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View Poll Results: The Americanization of Machiko
Excellent 14 42.42%
Good 13 39.39%
Average 4 12.12%
Fair 2 6.06%
Poor 0 0%
Voters: 33. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-27-2013, 12:04 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by markg View Post
Is this the only episode that accidentally went outside Sam's lifetime?
This is actually questionable. Sam was in the womb at the time of this leap, something according to my behind the scenes book that actually happens a few more times. It could be several errors in choosing leap dates or QL could be pro life, considering existence in the womb to count as part of one's lifetime.

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Originally Posted by Lightning McQueenie View Post
No, just off the top of my head, Sam leaps out of his lifetime in "The Leap Back", which is the first episode of season 4, and "Leap Between the States", which is the third-last episode of the entire series. I have a feeling there may be more...
If you recall in The Leap Back Sam and Al had switched positions, the leap in this episode was Al's who was born in 1934, easily Sam's sr. by an entire generation. So the leap was well within the lifetime of the leaper it was given to.
The Leap Between the States was possible because while it was well outside Sam's lifetime it had remained in the Beckett timeline, recall his host was his own great grandfather, Captain John Beckett. Sam's father was his namesake.

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Originally Posted by Donofrio_QLTD View Post

By the way, this Al line: "You didn't do the first time." (about Sam fainting at the altar, I believe), and then fixing it with "uhmm, no, I was just kidding", or something like that when Sam asks him if he was married, always bugs me. I firmly believe that Al screwed up at that time and then, when he remembered that he was not supposed to say anything, he just went and fixed it and was saved by the fact that Sam never wanted to ask more questions about it. If that was really the case, then it's very interesting how, at this early stage, they were actually thinking about reuiniting him with Donna at some point.
Are you meaning that it bugged you that Sam didn't prod the subject after Al had dodged it somewhat strangely? Perhaps, but Sam was a bit busy to have gotten into an argument with Al. Not to mention nerves can effect one's focus. So it's possible he honestly hadn't noticed.

***

I myself enjoy this episode. Not only do we get a unique story here but we also learn something new about Sam, this is where we learn that he knows Japanese among his seven languages (and 4 dead ones). Took two semesters of it myself, it's not an easy language to learn though I had gotten pretty versatile with it. The Hirigama and Katikana characters are even more difficult, never got the hang of them but I digress.

Even with her name alone, Lenore somehow gives me that 'Nevermore' feeling from Edgar Allen Poe's The Raven with the loss of her daughter having made turned her heart so cold.

Machiko is a sweet, delightful character and being the hopeless romantic I am, Sam's interactions with her (as with several other of the girls he became involved with in leaps) melt me.

My best friend and I once watched a panel interview with the woman who played Machiko and it's surprising how her English is actually perfect. Her performance as a stranger to America was brilliant.
Fun fact (also from the interview): Her husband was not happy about the shirtless scene.
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Old 08-27-2013, 03:20 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Sam Beckett Fan View Post
Are you meaning that it bugged you that Sam didn't prod the subject after Al had dodged it somewhat strangely? Perhaps, but Sam was a bit busy to have gotten into an argument with Al. Not to mention nerves can effect one's focus. So it's possible he honestly hadn't noticed.
No, what bugged me was the mentioning in itself. I mean, why would Al mess up? I understand that he, being a human being and all, is allowed to do so from time to time... Except that in this case I believe he kind of did it on purpose, with the knowledge that Sam was already at the end of his leap and, even if Sam threw a fit or something, he was going to dodge the bullet anyway hiding behind the swiss-cheese effect, so he only used the "eah, I'm just kidding" tone to ease it up a bit and so Sam wouldn't even consider it as something that serious.

The interesting thing about all this, and the real reason why it bugs me, but in a good way, is something I've been questioning all along: Did Charlie Coffey, with his screenplay, inspired this story arc (I mean the reunion with Donna in "The Leap Back")? Or did this story arc already existed, even if the idea of him being married to Donna was still almost 2 entire seasons away? I'd like to think that the story arc already existed and Charlie just gave some kind of further light (probably even following Deborah Pratt's "Star-Crossed"), but I'm really not so sure.

