Your monkey's Kung Fu is not strong ...
great episode tonight, it was awsome just seeing this other side of eliot. it proves that he is more than the hitter that we all love. The interactions between the team and the friendships are nice. Just one question: When will Hardison and Parker break up there eliot and parker fans none of us can stand hardison with parker, those two are like joey and phoebe.
Haven't seen the show yet- west coast and all. I just want to say that I'm really irritated with the whole promise to make you cry thing- mostly because you're pretty good at keeping your promises. My question is this. In the off chance that Leverage doesn't get renewed (and I'm beating the crap out of a piece of wood on that one) will those tears be satisfying tears or unsatisfying ones? I really wish that TNT, when they do decide to kill the show, give you guys enough notice to give it a nice wrap up that doesn't leave us all miserable and wanting to stalk you to exact some sort of Eliot-like retribution. I know it's a stand-alone season- no cliff hangers, but I'd REALLY hate to leave on a sad note. Have you ever considered that it won't be JUST the interns in your office that will give you evil glares? That you'll be getting them for the rest of your existence, that people will walk up to you and say "oh, LOVED that show except when. . . " and you'll have to live with that, you know every day FOR-EV-ER. Or is that secretly your innermost joy in writing? (okay- TWO questions)
I want a Hardison/Parker wedding. :-) Or at least an engagement.
I can't wait till we get the episode about how small companies are laying off full-time workers, or cutting them back to part time, because they can't afford to comply with the Affordable Care Act!Oh wait, we're never gonna get that one, are we?
@Kim Henry All shows get cancelled. Few get loved and remembered. Fewer still get their own RPG. As JR has posted before, every season finale was written to be a season finale, if needed.-JR How long has this card been up on the wall about Wal-err Valu-More?
Why the header "Four more until we break your heart?" Are you hinting at something? BTW I really like Hardison/Parker, I like the chemistry between them just as I like Nate/Sophie. Loving the new episode tonight
Hey, so...going back to an interview a loooong time ago, that I remember only well enough to ask this with 97% certainty that it's applicable: Is CK's sister still speaking to him?
I'm calling it now, Hardison will edit the video so the manager fires Eliot without cause.
Anon @7:30, I had the same thought! One of those awkward quiet Thanksgiving dinners at the Kane house? :-) I loved the gentle way Eliot said, "I know" when the guy couldn't feel his arm. Too funny!
@premeirepartygirl101- Eliot has always beem ... smarter than he looks. -JR How angry was the room for this episode?Yay, Alice White!-Did the TV's say Grimm-o-tron or Jamm-o-tron?
I thought the Alice White alias got burned!
Aww, poor Elliot.
Fun ep to come back to!1) I know there's a lot of legal issues around this and you couldn't make the store look like what we are all pretty sure it represents, but it looked an awful lot like Costco instead -- which I think is actually quite good to its employees and has quality products. Just a function of the location?2) Nice beats with Eliot. :)3) Enjoyed the Elie Sattler/dinosaurs bit. :D4) I was out in Oregon last week to have Thanksgiving with my grandparents and was half-hoping to run into someone Leverage-y at the airport, but no such luck. Ah, well.
So who's the Improv Everywhere fan, Sophie or Hardison?Ironic this ep aired right after Black Friday, when the principle of doorbuster sales to get people in the store to buy other stuff while there is well-established.One problem with the Caroline night from hell hotel room and lack of shower; particularly for someone as road warrior experienced as she was, she would've been on the phone to the front desk demanding a new room about the third time the repeater went off, and definitely after the shower didn't work. If no rooms were available, she'd've used her intern/assistant's shower and likely have demanded they move a rollaway bed into the i/a's room with the i/a sleeping on the rollaway and Caroline now in the bed.Hopefully the cliffhanger at the end gets resolved. If Eliot's gone to the trouble to go there, figure he's going to wait until someone shows up.
I hope Leverage does not lose its edginess by getting sad and romantic. I like seeing some background of the characters but Leverage is about the cons for me. Please do not turn it into a soap opera. Leverage is still the best dhow on TV.
Awesome shout out and adaptation of the Improv Everywhere Best Buy blue shirts prank. Who on your staff knew about IE and had you wanted to dramatize one of their scenes before?
Nice episode, had a classic feel. I really liked the way the first two tries failed miserably, but my favorite part was the chaotic "everything goes wrong" sequence with the background music. Snazzy.You know, though, after hearing for so many years about how we won't see Eliot running off in the night in his poncy night shirt, didn't we just kinda see that? Why now the sudden insight into Eliot's personal past? Is it that we're at 5 years and this may be the last season or what?I liked the beats between Eliot and the older worker. That fit nicely with his character and was just on the right side of emotion. I especially liked Eliot revealing the info about his dad to the older guy. If it had been left right there, I would have given that subplot a solid A. But for me, I would have preferred that it was left a mystery as to what happened between him and his dad. Somehow, I found the truth and Eliot's wobbly lip at the end underwhelming.The only other false note for me was Caroline getting up in the morning and looking like she had been beaten and then applying cover up to make it look like she hadn't been beaten. Like, I know what everyone was going for buuuut . . . the makeup made it look like someone had punched her in the face a few times. That was kind of unintentionally NOT funny.
