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About massofspikes

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    'Small Town Sherriff'

Millennium Group Database

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Me on Millennium

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  1. I presented this question as a related aside to a post made within the thread about the Polaroid Stalker's connection to Dion the Woodsman, and nobody bit, so I'm turning it into its own thread in the hope that some discussion can be generated, as I'm still unsure of the answer, myself. I'll quote it verbatim, with an extra bit tacked on: "Incidentally, does it speak of a weakness in the show that even these most important-to-the-canon plot points [in this instance, the PS/Dion connection. --J] can be interpreted and 'understood' in so many varying fashions--some wildly diverging from one another--that the viewer is almost tempted to throw up his/her hands sometimes and say, 'Forget it!', the whole thing having long devolved into a sort of slurry of vague possibilities and inferences and maybe-so's when, as far as I'm concerned, the situation in question called for less ambiguity? (See "The Innocents/Exegesis" for the ultimate in obfuscation, intentional or otherwise.) I consider MillenniuM a fantastic show, don't get me wrong, but I'm also a bright guy (or would like to think of myself that way) and yet grow frustrated having to refer to the Abyss website after watching every third episode to discern what in the world I just witnessed, exactly. [Or, rather, how I should be considering what I just witnessed. In any case, it doesn't occur so often anymore, as I seem to be more cognizant of what to expect from the program in terms of unanswered questions; or maybe I've become inculcated (or is it jaded?) to what was MMs tenuous presentation.--J]"
  2. "[A] red-herring"? To distract him from what? To make him believe that Dion was the Polaroid Stalker and that, by apprehending him, he'd rid the community of the individual taking pics of Catherine and Jordan? Or to misdirect his profiling powers while the Poloroid Stalker made preperations to abduct Catherine? Incidentally, does it speak of a weakness in the show that even these most important-to-the-canon plot points can be interpreted and "understood" in so many varying fashions--some wildly diverging from one another--that the viewer is almost tempted to throw up his/her hands sometimes and says, "Forget it!", the whole thing having long devolved into a sort of slurry of vague possibilities and inferences and maybe-so's when, as far as I'm concerned, the situation in question called for less ambiguity? (See "The Innocents/Exegesis" for the ultimate in obfuscation, intentional or otherwise.) I think MillenniuM is a fantastic show, don't get me wrong, but I'm also a bright guy (or would like to think of myself that way) and yet grow frustrated having to refer to the Abyss website after watching every third episode to discern what in the world I just witnessed exactly.
  3. ...Dion, "The Burly Woodsman," and the Polaroid Stalker? Who was taking pictures for whom, and to what end? (Both had walls covered in Polaroid pictures.) Was the Stalker taking pictures of potential victims for Dion? Even if that were the case, what's the use of a picture of some random person w/o some information on where that person lived, etc.? And, my God, I couldn't last fifteen minutes listening to Dion's mother's voice and off-putting mannerisms and cloying behavior, let alone...however many years he managed to pull it off. No wonder he went apeshit. Edit: Changed "if that WAS the case" to "if that WERE the case." Gotta' remember the subjunctive!
  4. massofspikes

