WASP
WASP.jpg


Season : 7
Episode: 5
Directed by: Chris Fisher
Written by: Denise Thé
Production Number:
Airdate: November 1, 2009
Date of Crime: June 2, 1944
Previous: Soul
Next: Dead Heat


External Links
IMDB Site


Description

The team re-opens the 1944 case of a female pilot who was part of a civilian program to aid the U.S. Army Air Force during World War II. Meanwhile, Lilly fixates on her nemesis, Moe Kitchener.

Synopsis

In 1944, a farm pilot flies by, close to the ground, above a Delaware Air Force base. The plane lands and a woman named Vivian Lynn steps out to join a lineup of female recruits. They are informed that they will have a chance to be part of an all female squadron. The flight instructor, Captain James, addresses the pilots, but stops after he gets a message. The other recruits are impressed and ask Vivian if they can teach her to fly like she does. Later, Vivian is killed after her plane crashes into the water.

The show jumps to the present day. Rush meets with Kitchener outside a bank and threatens to ruin his chances to get a loan. Rush arrives at a lake and learns an environmental group found the body of Vivian Lynn, a member of the Women Airforce Sevice Pilots (WASPs). Stillman explains WASPs flew civilians during non-combat missions. Rush learns Vivian's plane was sabotaged, causing it to crash. Later, the team learns Vivian was declared missing after she was ordered to fly south from Delaware. They wonder why Vivian flew north to Philadelphia. Valens learns from his dad there is money missing from his bank account.

Valens and Rush meet with Iris, the squad leader of the WASPs. She tells the detectives that Vivian was a great pilot and didn’t believe the official story that she crashed due to bad weather. Iris says there was a rumor that Vivian had a boyfriend in Manhattan and that she had a reputation of rubbing people the wrong way. Iris remembers when the WASP recruits were put into a high pressure, low oxygen chamber. The pilots took turns attempting to write their name on a chalkboard to test their reaction, but Vivian was the only one able to do it. Iris says Vivian wanted to succeed more than she wanted to make friends. Iris gives the team her book which shows them an accurate record of the WASP service career.

Vera and Jeffries meet with Vivian’s bunkmate, Betty Jo Henders, who tells them she last saw Vivian two days before she disappeared. She remembers when the WASP team met at the social club called the Snake Pit. A pilot called Wolf asked Vivian if he could show her how to play darts. He tried to make a move and kiss her, but she slapped him. Betty Jo tells Vera and that Wolf didn’t like to take no for an answer. Jeffries tells Rush that Wolf’s real name is Herbert James and he is the brother of the WASP flight instructor. They see Herbert had access to Vivian’s plane and wonder if he sabotaged it.

Stillman tells Rush that Kitchener filed a complaint against her that is now being reviewed by Internal Affairs. He explains the whole division is under scrutiny because Deputy Police Commissioner Pat Doherty doesn’t like them.

The team brings Herbert to the station and inform him that they found Vivian’s body. They tell him they heard he was angry with her. Herbert remembers when his brother Frank told him Vivian was going to teach him how to fly the B-52. He says Lynn was a good teacher and kept her cool unlike the other WASP pilots. Herbert says Frank had a thing for Vivian. Valens tells Rush that there was another case where a pilot named Edna Reed was killed in a plane crash before Vivian died. Valens meets with his mom outside of the doctor’s office and asks her if she is sick. She says she has a bad knee, but Valens doesn’t believe her. She asks him to trust her.

Rush meets with Frank who admits he had a relationship with Vivian, but kept it quiet. He says Vivian was an excellent navigator who the other pilots followed. Frank remembers meeting with her in a hanger that held a new jet plane. He told her the Army Air Force would let a pilot with a perfect score fly the plane. Betty Jo arrived angry and told Vivian she knew she took ration books she stole herself. Vivian said that stealing the ration books is like stealing bullets from soldiers. Frank explains that Betty Jo could have been found guilty of treason for war profiteering. The detectives bring Betty Jo to the station and tell her they know she was given ration books from her brother who worked at a military incinerator. She remembers when Vivian gave Edna Reed a pep talk. Vivian said her father worked on a B-17 where he was killed. Betty Jo says hearing Vivian's family story made her reconsider and stop selling the ration books. Betty Jo says she regrets that Vivian didn’t fly the new jet; another pilot, Louise Patterson, was the first woman to fly it.

Valens and Rush meet with Louise. They ask her if she wanted to get rid of Vivian since she was her competition to fly the jet. Louise remembers when Edna died when her plane crashed. Vivian said she can’t believe Edna crashed since she instructed her. Afterwards, the pilots bonded while singing the Airforce song. Valens tells Stillman that the Army reported that Edna’s plane crashed due to a mechanical failure but he has doubts since the maintenance logs show the plane was cleaned two days prior. Valens wonders if someone put sugar in Edna’s fuel tank to clog it but sugar would be hard to come by due to war rationing. Stillman explains that soldiers would be able to buy sugar and learns that Frank James ordered sugar from the base PX before the accident.

Meanwhile, Kitchener pulls up to Rush after she gets in her car. She tells him to back off and readies her gun. The more she pushes, Kitchener says, the more she will lose. Vera reports that he believes Vivian was flying north for an official assignment. Stillman meets with Frank and tells him they know he was forced to be an instructor instead of fighting on the line. He asks him if he was trying to scare the WASP pilots into quitting. Rush shows Frank a log showing he bought a large amount of sugar that could have been used to sabotage Edna’s flight. Frank denies ordering the sugar. He remembers when Vivian told him she checked the maintenance log for Edna's plane which was clean. Vivian said she saw Herbert at the hanger and suspects he sabotaged Edna's plane. Frank told her he doesn’t want to bust his own brother. He said even though he loved her, accidents happen. Frank says he confronted Herbert about the sabotage, but he denied it.

The detectives tell Herbert that Frank is going to be arrested. Herbert confesses he sabotaged Edna’s plane, but thought she would bail out. He explains he never meant to hurt anyone. He says he begged Vivian not to report him, but she said she already filed a report. He waited for the MPs to arrest him, but they never came. The detectives bring in Iris and tell her they know the report Vivian filed never went past her to her superior officers. Rush tells Iris she read her book and knows she believes Vivian was going to fly to meet her boyfriend. Rush is skeptical since it appears Vivian was on route to a nearby base. Rush says she saw her flight schedule which was filed only a few days after Vivian disappeared. Rush suspects Iris knew she was never coming back since Vivian was not on the flight schedule. Iris remembers when Vivian realized she didn’t file the report. If the military found out that men were sabotaging them, they would shut the WASPs down. Vivian told Iris the truth must be heard since Edna was murdered. Iris finally agreed and ordered her to fly north to inform a general about what happened. After Vivian went to pack, Iris sabotaged her plane. Iris and Herbert are arrested for murder.

Cast

Main Cast

Guest Cast

And

Co-Starring

Notes

  • Tracie Thoms does not appear in this episode.
  • There is a final blurb stating that on July 1, 2009, the ladies of the WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots) were honored with the Congressional Gold Medal by Congress and President Obama for service to the nation during World War II.
  • Louise Patterson is said to have been the first woman to break the sound barrier. In real life, that distinction belonged to Jacqueline Cochran (1906-1980), who was in fact instrumental in the formation of the WASPs.

Music

  • Captain Robert MacArthur Crawford "The U.S. Air Force"
  • Bing Crosby & the Andrews Sisters "Pistol Packin' Mama"
  • Louis Prima "Sing, Sing, Sing (With a Swing)"
  • Billie Holiday "You Go to My Head"
  • Martha Tilton "I'll Walk Alone"

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