3x17 "Glitter Rock"

Leap Date:

April 12, 1974

Episode adopted by: RoseAnn Erks
Additional info provided by: Beckett Goddess & Brian Greene


Sam has leaped into the life of a heavy metal band singer and must keep himself from being killed by a mysterious stalker.


Audio from this episode
Bonus audio: "Rock the Redhead" and "Fate's Wide Wheel"


TV Guide Synopsis
Leap Date

Name of the Person Leaped Into
Broadcast Date
Synopsis & Review

Sam Trivia
Al's Women
Al's Outfits Worn in the Episode

Miscellaneous Trivia
Guest Stars
Guest Cast Notes
Guests who appeared in other Quantum Leap episodes
Say What?
Quotable Quotes
Best Scene

Production Credits

Production # 66404

TV Guide Synopsis:
Sam (Scott Bakula) cranks it up as a '70s rock star, but it will require some heavy mettle on his part to avoid the rocker's hard fate---being murdered. Flash: Jonathan Gries. Dwayne: Peter Noone. Nick: Robert Bauer. Philip: Christian Hoff. Sandy: Liza Whitcraft.



Detroit, Michigan

Leap Date:
April 12, 1974

Name of the Person Leaped Into:
Geoffrey "Tonic" Mole

Broadcast Date:
April 10, 1991 - Wednesday

Synopsis & Review:

Sam leaps into Jeffrey "Tonic" Mole, the lead in a KISS-inspired band in the middle of a show. Sam is lost and so fails to perform the songs one of the other band members such as Flash McGrath (played by Jon Gries) wrote, upsetting the man. Sam promises that at the next show he'll do as he said. Sam sees a strange boy in the crowd staring at him and is a little disturbed.

Al shows up in the middle of Sam having to stop three enthusiastic fans from jumping him and is disgusted by Sam's inhibitions. Al tells Sam that Tonic is murdered after the band's next show, after he is stabbed by someone in the crowd also stating the killer was never caught. Sam's mind immediately jumps to the boy. He asks Al to stay close this leap and Al heads to the kid's apartment to find out who he is. The apartment is unhelpfully registered to “John Doe” but the kid just happens to throw his wallet so that it lands with his ID face up and Al discovers that he is Philip Silbart.

Al has three theories. one is that Phillip Silbart (Christian Hoff), who's a teenaged fan of the band and of Tonic. whom, he alleges, is his father from a one-time backstage tyrst with his mother in the late 1950s, might actually be crazed fan who kills Sam, Flash might kill him to become the leader of the band or because his girlfriend Sandy won't stop trying to jump Sam, and his manager Dwayne is probably embezzling money from them so calling him on it might inspire a murder attempt.

The band throws a party in Sam's hotel room and he does his best to get through it. Early in the morning, he sees Phillip and confronts him. Phillip claims to be Tonic's son from a one-night stand a long time ago and claims to want nothing but acknowledgement. Sam is unable to give it to him (despite their similar musical abilities and webbed finger) but Phillip sticks around anyway.

Right before the show, one of the band members cannot find his wig and has to use a different one. Then when Sam is alone in the dressing room, Sandy comes on to Sam again and Flash comes in while they're in a compromised position (despite Sam trying ardently to push her off) and so he threatens to kill Sam. Since he is supposed to die that night, Sam is taking no chances so he requests to his manager that Flash get a different limo and that they leave out a different door and don't tell anybody in case the killer is just in the crowd. Sam also confronts Dwayne about the embezzlement but promises to say nothing if Dwayne gives him all of his money and allows Dwayne time to try and fix the finances since he lost a lot on the stock market.

After the concert, Sam is horrified to find out that they are leaving out the original door. He sees Phillip reaching into his pocket and thinks it is a knife but Phillip shouts out “Dad!” to warn him and Sam narrowly misses being stabbed. The would-be killer is revealed to be Dwayne to silence Tonic about the embezzlement. He stole the wig earlier and dressed up as a member of the band so no one would recognize him as the killer.

