Jump to content

Leverage: American Hustle


  • Please log in to reply

8332 replies to this topic

#3991

talea

talea

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 18, 2010 @ 7:56 AM

I have a confession to make, because of the awesomeness that is Leverage (and in no way am I saying this show is perfect, far from it), many shows that I formerly thought were beyond dazzling are losing their luster.


I've said this elsewhere: This is the first time I can remember thinking a show 10 episodes into a season has yet to produce a dud or even a "ho-hum" show. Yes, there are episodes that I like better than others, usually because the subject matter speaks to ME more.

But overall, this is the best run of episodes in one show I've ever experienced, which makes it unprecedented. Three things at play here, in my opinion:

1. The acting ensemble is just terrifically cast and they appear to be friends in real life. Good casts = good shows. Plus none of them seems to have a "star" complex. They dig what they're doing and they dig each other.

2. The writers have a clear idea of what they want to accomplish. And they deliver it. While rewatching the other two seasons I've noticed that once you play them in intended order one after the other, you get a magnificent overall arc that hangs together well. Terrific and very layered writing. This year's eps hang together even better than the previous two.

3. The 'ships are a tangent, not a driving force. The driving force are the dynamics of the team and the continuing evolution of each team member WITHIN that context.

Edited by talea, Aug 18, 2010 @ 8:00 AM.

  • 0

#3992

A Bit Out of It

A Bit Out of It

    Video Archivist

Posted Aug 18, 2010 @ 9:26 AM

I have a confession to make, because of the awesomeness that is Leverage (and in no way am I saying this show is perfect, far from it), many shows that I formerly thought were beyond dazzling are losing their luster.

But overall, this is the best run of episodes in one show I've ever experienced, which makes it unprecedented.

This is exactly what I've been thinking over the past few days. talea is on target, and there is also more to it that I'm still trying to work out. Part of it is the way they've created a whole world that can be experienced. Leverageworld is similar enough to real world that it is easy to imagine yourself in it, either as one of the crew or someone that they help.

Is it because of the attention to detail? The communication between creators and consumers? Trying to figure out what takes it to that next level. As natyanayaki said, some other shows are losing their luster for me. And I've become more critical of them, expecting them to show or explain things either in the show or later (like, orange box or ledger?) and to have characters that don't just exist, but live a real fictional life.
  • 0

#3993

akg

akg

    Stalker

Posted Aug 18, 2010 @ 5:29 PM

Maybe it was the general idea that, when all was said, and the con was done, the coal miners still had to be coal miners, because it was still the only damn job in town.

I was surprised they all went to work the next day. The mine should have been closed for a bit so they could implement all the new safety stuff.
  • 0

#3994

michiganman

michiganman

    Channel Surfer

Posted Aug 18, 2010 @ 9:49 PM

Now that the Owner of the mine has been arrested, who will be the owner now? How can that company still operate with all those violations, surely after the owner was arrested the State would have shut that mine down till it was safe.
  • 0

#3995

Chyna

Chyna

    Stalker

Posted Aug 18, 2010 @ 10:47 PM

He wasn't the owner, he was the CEO. At the end, Nate said that the board voted that the original client (whose name I don't remember) become the new CEO. So the owners are actually shareholders of some kind, apparently.
  • 0

#3996

j5cochran

j5cochran

    Loyal Viewer

Posted Aug 19, 2010 @ 12:24 AM

I'm new to Leverage, but I am a native West Virginian, so . . . .
  • That was a real picture of the state capitol in Charleston at the beginning. Most of the location footage, including the diner and the "Morgan Club", looked legitimately West Virginian, though the exteriors were too flat! The guests at the fundraiser looked real as well -- no anorexic blondes in mini-skirted suits.
  • The West Virginia accents were terrible, especially the AG. We are not southerners. Our accents range from midwestern to country, and in the northern part of the state, we sound like Pittsburghers. Bruce Davison did a reasonable job, though as a mine owner who puts down his "hillbilly" employees, he shouldn't sound quite so much like a hick.
  • Parker introduces herself to the Attorney General as one of the "the Maysville Laughlins". Maysville, WV, is an unincorporated town, with probably less than 50 residents. I wonder if they were thinking of Maysville, Kentucky, home of Rosemary Clooney? If the writers wanted to imply a rich family background, they should have used Bramwell. In the late 1800s, It had more millionaires per capita than any other town in America. And there is still a fair amount of money there.
  • "MSC inspector" should be MSHA inspector, unless the writers are trying to avoid using the real government agency name.

  • 0

#3997

Queenrikki

Queenrikki

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 19, 2010 @ 5:55 AM

Well, I just started watching Leverage in June (both a "yay" and a "boo" to Netflix Watch Instantly for that) so I'm pretty new, too. I just ignore all accents on TV because you know that there's no way they're going to get it right (I'm from AL, I know of which I speak).