The word "nice" may be overused for this episode, but it's the word that seems to fit best.1. I particularly liked the direction and pacing, and the QUIET nature of much of the dialogue - almost sotto voce, and not just the team talking to each other over the comms. Was that in the script, or the director's choice?2. Eliot as "Archer"? A nod to our favorite Duchess spy? Certainly not to Star Trek Enterprise, on which Brigid Brannagh once guest-starred...3. "Night on Bald/Bare Mountain" - an interesting musical choice, and it sure went on for quite a while. Was that in the script, or did LoDuca recommend it?4. Assuming that the annoying employee had the authority to fire people, wouldn't a workplace violence claim be his first line of defense against Eliot? Of course, the guy essentially made the first move, but a real employee would have a hard time proving it.5. I really liked Caroline's motivation of wanting to stop traveling and join the corporate office, but her speech in her opening walk seemed meaner than usual - almost vindictive to the small businesses. The villain shouldn't see herself as a villain, and I'd think her actively wanting to hurt the townspeople the way she was expressing it would violate that dictum. Her line at the end of that sequence about wanting to show the town what Value!More could do (loosely quoted) seemed a better driver for her. Am I too far off base? (THERE's a softball for ya!)6. That was the most disapproving gloat from the team EVER - VERY effective and justified IMHO - until Parker (or Beth?) sort of ruined the ride with that smirk. Whose choice?7. Ambiguous, slightly sad ending for Eliot. Loved the episode humanizing him more than ever before (he asked for a date!), and I wish we could have at least seen his dad for a few moments at the end. Was it considered?Great to have the show back on. Looking forward to the remaining episodes with anticipation and trepidation.
I loved this episode! Three things.1. I don't think I have ever hated a villain more on this show. Was she based on a specific big box exec, or just an amalgam?2. Were you expecting there to be such amazing timing with this episode coming out at the same time as the rolling OUR Walmart strikes and the Walmart factory fire in Bangladesh?3. The background music made it a little hard to hear the dialog at times. Were there any unexpected sound editing issues on this episode?
@PurpleOps, #5 is an excellent point. All I could think was "This woman really needs a mustache to twirl."
Wasn't it established in Season 1 that Eliot grew up in Kentucky? No reason his dad couldn't have since moved to Oklahoma, of course.
I know you have mentioned that you are not sure if you are going to be renewed for a season 6. Question: Do you and Mr. Downey want to have a season 6? Or are you ready to move on to a new project?Do you have a new project ready to pitch?
As someone who has worked retail for most of his life, and who currently works in (but not for) a Big Box store, I found the scene where Eliot took "Bryan" aside for some home truths to be incredibly cathartic. I've known way too many of those kinds of managers who get the smallest measure of authority and abuse the hell out of it, so seeing Eliot show this one what for... well, Thank you, Becky Kirsch.Oh, and I now assume that the fight that caused Eliot to leave home was after Eliot "died" the first time, and his dad banished him. Now Eliot roams the Earth awaiting the Gathering.
@PurpleOps.. there were wireless cameras installed in the breakroom to find out who was posting the union meetings. And since he touched Eliot first it would seem Eliot had the bigger claim of assault. he restrained the guy from assaulting him further.
Actually, Art_Connery, Assault is making a threat of physical violence, which Eliot did first by saying he'd like to rip off Bryan's arm and feed it to him. Bryan then responded by trying to physically subdue Eliot, and that's Battery, which Eliot countered with more Battery. Doesn't really matter, though... if it could have been brought to court, it would have been video only, as audio recordings can only be admitted if both parties consent to having their voice recorded. So, it would seem like Bryan started it.
Break our hearts, don't you dare John Rodgers.
@Amelia Walmart owns Sam's Club which is the same as Costco and BJ's
I tend to be over-analytical about too many things in life... this is why I rarely pose questions, I like to be surprised [right now a Season 6 Renewal surprise would totally hit the spot]. However, I have to disagree with Eliot/Parker shippers, the direction their relationship has taken would make seeing them together romantically uncomfortable. Besides the fact that Parker really needs that comfort food on her plate, the friend/champion, with no tension, to help her through her self-discovery. *DUCKS Final note: Grifters, if we're doing our job, they are just going to hand us the PCA, 6-10 Seasons, FanCon2013, okay, well we can steal the last one, cause that's what we do! xo
Interesting that some of the comments from previous posts about Eliot not having relationships and character back stories not being the main focus made this episode surprising. But in a good way :) I like that we got to see more of that, and we got to learn more about Eliot and see some emotions from him that we don't often see. Actually, now that I think of it, have we ever seen that emotion from him before? Hmm.The grocery shop girl (if we heard her name I must have missed it), is she a Portland native? I swear I've seen her in other things...Really loved this one, was a great one to get back into the flow with, and I'm choosing to ignore your comment about breaking our hearts at the end of the season because I'm in my happy Leverage-is-back place.
Damn. You nailed the banal evil that is working in those places -- even when there is a union, because unions are not magical unicorns and some will cave like that *snaps fingers* rather than actually face-off against the corp. I've got ten years of been-there, done-that, right down to the give just enough hours to avoid paying benefits.And then having people argue -- just like Hardison -- that the business is a wonderful example of what someone with a dream can accomplish... Yeah, having a few rage flash-backs. Translation: You NAILED it.So, was the hotel another one of your flashbacks, to the stand-up days? I loved the look on Parker's face when she realised the bedclothes weren't washed.This is one of the most consistently well-written/produced shows on television. Like I said before, it's not easy typing with crossed fingers. I'm really hoping tears at Christmas isn't how I'm going to have to remember it.
JR: How much do you have to drink to get through these comments? Sheesh.I love you unconditionally,you know. That's why I will forgive you for not finishing off the story with Eliot and his dad. You know it's really better that way.Question: Parker has all of a sudden grown up and lost her quirkiness. And in this and Rundown, she's more physical and sexual. Does this trend continue, increase, or am I imagining it?
