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25 May 2006 @ 08:18 am
'The Messenger'  
Welcome to the eleventh installment of Methos Episode discussion. You can find the last one, for 'Judgement Day/One Minute to Midnight' here. All episode discussion links can be found over on the sidebar.

The Messenger, Air Date: Nov. 1996

Richie's found a new teacher: an Immortal who preaches a message of peace. An Immortal who believes that all Immortals can lay down their swords and live together as brothers. An Immortal who claims to be the oldest of their kind still alive -- Methos. Will laying down his sword in the name of peace mean Richie will lose his head? And what does this mean for the friend MacLeod already calls Methos?. ~ recap and quotes via tv.com


Next up will be The Valkyrie. Look for it on Monday.

Quotes below the curtain





*from the extended scene*
Methos: Okay, there's this Spanish guy, Alejandro Diego Spinofa...one day he gets called in by the Inquisition for questioning, red hot pincers, tongs, usual drill...now, all he has to do is say no, 'kay, very simple word. They take his home, his money, his lands, but he will not give in.
Joe: So what happened?
Methos: He died screaming in agony. But he kept his integrity.
Joe: You are one calculated son of a bitch.
Methos: Thank you very much, it's just a matter of anticipation.
Joe: Really...well have one on me. (pours his drink on Methos' head)
Methos: What the hell was that for?!
Joe: Just one of those unforseen dilemmas. I'm surprised you didn't ancitipate it.
________________________

Methos: Look, there are enough people out there who want my head for who I am. Now, I say, if he wants to play Methos let him.
Duncan: Even if it gets him killed?
Methos: Yeah. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Look at these boots. What happened to craftsmanship? I only put a thousand miles in them.
________________________

Duncan: Do you really think peace between us was possible.
Richie: I'd like to think so.
Duncan: Would have been nice.
Richie: You know, I don't even know what his real name was. I mean, I know he wasn't the real Methos. Maybe he wasn't right either, but he was a good man.
Methos: Listen, I'm sorry I disappointed you, kid.
Richie: That's okay.
Methos: Later.
Richie: Old timer, you got any words of wisdom for me?
Methos: Nope.
________________________

(about Richie)
Duncan: Well, it's his (mistake) to make. It's about integrity.
Methos: Okay, there's this Spanish guy: Alejandro Diego Spinofa. One day he gets called in by the inquisition for questioning, red hot pincers, tongs, usual drill. Now, all he has to do is say no, 'kay, very simple word. They take his home, his money, his lands, but he will not give in.
Joe: And so what happened?
Methos: He died screaming in agony. But he kept his integrity.
________________________

Fake Methos: Can anyone live for five thousand years and say they did nothing, risked nothing, merely stayed alive? It'd be pointless.
Methos: Some might think that that experience is worth saving.
Fake Methos: I'm not one of them, but we can talk about it.
Methos: No, I've got a prior engagement, I'm afraid.
Fake Methos: I, uh, didn't catch your name.
Methos: No, that's right, you didn't.
________________________

Joe: I'm gonna go check on this other Methos. Maybe I'll turn something up.
Methos: Maybe I'll go and buy some socks.
________________________

Methos: But it's got such a nice ring to it. No more fighting, no more killing, peace and harmony - don't tell me you never fantasized about that? Some young sucker's always gonna fall for it.
Duncan: Richie has.
Methos: Voila.
________________________

(talking about the fake Methos)
Duncan: I thought you were out wandering the world.
Methos: Tibet...yak butter plays hell with the digestion. Besides, I've had all the enlightenment I could use.
Duncan: Maybe you should've kept it to yourself.
Methos: Sorry, I must have dosed off. What is it we're talking about?
________________________

Methos: One speech from the wise one and you forgive Culbraith - what's next? Friendship bracelets? The Love Boat?
Duncan: I didn't forgive him, (the other Methos) just made me think.
Methos: (cocky) Ooooooohhhhhhhhhhhh, just don't think too long.
________________________

Duncan: Turning the other cheek will only get you slapped harder.
Methos: Has a nice ring to it, though.
________________________

Methos: Hey, grab a beer. There's a cold one in the fridge.
Duncan: I know - my fridge.
________________________

Joe: (Richie's) young...young people make mistakes.
Methos: Yeah, look at disco.
________________________

Joe: I did some checking on this (fake) Methos flake. (Duncan and Real Methos look at him) The other one.
________________________

Messenger: Can anyone live for 5,000 years and say they did nothing? Risked nothing? Merely stayed alive? It'd be pointless.
Methos: Some might think that that experience was worth saving.




