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02 June 2006 @ 09:52 pm
I'm watching the ep where Anne comes to Paris, and she wants Duncan to put a coat on even thought he can't catch a cold, and he replies, 'we can catch colds, just not die of them.' I don't ever remember knowing that they could get any sort of illness?

in_the_bottlein_the_bottle on June 3rd, 2006 04:58 am (UTC)
I've often wondered about that. I mean, maybe th eir idea of a cold is like what normal mortals refers to as a full blown flu and all they get is a sniffle and then their immune system or whatever it is kicks in and that's it. That's their cold, a sniffle.

Ith: Sistersithildyn on June 3rd, 2006 05:37 am (UTC)
And if they can get a cold, can they get other things?
gwynfyd on June 3rd, 2006 05:59 am (UTC)
Well, they are affected by things. They feel pain, can be poisoned, they bleed -- they even die. Duncan has died many, many times. But they survive. They recover, and their bodies go back to normal. So, I would imagine they could get a cold, but it would be over very fast.
in_the_bottlein_the_bottle on June 3rd, 2006 06:03 am (UTC)
Yeah, like the plague... or maybe that's like the flu to them?

eveningblue: Methoseveningblue on June 3rd, 2006 03:19 pm (UTC)

Have you read Loch Ness's And Then Some? In it, Methos gets the plague, and he's had it before. And he dies from it. A couple of times, actually, before his body finally beats it.

It is canon that Immortals cannot regenerate limbs. I haven't seen any episodes yet about serious illness, so I guess that's up to us to interpret. I'd agree that Immortals do get sick, but that their bodies heal much more quickly than mortals' bodies do. Fanfic writers get to think about and decide just how quickly that would be, for various diseases.

Ith: Pink Ladyithildyn on June 3rd, 2006 08:01 pm (UTC)
No, I haven't read it, but it sure sounds plausible IMHO. Since alot of my recent fic has been set either in present day hospitals or in the future, I've been wondering about alien diseases that affect humans. Like Rigellian Fever from Star Trek [g]

And here's a question: what about immunity? Would an immie who got smalpox be immune from it after? Or would their immie systems totally purge all remnants from their systems?

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Ith: Sharpe - Batsithildyn on June 4th, 2006 06:39 pm (UTC)
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Hmpf: ears of lovehmpf on June 3rd, 2006 11:43 am (UTC)
This makes me wonder...
about severe, acquired chronic illnesses. Can they get them, or are their immune systems too effective? What about something ultimately lethal like AIDS - would that just be 'neutralised' by an immortal immune system, or could it turn into, say, a chronic-but-not-lethal (perhaps not even particularly serious in terms of symptoms) thing? Could a mortal catch it off an immortal even though the immortal doesn't have symptoms? Etc.

Yeesh. Can of worms....
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Sophie: sluggysophiedb on June 3rd, 2006 06:37 pm (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
Hehe, yep I've done epidemiology too (biological anth degree *lol*) - this really is a can of worms with so many ways to play it. My head's whizzing all over the place now!

I actually have a plot idea hatching for a fic evolving around the use of immortals as organ/blood donors and why is that a bad idea, but god knows if it's ever going to get flesh on bones...

*blink* ooooh, shiny.. eek, the possibilities.. some very very scary.. GAH! *gets the anti-bunny spray*
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Ith: Blue Girlithildyn on June 3rd, 2006 07:57 pm (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
I just got online. The things that set us all off give me a giggle :) But I'm thrilled! This is one of the things I mental arguments about, especially when I'm planning/writing fic, so it's nice to have real people to talk to. (you are all real, right?)

The poison/violent death question! I remember it being discussed on a list many years ago, and of course, no one could agree. I mean, what exactly is a violent death? Some poisons have pretty 'violent' reactions. How about falling asleep and drowning in the bathtub? Or an overdose of sleeping pills? I'm pretty sure that death by an illness won't trigger immortality. I've actually used the 'dying of a terminal illness, but it needs to be a violent death' premise in a fic, and I was fairly certain that was canon when I wrote it. Hope so, cus otherwise, Methos stabbed someone in the heart for no reason :) Ah, he'll get over it...
eveningblue: Methos Oh Reallyeveningblue on June 3rd, 2006 09:40 pm (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...