1) LOVED how you exposed the 'family' Big Box retailer and their destructive ways. It truly is all about perception. It still amazes me the notions that stick in consumers' heads - that they are providing jobs (even with limited pay, slim benefits, and hard conditions) and that low prices trump all (sending manufacturing jobs overseas and offering lesser quality clothing & such just an acceptable by-product of their greed). I've worked retail for years, have seen the changes first hand: how small businesses are destroyed, how towns are left to depend on one store, and how competition is forced to adopt the same practices or be run out of business too.2) I've always loved Hardison & Parker together, keep those moments coming! I also love the brotherhood between Hardison & Eliot, and how Eliot takes on the role of big brother to Parker. It is as it should be!3) Absolutely loved seeing more of the softer side of Eliot. He is a complex man and learning more of his background was most welcome. CK knows how to make those moments poignant without revealing too much. He does wonders with the silences. I'm hoping we see Eliot's reunion with his dad and that you snagged a compelling actor to guest star. Sam Hennings would be an interesting choice! Someone who could return on occasion to help reveal more about our intriguing Hitter.4) My only criticism would be the villain was a bit too cartoony. Minor point, but knowing the truth of what you presented, I'd have loved a more realistic touch there. The young power-crazed store assistant manager was spot on, although after the last major lawsuit, I'm sure upper management has been instructed to NOT work their associates off the clock anymore!5) And don't you dare tease that there won't be a S6! I can't even conceive of there not being more. There is still so much ground to cover with our team. No way you stop before 100 episodes...and then I say onward to 200!
Another fantastic episode! SO glad my favorite show is back this winter! And I loved ALL of the character beats in this one, especially the background on Eliot. Christian Kane really shined! My one question is: I'm totally cool with not getting to see the reunion between Eliot and his dad, but the last moment confused me a tad. Are we supposed to believe that his dad is not home, or that he's purposely not opening the door? That would change the whole feel of that last scene for me!Anyway, keep up the fantastic work, and thanks for answering our questions.
Welcome back, Leverage! Let's hope for many happy returns, as the Victorians used to say :)I'm dying of curiosity: was that an Annoy-o-Tron (or a non-license-protected analogue :P) Hardison stuck under her phone? I miss the hilarious - yet insightful - flashbacks that used to pop up when the show first started; any chance of them coming back? (I know there have been a few, but they're so few).What scenes - if any - got left out for time or pacing are there that we might be able to see on the DVD's (if not too spoilery). It felt like a lot more might have been happening with the "things are spinning out of control" flashmob/mispricing etcetera sequence than was shown.Also: the big question - What's going on with Eliot?! Ahem, I mean, will we get to see him with family at some point this season? Or maybe a bit of family-related emotional resolution? In parting - that was a lovely nice long gloat from the whole team; I loved the choice to linger on each character's particular attitude and expression, and Parker's smile at the end clinched it.How I wish Leverage could go on forever, or at least another four or ten seasons or so :D Meanwhile, you guys are awesome!
I don't think I've ever wanted Eliot to punch someone as much as I did that assistant manager douchebag. I can't believe he was dumb enough to actually try to lay hands on Eliot. I really enjoyed this story arc. As a Portlander, it hits close to home. We've had many fights to keep large businesses out. I remember some years ago Wal-Mart wanted to open a store on Hawthorne and they were resoundingly bitch slapped back to the hole they crawled out of. Also, we aren't all hippies here! *takes a patchouli bath*Eliot and his dad really hit home for me. I had a falling out with my father 10 years ago and he died this last July. I'd give anything for one more conversation with him, even if it blew up spectacularly. It's one thing to not have closure with someone, another thing entirely for someone to die and to know that the questions you have will never, ever be answered because that road is closed for good. It always feels like it's too hard, or to big to try to go back and open up a line of dialog again...until that door is closed forever then you're left with regrets, a lot of anger and sadness. I hope Eliot finds some measure of peace. Even if all he does is leave that beer on the porch, it's something.
Fantastic way to kick off the back half. And it contains what is probably my favorite Eliot moment ever:"I can't feel my arm!""I know."What could have been incredibly menacing was very matter-of-fact and almost gentle.Question -- Did you guys ever consider casting Eliot's dad? If so, who is your dream get?
It's unrelated to the episode. I checked out that g+ hangout thing. Saw it on the youtube. While looking for the other stuff on the channel I noticed the production blogs. Unfortunately they were region locked and can't be accessed from Narnia(though that explained the horrible view counts). Is there an actual legal/copyright reason for that or is it more of a blanket thing happening with all the videos?
Hello and welcome back!!! You have been missed!! I loved the whole episode and I have to agree with a previous commenter on the love of flashbacks. I was expecting this one to suddenly have really funny and cool flashbacks but it wasn't that type of con. Loved the Eliot beats (don't we all?) was just wondering from the conversation he was having with Hardison, he hasn't been back home since he was 18?My thoughts on the last scene - I would have cut the scene when he knocked on the door and would have let all of us scream where is the rest?!? Now I think it is confusing - was he not home? moved? (although that would be something Eliot would have known) and as one viewer mentioned has he opted not to open the door? That one not possible! As much as I know there are evil people out there fathers tend to wait for those moments. I know my father had been waiting for my brother to come knocking for over 10 years. And when he did he was welcomed home with open arms even after everything he had done. That's just my view on the thing. I would have cut the scene maybe 5 seconds before BUT I am not the million dollar show runner so was it scripted that way or director/editor choice? I have to say even though I am not a Parker/Hardison fan please don't break them up and pair Parker with Eliot - you are not a soap. Thank you for making Leverage and giving us a place to rant and ask.
My first guess was that Eliot's dad had died . . . but maybe I'm just being a pessimist!
We recently discovered Leverage, and we cannot get enough. Our DVR was set to record The Closer, and it caught half of an episode of Leverage (The Second David). Well, we had to run out to (ironically--given last night's episode) Walmart and purchase the DVD to find out what happened. By the end of the week, we were all caught up with the series!Loved the latest episode--especially the Parker/Hardison bits. It's been nice to see this relationship develop without it taking over the cons (which I think the Sophie/Nate bits have a tendency to do).Can't wait until Eliot finds his lady love...just don't want it to change him too much. Show another side, but don't lose that intensity that Christian brings so easily to the role.Season Six?? Please!
