Standing Room Only
Series: Hogan's Heroes
Episode: Standing Room Only
Original Airdate: February 20, 1970
Production Number: 5784-141
Written by: Laurence Marks
Directed by: Jerry London
Produced by: Edward H. Feldman, William A. Calihan & Jerry London

Regular Edit

Prisoners Edit

Camp Personnel Edit

Semi-Regulars Edit

Guest Stars Edit

Synopsis Edit

Hogan tries to save Klink from an officer who plans on turning him in for not having balanced his books.

Plot Details Edit

As the episode opens, a slender, ginger-haired beauty is exulting in the opulence of Klink's quarters and the elegant selection of caviar and champagne before her. Klink, sporting his red smoking jacket and white cravat, eagerly agrees and offers her a toast. He reminds her that this is their anniversary - it has now been a month since they started dating. He gives her an expensive-looking jade necklace as an anniversary present. Sophie seems delighted with the necklace, but less so with Klink's attempt at romantic small talk ("Your eyes ... sparkle like 37mm anti-aircraft shells bursting in the dark sky") - nevertheless, she seems curiously intent on humoring him. The two of them are soon locked in the embrace of a deep and passionate kiss. It is an incongruous situation, to say the least, and the viewer is left wondering how Klink's new girlfriend ever fell for him as hard as she seems to have done.

Meanwhile, in the dead of night, a lone POW hiding beneath a blanket darts from barracks to barracks, keeping to the shadows. He is heading straight for the wire. The motion has been noted up in the closest guard tower, though, and its heavy M3 machine gun is now trained on the man. Suddenly a spotlight hits him, and a burst of high-caliber weapons fire behind him sends him running for cover. As he tries to flee, he runs into Schultz, who has quickly rounded the corner of the next barracks. Hogan is soon on the scene, and Schultz demands to know what is going on. Hogan claims that the POW was just airing his blanket, all the while giving him a look that says, "Shut up and let me do the talking." The POW, an enlisted American named Miller, quickly agrees with him. Schultz lets the matter drop after receiving a few chocolate bars, telling the prisoner to pick a more convenient time to "air his blanket." Hogan acknowledges him and escorts Miller back to the barracks, where Walters of the Barracks 3 gang is waiting for them. The searchlight is turned off, and Schultz goes back to his patrol - apparently never noticing, or choosing to ignore, the fact that Miller is not one of Stalag 13's inmates.

Miller is in fact from Stalag 5 - as are his six companions down in the tunnels. They have been there for two weeks, ever since their mass escape from Stalag 5, and cabin fever is starting to get to them. Hogan berates Miller for his stupid escape attempt and orders him to stay put. One to three downed Allied airmen every now and then they can handle, but not seven escaped POWs at once. Both the Unsung Heroes and the underground are having trouble arranging safe passage to England, so the best thing Miller and his companions can do is to remain hidden in the tunnels. The escapees are not happy about this, especially Miller, but they have little choice in the matter.

The next day, General Burkhalter has arrived at Stalag 13 to pay Klink a visit. With him is Major Strauss - the commandant of Stalag 5. Strauss is a competent officer with a good record; however, Stalag 5 has one of the worst escape records under Burkhalter's command. In fact, there have been so many escape attempts in the past year that the Wehrmacht's 14th Division has been kept tied down in the area just to deal with the problem. The recent mass escape of seven POWs from Stalag 5 has finally prompted Burkhalter to take some action. He reluctantly orders Klink to take Strauss under his wing and teach him some of his techniques, due mainly to Stalag 13's no-escape record. Strauss is outraged. He knows Klink and the kind of man he is. To him, Stalag 13's no-escape record is a fluke, and there is nothing Klink can't teach him that he doesn't already know - or not want to know. Burkhalter overrides his protests. Klink is to give Strauss full access to everything at Stalag 13 - every building, every security precaution, every exercise and procedure, every book and record - in short, every detail that affects camp operations. Perhaps then Strauss might find something that will help him stop the flow of escapes from Stalag 5. Klink is reluctant to give Strauss such freedom to camp operations for personal reasons, but he too has no choice. The only other option for the both of them, Burkhalter informs them, is a shared berth on a train the Russian Front. "Then the only thing you'll be fighting over," he says with a smile, "is who gets the upper berth." Strauss grudgingly moves into the VIP guest quarters at Stalag 13, while Burkhalter temporarily takes over direct command of Stalag 5. Strauss' training under Klink begins the next day.

