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Old 10-14-2013, 03:26 PM   #101
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Originally Posted by blue enigma
And this is also why I think we don't have to necessarily accept that Sam never returned home. The way things stood at the exact end of the leap to Beth, Sam never returned home, just as at the end of 'The Leap Home' Sam made the winning basket but Tom still died -- until the next leap. So after he left Beth? The last screen can be looked like any other end of a leap.
Agreed I refuse to accept that Sam never returned home. He wouldn't do that to his family and staff who have given their lives to finding a way for his safe return. I like this viewpoint of the concept that Sam never returning home is simply one changeable result. Al the Bartender made that clear to him, that his returning home contrary to the assumption the project had been working with is in fact a choice. Hence why I keep thinking that he should be doing so in between leaps and doing hand offs with Al. This way he still gets to be involved with his family and Donna.
I often find myself thinking of his poor mother whom by 1999 (just since it's the one present year we know) is probably at that point where it's a blessing to wake up each morning and her second son has seemingly barely been in contact with her for years if you want to work with the Mirror's Edge concept that pre-leap Sam was a workaholic. In this way his saving Tom may have extended Thelma's life to have one more child still in it and more grandchildren.
Though I am not a Sammy Jo fan I would like to think that she should at least be revealed to Thelma so that she could have the satisfaction of a grandchild from Sam. Since there is every chance in the world that she wouldn't live to see his return home.
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Old 11-14-2013, 09:54 AM   #102
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After having relived Season 1 alongside the Quantum Leap podcast, something struck me. Many of the leaps in Season 1 had "mini missions" that needed to be completed alongside the main mission in order for Sam to leap. Such examples include helping Buddy Holly write the lyrics to Peggy Sue, as Don Gino picking the right Bingo number, and changing Miss Melanie's beliefs and thus her influence helping to integrate the Southern town. Could it be that GFTW wouldn't let Sam leap until these mini-missions were completed so that Sam would learn to not completely rely on Ziggy and trust his own instincts (which are nearly always right)?
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Old 11-14-2013, 10:57 AM   #103
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Also, can I say I had a great time re-reading this thread from start to finish, I loved the discussions.

On the subject of what is able to be remembered from the changing timelines, I believe that both Sam and Al do remember what has happened in both timelines, because of their neural link to Ziggy. There is a lot of evidence to suggest this, such as Sam doing his best to remember Al after Al was erased from existence, Al realising the change in committee from Whitesman to Diane McBride, Sam remembering that he'd lost his brother but got him back.

So if he remembers all timelines, why can't he remember Donna? Because his subconscious won't let him! It all comes back to what I suggested right at the beginning of this thread. Since Sam is the one leaping himself around from his desire to make the world a better place, he has subconsciously blocked out anything that could prevent him from completing his missions. This is why he recovers a great deal of his memory, but not this one significant factor.

Another interesting thing to note is that he does not remember Sammy Jo (even though he vows to). Ziggy is 100% correct that Sam won't remember her. How would Ziggy know this? Because SHE IS SAM - or at least, she is partly Sam. He put his heart and soul into her creation, and she even contains part of his brain. Ziggy, being a computer, can't understand human emotion, but she CAN sense it, and so understand's Sam and what he will and won't allow himself to remember to continue and succeed in his missions. The knowledge of having a daughter and a wife waiting for him at home could be enough to send Sam over the edge and give his life's work the flick and decide to go home, so he subconsciously has blocked them out, to prevent them from affecting his decisions.
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Old 11-14-2013, 03:22 PM   #104
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Originally Posted by Lightning McQueenie View Post
On the subject of what is able to be remembered from the changing timelines, I believe that both Sam and Al do remember what has happened in both timelines, because of their neural link to Ziggy. There is a lot of evidence to suggest this, such as Sam doing his best to remember Al after Al was erased from existence, Al realising the change in committee from Whitesman to Diane McBride, Sam remembering that he'd lost his brother but got him back.

So if he remembers all timelines, why can't he remember Donna? Because his subconscious won't let him! It all comes back to what I suggested right at the beginning of this thread. Since Sam is the one leaping himself around from his desire to make the world a better place, he has subconsciously blocked out anything that could prevent him from completing his missions. This is why he recovers a great deal of his memory, but not this one significant factor.