Once the band and Phillip get back to the hotel and everyone mentions how much they wish they could kill Dwayne for the embezzlement, Sam thanks Phillip for his warning and asks what he was reaching for before the near-stabbing. It turns out that Phillips was going for an old picture of his mom the night that she was supposed to have slept with Tonic and conceived him.

Phillip is crushed to find out that Tonic got his nickname because on the night in question he was in a hospital from too much vodka and tonic. Sam starts to apologize for letting Phillip down but Flash gets a good look at the picture and recognizes the woman from before the concert. The probability is good that Tonic is the dad and he and Phillip bond.

Phillip announces that all he wanted to do was meet his dad and insists that he really didn't want anything from him but Sam and Flash convince him to stick around and be a roady. Thanks to Tonic giving him his big break, Phillip goes on to later fame. Source

Personal Review by RoseAnn Erks:

I think this episode is great. I love all the songs in it. The song Fate’s Wide Wheel seems to perfectly describe project Quantum Leap and everything that Sam is doing. It deals with all the leaping into other’s bodies and no one knowing that the person is now Sam.


"Mrs. Brown You've Got a Lovely Daughter" by Herman's Hermits is playing in the background at Dwayne's. Peter Noone (Dwayne) is the lead singer of Herman's Hermits in real life.

"Fate’s Wide Wheel" by Chris Ruppenthal; performed by Scott Bakula

"Hot Spot" performed by Scott Bakula

"Rock the Red Head" by Chris Ruppenthal; performed by Scott Bakula
(See the full version in the production credits section on this page!)

Sam Trivia:
Sam says that he won’t take advantage of girls throwing themselves at him.

He says that being a rock star is worse than the time that he was a Chip ‘N Dales dancer, meaning he remembers that leap.

Sam doesn’t remember Mark David Chapman, Milli Vanilli, or Pete Townsend. He does remember who Hendrix is. 

Sam was a nerd and never heard of King Thunder, but he listened to Simon & Garfunkle. 

He starts telling Al about process schizophrenia. 

Sam remembers who shot Reagan but not who shot John Lenon.

Al’s Outfits Worn in the Episode:
Al’s first outfit is a shiny silver jacket, black pants, white tie with red polka dots, and a coral shirt. 

The second outfit Al wears is red pants, a shiny green tie, green jacket with stop signs on the sleeves and on the back there are white lines going down the sides like a street, and a white shirt.

Al's Women:
Al gets a kick out of all the female groupies.

Miscellaneous Trivia:
The group Sam has leaped into is called King Thunder and they are from England. Their original name was the Dingles. 

Al appeared in the episode 10 times. 

The imaging chamber door opens 2 times.

The scene in the mall was filmed at the Hitchcock Theater lobby on the Universal Studios lot.

Music Artists (in episode):
King Thunder is the bands name
Tonic Lead Singer/Guitarist
Flash co-singer/Guitarist
Nick Guitarist
Wilder Guitarist

The credits flash across a full concert version of "Rock The Redhead" performed by Scott Bakula and the cast with Dean Stockwell!

Regular Cast:
Scott Bakula
Dean Stockwell

Guest Stars:
Jonathan Gries as Flash McGrath
Peter Noone as Dwayne Brengle
Christian Hoff as Phillip Silbart
Michael Cerveris as Nick
Robert Bauer as Wilder
Elizabeth Whitcraft (as Liza Whitcraft) as Sandy
Jan Eddy as Whittler
Sharon Martin as Blonde
Dorrie Krum as Heather
Bob Cady as Chase
Bruce Michael Paine as Geoffrey “Tonic” Mole (Mirror image)
Ledge Musselman as Roady
Scott Shaw as Axe

Guest Cast Notes:

Jonathan Gries as Flash McGrath: Jon Gries was born on June 17, 1957 in Glendale, California, USA. He is an actor and producer, known for Napoleon Dynamite (2004), Men in Black (1997) and Get Shorty (1995). In one of his appearances on Seinfeld (1989), he plays a homeless man that refuses to give Kramer's (Michael Richards) Tupperware back. In Napoleon Dynamite (2004), his character is a door-to-door salesman of Tupperware-like products. On Lost (2004) he played the father of Michael Emerson, who is actually 3 years older than him.
Son of noted writer/director/producer Tom Gries and actress Mary Munday. His paternal step-grandfather was jazz musician Muggsy Spanier (who was married to Jon's grandmother, Ruth). Played the role of a wolf man in 2 films, in The Monster Squad (1987) as Desperate Man (wolf man in human form) and in Fright Night Part 2 (1988) as Louie. He is the son of director Tom Gries.

