Sunday, August 22, 2010

LEVERAGE #311 "The Rashomon Job" Question Post

Yes, it's the Spiderman/party episode of Coupling. Except, you know, with more. Which turned out to be a fairly insane idea once you got down to writing it. Questions and Comments down below.

635 comments:

1 – 200 of 635   Newer›   Newest»
Barb said...

Did i just see the duchess' address as warren ellis road, or am i imagining things?

Anonymous said...

First off, John, best show ever! I have the first 2 seasons on DVD and have watched every ep with commentary. I love that you guys take the time to do that and that you take the time to do this - it makes you that much cooler. Do any of the other writers, producers or cast read or contribute to these blogs?

Anyway, just started watching this ep and I love the way it is written, directed and filmed. It was very fresh, a step away from the normal eps. It's awesome seeing them all before they knew each other and see how each of them work.

No question, just wanted to let you know what a great job I think you are all doing!

andy said...

My most earnest compliments for using a Three Stories style of flashbacks. Not enough shows used interactive flashbacks since House.

Anonymous said...

Please tell me that "share with the class" comment was a nod to OhShinyTomato's South Park vid.

Video Beagle said...

AIEEEE!!! at the commerical break before "Hacker" the video went out, and I just have audio!!! Fix it fix it fix it!!!

Video Beagle said...

The video came back, just when Hardison's story ended back in the "nothing else matters"

It's a racial thing..
Can't a brother enjoy a matzoh ball?

Anonymous said...

***Possible spoilers***

Ok, just hit the commerical break (Half way thru ep) after Parker's "reveal" and all I have to say is I knew she could outsmart all them (except possibly for Nate, cause I'm going to guess he got it from her, but not sure). I fucking love Parker, and the look/smile she and Nate just shared - he actually looked proud of her, and she looked like she knew that and was happy to impress him. Great job everyone - don't even have to get to the end of the ep to say it is already in my top 5!!!!!!!!!!!

DaveMB said...

So after three acts I think that Nate is the security chief of the museum -- of course none of them would recognize him... obviously the blond waitress was Parker...

Sherri said...

Gina Bellman is THE BEST EVAH!

This is such a good 'rest' episode, a chance to see the team just be themselves with nothing hanging in the balance (since the various cons/thefts are all in the past and the outcome doesn't affect the present).

Also, clever way to see them see each other. LOVE THIS.

msd said...

John Rogers - this script was BRILLIANT! Every season I say, "THIS is my favorite episode" then another one comes along. Okay THIS is my favorite episode. I love the layering of characters - by the time Parker tells her story Sophie, Eliot and Haridson are all together. I also thought the fade-in and fade-outs with Nate was wonderful Kudos!! Dean Devlin was right - you deserve an Emmy!

Video Beagle said...

An AIM chat between me and andy:





ANDY: If it turns out Nate is waiting at the bottom of the shaft and catches the dagger, he may trump Batman as a Mastermind.

Scene where Nate catches dagger

ANDY: ...
ME: good call
ANDY: Nate is Batman

andy said...

@Video Beagle, this is why I asked you about the Scooby Doo thing last night, because sometimes my wild ass guesses aren't that wild ass after all.

Video Beagle said...

Which leads us to the question..better Mastermind...Nate or Fred Jones?

Bill Reed said...

Bravo, Rogers. Bravo.

And give my regards to Joe LoDuca, who outdid himself with this episode. Loved the various riffs running in the different vignettes.

carol said...

I'm still laughing at the 'sea roaches' bit.

It totally IS the Spiderman Party episode of Coupling. Only more.

Goes to show how one's perception of an event is stronger than the actual facts of the event.

andy said...

@Video Beagle, I don't know, but...is Scooby the Hitter or the Thief?

antisocialbutterflie said...

I don't really have any real questions. I just wanted to say kudos on a fabulous episode.

Ok, one question do your casting people pull guest stars exclusively from a pool of Star Trek alum? May I request an episode featuring Michael Dorn in season 4?

Video Beagle said...

@andy: He's the Theif...you'll see it when Shaggy makes a big sandwich.

(Velma is obviously the Hacker, Shaggy, with his costume skills, is the Grifter, Daphne is the Hitter...by process of elimination...which she does with prejudice!)

Gina said...

HA! That was hilarious. Loved the changing details, especially Sophie's changing accents, and the way Nate walked with them through the stories. I knew the cocktail waitress was Parker, and I knew Nate was going to have the last laugh somehow. :-)

Only thing I don't understand is, when they met years later, how did none of them recognize that any of the others had been there? You'd think at least one or two would have a good enough memory for faces.

@Video Beagle -- Nate IS Batman! Hee!

Siobhan said...

Best ... episode ... EVER!!!

Modern day Molly Brown said...

Is that Aldis Hodge's Japanese woman with branches painting we see in the episode?

andy said...

@Video Beagle, I think so, Brain, but how would you get the red wig onto Eliot Spencer?

Anonymous said...

Speaking of Batman, I love that the structure is reminiscent of one of my favorite Batman TAS (as well as Batman comic story) "Almost Got 'em", right down to Nate shutting off the lights of the Bar and closing up.

But I think the best part is that you played honest with the audience. An audience member could piece together what actually happened based on the characters in the scene. I like that the security chief's dialogue is the same, but the tone is different and that changes the scene.

IMForeman said...

That was a truly classic episode. And I can see the origin in Coupling's "Remember This."

Of course, I do wonder how Nate and Sophie missed each other, since they knew each by that point. And I wonder if this isn't one of the first big jobs Hardison pulled, given that he would have been real young by that point.

I'm guessing Parker can understand Sophie better now...

Jordan said...

This is non episode related. I was wondering if any of the five cast members could make an appearance on his season's commentary? I like watching the commentary and getting the writers perspective but I would like to hear the actor's too.

Liz said...

Oh man, bravo!! Laughing so hard during parts of the show that I know I'm going to have to go back and re-watch to catch it all.

Eolirin said...

This was a really great episode. Massive props to the writing team. I'd love to see more episodes like this occasionally breaking up the standard villain of the week fare.

Video Beagle said...

@Gina none of them were interfacing enough to imprint. They were all too focused on the job.

And it was Andy who called the Batman...I just wanted to share his brilliance!

Joey C. said...

Are we supposed to take Nate's telling of the story the catch-all "here's what happened?" or is there still some room for debate in that?

I was disappointed Sterling didn't make an appearance this episode (or hasn't this season yet). I got the feeling if he was going to appear, this would be the episode.

so... will we see Sterling this season?

He never loses, after all.

frabjous said...

That was just lovely. No questions, just admiration.

And to be fair, have you ever heard the average Brit try an American accent? Ow ow ow ow ow.

Video Beagle said...

@Joey C.: Nate has the best view of the big picture, so his view is the closest to reality.

Traeia said...

Good GOD that was a good episode.

The ending, which I hope is a transition into King George, wss a hilarious quote straight from that other oil company guy...

The only criticism I would have is that the way the entire crew felt the urge to move to another part of the bar at every break felt very forced to me. Except Nate's movement to the bar. That felt very Nate.

I'm hoping this episode (being shot in two locations) saved some cash for an over-the-top finale!

Aud Arrt said...

No question, except to point out that, even five years ago, the keyboards they encountered had a USB port. If I still drank, my hubby and I would turn the USB port on the keyboard shot into a drinking game.

Gina said...

@Video Beagle: I suppose you're right. Wish I had mad concentration skills like that.

Dawn/StL-MO said...

GENIUS...simply genius!!!

Dawn/StL-MO

andy said...

@Aud Arrt, you want something that'll really cook your noodle? Where did Hardison get a Droid five years ago?

Video Beagle said...

@aud art : My B&W Mac G3, 11 years old, came with a keyboard with usb ports on it.

Sammie323 said...

That was Riley Smith as Sophie's Eliot, right? Did he enjoy trying to be Christian Kane? :)

Zenkitty714 said...

Man, I loved this. Seeing all the characters through the others' eyes was hilarious! As was Sophie's New Zealand comment. Esp. loved Parker skipping across the room like a happy kid when she got the dagger.

I knew Nate would turn out to be the man who hired the guy who sent Eliot after the dagger! Which means, I think, that it was Nate who (inadvertantly) got that guy off Eliot's back.

The Caldwell character was great! Five versions of him, and I wonder if we ever saw the real Caldwell. In Nate's version, none of the crew was concerned about Caldwell, but in their own stories, they found him worrisome. Sophie even said he was maybe as smart as Nate. So I wonder if Nate's version was really the way it was, or if perhaps we had five unreliable narrators. Maybe Caldwell was neither as scary nor as bumbling as he appeared to them. In Nate's story, he was a complete idiot, but he did point out something Nate hadn't thought of. Maybe he was really just, y'know, a normal head-of-security guy, seen the first four times through paranoia and the last time through Nate's rather arrogant POV.

Excellent episode! I'm going to watch this one a hundred times.

Hardy said...

I nominate red as the official color of the leverage ladies. I got all types of side eye from my gf because of my ogling this week at Sophie and last week at Parker.

Leverage has put me in the dog house but I dont care.I still love the show

Anonymous said...

Let's get right down to the important stuff. :) Did Sophie imagine Nate unzipping her or did he imagine doing that to her? Is it a little preview for a future episode?

IMForeman said...

