Touched by an Angel

Episode 317: “Angel Of Death”

Episode 317: “Angel Of Death”
Original Air Date: February 9, 1997

Written by: George Taweel & Rob Loos
Directed by: Tim Van Patten
Produced by:

Martha Williamson
Jon Andersen<
R.J. Visciglia, Jr.

Guest Cast:
Celeste  Hudson Lieck 
Eric Weiss  Corbin Bernsen 
Councilman Hinkley David Leisure 
Estelle  Jeanne Cooper 
Young Estelle  Heather McAdam 

 

Tess instructs Celeste, an angel new to human form, and takes her to a Las Vegas showroom to see their assignment–Eric Weiss, an illusionist who calls himself the “angel of death.” The supervisor angel volunteers her jittery charge to participate in his act, but Tess is dismayed when Celeste… and her dog vanish. On a rampage, Eric fires his assistant and yells at his agent, Andrew, who is hard pressed to find another magician’s assistant. Tess cuts Monica’s vacation short to fill that position.

As the case progresses, the angels realize that Eric’s death wish is not merely an extension of his stage routine. The pieces start to come together after he reluctantly agrees to perform in Appleton, Wisconsin, his hometown and also the hometown of Harry Houdini. There he visits his mother, an inpatient in a psychiatric hospital. She asks Danny–Eric’s real name–if he has seen his brother, Peter. He recalls a tragic game of hide- and-seek before abruptly ending his visit. Meanwhile, Monica unwittingly discovers Celeste but fails to convince the wayward angel to turn herself in. During a performance, Eric becomes paralyzed with fear upon seeing his doppelganger in the audience. Her voice returns him to reality, but the illusionist is shaken, convinced that he saw the ghost of his dead, twin brother.

Despite Andrew’s and Monica’s concern, Eric decides to attempt the most dangerous escape of his career, which involves being locked in a refrigerator and lowered to the bottom of a pool. Several minutes elapse until Eric’s brother, Pete steps forward, and Tess orders the crane operator to raise the refrigerator out of the pool. Upon seeing his twin, Eric bolts through the crowd and eventually returns to the junkyard where his brother “died.” Celeste appears and reveals herself to the distraught entertainer. Monica joins the apprentice angel, and the pair urge him to stop playing hide-and-seek with his life. Confronting the painful memory of his brother being trapped in a refrigerator, Eric learns that Pete did not die but was kidnapped by their scornful father. The brothers share an emotional reunion, and Celeste has successfully participated in her first case.

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