But why wouldn't death by disease "trigger" Immortality? Don't you have the Immortal pre-presence no matter what? How would how you die affect that?

Ith: Lilac Bridgeithildyn on June 3rd, 2006 10:20 pm (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
[shrug] Remember the episode where we see how Amanda became immortal? At the time, a lot of viewers thought she'd died of plague, as opposed to having her head bashed in. I remember it being categorically stated that Immortality can't be triggered by death from disease, only violent death. Come to think of it, I think that's when the whole poison discussion started. As to why, I have no idea [g]
She went that-a-way...: jinxedwoodjinxed_wood on June 3rd, 2006 11:25 pm (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
I've never seen the programme, but I do remember someone discussing a 'Raven' episode in which Amanda shoots a pre-immie rather than let him die from poison gas because only a violent death could trigger immortality.

Ithithildyn on June 4th, 2006 12:53 am (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
Oh yes! I'd forgotten that entirely.
She went that-a-way...jinxed_wood on June 4th, 2006 02:08 am (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
Okay, here are some wild and wacky theories that I've played with!

I was toying with the idea of 'Immortality' being made possible by an (super) over active thymus lymph (situated in the base of the neck and an important part of a human's immune system) I always thought that Kalas's neck injury was a bit suspect, but if you factor in the thymus gland (which is placed in the same approximate spot as the scar) you could go with the idea that the thymus gland had been damaged, and wasn't up to par when it healed the wound.

Then there is that 'moment of death' theory in which the brain does a last minute check on all the body's systems when it has been a dealt a death blow (And I sound like I'm describing DATA, don't I?) to see if it can repair it.

999,999,999 times out of a 1,000,000,000 this doesn't help but there is that lucky one...

In other words, theory number two is: A latent gene becoming active, triggered by a body death experience? (I was never convinced that Immortals truly died, I mean, did anyone ever check for brain death?)

Yes, I know these are the ramblings of insanity. I can't help myself!
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She went that-a-way...jinxed_wood on June 5th, 2006 02:07 am (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
Yes, I think psychology could play a big part of it two, though how much I don't know. The thing is, I think a lot of the decisions made about first death on the programme were due to practicalities. If all potential immortalsI actually became immortals, then for every Highlander, there would be a dozen geriactric immortals running around, after dying from old age!

I think that the whole first death issue will never be totally resolved, primarily because of the origin question. They're all foundlings after all...and I have a few theories on that too:-)

Don't apologise for the school=active brain thing, I know exactly where you're coming from! I've just finished a college year (mature student) and suddenly find my brain twitching from inactivity. That, plus the fact that I've just indulged in a major DVD spree (including Highlander), has my brain coming up with all sorts of stuff :-)
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She went that-a-way...jinxed_wood on June 5th, 2006 02:09 am (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
I had similar thoughts but then I remembered who Amanda's teacher was. Rebecca always struck me as someone who was very clued in.
Ith: Blue Poolithildyn on June 4th, 2006 06:41 pm (UTC)
Re: This makes me wonder...
Yeah, it is. And I now have so much more fodder for the the sequel to a fic I worte a few months back that dealt with brain damge/mental illness in an Immie! I've been wanting to go back and deal with the afteraffects of the event.
Ith: From Hellithildyn on June 3rd, 2006 08:06 pm (UTC)
*imagines Caspian being so nasty because of permanent subclincal liver fluke infestation combined with rabies* *eg*