@Jordan TBH, as much as I wouldn't mind hearing from one or more of the cast in a commentary, I think the Leverage Commentaries are far and away the best commentaries on any TV show going right now... except maybe Doctor Who. (If you've never heard a commentary with Russel T Davies, Steven Moffat and David Tennant, you have not lived).

The Leverage commentaries have shown a consistently entertaining and informative blend, filled with people who enjoy their jobs. Contrast with the disappointing cast season 1.5 commentaries of a certain SyFy series now running (Rhymes with Larmate Shoe-Reverse), where I was left begging for a writer and director to chime in, the Leverage commentaries are the standard to which other shows should aspire.

I have been listening to some Psych commentaries, and they are fun... if it weren't so hard to tell who's speaking (they all introduce themselves as various pop-culture figures, except for Dulé Hill), but still not Leverage level.

Am I rambling? I feel like I'm rambling. I'm rambling.

workworkwork said...

So. Much. Fun.

Wow, what a great standalone ep!

So how did you keep everyone from cracking up every time Gina had to roll out a new accent? (I especially loved Sophie's comment to Hardison's story - "I hate you all.")

Gina said...

@workworkwork -- And "I sound like one of the dwarves from 'Lord of the Rings.'" :D

Stacy said...

I'd have to say its John Rogers that is the real Batman. Awesome.

Stacy said...

I do have one question for John, is that the "Sophie in that dress" you tweeted about awhile ago? Because I do have to say, she looked incredible. So did Eliot.

Sarah W said...

We have a North Korea monkey clue! So it's a sapphire monkey . . . that's both a relief and a disappointment. Unless it's a certain breed of monkey?

I have to ask---do y'all have post-it notes all over your writing rooms that say things like, "Eliot---Monkey---North Korea---sapphire?" Or does someone just look up and say, "Hey, this would be a good place to stick a monkey reference as a special treat for Team Eliot." ?

I was half expecting Hardison would produce an image of Sophie and Eliot getting down (euphemism optional), though I realize that he wouldn't have taken\kept a photo of two strangers. . . such a marvelous (if seriously risky) blackmail opportunity lost . . .

Um, ZenKitty? I don't think Nate hired the bad guy who sent Eliot after the dagger. I think Nate was after the bad guy who sent Eliot after the dagger. Or did I miss something big?

evening_shadow said...

I totally loved this ep and kudos for the stand-in actors for mimicking the main cast's mannerisms. As soon as the first Dr. Weatherby bumped into Sophie during her tale, I knew it was Eliot.

Questions, tho:

1. In the Reunion Job, we find out that Hardison originally stole the Iceland money to pay for Nana's medical bills. In the Miracle Job, when he says, "I am so sorry Nana," he raises his gaze upwards and he also speaks of her in the past tense. I took all that to mean Nana had passed away. Yet in your Q&A for Ep 306, you refer to her as being alive to make Parker's dress. Soooo alive or dead?

2. If Nana is indeed alive, does this mean she's met Parker or any other members of the crew?

3. Speaking of Parker, will there be any more Parker/Hardison goodness coming this season? The 'pretzel' scene was excellent and I'd love some follow-up on that.

4. I'm hearing impaired and I was wondering if there might be the possibility Leverage would take a page out of its TV boyfriend's Psych's book and do video commentaries. I can't listen to regular commentaries because it's the episode that's cc'd and not the commentary itself. On Psych S3, the video commentaries were cc'd and I was finally able to get some behind the scenes dish.

Thanks again for some wonderful entertainment!

deanangst said...

EEE I Loved this ep completely!!!
(gives you a hug)
The fact that they were all together but didn't remember each other when they became a team makes me wonder if they will ever try to con aomeone they've already conned in the past. Maybe get caught trying to con a CEO that they had run into when the person was a lowly assistant at another company.

I giggled all the way through the original airing and I'm rewatching now.
This ep was so awesome. I love getting to see the con from each persons point of view.

Riley was perfect as Eliot! A wonderful blend of your writing and I'm sure Riley witnessing CK Flirting with women over the years. Loved Eliot's smerk when he showed Sophie who the good doctor really was. I love seeing Eliot fustrated but I have to admit that cocky smirky Eliot is awesome too.
Also the Scene where Eliot highjacked the doctor and the invite..sigh... you make Eliot dangerous without needing to fight and as a bouns we got gravel voice heaven.

I Loved Sophie's reaction to how the team hears her accent. Parkers version reminded me of the dude from 12 step job.

The fact that neither Eliot or Sophie denied the fact that they were indeed Nasty,Instead looking uncomfortable eliots stutter and nates looka at sophie :) That was made of Win!!!!! And I'm sure you made one group of shippers extremely happy :)

Okay I really really wanted/want the photo Hardison took of Sophie and Eliot to pop up on the video screens at some point just to see Nate's reaction.

It tied everything up nicely that the heist tied back to the man that was after Eliot. (eee the monkey)So Eliot kinda owes Nate in a round about way.

The ending was perfect too..the kids plus mom going off to do together what they failed to do alone with the added bonus of taking out a smarmy CEO..and Dad giving in and going along for the ride. I love the thought of Nate getting his hands dirty at the end but also like to think maybe he's going just to watch his Kids work. Kinda like a dad sitting in the bleachers watching baseball practice.

Thank you so much for such a fun episode and Series.

PS Still hoping for Leverage Books. What can I say, you spoiled me withthe awesome so I'm gonna always want more.

Oona said...

Very entertaining episode. LOVED how Sophie's accent changed until it was gibberish. HYSTERICAL. And nice touch that Nate was the one who heard her as she sounds. Also, the ever expanding knife and the way Hardison saw Eliot's talk in the first aid room.

Kudos to casting again, too - particularly the guy playing Eliot in Sophie's memory and the guy playing Coswell.

Definitely one of the cleverest most fun eps to date!

Anonymous said...

@workworkwork
So. Much. Fun.


Yes.
sigh...

The.Best

for now...

Ned said...

-clap-
-clap-
Well done, sir. Well done.

My question was going to be if you had the Coupling episodes "Remember This" & "9 1/2 Minutes" in mind when you wrote this. Apparently, you anticipated the question

SueN. said...

Oh, my God, I loved this! I am definitely watching the repeat. My whole family was laughing. (You even cheered up cranky teen-angst-queen elder daughter, so, dude, YOU ROCK.)

And, btw, major props for the BP-Hayward poke. Though I did expect the dude to ask for his life back. ;-)

Loved all the POVs regarding each other, though I think Hardison's view of Eliot as hall-stalking, knife-loving psychopath may be my favorite. Is that really how Hardison sees him, or was that another yanking Eliot's chain moment?

Parker's take on Sophie's accent was also a howler. Reminded me of the mumbler from "12 Step." And Sophie's outrage at the various accents was wonderful. "I sound like a dwarf from Lord of the Rings" and "I hate you all." HA!

Let's see, anything else …

Oh! So are we to assume that the team is now going after the dagger again?

I bow at your feet.

Anonymous said...

i think it was you who tweeted that this was gonna be one of our favorite episode and you're right it is one of my favorites :D riley smith was awesome as past!eliot. i loved that almost the whole team mocked sophies accent, actually i loved the whole idea of this episode with everyone having a different side of the same story to tell so, so well done :D

ok my question is: since "eliot" had short hair is this where he starts growing it out so he's not as recognizeable and his enemies can't blackmail him and assassins can't find him?

Jason said...

How far would Hardison go just to satisfy his ego and will it ever get him into serious touble?he did all of that planning just to steal a sword to prove something to other hackers.2.Will we ever get to see Hardisons nana in a flashback type of episode?3.How old would the leverage team be 5 years ago when this took place?

Tori Angeli said...

I usually wait until morning to post anything on the episode, but I have to tell you tonight how fucking awesome this episode was. Maybe my favorite of the series. I had high, high expectations and they were surpassed. I about died every time Sophie's accent changed and the knife got bigger and bigger. Also Eliot talking about walking around in the dark with the knife. And the entire plot. Everything was so tight, I don't have any questions about anything that might have been left out. I understand it all. It was funny and revealing and touching at the end and I LOVE how Nate was just as much of a bastard before his life went to pot. Just loved the whole thing. You really do need an Emmy nod for this one. Man.

Cameron Hughes said...

Hey John, great episode.

1) What did Nate mean by "You all ARE criminals. I have no choice." I thought he was past this.

2) A late question, I know, but I talked to Beth about this and wanted your take. Nate was outraged by the fact that Archie didn't take her in and help her. Said he "ruined" her, but Nate himself could get her help, but instead uses her like a tool. Elaborate on this?

Anonymous said...

i never realized how much riley smith and christian looked alike until this episode lol did kane get riley the job?

Shawne said...

Rarely do things live up to the hype and this episode certainly did. You and your team wove a masterful story and brought it to life in a smart and entertaining way. Thank you for that.

My question is what is the significance of the team drinking with Nate?

Oona said...

Now the questions are coming to mind:

1) where exactly does this fall in Nate's background with Sam and Maggie? I assume Sam is alive since Nate's functional, but he says he's married in a somewhat odd way. Or am I misreading that?

2) The thing about these "perspective" things is that it raises the question of whether anyone is really objective. Are we really supposed to believe Nate's perspective is entirely level? Coswell was just a love sick puppy? Nate going all Columbo at the end? Parker really handing Eliot a giant butcher knife for a trach? (Okay, maybe that last one is not such a stretch . . .)

