Hello Zollie
Series: Hogan's Heroes
Episode: Hello, Zolle
Original Airdate: January 21, 1966
Production Number: 5784-17
Written by: David Chandler & Jack H. Robinson
Directed by: Gene Reynolds
Produced by: Edward H. Feldman & Bernard Fein

Regular Edit

Prisoners Edit

Camp Personnel Edit

Semi-Regulars Edit


Guest Stars Edit

Synopsis Edit

Hogan tries to detain a German general at camp for 24 hours, so that the Allies can amass troops. Things get complicated when a Gestapo officer comes determined to find something wrong with Stalag 13.

Plot Details Edit

The episode opens with Schultz leading the camp guards in confining everyone to barracks. As Schultz finishes with Barracks 2 and leaves, LeBeau leads the others in promptly setting up the sink periscope to see what's going on that they're not supposed to see. A German staff car pulls through the main gate and parks in front of the kommandantur. Out of it steps a Wehrmacht Major-General - a middle-aged, imposing figure with a typically stern Prussian face. His demeanor instantly changes, though, once Klink steps out onto the porch and greets him. The two appear glad to see each other and exchange fond embraces. When Carter asks LeBeau what's going on, Lebeau answers disgustedly, "They're dancing."

Klink's guest turns out to be an old schoolchum of his, General Hans Stofle, now the most brilliant tactician in the German Army. As Klink and his guest enjoy their reunion with cigars and drinks, the general teases his host over the fact that while he has risen up in the ranks, Klink is still a colonel. Klink is momentarily irked at his, but when Stofle proposes bringing him back into combat duty, the Kommandant quickly insists he is needed at Stalag 13, where his "iron discipline" is much needed. As Hogan and his men listen through their bugging device in Klink's office, they learn that with the reassignment of Field Marshal Rommel to the West Wall, Stofle is now the commander of the legendary Afrika Korps. As far as anyone knows - leastways as far as the Allies are concerned - Stofle is still in North Africa leading his troops. His presence intrigues Hogan, who quickly informs London of the situation. London is as surprised as the Unsung Heroes, but wastes no time in acting on this valuable piece of intel. They are planning to attack the Africa Korps at once. With Stofle gone, they will be leaderless, and it will be only a matter of time before they will be defeated. Hogan's job, and that of his men, is to keep Stofle from leaving Stalag 13 as long as possible. When Hogan sarcastically asks London how he's going to pull this off, London responds that he's on his own.

Hogan's first impulse is to nab Stofle in broad daylight while pretending to take him on a guided tour of the camp. With Carter and Newkirk keeping Schultz busy, the threesome of Hogan, LeBeau, and Kinch sneak over to the general's car - inside of which they believe he is taking a nap. Much to their surprise, the back seat occupant turns out to be a beautiful young girl - Stofle's current girlfriend. About the same time, they hear police sirens approaching the camp. "Excuse us, coming through!" Hogan announces as he and his men dash through the back of the car in front of the startled girl, using it for cover so they won't be seen. The girl looks back at the main gate to see that a car full of SS men is about to be waved through. She panics and races into the Kommandantur. Meanwhile, inside Klink's office, Stofle too has panicked at the arrival of the SS. His little vacation from North Africa is supposed to be secret. Having the SS find him at Stalag 13, especially with a young woman, would raise a lot of awkward questions he is not prepared to answer. Klink hurriedly rushes them into his own guest quarters through his little-used office entrance, then nervously heads outside to receive his unwelcome guests.

A small, arrogant man with round glasses and a Charlie Chaplin moustache is standing smartly in front of three uniformed SS enlisted men. The man is dressed in the typical black trench coat and fedora of the Gestapo. Hogan trots up and attempts at once to run interference by smooth-talking the man, who seems quietly amused. Once Klink appears, the man informs the camp commandant that he is Major Zolle, and he has come to Stalag 13 on a special assignment. "There is something strange about this camp," he says with an evil smile. "I know all about you," he says, looking at Klink, "and I know all about you," he says, looking at Hogan. He then goes on to tell them that the Gestapo has amassed quite a file on Stalag 13 and the events that have been taking place around the camp. He has been sent here with his own team and the latest in German technology to get to the bottom of the mystery. "We will find something wrong," he assures them. "If something looks too perfect, watch out." Klink reacts to Zolle as one might expect. He promptly dashes for his office at the first excuse and hides there, fearing for his career and his immediate future - even though they don't have anything on him. Not that it matters, as he knows all too well, for if the Gestapo wanted to arrest him they would invent their own charges. Hogan, on the other hand, goes into action at once. The last thing he needs at Stalag 13 is a zealous Gestapo agent trying to tear down his operation. He quickly confers with both the Unsung Heroes and the Barracks 3 gang as to what to do. They'll have to wing it - there isn't time to properly plan a course of action - but desperation is Hogan's specialty.