It doesn't take long for the sharp-eyed Strauss to sniff out some peculiar bookkeeping in the camp records, and he secretly consults with Schultz on the matter. Schultz, delighted at the chance to cause Klink trouble (and with the help of a food bribe) explains the curious entries for Strauss. As it turns out, Klink has been raiding official camp funds to support his own extravagant lifestyle - including his current flirtations with local "tomato" Sofia Lindemann - and hiding this under spurious bookkeeping entries. There are a number of these - caviar for Reichsmarshall Goring, transportation funds to send the prisoners to church in town, and so on. This is all the evidence Strauss needs to break Klink. Armed with this information, Strauss confronts Klink in the camp commandant's own office and threatens to expose him to Burkhalter. Klink's only way out is to restore Strauss to Burkhalter's good graces.

As attentive as ever to camp operations, and with a little help from a cooperative Hilda, Hogan and the Unsung Heroes are soon aware of Klink's predicament. They have their own problems, though, and even the aid of the Barracks 3 gang is not enough to offset their current woes. They've just gotten in a group of Allied airmen who were downed in a recent bombing raid, and now Hogan's "motel" beneath the camp is filled beyond capacity. Hogan suddenly realizes that he can use Klink's situation to kill two birds with one stone - getting his guests safely out of camp and on the way to England, while at the same time getting Strauss off of Klink's back. He offers to help Klink out of his troubles, no strings attached, so long as Klink does not question or try to find out how Hogan will manage it. Klink has little choice in the matter and soon agrees. As for the downed airmen and Stalag 5 escapees, there is a risk, Hogan tells them. There's a 50-50 chance that the men from Stalag 5 will be re-incarcerated, and the airmen locked up with them. Miller and the Stalag 5 escapees aren't happy about those odds, but agree to Hogan's plan anyway. Hogan then asks if any of his guests can speak German. One of the Allied officers, a USAAF captain who looks like an ideal Aryan, stands up and addresses Hogan in perfect German. "He sounds just like a native!" Carter exclaims. Hogan smiles, then tells Kinch to secure a large truck from the motor pool and asks to see the officer later. The man is perfect for the plan Hogan has in mind.

Later that night, Miller leads the Stalag 5 escapees as they wander up to the main gate of Stalag 13, waving a white flag. They claim to have decided to turn themselves in, and are surrendering themselves to Klink. Klink turns them over to an elated Strauss, who now has just the thing he needs to get back into Burkhalter's favor. He takes charge of his prisoners and calls for a truck from Stalag 5 to carry them back. Within a half-hour a truck shows up, with armed guards and an officer in charge, for that very purpose. Strauss does not recognize the officer, Captain Schmidt (as he names himself) and points out that it hasn't been long enough since his call for the truck to make the trip. Schmidt points out that they were already on their way, since Stalag 5 received an anonymous call that the escaped POWs could be found at Stalag 13. Strauss looks at Klink and smiles, saying, "Good job." Strauss then announces that he will ride with them back to Stalag 5 with Schmidt and the escapees. At this, Schmidt looks uneasily at Hogan - for he and his guards are in fact the downed airmen Hogan was hiding in the tunnels. Hogan smiles back at him. "Why don't you take him with you all the way?" he suggests, emphasizing the last three words. Schmidt smiles, agrees, and escorts Strauss to the truck. The guards hustle the escapees into the truck, and it is soon driving through the main gate into the night.