I'm finally going to ask - Why the gang has gone from disappearing to the "pose and gloat" with the villains? Con artists don't do that, and in Leverage-land it should be especially ones who want to stay anonymous to continue to help people as opposed to being potentially photographed and plastered all over social media. It's the one change (aside from the pretend-to-be-other-people episodes) that my husband and I don't find jives well with the series.
Holy cow! Totally awesome show - thank you for my birthday present. The only thing missing is a shot of Bryan, busted up, working at a 7-11 or some such place. That boy needed a beat-down.Congratulations on another great show!
I suppose the return of Eliot's longer hair is just a side effect of airing the episodes in a different order than they were shot, but should we assume that enough time has passed since the summer finale for it to grow back, or think of this episode as taking place before the summer finale?
Eliot asks Grocery Girl out to dinner -- Do you know how much Mary Sue fanfic you just provoked?I enjoyed seeing Sophie's theater troupe getting some improv experience.I like that you found a villain who was really a challenge for Nate. I am, however, disappointed that Nate didn't seem to anticipate that the mark would fight back. Getting outplayed the first time? Okay, he's still taking her measure. Getting outplayed the second time? Not so much.Coincidence #1: I recently started working for a company that delivers email (and, more importantly, tracks responses), so Hardison's email hack sent me into a geek spiral. (Were the barcodes personalized?)Coincidence #2: College friend on Facebook had just shared an article on Costco and how they failed to treat their employees badly. Sooooo much fun seeing Wall Streeters complain that the employees should be paid less and forced to contribute more to their health coverage. (Not that anyone on Wall Street deserves to have their pay and bennies put under scrutiny, nosirree.)
Loved the ep. :)Splitting the ep into 6 parts instead of 4 really seems to give a different feel. I'm not sure I like it. Was that dictate by TNT? Who made that decision?Just curious...
Loved the episode, but I think your bad guys are too weak. If you get renewed for Season six (I do hope so!), please, give Nate someone who would cause trouble - this woman is just... funny caricature.We really need episodes that would make us wonder how it will end. I had that feeling with the Run Down Job - for a few seconds, Dean Devlin made me feel scared for them, though I knew they can't be killed in the middle of the season - and THAT, trust me, is hard to achieve.I'm deeply in love with your show and all characters, and I want ten more seasons, and I would continue to watch even if it gets bad, boring and naive... but I would really like to see just a little sense of danger in what they do. It won't diminish their bantering, and it will help fans to care more. And that is the most important thing - audience that cares and fears for characters, that keeps shows alive, not cons.Damn, I didn't want this to sound so... preaching, and I apologise... but this blog is for feedback, right, and we are allowed to say what's bothering us. I have a question: my mother has hearing problems, and she couldn't hear most of the dialogue, something was wrong with sound - too loud background music, perhaps? I hope it's only in this episode.Thank you for this opportunity to speak to you.PS: Didn't Hardison burned all old aliases, how come Alice White showed up?
Loved the Chuck shout-out!
What the heck happened to Eliot's short hair? It didn't even last TWO episodes?!?
I think Alice White showed up because there really wasn't anything down on paper for her. Everything was still so new and chaotic that she could just show up in the appropriate outfit and be like, "Why yes, I do work here person who is also new and doesn't really know anyone yet". Since the store just opened, no one really recognizes everyone yet. Technically, everyone is new. So she could just pop in really quick to throw her shirt at the villain or mosey up to a register that Hardison opened up for her. Well, this is how I justify it all in my mind anyway. I'm sure J.R. will have a much more clever answer.
Let's steal us a Season 6 - DO IT FOR ROBOT NANA!Seriously, John. I am so happy to have the team back (on screen and off)in my world. The Google+ podcast was really fun. But... it didn't allow us West Coast viewers to contribute questions. I hope that can either be fixed by a time delay or just returning to the audio podcast plan.Sad to see the harsh comments. Seems particularly nasty this time. Loved the use of the Annoy-a-Tron. My husband discovered this device and tortured a co-worker all afternoon with it. This was just before he retired, so no retribution received (yet).I am curious, did someone (looking at you, Chris) sneak the Annoy-a-Tron into the writing room before revealing it as a device for the show?
I like that you found a villain who was really a challenge for Nate. I am, however, disappointed that Nate didn't seem to anticipate that the mark would fight back.Someone else mentioned on TWOP that as much as Nate/team had researched these stores, it was unrealistic that they wouldn't know about loss leaders or expect the coupon scam to backfire.I have a related complaint which is, how can someone so good become so suddenly unresourceful at the end? I like that they re-introduced the toxic soil, that was a great touch, but that she would just huddle in her hotel room moaning at herself in the mirror and not barge into her assistant's room or demand a new room was pretty unrealistic. She became soft and stupid exactly when the plot demanded it.
To those of you who want Parker and Hardison to brake up so that Parker and Elliot can get together. It will never happen. Even if they brake up, Elliot is not the type of guy to steal one of his closest friend's girl.
loved seeing the soft side o Eliot. Just love that man. Please do not break our hearts we need a season 6. No one anywhere is saying if Leverage will be renewed. Will it. Good luck at the Peoples Choice awards vote often
Parker becomes the team leader in the series finale. It's stupid but there you go.
Re: TLLPJ Fun episode!Just caught The Ho Ho Ho Job again and teared up at the end when the "kids" were playing with their presents and it snowed.Yeah, I'm PMSing, so what? Eff you JR.
