Chinatown is the sixth episode of Due South's first season.

Storyline: After overhearing the abduction of a Chinese restaurateur's son, Constable Fraser and Detective Vecchio decide to look into it, but the FBI interferes with the investigation.

Original Air Date: November 3, 1994

Written by David Cole

Directed by Lyndon Chubbuck

Synopsis Edit

Mr Lee Restaurant Chinatown

Fraser and Ray go out to dinner at a restaurant in the heart of Chinatown, but they find that the restaurant's key stocks leave something to be desired. The owner's son, David Lee, steps out to take a break and is promptly kidnapped by three Chinese men driving a Lincoln town car. Fraser hears the sounds of breaking glass and screaming bystanders, and - much to Ray's dismay - leaps out the second-storey window of the restaurant to find out what's happening. The town car escapes down an alley; no one on the street seems to have witnessed anything.

Elaine Besbriss Phone Chinatown

Back at the restaurant, Mr. Lee is on the phone with a slick-suited character named Charlie Wong, who does not claim responsibility for David's abduction but demands that Mr. Lee show him some respect if he wants to see him again. After Fraser and Ray offer their assistance, Lee tells them about his long-running feud with Wong, whom Ray knows to be an upstart Chinatown mafia boss. Huey and Gardino burst in on the interview, trying to claim jurisdiction over the case; but an additional complication arises when a pair of power-hungry FBI agents named Ford and Deeter throw their weight into the police station. 

Broken Windows Chinatown

Fraser delves deep into his aural memory to recall the sounds that the getaway car made after he lost sight of it. Over Ray's skepticism, he tracks it through the alleys until he finally finds a chunk of mud that was used to obscure the licence plate. Finding that the mud is mingled with soap, he and Ray contact Elaine to get the location of a Chinese laundromat on the riverbank; little do they know that Huey and Gardino, working in league with the FBI agents for their own purposes, have bugged Elaine's desk phone. At the laundromat, they find that Wong's thugs have already flown the coop - just before an FBI SWAT team shows up and riddles the laundromat with bullet holes.

Ray Vecchio Benton Fraser Tasting Nail Clippings Chinatown

Ford refuses to take responsibility for the botched assault, but instead brings Wong himself in for questioning. Though Fraser despairs that David will be killed because of his indiscretion, Ray leads him to a washroom upstairs where they eavesdrop on the interview. Fraser catches the sound of Wong's fingernail trimmer just before Wong's lawyer arrives with a writ of habeas corpus in hand. Meeting Lee outside the station, Wong once again demands a simple show of respect - which amounts to a sacrifice of Lee's personal pride - in exchange for David. 

In the interview room, Fraser collects Wong's nail clippings and tastes low-grade gunpowder on them. He deduces that Wong's men have gone to ground at a fireworks warehouse; Mrs. Lee tells them that her husband is on his way to meet Wong at a club down their street. 

Mr Lee Panda Club Chinatown

Lee conceals a five-shot revolver in a lacquerware box and walks to the club, losing the respect of his neighbours with every step he takes. Before greeting Lee, Wong quietly orders his men to leave the bodies in the alley, only seconds before Fraser and Ray take the fireworks warehouse by storm and rescue David. With a little help from Diefenbaker, Fraser runs down the last of Wong's hoods, while Ray takes out Wong before he can kill Lee.

The Lees are reunited just as the FBI reaches the warehouse and creates a gigantic fireworks display over the whole of Chinatown.

Cast Edit

  • Lu Yu as Mr. Lee
  • Joel de la Fuente as Charlie Wong
  • Alex Carter as Agent Ford
  • Tsai Chin as Mrs. Lee
  • Michael Hong as David Lee
  • Mark Melymick as Agent Deeter

Memorable Quotes Edit

Ray Vecchio: Oh, no, Benny, not the window! I don't think they have doors in Canada!

Benton Fraser: You know, you let a wolf save your life...and they make you pay, and pay, and pay.
Ray Vecchio: That's why I don't own a wolf.
Benton Fraser: Do you think he's all right?
Ray Vecchio: Who?
Benton Fraser: Diefenbaker.
Ray Vecchio: He's a wild animal!
Benton Fraser: He didn't look all right.
Benton Fraser: Potassium nitrate…and a touch of sulphur.
Ray Vecchio: That’s gunpowder.
Benton Fraser: Yes, but not ordinary gunpowder, it’s very low-grade. It’s not like anything I’ve ever tasted.
Ray Vecchio: You do this a lot, try to solve cases by gnawing on ammunition?
Benton Fraser: I admit it’s a calculated risk, Ray, but…I am a professional. This is not for amateurs.

Agent Ford: Who's he?
Lt. Welsh: He's a Mountie.
Agent Ford: What's he doing here?
Lt. Welsh: I'm never entirely sure.
Benton Fraser: Lieutenant, I understand your dilemma. In Canada, we have more than a passing familiarity with confusion. We're comprised of ten provinces and two territories, communicating across six time zones in two official languages. The English don't understand the French, the French don't understand the English, and the Inuit, quite frankly, couldn't give a damn about either of them. Added to the equasion is the Assembly of First Nations, with a total of 633 separate Indian bands speaking 180 sub-dialects among their fifty linguistic groups. And as if that weren't enough, there are some fishermen on the East Coast with a remarkably whimsical accent.
Lt. Welsh: There is a point to this, I assume?

Benton Fraser: Would everybody please settle down? I'm trying to listen.
Ray Vecchio: To what?
Benton Fraser: Shhh...(sounds of getaway car in background) I'm not certain, but it sounds like, 'doo-shhhh, doo-shhhh'. What does that sound like to you?
Ray Vecchio: How about the sound of my job going down the toilet? I'm sitting in a dark closet with a Mountie, being licked by a deaf wolf. (beat) That was the wolf, wasn't it?
Benton Fraser: Yes, Ray.
Ray Vecchio: Oh, thank God.
Ray Vecchio: This is exactly what I was afraid would happen.
Benton Fraser: Ray, please.
Ray Vecchio: You cannot track a Lincoln town car through the streets of Chicago. It's not like a beaver. It doesn't leave nice little tail tracks in the tundra.
(The Riv splashes through a water-filled pothole)
Benton Fraser: Wait a minute...
Ray Vecchio: What is it?

Benton Fraser: (pauses, remembering the sounds of the getaway car) We've picked up their trail.
Ray Vecchio: Why do I feel more and more like Dale Evans? Hey, Roy! Wait for me!

Elaine Besbriss: I know what it is. I'm an idiot. I meet this guy, he's like no one I've ever met before, you know? Warm, caring, sensitive...the kind that really rips your guts out. And right there, right there I should have known. There should have been this big neon sign flashing in ten-foot-high letters, "Elaine, you're about to make a complete fool of yourself!" I mean, just who the hell does he think he is? Coming around here with that dopey-looking grin, saying things like, "Good morning, Elaine. How are you today, Elaine? Thank you kindly for your time, Elaine." Like I'm supposed to just take that? And the minute you let him get to you, you can't sleep, your skin starts to break out, and next thing you know, you're wandering around supermarkets humming tunes by The Carpenters at the top of your you have any idea what that feels like?
(Diefenbaker gobbles Elaine's last spoonful of ice cream)
Elaine Besbriss: Well, at least I won't be the only one who breaks out.

Soundtrack Edit

  • "Prospero's Speech" by Loreena McKennitt [album: The Mask and Mirror] (as Lee goes to meet Wong)