30 January 2000 | BrianG
"Who says I'm dumb?"
Although it only ran for two seasons, "F Troop" was a consistently hilarious western spoof that should have stayed on much longer. It didn't just stick to satirizing westerns--the show managed to throw in vampires (Vincent Price showed up in one episode), James Bond-ish secret agents (Pat Harrington as "Agent B. Wise"), rock bands (Agarn leaves the army to manage a group called The Bedbugs) and just about anything else they could think of. The show was crammed with memorable characters: Ken Berry's well intentioned but bumbling Capt. Parmenter, Forrest Tucker's scheming capitalist Sgt. O'Rourke, Larry Storch's loyal but not particularly bright Cpl. Agarn, Joe Brooks' sight-impaired lookout Cpl. Vanderbilt. The real find, though, was Frank DeKova as Chief Wild Eagle. DeKova parlayed his sinister, menacing appearance into a career of playing cold-hearted killers and various psychos. As conniving Chief Wild Eagle, though, he showed a flair for comed y that was wholly unexpected. Although he went over the top sometimes, he was consistently fun to watch, and you really looked forward to his appearances. There were some truly funny running gags (Parmenter's "Please Jane, not in front of the men" whenever Jane tried to put the moves on him; directions to Fort Courage that always went, "Make a left at the rock that looks like a bear, then a right at the bear that looks like a rock"), but the one that everyone remembers is when O'Rourke would say to Agan, "I don't know why everybody says you're so dumb", and then ten minutes later, in the middle of another scene, Agarn would turn to O'Rourke and say, "Who says I'm dumb?" A truly funny show that should have lasted longer than it did.
P.S. There's a blooper reel in circulation that has about 10 minutes of "F Troop" outtakes on it. If you ever come across it, snap it up. It's even funnier (and far dirtier!) than the stuff that made it into the show.