THE JARODSTWIN RED FILES
Detailed Synopses and Reviews of the Third Season Episodes of The Pretender
THIRD SEASON, EPISODE #1: "CRAZY" [airdate 10-17-98]
The episode opens with images of Angelo suffering from nightmares about the explosion in SL-27. He awakens with a start, and looks around him.
In SL-27search and rescue personnel, with corpse-sniffing dogs, search through the burned-out rubble of what remains in the sublevel. One remarks that it was a good thing that the "tortion barriers took the brunt" of the explosion; another remarks that it's a miracle that anyone survived the blast. They come across a body... or pieces of one anyway.
In Mr. Parker's office at The Centre, Mr. Parker is attempting to put a minicassette into an audio tape recorder, but his hands are bandaged, so he asks Miss Parker for assistance. She takes the recorder fromhim, and inserts the cassette. The telephone rings: it's the search crews telling Mr. Parker that they've found a body. Miss Parker asks if the remains are Sydney's, but Mr. Parker says they'll need to find more pieces before they can verify who the victim is.Mr. Parker also tells Miss Parker that the Triumvirate is applying pressure on him to initiate some changes in strategdy as regards the pursuit of Jarod. The Triumvirate will be, he says, installing another agent in his office to assist in the pursuit.
Mr. Parker then starts up a portable DSA player and lets Miss Parker watch it while he tells her that Jarod was recently spotted in a Centre satellite. "His body survived the blast. I'm not so sure about his mind." The DSA shows a black-and-white surveillance video of Jarod entering the Centre satellite office #3B413, and tearing the place to pieces. When Jarod sees the video camera taping him, he attacks it and dismantles it.
At the Pleasant Wood Psychiatric Hospital, we see Jarod -- bound in a straight jacket -- being dragged down a corridor by two orderlies. Jarod is saying the words to a children's song, but not actually singing it. When the orderlies get him into a holding cell, and lock him inside, Jarod throws himself, bodily, at the door of the cell, and shouts, "Where are my mom and dad? WHERE ARE MY MOM AND DAD?!"
At The Centre, Miss Parker is met in the hallway by Broots, whose head is still bruised from the explosion in SL-27, and whose arm is in a sling. He tells her that the body found in SL-27 was that of Gar the Cleaner. As they're talking, Mr. Raines appears in the hallway while a pair of Sweepers. Raines is confined to a wheelchair, but otherwise looks unscatched. Broots tells Miss Parker that Mr. Raines had been spending a lot of time in the Renewal Wing of The Centre during his recovery.
At Pleasant Wood, Jarod, calmer now but still in the straight jacket, is taken to the office of a female psychiatrist, Dr. Goetz, by a pair of orderlies. (One of the orderlies, he learns, is named Jimbo.) Jimbo tells Dr. Geotz that Jarod was brought in as a "John Doe" by State Troopers who found him trying to lasoo Harley motorcycles at a Dairy Queen. When the troopers moved in to capture Jarod, it took six of them to take him down and restrain him. Jarod was, presumably, suffering from schizophrenia -- and the belief, at the Dairy Queen, that he was a rodeo clown. Dr. Geotz is accompanied, in her observations of Jarod, by another psychiatrist, Dr. Randall Blythe. Jarod looks at the doctors and asks them, "Where are my mom and dad?"
Dr. Blythe asks him what his name, and Jarod responds sullenly, "Jarod." Dr. Goetz asks what he last name is and, looking very sad, Jarod says he doesn't know what his last name is. Then his expression changes drastically, takes on a michevious, almost malevolent cast, and he says, "It changes every week."
In the Renewal Wing, Miss Parker goes in search of what Raines might have been doing in there during his recuperation. She finds instead, a corridor lined with silver-blue doors. The doors open onto small cells. In one cell, Miss Parker can see a bald person trying to drink jello through a straw. When she hears someone approaching, Miss Parker ducks into a cell with an unlocked door, and hides inside of it. Through the circular porthole in the door, she can see Mr. Raines be wheelchaired around by some Sweepers. When they leave the corridor, Miss Parker looks around the cell and discovers that it's occupied -- by Sydney.
Sydney looks drawn, but seems otherwise intact. She asks what he's doing there, and he tells her that he's being put through "re-education" procedures by The Centre. He believes they'll never let him out of there. Miss Parker tells him she's glad he survived the blast, but doesn't believe Jarod was so lucky. She retrieves Sydney's laptop computer from the floor, and activates the DSA player on it. Then she pops in the DSA of Jarod trashing the Centre's satellite office. Although Sydney can hear the aggitation in Jarod's cry on the DSA, he cannot see the images. He is blind.
At Pleasant Wood, Jarod is seated in Dr. Goetz office, still confined to the straight jacket, and talks to her about being abducted as a child by a place called The Centre. He spots an art pad on the doctor's desk, and his attitude changes. Smiling, he asks if he can draw something. "I like to draw," he says. The doctor tells him he might be able to do that later, but she wants to hear more about this place called The Centre. Jarod tells Dr. Goetz that he was held there against his will while other people dictated everything he did, every day of his life. They watched him through "eyes" in the walls and ceilings "that never blinked". He tells her that they kept him there so they could control him. Then he announces to her, "I'm a Pretender. I can become anyone I want to be." Then, very sadly, he says, "Except I don't know who I am." Jarod looks up at Dr. Goetz and gives her a sly, dismissive smile. "I've been a shrink before. It's really very over-rated... I've been a lawyer, too."