 
 
 
Ith: Tea Ladyithildyn on May 25th, 2006 04:35 pm (UTC)
This is one of my favourite episodes. I love what I call 'Aesop Methos', and the snark just flows in this one. And Ron Perlman, who's great in this. For me, the storyline between Culbraith and Duncan takes a back seat to the Methos/Fake Methos one.

I've always figured that the fake Methos was the reason Kronos found the real one not much later.
enchantersnightenchantersnight on May 25th, 2006 06:58 pm (UTC)
"I've always figured that the fake Methos was the reason Kronos found the real one not much later." ohh I didn't think of that.

I really liked this one especially Richie's reaction to the Real Methos, the Culbraith and Duncan storyline was very good too (maybe helped by the visiting of Gettysburg recently and a general interest in the Civil War)

basically anything with Methos wandering around will do it (shallow I know) I loved the scene between the Real and Fake Methos very "out there"
Ith: Spring Girlithildyn on May 25th, 2006 08:35 pm (UTC)
basically anything with Methos wandering around will do it

No argument from me there.
Sophie: Methos5sophiedb on May 25th, 2006 09:36 pm (UTC)
Yep, the snarkiness is fantastic :)

I just love the way he treats the fake, both to his face and elsewhere. And poor Richie *lol* sorry mate, your mentor's a smug bastard, none of this zen rubbish (unless it involves beer).

You're probably right about Kronos - fake Methos probably assumed that Methos really was a myth and therefore a great con for any Immortal with the balls to give it a go!
(Anonymous) on May 25th, 2006 09:43 pm (UTC)
Episode
And Ron Perlman, who's great in this

Actually, while I enjoyed the episode, Ron Perlman did not do it for me. I loved him in his series, Beauty & the Beast. Always thought he was trying to bring the Vincent character to life again (sans the lion face) in Highlander and felt it did not work. He lacked something. Not sure if it was passion, conviction, heart, but I wasn't buying that immortals (especially Richard) would drop fighting for this guy.

Darius, he projected an authority that both calmed and strengthened. A man who's conviction was felt and heard just in his physical bearing. Even with Ron's larger frame, he never gave that off.

The interplay between he and Methos was also disappointing. I wanted to see more. Although the line about doing nothing was good - you could tell it hit Methos hard (but then Death had done plenty).

PW definitely was the better actor there. He put things into the scene that he could not have known at the time but lead he writers to where they took him.

Roberta
eveningblueeveningblue on May 25th, 2006 10:21 pm (UTC)
I really like Ron Perlman, too, and I disagree with what David Abramowitz says about him on the dvd--that he was just "phoning it in." He seems to have a wish that every character be eye-poppingly dramatic, but I think Perlman does well with the quasi-philosopher role.

Messenger: Can anyone live for 5,000 years and say they did nothing? Risked nothing? Merely stayed alive? It'd be pointless.
Methos: Some might think that that experience was worth saving.


Do you think fake-Methos rankles real-Methos here at all? I always think, he's got a point. Do you think Duncan would agree with real-M or fake-M?
Ith: Pink Ladyithildyn on May 25th, 2006 10:25 pm (UTC)
I really like Ron Perlman, too, and I disagree with what David Abramowitz says about him on the dvd--that he was just "phoning it in."

That I didn't know. Huh.

He seems to have a wish that every character be eye-poppingly dramatic, but I think Perlman does well with the quasi-philosopher role.

I thought the character had a nice understated sense of flim flam man/snake oil salesman. "There's one born every minute".

As for it rankling Methos... you know, I'm torn on that myself. It's one of those things I wonder whenever I see that scene. Is he rankled, or is it just that he thinks the guy's a total fool?
eveningblueeveningblue on May 25th, 2006 10:29 pm (UTC)
But is he a total fool? Clearly, it's the pov of the show that he is. But what's so funny about giving peace a chance?