Another interesting thing to note is that he does not remember Sammy Jo (even though he vows to). Ziggy is 100% correct that Sam won't remember her. How would Ziggy know this? Because SHE IS SAM - or at least, she is partly Sam. He put his heart and soul into her creation, and she even contains part of his brain. Ziggy, being a computer, can't understand human emotion, but she CAN sense it, and so understand's Sam and what he will and won't allow himself to remember to continue and succeed in his missions. The knowledge of having a daughter and a wife waiting for him at home could be enough to send Sam over the edge and give his life's work the flick and decide to go home, so he subconsciously has blocked them out, to prevent them from affecting his decisions.
Yep. I agree with all of this.
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Old 11-14-2013, 09:37 PM   #105
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Originally Posted by Lightning McQueenie View Post
After having relived Season 1 alongside the Quantum Leap podcast, something struck me. Many of the leaps in Season 1 had "mini missions" that needed to be completed alongside the main mission in order for Sam to leap. Such examples include helping Buddy Holly write the lyrics to Peggy Sue, as Don Gino picking the right Bingo number, and changing Miss Melanie's beliefs and thus her influence helping to integrate the Southern town. Could it be that GFTW wouldn't let Sam leap until these mini-missions were completed so that Sam would learn to not completely rely on Ziggy and trust his own instincts (which are nearly always right)?
The 'Peggy Sue' lyrics was not as you say a "mini mission". It turned out it was the primary reason for the leap.
What Sam had under assumption been trying to accomplish, getting Tess to marry Doc, was clarified to not have been meant to be. She had been meant to marry a man who had been writing her love letters and the way Sam left the ranch that was still what happened.
This is also clarified in Honeymoon Express:
"You expect us to believe that God leaped Dr. Beckett into 1956 just to help Buddy Holly with the lyrics to 'Peggy Sue'?"

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Originally Posted by Lightning McQueenie
Since Sam is the one leaping himself around from his desire to make the world a better place, he has subconsciously blocked out anything that could prevent him from completing his missions.
Sorry I disagree. Sam's control on the subconscious level (which is what it was before he realized he had the ability of control) was occasional. Example, if his mind had taken control every time why did he sit in the electric chair terrified and panicking in Last Dance... until the millisecond before it was turned on?

I addition when Donna asked Sam if he could act freely knowing he was married he answered "I don't know". So he never really made that decision.

As for Sammy Jo, you argued against yourself in a way. If he controlled what he did and didn't remember, how did he vow to remember Sammy Jo and then not? Why would she even get in the way of his performance?

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Because SHE IS SAM - or at least, she is partly Sam. He put his heart and soul into her creation, and she even contains part of his brain.
That is not canon, but rather a concept used by the novels which are simply legally published fanfictions. The show does not discuss this.
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Old 11-15-2013, 02:09 AM   #106
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I addition when Donna asked Sam if he could act freely knowing he was married he answered "I don't know". So he never really made that decision.
Well, he never consciously made that decision. People do things and aren't always aware why, and I think Lightning McQueenie is suggesting that Sam subconsciously made the decision (if I'm understanding the comment right) and subconsciously blocked her out because it would interfere with his mission. But he's not necessarily aware that he did that or why. It's a plausible theory.

Why Sam waited until the last possible moment to leap in Last Dance Before an Execution is a little more complicated to explain. Part of what becomes clear in Mirror Image is that Sam is leaping Sam (at least according to the bartender), but Sam doesn't yet believe it. So there might be some of that going on in Last Dance. Or there may be a darker aspect to it -- maybe Sam in those last minutes in the electric chair believes that death is the only way to get off the crazy ride he's on, then at the very last moment changes his mind. There's one point where he says something to Al and I'm not sure if it's "I want to go home, Al" or "It's time to go home, Al."
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Old 11-15-2013, 02:41 AM   #107
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The 'Peggy Sue' lyrics was not as you say a "mini mission". It turned out it was the primary reason for the leap.
What Sam had under assumption been trying to accomplish, getting Tess to marry Doc, was clarified to not have been meant to be. She had been meant to marry a man who had been writing her love letters and the way Sam left the ranch that was still what happened.
There is no evidence to suggest that Sam's main mission wasn't to get Tess to marry the man who was writing her the love letters. And besides, Buddy Holly must have been able to write the lyrics without Sam's intervention, how else would Sam have known them to begin with? Unless of course we're expected to believe something similar to LHO where in the original timeline, the song "Peggy Sue" didn't exist and only did because Sam helped Buddy Holly with the lyrics. I seriously doubt this though, because both Sam and Al recognised the tune when Buddy was playing it.