Anyway, I thought it was fascinating, hehe!!
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Old 08-27-2013, 03:20 PM   #28
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Ah you mean had that moment been written with the premeditated intention of confirming the success of Star Crossed by reuniting him with Donna in The Leap Back? That is an excellent thought that begs the question of how far in advanced each storyline was considered.

Sadly however I have read that Deborah Pratt had after regretted the arc premeditated or not, that she had preferred to see Sam in an in-leap relationship (hence Abigail) and thus had in her mind deleted Donna. My heart sinks at this thought, I adore Donna and happen to absolutely despise Abigail.

On a note that gets us back on topic, one thing I forgot to mention in my previous post regarding this episode is how I adore how Sam mentally exclaims to the reflection in the window "Oh my God, I'm Popeye!" XD
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Old 08-28-2013, 04:53 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by Sam Beckett Fan View Post
Ah you mean had that moment been written with the premeditated intention of confirming the success of Star Crossed by reuniting him with Donna in The Leap Back? That is an excellent thought that begs the question of how far in advanced each storyline was considered.

Sadly however I have read that Deborah Pratt had after regretted the arc premeditated or not, that she had preferred to see Sam in an in-leap relationship (hence Abigail) and thus had in her mind deleted Donna. My heart sinks at this thought, I adore Donna and happen to absolutely despise Abigail.

On a note that gets us back on topic, one thing I forgot to mention in my previous post regarding this episode is how I adore how Sam mentally exclaims to the reflection in the window "Oh my God, I'm Popeye!" XD
Hahaha! That was hilarious.

I'm kinda shocked about what Deborah said because, well, I happen to... hmm, NOT LIKE Abigail, either. Donna actually had dimension, hehe! I hope Deborah doesn't hate me for this...
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Old 07-24-2014, 10:58 PM   #30
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After watching this episode now I'm getting the urge to write a full review even though I've already mentioned some highlighting moments.

An in depth acceptance story rich with culture which brought out Sam's belief of equality among man. The way he embraced Machiko was both adorable and playful. The chemistry between that actress and Scott was very believable. What I loved the most however was when his voice over told us while she was picking flowers that he while he wanted her to be accepted preferably it would be without having to change her. An excellent response to the fact that they were on their way buy her an American dress.

The Lenore character makes me think of Edgar Allan's Poem The Raven and not just because of the name itself.

vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow – sorrow for the lost Lenore –
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore –
Nameless here for evermore.


The family had lost a daughter, a suggestively pregnant teen to suicide who'd apparently been frowned at for her choice(s).
Nameless here for evermore.
In a way Machiko could be seen as the raven.

"Wretch," I cried, "thy God hath lent thee – by these angels he hath sent thee
Respite – respite and nepenthe, from thy memories of Lenore;
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this lost Lenore!"


'Nepenthe' is apparently a mythological drug said cause one to forget their grief. The speaker in the poem seems to believe the raven which appeared at his door is a messenger sent to deliver this drug to him and clearly takes it as an insult.

In this case Lenore feels Machiko is a curse come to claim her remaining child and that she was being asked to replace her daughter.

Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!"
Quoth the Raven "Nevermore."


Or one can see Sam as the raven.

There is mythology which says that "when someone dies, a crow (which are the cousin of the raven) carries their soul to the land of the dead. But sometimes something so bad happens that a terrible sadness is carried with it and the soul can’t rest. Then sometimes, just sometimes, the crow can bring that soul back to put the wrong things right."

The soul being a lost child and Lenore representing the great saddness which her daughter's death left behind and Machiko's appearance then brought and aggravated.
Machiko fits as well as being another daughter Lenore was being forced to welcome into her life.
That end scene where Sam pleaded with her to show Machkio support in the hospital could be seen as Machiko or Sam presenting Lenore with a way to make up for where she'd failed her daughter.

Recently I watched an awesome film with my friends using this concept of the crow and it got me thinking of a way to use it for a Quantum Leap fanfiction.

