This episode features one of Paul’s trademarks, taking notice of a lovely lady. When, at around :45, Paul follows Perry from the ring area of the circus tent into the performer’s dressing area, a “lovely lady” in very tight shorts passes by. Paul nearly twists his head off to look at her “assets.” Submitted by Kenmore, 11/10/2009.
Perry asks "was there anything about the act that struck you as unusual, some missing characteristic, something left out of the routine?" Yeah. It wasn't funny. I saw no evidence of "genius" in the routine. In fact, the entire episode laid an egg. Not up to the usual Perry standards. Lisa unlocking the cage is incredibly stupid, even for a drunk. And Perry asks if everyone knew that Jerry was afraid of the wild animals. Uh, isn't EVERYONE afraid of wild animals? And why would there be only one bullet hole in the top of the tent? When the husband and wife team shoot at the quarters, wouldn't the bullets continue traveling upward and make holes in the tent? And if not, if the bullets ricochet and go somewhere else, isn't that a bit dangerous? As Paul Drake noted above, the gun act is absurdly risky. And why is everyone swiping Della's popcorn? Get your own! This episode should've been named "TCOT Stinky Script." Submitted by scarter, 8/24/14
+ I agree with scarter - surely one of the more dopey episodes. However, I am a writer, and understand that new script ideas and motivations for doing in one's spouse, partner, stepfather don't write themselves -- one a week! Maybe the odd circus motif was already set up and available. JohnK, 4 October 2015 ++ Gloomy and claustrophobic. It's the only episode i started to watch a second time on DVD and bailed on it. Submitted by catyron, February 26th, 2021.
+++ At about the time this show aired, I was a boy of maybe 6 years, and strongly recall visiting, with my father and younger brother, a small-time traveling circus like the one in the episode. Even then I sensed that the whole thing was shady and downtrodden and depressing. This really was an odd choice of setting. JohnK, 20 October 2021
A clunker, vindicated only by some fine performances. Felix, Judd, and Tim surely are the glummest, least likely trio of clowns. Odd that this, one of the worst shows in the series, should immediately follow one of the best - “Wandering Widow”. Douglas Henderson is best remembered for his role in "The Manchurian Candidate" with Frank Sinatra. DOD 09/07/18
Another episode in which Perry enters his office via the law library door, which strikes me as odd because a.) it's the long way (from the hallway into the reception area, then into the law library, then into his office), and b.) he has no idea there's someone waiting in Della's office, so why the detour? It would have made more sense if he'd just entered by his private door to the back hall. Submitted by francis, 9/01/14.
In most episodes the law library is through a door to the right of that bust. And in at least one other episode, the door to the left of the sofa leads to a bathroom. Maybe Perry was freshening up? DOD 10/05/20
+ Is there an automatic door closer on that door? When Perry enters his office he leaves the door open. The door seems to stay in that position but a couple of seconds later we hear the door close. The next time we see the door it is closed. Was the mysterious "doorman" from episodes 12 and 30 here as well? Submitted by Wiseguy70005, 1/14/15.
Am I right in presuming that the authors of this episode want us to believe that Jerry Franklin could fire his loaded gun at the exact same instant that the clown Tim Durant fired his, so that no one - not even those standing next to his wheelchair - heard two separate shots? - Submitted by 10yearoldfan, 1/18/2012.
If you look closely, Franklin is sitting by himself. Then, when the Gilberts came up closer to him, he rolled his wheelchair closer to the action, and away from Mrs. Gilbert, probably to get a better line of sight to kill Curtis as well as getting further away from both of them.
So it's entirely possible that no one else heard Franklin's shot, or, if they did, they only thought it was an echo. From the perspective of the Gilberts, both shots came from in front of them, so, based on that, it would've very difficult for either of them to have separated the shots because both shots came from the same direction.
Except Jerry would have had to raise the gun to chest height - surely someone would have noticed. DOD 09/07/18
TCOT Inept Investigation Tragg and his men left the supposed murder weapon lying around at the circus, allowing Durant to fetch it later and throw it on the highway to frame Heidemann. What kind of police work is that? Oh, well. As others have commented, this is not PM at its best. It is one of my least favorite episodes, dark, muddled, unpleasant, full of miserable characters and unbelievable moments. And one of the unfunniest clown acts imaginable. Can't win 'em all! Submitted by JazzBaby, 9/1/2019.