Superman on Television

Lois & Clark: Episode Reviews

Lois & Clark

Season 4 - Episode 21: "Toy Story"

Reviewed by: Nathan MacKenzie

Originally Aired: June 7, 1997
Directed by Jim Pohl
Written by Brad Kern

Guest Cast:
Grant Shaud as Harold Kripstly/The Toyman
Stacey Travis as Wendy
Jeffrey Byron as Alex Turner
Irene Olga Lopez as Beckett
Mary Frann as Alice
Susan Isaacs as Nanny
Jillian Berard as Brittany Turner
Myles Jeffrey as Ryan
Ban McCain as Anchorman
Brian McLaughlin as Joey
Laurie Stevens as Woman


Harold Kripstly is a toy inventor who loves kids, loves them so much that he has decided to kidnap orphans and bring them all to his place of joy, fun and no rules. Kripstly used to work for Dynacord Industry where he came up with the invention called the reintegrator, which is a device which moves matter from one area to another (think Star Trek, 'Beam me up Scotty'). He was laughed at, fired and told to go back to his toys. After hearing that Dynacord has aligned with STAR Labs and with the help of Dr Klein, the reintegrator, his invention, now works. Now the sons and daughter of Dynacord's board members are no longer safe.

Even though the main plot of this episode is mainly about the disappearance of children, there is a lot more going on than you realise. You feel sorry for Kripstly in this episode after being fired, laughed at for an invention that he has created and to see his invention get made without him, you can understand why he goes on the path that he does. You see his love for children, hence being an inventor of toys. We continue to see more discussion about Lois and Clark's possibility of having children and its Marta and Jonathan's 35th wedding anniversary. We also see Perry put himself out on the market again after his divorce with his ex-wife Alice after 32 and a half years of marriage.

3Review Rating - 3 (out of 5): This was a standalone episode as such, but did have a little bit of continuity that has gone on throughout the season/series. The main villain as it were was a take on the DC villain, Winslow Schott aka 'The Toyman'. I liked the idea of the character in this episode and even though he was never called 'The Toyman' in the episode, he was credited as playing the role. There was still more discussion on having children when Lois and Martha talk about it, Lois saying that they are still waiting on the results from STAR Labs which this answer will be revealed in the next episode. There was a good little sub plot with Perry after we know that he now is divorced, tries to find new love interest by use of placing an ad in the Daily Planet and when that new love interest is seen for the first time, you won't want to miss who it is.

I really enjoyed this episode, especially due to the fact that it reached into one of my favourite genres, sci-fi. Now even though the sci-fi portion of the episode was all about the reintegrator, it still had that Star Trek element in there but if you don't like sci-fi or Star Trek then this episode may not be for you. I feel the story line can be understood by some people, especially if you have had an idea and someone has used it for their own success. Anyone would be angered, hurt or even upset knowing your hard work, time and effort that was put in and to be laughed at not knowing that their plan was to use your idea for their greater success. You may not get the idea of wanting to kidnap anyone because of that mind you but all of those feelings would be there I'd imagine. One part that was never spoken about is when the CEO of Dynacord's daughter was taken; there was never a discussion about his company using the reintegrator from the idea of a worker he had fired. It's always great to see Jonathan and Martha in these episodes as we see them celebrate their wedding anniversary and I always enjoy seeing Perry and Jimmy having some scenes together.

Grant Shaud who plays Harold Kripstly/The Toyman, to me I will always remember as Miles from the TV show, Murphy Brown. It was great to see him in a different show playing a different role and he looked like he had a lot of fun. However, when he tried to get angry or loose his temper, I thought this was a little bit of a letdown. That maybe because I can't see him as someone who would get angry or mad so possibly I found it hard to watch. Stacey Travis who plays Wendy played her part well; she only had a small part but again, looks like she had fun in what she was doing. All the main actors from the show brought their game as always, no one looked like they had an off day.

Next week, "The Family Hour".

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