Parker introduces herself to the Attorney General as one of the "the Maysville Laughlins". Maysville, WV, is an unincorporated town, with probably less than 50 residents. I wonder if they were thinking of Maysville, Kentucky, home of Rosemary Clooney? If the writers wanted to imply a rich family background, they should have used Bramwell. In the late 1800s, It had more millionaires per capita than any other town in America. And there is still a fair amount of money there.


The names were used likely because they cleared. The likelihood that they could be confused with actual people or places is something they want to avoid due to legal issues.
  • 0

#3998

Chyna

Chyna

    Stalker

Posted Aug 19, 2010 @ 8:17 AM

The names were used likely because they cleared. The likelihood that they could be confused with actual people or places is something they want to avoid due to legal issues.


Yep, John Rogers has said on his blog that they come up with town names that sound real, but that can't be confused with a real-life town. He cited a case from another show (one of the CSIs, I think?) where a lawsuit was filed when they used the name of a real town, and then the bad-guy characters coincidentally had the same names as two prominent businesspeople there.
  • 0

#3999

L80Bug

L80Bug

    Video Archivist

Posted Aug 19, 2010 @ 2:43 PM

Yep, John Rogers has said on his blog that they come up with town names that sound real, but that can't be confused with a real-life town. He cited a case from another show (one of the CSIs, I think?) where a lawsuit was filed when they used the name of a real town, and then the bad-guy characters coincidentally had the same names as two prominent businesspeople there.


Not so coincidentally, actually. The bad-guys were named after two realtors that the writer of the episode had apparently had bad dealings with.
  • 0

#4000

grendel

grendel

    Video Archivist

Posted Aug 19, 2010 @ 2:44 PM

Yep, John Rogers has said on his blog that they come up with town names that sound real, but that can't be confused with a real-life town. He cited a case from another show (one of the CSIs, I think?) where a lawsuit was filed when they used the name of a real town, and then the bad-guy characters coincidentally had the same names as two prominent businesspeople there.


I love Kung Fu8 Monkey (Rogers' blog) but never would have looked there had it not been for TWOP here:) It seems that they have a list of pre-cleared names for towns, people etc. to avoid anything like the CSI defamation lawsuit.
  • 0

#4001

Chyna

Chyna

    Stalker

Posted Aug 19, 2010 @ 5:18 PM

The bad-guys were named after two realtors that the writer of the episode had apparently had bad dealings with.


Seriously? Heh heh. I can see the temptation, but that wasn't very smart of the writer.
  • 0

#4002

Prevailing Wind

Prevailing Wind

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 19, 2010 @ 6:14 PM

Not so coincidentally, actually. The bad-guys were named after two realtors that the writer of the episode had apparently had bad dealings with.


I recall that on L&O:Mothership, Lt. Van Buren was on phone-hold forEVER trying to get her kid's computer fixed by the manufacturer: Hell Computers. Then I read it was because Producer/Creator Dick Wolf was having his own set of problems with his Dell. LOL.
  • 0

#4003

Chyna

Chyna

    Stalker

Posted Aug 21, 2010 @ 9:20 AM

I've just started my rewatch-with-commentary (after having watched each episode normally at least twice) and I'm noticing all kinds of little things I didn't notice when I was listening to the dialogue. There are lots of details that are so fun to notice: For example, in the pilot, when the team gathers on the couch to plan, Hardison and Parker both have their feet up on the coffee table. Eliot comes around the table with a bowl of popcorn, and he kicks Hardison's feet out of the way, then steps nicely over Parker's. Hee.
  • 0

#4004

natyanayaki

natyanayaki

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 6:09 PM

One of our crew's off-screen jobs? http://www.cnn.com/2...ered/index.html
  • 0

#4005

petunia846

petunia846

    Stalker

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 6:17 PM

Can't be...our guys are too good to get caught. ;)
  • 0

#4006

natyanayaki

natyanayaki

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 6:26 PM

Can't be...our guys are too good to get caught. ;)



I figured they were setting other people up? :-P

Edited by natyanayaki, Aug 22, 2010 @ 6:26 PM.

  • 0

#4007

petunia846

petunia846

    Stalker

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 6:29 PM

Oooooh, now that makes sense...silly me.
  • 0

#4008

natyanayaki

natyanayaki

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 6:32 PM

Teehee! :-D
  • 0

#4009

janet a

janet a

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:01 PM

Hee hee hee! That was so cute!

But what did the coffee cup say??
  • 0

#4010

johntfs

johntfs

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:03 PM

"World's Greatest Grandpa" I think.

And I loved the way Sophie's accent got stranger and stranger as the night wore on.
  • 0

#4011

mnementh

mnementh

    Couch Potato

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:05 PM

But what did the coffee cup say??

It was something like "World's Greatest Grandpa."

I'm proud that I called the waitress and the doctor as Parker and Eliot at first sighting, but I completely missed Hardison being the African diplomat.

I loved everyone's versions of Sophie's accent, and her ensuing indignation.
  • 0

#4012

morrigan2575

morrigan2575

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:08 PM

aww, my little Elliot/Sophie shipper heart grew 3 sizes this day. I wonder if Hardison managed to get a good picture of Sophie/Elliot?

