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» » The F.B.I. How to Murder an Iron Horse (1965–1974)

Short summary

A disturbed young man blows up a freight train. He is now blackmailing the railroad -- he'll do the same to a passenger train unless he is paid $100,000.

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  • comment
    • Author: Darkraven
    "How to Murder an Iron Horse" is a most unusual episode of "The FBI" because it features a villain who is clearly mentally ill...as well as evil. Howdy Collier is a disturbed young man. To say he has daddy issues is putting it very mildly!! His father apparently never had time for him and was emotionally stunted. Instead, the father spent all his free time in the basement playing with his train layout. Now, the father has long since died and Howdy has serious train issues (Freud would have LOVED this plot)....he wants to destroy them! Unlike Gomez from "The Addams Family", Howdy not only likes blowing up his dad's trains...but real ones!!

    In the opening scene, you see Howdy climbing on the rocks around some rural train tracks. As the freight train passes, he lowers a bomb into one of the cars. Moments later, he hits a detonator and the train goes up in smoke! Next, he sends an extortion letter to the railroad....promising to blow up a passender train unless they pay him $100,000. What they don't realize is that regardless of whether they pay or not, he's gonna blow up that train!

    Seeing Howdy writhing about and going through some histrionics is quite entertaining....and some might think it's a bit silly. But I really liked the weird psychological angle of this story and think it's well worth your time.
  • Episode cast overview:
    Efrem Zimbalist Jr. Efrem Zimbalist Jr. - Inspector Lewis Erskine
    Philip Abbott Philip Abbott - Arthur Ward
    Stephen Brooks Stephen Brooks - Special Agent Jim Rhodes
    Claude Akins Claude Akins - Ben Gambriella
    David Macklin David Macklin - Howdy Collier
    Louise Latham Louise Latham - Mrs. Collier
    Paul Fix Paul Fix - Willard Oberley
    Len Wayland Len Wayland - Vic Roberts
    Robert Knapp Robert Knapp - First Special Agent
    Alex Gerry Alex Gerry - Chairman
    Karl Held Karl Held - Second Special Agent
    Noah Keen Noah Keen - Examiner
    Nick Nicholson Nick Nicholson
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