Oh, and I AM a robot. Not that you can do anything about it, judging by your puny comments security.Humans. *robot eyeroll*
Loved the episode, going after you-know-who is long overdue, and Christian Kane was once again superb.Also, glad to see the theater students again :) Hope we see more of them.Only issue was--it's so hard to see Bridget Brannah aka Pamela Moran as a villain!! She was terrific, but it's always a little hard to make that mental switch from a beloved character to a someone deserving to be "leveraged" :)Also was kind of hoping for some more BuyMore love, like a Casey sighting, or a secret den of operations below the ValueMore. The Costco like set reminded me a little of a wonderful indie movie, The King of California, with Michael Douglas and Evan Rachel Wood. Well worth renting.Thanks again, looking forward to more revelations and cons these next four episodes, crossing every appendage and lighting candles wishing for another season of the best show on TV.
To @ChelseaNHI saw a great article a couple years back with stats that showed that the $$ amount that management wants to take out of pensions and healthcare benefits at major corporations equals almost the exact amount that CEOs and top executives compensation has increased.In other words, Costco can pay their employees well because the founder and executives are well paid, but not obscenely paid hundreds of millions annually.
Will leverage get a six season? I really love this show and all epsiode are great!
Good grief people! The network chose to air the shows out of filming order. His hair didn't grow back in two weeks while shooting. JOHN: The truck at the end. Eliot did not drive from Oregon to OKC and expect to drive back in time for his date, did he? Or is this the type of vehicle they rent at the airport there?
This was a nice episode! I'm just going to say I hate hiatuses, and this was a nice way to get back into the season. Comments/questions: 1. I thought Caroline was kind of funny. One of the more entertaining villains definitely. (I too am a ginger, so I may be slightly biased). 2. Will we ever get to see something Sophie directed? I'd really love to see her take on one of the Shakespeare histories. 3. Did Eliot's dad open the door? 3a. Will we ever meet Eliot's dad/mom/siblings/other family? 3b. What about other characters (besides Jimmy)?4. I thought they burned Alice White...5. How does the Leverage crew continually get away with the forged article trick? 6. RENEWAL?????As always, spectacular. See you next week for what looks to be another killer episode!
I've been lurk-reading for a while now, but I just had to say:"Four more until we break your heart!"Until? Until? Eliot broke my heart this episode! [sobs]
I'll just second what Kim Henry said. A sad note ending would be a terrible last episode. I hope that's not what we get (either in the episode or where it falls in the show's trajectory).I like the use of Sophie's improv group this season a lot, but using them in "flash mob" capacity here seemed like a missed opportunity for some continuity, where they could point out that Jimmy Ford had used the same technique on them. You know, call it the Jimmy Ford Flash Mob (kind of like the Edward Albee) or something.REASON NO. 5236 that I will be sad if Leverage gets cancelled. No casino episode!! No pool shark episode!!Downey said at one point that you had a Casino ep in mind. What happened to that? Did you ever plan to do a sort of Color of Money/Hustler riff? What cons and/or stories do you still want to tell the most?
What a wonderfully timely episode.* * *I hope Leverage gets renewed . . . but if it doesn't, I hope any spin-offs or other series use Portland!
I've been thinking about this for a couple of seasons. Eliot needs his sister to get caught up, accidently, in some situation and needs Eliot's help.(She hears some underhanded deal between to big wigs in her town?) Maybe get kidnapped and have the crew rescue her. As the crew breaks thru the door to rescue her, Eliot tells Parker to get his Sis out of harms way and his life is in danger.(again) Sis comes back w/gun and shoots her, now former, capters (after all, she is a country girl)and Eliot kicks their asses after HE is rescued by his big sis. This provides where Eliot learned how to shoot. Maybe the reason he doesn't like guns is that he shot her accidently while she was teaching him to shoot. We all know Eliot gets plenty. (ie "nurses" and "I've seen models.......naked." Gotta LOVE that line, great writing!) But we that fantasize about Eliot, (yes we do! and then jump our husbands for no apparent reason :P) The sister senario puts Eliot with family fitting in with him going to see his father. That way it doesn't throw it in our faces like you were nice enough to do with the past girlfriends. (two horse job?) I'm available for the sister role. LOLI caught the podcast for the first time after this EP. Really great to hear your comments on the show. You seem to be your own worst critics. Thank you, Aldis, for showing us the sticker up close. You were right, we could not see it from your seats. It was also hard to hear some of your comments. Prentend we are Nana and yell at us viewers so we can hear you, ok? And who's idea was it for Eliot to drive my truck (F150 king cab)to OK? It's great for road trips, but sucks on gas! LOL
Oh, DAMN! My DVR stopped recording a few seconds early. Eliot had just left the beer by the door.Anyone?
First of all, loved this episode! The last scene with Eliot, very powerful!I was kind of hoping to see the door crack open in the background as we see Eliot tear-up.... Also loving the female henchman, also hoping some sort of resolution with that, maybe telling her bosses F U and opening up her own shop. Great take-down of the nasty big box store, reminds me of Latimer. McGuffins o plenty with this one, especially with the union meeting! I think this had one of the best gloats to date. All in all a great beginning! Why the move, TNT, to Tues evening? Anyways, I sensed a darker tone to the team and the episode in general, like the "Run-Down Job". Is that the general direction of the rest of the series or is it just a one off? Emotionally, Christian Kane played beats of being with the team, all the while playing an intensity of regret over his father, BRAVO! I hope to continue next season , there are some many more cons and gloating to go! I hope to have more flashbacks of the team pre-Dubenich! THX for another great episode!
1. Compared to ParDison, Nate & Sophie has less physical touch. Or they only act less touchy only in front of the crew?2. On last scene of Eliot, did his father intentionally not open the door or is he.. dead?Actually it wasn't surprising me to see Eliot teared up. That guy has always been.. emotional. Lol. For such a hitter, he has really soft heart.3. The dynamic is a bit different than usual, isn't it? It's usually smooth path for the team, smooth, smooth, smooth, until there's twist at near end but they'll always flip it. *of course*But this episode's pattern seems like rough, rough, rough, then finally smooth. It's a bit unbelievable that Nate was hesitant against this one. Like Sophie said, he likes her. I'm not surprised.Anyway people! Vote for Leverage on People's Choice Award!! It might make us hear renewal sooner if they win!