At The Centre Satellite #3B413 (a Centre Records Office in York, Pennsylvania) a supervisor tells Miss Parker that Jarod was employed there for a short while as a janitor. As it was just a small records office, no one there knew who Jarod really was or how valuable he was to The Centre. Using the office's computers, Broots discovers that Jarod had hacked into The Centre's "2 BAN 6" files, and was seemingly trying to discover a connection between Catherine Parker (Miss Parker's mother) and Major Charles (Jarod's--perhaps adoptive-- father). No archives were missing, however, and whatever information Jarod may have gleaned from his search was unknown.
The supervisor brings Miss Parker a box of the belongings that were left in Jarod's locker at the facility. There is a bag of psychotropic medications; books on schizphrenia, dementia, and psychiatric disorders, and a small flip-book filled with sequential pencil drawings dones by Jarod. When Miss Parker flips the pages of the small book, she "animates" the drawings, and sees that they depict the murder of her mother, Catherine, at The Centre by a man in a dark suit who has no face.
At Pleasant Wood, Jarod tells Dr. Goetz that Miss Parker's mother was murdered by The Centre... That Mr. Parker runs the place... That Mr. Raines lives there: "An emphazema-ridden corpse who drags around his breath of life in a tank." He says the place is also inhabited by "the thumbless man, Mr. Lyle... He killed my brother... He killed me once, too..." And that a man named Sydney also lives there. Of Sydney Jarod remarks, "He created me."
Orderlies take Jarod away to a padded cell, while Dr. Goetz and Dr. Blythe talk about his case. Dr. Blythe says he worries that Jarod seems to believe all the fantastic stories he's telling, and Dr. Goetz says she anxious to work with Jarod.
In the Renewal Wing: Miss Parker and Broots bring Sydney the items they'd gotten from Jarod's locker at the records office in York. Syndey tells them what all the medications are, and admits that he'd often worried that the pressure of living in the outside world and of not knowing who he was would some day send Jarod over the edge. Broots tells Sydney the titles of the books in the box of Jarod's belongings, and says that the only thing that doesn't seem to match is a book on the magician/ escape artist Harry Houdini.
At Pleasant Wood: Jarod has gotten himself free of the straight jacket, and is literally climbing the walls of his padded cell like a spider. He pulls his body up the wall to the ceiling, using the small spaces between the pads for hand- and toe-holds, until he can reach the air condition vent. Jarod enters the vent and follows it to another part of the hospital, where he finds the room of a patient named Mary. He drops quietly down into her room as she sleeps, and awakens her. She is startled by his appearance, but he reassures her that he isn't a threat. "My name is Jarod. I'm sorry it took so long for me to get here."
At The Centre, Miss Parker leaves her office in search of Angelo, but is intercepted by Broots who tells her that he's discovered that Mr. Lyle has returned to The Centre. Before Broots can get the words out, however, Mr. Lyle himself appears: nattily dressed, spick-and-span, with a thin clean bandage on one hand. Lyle grins at Miss Parker and tells her that he's been reinstated a The Centre -- as her partner in the pursuit of Jarod.
At Pleasant Wood: The next day, Jimbo takes Jarod to Dr. Goetz's office and is removing Jarod's straight jacket as Jarod gazes out the window at Mary. Mary is sitting in a drugged state in a wheelchair, outside to get some sun. Jimbo tells Jarod that Mary has been deteriorating ever since she tried to kill herself about two years ago. Jimbo then leaves, locking Jarod in the office to wait for Dr. Goetz.
As soon as Jimbo is gone, Jarod starts rifling through Dr. Goetz's desk, credenza and file cabinets. He finds a file on Mary, and reads through it quickly. He discovers some newspaper clippings inside of it, which tell about Mary's supposed suicide attempt... which took place on the same night another patient, Erica Michaels, disappeared. Dr. Blythe, the clippings say, found Mary and saved her life. But Erica was still missing. Jarod makes a photocopy of the article that has a picture of Erica in it, and returns the office to its normal state only seconds before Dr. Goetz unlocks the door and enters.
Dr. Goetz hands Jarod an art pad, and tells him he can use it to do some drawing if he likes. Then she says that he's told her a lot about The Centre and the people in it, but he hasn't told her anything about "Jarod" yet. Jarod tells her sadly that he doesn't know who "Jarod" is.
Later that evening, Jarod makes his way back to Mary's room, and shows her the newspaper picture of Erica. He asks her if she remembers what happened the night Erica disappeared. Mary's memory is fogged by medications, and she can only remember disconnected fragments of what happened. She and Erica were friends... Erica had a "pretty bracelet" that she always wore... One night Erica and Mary were running through the woods... Then Erica was gone... And the water was so cold... And she couldn't find Erica... Mary starts sobbing, and Jarod comforts her. He tells her she has to stop taking the medicines the doctors are giving her because they're making her feel crazy when really she isn't. Mary promises to stop taking the pills, but is still distraught, so Jarod hugs her and rocks her until she's calm again.