Peter Noone as Dwayne Brengle: Peter Blair Denis Bernard Noone is an English singer-songwriter, guitarist, pianist and actor. He was the lead singer "Herman" in the 1960s pop group Herman's Hermits. Noone was born in Davyhulme, Lancashire, England, the second of five children, the son of an accountant, and attended English Martyrs (Urmston), Wellacre Primary School (Flixton), Stretford Grammar School, and St Bede's College, Manchester. Was the lead singer of Herman's Hermits from 1962-73. He also had a solo hit in the UK with a cover of David Bowie's "Oh! You Pretty Things", which reached #12 in 1971. It was never a hit for Bowie himself. Has a daughter, Natalie, with his wife, Mireille Strasser.
His favorite songs are "What Do You Want" by Adam Faith, "A Change Is Gonna Come" by Sam Cooke, "At The Hop" by Danny and the Juniors, "I Walk The Line" by Johnny Cash, "Well I Ask You" by Richard Sarstedt, "Pasadena" by Clifford Bevan, "Time Is On My Side" by Irma Thomas, "I Believe In You" by Don Williams, "Hungry For Love" by Johnny Kidd And The Pirates and "Heartbeat" by Buddy Holly. (Source: BBC Radio 2 "Tracks of My Years"). Has four siblings: Damon, Suzanne, Denise, and Louise. Parents are Joan Blair and Denis Patrick Noone.

Check out Peter on The Ed Sullivan Show from June 6, 1965:

Christian Hoff as Phillip Silbart: Christian Hoff was born on April 21, 1968 in San Diego, California, USA. He is an actor and producer, known for Encino Man (1992), The Magical World of Disney (1954) and Space: Above and Beyond (1995). Christian broke the record for most character voices in an audiobook (241) for "Tell Me How You Love the Picture." It was featured in Entertainment Weekly.
Playing Tommy DeVito in the Tony Award-winning Broadway show "Jersey Boys." Playing an apostle in the national touring company of "Jesus Christ Superstar." He was awarded the 2006 Tony Award for Best Actor in a Featured Role for a Musical for his role in the original Broadway production of "Jersey Boys."

Michael Cerveris as Nick: Born on November 6, 1960 in Bethesda, Maryland, US, he is an American actor and singer, best known for his role in Fringe (2008) and his many appearances on Broadway theatre stages. His father, also called Michael Cerveris, was a professor of music and his mother, Marsha (née Laycock), was a dancer. He grew up in Huntington, West Virginia with his brother Todd Cerveris, who is also an actor. In 1979 he graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy and in 1983 he graduated from Yale University, majoring in theater studies. The same year he debuted Off-Broadway as Malcolm in "Macbeth". His 1993 Broadway debut as Tommy/The Narrator in "The Who's Tommy" brought him his first Tony Award nomination. He continued his Broadway career as well as went to play in the West End, where he debuted in 2000 as the eponymous transsexual rock singer in "Hedwig and the Angry Inch". 2004 marked his first Tony Award, which he won for the role of John Wilkes Booth in "Assassins", the same year he also released his first solo album "Dog Eared". In 2008 he begun to appear as the Observer in Fringe (2008), which is probably his best known television role. In 2015 he won his second Tony Award for the role of the family man and closeted gay Bruce Bechdel in "Fun Home". He continues to appear in theatre productions and concerts, as well as in smaller roles in movies and television shows.