Quote:
This is also clarified in Honeymoon Express:
"You expect us to believe that God leaped Dr. Beckett into 1956 just to help Buddy Holly with the lyrics to 'Peggy Sue'?"
This I believe is a misunderstanding on Al's part, since Sam leapt immediately after helping him, perhaps Al took this to mean that it was Sam's mission. But like I said, it can't possibly have been because the song already existed.

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Sorry I disagree. Sam's control on the subconscious level (which is what it was before he realized he had the ability of control) was occasional. Example, if his mind had taken control every time why did he sit in the electric chair terrified and panicking in Last Dance... until the millisecond before it was turned on?
Maybe because he didn't KNOW he actually did have that level of control, and was doing everything he could to try to prevent himself from dying. Are you seriously going to tell me that you aren't going to panic if you were being put in the electric chair? You never know what you're capable of until you're put into a situation where you have to utilise your capabilities. And even then, Sam never believed he did it himself, as in Mirror Image he still believed GFTW was leaping him around. He just believed that GFTW leaped him at the last second.

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I addition when Donna asked Sam if he could act freely knowing he was married he answered "I don't know". So he never really made that decision.
He couldn't even remember the things he'd done in the leaps, how could he answer that question?

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As for Sammy Jo, you argued against yourself in a way. If he controlled what he did and didn't remember, how did he vow to remember Sammy Jo and then not? Why would she even get in the way of his performance?
There is a difference between the conscious and subconscious. He wouldn't want to abandon his daughter, but deep down he knew he had to.

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That is not canon, but rather a concept used by the novels which are simply legally published fanfictions. The show does not discuss this.
We know that Sam and Al have their neurons and mesons linked, which is through Ziggy. So Ziggy must contain part of his brain, or at least, have full access to it.
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Old 11-16-2013, 06:16 PM   #108
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Well, he never consciously made that decision. People do things and aren't always aware why, and I think Lightning McQueenie is suggesting that Sam subconsciously made the decision (if I'm understanding the comment right) and subconsciously blocked her out because it would interfere with his mission. But he's not necessarily aware that he did that or why. It's a plausible theory.

Why Sam waited until the last possible moment to leap in Last Dance Before an Execution is a little more complicated to explain. Part of what becomes clear in Mirror Image is that Sam is leaping Sam (at least according to the bartender), but Sam doesn't yet believe it. So there might be some of that going on in Last Dance. Or there may be a darker aspect to it -- maybe Sam in those last minutes in the electric chair believes that death is the only way to get off the crazy ride he's on, then at the very last moment changes his mind. There's one point where he says something to Al and I'm not sure if it's "I want to go home, Al" or "It's time to go home, Al."
The entire issue always was Sam's denial. If Sam indeed always controlled his own leaps, he never believed it. Perhaps Al and Ziggy are to blame a little bit for this as well, as they were not aware of this either and always egged on the concept that GFTW was leaping Sam.

In "Last Dance Before An Execution," what we may be seeing is a panicked Sam who is unaware of his own power, so to speak. Out of desperation/fear/adrenaline, Sam possibly leapt himself out.

On the other hand, if we're subscribing to the theory that Sam controls his own leaps, it is definitely apparent that the situations he leaps into are what is out of his control. For example, why would GFTW leap Sam in just before he is about to receive electric shock therapy in "Shock Theater"? Or the many other countless situations in which Sam's life would have been in danger or being humiliated by not knowing what was going on during the leap-in.
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Old 11-16-2013, 09:48 PM   #109
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Originally Posted by Lightning McQueenie
He couldn't even remember the things he'd done in the leaps, how could he answer that question?
Exactly, you basically restated my point there. He couldn't have answered that concern because he never had to try act with knowledge that he's married.

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Are you seriously going to tell me that you aren't going to panic if you were being put in the electric chair?
You seem to have missed my point the fact that Sam panicked was not the significant factor of that moment, it was why he took until the last second to leap out rather than right after Al declared him successful. His panicking only reinforces the senseless logic that he would choose even subconsciously to linger. But perhaps a force, like God, that some believe dictates fate on a partial level wanted Jesus Ortega to leap back in the moment of his death.