The next day, the good news comes to Klink. Strauss and his truck full of prisoners have mysteriously disappeared. Klink will definitely not be having any more trouble out of him. He is so elated that he decides, true to form, to invite Sophie over that evening to celebrate. That night, Klink is busy romancing Sophie in his quarters when there is an escape alarm inside the camp. Irritated at being interrupted for official business, Klink makes his excuses and leaves. That gives Hogan the chance to slip inside and give Sophie the kind of attention that she was so sadly lacking with Klink. As the curtain falls and the episode comes to an end, the viewer is left to wonder whether or not Sophie's real reason for dating Klink the past month was to see Hogan on the sly instead.

Story Notes Edit

  • This is the one hundred and forty-first episode of the series, but is the one hundred and thirty-ninth episode shown on television and the twenty-first episode shown for the Fifth Season.
  • This episode features two guest stars, Noam Pitlik (Strauss) and Forrest Compton (Schmidt), that appear in other episodes of the series as other characters.
  • Guest star Forrest Compton (Schmidt) also in the series appears as Albert Messiner, a German underground agent who is a semi-recurring character in its later seasons.
  • Eddie Firestone (Miller) also played two members of the Barracks 3 gang in other episodes - Scotty, in Go Light on the Heavy Water; and camp medic Sergeant Wilson in Operation Briefcase.
  • Two famous performers of the era are named: Betty Grable and Maurice Chevalier.

Background Trivia Edit

  • Hogan's bribing of Hilda with a pair of panty hose, i.e. nylon stockings, is a common joke in media with regards to World War II, both during the era and afterwards. "Nylons," as they are also known, have been popular with women since their invention by the DuPont Corporation in 1927. They replaced silk stockings, which were more expensive and prone to tears. Once World War II broke out, both silk and nylon were classified as vital war materials by the various governments and their production geared toward the war effort. Both kinds of stockings, either new or used, became almost impossible to find virtually overnight. Most women on both fronts during the war would go to great lengths for a good pair of stockings. This explains the success of Hogan's bribe. It is one that Hogan uses frequently with Hilda throughout the series.
  • POW rations for Allied soldiers incarcerated in German camps were poor and meager. What good health the POWs maintained was due largely to Red Cross packages. Most of the time, everything in individual parcels save chocolate and cigarettes was turned over by the POWs to their camp cook (in this case LeBeau). He then combined them with what little food the Germans gave them - usually just a little bread and some potatoes - for their daily meals. So when LeBeau says he's almost out of food, what he's really saying is that he's almost out of the good food that comes in their Red Cross packages.
  • Likewise, Hogan's frequent bribing of Schultz with chocolate was a common thing in real-life Luft-Stalags, due to the hardships of Germany's war-strapped economy.
  • The truck that supposedly came from Stalag 5 is a World War II era U.S. Army GMC CCKW "deuce-and-a-half" repainted in German colors and with German insignia. It is seen frequently throughout the series, and can often be found parked in the camp motor pool. It is the ancestor of the post-war Dodge M35 with which most us are familiar today. It is probably standing in for a Mercedes-Benz L3000 3-ton truck. Hogan specifically requested such a large truck, which would have precluded use of the smaller Opel Blitz