Robert Bauer as Wilder: Robert Bauer is known for Baby, Baby, Baby (2015), Dinner with Don (2017) and Waitress (2007). Is an accomplished drummer in real life. Used to play in a band called "The Watch" with actor Michael Dorn (a bass player), who had several scenes with him in an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987).

Elizabeth Whitcraft (as Liza Whitcraft) as Sandy: Elizabeth Whitcraft is known for Angel Heart (1987), Working Girl (1988) and Goodfellas (1990).

Jan Eddy as Whittler: Jan Eddy was born on September 23, 1951 in Marshalltown, Iowa, USA. He was an actor, known for The One (2001), JAG (1995) and Mr. Payback: An Interactive Movie (1995). He was married to Patricia Buchan. He died on December 17, 2015 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

Sharon Martin as Blonde: Sharon Martin is known for Quantum Leap (1989), Law & Order (1990) and Pterodactyl Woman from Beverly Hills (1996).

Dorrie Krum as Heather: Dorrie Krum is known for Gimme an 'F' (1984), Quantum Leap (1989) and Hollywood Vice Squad (1986).

Bob Cady as Chase: Bob Cady is known for Quantum Leap (1989), Infidel (2012) and Monster High (1989).

Bruce Michael Paine as Geoffrey “Tonic” Mole (Mirror image): Bruce Michael Paine was born on January 24, 1947 in Saratoga Springs, New York, USA. He was an actor, known for Quantum Leap (1989), R.S.V.P. (2002) and Married... with Children (1987). He was married to Janin Caan. He died on January 16, 2009 in Venice, California, USA. Craggy-faced singer and actor with trademark long blond hair, he was an avid Harley owner and longtime session vocalist. With the late actor Ray Sharkey he co-owned a rock n' roll club called Radio. Began his career as a folksinger in New York's Greenwich Village in the early 1960s and joined the Apple Pie Motherhood Band in the late 1960s. Has two sons, Anatole and Marlon. After high school, he spent a time in New York City studying music, voice and acting prior to moving to the West Coast. He appeared in many TV shows and national commercials. A performer in the San Francisco production of the musical "Hair," he was also lead singer with the rock band Steamhammer. Eventually moving to Los Angeles, he performed with the The Bruce Michael Paine Band.

Ledge Musselman as Roady: Ledge Musselman is known for Fight Club (1999), BASEketball (1998) and The Hot Chick (2002).

Scott Shaw as Axe: Born in the filmmaking capital of the world, Hollywood, California, Scott Shaw spent the early part of his youth growing up in South Los Angeles. He then returned to Hollywood for his teen years. Though living at the center of the film industry, Shaw was not drawn to acting or directing in his early years. He instead placed his focus on his two lifelong passions: the martial arts and eastern mysticism. From this zeal he has emerged as a respected teacher and prolific author on both of these subjects. After spending his twenties continually retuning to Asia, he finally entered the film industry in his early thirties. Quickly moving from actor onto producer and director, Shaw has created numerous feature films, music videos, and documentaries based upon what he calls Zen Filmmaking. This is a free-form style of filmmaking that does not use a formalized script and is designed to cause the filmmaker to employ spontaneous inspiration. To label Shaw as artistically diverse would be an understatement. Aside from the film industry he is a novelist, poet, artist, photographer, and musician. His musical compositions often find their way into the soundtracks of his films.

Guests who appeared in other Quantum Leap Episodes:
Jonathan Gries appeared in "The Right Hand of God" as Roscoe.

Jan Eddy appeared in "Leaping in Without a Net" as Benny Skyler.

Say What?
At the beginning of the episode, sounds of screaming fans are heard, but only photographers are seen. Once outside, the screams are heard again with actual fans shown on screen. The crowd of people seen as the limo drives away is stock footage, and the people in it don't seem as excited as what we should expect from the screaming heard before.

In the episode there are cars pulling up outside the concert. One car is actually an 1980’s Mustang making it unusual as Sam has leapt into the 70’s.

During the interview at the mall, Al in his green jacket can be seen standing out of focus for awhile before the Imaging Chamber door is ever heard.