Besides, fake-M obviously really believes in what he's selling, as he's willing to die for his convictions. You can't say the same about real-M. It's like the argument in "Chivalry"--there are some things worse than death, like not living according to your ideals. Aren't there?
Ith: Autumn Geishaithildyn on May 25th, 2006 10:35 pm (UTC)
I was thinking of it from Methos' perspective as to whether he's rankled or if he's something else entirely. And since I've never quite decided, my answer is I don't really know. I wonder if it's ever been asked at a con or something?

And that brings me to fake M -- you know, I was never entirely sure what he was all about either. Was he just overly confident in his ability to convince other immies to lay down their weapons, and he miscalculated?. And was his 'scam' was a way to thin out the field come the end, the Gathering or whatever? Or did he actually believe what he was preaching?
eveningblueeveningblue on May 25th, 2006 10:57 pm (UTC)
Oh, that's a good point, I never even thought it could be a strategy, though of course it could have been. I really thought he believed it.

Ekaterinn: you're joking right? (by beeej)ekaterinn on May 25th, 2006 11:53 pm (UTC)
I think he really believed it - but I also think he was relatively young. Preaching peace to people who chop each others' heads off regularly is *not* a good survival tatic. Though there was also something of oily preacher man about him too...
(Anonymous) on May 26th, 2006 01:53 am (UTC)
" Was he just overly confident in his ability to convince other immies to lay down their weapons, and he miscalculated?."

It was hard to tell. But I thought he did believe in his message, he was just the wrong person to spread it. I think FM knew he was a phony but was using a name that would spread his message. And who better then a 5,000 year old myth. However, when RM questioned him, you could tell he knew that his secret was out.

Roberta
(Anonymous) on May 26th, 2006 01:58 am (UTC)
"Is he rankled, or is it just that he thinks the guy's a total fool?"


He's just easily amused! And, nothing is more amusing then playing cat and mouse. Especially when you are the cat with an easy mark like the fake Methos.

Not to mention, if headhunters are looking for the fake Methos they will not be looking for him.

Roberta
Ekaterinn: duncan and horse (by beeej)ekaterinn on May 25th, 2006 09:37 pm (UTC)
I love Methos's insistance on not dispensing (much) wisdom and his sense of pragmatism in letting the fake Methos take the heat for him. We also see that his wrist is blank, evidence of the fact that he has indeed cut his ties to the Watchers after Joe's trial and the death of Jacob Galati.

This episode also highlights one of the themes of the series as a whole: the general wish of Duncan (and most of his friends) to live a peaceful life - and the immpossibilty of doing so.
eveningblue: Methos Oh Reallyeveningblue on May 25th, 2006 10:17 pm (UTC)
I love Methos's insistance on not dispensing (much) wisdom and his sense of pragmatism in letting the fake Methos take the heat for him.

Yes, I agree. Methos's way of "dispensing wisdom" seems to be telling stories from his past. Like the Christians and the lions story he tells in "Finale." His wisdom, what there is of it, comes through his stories.

Ith: Lilac Bridgeithildyn on May 25th, 2006 10:19 pm (UTC)
Exactly why I think of that as "Aesop" Methos :)

(loved Aesop's Fables as a kid)
Ekaterinn: methos (by kathyh)ekaterinn on May 25th, 2006 11:49 pm (UTC)
"I am very old and wise."
*nods* Exactly! And they're focused on life. Propensities to offer Duncan his head beside, Methos is probably well of the more well-adjusted Immortals we see. He'd had to be, to survive.
Ekaterinnekaterinn on May 25th, 2006 11:54 pm (UTC)
Re: "I am very old and wise."
*probably one of

gah, stupid fingers
eveningblue: Methoseveningblue on May 25th, 2006 10:23 pm (UTC)

I love this episode, as you know from my recent discussion about the bed scene.

Here's a question: when Joe goes to "check on fake Methos," and then comes back to say fake-M has left a trail of dead Immortals behind him, where does Joe get this information? It's confusing, because how would the Watchers know this Methos was a fake, if they didn't know who he really was? Also, wouldn't Duncan have been hip to the fact that there was a fake-M if Joe knew about it? This confuses me, and seems like a plot hole.
Ith: Blue Girlithildyn on May 25th, 2006 10:29 pm (UTC)
I love this episode, as you know from my recent discussion about the bed scene.

I remember! That was a lot of fun.