Timeline Notes and Speculations Edit

  • This is the thirteenth episode of the series in chronological order, per the series timeline. It takes place after The Great Brinksmeyer Robbery, and is in turn followed by Color the Luftwaffe Red.
  • This appears to take place in the week following the Allied bombing raid on Düsseldorf on the night of November 10, 1943. Hogan mentions the raid, saying, "It's about time." He and other characters also make references to the fact that the Battle of Stalingrad is still raging.
  • This is the first time, chronologically, that we learn about Klink borrowing from camp funds to pay for his own personal expenses - in this case, his romance with Sofia Lindemann.
  • Klink first met Sofia Lindermann a month ago.
  • Stalag 5, commanded by Major Strauss, has suffered 100 successful escapes in the past year.
  • SPECULATION: The events of Fat Hermann, Go Home are referenced, although this is impossible chronologically. Klink's books indicate that he bought champagne and caviar for a visit by Reichsmarshall Göring. This visit (by Schultz in disguise) won't happen for two more years. We know that these are false entries, though, since Klink actually ordered them for himself. A more likely explanation is that Göring had been in the area and Klink bought them in anticipation of such a visit, then decided to keep them and doctored the books after the Reichsmarshall didn't show.

Quotes Edit

After the failed escape ...

  • Schultz (shouting) - Halt! (to guard tower) Stop it! Stop it! Quit shooting! (to Miller) What are you doing? Going for a little walk, huh?!
  • Miller - Yeah! Goin' for a walk.
  • Schultz (still shouting) - You're walking right into the cooler, you understand?!
  • Hogan (racing into scene) - Hold it, Schultz, you can't arrest this man.
  • Schultz (calming down) - Who says so?
  • Hogan - He was just airing his blanket. (looks sternly at Miller) Right?
  • Miller (understanding) - Yes, sir.

(Klink runs out onto the porch of his quarters)

  • Klink (yelling) - Schultz! Schultz! What's going on out there? What's all this shooting?
  • Hogan (quietly, to Schultz) - He was just airing his blanket.

(Hogan reaches into his jacket, pulls out a candy bar, and hands it to Schultz)

  • Schultz (taking the bar) - You want me to believe that?

(Hogan gives him another candy bar)

  • Schultz (smiling and yelling in reply) - Herr Kommandant! False alarm! The guards in the tower are trigger-happy!
  • Klink (sternly) - There will be no more trigger-happiness tonight! (returns inside to Sophie)
  • Schultz (yelling) - Jawohl, Herr Kommandant! (mumbling at Hogan) Take him BACK to the barracks! (growling at Miller) And YOU! Wait until after the WAR to air your BLANKET, you understand!

Back in the barracks ...

  • Hogan - All right, get back down in the tunnel - or next time I may do the shooting, and I won't miss!

After Miller is returned to the tunnels ...

  • Hogan (to his men) - Keep them amused.
  • Kinch - We're trying.
  • LeBeau - They don't like my Maurice Chevalier impersonation.
  • Kinch - Why don't you try Betty Grable?

(Lebeau thinks about it, then rolls up his pants legs and assumes Betty Grable's iconic poster pose. Kinch and Hogan look dimly at him.)

  • Hogan - Better stick with Chevalier.

(Lebeau laughs like Chevalier in reply)

Hogan goes to Hilda for some intel. He stands close to her while she files papers.

  • Hogan - This major that just came in with General Burkhalter.
  • Hilda (pretending to ignore him) - What about him?
  • Hogan - Oh, nothing. He just looks familiar, that's all. (moving in close)
  • Hilda (turning to face him) - And you'd like to know who he is.

(Hogan puts his arm around Hilda and gives her a long kiss)

  • Hilda - Major Strauss. (takes a breath) Commandant, Luft-Stalag 5. (breathes again, smiles at him)
  • Hogan (smiles back) - That's interesting.
  • Hilda (still smiling) - And so are you.

(Now it's Hilda's turn to kiss Hogan. Hers is short, though, after which she takes some papers and heads for her desk. Hogan follows her.)

  • Hogan - Mind if I catch a little of this fascinating conversation?
  • Hilda (turning to face him) - Why?
  • Hogan - Well, nothing. Major Strauss may be transferred here. How's that for a reason?
  • Hilda (shaking her head) - Not too good.

(Hilda goes to her desk and sits down. Hogan follows her.)

  • Hogan - Hilda?