Hogan's men go to work on Zolle and his team at once. Kinch and one of the Barracks 3 gang trick Zolle and Schultz (who has been drafted to assist him) into mistaking a buried waterline for an escape tunnel. As soon as Zolle's shovel breaks the pipe, the prisoners turn on the water - spraying and thoroughly drenching Zolle in the process. Next, Carter and Newkirk pretend to help Zolle's men search the upstairs of the camp's maintenance storage building, but in truth have led them straight into a stack of boxes rigged to fall on them. As the helpless SS men are knocked down, Carter and Newkirk grab all of their special gear and high-tail it out the door. The SS men are too embarrased by what's happened to face Major Zolle, and decide to hide out for a while before reporting in and claiming they found nothing. Unknown to them, however, Major Zolle is directly below them in the tool and wire storage room. His equipment senses movement above, and he breaks through the ceiling of the room, thinking he has found another "escape tunnel" of the prisoners. One of his own men promptly clubs him with a 2x4, mistaking him for a prisoner, and Zolle is knocked senseless.

In the meantime, while Hogan's men keep Zolle and his team busy, Hogan and LeBeau prepare to abduct General Stofle and haul him away to England - thus preventing him from ever helping the Afrika Korps again. Hogan has talked LeBeau into catering meals for Stofle and his girlfriend, who are still hiding out in Klink's quarters. LeBeau uses this to slip a mickey into a glass of champagne meant for Stofle, but a lover's embrace results in the glasses beng switched, and Stofle's girlfriend gets knocked out instead. "Sleep! That's all she ever does!" Stofle roars later, as he fumes at having to continue to hide out while Zolle's men are searching the camp. Hogan suggests that if Stofle disguised himself as one of the prisoners, he could move around the camp unnoticed, slip into the back of Klink's car, and ride out of camp. The idea is insane, but by this time Stofle is so frustrated that he's ready to try anything. The obliging Hogan has LeBeau measure the German general for an American bomber crew uniform, and it is not long before there is an extra prisoner at Stalag 13 ....

Some time later, an enraged Major Zolle calls a roll call of the entire stalag. All of the prisoners are mustered out and made to stand at attention, as Zolle (still nursing his bandaged head) threatens them with torture unless someone tells him what's going on at the camp. As he decides which of the prisoners he will "interrogate" first, Hogan calls Schultz over. He tells the nervous sergeant that there's a "defector" trying to escape in Klink's staff car. Schultz looks to where Hogan is looking, and he sees what appears to be an American POW slipping into the back of Klink's staff car - with Klink standing there and apparently failing to notice him! Schultz yells for the "defector" to halt and races to the staff car, with Zolle and his men in hot pursuit. They get there just as Schultz is dragging a surprised and angry Stofle out of the car. Stofle indignantly claims that he is a German general, but the uniform he is wearing says otherwise. Zolle promptly arrests him and has him dragged away by his men - with both Klink and Hogan claiming to have never heard of or seen the man. As the sounds of the protesting Stofle fade in the distance, Klink looks at Hogan in disgust. "You are a diabolical man," he almost hisses. Hogan smiles blithely. "Yes," he says, "I know."

Later, after the Gestapo leave Stalag 13 with their prisoner, Klink berates Hogan and threatens to have him locked up in the cooler for what he did. Hogan says he'd be proud to serve his time. "The Allies have started a big offensive in the desert!" Klink moans. With Stofle gone, the Afrika Korps has no real leadership and is being driven back with heavy losses. Hogan points out, and correctly, that had Stofle gotten back to his command then he would have acted to have Klink transferred to a combat assignment. He praises Klink's supposed tactical skill in getting the Gestapo to leave the camp, and relieve him of the headache of Stofle in the process. Klink is so elated at his "success" that he uncharacteristally offers Hogan one of his own cigars - and even lights it for him.