Here's a question: when Joe goes to "check on fake Methos," and then comes back to say fake-M has left a trail of dead Immortals behind him, where does Joe get this information? It's confusing, because how would the Watchers know this Methos was a fake, if they didn't know who he really was?

Dang! You know, I never thought about that! It's like my "how did Stephen Keane know Mac killed Sean" tick [g] Hmmm...
Ekaterinn: sure i believe youekaterinn on May 25th, 2006 11:46 pm (UTC)
t's confusing, because how would the Watchers know this Methos was a fake, if they didn't know who he really was?

Maybe there's some dissension about that very point in the Watchers - I can picture "Adam Pierson" being amused as he argues for the validity of his project. *g* A better explanation might be that this "fake Methos" has turned up relatively recently and it just doesn't seem plausible that he was really 5,000 years old. After all, he's an older gent preaching peace and forgiveness - it doesn't seem likely that this is the guy who has survived for 5,000 years.

Also, wouldn't Duncan have been hip to the fact that there was a fake-M if Joe knew about it?

*shrugs* Joe wouldn't neccesarily tell Duncan everything, would he? "Fake Methos" is not relevant to their lives until he shows up.

Though, these are just my thoughts!
eveningblue: Methoseveningblue on May 25th, 2006 11:56 pm (UTC)
I'm going to have to re-watch (not a big sacrifice!) but there's something about this scene that doesn't sit right with me. How would the Watchers know he was fake Methos if they didn't know real Methos existed? Why wouldn't Adam Pierson point them in the direction of this guy--after all, real Methos seems perfectly willing to let fake Methos keep on playing him.

It would have made more sense to me if Joe had come back with information about fake-M and his real identity. Instead, all he says is that this guy leaves a trail of dead Immortals behind him. Something about it bothers me.
Ekaterinn: methos/duncan/tea = OTP3! (by beeej)ekaterinn on May 26th, 2006 12:02 am (UTC)
Well, in "Methos", Joe says to Duncan that Methos is real, just elusive, which would imply that the Watchers believe that Methos exist - they just don't know where he is or what he looks like. *g* Maybe Fake Methos showed up when the real Methos was sighted somewhere else? And Adam might have investigated Fake Methos has part of his work on the Methos Chronicles. Hmmm.

Actually, I think you're right, and this is a plot hole. I'm sure we could come up with some kind of convincing explanation though!
Ith: Pink Ladyithildyn on May 26th, 2006 12:06 am (UTC)
Actually, I think you're right, and this is a plot hole. I'm sure we could come up with some kind of convincing explanation though!

The same 'Immie Watcher News Agency' that told Stephen Keane about Sean, obviously told Joe about fake Methos [g]

Maybe the Watchers have Watchers.... the ones from Buffy! Okay, my brain just broke.
pat: chivalrymepat_t on May 30th, 2006 11:47 am (UTC)
I was going to read all the comments before giving my own *coffs* pearls of wisdom - don't laugh. I have pearls you know - they're just still in the oysters right now.

Oddly enough, I don't see this as a plot hole. Why?

First I agree that this person just sort of popped up recently. Methos tells Duncan that he's heard rumors about a Methos going around preaching his message. So if Methos has heard rumors - so have the Watchers. That doesn't mean they believe it is Methos or that they know who the guy is. When Methos tells Richie about himself and Richie storms off - that leaves Joe Duncan and Methos. Joe says then that he is going to find out anything he can on the guy.

So he goes to the records and pulls up anything he can find out about this guys activity. What the Watchers have is that someone recently has been going around saying he's Methos and talking other Immortals into putting their swords down. He leaves town and the other hapless Immortals end up losing their heads to someone else.

That is something the other Immortal's Watchers would have recorded. No one said that the other Watchers pegged the fake Methos as fake. Even though I doubt they would have believed that the real Methos would have popped up after 5000 years and announced himself. In any case the only ones who peg him as the fake Methos are Joe and Duncan who know who Methos really is and do know the guy is fake. No where does Joe say the Watchers know the guy is fake.

And I love how Joe says he found some stuff on the Methos flake and he and Duncan both pause and look at *our* Methos and then Joe says : "the other one."

Then all Joe tells them is the little bit recorded by the Wathcers of the Immortals that were killed or by Watchers who witnessed this guy coming up and preaching to their Immortals.
Ith: Bloom No Moreithildyn on May 30th, 2006 04:28 pm (UTC)
I was going to read all the comments before giving my own *coffs* pearls of wisdom - don't laugh. I have pearls you know - they're just still in the oysters right now.