Great to see our favorite crew back. It was a long wait and the agony of not knowing if there'll be a season 6 makes it even harder. I agree with the others that I did miss the flashbacks in this episode but, honestly, I didn't even realized there weren't any flashbacks until the end of the episode so I guess the flashbacks are not necessary to tell the story in this one. I must admit that this season, I miss Parker's quirkiness. I know the character has to develop (and mature?) but please don't make her all normal just like, well, normal people. I agree she has to grow as a character, but I'm just sayin' you know... I was wondering if this last 5 episodes will give us something revealing for each character? One character per episode and finally making a full circle to where we all started, with Nate and his son. But I really wish you guys have at least one more season. I would agree with the others that I would rather see the series end with happy, contented feeling rather than contented but sad feeling. Looking forward to next tuesday :)
Really liked the episode, not least because it showed the team moving into something more resembling social consciousness than simply tackling a random "bad guy of the week."(Sure, sure . . . the people at Wal-Mart -- or whatever the actual name of the store was, it escapes me now because this so obviously was Wal-Mart -- were portrayed as villains, and there was the issue of political corruption, but - really - this was the team taking on a corporate bully just because the mark was being a bully, not because the mark was acting illegally. I am sure it is difficult for you to find potential antagonists like this w/out running afoul of and potentially alienating some viewers but, seriously, more like this please.)The fact this episode aired just as the media was (grudgingly) covering the walk-outs by Wal-Mart employees on Black Friday, of course, was gravy.More problematic for me, at least for my inner deliberations, is the fact the episode aired just as it turns out 112 Bangladeshi workers died in a garment factory fire, where they had been making low, low, low cost Wal-Mart clothing. To be sure, a confluence of facts underlining that your corporate villain really does need to be punished is (ordinarily) something to be wished for, but - God! - to have people die by fire is just not worth the underscoring.
If it were just a show about cool heists and clever cons with a side of action and adventure, I'd be good with that. But damned if you haven't managed to create characters and arcs that GET to the audience. Hours after the episode, even the next day, I kept finding that my mind had gone back to that last scene in Oklahoma. That's kind of unique, these days, an episode or beat that stays with you. I'm also still trying to get a handle on the different Nate that we are seeing this season. It was very obvious in this episode, and it sounds like this is going to resolve in the finale. I'm just trying to figure out how. Also, re Eliot's longer hair? Sure, it's possible that the episodes didn't air in the order they were shot. However I'm going with the theory that yes, his hair can grow that fast, it's part of his super healing abilities as Wolverine.
Congrats on coming roaring back into season five strong this was doubtlessly one of my favorite episodes and I look forward to getting a chance to watch it with commentary.Loved Nate listening to "Night on Bald Mountain" (that's what it was right?) as the team began "operation bad luck."Though I'm a little surprised that it took them running through all of the other possible options to reach the "lets make her think that she's sick with the "Cadmium Blues" plan or did the sheer severity of the symptoms mean that it would be hard to trick someone into thinking they had them for a long period of time (or did you not want to have this job feel too much of a repeat of Order 23 which was after all, all about making someone think they were sick all be it in an entirely different situation?)Either way, one suggestion that my brother brought up which would have been amusing to see, though probably would have required an entire episode to pull off would have been to open up a "Leverage Mart" which offered up all the same stuff ValueMore did except at lower prices, primarily because they kept stealing all the stuff they were selling from ValueMore.Though I suppose a plan like that would also require them to get their own collection of under paid workers/force even more small business to shut down, but none the less I do feel that "LeverageMart" should be a card you put up on the big board for season six if there does end up being a season six.Finally just one question to close with Sophie mentioned how the mark of the week had demonstrated a basic brain washing technique but she nor anyone else ever got around to explaining what it was.Could you clear that up for me in case I ever find myself needing to create my own cabal of loyal minions, say to storm TNT headquarters to force them to green light season six? (Joking situation but I am seriously interested in hearing about the technique)
Oh, I can't believe nobody's mentioned this before: Sophie's alias... Dr. Ellie Satler. Jurassic Park reference FTW.
One questoin since this is the first occurence where I can actually ask it:In all these movies and shows we see people walk up to a house and then potentially (if it exists) open the screen door and knock on the main door. Is that because this is movie-world canon of how it has to happen or do people in America actually not believe in door-bells? Just confused over here, because in the kind of house I know you'd have to be in one very specific room in order to be able to hear that somebody is knocking on the front door.
@ The_eyeI have never had a house with a door bell. I live in the Midwest. I live in small 2 bedroom house and I can hear when someone knocks.
@Anonymous yay, a data-point! Many thanks. So not un-based in facts.
I have been a fan from day one. Last season was a letdown and flat. If this season is a cliche liberal propaganda hour like this episode, I'm gone. I watch for entertainment, not indoctrination thank you. The writers wasted my time
you should get Tommy Lee Jones to play Eliot's dad. Just a thought
I know Kane is from OK but Eliot is from Kentucky, did his dad move to Oklahoma or did Eliot's family move their before Eliot left? Loved the episode by the way. I've been waiting for Eliot to get a girl.