You can see the nipple cover on the girl that flashes Sam.

The date on screen when Sam leaps in is April 12th. Al tells Sam that the body he has leapt into, “Tonic," will be murdered in 3 days time at the next concert on the 24th. This must be wrong as 3 days time would be in fact April 15th so the next concert would be then. At one point Al also states that it is April 23rd, which is also incorrect. 

The zipcode on Phillip's ID is for Lincoln, Nebraska... not Hastings. Also on the ID is Phillip's birthdate of 6/27/57, but Al reads it as "July."

The setting of the bands' second performance is supposed to be Detroit, but you can see Robert F. Kennedy Memorial stadium in Washington, D.C. in the scene.

Quotable Quotes:

Fate's Wide Wheel (Mystic Traveler)
As I travel in space and time
I want to stay, I want to go
You see my face, but it's not mine
What you can't see, you'll never know.

How can we meet if I'm not there?
Our hearts may touch, our bodies close
But time divides what we might share,
And sends us all where no one knows.

I'm just a traveler, upon the sea
Of time, of life, of fate's wide wheel.
Just a traveler, in this mystery
The me I am is all that's real to me.
-- song by King Thunder, "Glitter Rock"

Rock the Redhead
She stood 6 foot 4, barely fit through the door,
Her hair was the color of fire.
She said, "Baby what you need is some horizontal speed
And I'm the one to slake your desire.
Baby, let me take you higher

Rock the redhead all night
Rock the redhead so right
Rock the redhead tonight
Baby take me higher,
Baby take me through the night
Yeah, yeah, yeah!
-- song by King Thunder, "Glitter Rock"

Hot Spot
She's got a Hot spot
She knows how to use it.
Hot spot, oh yeah, hot spot
I can't refuse it
Baby won't you turn up the heat?
Yeah, yeah, yeah
-- song by King Thunder, "Glitter Rock"

"I am the fun."

"Al, it’s 5 o’clock in the morning. Don’t these people ever go home?"

I bet you've never fallen asleep on a girl, have you?
Well, a gentleman would never tell.
-- Sandy and a very embarrassed Sam, "Glitter Rock"

Maybe you'd better take it a little easy with that stuff, huh?
Just because you can't hold your own liquor is no reason to go sounding like a bloody bumper sticker.
-- Sam and 'Flash', "Glitter Rock"

We make the Beatles look like ants.
-- Flash, "Glitter Rock"

Well I must say this is a neat way to get undressed.
-- Al, about Sam and the 3 groupies, "Glitter Rock"
Sam - what are you doing?  You're throwing away a perfectly good fan sandwich.
-- Al, "Glitter Rock"

Oh Sam, sometimes you are just pitiful.
Why?  Because I won't take advantage of some deluded girls who are throwing themselves at me like some bad writer's dream?
-- Al and Sam, "Glitter Rock"

This is worse than when I was a Chippendales dancer.
But, they're dying to be demeaned with you, repeatedly.  I swear, it boggles the mind.
Yeah ... look ... I'm gonna boggle you, now tell me what is going on.
Not much.
-- Sam and Al, "Glitter Rock"

How did you write that song?
With a pen.
-- Interviewer and Sam, "Glitter Rock"

All you do is go out there and make a complete idiot of yourself.
-- Al, "Glitter Rock"

I really don't think it's wise to go swimming in another man's pool.
-- Al, "Glitter Rock"

Next time check your raincoat.
-- Flash to Tonic, "Glitter Rock"
(slipped that bit of British slang past the NBC censors, didn't they?)