In Japan which is even more ironic to this episode there is lore of a three legged crow, otherwise known as Yatagarasu which aided an emperor. It's appearance is believed to be a will of heaven or a divine intervention in human affairs.

Moving on, there was an interesting concept here when we as in several episodes receive a hint that Lenore can detect Sam within the aura. She tells her husband that he's different beyond his service over seas, that there was something different in his eyes. She immediately places the blame on Machicko for obvious reasons but you can tell from her tone that she on some level knows her son is not there.
This is an intriguing concept, a few other episodes in which we see something like this are:
Season 2's Catch a Falling Star, John O'Malley seemed to have gotten a glimpse of Sam right before allowing 'Ray' his big debut. (though Drunkenness is the obviously source there)
Season 2's Freedom: The Leapee's grandfather constantly speaks seemingly more to Sam than his grandson (The handprints on the horse and the conversation about "leaping" from one skin to the next).
Season 2's Leaping In Without a Net: A carnival psychic is able to see in his eyes what she refers to as his reincarnated identities.
Season 4's Hurricane: The Leapee's girlfriend states at one point that she thought his eyes were a different color for a brief moment.
Just to name a few.
What could the key be? In some cases such as here it a certain closeness to the leapee seems to be able to scratch just below the surface of the aura but as in Leaping In Without a Net and other instances like Temptation Eyes A divine insight is also a factor.

Lets look at the Naomi character, lord is this woman irritating, probably the most shallow, clingy and self absorbed character or at least female character ever presented in the series. Al makes a comment in the beginning that she'd fit in perfectly in Vegas and I believe he hit the nail on the head. She's exactly the vegas stripper type. Granted she had a close history with Charlie so sure it would sting, she was completely disrespectful and what she did to Machiko was the flit of the butterflies wings which started the typhoon of events which followed it. I can't believe the b**** got away with it too!

It's elements like the fact that Charlie had originally given up on Machiko and ended up with Naomi that suggests to me that he may have been a pushover and a bit of a mama's boy.

Though I've discussed it before I want to take another look at the ending moment when Al makes a comment suggesting to the viewer for the first time that Sam is married. What exactly happened there is unclear but I once had a conversation here with someone who thought it might have been intentional. I've been thinking about that I am starting to support it as head canon. It's possible that Al might have wanted to test Sam's reaction without:
a.) Directly breaking his promise to Donna
b.) Adding in the element of anger in Sam for not telling him sooner that a direct approach would have gotten.
this way it was more natural.
So why would he then back off so quickly? Well perhaps the expression and tone that had been delivered with Sam's comeback line was enough for him and/or he didn't feel right about this little test.
Though granted Al is human so of course he could have just had a slip as is the initial suggestion it makes. If he'd really wanted to purposefully throw Donna into a conversation the perfect moment would have been when Sam was telling Al that he couldn't tell Beth to wait for him, one reason being that it broke the Quantum Leap rules. Honestly I would have liked to see that conversation take that direction, Al was amazing not to even scratch the surface there but I digress.

There was also mention in the discussion I had with the other user to if this was written with the premeditation of The Leap Back. The 'Just kidding' part paired with the expression Al gets right after making that recovery does support this as it directly connects to the reveal that Donna had asked Al not to remind Sam of her. So it is possible even though TLB was regretted after it aired.

Another interesting element here is that a language gets added to the list if several languages Sam is supposed to know.

From this episode we find out that he knows Japanese. The others?
Season 1: Star Crossed and Season 5: The Curse of Phta-Hotep - Hieroglyphics
Season 2: Goodnight Dear Heart - German
Season 2: Sea Bride - French
Season 2: All Americans and Season 4: It's a Wonderful Leap- Spanish
Unfortunately this isn't all 7 languages and 4 dead ones. Shame not all were revealed.
But we do know from three particular episodes that Sign Language, Hebrew and Italian are not among them haha. He definitely should have learned Italian! XD

He also speaks fluent Russian in LHO but since Oswald was in heavy control a lot of the time it's unclear if that was actually Sam's knowledge.