I really liked the villain in this one. Clear motivation, and smart enough to shut down the team on two different occasions before they decided to get really mean. 1) Was it just me, or did Nate go after this mark with extra vindictiveness? (vindiction? vindictity?)2) If so, is there a special kind of mark that encourages Nate to delve into his special brand of 'drive the mark to a nervous breakdown' cons? Or is simply a matter of necessity?3) Just how based-in-reality was this episode? Framing a civilian as an ecoterrorist? Busting a union with store discounts? (seriously, what idiot would trade being part of a functional union for store discounts?) Those inane, annoying team-building chants? I knew those big companies were evil, but daaaaaaaaamn.4) One thing I've been wondering; does the team do anything to cover the relatively innocent victims of Eliot-beatings? You'd have to think that somewhere, there's some poor schmuck who doesn't know his company is bad, but had to pay thousands in Eliot-inspired dental work. 5) Another collateral damage question; how many people have been fired as a result of the Leverage team? All of the big corporations they've taken down have to have janitors, menial labor workers, various other people who don't have the resume to find work anywhere else. Does Hardison do anything to find and compensate these people? 6) If the show is renewed but you can't tell us, give us a signal. Wink. Or don't even wink, just scratch your forehead or something. Type 'yes' in morse code and embed it into a blog post.
Sam Hennings was a great suggestion for Eliot's dad, but Tommy Lee Jones--yea, you could get why they would have a falling out--brilliant. There are a couple of other character actors I could see as his dad, too, can't think of names though. The DB Cooper Job really resonated with me on so many levels, could see an episode that helps Eliot deal with the past, much like that episode helped Nate deal with his past and his relationship with his dad and his son--who never got to grow up.That's what I love about this show--the action is always driven by character and relationships, never just another canned episode. Great writing :)
Okay, here's an idea for season 6--seeing a reformed villain who lost it all by being leveraged, and is the better for it.I want to see Hurley again, but he was never really bad, just messed up. There are a lot of villains I'd like to see again, reformed--or more evil than ever. Then again, it would be fun to see the Two Live Crew again or at least Chaos :)
Favorite thing about the episode (beside the Ellie Sattler reference) was Sophie's telling her flash mob "today we're saying no and blocking." Least favorite thing was how the team felt sort of...dumb to me. The first two attempts felt like the sort of thing the team would shoot down in the planning room before they settled on the plan of attack (which would itself go south at some point) . And in many, many past jobs, they've gotten it done doing the exact thing they did for their third pass - throwing small wrenches in the works, causing chaos by turning a systems' rigidity against it. To me, taking so long for them to figure that out didn't feel like them, it felt like a dumber version of them.On the other hand, once things got rolling, I had my usual big ol' Fun Train smile on my face.
I'd to join Ally with the question about Sophie and the directing bit, it would be interesting to see how she handles a play considering how bad she is at acting herself and how good she is teaching the rest grift
Another episode I loved. The Frame Up Job fell a little flat for me after the Rundown Job (I'm an action fan) but this was a really nice episode to get the whole team back together again. Much as I loved the EHP (Elkerson?) split, they are better as a quintet. Which got me thinking about how they are a team, and I just realised how under-played their team roles (Hardison doing his thing, Eliot going in as 2nd grifter) were this ep - they just got on with it. I'm liking the team development!Was that the first evil person "Seriously?" moment? And the "made from food colouring and dust" nearly made me spray my tea...I'll join the masses in loving the Eliot backstory. And Eliot opening up to Hardison. Kind of reminded me of Tap Out Job, except he was acting vulnerable then. Couldn't you have kept the film rolling just a little longer so we saw the door crack open?As for who plays Eliot's dad, Patrick Stewart, just for the hell of it :)
@Stefan JonesEliot turns around, stares out at nothing, and the camera moves in for a close-up on his face as he begins to tear up. Then...CUT. Cue credits.
Ok JR, first i would like to start by saying fantastic episode and i'm loving the season to death! I really wished it aired in Australia. ANYWAYS, what i would like to share is a theory about the season finale because i believe i could possibly be right on this one.So, you have hinted in some of your other comments that Nate may possibly have a tumor and is dying. In 5x01 where Nate and Hardison are having their discussion at the end of the episode there is a world map in the background. Nate has also said that he has "big plans" and "wants to build something". Here is what i'm suggesting. With Nate dying and him preparing Hardison and Elliot throughout the season to 'take lead' and think more like a mastermind and all, I think that Nate is planning on expanding Leverage Inc. worldwide, seeming as he believes he isn't going to be around much longer. i also believe that Portland is going to be Leverage Inc HQ. Correct or so far off it's cringe worthy?
I liked this episode a lot.My favorite serious part - the scene with Eliot and Hardison talking about Eliot's dad. Christian Kane is so good! At everything!My favorite funny part - The voice of patient and kind authority that Eliot uses as he scares the pee out of Bryan.One longwinded question -Caroline is a ruthless jerk but to me it seemed like you left her criminality vague. Of all ValueMore's grim corporate practices, the only things we actually saw her doing were covering up a fake environmental report and persuading people to choose barbecues over unions. So is Nate okay with ruining her just because he finds her morality below his standards? Or is she a big old nasty criminal and everybody (but me) knows it?
So the little grocery was on NW 23rd and Thurman? The Food Front?That was my local grocery when I lived in Portland. Sniff.
For those of you wondering how true this storyline is, here is a link to stories of my local version: http://record-eagle.com/meijer-acme.I actually wanted this store to be built but the whole thing has been in limbo for years because of the unethical actions of the store and the local elected officials. In this case there are very few "mom and pops" that this store would have competed with, so overall I originally thought it was a good idea. And it's a local big box store that is usually very philanthropic and has a good reputation. As for those of you wondering about Caroline’s “criminality”, she was at the very least not the most ethical person. Corporations don’t end up crooked because everybody is using the ethics they were taught in school. I doubt she did anything she could get arrested for, but she wouldn’t pass my Business Ethics class so I don’t feel sorry for her. I am all for capitalism, but I also believe in playing fair. It’s a bit of a sore spot for me though, I have lost jobs because I am not willing to break my code of ethics. So law breaker or not, I think she got what was coming to her! Brigid Brannagh played her brilliantly too. The only question I have is that I hope we are going to see Willa Ford again? Also, that lip quiver thing Christian did at the end . . . well words cannot describe!