Listen, on this leap I want you to stay really close, OK?  Cause if we see him I don't wanna take a chance on losing him.
I'll stick to you like glue.
-- Sam and Al, "Glitter Rock"

Lucky this is radio!
-- The Announcer, when a fan bares her chest for Tonic to sign, "Glitter Rock"

Do Hendrix ... or do Townsend.
That's right.
What is?
I don't know.
Yeah, that's right, Pete Townsend of the Who.
Of the what?
Never mind ... If worst comes to worst, do Milli Vanilli.
That's what I suggested in the first place!  Now get out there.
-- Sam and Al do Abbott and Costello, "Glitter Rock"

Why would a complete stranger want to kill me?  That doesn't make any sense!
You're the one with all the PhDs, you tell me.
-- Sam and Al, "Glitter Rock"

We should have killed him, brought him back to life, and killed him again.
-- Flash about Duane, "Glitter Rock"

Look Al, this is demeaning to them.
But they're dying to be demeaned with you... repeatedly.
-- Sam and Al, "Glitter Rock"

Al, it's 4 o'clock in the morning, don't these people ever go home?
- Sam, "Glitter Rock"

I told you - it's Flash.
Al, you've been certain about 3 different people.
But this time I'm really certain
-- Al and Sam, "Glitter Rock"

Best Line:
"Maybe you can teach your old man some new licks. Maybe? I think you better."

Best Scene:
The best scene is during the radio interview for WFGF in the mall, where the broadcaster asks Sam about the lyrics to "Fate’s Wide Wheel." Sam explains the lyrics with "as we all live our lives behind masks break through them from the inside and outside."

Jean-Pierre Dorleac (Costume Designer) received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Costume Design for a series in 1991.

Production Credits:

The credits flash across a full concert version of "Rock The Redhead" performed by Scott Bakula and the cast with Dean Stockwell!

Theme by: Mike Post
Music by: Velton Ray Bunch
Co-Executive Producer: Deborah Pratt
Co-Executive Producer: Michael Zinberg
Supervising Producers: Harker Wade
Co-producers: Paul  Brown, Jeff Gourson
Produced by: Chris Ruppenthal
Created by: Donald P. Bellisario
Written by: Chris Ruppenthal
Directed by:
Andy Cadiff

Executive Producer: Donald P. Bellisario
Associate Producer: 
James S. Giritlian
Executive Story Editor: Tommy Thompson

Director of Photography: Michael Watkins, A.S.C.
Production Designer: Cameron Birnie
Edited by: Jon Koslowsky, A.C.E.
Unit Production Manager: Ron Grow
First Assistant Director: Paul Sirmons
Second Assistant Director: L. Lewis Stout
Casting by: Ellen Lubin Sanitsky
Set Director: Robert L. Zilliox
Costume Designer: Jean-Pierre Dorleac
Costume Supervisors: David Rawley & Donna Roberts-Orme
Sound Mixer: Barry D. Thomas
Stunt Coordinator: Diamond Farnsworth
Sound Editor: Paul Clay
Music Editor: Donald Woods

Panaflex ®  Camera and Lenses by: Panavision ®

This motion picture is protected under laws of the United States and other countries. Unauthorized duplication, distribution or exhibition may result in civil liability and criminal prosecution.

Copyright © 1991 by Universal City Studios Inc. All Rights Reserved.

The characters and events depicted in this photoplay are fictitious. Any similarity to actual persons living or dead is purely coincidental.

Bellisarius Productions and Universal, an MCA Company


Quantum Leap Podcast - Glitter Rock

Cue the guitar solo, and get ready for some Glitter Rock!

On this episode of the Quantum Leap Podcast, hosts Allison Pregler, Matt Dale and Christopher DeFilippis don their purple fedoras and rock out to this season three whodunit in which Sam Leaps into the lead singer of a glam rock band — and must avoid being murdered by a crazed fan.

Listen to The Quantum Leap Podcast on this episode here:

Join us for lots of fun, music and laughs, as we go beyond the gonzo makeup and crazy costumes to determine if Quantum Leap’s rock and roll fantasy is a one-hit-wonder, or a power ballad for the ages.

Let us know what you think!

Leave us a voicemail by calling (707) 847-6682.

Send in your thoughts, theories, and feedback, voice memos, MP3s & email to quantumleappodcast@gmail.com.

Also, join us on Facebook.com/QuantumLeapPodcast and Twitter.com/QuantumLeapPod and as a patron receive bonus and exclusive content by signing up here… www.patreon.com/QuantumLeapPodcast.

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