Anonymous said...

@Cameron Hughes: Nate was outraged by the fact that Archie didn't take her in and help her. Said he "ruined" her, but Nate himself could get her help, but instead uses her like a tool.

Lately I've been thinking a lot about the respect that Nate shows toward Parker. He really, really listens to her when planning jobs and encourages her growing social awareness. From some of the little things that Parker has mentioned about psych evaluations et al., she seems better off being supported by a close trusted friend, even if it is not "professional" help.

Looking forward to hearing what Rogers has to say about this issue.

briddie said...

During Sophie's telling, I wondered if that was supposed to be Eliot. I picked up on the Dr Abernathy thing when I backed up and watched it again. I also wondered if Parker was the waitress, but then thought I must be wrong. I never expected Hardison to be the diplomat, for sure. I also didn't expect Nate to have been involved, duh! Can you say "competence porn"? I see that you can!

briddie said...

@evening_shadowm did Sophie's story call him Weatherby? That could explain why I didn't catch it right off. I'm gonna have to go back and watch it again. Darn the bad luck. ;-D

ThePinkPeril said...

What happened to Billingsley character? He lost the girl, found out he was oblivious to the crimes happening on his watch by his boss, and didn't catch a single bad guy. He needed a happy ending.

Mandy said...

From a past Post-Game, we know that Kane does his own darts shots. Is the same true with Aldis Hodge? Or is it more of an Eliot teaching Hardison type thing?

CtRokJ said...

Ok a few of us were wondering. When we first see Eliot we spotted a number 7 on the back of his vest. What does it stand for? Mickey Mantle or Rule number 7? Also, LOVED the episode. I somehow knew that Nate would be the one to end up with the dagger while someone else in the chat had called someone else first stealing it.

Max Bell said...

*Applauds*

Was especially fond of the ending; Baron Oil... Responsible for the loss of thousands of jobs...

"We care." :D

Will rewatch this presently; want to see if there's any English at all in Parker's version of Sophie's accent besides "ding-a-ling".

Paul Worthington said...

That was some of the most entertaining TV I've seen. Excellent. Thanks, John.

Anonymous said...

un-fucking-believably awesome. you guys went above and beyond on this one. it was funny and unpredictable and amazingly shot - just all in all fantastic. probably my favorite ep yet, although I wouldn't show it to someone who's never seen the show.

couple of questions, as follows: (1) did nate realize that it *was* Sophie before tonight? or any of the rest of them? and (2) why couldn't't parker feel that it was a fake? she was the only one of them to hold it, but she clearly thought it was real.


oh, and (3) where did Sophie's amazing duchess dress come from?

thanks very much!

Erik said...

#### Warren Road, Ellis County, UK

Now that's the way to slip a reference in.

Becs said...

Great episode! I imagine it must have been a trip for the crew to get things just a bit different for each round of story-telling. Was the "Baron Oil" tag different in the original script, or did this all come together after late April?

nonniemous said...

First, I will echo the "Awesome!" kudos everyone's throwing for this episode; the whole family loved it. The 14 yos was sharp and caught that "Dr. Abernathy" was Eliot's alias in the Jailhouse Job; very nice to see it being "recycled" like that.

Kudos, too, that Geek!Hardison would interpret Sophie's accent as a dwarf from LOTR. Your geek credentials are more than untarnished; you get to burnish them for that one. (My two teen-aged geekboys are total Hardison fanboys.)

Finally, a question--but first, the lead up. It's borne from a combination of the anvils you've been dropping in this blog about Eliot's upcoming backstory added to the various seemingly atypical reactions we've seen from him this season (e.g. his reaction when the bodyguard picked up Parker and threw her in Scheherazade.) Given that the guy who sent Eliot after the dagger in the first place was the fence for the thief-curator, was Eliot being set up? Even if he had succeeded in procuring the dagger that night, it would have been the fake and not the real one, leaving open the possibility that this particular "employer" could come after him for delivering that same fake to him. Question 1a) Going off the exchange between Nate and Eliot at the end of the episode, were they acknowledging between themselves just how serious a situation Nate saved him from, either way? (It would also be a nice foreshadowing (if of the *clanging* anvil sort) of the danger in Eliot's earlier exploits coming back to haunt him.)

BTW, one of the resident geekboys has requested Hardison backstory. Will we see more of his background in season 4?

Last but not least, a final kudos on how finely layered this episode was. It's always fun to unravel the story throughout, but the level of finesse varies somewhat. This one was beautifully written and composed--and acted, and produced. Kudos to all of you for a job well done!

Arwen said...

This was a great episode, I love the humor in it.

My question is: how did Baron Oil get the dagger? Did Baron Oil buy it from IYS? Isn't that dealing with stolen goods? Also, I was surprised that in Nate's story, Sophie is only present as they are going down the stairs. Did Nate recognize any of them? He had already chased all of them before. Is that why Nate was present? because he knew that Sophie and the others could probably go after the dagger?

Arwen said...

Oops, I meant to say up the stairs.

Keith R.A. DeCandido said...

Here's what I wrote on my blog about the episode:

Every show, it seems, does a pastiche of Rashomon at some point. Good Times did it. Coupling did it. Star Trek: The Next Generation did it. And, as of tonight, Leverage did it.

But bless his pointy little head, John Rogers made it work. The main reason why is that he didn't just mindlessly ape the structure of my favorite movie in the whole entire world (yes, I'm an Akira Kurosawa geek, and Rashomon's my favorite) and hope for the best. Probably the worst offender of that type was the Star Trek: TNG episode "A Matter of Perspective," which slavishly aped Rashomon's structure -- down to a medium who interprets for the dead person -- but totally missed the point of the film, especially with the final bit that showed what actually happened.

Of course, Leverage did the same thing, but in this case it worked because John didn't ape Rashomon's structure without understanding why Kurosawa used it. Instead, he used the basic concept of the film, but adapted it to a Leverage story. Each act showcased each of the members of the team magnificently, but also showcased how they each view the other team members.

I have to admit to seeing much of it coming, but that did nothing to curtail my enjoyment. I knew that the "doctor" was Eliot, that the blond waitress was Parker, and that either the diplomat or the security guy that "Dr. Ipcress" spoke to was Hardison. And I knew that Nate would win in the end, because he is (as one guy on Rogers's "Kung Fu Monkey" blog said) Batman. *chuckle*

What I didn't see coming was one particular reveal in Nate's segment. I had spent the entire episode thinking how cool it was that John Billingsley -- who specializes in playing nebbishes (even his psycho on Cold Case was a nebbish rotated a bit to the left into evil) -- was playing a total badass.

So I was totally caught off-guard when we got to Nate's bit, and the head of security suddenly became -- well, John Billingsley. *laughs* And none of the dialogue changed. It was a lovely insight into the others, because as thieves/criminals, they all view the security chief of the museum they're robbing as being a threat and don't really pay attention to anything beyond that. Nice little psychological insight.

Overall, a fantabulous episode. Bravo to all and sundry!

gwangung said...

So I wonder if Nate's version was really the way it was, or if perhaps we had five unreliable narrators.

Heh. BIngo. What was the real story in Rashomon?

Heh.

whimseyrhodes said...

Very interesting job with this episode. While it wasn't my favorite out of season 3 so far, I did love seeing the way everyone's stories differed: 'Yours, Mine and The Truth.'

Especially loved Hardison and Eliot's banter in the first aid room, and Sophie's hilarious speaking in the Parker version.

My question(s) are not episode related, but I hope you'll answer them anyway. Do you (or any of the cast/crew) ever read any of the fanfiction on the internet? You guys obviously know it exists, from comments/spoofs done on the extras of S2. What do you think about it? Does any of it offend? Do any of them spark ideas for new storylines?

Ian said...

Brilliant episode. A Matter of Perspective was one of my favorite episodes of TNG. It's a great format. I'm almost surprised Frakes didn't direct this one.

Billingsley was perfect for the role.

Ral said...

No whinging or questions. Just wanted to stop in and tell you this episode was absolutely fucking amazing!

Tomorrow is my birthday, and I couldn't have asked for a better present!

Off to watch it again...

Anonymous said...

The scripts and stories just keep getting better! Leverage is the best show on television! Keep up the great work!

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to say, loved the episode and all it's little in-jokes. Gina and Christian's mocking of their own accents in particular were brilliant, and I loved that Parker seemed craziest from her own point of view.

I get the feeling the new theft will turn out to be like team-building laser tag with random alliances and double-crossings, and everyone going out to eat afterwards to boast about their bits.

bartcal said...

Aldis Hodge asked (prior to the show airing) if we could guess who stole the dagger - I figured it had to be Nate in his insurance role, but couldn't figure out how he would "steal" it, since he was not a thief at that point. You kept me guessing throughout the show - thank you!

I loved the character interactions throughout and wish we could see the chaos that ensued as the team tries steals the dagger back from the idiot CEO. I'm guessing they eventually have to team up that is...but can envision them running into each other throughout the night, much live 2-live crew.

Great episode - I enjoyed it very much.

Calla said...

This was quite the wild ride! A very enjoyable episode!