@ the_eyeI always knock first, even when there is a doorbell. Knocking seems less... demanding, somehow. If after knocking I don't hear anything, I may try the bell.@oppyu3) The same type of person who signs a contract that guarantees an instant dollar-an-hour wage, even when anyone can see that the new scheduling structure will cost them even more than the dollar would get them. Most people honestly cannot see the long-term. Especially when their employer starts hinting that things can get... difficult. I've seen it happen, especially among people who are uncertain and a little used to being pushed around to begin with. In a lot of cases, they're just tired.Like I said, they really nailed the atmosphere on this one.
@taleathanks, I missed that, and I used to live blocks from there :) There were a number of locations that looked familiar, will have to rewind
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Awesome episode as allways!!!!! Thanks for making GREAT television!!! Loved learning a little about Eliot's backstory. When Nate said that he had had Value Mart on his radar is this any way connected to his BIG plans??? AND Just how bad are you going to break us in the finale??
1. to all the people who question why the employees took barbeques over unions, think of it this way people these days are more "I want what I want when I want it" than "I will be patient and not get what I want right now so I can get better stuff later" so, I can see this2. To those who questioned why the lady didn't call the front desk or use the assistant's shower (whatever else) she's SLEEP DEPRIVED she was too tired to think about it3. If an employee walked in and said she quits, would you have done a background check to make sure she was for real?4. They didn't even have a day to start the con, so Nate didn't have time to even think about all the things that could go wrong5. @TNT: If you even THINK about cancelling the show I will come down to your hq and take down at LEAST a few of you before I am taken down by security!6. Don't you dare die on me! I swear, this is one of the few shows that keeps me watching tv and feeling like it is all pointless drama7. John Rogers, Why have we never seen anyone from hardison's/Sophie's past?
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Uh, we have seen someone from Sophie's past. Does "The Blue Line Job" ring any bells?
Oh yeah, nevermind
I've been a huge fan of Leverage for awhile and been following your blog here, but this is the first time I've decided to leave a comment.I thoroughly enjoyed this episode. I found it interesting that you presented two different sides to the argument of low-value stores vs. mom-and-pop stores with Hardison and Eliot. And I really liked that Eliot's fixation was linked to his past and regrets and that the rest of the team was only interested in taking down this store after 1) Nate brought up the corporation's illegal practices and employee abuse and 2) they saw how much it mattered to Eliot. I think that made the difference between this episode falling into "Very Special Episode" category and the very fun ride that was presented instead.My question:Sophie occasionally brings in her theatre students for jobs. What exactly does she tell them to get them to do these things? Do they think these are acting exercises?
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Nate (Not Ford); she never gets sleep deprived in the first place. She's very much the type to demand things in a room be as perfect as possible (given she hates the low class hotels she's in to start with). The second or third type the annoyatron goes off, she'd be demanding a new room, at which point she wouldn't be sleep deprived to any significance yet.
By the way John, are you aware of the sound problems that some people were complaining about? I've read posts in the FB page of Leverage and TNT how the background music drowns the dialogues in some people. Don't know if it is a problem with the cable provider or TNT or the show itself. But people were saying that this forced them to just switch to another channel as they can't understand the show. This may hurt the ratings of Leverage. I hope it gets sorted out soon so that we won't lose viewers.
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I just want to say and this is just me, when I watch Leverage which I usually watch each episode 4-5 times I don't look at it to criticize I watch it to enjoy it. Some of these people get to critical about the what ifs... I love the show and hope for many more seasons, as for you breaking my heart the last show, no offense to Mark but I hope it would be like killing off Sterling and nothing bad happening to our beloved team
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Tom Galloway - at that kind of hotel when you call the front desk and say "I have this annoying noise, the sheets are itchy, I can't sleep with this irregular beeping and I hate your breathing guts, and I want a new room NOW." They say "gee, that's too bad." There's one person awake, that's the person on the desk, and s/he isn't allowed to leave that desk except in the event of disaster. I've been on both sides of this equation, and that's just how it works.
Follow-up comment: Nate has excellent taste in music. Night on Bald Mountain is the perfect epic takedown soundtrack.
I'm late getting to this, but I wanted to thank you for this ep.Hubby worked retail for several years (not a big box store, but a couple of regional and national chains), and this hit on every level, from the shaving of hours to just below full-time to avoid paying benefits to the ridiculous "team building" chants (I thought he was going to have a PTSD-style flashback at that one) to the subtle (and not-so-subtle) bullying of employees who have to take it because quitting isn't an option. He's also heard a version of "let's keep this off the clock," except that it was overtime work for regular pay because "corporate thinks we're paying too much overtime, so we need to be careful." Yeah.Again, thank you.
Also, as long as we're hypothetically casting Eliot's dad … dude, Sam Elliott. Seriously.
Great to see leverage back - this ep seemed really slow, especially since it's the first one after the break.Was that intended, or is that just TNT shuffling things around?Anyway, as always great fun to watch, though it sort of felt like "Leverage lite" - was there a budget reason for that, or is it just pacing/my perception?
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Oh, wait, an actual question! Or observation, I guess. Or a "wait, what?" moment. Yeah, that's it.In the past, you've hinted (or maybe said outright) that Eliot lied about his age to join the Army, yet in this he said he joined at 18. That jumped out at me, and I just wondered about it.Also, the Oklahoma/Kentucky thing. "Two Horse" gave off the high-school sweethearts vibe between Eliot and Aimee. So where do Aimee and Kentucky fall on the Eliot Spencer continuum?
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I think I'm going to miss you most of all, Showrunner.
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