At The Centre, Miss Parker asks Mr. Lyle how he managed to get back into The Centre after everything that's happened. He gives her some evasive answer, suggesting that he so valuable, and so willing to whatever the Triumvirate tells him to do that he's an unequalled asset to them. He unwraps his bandaged hand, to show her how well his thumb has healed, and brags about how much he's sacrificed in the service of The Centre. Miss Parker informs him that she's willing to sacrifice every bit as much as her mother, Catherine, had to get to the truth about what was going on.
As she talks about her mother, she hands Lyle a photograph of Catherine in a metal frame. The frame cuts his (remaining) thumb, causing it to bleed. Miss Parker had Lyle a tissue to blot up the blood. When he's done with it, he hands it back to her. Rather than disposing of it, Miss Parker keeps it... She takes the sample of Lyle's blood, draws a sample of her own with a syringe, and draws a sample of Angelo's blood, then turns them all over to Broots, telling him to run a DNA analysis of all of them. She wants to find out if Angelo or Mr. Lyle is her brother.
At Pleasant Wood: That evening, Jarod escapes from the hospital and runs through the nearby woods with a flashlight, looking for the body of water Mary had told him about. He come across a small lake --Wilson Lake-- wraps the flashlight in a plastic bag, and then dives into the lake to see what he can find. At the bottom of the lake is a rusting Mercedes Benz automobile with a Maryland licence plate: ZYP 959. Jarod swims up to the car, and wipes a layer of grime off of one of the windows. He is startled to find a skeleton in the front seat of the car... wearing a "pretty bracelet."
In the Renewal Wing, Sydney is being antagonized by Mr. Raines, who suggests that Sydney had better eat the meal he's been given because me might not have many more chances to do so. In retaliation, Sydney hurls the food tray across the room. Raines exits... and Mr. Lyle enters the room.
Elsewhere in The Centre, Broots finds Miss Parker and tells her that the reason why Mr. Lyle was reinstated at The Centre was because her father had pulled strings "from Europe to Asia" to get him back there.
At Pleasant Wood: The next day, Jimbo puts Jarod into Dr. Goetz's office again, and Jarod suddenly turns to him and gives him a big hug. "Thank you for caring," Jarod says, then he steps away from Jimbo. Jimbo says sternly, "Give it," and snaps his fingers at Jarod. Jarod hands Jimbo his set of keys, and says, "Kleptomania is a hard habit to break." Jimbo responds with a stern, "Fingers aren't," and locks Jarod in the room. Once Jimbo is gone, Jarod smiles to himself, and pulls out of his clothes the small cellphone he also pilfered from Jimbo's uniform.
Before Dr. Goetz comes to the office, Jarod accesses the laptop computer on her desk, and hacks into the Maryland DMV records so he can find out to whom the Mercedes Benz was registered. He's not surprised when he discovers that the car belongs to Dr. Randall Blythe. When Dr. Goetz arrives, she finds Jarod sitting quietly in a chair drawing a picture of the candle holder on her desk.
Later that same day, Dr. Goetz is walking the grounds outside with Jarod. She tells him he's hiding something from her, and she'd like to know what it is. She says he knew exactly how to get himself committed, not doing too much, not doing too little, and making sure that no one else got hurt during his "rampages". Why did he want to be in the hospital, she asks him. He tells her he's there, "to heal".
At The Centre: Miss Parker is walking through the hallways when she gets a call on her cell phone from Jarod. He wants to know if Sydney has regained his sight yet. She demands to know how he knew about Sydney blindness, and Jarod refuses to tell her. She then asks him how he escaped the blast in SL-27, and he answers that if he told her that it wouldn't be any fun. Jarod then wonders how she feels, now that her family tree has been so shaken... "The Parker family picnic will never be the same, " he quips, just before hanging up on her.
Miss Parker goes to Sydney's workplace, intending to locate Jarod's psychological profile among Sydney's papers. She's stunned to see Sydney... and Mr. Lyle working there, together. Mr. Lyle had gotten Sydney out of the Renewal Wing by somehow convincing the Triumvirate that it was Gar, not Sydney, who was responsible for the bombing of SL-27. Furious with Sydney for working with Lyle and lying about Gar, Miss Parker rebukes him with: "You sold your soul to save your ass."
At Pleasant Wood: Jarod again finds his way to Mary's room, and she shows him all the pills she's managed to avoid taking. Now that she's not so drugged up anymore, she can remember more about what happened the night Erica "vanished". Jarod tells her that he found the car at the bottom of the lake, with Erica's corpse in it. He asks Mary to tell him how Erica got there.
Mary says that Erica was distraught because she was going to have a baby... Dr. Blythe's baby. Dr. Blythe had been raping Erica during her therapy sessions, and when he found out she was pregnant, he wanted to make sure the fetus was aborted. Erica didn't want the baby to die, so she and Mary contrived a plan to escape from Pleasant Wood. They ran out into the woods until they came to the lake. They were scared and disoriented, so the stopped for a moment.