5/5 stars, a brilliant episode.

'The Raven' by Edgar Allen Poe source:
http://www.shmoop.com/the-raven/poem-text.html

Ravens and Crows in Mythology:
http://www.perspectivesmagazine.sk/n...-and-religion/

Yatagarasu - the three legged raven:
http://www.avesnoir.com/yata-garasu-...japanese-myth/
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Old 07-25-2014, 12:50 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Sam Beckett Fan View Post
This is actually questionable. Sam was in the womb at the time of this leap, something according to my behind the scenes book that actually happens a few more times. It could be several errors in choosing leap dates or QL could be pro life, considering existence in the womb to count as part of one's lifetime.
Actually (and I'm not sure if this was intentional or coincidence) with the exception of The Leap Back and The Leap Between the States - for which we are given other specific reasons why Sam leaped outside of his own lifetime - none of the leaps that took place before Sam's actual date of birth took place earlier than April 1953. Which is when he would have inarguably (and legally) been considered viable - so, yes, part of his lifetime.
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Old 07-25-2014, 03:10 PM   #32
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Actually (and I'm not sure if this was intentional or coincidence) with the exception of The Leap Back and The Leap Between the States - for which we are given other specific reasons why Sam leaped outside of his own lifetime - none of the leaps that took place before Sam's actual date of birth took place earlier than April 1953. Which is when he would have inarguably (and legally) been considered viable - so, yes, part of his lifetime.
This is an excellent catch.
By April 1953 Thelma Beckett was five months pregnant with Sam. By then the baby has nearly reached fully human form but furthermore since the around the third month has:
1.) Been able to move in the womb
2.) Been able to hear sounds surrounding the mother
3.) Has had a heartbeat!
Even those who don't believe it's a life at the point of conception can't argue anymore at five months!

So Sam was most certainly alive in April 1953 regardless of the plausibility that they didn't know all this then.
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Old 10-14-2017, 01:33 AM   #33
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Tough episode to watch, with the way Lenore, Naomi, and Rusty behaved to Machiko. I loved Henry, though. He accepted her right off, and tried to get the others to do so, as well. I liked how Al was very active in this episode. You can really see his character start to come to life at this point in the series. Funny though how at the wedding, he had to count on his fingers how many times he had been married. I found it odd how quickly Lenore came around though, even wearing the kimono Machiko gave her. Maybe there was a good bit of time between the hospital scene and the wedding.

Well written, well acted. An Excellent episode.
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Old 10-15-2017, 09:08 AM   #34
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Tough episode to watch, with the way Lenore, Naomi, and Rusty behaved to Machiko. I loved Henry, though. He accepted her right off, and tried to get the others to do so, as well. I liked how Al was very active in this episode. You can really see his character start to come to life at this point in the series. Funny though how at the wedding, he had to count on his fingers how many times he had been married. I found it odd how quickly Lenore came around though, even wearing the kimono Machiko gave her. Maybe there was a good bit of time between the hospital scene and the wedding.

Well written, well acted. An Excellent episode.
I also thought a lot of time would have had to have passed after the hospital scene. I mean, Machiko was fully healed in the wedding, so it must have taken some time...
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Old 08-18-2018, 02:54 AM   #35
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I found it odd how quickly Lenore came around though, even wearing the kimono Machiko gave her. Maybe there was a good bit of time between the hospital scene and the wedding.
This has come across to me as an oddity as well.
As far as I'm concerned, the connection between the hospital scene and her entrance to the wedding wasn't clear. What I mean is, what exactly clicked for her?

Good catch that a fair amount of time had to have passed between the hospital and the wedding since Machiko's injury was life-threatening and she's fully recovered at the wedding.
That, however, doesn't add up with the average time Sam spends in a leap which is about 2-3 days.
The longest amount of time he spent consecutively in one leap on screen is the two weeks in Temptation Eyes (LHO is arguable because that's a series of several leaps each of which was no longer than 24 hours) but as Ziggy would no doubt say, when dealing with quanta anything is possible.
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