz town makes a request to the Kommandant for the prisoners' choir to sing at the town church during the Bishop of Leipzig's visit. The Kommandant reluctantly agrees. As the rest of the French contingent resign themselves to their fate, Vaillant takes this unique opportunity to concoct an escape with the help of a sympathetic and beautiful young German girl, whom he seduces.
08 "The Gambler" N.J. Crisp 25 February 1974 (1974-02-25) #2.08
This episode sees the arrival of Flt Lt Jack Collins. He is a con man and gambler that cheats. He uses his card skills to pull Captain George Brent into betting everything including his house and losing it. He also plays cards with a German guard and manages to take him for enough that the guard is forced to help Collins get a metal ID tag for civilian workers in the castle.
Collins wants no help from the rest of the British Officers and seeks his own escape methods. He feels that if he can get out he will make it based on bis pre-war knowledge of Germany, fluent German and the fact that some his former clients in Germany were Jews that were hiding that fact.
09 "Senior American Officer" Ivan Moffat 4 March 1974 (1974-03-04) #2.09
The lone American Officer in the camp gets a thrill when three other Americans arrive in the camp. One of them turns out to be Phil Carrington, now promoted to Major and sporting a bushy beard. The senior is Colonel Dodd. The third is a Captain. These three are taken to solitary confinement and, at Mohn's urging, given preferential treatment to arouse the suspicions of the British. It is gradually revealed that the Gestapo have an interest in these three, who failed to reveal their connections to the Hungarian resistance movement under interrogation. To allay suspicions, Colonel Preston has Colonel Dodd explain more or less what the three Americans were doing in Hungary, and it turns out that they were, indeed, involved with trying to make contact with the Hungarian free government. Preston and Carrington realise, as the story is being told, that they are under surveillance, and devise a plan to flush out the eavesdropper.
10 "Very Important Person" Ivan Moffat 11 March 1974 (1974-03-11) #2.10
The Prominente, or famous prisoners, of the camp are to be at last used in their capacity as hostages for Hitler and his entourage who are trapped in the encirclement of Berlin. To accommodate this requirement, and to ensure there is no more trouble with escaping prisoners, Obergruppenführer Gottlob Berger of the Waffen-SS is put in charge of all prisoners of war. He pays an unannounced visit to the Kommandant to explain the new situation and demand that the Prominente be moved out of Colditz the next morning. The Kommandant, fearing for his life and the lives of the other prisoners, requests that Colonel Preston and Major Carrington do their best to quell the upset this will cause. The situation is further complicated when they discover that their colleague is the son of an American ambassador and thus classified as Prominente. The bedridden Colonel Dodd agrees to the plan of two British officers to help the ambassador's son escape.
11 "Chameleon" Robert Muller 18 March 1974 (1974-03-18) #2.11
Major Mohn is left in charge of the camp as the Kommandant is called away to yet another meeting. He is unsympathetic to Colonel Preston's requests for more rations or the ability to keep animals for sustenance. On a visit to a pub in the town, he meets with a woman named Ana, apparently an old friend. She shows him her brother, recently arrived from the front through Dresden. The brother warns Mohn that he could meet a sticky end because of his involvement with the party (which is apparently deep, since he served on Hitler's staff and reveals he knows about the Final Solution). While initially defiant, Mohn sees the writing on the wall and panics, returning to the camp and making cringeworthy attempts to endear himself to the prisoners. He simultaneously burns every bridge by blackmailing both Ulmann and the Kommandant, and the latter relieves him of all duty. When his last lifeline, Ana, rejects his plea for help since she is being watched, he makes his last bid for freedom prisoner-style.
12 "Death Sentence" N.J. Crisp 25 March 1974 (1974-03-25) #2.12
Mohn's legacy lives on in Colditz in the form of the death sentence hanging over Carrington's head for having threatened Mohn's life in "Very Important Person." Colonel Dodd and Colonel Preston refuse to cooperate with the Kommandant until he is reprieved. Meanwhile, the Kommandant gives an open invitation to his officers to bring their wives and families into the safety of the castle as the American tanks approach. His wife joins him, but Ulmann's is unable. Obergruppenführer Berger takes military control of Colditz's region, making escapes a very dangerous proposition with the countryside full of SS troops. Nevertheless, Squadron Leader Tony Shaw, the maker of the Colditz glider is determined to see it fly, and opts to fly Carrington out before he is executed. Terrible news causes the Kommandant to gain a new perspective on his situation, and new courage.
13 "Liberation" Ivan Moffat 1 April 1974 (1974-04-01) #2.13
The most dangerous time for the prisoners begins, as they await the order from the Nazi government that they are to be shot. Fortunately, the Kommandant comes to Colonel Preston with a plea for a guarantee that he and his men will be delivered to the American liberation forces, and saved from the Russians. Colonel Preston and Colonel Dodd agree on condition that command of the camp is immediately relinquished to them. The Kommandant reluctantly complies, and Colonel Preston takes command of the camp. With roles reversed, the SBO coordinates the smooth delivery of Colditz and its German guard into Allied hands.

Read more about this topic:  Colditz (TV Series), Episode Summaries

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