Dr. Blythe drove up in his Mercedes, looking for Erica. He kept calling to her, telling her that he just wanted to talk to her. Erica, believing him, went to him even though Mary tried to stop her. When Erica got close enough to him, Blythe attacked her, hitting her so hard she was knocked immediately unconscious. Blythe stuffed her into the front seat of the car, and pushed the car into the lake. When the car was submerged, Blythe started to walk back to the hospital... bt he heard a "splash" in the water and turned back to the lake to see what it was.
The splash was caused by Mary, who'd jumped into the lake, looking for Erica. Realizing that Mary must have seen him attack Erica, Dr. Blythe dove into the lake after Mary and tried to drown her, too. Just at that moment, Jimbo and some orderlies from the hospital arrived on the scene and saw Dr. Blythe struggling with Mary in the water. Dr. Blythe told them that Mary had just tried to kill herself in the lake, and he was trying to save her. Mary was so stunned and aggitated that she couldn't respond, so, belieiving the doctors, the orderlies took Mary back to Pleasant Wood... where Dr. Blythe kept her heavily medicated so she could never tell anyone what happened to Erica.
Very late evening, we see Jarod sitting in a tree by the lake with one of the licence plates from Blythe's car in his hand. He calls Blythe on the cell phone, and introduces himself as Trooper Raines of the Maryland State Police. He tells Blythe that he has good news: fishermen found Blythe's Mercedes at the bottom of Wilson Lake. It's still too dark out to make out what might be in the car, Jarod says, but the car was identified by its licence plates. He then tells Blythe that he thinks it's very odd that, even though the car was presumably at the bottom of the lake for almost two years, Blythe never reported it stolen... and had kept making the payments on it.
Blythe arrives at the lake just after sunrise, and finds his car sitting the shore of the lake, attached to a tow truck. No one seems to be around it, so Blythe runs up to the car to try to get Erica's body out of it. He's surprised to find the car is empty.
Jarod appears from behind a tree and tells Dr. Blythe that he's taken Erica's body and had it buried; a dignity Blythe never afforded her. He tells Blythe he knows all about the murder of Erica and her unborn child, and about the ruination of Mary's mind and reputation. When Blythe tries to flee, Jarod grabs him, and wrestles him into the front seat of the Mercedes. Jarod locks Blythe inside, makes sure he can't get the doors or windows open, and then manuevers the cars back down the bank and into the lake.As the water rises around the car, Blythe starts screaming and begging for his life...
At the Rupert County Psychiatric Hospital in Rupert County, Virginia, Jarod -- now posing as Dr. Ratched -- admits Randall Blythe into the hospital as a suicidal schizophrenic patient who's just tried to kill himself. Jarod says Randall is delusions and self-destructive and should be held over for 72-hours for observation. Dr. Bylthe -- dripping wet from the lake water, and strapped in a straight jacket -- shouts at the other doctors and attendants in the hallway. Jarod tried to kill him, he insists, and it's Jarod, not he, who is the mental patient. No one believes Blythe, and he's locked away in a holding cell until an evaluation of his condition can be done.
At Pleasant Wood, Dr. Goetz is surprised when Miss Parker and Mr. Lyle arrive, posing as psychiatrists, and claiming that Jarod was a patient who escaped from their facility. Dr. Goetz takes them to the padded cell where Jarod is supposed to be, and is stunned to find that he's not there. Realizing they've missed their chance to capture him, Miss Parker and Mr. Lyle leave the hospital. In Jarod's cell, Dr. Goetz finds his art pad... and his drawings of The Centre... Miss Parker... and Mr. Lyle...
Later, Dr. Goetz is pleased when Mary is well enough to leave the facility and return to her family.
At The Centre: Broots enters Miss Parker's office and informs her that the DNA tests are complete, and are conclusive. Her twin brother isn't Angelo... It's Mr. Lyle.
Miss Parker goes to her father's office with the test results, but he, of course, already knows what they are... Lyle is his son; and that's why he moved heaven and earth to have Lyle reinstated at The Centre. Mr. Lyle comes in while Miss Parker is there, and he, Miss Parker and Mr. Parker just stand there and gaze at one another, masking their feelings, not touching one another.
The episode ends with Jarod walking down a rural road, talking to Sydney on his cell phone. He notes that Sydney has, once again, found a way to survive. After they hang up, Sydney returns to studying Braille, and Jarod thumbs a ride on a truck down the rural road.
TRIVIA: Jarod was put into Room 17 at the Pleasant Wood hospital.// Stats revealed on Randall Blythe included: 739 S. Villa Terrace, Townson, MD 21202, License # R6551V67, Expires 09-30-01.
BEST LINES: Miss Parker (when she finds out Gar died in SL-27): "There's one less vacancy in Hell."// Jarod (describing the Centre) "Think of Hell... with nicer furniture."
OUR REVIEW: We were a tiny bit miffed at the fact that NO explanation was given about how so many potential vicitms survived the blast in SL-27... and why Gar was blown to smitherenes when the others weren't. (If that WAS Gar down there.)