You said it was based on an episode of Coupling - why would you say that when THAT episode of Coupling was based on the classic film "Rashoman"? Clearly, you know that, because you put that name as the title - but did you just figure that more people would get the concept if you explained it in terms of the coupling episode or was there something else going on there?

I did love not just how the details in each flashback were altered, but how they each perceived the others differently. Everyone hearing a different accent from Sophie, Parker handing over a different, bigger knife each time, Eliot being charming and competant in Sophie's flashback to down right wild-eyed, unpredicable and potantially a serial killer in Hardison's flashback.

The security guard was the best character, though, because his dialogue was practically the same each time, but altered in tone and delivery depending upon who he was talking to in which flashback - that was some very well done direction AND acting!

So, is Parker the BEST thief of the bunch? Or is the point that they will all trip each other up if they're in the same space but not working together (visions of them messing up in the museum in the Second David job?

Very enjoyable episode!! Definitely one of the funnest to date! Thanks to you, the cast, and the crew for doing your jobs so well and for doing all the extras like twitter and blogs!

Kevin said...

Congratulations to the Leverage team, this and two live crew are now my favorites.

Video Beagle said...

@krad: I spent most of the episode not recognizing John Billingsley, until he turned into John Billingsley in Nate's tale.

Richard Howe said...

Loved the ep, but I have a completely unrelated question. With all this talk of Nate being a bastard, and having finally seen his dear old dad, I'm left wondering: was Nate a good dad? I know he loved his son, but that alone doesn't make you a good dad (though it certainly helps).

Dawn/StL-MO said...

@CtRokJ
… When we first see Eliot we spotted a number 7 on the back of his vest. What does it stand for? Mickey Mantle or Rule number 7?

To me it actually looked like the tee he wore in either the taping of the House Rules video or his coach “BREWER” #7 jersey from Fairy Godparent’s Job.

Dawn/StL-MO

Coren said...

Ok, not parsing through 90 some odd questions to see if this was asked.

Two things

One, how are these works of art being scanned? You obviously can't slap a barcode on or implant an RFID chip (even if RFID was that advanced five years ago)

Two, so the dagger was gonna go back to Gladstone when it got scanned, but then Sophie changed the shipping address. But then Hardison hacked it so it was going to stay put - so why was the nice box which the dagger would be kept in still sent, without the dagger?

Rebecca said...

You guys keep raising the bar, and I love it, but it's gotta make things difficult in the writing room. How do you top something like this? Wow.

Everyone was incredibly wonderful this week, as usual, but Gina with the accents and Parker with the knives kept the LOLs coming. What I really want to know is, was Gina actually speaking those last undecipherable sounds Parker thought she heard, or was that distortion put in during post production?

Congratulations on a super fabulous episode, and thanks again for your answers.

Anonymous said...

Great episode! Really enjoyed it!
It remembered me of an X-files story when Scully and Moulder told the same story of their view.
Guess you had lots of fun at the set.

My questions: There was at least one of Aldis' paintings on the wall? I thought I recognized the red one...

And isn't ist possible to produce the DVDs regioncode free? Can't wait for my DVDs (ordered Season 1 two months ago - thanx to the regioncode I still have to wait)

Thanx for that great story.
And keep on! More! More! :-)

Maya said...

This is definitely one of the best this season! Great writing and directing, acting, everything. Gina was amazing pulling all those accents. I love the way you write Sophie, that's why I'm always looking forward to your episodes. You really let her shine and Gina delivers each time. She was hilarious!

I have a few questions. Why is Nate wearing a ring/wedding band on his right hand, middle finger in the bar? I don't think I've ever seen Nate wearing jewelry before. Does it have a special meaning (for Nate/Sophie or Nate) or is it random and we shouldn't give it a second thought? Did Nate know that it was Sophie going up the stairs in that fabulous dress right before him and Coswell? We do know that Sophie had no idea he was there as the insurance agent 'cause none of them did. What happened to the roses that were meant for Sophie in the first place? I was hoping Nate would give them to Sophie in the end. Was Nate projecting a bit of himself and his feelings for Sophie in the real version of Coswell? They're both into Sophie, they live for work and Nate might realize he shouldn't let her get away...

I have a theory about Eliot and Sophie flirting in the past. I don't think the dance or the flirting ever happened. For one, we know Nate's version is the correct one and he didn't see any flirting between them or the dance. I think Hardison was trying to get Eliot and Sophie into trouble with Nate 'cause they were all happy he had to confess that he didn't get the dagger after all. Plus, Eliot said that Hardison's lying to Nate. That was funny, they're all aware that Nate and Sophie have something going on and that you do not mess with that. Ha! Even Eliot, the hitter, was afraid of Nate there! Anyway, Hardison and Eliot always tease each other and we know some of the things got exaggerated and misinterpreted by each team member. Am I right about this?

So psyched about next week's Sophie episode! Finally!

LarryFleming said...

This was the most fun I have had to date on Leverage. We could see where the story was going early on, but seeing it from everyone's point of view was precious.
Is that what those from the UK really think about us and how we perceive accents? Of course Americans love accents. (Gina was great)

Liz said...

Looks like someone else has already asked about the sapphire monkey in this episode, and whether it is the "monkey" we first heard about (memorably!) back in the Two Horse Job. I'd like to hear about that, too. Either way, just wanted to comment that the tie between Nate and Eliot's part of the story in Rashomon was a nice payoff and led to a cool, if brief, moment between the two characters at the end.

Jane said...

Absolutely loved this episode, the cleverness (of the script and the production) and the banter of the team was an awesome return to the feel of the first season.

It was good to see that while Eliot was more ruthless, that thug he used as a shield could have easily been killed, he still used violence as an appropriate response, throwing the knife not until the other thug threw his.

@Coren I'm guessing Eliot must have delivered his van load, otherwise all of the other artifacts in the van would have gone missing as well, and the shipment was sent.

Questions:
The shipment arrived in England without the mug, did Eliot keep it?

Will there be any plot inconsistencies because this episode was moved forward?

It was great to see Riley as Eliot, wasn't expecting that at all. But will this hinder any future appearance by him in the series?

dyluke said...
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dyluke said...
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TayaR said...

Really enjoyed this episode (especially Eliot's psycho lurking-in-the-dark-halls-with-a-knife moment).

Are we ever going to meet Hardison's Nana? Because that'd be awesome.

dyluke said...

love the ep John, its one of my faves now..keep 'em comin! it gets better and better..

question: is the sapphire monkey the same monkey in the two-horse job?

Anonymous said...

Most amazing, from the NLs, hope to see more episodes with this quality upcomming weeks.

Sara said...

I read the summary for this episode and said out loud to myself, "Oh, I'm going to like this episode."

I appreciate being proven so very right! :D

Completely echoing all the "fucking amazing" comments, because damn. I love this kind of storytelling/narrative style--it's one of my all-time favorites--and you pulled it off so marvelously. Definitely a top 3 episode, possibly my favorite overall. Bravo!

P.S. Also? Thank you for Sophie in that dress.

Anonymous said...

Great episode!, nice writing. Hope more episodes with the same quality will be upcomming.

Maya said...

Wait, Sophie could've heard Nate talking when he was going up the stairs behind her. She'd recognize his voice. It's possible they both knew about the other being there that night.

Anonymous said...

Sara said
P.S. Also? Thank you for Sophie in that dress.

Echoing that sentiment. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

@arwen, I thought it could be that IYS needed negative publicety for the oil company, so it gave the dagger away (not selling it, as a crime), and then working the media, to soften up the bailout they have to pay for the oil spill.

Anonymous said...

Is it Christmas yet ? Santa John and his happy bunch of elves, please keep on entertaining us this much ! Thanks for the early present !

Brilliant episode, very clear despite the obvious difficulty to write the trick (I guess my brain would have imploded).

I really liked to see Nate behind every member of the team during the reception ("shoo..." cute!), specially the "double-mirrored Nate" with Eliot.(nice shot and it seemed to me somehow sad ?)

Just one thing bothered me: Coswell being so stupid in the end ! Too stupid. A bit harsh for such a great actor ! (and character)

You should call your working team "The Good Job", cause you did !

Red said...

Loved the character study in this ep. And having rewatched the first 2 seasons for the commentary (thanks for those!), it seems that this was the only episode where Eliot and Sophie got physical. We also got a lot of Hardison/Eliot....and the slash fans go wild!

Definitely going to have to rewatch it and looking forward to to the DVD commentary. For this particular ep, I would love to hear the actors included in the commentary.

Thanks for doing the Q and A, the blog, esp about the writing process, and for the show.

RevTrask said...

I was really looking forward to this episode. Bought a new box of Little Debbie's just for the occasion.

Once again, GF prevented me from tuning in at 9 EST. (Seriously...reruns on HGTV? Woman has no priorities). Drank a *lot* of coffee to stay up til midnight when I knew I had to get up early Monday morning. Thanks to the coffee, I had to sneak up the creaky stairs to the bathroom at every commercial break. Had to make a second trip upstairs at the mid-point because I'd forgotten to bring down the Little Debbie's.

Sat on an ottoman, wrapped in a blanket, a foot from the TV so that I could hear with the sound turned down low. Repeatedly had to stuff the blanket in my mouth to keep from laughing too loudly.

When the ep ended, I realised that I had hoovered *3* double Swiss Rolls, had chocolatey blanket lint in my teeth, had done incalculable damage my 50-yr old bladder, was severely sleep-deprived...

