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The Pretender
The Better Part of Valor
  Season 1
Episode # 1.10
Airdate January 11, 1997
Writer(s) Javier Grillo-Marxuach
Director(s) Anson Williams
Guest star(s) Michael O'Neill, Isabel Glasser, Anthony Starke
Last name (s) O’Leary
Location (s) Pittsburgh, PA
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The Better Part of Valor is the tenth episode of the first season of The Pretender and it first aired on January 11th, 1997 on NBC in the United States. It features first appearance of a recurring guest star Paul Dillon as Angelo.


Jarod pretends to be a firefighter to find out how a fellow firefighter, Tamara Copeland, was killed. Miss Parker meets an old college mate and they reminisce over old times.


The pretender, working as a firefighter under the name "Jarod O'Leary", saves a little girl’s life, which turns him into an instant hero at the “fighting 16th” company and an article is published on him. His goal is to find out the truth about what happened to Tamara Copeland, another firefighter. Jarod learns about Insta-Cheez and meat balls along the way.

Angelo is introduced. Sydney describes him as “a sponge /--/. He has no personality of his own but he can absorb the personality data that we give him. And he has read every scrap we have on Jarod” and “he could never make a moral judgment of his own.  Also, he would never run away”. Broots spends quite a bit of time trying to decode Angelo's activity and translate it into a location on Jarod.

Miss Parker meets with her old mate from the college times - Michael Patrick - while having lunch with Sydney.


Main Cast

Guest Stars

  • Michael O'Neill as Captain Harrigan
  • Isabel Glasser as Lieutenant Nancy Gleason
  • Anthony Starke as Michael Patrick
  • Jon Gries as Broots
  • Kenneth White as John Zimmerman

Featuring Stars (Cast)


  • Firefighter - Jarod O'Leary


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