Hey, don't mock your pearls! Other than the one rather significant difference we have when it comes to HL, I nod lots and lots when I read your comments, with lots of (usually) mental 'uh huhs' :)
pat: lie to mepat_t on May 30th, 2006 07:06 pm (UTC)
Other than the one rather significant difference we have when it comes to HL

lol, and what would that be? The fact that Duncan and methos have the hots for one another *g*?
Ith: Sharpe - Batsithildyn on May 30th, 2006 07:17 pm (UTC)
Oh! I'd forgotten that one! I was actually talking about whether Methos drinks Coke or Pepsi [weg]

That's the question that rips fandoms apart.

[snorfle]

(no, the tea didn't help. I'm still feeling bizarre)
pat: fine messpat_t on May 30th, 2006 07:20 pm (UTC)
hee, thanks. Made me laugh. Actually I'd like this question asked and answered:

Does Methos like beer or whiskey better?
Ith: yoda guyithildyn on May 30th, 2006 07:25 pm (UTC)
I think it probably depends on his mood, the situation, and just how much bang for his buck he's looking for.

That's my answer, and I'm sticking to it! (for now at least)
Unovisunovis on May 26th, 2006 11:29 am (UTC)
This "Methos" seems to have attracted a lot of attention -- it's suggested in CAH that his reputation brought Kronos to Seacouver. It's reasonable that he'd have been checked out and reported by the Watchers of the Immortals who had visited him, and those who had visited him and died. The Watchers, after all, believed in Methos enough to have at least two researchers assigned to his files. However, his authenticity could have been in question (and there may have been other fakes recorded as such in Watcher files). As Adam Pierson, Methos would have had motive to register the false Methos as a questionable figure -- maybe real, as a red herring; maybe a fake, to keep his position within the Watchers secure.
(Anonymous) on May 26th, 2006 03:10 pm (UTC)
"As Adam Pierson, Methos would have had motive to register the false Methos as a questionable figure -- maybe real, as a red herring;"

Agreed, in fact I think I remember Methos saying - "so he is here" or some such thing, when Duncan comes in the loft and goes at him for BSing Richie on this peace thing (of course Methos on bed may have fried my brain for everything after it).

Thus, if I remember correctly, it would be clear the Watchers already knew about the FM and Adam vetted him out as a fake (or potential fake). They may still have been searching for his "real" identity, however. Need to go back and watch episode again.

Roberta
eveningblueeveningblue on May 26th, 2006 12:50 am (UTC)
Something else I've been meaning to ask about this episode: what the hell is Methos doing to his boots? What kind of tool is it that he gets out of his knapsack? I have never done repair work on my hiking boots so I have no idea what he's doing!

Unovisunovis on May 26th, 2006 11:31 am (UTC)
It's a small pliers. He seems to be fiddling with a nail, either part of the sole or something sticking in the boot.
Laurie odell: dmprofilescyberducks on May 26th, 2006 12:51 am (UTC)
Great Methos eppie! I think quite a few Methos themes often used in fic come from this eppie.

The only weak part for me was Ron Pearlman as the fake Methos - he really didn't impress me with his acting in this one - he seemed to be phoning it in.
Unovis: Methos blueunovis on May 26th, 2006 11:34 am (UTC)
Yeah -- even before the commentaries, his perfomance struck me as awfully flat. He didn't seem compelling enough to be Methos or to attract even lame-brain Richie to follow him. During the confrontation with Methos he only seemed half there. A pity, because it was a part someone could have injected real life into.
eveningblue: Methoseveningblue on May 26th, 2006 02:04 am (UTC)
Oh, one more thing I wanted to mention!

I noticed how he pronounced the Spanish name, Alejandro Diego Spinoza, with a very distinct Spanish accent. This is in sharp contrast to the way he says "Mi casa es su casa" in "Methos," not even really trying to make it sound right.

Methos is supposed to be this great chameleon, right, so if he'd ever lived in Spain he'd be able to do a perfect accent. Isn't he also supposed to be a language expert?

It always jars me that he doesn't pronounce "Mi casa es su casa" properly, and I wonder if this was a deliberate attempt to somehow correct that.