...and had watched the funniest episode of "Leverage" ever. Totally worth it. Big thanks to all the Leveragers!

PS- Another episode with a skinny, pale guy in his underwear? Subtext?

Maya said...

Watching it again. Sophie and Eliot dancing definitely didn't happen. The scene of Hardison explaining the power surge to Nate was shown a second after the dance was shown. So, in Hardison's version they were dancing when the power surge happened. But if you look at every other version of the events the power surge happened when they were just talking. In all the versions, the power surge happened before Hardison almost choked with the shrimp so I think I'm right, this was the same power surge, it wasn't like different timing of it happening.

Anonymous said...

Hilarious and superb episode! I figured out half of the Nate twist about a third through, but that didn't spoil anything the way it wound up. Funniest moment for me was after Eliot's garbling of Sophie's accent, she switched her story and he came flying in with the beer bottle! Second funniest was Joe LoDuca's music cue with "Rule Britannia" in it (because we all know, from myriad spy shows and "Austin Powers", that any shot from Britain needs that music over it).

I do have a question, though. In the first two stories (Sophie's and Eliot's), John Billingsley says "I saw my first Duchess upstairs -- she -- you--". I don't completely understand the "first Duchess" reference. Was that the line as written? In these two stories, he's not coming on to Miss Ipcress (or her file :-), and he's not trying to impress her with culture, so if he was trying to say that she looked like the Duchess (as she did!), I think he would have expressed himself somewhat differently. What's the story with that, if anything?

Also, there were a number of different pronunciations of the name of the dagger: "Aku-AH-bi"; "ah-KOO-bi"; "ak-WAH-bi"; etc. Do these just not get caught during filming? Is it felt that no one will care? Or were these intentionally left in this time for humorous purposes? (You're not the only show to have such a problem. The best was an episode of ST:TNG where a Klingon name was pronounced three different ways - BY THE SAME CHARACTER, Picard!)

Finally, TNT stated "with only two episodes left THIS SEASON". Are they considering 314, 315, and 316 part of NEXT season?? And is there a release date set for the next set of DVDs yet? Can't wait for the commentaries, since your show's commentaries are truly the BEST!

Michael said...

so .. apart from this being the funniest episode so far, really great, I'm not entirely sure I got how the whole thing was supposed to really have happened.

_if_ Nates story is the outermost shell, I have to wonder why any box at all was delivered outside the museum for Elliot and Sophie to be fooled by? I mean we are given to understand that Hardison changed the database entry to make it say "vault" instead of "owner" for the dagger-item. So why was there a box? Why would the museum-clerks put an empty case (well ok it contained a mug) in a box and have it delivered to England?

Maybe I missed something ..

Patrick said...

This was the most fun I had in an original TV episode this whole year. Not questions here, just a big grin.

Anonymous said...

What a great episode, it had me laughing from start to finish! Two of my most favorite parts: When Parker couldn't understand Sophie, and Hardison's interpretation of Eliot in the examine room. You guys always do a fabulous job and this episode was by far one of my all time favorites!

Anonymous said...

John,
This would be the best example (ever) of, "Nobody ever changes the channel because something is too funny."
One of my favorite movies is Clue, and this was a really great homage to it. Excellent job by all of the cast and crew!! (You are forgiven for the gone fishing job...just kidding).

24jg13 said...

Before I even read a comment, THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for a wonderfully hilarious episode. Just loved the way they all saw each other 5 years ago. I certainly hope on the dvd there are plenty of outtakes, seems this episode was made just for that. Loved Riley sneaking in there without any word ahead of time. I love that you guys bring in actors who have personal ties to the people on the show.

I do have one most pressing questions, can't we get the other three episodes now instead of December. Even October would be better and have the dvd released for Christmas, that would be the best gift possible, can't you convince the powers that be at TNT to do that. I know we all would love it.

and as usual thanks for doing this.

talea said...

Best ep ever! Called it on the preview and the whole enchilada didn't disappoint.

As others have mentioned, loved the layered writing.

Anonymous said...

I know a lot of people are wondering how the team could have run into each other in the past and not remembered each other 2 years later, but none of them knew the others were a significant part of the crime nor did they spend a lot of time/lengthy conversation with one another, so they weren't really that "memorable" in each others eyes (although, if Eliot and Sophie were really dancing like they were in Hardison's viewpoint, you would think they would remember each other). They are all (or at least use to be) very self involved, so they really only see themselves, not so much the faces around them. Case in point - everyone's version has themselves "beating/outsmarting" the hard ass, super intelligent security head and staff (so as to make them seem that much more of an expert and best at their craft), when in reality, I probably could have outsmarted the museum security staff.
Loved the knife getting bigger, and Gina's accents - along with Sophie's frustration at everyone else's variation of what she sounds like. I especially loved how Nate used it all in the end to set up/plan a job, and then jumped the bar to tag along! Great ep!!

Anonymous said...

Are there going to be outtakes and deleted scenes available on the season 3 DVD? There weren't any deleted scenes on season 2 (at least not the way they were on Season 1's DVD).

Anonymous said...

Haven't seen this commented on yet or maybe I missed it - "present" Nate unzipping "memory" Sophie's dress. The mind boggles - is that all in Sophie's brain or a meeting of the brains?

Plus, I LOVE Sophie lately. She had gotten a little drippy at times with always being the protective "mom" and pining for Nate/bitching at Nate and her identity crisis. THIS Sophie is way closer to the funny, flirtatious, sexy Sophie from the pilot. YAY!

In fact, her POV may have been my favorite. Eliot as attractive but a bit skeevy and totally hitting on her and then his (over)dramatic heroics were perfectly Sophie. Hardison's was great, too - perfectly over the top.

So much great comedy in this one all around, though. Loved this ep! Can't believe there are only two more until December! Are you sure you can't just go to a 52 episode season? I mean come on, how hard can that be? Lightweight. (totally kidding don't kill me)

Ally

Gina said...

As a new fan (I've seen the last five episodes on TV and the first three via Netflix), I think I'm missing something. How come there's so much Nate hate on here? Has he been a jerk and I haven't seen it? Because to me he seems pretty cool. (Of course, maybe that's just because I love Tim Hutton . . .)

ChelseaNH said...

Mai hed asploeded frum awl teh awsum n ai ken onnlee rite lyk dis nao.

Stacy said...

@Gina

Nobody hates Nate, on the contrary we love him, we're just commenting on the fact that he's been a real dick at times. Yes, you have missed a lot.

la_ma_ said...

This will be your easiest answer session yet as it seems everyone has taken some time to write in only to say, "Exceptional Ep!" It was great. Just absolutely fun to watch. And since we've viewed them as a team for so long, I was beginning to wonder how their individual superpowers would work. Parker saying, at the power surge, "Somebody just engaged a whole new security system". Awesome. Hardison's wimpy-man's view of the blade. And Sophie's accents--that was just actual laugh out loud fun. Not a high-intensity ep, but honestly, it felt like a family reunion--one of the few and far between where you actually have a good time. This ep made them 'our' characters. Thank you. Only question, is it 'Jon' or 'John' because when I'm telling people who the real Batman is--I wanna get it right.

Anonymous said...

@Gina - Nate is suppose to be an utter bastard - according to John Rogers, himself, on here and on the DVD commentaries. I highly recommend, once you've caught up, watching all the eps w/ the commentaries.

Anonymous said...

@Gina

You'll see...

Anonymous said...

When I saw the title, I was pumped. When handsome doctor Wes Abernathy came up and I realized "oh crap, it's Eliot, and Sophie remembers him handsomer", this became my favorite episode.

Speaking of: man, it says a lot about the characters that even when they're misremembered as handsome doctors and fat art officials, they've got enough of a voice that a viewer can figure out who's who.

Man, thanks for an excellent ep.

Question-wise: did the crew misremember the museum security chief as being super-competent to give themselves a better story, or did they just misplace the invisible hand of Nate in the proceedings?

MosNoogaMara said...

I've never posted here because my questions get asked by others and I don't want to clutter up the blog, but I absolutely had to squee over this ep in public! This is absolutely the best episode of the season so far! I have a weekly Leverage watching party at my house, and we were all in tears we were laughing so hard. I wish I had a DVR so I could watch it again, instead of waiting until next Sunday to watch it On Demand. I love Sophie's accents, and the bits with Eliot and the knife. We figured out who was who before it was revealed, but it was still fun. I'm glad we got a little more background about Eliot's monkey. Kudos to everyone in Leverageland for such a fantastic episode!

Lydia said...

Best episode ever!!!!!! This episode just proved my point that Leverage is one of the greatest TV shows ever. It's my new favorite episode, I've already watched it several times. LOVE how everybody's version is a bit different - like the knife getting bigger and bigger with each telling. And thank you for throwing in Eliot's "it a very distinctive ____"! The "I smell peppermint" comment reminded me of the Maltese Falcon Job (or maybe it was the Three Strikes Job) when Hardison and Eliot were playing cops and at Bonano's house and the deputy watching the house had made himself some soup. Loved seeing Riley playing a younger Eliot, even if it was literally only for a minute (I totally called that he was Sophie's Eliot). Eliot's version of Sophie's accent was too freakin' hilarious! Nice touch how Sophie wanted to go back and change her story so that Eliot looked like a bumbling redneck!

