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Old 02-10-2003, 12:46 PM   #15
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Article 1684:
A Dissection of Mirror Image

Date: 03/28/2001
From: tina_als_girl

Here is a more detailed breakdown of Mirror Image using the Wizard of Oz analogy... I find that it takes much of the confusion away, at least, for me...

First of all, WOO (Wizard of Oz) was all a dream. Well, most of it, that is. And this is what I believe Sam's Mirror Image Leap was from the beginning up until he Leaped into Beth's house.

My theory is this: After Sam Leaped out of Elvis, he was in the place he usually goes between Leaps. GTFW decides that it's time for Sam to know that he *can* choose to go home. So, he/she/it decides to do this by way of a dream. Through metaphors, symbols, and familiar people/names, GTFW gets the point across to Sam that he is Leaping himself around by not *truly* wanting to go home. Once Sam can accept that he has the power to return home, he will.

Now, let's discuss the major symbols/characters in the "dream".

AB (Al the Bartender) could be likened unto Glenda the Good Witch. As most know, the same actor who portrayed AB in Mirror Image played Weird Ernie in Genesis. Isn't it odd that they would choose to use the same actor in the beginning *and* the end... Also note that there was never anything mentioned in MI about the resemblance between AB and Ernie.

Like Glenda, AB is guiding Sam through the dream by giving him questions that will invoke thoughts of Leaping himself around. He gives vague and metaphorical answers so that by trying to figure them out, Sam finally realizes he can Leap himself home.

The various familiar faces and names are simply there to give Sam a sense of familiarity in a strange Leap... which is a dream all along. Remember in WOO that the Tinman, Scarecrow, and Lion all looked like people Dorothy knew and cared about.

If you'll notice, most of the names themselves were connected with Sam's life pre-QL, while their looks were that of people from various Leaps.

Al the Bartender: Name is Al, looks like Weird Ernie
Ziggy the Miner: Name is Ziggy, looks like Moe Stein
Stawpah (sp?): Well, doesn't look like anyone Sam knows, but he was Al's uncle and is a Leaper
Gooshie: Another exception. Name is Gooshie and has the same bad breath... He, likewise, is another Leaper
Tonchi: Okay, no familiar name, but he looks like Frankie La Motta
Pete: No fam. name, but looks like Jimmy La Motta
The two boys out front: no names at all, but look like the sons of the guy he Leaped into in "Tale of Two Sweeties"

These were the main characters in Sam's "dream".

Now, let's explain the scenes with Al (Al Calavicci). This is where it gets tricky. All the scenes with Al up to the time he locks onto Sam really happened, meaning, they weren't a part of the dream. When Al locks onto Sam, that's where it splits.

The real Al continues to search for Sam unsuccessfully. The scene showing him lock onto Sam is a part of the dream. So, as Sam talks to Al, and Al is telling him he'll get his friend out of there, this is all a part of the dream... It can be paralleled with the scene from WOO when Dorothy looks into the crystal ball and sees Auntie Em crying for her... The part of the dream when Al tells Sam that he'll get him out of there is simply a reassurance to Sam that Al *is* trying to find him and *is* worrying about him.

When Sam converses with AB outside "Al's Place" and tells AB that he wants to go home, but can't because he has "a right to put wrong for Al", this scene can compare to Dorothy's friends getting their wishes.... Sam knows he must save Al's marriage and will.

This is the moment that he realizes that he *can* choose to Leap home, but instead, he chooses not to so he can save Al and Beth's marriage. GTFW is satisfied that Sam knows what he needs to now and realizes what good he has done (parallel to Dorothy's realizations that she really *is* cared for and *has* done good for her family and friends), and so this entity ends the dream and Leaps Sam into Beth's house.

This is where I must tell you to forget the ending you normally see. The *real* ending to this episode does not end with Al's picture "leaping" into a black screen. It is also, for right now, not the end that shows Al Leaping into "Al's Place" and ending up Leaping into the future.

The real ending is as seen in a short video available on the 'Net:

When Sam tells Beth that Al is alive, we *do not* see Sam Leap. Instead, we zoom onto the picture of a young Al. This picture *seemingly* Leaps, but instead changes--using the Leap effect--into a picture of Al, Beth, and their four daughters.

This means that once a movie is made, it should show Sam receiving from GTFW the insight needed in order to Leap himself home. Much like Dorothy. She has had the power to go home from the beginning of the dream... but doesn't realize it until Glenda tells her that it is the ruby slippers. Dorothy was never allowed to know until now because she had lessons to learn and lives to change (the Tinman, Lion, and Scarecrow) first.

For Sam this is also true. His power has been with him since his first Leap, but he wasn't allowed to know because he had lessons to learn and lives to change (people in his Leaps) first. By Mirror Image, GTFW has decided that Sam is ready to know that he has the power. Sam eventually accepts this, but decides, instead, to use it to help AC instead of himself. In this selfless act, Sam has proven his worth. He should now be rewarded instantly by being Leaped home out of Beth's house.

So, this is my take on "Mirror Image". Your mileage may vary, just *my* two-cents, and all those other disclaimers...

Please post comments and add ideas and ask any questions you have!

Keep the Leap, Leapers of the world!!!

Joy C.

Oooh goody, just my cup of tea!

Date: 03/28/2001
From: Vanished88

PERFECT Tina, juuussttt perfect.

That's all I can say except: Type up that episode into a screenplay, quick, and send it off to Universal so they can start FILMING NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

very deep points....

Date: 03/29/2001
From: QuantumLeapLover

You've got some great ideas. I really like the insights and parallels to WOO that you've brought out. Your version explains some things that I hadn't even thought about! I'm going to print this one out and add it to my QL file. Thanks! QLL

Great anology!

Date: 03/29/2001
From: QuantumLeapAddict

I really liked your ideas and anologies. They make me feel better about the last eppy. I wish that I could have seen MI last tues., but I, too, thought it would be on again at 11 (central). Oh well, my friend gave me the tapes yesterday, so I can watch it. Most likely I will cry my heart out. Ok. Back on the subj. The reasonings you had were very good and very precise. The variations between WOO and MI were very . . . very . . . persuading. Well, they sure were to me. Oh, and thanks for all the info on your reply to my "To those of you . . ." post. As soon as I posted that post, I looked back on my first one, and there was another reply. As it turns out, it was yours. So we must have been online at the same time. Cool, huh? Sorry 'bout that. C ya on the bboard!

Leap on!!!
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