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Originally Posted by QLNut
Perhaps Al and Ziggy are to blame a little bit for this as well, as they were not aware of this either and always egged on the concept that GFTW was leaping Sam.
Which brings me here. To assume that the revelation of Mirror Image cancels out GTFW is a bit rash. Without an awareness of capability of control he only had a limited level of it, that is what I keep pushing. As Chris said, he never believed it. When his subconscious wasn't triggered something else had to be doing the steering.

How else could he end up in leaps he doesn't want to be in? While those which seem to relate to him (Ex. Camakazi Kid and Future Boy) he not only never questions but even feels a personal determination for them.
When he finally did take a conscious control, he had to have taken it from something else right?

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Originally Posted by QLNut
For example, why would GFTW leap Sam in just before he is about to receive electric shock therapy in "Shock Theater"?
Actually the better question is why would Sam himself choose to leap into that moment?

This leads me to want to ask both with and without awareness what is his level of control? Even if his subconscious selects a leap, does it always decide at what moment to arrive and/or who the leapee is? Would he really have chosen on any level to have leaped into females?
Is he even able to do so when he is aware of when he's choosing?
Could Sam have chosen instead to leap into that parking lot where Beth had the flat tire and beat Dirk to assisting her and thus ever meeting her in the first place (before then telling her that Al is alive)?
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Old 11-16-2013, 11:45 PM   #110
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The entire issue always was Sam's denial. If Sam indeed always controlled his own leaps, he never believed it. Perhaps Al and Ziggy are to blame a little bit for this as well, as they were not aware of this either and always egged on the concept that GFTW was leaping Sam.
Sam was absolutely in denial and still was through most of 'Mirror Image', until he leaped to Beth. Now it's possible that even then he didn't accept that he was in control. But I always interpreted that this was the moment that he understood and accepted that he had at least some semblance of control. I still feel that even though Sam was in denial about it, it didn't mean he wasn't subconsciously in control.

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In "Last Dance Before An Execution," what we may be seeing is a panicked Sam who is unaware of his own power, so to speak. Out of desperation/fear/adrenaline, Sam possibly leapt himself out.
Absolutely, and a much simpler explanation than I had come up with, lol.

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On the other hand, if we're subscribing to the theory that Sam controls his own leaps, it is definitely apparent that the situations he leaps into are what is out of his control. For example, why would GFTW leap Sam in just before he is about to receive electric shock therapy in "Shock Theater"? Or the many other countless situations in which Sam's life would have been in danger or being humiliated by not knowing what was going on during the leap-in.
This is an interesting point and I would again offer the suggestion that I made elsewhere that Sam just wasn't as good at leaping when he first started out. In any job or profession there's a learning curve. Why wouldn't that be the case with quantum leaping? In later seasons not only did Sam seem more immersed in the leaps and more involved with the people, he also figured a lot of things out on his own before Al and Ziggy provided the information. He was already getting better and growing more independent. So, along the same lines, maybe Sam's aim on the leap-ins just wasn't very good when he started out and he got better at targeting his leap-ins the longer he was doing it.

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Which brings me here. To assume that the revelation of Mirror Image cancels out GTFW is a bit rash. Without an awareness of capability of control he only had a limited level of it, that is what I keep pushing. As Chris said, he never believed it. When his subconscious wasn't triggered something else had to be doing the steering.
I don't think this is necessarily so. Sam could still be subconsciously controlling his own leaping even though he's in denial. He does it through his own belief that GTFW is in control, using that as impetus to push himself on but it's really him doing it. lol, I don't know if I'm articulating that well. In other words, Sam is doing it but he's telling himself that it's GTFW that's doing it and he has nothing to do with it. The bad situations he leaps into -- besides the real-life answer that the writers were going for a laugh or suspense or whatever -- are his lack of skill at aiming.
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Old 11-17-2013, 02:23 AM   #111
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Lack of skill of aiming...oh I like that. Clever.
How about leaps out though such as Last Dance...?
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Old 11-17-2013, 02:24 AM   #112
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Lack of skill of aiming...oh I like that. Clever.
How about leaps out though such as Last Dance...?
If I remember correctly, Sam's mission wasn't finished until that last second though. Wasn't it when he was strapped in the chair when Al told him he had to give the confession?
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Old 11-17-2013, 02:25 AM   #113
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Correct Lightning McQueenie but why would he not leap the moment he gave the confession and Al declared him successful? It took him several terrifying seconds after that for him to leap out.
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Old 11-17-2013, 02:30 AM   #114
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How about leaps out though such as Last Dance...?
Fear, as Lightning McQueenie and QL Nut both suggested, which paralyzed him temporarily. I had also suggested a darker interpretation earlier in the thread, that for a brief moment -- that passed before it was too late -- Sam was tempted to end his leaping with his own death.