We're stunned at how easily Mr. Lyle was accepted back into The Centre -- considering the fact that he embezzled money from them, and killed a whole office full of their personnel so he could steal a computer chip that (presumably) held the genetic codes of The Pretenders. We're NOT surprised, however, that Mr. Parker would cater to his son, his only male heir, and make an effort to ensure his position in The Centre (when one doubts Mr. Parker would ever make the same effort on his daughter's behalf).
We wonder if "pretending to be insane" was cathartic for Jarod, allowing him to vent some of his anguish, and to tell someone about what happened to him as child (even if they didn't believe him). More attention to details like -- and less to the cellphone conversations between Jarod and Miss Parker which often accomplish nothing -- would've made the episode even more interesting and entertaining.
Beside the little annoyances, though, this was an enjoyable episode, mostly because we got a chance, again, to see the range of emotions Michael T. Weiss can affect with his facial features alone.
Jarod is dreaming.... In black-and-white he walks through the corridors of SL-27 toward a man in a dark suit whose back is to him. As Jarod approaches the man, Jarod shifts from a teenager to a grown man, to a teenager, to a grown man again, as he asks if the man is his father. The man in the dark suit stands in front of an open elevator, and on the floor of the elevator is the body of Catherine Parker. Images of the gun in the man's hand, and a metal-looking ring of fire flash through Jarod's mind as he screams... And abruptly wakes up.
Jarod is sitting in the front seat of a red rented Jeep, which is parked on the side of a little-used highway. Jarod shakes himself awake, puts on his sunglasses, starts the Jeep up, and drives off down the road toward an area marked Tribal Land.
At the Centre, Miss Parker is having daytime, walking nightmares about the death of her mother, and of Mr. Fenigor's statement that it was Jarod's father who murdered Catherine Parker. Despite the wishes of her father, Miss Parker vows revenge for her mother's death, but tells her father and her brother, Mr. Lyle, that she's seeking Jarod's father as a way to get Jarod. When Mr. Parker and Mr. Lylemeet up with her that morning, they tell her that they've found a website connected to Jarod through which he's asking the public for information on his family. Miss Parker says they won't catch Jarod through the website, because he'll keep altering the server, and they'll never be able to trace the source. Mr. Lyle agrees, but says he'll keep an eye on the site anyway.
On the Tribal Lands, Jarod arrives at the Dunson SA** Bar, where he's eventually met by a Native American man named Mike Bodie. Mike had contacted Jarod through the website's e-mail address, and told Jarod that he had some information about Jarod's father. When Mike arrives, he's walking with some difficulty, and leads Jarod over to a table in the bar where they sit together and talk. Jarod shows Mike the photo of his mother (and himself as a baby) which he'd gotten from Lewis (the caretaker at Oakview Lodge). In the photograph, his father, Charles, is just a shadowy reflection in the background. Mike says he can top that, and hands Jarod a photograph of Charles and Mike from the 1970's when Charles, known to Mike as Major Charles, had saved Mike's life. Mike also hands Jarod a hand-made "dream catcher", and tells him that it was made by Charles when Charles went on a dream quest.
As they're talking, Jarod notices that Mike is bleeding from his belly. He's been shot. Mike tells him that that sort of thing happens when someone's trying to kill you. Jarod asks Mike who shothim, but before Mike can answer, he's interrupted by the arrival of a blue truck with blacked-out windows which he seems to recognize. Mike leaves the table in a rush and tries to run out the front door, telling Jarod that he'll tell him everything he knows whenever they meet again. As Mike runs out of the building, bullets start flying, so Mike rushes back into the building, jumps over the wet bar, and heads out the back. Jarod chases after him. When Mike runs out of the back of the building, the blue truck appears again, and shots ring out from the cab of the vehicle. Some of the bullets hit the door frame just as Jarod is coming out of the building, and shrapnel hits him in the head. He falls on his back on the floor, as Mike jumps onto a motorcycle he has parked outside and drives away.
At The Centre, Miss Parker goes to the infirmary to look for Mr. Fenigor and get more information out of him, but finds, instead, that Mr. Lyle is there and Fenigor is gone. Lyle tells Miss Parker that Fenigor is dead, and all of his secrets died with him. Lyle then approaches Miss Parker and tells her that even though they are brother and sister, he finds her attractive, especially when she's angry. Miss Parker leans in toward him with a gentle warning: "You've never seen me angry." She leaves the room without another word.
At Dunson's, Jarod is seated at the bar, holding a cold bottle of beer to his head where the shrapnel hit him. The bartender tells Jarod that bounty hunters are after Mike. Mike, apparently, was responsible for the bombing of an ACM Mining Company rig and had jumped bail right before his sentencing.
To find out more about Mike, Jarod goes to Mike's property, which is adjacent to a huge spread of Tribal Land. Upon entering the house, Jarod finds the livingroom damaged by several shotgun blasts. As he looks at the room, he uses his pretender skills to reinact, in his mind, what happened there. He can hear the gunshots, hear Mike shouting, feel Mike's fear. Jarod is then startled when a woman, packing a heavy shotgun, comes up behind him, cocking the shotgun so he can hear it.