(Hogan pulls a pair of nylon stockings out of his jacket and offers them to her. Her face lights up at once and she takes them.)

  • Hilda (laughing) - That's a much better reason.

(Hogan starts to head for Klink's door, but stops. He then leans around Hilda and kisses her again. They both smile at each other.)

  • Hogan - So's that.

Burkhalter discusses Strauss' record with Klink

  • Burkhalter - In the past year, Major Strauss ... over 100 escapes from Stalag 5, and more than half of them successful.
  • Klink (interjecting) - That is terrible!
  • Burkhalter (snidely) - Somehow, I knew you would think so. (back to Strauss) How do you explain it, Major?
  • Klink (again interjecting) - Yes! How do you explain it, Major?
  • Strauss (matter-of-factly) - Well, we do have a large prisoner population--
  • Klink (interrupting) - So does Stalag 13! But we have never had one successful escape here!
  • Burkhalter (interrupting) - Klink! If you don't mind, I'll blow your horn. For once, you don't have to do it yourself.
  • Klink (unsure of what he means) - Thank you, General Burkhalter.

Strauss, on Klink ....

  • Strauss - Herr General, what can I possibly learn from him? I know how to wear a monocle!
  • Klink (angrily, rising from his desk) - Perhaps you can use it to look for your missing prisoners!
  • Burkhalter (sternly) - Major! Klink is your superior. You are being disrespectful.
  • Strauss (evenly) - Herr General, I do not want to come here as a student - or anything!
  • Burkhalter (calmly) - The alternative for you is a nice train trip to the Russian Front.
  • Klink (protesting) - General Burkhalter, I do not want him here!
  • Burkhalter (yelling) - And you, Klink, can go to Russia on the same train! (calms down, gives both an evil look) Then all you two will have to fight about is who gets the upper berth.

Carter and Hogan discuss the latest arrivals ....

  • Carter (exclaiming) - Fifteen guys! Holy Toledo!
  • Hogan (matter-of-factly) - What can we do? We're the only motel in a combat zone.

Hogan discusses the "guest" situation with his men.

  • LeBeau - Colonel, I'm running out of food. Pretty soon, I'll have to give them the same stuff that Klink gives us.
  • Hogan - Poisoning people is no way to get rid of them.

Klink discusses his predicament with Hogan.

  • Klink (looking in the mirror) - Why must I be so attractive to women, Hogan? Why?
  • Hogan - That's one of the great mysteries of our time.
  • Klink (turning, glaring at him) - My last official act could be to send you to the cooler!
  • Hogan - You do that and I won't be able to help you.

and later, after Klink cuts a deal with Hogan ....

  • Klink - But Hogan, why would you go through all that trouble?
  • Hogan - I'm doing it for my men. They've developed a fond affection for you, sir.
  • Klink (surprised) - Oh, well ....
  • Hogan - I mean, when you walk by with your riding crop and your monocle, they say, "There goes Klink! He's embarrassing, but he's ours."
  • Klink (uneasy) - I'm not sure, Hogan, but I think I should be offended.
  • Hogan (waves at him) - Work on it.

Klink borrows one of Hogan's caustic comments ...

  • Klink - Now Hogan, when is all of this going to happen?
  • Hogan - One of these nights, real soon.
  • Klink - I don't think I like the sound of that.
  • Hogan - Would you rather hear sleigh bells? Coming towards you?

... and later ...

  • Strauss - How did you recapture them, Colonel? Where were they?
  • Klink - Don't get cozy with me, Major. One false move and you could be hearing sleigh bells - coming towards YOU.

Bloopers Edit

It is difficult to tell, but it looks as if Hogan might be handing Hilda a pair of modern, one-piece panty hose. These were a post-war development. Individual nylon stockings for each leg held up by garters, as with earlier silk stockings, were the common fashion during World War II.

External links Edit

Previous episode:
One Army at a Time
Next episode:
Six Lessons from Madame LaGrange

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