1) Eliot wearing the number seven again (like he did in the Fairy Godparents Job), is that a shoutout to Kane's "Rule #7"? 2) The Eliot Sophie remembers has short hair, but in everyone else's version, Eliot has his ponytail, which begs the question, at least in my mind, did Eliot have short hair five years ago, or was it long like it is now? 3) Did Aldis throw his own dart, like Kane did in the Bottle Job?

Anonymous said...

We saw the Dr. Wes Abernathy persona in the Jailhouse Job. Is this where he came up with it for the first time?

Gina said...

Hmm . . . well, I'll probably still think Nate's cool, even after I get all caught up, 'cause he's still Tim Hutton. :-) Thanks for the explanations.

@la_ma_: Did you notice how Hardison and Parker saw the blade the same way? Only I think he was scared of it and she thought it was awesome. :D

MacSTL said...

Most excellent job! This is by far my favorite episode ever.

I do have a couple of questions however.

1) Hardison & the choking. We saw Sophie drug the champagne. Did Eliot really take that glass? But Hardison is not really alergic to shrimp -- so what did he choke on?

2) How did Eliot happen to pick the car of a guy whose clothing with fit him so well? We need to see a con where this trips the team up!! (In fact - Eliot did it twice in this and Hardison did it once.)

and now for the unabashed cheering--

1) Eliot's comment to the thug about being honest to help him improve - priceless

2) Riley - adorable

3) Sophie's accents - awesome

4) Sophie's 'I hate you all' - classic

5) Including Aldis' painting - lovely

6)The directing -- I found myself oooo and aaawwwwing several times.

I spent 20 minutes this morning talking with a co-worker in another state about this episode. We are both impressed by the nice acting subtleties the cast exuded in this episode. Can't wait for the commentary on this one!

Thank you again!

Odie said...

I'm not so sure about Nate's version of the story being any more accurate than the others. After all, wouldn't he think of himself as far more intelligent than the museum's head of security?

RMR said...

First off: you are amazing! and so is everyone else who works on Leverage. I'm really glad I got into this show (bit hesitant at first) and I have to say last night's episode was definitely one of the best. I especially loved Parker's excitement over the thought of cutting open Hardison's neck with a giant knife! You just don't get that kind of crazy nowadays.

Denita said...

@Gina

Tim Hutton is cool. :)

Nate, on the other had, is somewhat of a mean, bad-tempered, obnoxious, insufferable know-it-all. He's really quite arrogant a lot of the time.

You'll see what I mean when you catch up.

Keith R.A. DeCandido said...

Odie just posted what I was about to post....

Just as the Four Musketeers were motivated to make Billingsley's security chief be as brilliant and nasty and awesome as possible so their thievery would be that much more impressive because they got one over on him -- Nate's equally motivated to make the security chief as incompetent as possible to make himself look like Batman.

It's perfectly possible that Nate wasn't the one who started this, but Billingsley's character. He may have alerted IYS to the odd goings-on and brought Nate in (or brought IYS in, who sent Nate). One clue: the security chief was the one who mentioned that, if they put the dagger back, the target would bolt, and only then does Nate decide to keep it reported as stolen. Change Billingsley's tone of voice in that scene back to what it was in the other stories, and he becomes a bigger, smarter player in the whole thing.

Also, c'mon -- you really think the knife just literally fell into his hands? That's less plausible than Sophie's accent in Parker's story.... :)

Stacy said...

@denita

Tim Hutton is also still very very dreamy. Hard to believe he's 50. **sigh**

Gina said...

@MacSTL -- Oh yeah, Eliot's comment to the thug was priceless!!

DLee said...

I get the impression that Nate's version of Coswell was colored by his perspective too. Where everyone else's risk assessment pegged Coswell as threatening to break their respective covers, Nate saw someone whose distractedness/plain ol' incompetence potentially put IYS-insured assets at risk.

Then again, even if objectively true I can't lay too much blame at Coswell's feet. That lab coat is entirely unfair.

I will admit, I fell for the Coswell=Nate red herring myself, even for the first half of Nate's story (I figured Nate talking in the flashbacks was setup for it). It was only when Coswell was asking if Nate was married that I had to take that off the table. Was Nate supposed to be Coswell in an early draft, or did I just get played like a $4.5m violin?

gwangung said...

I get the impression that Nate's version of Coswell was colored by his perspective too. Where everyone else's risk assessment pegged Coswell as threatening to break their respective covers, Nate saw someone whose distractedness/plain ol' incompetence potentially put IYS-insured assets at risk.

Well, incompetence compared to Nate or Sterling. Not that many GOOD security officers would twig to the fact that FOUR different master thieves were attacking at one. Occam's Razor would have most people treat it as one person, which would lead most anybody else to the wrong conclusion (thus making them look incompetent to the guy who figured it out).

Denita said...

@Stacy

Yes, he is. :)

You know, as a woman, I've always found it kind of annoying how some men age so well. You know what I mean?

Take Christian, for instance. The older he gets, the better he looks.

So not fair.

Bardic Lady said...

As usual, great job. I still love Bank Shot Job best, but as you know, I am an incurable Berg fangirl.

Based on other questions/comments to the post, I'm assuming you'll address whether we're to accept Nate's version of events as a master version or not, especially since it involved a number of events for which he wasn't present (Creswell/Ipkriss, Creswell and Riley in the closet).

I found it interesting and possibly telling that Sophie, Eliot, and Hardison each ended their tale with having the dagger and then had to fess up to not actually getting it, while in Parker's version, she knew she ended up with no dagger. Is that a comment on Parker's ability to lie or is she secure enough to admit when she's been foiled?

In terms of Hardison's story, his stated mission was to beat the security system. Though he didn't end up with the dagger, surely there must have been other valuables in the vault for him to take as proof? (Also, I love seeing the vault being reused, having seen it in person)

I do find it odd that Sophie in particular wouldn't remember Eliot's face, given that, as a grifter, people are her strong point. Is there a good reason why none of them remember having met before?

Thank you for the return of "It's a very distinctive..." I still maintain that we need a Leverage t-shirt that says "It's a very distinctive...show."

Thank you, thank you.

Yadetsie said...

Awesome episode!!! For some reason I feel that it has a lot of outtakes of laughter and silliness.

Two things are bothering me:

The episode is based on 5 years ago, but why does Hardison have such a fancy phone?

Wouldn't Parker notice that the dagger was fake or is she just an expert on diamonds and really shiny things?

Anyway thanks for taking the time of reading this and possibly replying.
Kudos to Gina on the horrible accents of herself.

Anonymous said...

@DLee About red-herrings...yeah, I was hoping that Nate was the car-jacked guy, and that he'd have to break out of the trunk and steal clothes before reporting to the party as the IYS rep. We all know that Sterling likes trunks, but I can envision Nate just being really pissed off at the time delay.

As for Nate making Coswell too love-sick and how reliable his version was...I read it as growing out the clue Nate had to work with--the roses. He realized that instead of catching on to either of Sophie's covers, poor Coswell had a crush on Ipcress. So far, so good. The theory explains Coswell's dialogue. But by making Coswell all swoony in his version, Nate was also teasing Sophie a bit...she had been so pleased that the owner of the dagger was under her spell, but hey--she never noticed that the security head was mooning over her mousy character?? Sophie's charm has a blast radius...

24jg13 said...

Oh just thought of a questions concerning Damian Moreau. Please tell me you either got Armand Assante or Robert Wagner. Either would be perfect....

Vanessa (fighting cook) said...

Great job John Rogers! So proud of you for breaking this episode!

Radagast said...

One thing bugs me - would Hardison-five-years-younger really be able to pull off being a government minister? We saw him as he looks today, of course, but in the actual situation, he'd be a tad less mature. And I doubt he'd look like the memory Sophie and Eliot had of the 'minister'.

Loved Billingsley as Coswell, both versions of him; I knew there was more to his 'find that doctor!' bit from the first run, but I didn't guess it would shake out as it did.

Great stuff all around, thnks for a memorable episode!

Odie said...

@Keith: Are you inside my brain? I had the same though about the 'convenience ' of the dagger dropping into Nate's hand. (Although it certainly made me laugh!)

Oh. A question: What was the security guy about to do that made Eliot's flying tackle necessary?

Kathleen said...

truly great episode, def top 5. The show team should be really proud.

nice Gutman ref.

IMForeman said...

@Andy, regarding Hardison having a Droid five years ago... it's not a Droid. It's an HTC phone, but it's still an anachronism because that form factor is only about 2 years old. Still... Hardison was embellishing the level of his equipment.

24jg13 said...

@Sarah W said...Um, ZenKitty? I don't think Nate hired the bad guy who sent Eliot after the dagger. I think Nate was after the bad guy who sent Eliot after the dagger. Or did I miss something big?

Eliot mentioned the guy after him was sent to prison soon after and he hadn’t thought about him until then, my understanding was Nate got him arrested which took the heat off Eliot, hence the little nod to Nate from Eliot.

@CtRokJ said...
Ok a few of us were wondering. When we first see Eliot we spotted a number 7 on the back of his vest. What does it stand for? Mickey Mantle or Rule number 7?

Got to be RULE. NUMBER. SEVEN

@Gina said...
As a new fan (I've seen the last five episodes on TV and the first three via Netflix), I think I'm missing something. How come there's so much Nate hate on here? Has he been a jerk and I haven't seen it? Because to me he seems pretty cool. (Of course, maybe that's just because I love Tim Hutton . . .)

