A strong cast in a quartet of comedy playlets.
In Murray Schisgal's "Natasha Kovolina Pipishinsky," Alan Arkin is a married lawyer who has been stepping out with a young Russian ballerina (Kay Mazzo of the New York City Ballet). Alan King is the friend who advises him against the affair.
In Neil Simon's "A Quiet War," Zero Mostel and Peter Ustinov play a Russian odd couple-a retired general and admiral who wage a war of words over what makes "the perfect lunch."
King portrays a rueful dentist in Herb Gardner's "Word of Mouth." While working on a patient (Christopher Hewett), the dentist laments his failed marriage and his unemployed son, who "found himself three years ago, and has ever since been deeply engrossed in losing himself again."
Ustinov (the hour's director) wrote "Swordplay," a Bicentennial entry set in a New England barn in 1776. Dick Shawn plays a lonesome Revolutionary who sneaks up on a Redcoat colonel (Cyril Ritchard)-for a chat.