Ewww! Which makes me think of.... wait for it... syphilis! What about all those sorts of diseases? I know a common convention in fic is that Immies are the ultimate in safe sex. But are they really, I wonder? Trust me to be the one to enter that into the conversation (well, I think I did, but I haven't got to every single comment yet). But hey, I make a random post, I go to bed, and I come back to find all this! I can't help myself.
pat: brotherspat_t on June 3rd, 2006 03:18 pm (UTC)
Talk about a can of worms *g*. I have a question. Everyone talks about Immortal's immune systems - is it *ever* discussed or even mentioned in canon that they have better immune systems? Or is it that they are effected just like we are until they die and then their bodies repair and they revive? I just don't seem to remember it even being brought up, except in this instance. And then Duncan's reply, to me, is that they can get a cold just like any other human on the planet, but if they die, they come back.
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Ith: Umbrellaithildyn on June 3rd, 2006 08:13 pm (UTC)
Tickleing at the back of my brain, I have a memory of a similar exchange between Duncan and... Richie? But that's all I can pin down. Anyone out there remember that? Or is it my imagination?
Mischief: Karmaem_kellesvig on June 4th, 2006 06:58 pm (UTC)
I think it was Counterfeit Part 1. Mac and Rich were waiting for Horton's people to ambush them at the barge and Rich was complaining that he was freezing and would catch a cold. Mac said not to worry, he wouldn't die of it...
Ith: Pink Poolithildyn on June 4th, 2006 06:59 pm (UTC)
Yes! That was it. Thank you :)
eveningblueeveningblue on June 4th, 2006 03:47 am (UTC)

Here's a riddle for you:

If the body cannot regenerate limbs, it would stand to reason that it cannot regenerate organs, either.

So what if an Immortal had his or her heart ripped out?
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Killa: duncan - faile02killabeez on June 4th, 2006 10:31 am (UTC)
Absolutely fascinating discussion, and I'm enjoying it muchly.

So if canon says 'no regeneration of limbs' then it's contradicting itself

It doesn't, actually. What we know about this is that Xavier had his hand lopped off in February of 1993, and he hadn't grown it back a year or so later. Nobody actually says anything about whether he will, eventually, grow it back. Nobody says anything about whether a year is an unusually long time for the regeneration to take, or when he might expect to see that hand again.

Nefertiri is a whole story in and of herself. Some people say that the fact that Duncan sensed her means that the "buzz" persists through death. But I'd say it's more likely she wasn't dead when he sensed her. Perhaps she spent 2000 years dying and reviving again. Perhaps it took her 50 years to grow everything back -- or 5 days. We really don't have any canon to tell us.

As for the violent death, that was made canon by Raven and by Endgame, for those who accept those two sources as canon. Connor specifically says it's the "shock of a violent death" that triggers Immortality.

I love all the ideas about why sometimes death lasts longer, and why neck wounds might not heal, etc. Some of these I haven't heard before.
Mischief: Evilem_kellesvig on June 4th, 2006 11:51 am (UTC)
In Rhiannon's Linewars, she suggested that an Immortal could regrow a limb but that they were so vulnerable during that time that they usually were killed before the regeneration process could be completed. However, if they had someone to protect them until they were whole again, it was possible.

Also, on the neck wounds: I always thought that if the cut was close enough to decapitation it wouldn't heal completely. Thus both Kalas and The Kurgan were left with scars. I guess that will teach you to mess with the MacLeods. VBEG
Ith: Wildwoodithildyn on June 4th, 2006 06:46 pm (UTC)
I've often wondered if a limb would grow back, it would just take decades.

My feeling was that Nefertiri just happened to be alive for those few moments Duncan felt her. Reviving and dying, over and over like the seas captain guy in the second Kenny eppy.

In the last season of Forever Knight they dealt with lomb loss in a vampire. Turned out they had to find the limb and reattach it so it would grow back together.
Ith: Pondithildyn on June 6th, 2006 04:45 am (UTC)
I remember nothing from Endgame [g] Except Methos' pink shirt. Or was it coral? I do remember drinking several lovely margaritas after though!
Ith: Shadow Willowithildyn on June 6th, 2006 04:43 am (UTC)
I would think that being an immie combined with torture would be pretty horrific. Years and years ago, I remember reading a fic where Methos was in a concentration camp during WWII. [shudder]