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5 (27th Overall)
November 1, 1985
Repeat Airdate
February 7, 1986
TV Rating
TV-14 D-S-V
Guest Stars
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"Buddies" is the fifth episode of Miami Vice's second season. It premiered on November 1, 1985, and was rerun on February 7, 1986.


Crockett's old army buddy has a secret that could link him to a mob hit contract.


While off duty, Crockett meets his old Army buddy, Robbie Cann in a bar. Robbie tells Sonny he and his wife Julia just had a baby boy, and asks Sonny to be the baby's godfather. Sonny agrees, then Robbie (who is a little drunk) begins dancing on a pool table. When a bar patron gets unruly with Robbie and pulls a gun, Sonny pulls his to keep things under control. He and Robbie leave, told not to come back.

"We were buddies!"

At the Shelbourne Hotel (owned by Johnny Cannata and Frank Doss) "Ample Annie", wife of Noogie Lamont, is breaking in a new barmaid, Dorothy Bain, who had to bring her infant son in with her after failing to locate a babysitter. Annie offers to babysit so Dorothy can work. Before leaving, Dorothy covers up her bruises caused by her ex-husband, telling Annie that before she left him and moved to Miami she vowed to kill anyone who tried to hurt her baby. Dorothy goes on shift, but accidentally spills drinks after a patron makes a pass at her and is fired. Despondent, she camps out in the lobby with her baby. Standup comic Morty Price, who is working that night, invites Dorothy up to his room to "see what he can do for her", as he knows Cannata and Doss personally. Instead Price takes the opportunity to try and rape Dorothy, but she manages to get away and pull a steak knife on Price; when he tries again, Dorothy stabs him to death. Before leaving, Dorothy puts a bunch of papers in the bag with her baby -- papers that turn out to be betting sheets Price had made with Doss. Crockett returns from his off time and joins Tubbs in the Price murder investigation; Vice is involved because of the ownership of the club. Trudy brings Annie in; she tells them she saw Dorothy Bain going off with Price just before the murder, and gives them Dorothy's address. Before Crockett and Tubbs arrive, two intruders bust into her room in masks demanding "papers." They are chased away by the Vice duo, but Dorothy flees before they can stop and question her.

Back at OCB, Castillo reviews the history of Cannata and Doss, and learns they want to open a legitimate casino in the future when the laws are changed, but to do so they must stay clean of illegal gambling; they are both under investigation by the FBI and other government agencies for exactly that. Castillo assigns Switek and Zito to video survillence, Gina and Trudy to work at the hotel, and Crockett and Tubbs to track down Bain. Robbie goes to see Cannata and Doss to pay on a loan he took out from them to open his own club. He interrupts them talking business and makes clear he wants nothing to do with it; Cannata seems somewhat upset by Robbie's brusqueness.

During the playback of Switek's video, they see Robbie at the club with Cannata and Doss, and wonder what he's doing there. Crockett and Tubbs go to see Robbie, confronting him with their information and asking what he knows about Doss' and Cannata's business. He denies knowledge of anything they're involved in, but acknowledges borrowing money from Cannata and Doss for his club. Crockett asks him to separate himself from them and to let the Vice cops know if hears anything about Bain. Tubbs presses Robbie further, until he demands Crockett get Tubbs out of his office. Tubbs is suspicious, believing that Robbie is hiding something and Crockett can't see it due to their long friendship. While Crockett attends Robbie and Julia's son's baptism, Tubbs finds out that Robbie's real last name is Cannata (making him Johnny Cannata's son) having changed his name after high school. Sonny starts to storm out of OCB when Gina lets them know that Dorothy Bain's ex-husband is in town trying to find her. When he offers them some lip about their failure to find his wife, Crockett snaps and slams him up against the wall, asking him how he likes being slapped around, before Castillo calls Crockett into his office and orders him off the Price case.

Dorothy calls her father, pleading with him to take her son back to New Jersey, but he refuses, and she spends the night in a phone booth before being picked up by Annie. Sonny goes to see Robbie, demanding to know why he lied about his true identity. Robbie talks about how being a Cannata is like having a scar on him, how he managed to get away from the family, something no one has done. He admits that Doss and Price had made some bets that were on the tally sheets that Dorothy took, but insists he knows nothing about Doss' or his father's business. Crockett doesn't believe him and is shocked that Robbie will stand by and let the girl die to keep his father clean. Robbie says that for the first time since his return from Vietnam he now feels like a man, having a wife, child, and a decent business, even if he needed a loan from his family to open it. Robbie then pulls out a gun and threatens suicide, shaken by Crockett's doubt. He reveals to Sonny he knows where the girl is, but is afraid that if he tells, Doss will kill him; Sonny threatens him with a conspiracy to murder charge if he doesn't tell. Crockett challenges him to be a man by doing the right thing and not allowing Dorothy to be killed by Doss' goons. After a pep talk by Sonny about their 'Nam days and about doing the right thing, Robbie agrees to go help Dorothy, but wants to call Julia first. Crockett allows him to do so, but Robbie escapes out a secret door and takes off with $1000 and a gun, intending to put Dorothy on a plane out of Miami. Crockett pursues but is stopped by traffic and debris in the roadway. He seeks out Annie and learns Dorothy is hiding at her place. As Robbie helps Dorothy pack, Doss' goons break in; Robbie attempts to fight them but is shot in the shoulder. Crockett busts in and kills the goons; Robbie returns the favor by calling out when a thug tries to shoot Crockett from behind. Robbie survives, saying he did the right thing, which Crockett reassures him he did.


