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Old 08-30-2013, 10:01 PM   #42
Lightning McQueenie
Junior Leaper
 
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Join Date: Dec 2005
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Originally Posted by iMonrey View Post
Basically, this episode just left me baffled. I don't really have a problem with the ending revelation that Sam never returned home, which is what I think most fans objected to. I just don't really understand what DPB was trying to say here - regardless of whether this was intended to be a season finale or not.

I initially came away thinking it meant Sam was dead, and had been dead all along and made into some sort of guardian angel, but DPB has said in interviews Sam is not dead. So, I don't understand exactly what was going on here, or what it means that Sam saw all these people from previous leaps with different names and lives. Were they all leapers too? The Bar seems to be some kind of limbo or weigh station for leapers, and at the same time, an actual place where some miners were trapped and needed rescuing. We see one guy leap out but isn't replaced with someone else. The bartender tells Sam he is responsible for the leaping himself, Sam can't quite accept it, and then at the end wills himself to leap back to Beth at the precise moment he left her in MIA.

Throughout the series there is an unabashed suggestion the God Himself is leaping Sam around, which I have no problem with. But this episode seemed to go a little too far into religious allegory for my tastes, which is probably why I can't make head nor tail out of it.
The entire leap takes place in Sam's head. That's why nearly everyone he meets resembles someone he met in a previous leap and why nothing makes any sense. The purpose was to make Sam come to terms with the fact that he subconsciously built Project Quantum Leap with the intention of making the world a better place, to accept that this is his calling. So literally, even though he doesn't control where he goes or who he has to save, he IS leaping himself around by his choice to want to do good in the world. As for Al (hologram) being able to find Sam, well their brainwaves are linked, so it makes sense that he might be able to tap into the leap inside Sam's head, and that was crucial, as it made Sam realise that he couldn't go home while he still had a wrong to put right for Al, and from there came to the conclusion that there was always another wrong to be put right, so he just kept putting off going home.

Finally, since you mentioned God, I don't believe that Al (Bartender) actually is God, I think he's more a manifestation of part of Sam's own psyche. The Sam who leaps into the bar is Sam's Id, the one who just wants to go home. Al the Bartender is Sam's ego, making him realise that he has a job to do. Al the hologram could be thought of as Sam's superego, the one who provides the right path for Sam to take.
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