I floved this episode. I have to admit I haven't liked the last couple of episodes all that much but this was probably (IMO) the best of the season. I don't think I've ever laughed this much at an episode before.

I loved how the team reacted to each other and right after Elliot started his story I knew who Parker and Hardison would end up being at the Museum. I loved that the story focused entirely on the team and I hope they revisit this theme again (although not too many times) because it was wonderfully entertaining.

On a totally shallow note, I wonder when this episode was filmed? It looks like Gina B managed to lose all the baby weight, she looked fabulous.

I love how with each passing story Sophie accent got more pronounced. In her story she's very posh, in Elliot's it's cockney, in Hardison it's Scottish and with Parker (being Parker) it was just a bunch of mumbling.
  • 0

#4013

callie lee 29

callie lee 29

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:14 PM

Certainly my favorite episode of the season. Loved how in each story, except possibly Parker's, each of them seems to be the coolest kid on the block. I also noted that Eliot's last name is Spencer, did we know that before? I am wondering if the poor security guy who ended up in love with Sophie's alias was able to keep his job.

One thing though, in the previews they said only 2 episode left. What the what? Did I miss something, how can the season be over so soon? Are they doing two mini-seasons, but closer together?
  • 0

#4014

morrigan2575

morrigan2575

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:22 PM

One thing though, in the previews they said only 2 episode left. What the what? Did I miss something, how can the season be over so soon? Are they doing two mini-seasons, but closer together?

Most of the cable shows are ending their season now so they don't compete with the regular network shows that start up in September. I imagine Leverage will be back in Dec-Jan when the network shows go on winter hiatus.

Certainly my favorite episode of the season. Loved how in each story, except possibly Parker's, each of them seems to be the coolest kid on the block

Especially, Hardison, he was practically James Bond in his story.

The other thing I liked was the fact that they all described the Head of Security as someone strong, intelligent and competent in order to explain why they weren't able to pull off their scams. When in reality their plans were foiled by each other.

Edited by morrigan2575, Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:23 PM.

  • 0

#4015

callie lee 29

callie lee 29

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:26 PM

Most of the cable shows are ending their season now so they don't compete with the regular network shows that start up in September. I imagine Leverage will be back in Dec-Jan when the network shows go on winter hiatus.


That makes sense. I know we were supposed to know more about the over-arching con (AKA, The One with Clooney's Girlfriend of the Month) towards the end of the season. With only two episodes left I wasn't sure what was going on.
  • 0

#4016

Nightmare Logic

Nightmare Logic

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:27 PM

And I loved the way Sophie's accent got stranger and stranger as the night wore on.


Loved this part. I thought this was funny as hell. The only thing funnier was that they all thought that the security guard was practically James Bond but he turned out to be a lovesick fool.
  • 0

#4017

Crs97

Crs97

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:28 PM

My favorite episode of the entire series! My favorite line was Eliot to the bad thug "If I'm not honest, you can't improve." So well written and tied up so neatly. Loved Nate's "you're welcome" to Eliot and Eliot's nod of respect at the end. Sorry to see we're coming to the end!

Edited by Crs97, Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:29 PM.

  • 0

#4018

workworkwork

workworkwork

    Couch Potato

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:36 PM

Loved, loved, loved this one!

Was it my imagination or did one of them (Parker?) shout "Dibs!" as they rushed out of the bar to go after that oil company executive?
  • 0

#4019

petunia846

petunia846

    Stalker

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:38 PM

That lived up to all my expectations. Easily one of my favorite Leverage episodes ever. What a fun, clever way to tell the story. I just loved how it unfolded for us, the audience, at the same time it was unfolding for the characters. The way things got clearer and clearer with each telling made the story was brilliant. I especially enjoyed that they used other actors to play the team members up until we know that that's a team member. I had no idea about Eliot until we saw him, but once we had Eliot and I realized what they were doing, I totally called Parker and Hardison. I loved the way Parker understood (or rather didn't) Sophie. That cracked me up. Soooo very Parker. And the different kind of knife she hands Eliot and the different ways she handed them to him...just fantastic.

This episode must have been a bitch to shoot! Kudos to the behind the scenes people for keeping all of that straight!
  • 0

#4020

Prevailing Wind

Prevailing Wind

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 22, 2010 @ 9:41 PM

Whoo-hooo! Shout out to the Michael Caine movie, "The Ipcress File" (or the Len Deighton novel...) http://en.wikipedia....he_IPCRESS_File

And Gutman from The Maltese Falcon!

When we first saw the waitress, I was really disappointed that it wasn't Parker.

And, yes, we've known Eliot's last name since the beginning. It's so rarely used, though, you probably forgot it, callie lee

John Billingsley brought more ST alum to the table, too, seeing as how he was in Star Trek: Enterprise. So was Coswell *really* a hard-ass or did he *really* have a crush on Sophie/Ipcress?
  • 0