Guest Stars



  • Jan Hammer's haunting music played during Dorothy's plight (notably when she is alone in the lobby and later walking the streets) would be used again (to great effect) in the season 3 episode "Forgive Us Our Debts" and the season 4 episode "Deliver Us from Evil". It has never been released on any Miami Vice soundtrack, but is generally known as Dorothy Bain's Theme.
  • The Catholic priest that conducted Robbie's son's baptism was a real Miami priest, the Rev. Raul Angulo of St. Patrick's Catholic Church (now retired from the Archdiocese of Miami), though the scene was shot at St. Mary's Cathedral.
  • The Shelbourne Hotel is still in existence, now a luxury beach resort.
  • James Remar played the main villain in the 1982 Eddie Murphy film 48 Hrs., which also featured fellow Miami Vice guest stars Brion James (from "Borrasca"), David Patrick Kelly (from "The Home Invaders"), Sonny Landham (from "Viking Bikers from Hell") and Jack Thibeau (from "Shadow in the Dark"), as well as Miami Vice regular Olivia Brown in her first major role.
  • We see Crockett in a tie for the second time at Robbie's son's baptism. He previously wore one for his divorce hearing in "Calderone's Return (Part I)", and would be seen similarly dressed at Angelina Madeira's funeral in "Sons and Lovers", at Zito's funeral in "Down for the Count (Part II)", and for his wedding to Caitlin Davies in "Like a Hurricane". He would be seen with a tie more frequently during his time as Sonny Burnett in seasons 4 and 5.
  • At one point, Robbie tells Crockett, "For the first time since we landed back in the world, I feel like a man!" referring to their return from the Vietnam War. This phrase would later be used for the title of the episode "Back in the World", which would involve another of Crockett's Vietnam buddies and would focus on the ongoing drug trade from the Vietnam area.


  • After briefly disappearing in the previous episode, Larry Zito's beard reappears. This continuity error is because the network changed the running order of the episodes when they broadcast them, and it happened several times during season 2.
  • When Robbie Cann arrives at Johnny Cannatta's office to deliver his loan repayment check, Frank Doss is sitting on the sofa with a white telephone facing him, set perpendicular to the coffee table with the handset cord draped over the keypad. When Robbie leaves the office, the phone can be seen in the lower right corner now at a 45 degree angle to the corner of the coffee table with the cord no longer lying over the phone; Doss has not touched the phone, and yet it is in a different position from only seconds earlier.  
  • When Castillo calls Crockett into his office for roughing up Dorothy Bain's husband, Gina is visible standing behind Crockett and Tubbs, away from Dorothy's husband. However, when the camera cuts to a closeup of the husband, her hand can be seen resting on his right arm. When the camera cuts back to a wide shot, Gina is again nowhere near him.
  • When confronting Robbie in his office, Crockett mistakenly refers to Doss as Ross.
  • Also in Robbie's office, the shadow of a microphone is briefly seen at the top of the frame.
  • Robbie kicks in Dorothy's motel door breaking the chain and splintering the frame. Chain is back on the door and frame not splintered when Doss' men enter the room.

Production Notes

  • Filmed: August 8, 1985 - August 19, 1985
  • Production Code: 60020
  • Production Order: 27

Filming Locations

  • Hotel Shelborne, 1801 Collins Ave, Miami Beach (hotel exterior)
  • Carillon Hotel, 6801 Collins Ave, Miami Beach (Shelbourne Hotel interior)
  • Corsair Hotel, 101 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach (Crockett/Tubbs chase the intruders out of Dorothy's room)
  • The Sanctuary, 1745 James Avenue, Miami Beach (Exterior of Robbie Cann's club)
  • St. Mary's Cathedral, 7525 NW 2nd Avenue, Miami (Robbie's son baptism)
  • Motel Leonard, 54 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach (Dorothy takes baby out of the bag)
  • 234 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach (Annie's Hamburger Stand)
  • 27th Str/29th Str Collins Ave – Jackie Gleason Theater 1701 Collins Ave – Hank Meyer Bvd – 44th Str/Collins Ave – 26th Str/Indian Creek Dr (Car chase between Robbie and Crockett)



  • "Definitely not a funny way to die." -- Tubbs, then Crockett after he arrives on the scene of Morty Price's death
  • "I left that family for twelve years, and lived to tell about it!" -- Robbie Cann(ata)
  • "The only obligation you've got is to yourself, if you can look in the mirror and be proud of what you see, then you've fulfilled that obligation, if not, you're worth nothing to nobody, not to yourself, not to Julia, not to me, and certainly not to your son!" -- Crockett to Robbie
Season 2 Episodes:

"The Prodigal Son" "Whatever Works" "Out Where the Buses Don't Run" "The Dutch Oven" "Buddies" "Junk Love" "Tale of the Goat" "Bushido" "Bought and Paid For" "Back in the World" "Phil the Shill" "Definitely Miami" "Yankee Dollar" "One Way Ticket" "Little Miss Dangerous" "Florence Italy" "French Twist" "The Fix" "Payback" "Free Verse" "Trust Fund Pirates" "Sons and Lovers"