No Nate hate, we just call it the way we see it. Nate has done some bastardly things over the 3 seasons and pushed the limits quite often, but, he is after all the reason they came back.

@MacSTL said...
1)Hardison & the choking. We saw Sophie drug the champagne. Did Eliot really take that glass? But Hardison is not really alergic to shrimp -- so what did he choke on?

Hardison wasn’t really choking, he needed to cause a diversion so was pretending which made Eliot cutting his throat open even more terrifying.

As for whose story was the real one, I would suggest add all 5 together and somewhere in the middle is the truth.

andy said...

@IMForeman, first, you have a better eye than me. I was struggling to identify is as "not an iPhone" and Droid was all I could think of. Good show. Second, I believe the embellishment theory is a good one on the grounds he stuck with his, seemingly, favorite brand of HTC. I know Parker and Sophie use HTC Excaliburs and I believe Hardison used an HTC Wing in both of the two Davids jobs. So, yes, good eye and an even better explanation!

Gina said...

@Denita -- I hear that!!

keydjes said...

Svanberg at BP acutually used a phrase that sometimes is used in Sweden:

"In Sweden we often say “den lilla människan” (lit: “the little human”) when we talk about someone or a group of people who either is up against larger forces or odds, or simply have been unfortunate enough to be caught in the middle between (much) bigger and more powerful players/forces/events"

How ever, when Svanberg used the phrase it got terribly wrong. "Little/small people" is not the same.

Loved how they all heard a different accent from Sophie.

And anything ref. to Rule nr. 7 is fine with me. I think that that is a great rule, as I am a woman :-)

Video Beagle said...

@Anonymous about the "first duchess line" Read it like "I just saw my first rock star!" He was impressed by seeing royalty, and then was trying to tell Ipcriss, "I saw a fairytale princess just now, and you're way prettier than she is."

@KRAD: Good catch about Coswell pointing out that they can't reveal the scam...why you should be writing Leverage..or Leverage novels or comics.

@Rogers: KRAD should be writing Leverage, or Leverage novels or comics.

@24jg13 Ok, this is the way Elliot's story worked out:
The curator would steal items and sell them to a SUPERVILLAIN, replacing them with fakes. He'd then have the SUPERVILLAIN steal the fake so he could make an insurance claim. They'd split the money.

The SUPERVILLAIN, this time, hired Eliot to steal the fake. Eliot owed him, he needed someone to do the job, and it would square things up so he could employ Eliot again in the future.

Nate (or Coswell) twigged to the scam, and then caught the curator as seen in the show. The curator rolled over on the SUPERVILLAIN (small fish giving away the big fish) and Nate, IYS, and the cops put the SUPERVILLAIN in jail (which wound up freeing Han to make the kessel run...I mean Elliot to go bang a stripper).

Video Beagle said...

I hesitate to ask...

Who's Riley and what's Rule #7?

Video Beagle said...

Ah:

"Well rule number 7 says don't touch the women
But they can grab whatever they want to"

As google autofilled "christian kane rule 7" , a LOT of people must be looking this up :D

Anonymous said...

Forgot one thing, sorry !
Did Eliot REALLY flirt with Sophie ?? (Well, rather Sophie with Eliot)
Even Hardison saw that !
What really happened between these two ? Nate did not seem very jealous (nowadays), am I wrong ?

Stacy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Heronymus said...

Here's a not-related-to-the-episode question:

Jon, you've said in several media that you believe there are a finite number of stories to be told with this crew (a point with which I agree, btw); is that number something you can share, at least in the ballpark? Or is that a "we don't say the name of the Scottish Play" kind of thing?

Stacy said...

**steps cautiously away from @videobeagle as the pack of Kaniacs descend**

Dude, I'm so sorry. It was nice knowing you.

Video Beagle said...

@Stacy:

What? Are you saying Elliot doesn't bang strippers?

ChelseaNH said...

@Video Beagle: The curator would steal items and sell them to a SUPERVILLAIN, replacing them with fakes. He'd then have the SUPERVILLAIN steal the fake so he could make an insurance claim. They'd split the money.

Not curator. Owner. Owners enjoy insurance payouts. Curators hopefully enjoy their work, because the material benefits are somewhat lacking.

Video Beagle said...

@ChelseaNH ...but it was the Boston Museum of Art or something..not a private gallery...surely things like that are owned by the city, not just some guy in a beard?

Anonymous said...

@videobeagle - Riley is a reference to Riley Smith - he played the Dr. Wes Abernathy (who was really Eliot) in Sophie's original version of the story. It is reported that he and Christian kane are good friends.

Rebecca said...

@video beagle, many of those items in the exhibit were loaned to the museum for display and then returned to the owners after that particular exhibit was over. The thefts of the dagger were on the last night of the exhibit.

Hogan said...

Fine fine episode.

Somebody please tell me: world's greatest what now? I couldn't make it out.

Video Beagle said...

@Rebecca: right..got that...oh wait..Sophie calls beard guy the owner of the Dagger. right. My explanation of Elliot's plotline stands, though.


@Hogan: World's greatest Grandpa, iirc.

Jimbo said...

Firstly, I just want to say how good an episode this was - really enjoyed it, twigged that the waitress looked like Parker (was it her stunt double?) but didn't think Nate until Parker got to the airvent (and even then I just figured he'd be waiting for Parker on the outside).

Secondly, was it written as we saw it, or did you start with the getout, and work your way back? (much like the heist in A Sacred Art Of Stealing by Christopher Brookmyre - recommended reading)

Thirdly, was the Baron Oil bit added in later on as a reaction to BP's little misadventure? Or was it just good timing, like the plane landing in the Mile High Job?

Also, I loved seeing the team through each other's eyes, especially Sophie's accent going from a mix of Lily Allen and Donna Noble, to Elvish, to gibberish. Beth looked like she was having a whale of a time too.

Natasha said...

First off this is my first time commenting, so thank you for taking the time to answer our questions. Personally I'm surprised this show hasn't been nominated for an Emmy, very foolish on their part, and this episode is full proof of the awesomeness that is Leverage.

During the beginning of Eliot's piece, I noticed he had a 7 on the back of his TAC vest. Was that detail made by Christian, or the costume designers?

Daisy Bookworm said...

No questions. Just wanted to give you my knee jerk reaction of: That was AWESOME! Fantastical! Thank you sooo much for doing this show!

LOVED that everyone thought of Hardison as being fat. And loved everyone but Nate butchering Sophie's accent. Parker's version of it was the funniest.

I love you for doing this show and not screwing it up. You can tell while watching it that the cast and crew is having fun while making it. With other shows I watch ... it's blatantly obvious that the cast and crew are just doing a job and not having fun.

Thanks for making television fun again.

Video Beagle said...

@Daisy: hmmm good point...I wonder if Hardison was a fat kid 5 years ago.

chopdog7 said...

How long did it take to folm this ep DT the actors cracking each other up? I hope their are ALOT of outtakes on the S3 DVD set. Great job Jon R &the entire Leverage team!

24jg13 said...

@Video Beagle said...
I hesitate to ask...

Who's Riley and what's Rule #7?

I see you found rule #7 as for Riley, he and CK go way back Riley has a pic of them from 2001 on his twitter and they filmed the movie Minuteman which is in post production.

and thanks for the breakdown but I was answering someone else's question, I knew who had hired Eliot. :-)

SueN. said...

@Video Beagle: Nate, IYS, and the cops put the SUPERVILLAIN in jail (which wound up freeing Han to make the kessel run...I mean Elliot to go bang a stripper).

I have no words to tell you how much I love that (both equating Eliot to Han and the stripper reference). I only just recently made the connection that, as Han was always my favorite from Star Wars (well, aside from Vader; I still haven't forgiven Lucas for foisting what's-his-name as Whine-akin on us and trying to make us believe he grows up to be Vader), it is from him that my love for scruffy bad boys with hearts of (tarnished) gold comes.

So, yes, in my strange little world view, Han Solo is Eliot Spencer's father. Just … go with it. *g*

catvincent said...

Eliot in the vest-of-many-knives - a nod to Willie Garvin?

Hannah said...

Could anyone tell me what is the name of the character 'after' Eliot. I am having a hard time making it out (Itunes downloads don't have captioning). Amazing episode!

SueN. said...

Just a few more things.

I know there is much love for Gina in that dress (which, btw, yeah), but many thanks, also, for spiffing up Aldis and Kane as well. Because those two are all kinds of beautiful in their party duds. Hopefully, this will make it up to the Wonder Twins for having to write Eliot in miner grunge.

Though, hmm, what does it take to get Kane into a tie, and who gets to break the news to him (and presumably hold him down and put it on him) when the script calls for it?

And I still adore y'all's sound effects. Honestly, every time someone whips out a knife (or anything), I'm not happy unless I hear the "whoosh." And y'all do make me happy. *g*

I loved how, when the lights blinked off, everyone else went "power surge," while Parker's immediate reaction was, "somebody's broken into the security system." She is such a thief!

Most of all, I think, I loved how in Nate's version, when Parker whipped out that knife, Eliot shot her his patented (or it should be) "there's something wrong with you!" look, even before he knew her.