The woman asks who he is, and Jarod tells her he's a bounty hunter looking for Mike Bodie. Searching for a name to give himself, Jarod looks up at the GREENPEACE banner hanging across one wall of the livingroom, and tells the woman he is "Jarod... Green." The woman looks up at the banner as well, and introduces herself to Jarod as "Kim... Peace." She's a bounty hunter who's also looking for Mike. She wants the $20,000 reward money for herself. She says she won't work with Jarod to capture Mike, but accepts his invitation to coffee at the nearby diner anyway.
At the diner, Jarod and Kim share small talk. She notices that he has no gun, carries no hand-cuffs, has a rented jeep, and wears no wedding ring. She guesses he's NOT a bounty hunter, but is someone who isn't attacked to any one particular place. Jarod tells her he's from Delaware, so she starts calling him "Delaware" from then on. She also points out a collection of other bounty hunters in the place; all of them have come out to try to get their handson the $20,000. Jarod says ones of the bounty hunters shot Mike at his home and tried to kill him again at the bar earlier that morning. Kim tells him it's unlikely that Mike would be shot by a bounty hunter; the bounty's bigger if the prisoner is brough back alive. The worst that would happen to Mike was that a hunter might rough him up a little bit. Jarod says, "You didn't rough me up." And Kim gives him a wry smile and says, "I'm an old fashioned kind of girl."
At The Centre, Sydney goes trough therapy on his eyes to restore his sight. The progress is slow, but there is progress. When Miss Parker and Broots arrive, Broots tells them that there's been no lead gleaned from Jarod's family website. It keeps changing servers every 18 hours and is untraceable. Broots also went through Mr. Fenigor's records and found a Death Certificate on him, and a notation that his organs had been donated to several different hospitals around the country.
On Tribal Land, Jarod goes to the office of the Tribal Liaison, a man named Vincent, and tries to get information about Mike Bodie from him. Vincent, however, is more inclined to ask Jarod questions about himself than give Jarod any answers. Jarod tells him he has a photograph of Mike when Mike was a child, and wondersif Vincent knows who the man with Mike in the photograph is. Vincent says he doesn't know, but tells Jarod to ask Emery, the office historian. Emery, a college student, tells Jarod that he doesn't know who the man is. Jarod thanks them for their time, and leaves the office, but is confronted outside by Emery who says that he recognizes the dream catcher Jarod is wearing around his neck.
Mike usually kept the dream catcher with him, so the fact that Jarod was wearing it meant, Emery assumed, that Jarod was Mike's friend. Emery tells Jarod that he's got a file of information on Mike as part of the "Indigenous Rights" thesis he's writing for school. He gives Jarod a file folder full of newspaper clippings on Mike and Mike's "activist" activities.
That afternoon, in his hotel room, Jarod goes through the clippings while he's watching a DSA of himself a young teenager at The Centre.On the DSA, young Jarod is pretending to be a forensic anthropologist, reconstructing facial features from skeletal remains. His efforts eventually produce a three-dimensional sculpture of a man that is virtually identical to a photograph Sydney shows Jarod when Jarod's done with his work. Jarod has created a second casting, however. And when Sydney asks to see it, he finds that the figure has no face. Jarod tells Sydney this sculpture is of his father... a man whose face he cannot remember.
Looking over the newspaper clippings more closely, the adult Jarod finds one that shows Mike Bodie at a place called Dead Creek in the desert. Jarod takes his jeep out to Dead Creek hoping to find Mike there... not realizing that he's beeing followed by Kim.
At Dead Creek, Jarod does indeed find Mike Bodie, and the two of them sit and talk for a while. Mike tells Jarod that when he was a child, Major Charles saved his life. Mike had wandered out into the desert and nearby caves and gotten lost. Rescue crews searched for him for five days and then gave up, but Major Charles, who had come from the nearby Clearview Air Force Base, refused to quit. He kept searching for Mike until he found him, and brought him back home. Mike often called Charles by an Indian name he'd given him: "Soaring Eagle".
Before Jarod can get anymore details, Kim appears, shouting at Mike and threatening himwith her shotgun. Mike rushes off, and escape on his motorcyle, while Jarod tries to run interference by putting his own body between Mike and Kim's line of fire.
Once Mike is well away, Jarod returns to his jeep... with Kim following after him, arguing with him and yelling at him for letting Mike escape. She sees the dream catcher Jarod is wearing and demands to know where he got it. He tells her he got it from a gift shop, and drives away. Kim goes through her pockets and finds a paper wanted poster of Mike Bodie. In the photograph on the poster, Mike is wearing the same dream catcher.