Or, Sam may in some moments be sabotaging himself with his own denial of his control over his situation. That probably sounds weirdly contradictory, lol.

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If I remember correctly, Sam's mission wasn't finished until that last second though. Wasn't it when he was strapped in the chair when Al told him he had to give the confession?
I think even after the confession Sam doesn't leap right out. There's a delay.
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Old 11-17-2013, 03:00 AM   #115
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Reading some of the newer conversations in the MIA thread, something struck me regarding "the rules". I believe that over time, Sam realised that he really had a free reign to do whatever he liked as long as the Project was not involved. This is why he feels he is able to act selfishly (e.g. trying to save or improve the lives of his own family) while he would refuse to help Al. He knows that if he used his situation to improve the lives of anyone at the project, they would have cause to fire that person or even shut down the project entirely. It is hypocritical, but really, the only times that he could act freely are when he is doing something to help himself from his own knowledge...
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Old 11-17-2013, 03:02 AM   #116
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Fear, as Lightning McQueenie and QL Nut both suggested, which paralyzed him temporarily.
Makes sense.

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I had also suggested a darker interpretation earlier in the thread, that for a brief moment -- that passed before it was too late -- Sam was tempted to end his leaping with his own death.
Honestly I missed when you mentioned this before. Gosh that's scary, I don't believe Sam suicidal. He enjoys helping others which is what Mirror Image portrays as it suggests he chose to continue that over returning home.
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Old 11-17-2013, 03:09 AM   #117
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Reading some of the newer conversations in the MIA thread, something struck me regarding "the rules". I believe that over time, Sam realised that he really had a free reign to do whatever he liked as long as the Project was not involved. This is why he feels he is able to act selfishly (e.g. trying to save or improve the lives of his own family) while he would refuse to help Al. He knows that if he used his situation to improve the lives of anyone at the project, they would have cause to fire that person or even shut down the project entirely. It is hypocritical, but really, the only times that he could act freely are when he is doing something to help himself from his own knowledge...
I thought Sam was the one who made up the rules though. He even says in 'Star-Crossed' something along the lines of "well, since I'm the one who invented this I made the rules so I can change it and say it's no longer a rule". It's been a while so I don't remember the exact wording, but I believe it's when Sam and Al are outside the Rathskellar before Sam goes in to talk to Donna. Also, Al did get fired for helping Sam help himself in that leap. That was partly about Al giving Sam personal information, but I don't think the committee thought it was okay for Sam to be changing things for himself either.

Of course Sam eventually does help Al and I doubt Al got fired for it. Though it's possible that Al just wasn't there anymore because of the change in his history. I know DPB said they still met, etc. But it's still a possible outcome of Sam's leap to Beth.

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Honestly I missed when you mentioned this before. Gosh that's scary, I don't believe Sam suicidal. He enjoys helping others which is what Mirror Image portrays as it suggests he chose to continue that over returning home.
I agree. It's a much darker interpretation and I don't really believe that Sam is suicidal either. It's just one theory I threw out there and I think of it more as a moment of weakness after what has been an extremely harrowing, gut-wrenching leap, where he considers it for the briefest spark of a moment and immediately snaps out of it.
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Old 11-17-2013, 03:30 AM   #118
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Blue Enigma is right. Sam made the rule that stated no personal involvement including his own. Star Crossed directly covers this.
"Sam you are breaking your own inside trader rule."
"What?"
"Rule numero uno: the time travler shall not use his position to improve or alter his own life."
"I made up that rule?"
"Yes. And you swore everyone to a blood oath of alliance to it on a penalty of death."

