July 19, 2005 at 04:00 AM EDT

Though a complete unknown at the start of NBC’s madcap mid-’80s mystery series, the second-billed Pierce Brosnan soon became a golden child for the network in Remington Steele: Season One — and for good reason. As the movie-trivia-mad pseudo-sleuth, the future 007 was the perfect foil to Stephanie Zimbalist’s type-A private eye. The baby-faced Brosnan also gave the first season its flair — with its rat-a-tat banter and ripped-from-the-MGM-film-vaults plots (the ”In the Steele of the Night” episode? A clever play on And Then There Were None. ”Steele’s Gold”? The Treasure of the Sierra Madre) — making it arguably the best of the series’ five-year run. Yeah, you heard me, Mildred Krebs! EXTRAS Disappointingly, Brosnan only pops up during two perfunctory making-of featurettes, and Zimbalist is completely MIA (because she was too. . .busy?). Commentary duty is thus relegated to series cocreators Robert Butler and Michael Gleason, whose remarks tend to be light on the substance (a typical Butler observation: ”That’s fun, Pierce scratching himself!”) and heavy on silence. Writer Susan Baskin fares better; she smartly deconstructs ”Vintage Steele,” one of the set’s best episodes, with discussion of wine-producing monks and choreographing dead bodies.

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