At The Centre, Miss Parker has Broots, Sydney and Angelo gathered in her office. Broots has brought the sheets from Mr. Fenigor's bed in the infirmary, and is hoping that Angelo will be able to empath something from them. Angelo approaches Miss Parker's deak to take the sheets, and looks at her, very wooried. He tells her: "Revenge bad... Revenge makes revenge, makes revenge, makes revenge..." Miss Parker tells him he'snot there to talk about her, and insists he focuses on Fenigor's sheets. Angelo handles the sheets for a moment and a smooth smile drifts over his face. He says that Mr. Fenigor is feeling better now, then he pulls the sheets over his head. Sydney laughs when Broots describes the scene to him, and Miss Parker is piqued. She doesn't understand. Sydney explains that Fenigor is alive... a living "ghost" somewhere in The Centre. Where do the ghosts there generally live, he asks her. She says, "Renewal Wing," and heads off in that direction. Once she's out of the room, Angelo starts repeating a number over and over again: C-A-5-4-3. Broots understands that it's the number of a "Centre Archive" file, so he goes after Miss Parker to tell her about it.
Later, Broots meets up with Miss Parker in the Renewal Wing, and they's are both astonished when Mr. Fenigor, looking fit and smiling happily, walks right up to them and escorts them to his room where he's packing a bag to leave. Miss Parker demands to know what else he knows about the death of her mother, and Fenigor tells her that he doesn't know what she's talking about. She tells him The Centre murdered her mother, and that he had assisted her mother in rescuing of children from the place. Fenigor shakes his head, smiling, and tells her that The Centre is an altruistic facility. She asks him about Jarod, and he says he doesn't know anyone by that name. Fenigor then takes his packed bag, and leaves his room... still smiling. Broots understands that The Centre has somehow "scrambled" Mr. Fenigor's brain, altered his perception and memory, but doesn't understand why they didn't just kill Fenigor. The Centre, had, afterall, killed Catherine Parker when she knew too much; why was Fenigor still alive? Miss Parker says they kept Fenigor alive as bait for her to follow; while she was chasing after him or his "ghost", she wasn't focusing on the pursuit of Jarod. Broots asks who would try to trip her up like that, and she answers, "Mr. Lyle."
In his hotel room, Jarod is sleeping, sitting in a chair with his head on the desk in front of him. His nightmares have returned... He's dreaming about Catherine Parker's murder, and the man in the black suit, who turns to him and looks at him without a face. Jarod screams, "No!", and wakes up with a jolt. Someone is banging on the door of his room. Jarod goes to the door, and opens it. Mike Bodie enters and falls onto the floor. Jarod opens up Mike's shirt, and can see that he's bleeding more profusely now.
Jarod puts Mike in his bed and removes buckshot from Mike's stomach. Although there was lss of blood, there was no serious damage and no infection, so Mike will be all right. Unfortunately, however, Kim bursts into the room, her shotgun poised. Linking Jarod and Mike through the dream catcher, she had a hunch that Jarod would lead her to her prey, and had been watching Jarod's room all day.
Kim drags the wounded Mike outside and tries to manhandle him toward her truck. When Mike struggles, she pushes him against the hood of Jarod's jeep. Angry, Jarod approaches and tells her she can't have Mike. Kim grabs Jarod and bends his arm against his back, trying to pin him while she handcuffs him. With his free hand, Jarod gets his own set of hand-cuffs off of the belt-loop on his trousers, cuffs one of Kim's wrists and then cuffs her to the roll-bar on the Jeep. Jarod and Mike then steal Kim's truck and drive away.
At The Centre, Sydney watches DSA's of a child Jarod newly come to The Centre. His vision is blurry, but improving quickly. Meanwhile, Broots delivers a sealed metal box to Miss Parker's office and tells her it's the Centre Archive #543 box Angelo had been muttering about. The box has Catherine Parker's name on it, so Broots didn't want to open it. Broots leaves Miss Parker so she can open the canister by herself. Using a pair of bolt cutters, she breaks into the box and lifts off the lid. Inside is a black pistol with a circle-of-flames insignia on the butt: the same gun that had killed her mother... The same ring of fire that Jarod had seen in his nightmares.
At the Tribal Liaison's office, Jarod, Mike and Emery try to figure out who it is who's trying to kill Mike. It could be someone from the ACM Mining Company -- since Mike supposedly blew up one of their rigs (which he denies doing). Or it could beone of the bounty hunters -- although Kim had repeatedly assured Jarod that the bounty hunters wouldn't try to assassinate Mike; they'd try to bring him in alive. Mike explains that ACM was trying to work with the tribal liaison's office to get permission to construct a copper mine near Mike's property, but Mike wouldn't sell his land. But if Mike was killed, the property would be turned over to the tribe, NOT to ACM, so he doubted that ACM was trying to kill him. Who could it be, then, Emery wonders? Jarod decides it has to be someone who would benefit from the transfer of Mike's land over to the tribe upon Mike's death...
Jarod uses the office computer to hack into the offices archives and discovers that Vincent, the Tribal Liaison, had been promised $250,000 in stock options if he could get the tribe (and Mike) to agree to the construction of the copper mine. When Mike refused to settle, Vincent tried to kill him (and frame the bounty hunters for his murder), so that when the title of Mike's property went to the tribe, Vinvent, as the tribe's legally appointed liaison, would have jurisdiction over the land ear-marked for the copper mine. If Mike's property WASN'T included in the deal, the mining company would cancel their bid for the site and give Vincent nothing. Jarod, Mike and Emery then contrive to expose Vincent's plot and trap him in his lies.