Story Notes Edit

  • This is the seventeenth produced episode of the series, but is the nineteenth episode to be shown on television.
  • The story's title is a pun on the Broadway musical, Hello, Dolly!.
  • Although this is never stated overtly in the episode, it can be implied that Klink arranged for Stofle's secret vacation from North Africa in an effort to curry favor with his old friend. Had the vacation worked out, Stofle in turn might have helped Klink in getting his own ever-sought-after promotion to general.
  • According to Klink, Stofle was quite the ladies man during their days "at university" (high school, in Germany).
  • Klink's "university" (high school) nickname, Putzi, is given by Stofle in this episode. Stofle in turn was called "Hansie" by Klink. (Some have conjectured that Putzi may have in fact been Klink's middle name, but there is no evidence to support this.)
  • Klink reminisces about his dueling scar that Stofle accidentally gave him. This is never seen on screen, but the way Klink talks about it implies that it's someplace where he wouldn't want it to be seen.
  • When Klink helps General Stofle and his girlfriend hide from Zolle and his men, he ushers them to his quarters through a door in his inner office. This establishes that the kommandantur building houses both Klink's inner and outer office and his personal quarters. This layout also corresponds fairly well with the kommandantur exteriors and dimensions as seen on screen. The producers apparently had second thoughts about this special door, though. It is rarely used again, and later in the series it appears to have been walled over (i.e. removed entirely).
  • In this particular episode, Klink's decanter in his office is filled with cognac. Klink seems to have a thing for various types of French liquor, in keeping with his expensive tastes.
  • Take note of Schultz's helmet, with its half-missing insignia. You will see him wear this particular helmet in many episodes of this season. Colonel Crittendon will wind up wearing it later on, when wearing one of Schultz's old uniforms as a disguise in Crittendon's Commandos.
  • This is the only time we see the inside of Stalag 13's camp maintenance building. We never see the outside; existing sets were used for the first floor's tool and materials storage (the armory) and the second floor storage area (the generic indoor set commonly used for the rec hall and other barracks). There were no two-story buildings on the actual filming lot. When Zolle pokes his head up through the "floor" of the second story storage area, he's actually standing inside the faux tunnel that was part of the generic set (see Reservations Are Required, I Look Better in Basic Black, et al).
  • We never find out what happened to Stofle's girlfriend.

Background Trivia Edit

Timeline Notes and Speculations Edit

Quotes Edit

  • Klink - Why are you here? You should have let me know you were coming!
  • Zolle (calm tone, evil grin) - The Gestapo warns no one.

  • Zolle - There is something strange about this camp.
  • Klink (indignant) - There is nothing strange about this camp! There's been no complaint from Berlin!
  • Zolle (calm tone, evil grin) - Why have they not complained?
  • Klink (still indignant) - Bec--
  • Zolle (cuts him off) - Because Berlin cannot be trusted either.
  • Klink (shocked) - Berlin cannot be trusted?! But what about General Burkhalter?
  • Zolle (accusing tone, evil grin) - What about General Burkhalter?
  • Klink (oblivious) - He personally commended Stalag 13. No incidents, no escapes--
  • Zolle (smiling, cuts him off) - Perhaps General Burkhalter cannot be trusted. What do you say to that?
  • Klink (really shocked, speaking slow) - General Burkhalter?
  • Zolle (wicked grin) - I trust no one. Not you, not my mother.
  • Klink (appalled) - Not your mother? (stiffens) Sir, I assure you I run a model camp!
  • Zolle (false assurance) - We will find something wrong, believe me. I always say, "If a thing sounds too perfect, watch out."

  • Zolle - This (flashlight) casts a beam so powerful it can find a prisoner a thousand yards away.

(Zolle swings around the beam as he talks, until it is shining directly in Klink's face)

  • Klink (fawning while squinting) - Sir, my prisoners are NEVER that far away.
  • Zolle (continuing) - Weighted, it can break a skull like this.

Zolle abruptly swings it down, stopping it within an inch or two of Klink's face. Klink starts, then stares at the flashlight held so close to his cheek)

  • Zolle (false sympathy) - Ooohh, I see you find discipline distasteful, eh kommandant? I shall put that in my report.

(Zolle puts the flashlight down. Klink is relieved at that, but still obviously nervous)

  • Klink (fawning) - Sir, I ADMIRE discipline!
  • Zolle (wicked grin) - How fortunate ... if you should ever have to be on the receiving end.

  • Klink - At the university we were best friends!
  • Hogan - And as his (Stofle's) best friend you'd be implicate
  • Klink (abruptly) - I hardly know him.

  • Zolle - You seem to be very nervous, colonel.
  • Klink (false bravado) - Me? Nervous?! Why should I be nervous?
  • Zolle (quietly) - That's a very good question.

Stofle, on Klink

  • Stofle - He knows how to live, this Klink. Not how to die - but how to live.

Zolle, after his every effort to search Stalag 13 is thwarted by the Unsung Heroes.

  • Zolle - I assure you prisoners that this comedy is over!

Another great ironic line from SS Major Zolle

  • Zolle - For the truth there is always time.

Klink, on Hogan

  • Klink - There is something diabolical about you.

Bloopers Edit

External links Edit

Previous episode:
The Gold Rush
Next episode:
It Takes a Thief... Sometimes