(Totally love that last line, LOL Al! XD)
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Old 11-17-2013, 03:35 AM   #119
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Blue Enigma is right. Sam made the rule that stated no personal involvement including his own. Star Crossed directly covers this.
"Sam you are breaking your own inside trader rule."
"What?"
"Rule numero uno: the time travler shall not use his position to improve or alter his own life."
"I made up that rule?"
"Yes. And you swore everyone to a blood oath of alliance to it on a penalty of death."

(Totally love that last line, LOL Al! XD)
Yes that is true, and Al also refuses to give him information in A Tale of Two Sweeties about which horse would win the race for the same reason. But in Sam's mind, Sam is the boss, he can act how he likes. But unfortunately he is not in a position where he can exercise his influence to the rest of the project, so they are still forced to follow the original rules. And yes, Al was fired, but that was because of him feeding Sam information and doing it deceitfully.
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Old 11-17-2013, 03:41 AM   #120
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But in Sam's mind, Sam is the boss, he can act how he likes. But unfortunately he is not in a position where he can exercise his influence to the rest of the project, so they are still forced to follow the original rules.
That would be a rationalization on Sam's part and not a good one. And really, the only reason why Sam was able to change his history both times was because Al was willing to help him. If Al hadn't agreed to give Sam Donna's father's last name he would've had to think of some other way to accomplish that and I doubt he would've been able to. And of course in the Vietnam leap Al chose to lead Sam to his brother so he could save him. If he hadn't been willing to do that Tom would still have been killed. So, Sam really wasn't able to just do it on his own.

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And yes, Al was fired, but that was because of him feeding Sam information and doing it deceitfully.
Yes, but I also don't think the committee approved of Sam tampering with his life either. I'm sure the committee was aware of the rules that were set down before Sam left -- all of the rules, including the rule about changing their own lives.
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Old 11-17-2013, 04:09 AM   #121
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Yes that is true, and Al also refuses to give him information in A Tale of Two Sweeties about which horse would win the race for the same reason. But in Sam's mind, Sam is the boss, he can act how he likes. But unfortunately he is not in a position where he can exercise his influence to the rest of the project, so they are still forced to follow the original rules. And yes, Al was fired, but that was because of him feeding Sam information and doing it deceitfully.
The Tale of Two Sweeties mention is hilarious:
"What idiot made up that rule!?"
"You did."
XD

Honestly I am not sure I agree with that early concept of the committee monitoring the imagining chamber and enforcing the rules. If this were the case the doubt that Sam was time traveling in Honeymoon Express should not have existed.
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Old 11-17-2013, 04:13 AM   #122
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Honestly I am not sure I agree with that early concept of the committee monitoring the imagining chamber and enforcing the rules. If this were the case the doubt that Sam was time traveling in Honeymoon Express should not have existed.
Maybe Weitzman wanted to get back at Al for setting him up.
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Old 11-18-2013, 02:28 AM   #123
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Going in another direction, something has been on my mind.
In Mirror Image since Sam leaped as himself where did his clothes come from? Assuming he's not in his own subconscious which is one brilliant theory.
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Old 11-18-2013, 02:33 AM   #124
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Going in another direction, something has been on my mind.
In Mirror Image since Sam leaped as himself where did his clothes come from? Assuming he's not in his own subconscious which is one brilliant theory.
That's a good question. He was wearing the Fermi suit when he leaped, so if he's leaping as himself in his own aura he should still be in the Fermi suit. A good argument in favor of this leap taking place in Sam's head.

The same question comes up in the leap out of 'Shock Theater' and into 'The Leap Back'. Sam's still wearing the hospital clothes. Did the leapee return in the leap suit? The doctors and nurses must have found that interesting.
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Old 11-18-2013, 08:28 AM   #125
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Maybe Weitzman wanted to get back at Al for setting him up.
Actually that thought crossed my mind as well, especially when he tells Al it's time to "take his medicine". I think Whitesman had been dying to say that to Al - since he couldn't fire Al, he was going to ensure that Al lost his job at PQL by there no longer being a PQL. And since Diane McBride made it clear that the committee believed "what matters is that we try", the rationalisation that "we can't just take the word of a single person, no matter how respected or decorated" no longer holds much water. Makes me wonder what was happening behind the scenes to make Whitesman pretty much have full control of the committee?
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