Jarod contacts Kim and tells her that Vincent is trying to frame her and the other bounty hunters for the attempts on Mike's life, and asks for her help. Meanwhile, he rigs up a non-workable shotgun, and substitutes it for the working one in Vincent's truck.
That night, Emery calls Vincent and tells him tha Mike is at the Liaison's office and is going through their computer records. Worried and furious, Vincent rushes to the office and rather than finding Mike, he finds Jarod there. And Jarod is angry.
Vincent comes to the office with the shotgun from his truck, but Jarod wrenches it away from him and throws it outside in the dirt in the courtyard. then Jarod chases Vincent around the courtyard, shooting at him over and over again with his own shotgun, demanding that Vincent admit to all of his misdeeds. Terrified that Jarod might kill him, Vincent admits to trying to murder Mike for profit, and admits to trying to frame the bounty hunters, and even admits to setting off the bomb at the ACM Mining rig in order to frame Mike and get him arrested. Vincent then dives for the shotgun Jarod had tossed on the ground, and grins at Jarod telling him he's now out of ammunition. Vincent rises, leveling his shotgun at Jarod and pulls the trigger. Nothing happens. The shotgun Jarod threw to the ground, was the one he'd tampered with earlier.
Kim then emerges from the shadows with recording equipment, showing Vicnent that she's gotten his confession on tape.
At The Centre, Miss Parker takes the gun from the CA543 box to Angelo and asks him if he can empath anything from it. Angelo takes the gun gingerly in his hands and tells her, "Follow the Circle."
Later, Sydney arrives in Miss Parker's office to warn her that Lyle and Mr. Parker are heading her wa. Miss Parker notices that Sydney's sight is, by now, almost fully restored. Sydney leaves just as Mr. Lyle and Mr. Parker arrive. Before either of them can say anything, Miss Parker announces that she's giving up the pursuit of Jarod's father and will focus her attention fully on the capture of Jarod again. Mr. Parker is pleased, but Lyle is disbelieving and suspicious.
In the desert, Mike takes Jarod to the caves where Major Charles secluded himself to conduct his private "dream quest". Mike shows Jarod the cave paintings done by Charles: the figure of an eagle, a shadowy image of a father and son, an Indian symbol for "eternity", and a man standing in a circle of red flames. Half-hidden in the dirt on the floor of the cave, Jarod finds a cloth patch with the same circle-of-fire insignia on it that he saw in his dreams (and that were on the pistol that killed Catherine Parker). Jarod asks Mike what the symbol means, and Mike tells Jarod to ask his father.
Mike then leaves and allows Jarod the privacy to go on a dream quest of his own. Stripped down to his pants and an undershirt, clutching his father's dream catcher, Jarod curls upon the floor of the cave, puts himself into a state of sleep, and dreams....
In black-and-white, Jarod walks through a corridor of SL-27, and come across the man in the dark suit, whose back is to him. Jarod reaches out to touch the man, and the man turns toward him: it's Major Charles (as he looked 20 years ago). Charles smiles at Jarod, and the two embrace. Jarod asks him if he killed Catherine Parker, and Charles answers cryptically: "Follow the Circle, Jarod. Follow the Circle."
After Jarod awakens,he find Mike again and the two of them head out to the nearby Clearview Air Force Base where Charles had been stationed. The base was now shut down, so there was no one there Jarod could ask about his father or about the distinctive circle-of-fire patch. Still, Jarod is grateful that he has as much information as he has. He thanks Mike, and the two separate.
At the Centre, Angelo is alone in his space. He's created a circle of paper-balls around him, and carefully lights the circle on fire. He sees images flashing through his head of an eagle figure, a father and son, a ring of fire, and a swirling "eternity" symbol, and he repeats over and over again, "Follow the circle... follow the circle... the circle...the circle..."
DISCOVERIES: Red Vines, pigs-in-a-blanket
BEST LINE: Jarod to Kim when he rescues Mike from her at the hotel: "Two words... Hand. Cuffs."
OUR REVIEW: The bounty hunter story in this episode was rather thin, but we understand that it was used simply as the underpinning of the story of Major Charles, and how he differed from the "man in the dark suit" Fenigor told Jarod about. Knowing how much The Centre has lied to Jarod in the past (and to its own personnel -- falsifying Fenigor's death certificate when he was very much alive), it won't be entirely surprising if Jarod discovers that Fenigor was lying to him about his dad.
The whole "dream quest" sequence would have been more interesting and compelling if the writers had spent a little more time explaining to viewers exactly what a dream quest was, and how its "visions" were achieved, and what they meant. Our "ignorance" of Mike's tribe and its beliefs was a handicap throughout this episode. He and Jarod were always operating on an understanding of things of which we were never made privy. We felt rather "left out".
All in all, the episode was an acceptable (but not a great) one. Our major beef with it was the fact that the lighting throughout was HORRIBLE. Jarod was lit from the back, or put in rooms with little or no light, or lit only from the chest down so we seldom got a clear view of his face. Was that intentional, "mood-setting"? Or do the camera and lighting people who work on The Pretender just not know how to do their job? We watch the show to see Michael T. Weiss. It would be nice if we could actually SEE him more often!
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