    Looks Like A Mikado Rip-off

    Don't know if this show has any fans 'round these parts, but, even considering MillenniuM's quality--and I apologize in advance for this--I still believe Homicide: Life on the Street to be/have been the greatest drama in network television history. (I've heard that The Wire--sort of Homicide's non-network, foul-mouthed, even uglier [if that's possible] brother--to be better, but I don't get HBO...or any television channel, for that matter. Yes, I'm one of those TV snobs. ) In any case, during Homicide's last season, they aired an ep entitled "Homicide.com," in which a serial killer was broadcasting his murders over the 'Net, too, hacking/cracking into pre-existing websites and doing his deeds via video-feed. Granted, HLOTS had a year's worth of experience with the still-new-to-many medium in order to more realistically portray 'Net-based goings-on than MM did. (There was nothing as goofy as a hit-count-meter that advanced in real time, and the vid-cam footage wasn't depicted as being as terrible, resolution-wise, as on MM, but--thank goodness--not as good as on some programs and movies during those days, when the events on one side of the lens came through to the other end, broadcasting as smoothly as one of those picture-in-picture features televisions used to offer.) Unlike both "The Mikado" and Untraceable (which is so far garnering terrible reviews), the killer's decision to do so was never predicated on website attendence. He would merely use spoofed email addresses to send invitations among college campuses to witness what most believed initially were staged performances. Again unlike on MM, the killer was eventually apprehended. What's interesting about this is how such similar plot devices can "work" on two different dramatic formats. I get the tentative impression that most MM fans thought "Mikado" was, if not great, than at least good, while most HLOTS fans consider(d) "Homicide.com" one of its lowest moments--pandering, too sleek, too hi-tech, too sexy for a show that was more adept at depicting the soul-eroding nature of investigating homicides in the second most murderous city in America, a blighted metropolis where 90% of its slayings are as complex and exciting, motive-wise, as Doper A got sold baking-soda instead of heroin by Slinger B, so A came back on him...and not with a receipt, either. And then hundreds of variations on that theme. You have to say this--Frank Black may work with sick and dangerous criminals, but there's never a dull moment in *his* universe. (Well, actually, the two fictional universes intertwined thanks to the workhorse efforts of Richard Belzer, who played his Homicide character, Detective Munch [now with one of the many Law & Order spin-offs], in an episode of the X-Files, which crossed with MM, as we all know. Hmmm...Peter Watts must have a twin, then, too, because a man looking JUST like him played a grieving father on a 4th-season episode of Homicide.) Now, as for who got what idea from whom, it's impossible to tell. Something interesting, though, coincidence-wise: "The Mikado" aired 2-6-98, "Homicide.com," 2-5-99.
  5. Another thing about the episode in question. Is this a flub? Catherine, stowed in the mesh undercarriage beneath the Stalker's car, with her face pinned downward toward the street, sees broken yellow stripes whizzing past her vision. How would this be possible unless the Stalker were driving in the middle of a two-lane, two-way road?
  6. The whole point of the Frank/Stalker confrontation was to provoke in Frank an emotion we as viewers felt he never had in him: a certain viciousness, if you will, that would disjoin his connection with Catherine. In this sense, I feel like the scene failed for the reasons I addressed in the OP--I'm sure he was feeling anger as he stabbed away, but who wouldn't have been? And I'm sure it was, in part, the sudden coalescing of that rage that produced the adrenaline needed to overpower a man decades his junior. A scenario I believe that would have better realized the intended outcome, and done so in a more troubling and thus dramatic fashion--one that would have thrown into some real disarray both Catherine and the audience's opinion of Frank and revealed the slowly depleting ability of his to compartmentalize his heretofore hidden ability to commit violence like any of the other monsters he'd squared off against in the past--would have featured him killing a surrendering (or injured beyond the point of his presenting an imminent threat) Poloroid Stalker.
  7. Admittedly, I wasn't being completely serious when I made reference to Frank using his "abilities" to help himself in wooing Catherine. I was in part thinking of a Stephen King short story found in the collection Night Shift entitled "I Know What You Need." It's about a loner-ish misfit who, since grade school, has been in love with a girl. (Both names escape me at the moment.) As the story begins, we discover that they attend the same college and that she has no recollection of him despite their attendance at various schools together throughout their lives, let alone his infatuation with her. In any case, as the story continues, we find that, in every situation, he "know(s) what (she) needs," so to speak. Despite his unappealing appearance and her beauty, she falls in love with him. As it turns out, he's spent a lifetime mastering some sort of b*******ization of voodoo and has been using this supernatural power to forsee her every desire. Once she finds out, horrified, she cuts off all ties to him. What's haunting is his declaration to her as she leaves, that she'll always be unsatisfied with every man she'll ever be with, because nobody will ever know her the way he does, by paranormal means or otherwise. The inevitable question is, of course--if ignorance is bliss, and she never discovered his clandestine machinations, could their love for one another really be considered "true"?
  8. Well, you have to remember that he never chose the timing of his "visions." Say you were Frank, and you had a vision of Catherine eating a strawberry ice-cream cone or something, how would you deal with the question of whether or not to use this information to your advantage, esp. considering the fact that you didn't ask for it?
  9. Speaking of Catherine (now I'm spelling it correctly) and Frank's marriage and these very issues, I think it would have been a fascinating conceit for an episode to go back in time and, in some sort of flashback form, explore their meeting, their courtship, and eventually their union. (Would s3 be a good time for this, or would it have been too much coupled with "Sound of Snow"?) I mean, just how much did Catherine know about Frank's life, his job, his mission back in those days? Granted, Frank had yet to be placed center-stage as a leading character in The Battle Between Good and Evil , but why was she okay with things then? (Of course, a lot of partners in a marriage are "okay" with some shortcoming involving the other partner, at least initially, because s/he's in love with him/her; eventually, though, whatever the problem is can become wearisome.) I've also always been very curious about Catherine and Frank's apparent dismissal of the vast age difference between the two as a hinderance. Did Frank ever surreptitiously use his "gift" to gain an edge over other suitors when it came to knowing what Catherine wanted, perhaps? The episode could even feature a Terminator-like angle in which some form of evil spirit (unrecognized as such by even Frank at this time) tries to either sabotage the marriage (which provides this future warrior of light stability and strength) or prohibit the birth of Jordan (Frank called her a "miracle child," after all), which would provide even further evidence that, one day, Jordan will be faced with the choice of maybe taking daddy's place in The Fight.
  10. Something that really stunned me after watching the s2 premiere was the way in which Kathy asked Frank to leave, chiding him for perhaps going too far in his slaying of the Polaroid Stalker, and Frank himself wondering the very same thing. As a viewer watching the scene in question, from first knife blow to last, the kill seemed completely within the realm of what would be considered by most reasonable people to be justified self-defense. The Stalker did attack first, mind you, and Frank only survived by wresting away the knife and retaliating. Wouldn't you (i.e. whoever might be reading this) stab an attacker in such a situation more than one time, just to make sure he were dead? Now, what I think would have been very interesting, more disturbing, and a more appropriate lead-in to Frank's St. Augustine-style tortured ruminations of culpability and the-potential-for-sin-within-us-all, as well as Kathy's guarded reaction would have been if Frank had achieved hold of the knife and The Stalker had thus unconditionally surrendered, hands up...only to have Frank kill him then. To summarize, what Frank did never struck me as an act of rage unleashed, but simple self-defense.
  11. massofspikes