Now all I have to do is figure out how to watch this again, without anyone catching on, during my daughters' open house at school this evening …

SueN. said...

@Hannah, it's Guttman.

Hogan said...

Video Beagle: Thanks large.

Anonymous said...

So much love for this episode! SO MUCH LOVE. I really shouldn't even attempt to pick out favourite parts, having worried the neighbours with my cackles throughout, but I can't resist:

Eliot's recounting of Sophie's accent (and hers of his): stupendous. I am never going to be able to watch that part too many times.

Eliot with the knife! Hardison's pov was BRILLIANT, but I loved how the others continued that theme.

And of course the '7' on Eliot's back early on. Presumably a reference to Kane's Rule #7?

This episode was absolutely bleedin' brilliant, as Sophie might say when filtered through the lens of Eliot.

Livlife said...

Where I'm at, Leverage starts at 8pm. By 8:02 I had already firmly plunked this in my top THREE love-list.

I really loved this episode, for all the reasons mentioned in the preceding comments. I won't repeat them here. Just know I'm sharing the love.

My questions is/are this:
Nate has chased ALL of them at some point in the past, before the team came together. I can buy that being in the museum, he might not have seen one or two of them. Is is possible that Nate didn't know any of them were there? (I can't believe that).

If he knew they were there, was HE there because of it? He stated that he was acting for IYS because of the suspected forgery by the evil owner, but was there something more...maybe to make certain that the fake wasn't stolen by one of the gang?

I got distracted at the end of the ep and couldn't watch the replay...anyone want to tell me what I missed? I know Nate got the guy off Eliot's back, but why did they all suddenly run out of the bar and Nate hopped over it to follow? Killing me not knowing....

Once I looked up "Rashomon" (sorry, bit of a nerd-neophyte) I was even more astounded at the Leverage-brilliance (Leverilliance?)

Thanks again!

IMForeman said...

Present for you, sir:

http://i514.photobucket.com/albums/t341/Enigmanaut/dammithardison.jpg

Video Beagle said...

@LivLife it's really that Nate at no point encounters any of the gang, other than Sophie's ass going up the stairs, and at least in his telling, he's too annoyed with Coswell to notice.

****

Ok, "Riley" is a friend of Kane's...but I mean, who is he? Everyone's talking about him as a someone Is he an actor? A stuntman? Kane's best bud from Bloomsdale?

gwangung said...

My questions is/are this:
Nate has chased ALL of them at some point in the past, before the team came together. I can buy that being in the museum, he might not have seen one or two of them. Is is possible that Nate didn't know any of them were there? (I can't believe that).


My take? He knew Sophie was there, and probably Eliot and Parker. Hardison was young enough that he might not have made it onto his radar.

But this is where Nate's brains come in--he's smart enough to note the signs of master thieves, AND smart enough not to get trapped into thinking that any one of the three HAD to be the culprit.

And note...Nate's knowing that any of the three were there is kinda irrelevant. Once he had the true thief in hand, the others were irrelevant.

SueN. said...

@Livlife, at the end, the team learned that the dagger is currently owned by the CEO of "Barron Petroleum," and is being displayed as a sign that "he cares" about the "little people" whose lives are being ruined by his company's oil spill. So they all rush out, once again competing to see who can steal the dagger first. Again. Nate watches them go, then says "what the hell" and goes off to join them.

Does that help?

Jane said...

@SueN re Parker knowing it was the security system.

Parker had an advantage because she told her story after Hardison, while the others told theirs before him. I think she added that bit because of his version of events.

Just like we always knew it was Sophie because she told her story first And Hardison added the "in the dark" line to his because he knew the doctor was Eliot.


wv: plaspot - isn't funny if you don't know dutch, but I can't stop grinning.

Nicole said...

Just wondering, at the beginning of the episode when they are all arguing over who stole the dagger, why doesn't Parker chime in since she was the one that was the closest to actually getting it? It seems like she wouldn't have said anything if Nate hadn't pointed it out.

Thanks for taking the time to write the blog. I love reading it :)

SueN. said...

@Video Beagle, Riley is Riley Smith. He's an actor and a singer who has been in a ton of TV shows. He and Kane are part of a close-knit circle of friends (which includes "Supernatural's" Jensen Ackles) who've hung together since they all hit LA.

Tori Angeli said...

Echoing SueN, thank you for suit!Hardison and glasses!Eliot. Because wow. YMMV of course, but wet!Eliot, shirtless!Eliot, suit!Eliot, and all other forms of exclamationpoint!Eliot pale in comparison to any time the man has glasses on, somehow.

Jane said...

@videobeagle to add to what SueN said:

Riley at imdb and wiki.
And this vid on youtube of an interview he did with Kane for Minuteman.

Anonymous said...

The one gag that had me rolling, (and no one here has commented on,) was when Coswell stopped Hardison, he had a photo of Sophie, along with her personnel records. In other words, he had the Ipcress File. Hilarious.

Zenkitty714 said...

In other words, he had the Ipcress File.

I can't believe I missed that! And the story, if I recall correctly, has to do with mind control and brainwashing, right? Oh, John, you SLAY me.

24jg13 said...

oh and one more, kudos for using the shell game so effectively, would love to see Parker play with Jimmy Ford. LOL

Anonymous said...

I loved this, Thankyou :)
A few questions:
1)Whats the deal with Nate's Ring? Any relevance? Also to do with jewellery, are the rest of the team gonna notice Sophie's pendant, or is it just going to be left as a subtly.
2)Does Sophie have safe houses of stolen stuff all over the world, she had one in LA, and now London?
3)What happened to the Monkey, did Eliot ever get it?
4)I LOVED the accent gag, I'm British originally, and have the accent, and at that bit could NOT stop laughing. Who came up with it?
5)Loved Parkers bit with the dagger, the flailing and the skipping, is that improvised or scripted, either way, pure directed genius.
6) Did Nate know sophie was there at the time? If so, WHY are you depriving us past N/S WHYY!
7)One That note, where did the roses go? :P
8)Lastly, niice ending with the smarmy idiotic rich guy, with the 'little people' thing, i liked how you still liked it to the helpng people. BTW weren't they all drunk byt this point, and incidentally, what did they do once they stole it from him, and also magically fixing the oil spll, cuz theyre just that cool.
All in all, LOVED IT, especially Gina in it. Loved the writing, thankyou :)

Ally said...

OK - more questions:

1) Had Nate already worked with Eliot at the time of this attempted theft? Did he realize that he was helping Eliot when he got Gutman arrested? If so, how?

2) How did Parker escape when Coswell knew she was there?

3) What exactly was Nate doing in the "security office" and what made him come out to check the hallways?

Hannah said...

@SueN Thanks, I knew what I was hearing made absolutely no sense.

Anonymous said...

@Ally - Coswell didn't know why Parker was actually there (at least in Nate's version). He was just trying to find a way out of that room. Plus, both stories she did elbow him in the face, and then dropped down to a lower vent, which is probably how she crawled out.

@anonymous - I'm sure Sophie has safe houses in what ever city she is currently living or has a home.
And I don't think Nate knew any of them were there at the time - he even said in his version that he hadn't put it all together until they were all talking about it.
And Nate probably gave the roses to Maggie, because he did tell the security guy that he was [still] married at the time.

@Nicole - Parker is very sneaky, by her own nature. She likes to sneak in undetected. She could tell, as they were telling their stories, that she was the last one to have it, based on time and placement, so she was just waiting for her moment to shine, so she could say she stole it from all of them. All though, she never actually says that because (1)not her style, she likes to let her smile say what's obvious, and (2)she was visually disappointed in herself for not actually having it in the end.

@SueN - At the end, I don't think they were necessarily going to compete, I think Nate had made their collective attempts into a plan/con, so they could work together (like they do best) and actually steal the real one this time, so they could take down that SOB. Although all their cover stories wouldn't work, so they would have to improvise.

But, let's ask:
Hey, John, how'd I do? At the end, was the team going to compete against each other to steal it or were they going to work together to get it?

Loved Nate with "What the hell" jumping over bar. Classic.

LynnM said...

Must add much love also for this ep!
Two things:
To add to the time line. In season 1, Nate said he first saw Sophie 10 years ago, but they actually "met" 8 years prior. Given seasons are in real time, season one could have been about 3 years ago. Therefore, it's possible Nate had only seen her before, not heard her voice. Don't know if it matters, but it keeps me happily on the fun train.

Second. How long does one get put away for for racketeering charges? Would 5 years be reasonable? Will the Monkey Master guy rear his head to be Eliot's past catching up with him?

Joella said...

This episode had me rolling. Thank you! I really needed it. One question: Is the man who hired the guy (couldn't understand his name) who hired Eliot the "Big Bad" of this season? You did hint that we'd see the connections by the end of the season. This made me think of the line (paraphrased) "if we only had the gift to see ourselves as others see us." So what did the team learn about themselves I wonder. Thanks again and wishing there was NOT two more episodes only before hiatus.

Joella said...

Remembered my second question. Eliot "caught" the shrimp whatever in the champagne. How familiar is he with poisons?
Did you all reuse the set from "The Sheherezade Job" for the vaults? It sure looked like it. I still feel glee at having stood where they plan and other set pieces from ConCon.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for an episode of such pure awesomeness! I loved how Parker sided w/ Sophie on the Coswell + rifle detail...

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