(I'm sure we could come up with some fanficcy reasons for the discrepency.)
Unovisunovis on May 26th, 2006 11:38 am (UTC)
Almost all the accents and readings in foreign languages other than French in the show are horrible (Adrian Paul's, outstandingly -- his Russian and German and Scots are dreadful). It's just one of those things in this show you have to blink away, like the magically appearing katanas and the lack of blood.

[heh, rash of comments because I just came across this, compiling links]
keerawakeerawa on May 30th, 2006 07:08 am (UTC)
It always jars me that he doesn't pronounce "Mi casa es su casa" properly

Never bothered me one bit. He's not saying a phrase in Spanish, he's using an English phrase that comes from Spanish. Same as if you were calling in a "Mayday", you wouldn't use the orignal French term. I'm a native English speaker with a decent Japanese accent. When I'm talking about the vity of Tokyo to English-speakers, I don't pronounce it the way I would in Japan. They wouldn't know what the hell I was talking about!
pat: Duncanpastpat_t on May 30th, 2006 11:53 am (UTC)
Let me also add here that in Methos - Methos was not letting Duncan MacLeod in on who he was. He had a very specific impression he wanted to make on Mac. One of vulnerablitiy and youth. He didn't let Mac see the man that he was until after Chivalry. Each Methos episode was, in fact, an unveiling of who the man was and what he was capable of. And in my mind, you can bet Duncan was making these same mental notes as well.
keerawakeerawa on May 30th, 2006 07:10 am (UTC)
I think my favorite part of this episode is when Richie, Methos, Joe and MacLeod are chatting in the bar.

Richie asks why the fake Methos would offer him his head. MacLeod says, "Because he was afraid to fight you!" Methos offers from his bar stool, "Or maybe he knew you wouldn't take it."
pat: ruthlesspat_t on May 30th, 2006 12:03 pm (UTC)
Okay - do I have time before work to comment? First I see in the above quote that when Joe says:"I did some checking on this Methos flake." You then say Duncan and Methos look at him. Nope. Go look at the scene again. Joe and Duncan give Methos a look when Joe says "Methos flake' and then Joe clarifies "the othe one."
lol, it really was funny in an off-handed subtle way.


I have to agree that I didn't think Ron gave his best performance. I didn't feel as strongly as David A, but then David wrote the script with a very specific type of person in mind. And to him Ron did not deliver the character he had created on paper. I would have a hard time believing other Immortals putting down their swords to follow this man. He lacked the charisma needed for people to follow him.

One of the things I noticed and loved about this episode was Methos and how *his* reaction to the guy changed.

In the first scene he was very cool and treating it very casually. Talking about flattery and how it saved his head if people thought someone else was Methos. How his name doesn't have a "patent" on it. And was basically yanking Duncan's chain the whole time.

Then after meeting the guy and after the guy got under his skin with the "do nothing" comment - Methos' entire attitude changed. Oh he was hot then that this *fake* was out there pretending to be him. He was in Joe's ranting and raving and talking about the Love Boat and irritating the snot out of both Duncan and Joe.

A complete turn around in his feelings and reactions. To me this was one of those moments into the *real* Methos and his feelings and reactions. That guy got him where he lived. And sarcastic Methos was hot hot hot. Personally, if whats his name hadn't killed fake Methos, I think the real Methos would have run into him later when Duncan would have been none the wiser.

And speaking of Culbreth - was that not the lamest back story you've ever seen? They should have put it and the motorcycle scenes together in one show and then trashed it for the complete dreg that it was.
Ith: From Hellithildyn on May 30th, 2006 04:34 pm (UTC)
A complete turn around in his feelings and reactions. To me this was one of those moments into the *real* Methos and his feelings and reactions. That guy got him where he lived. And sarcastic Methos was hot hot hot. Personally, if whats his name hadn't killed fake Methos, I think the real Methos would have run into him later when Duncan would have been none the wiser.

[nods] I agree, it was one of those 'real Methos' moments, with a hint of what we would see a few episodes later. He does cold like nobody's business.

And speaking of Culbreth - was that not the lamest back story you've ever seen? They should have put it and the motorcycle scenes together in one show and then trashed it for the complete dreg that it was.

Yeah, that part of the ep didn't do anything for me.