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Tale Of The Goat:

Sonny Crockett is all smiles, even though he’s going to a funeral. Maximilan Il De France, or “Legba” to his cohorts, slipped through Sonny’s fingers time and again. But with him now dead, the Vice squad has a chance at taking down his voodoo-laced crime ring. The funeral is interrupted by the arrival of Legba’s lieutenant, Silvio Romulus, who squires the widow, Marie Sanserique, out of the cemetery. Suddenly a biker crashes the service and hoses down the coffin with a machine gun. Sonny and Rico dash in, and throw open the coffin. Legba’s gone! In his place, the body of a goat stares up at Sonny.

A lab expert informs Sonny, Rico and Castillo that Legba might not have been dead, particularly since an airhose was found in the coffin. A neurotoxin called tetrodotoxin, found in some Caribbean fish, can make a person appear dead for about 48 hours, then the person recovers. But some brain damage often occurs. According to the expert,“Some of your more courageous voodoo priests use this in their ceremonies, and mixed with some home-grown psychedelics, it produces what you might call their version. . . of a Zombie.”

Sonny and Rico burst out laughing, but get on the case. Staking out Silvio, they hear him arguing with Marie, with her accusing him of deceiving Legba and stealing from the operation. Then she stalks off, apparently not wanting to be around when Legba’s muscle shows up. But Sonny and Rico must follow Silvio, who leads them to the used car lot of Bobby Profile. He slips a large briefcase full of cash into the safe for Silvio. It looks like Silvio needs some money laundered before he skips town. But that night, Silvio and his men walk into the Voodoo Arcade, and Sonny and Rico see Legba and his boys walk out. They find Silvio and his men on the floor, murdered.

Meeting with Castillo, he orders them to tail Marie, probably the next thing Legba wants to take back. Plus, he’ll send a team to watch Bobby Profile. Marie refuses protection, claiming to know nothing about Legba’s murders, or smuggling anything into the country, including crowds of Hatians. But later she calls, asking the squad for help because Legba plans to take her back to Haiti tonight. Next Stan and Larry call Sonny and Rico to the car lot stakeout, where they hear Bobby being shaken down by Legba on the phone, for the money Romulus hid with him. After the call, they listen as Bobby makes plans with his assistant to murder Legba.

He doesn’t get to try. That night the Profile dealership explodes with Bobby in it.
Meanwhile, Marie is taken by Legba’s men from Sonny’s boat, despite Gina fighting and shooting one of them. With everyone dropping out of sight, Rico is certain Legba, a voodoo high priest, will have one more ceremony before running back to Haiti. He convinces Castillo to let him go undercover. But when Sonny follows the trucks taking worshippers to the ‘sanctuary’, he finds Rico’s bug detached and left in the road. Rico seems to be fitting in until he finds himself surrounded by Legba’s men, guns drawn. After phoning Gina, she reports there was a sighting of the truck near somewhere called Kendall Estates. Rico is injected with hallucinogenics by Legba, then must watch helplessly as he strangles Marie. The next morning, the Vice Squad searches the estate until Larry finds Rico at the bottom of the empty pool. Rico recovers in the hospital, almost strangling Sonny as he hallucinates that Legba is at his bedside. Now conscious, he tells Sonny and Castillo what he witnessed and remembers one more word: Blackbird. It’s a Hatian freighter Legba is sailing back to Haiti. Sonny will lead the squad after Legba’s ring, insistent that Rico come with them. On board the Blackbird, Sonny and Rico shoot it out with Legba’s muscle men, then advance to the bow where Legba stands raving his voodoo. Rico suddenly flashes back to the ceremony, but he can’t see Marie being murdered. Legba was between them the whole time! Just as Rico realizes that Legba didn’t kill her, Legba draws his gun, but Rico shoots first, blowing Legba’s body into the water. He’s not coming back to life this time. Rico searches the boat and finds Marie, drugged but alive. “You’re safe now, Marie.”
 

Many thanks to C.T. Warren, the fellow Vice fan that wrote this synopsis.

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