    Question about S1 in general

    WHEW!!! You know, when I posted this question, my fear was that I was going to be shrugged off with the standard "It's nice to see you posting here, but this matter was conclusively settled once already in thread _____; please use the search engine from now on." I never expected it to extend to four pages and elicit such vociferous opinions and declarations. Also, I admit, it didn't take long before the S1 references found herein started whizzing over my head. (The claim in the sidebar that S1 is my "favorite season" is some kind of mistake I need to fix.) As mentioned before, I've only watched "Pilot," "Gehanna," and "Dead Letters" in their entirety, as well as a portion of "Paper Dove" (My God! Is that Kathryn and Frank in...bed(!!!) together...locked in a...gasp...post-coital embrace????? I thought they were just roommates!) This particular (seeming) discrepancy about Frank's exact involvement in The Group reminds me of a scene from an old Simpsons episode where fans were allowed to ask Lucy Lawless as "Xena" questions about the show at some kind of convention; one fan's query revealed a continuity error that could in no way be rationalized or explained away. Her answer was something to the effect of "Uh...when something like that happens, a wizard did it." "Ohhh," the crowd murmurs. Because I absolutely HATE continuity errors in television shows/movies, I'm always trying to somehow "explain" them. In the case of MillenniuM, I'd never say that "a wizard did it," but, perhaps along those lines, events transpired involving the organization of The Group, the motives of The Group, etc, that we, as viewers, were simply not privy to. I realize...that's relatively weak as these things go, but The Group's motivations and actions--from S2 on--were so bizarre and ofttimes contradictory to everything we knew about them, I sometimes have to think, while taking in the S1 oeuvre, that something is brewing just beyond our peripheral vision. Perhaps this was intended. I see a hint of what's to come in "Dove" when Frank is sitting among the FBI agents, discussing the case involving the son of the friend of his father's, and the agents beginning prodding Frank about The Group's true purpose. Does its members really think the rise in violence, etc. (a questionable claim in itself) is somehow related to the approaching millennium? Frank can only answer, "I don't think it's the meat." At this state in my fandom (and I'll explain more later), I'm torn between regarding these apparent retcons as either true retcons that only a wizard's actions can explain, so to speak, or if we, the fans, can reasonably fill in the gaps.
  12. massofspikes

    Question about S1 in general

    I can see some combination of both answers helpfully provided (thank you, btw) coming together to form something approaching an answer that isn't quite a full-bore retcon. (Warning: some imagination and suspension of disbelief may be required.) In "The Beginning and the End," Peter tells Frank that The Group feels he's now considered ready to be privy to--and I paraphrase--more sensitive truths held by The Group, hence the "Soylent green is people" voice-activation code programmed into his computer. In S1, he may have been a lower-case-m "member" in some capacity, unaware that there existed a "higher plane"--for lack of a better term--within The Group. And then, beginning in S2...well, you know what happened. I still find it hard to believe that the S2 writers would so cavalierly junk the S1 continuity. I guess I refuse to accept it. On one hand, it's somewhat intriguing to try and piece together the seeming incongruities; on the other, it's frustrating that such a responsibility was left to fans. Or, as with so many of Kafka's unfinished work, do the gaps make this body of work more interesting?
  13. As I'll soon explain in the introductory post I'm working on, various circumstances led me to purchase the three seasons of MillenniuM in reverse order: s3, then s2, and s1, which I just bought yesterday. I'd never seen a single episode while the show was on the air, so the MM phenomenon was/is all still relatively new to me, and still somewhat confusing from time to time. As for s1, so far, I've only watched "The Pilot/The Frenchman" and some of "Gehanna." My question is this: in s2, Frank is portrayed as a potential member of the Millennium Group, being tested in various ways to gauge his worthiness; but, unless I'm missing something, he seems to be a full-fledged member in s1, working with Peter Watts, etc. Is he merely consulting the consultants, or am I wrong in my interpretation (or does something happen later in the season that explains this [seeming] discrepancy?)

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