Friday, October 9, 2009

FlashForward: Season 1 Episode 3 - 137 Sekunden

Greetings crow killers!  (not feeling that label either?  Could be a season long mission to come up with a name!)  Welcome back yet again to our evolving study of the new television show known as FlashForward!  Episode 3 still left me dazzled and wanting more.  And we seem to be stumbling upon a trend that the last 4 or 5 minutes of the episode is going to unleash some groundbreaking concepts or information about the Flashes.  Does that mean everything else is filler?  Some might thing so, but we are getting hints here and there about things to come.  And of course, little details in people's flashes and their present reality have been revealed to make us ponder the true nature of these visions.   I have some crazy thoughts, and just maybe, I will share them with you!  It's time to dig in folks.

137 Sekunden.  No, not someone's address.  Not someone's name.  But duh....I'm sure anyone that Googled it found out Sekunden was German for "seconds".   Of course 137 is the number of seconds that everyone blacked out (2 minutes 17 seconds).  Our new favorite Nazi in Munich, as well as a commenter on last week's blog, gave us some other details around the number 137 to chew on later into the episode.  We'll get there!

This week's episode gave us pretty much 3 major storylines to follow.  Mark's MOSAIC Investigation led him to Munich, Germany to question a prisoner with valuable information.   Demetri reunited with his fiance' and furthered his investigation into his own "destiny".  Aaron Stark finally got some screen time in his search for the truth behind his vision of his living daughter.  And of course, as is the trend, there were some other small scenes for other characters to tie everything together.   Let's see what we can figure out!

Personal Quests for Answers
Demetri Noh
Demetri was last left talking to a woman, Nhadra Udaya across continents who told her that she was reading an intelligence briefing in her vision that said Demetri would be murdered on March 15th, 2010.  We continue his story right where it left off.

  • This woman tells Demetri that he will be shot 3 times in the chest and that he's an American FBI agent.  She also mentions that maybe now that he knows he can prevent it.  Then she hangs up. 
  • Dem tries to trace the call but unsuccessfully.  Why all the secrecy on her end?  Is she playing games with Demetri?   Demetri didn't waste time enlisting Agent Gough on trying to trace the call.  
  • Meanwhile, we meet Demetri's fiance Zoey Andata (played by Gabrielle Union).  She has been stuck in Seattle since the blackout due to planes being grounded across the globe.  She gets on a flight back to L.A. that is occupied only by a few passengers including the CEO of the airline, trying to prove it is safe to fly again.  Funny stuff!  
  • Demetri meets Zoey at the airport, she immediately wants to discuss what they both saw and mentioned that she figured they both saw the same thing.  Demetri decides to put off the flash discussion and suggests a motel, complete with a "blackout special" sign out front.   And lamest line of the week goes to Zoey who, after "reuniting" with her significant other, says "that's the 2nd time I've blacked out this week!"  or something like that.  Ouch...but of course, still earned a chuckle!  
  • Anyway, finally Zoey reveals what she saw in her flash.  She was in a wedding dress and they were in Hawaii at a place where they have been together in the past.  She says that she saw Demetri there, but WE did not get a glimpse of Demetri there.   Demetri lies and said he saw the same thing.  Zoey believes in the vision and thinks they should set their wedding date for April 29, 2010.   "D-Day"   Demetri is not a big fan! 

  • So what's going on here everyone?  Demetri saw nothing, was told by this woman that he will die on March 15th (based on her "supposed vision"), yet Zoey supposedly saw Demetri in HER vision on D-Day!   And if Zoey did see Demetri, why didn't WE see him in the vision?  I have some thoughts to these visions, but I want to wait until we discuss a few more before getting into it.  
  • Later, Demetri checks back in with Agent Gough who was unable to trace the phone call from the woman.  The results came from 2 sites at the same time.  Demetri, obsessed to find the unknown caller, wants a log of calls made that went through the 2 cell phone towers which could be in the "millions".   Stay tuned on this one!   
Aaron Stark
We all figured Aaron's storyline of finding out if his daughter is still alive was coming eventually.  Well, the search began today.  We start with him meeting up with Mark at his home and discussing what we learned of Charlie's vision last week "D. Gibbons is a bad man".  Aaron advised Mark to do whatever it takes to find the man before he can hurt his family.  He said that's what HE would do.  The world has changed, maybe the rules need to as well.   Aaron may as well have been talking about himself as he went to great lengths in this episode to confirm his daughter's status.

  • We may have already known this, but it was brought up in this episode that Aaron is a divorced man.  He catches Mark in a lie to Olivia about the phone being broken.  Olivia had just used the phone calling their Nanny (Nicole), who hasn't been to work since the flash.   Mark now is keeping the return to the booze in his flash as well as Charlie's flash information from Olivia.  This cannot end well!   (Sidenote: the cartoon Charlie was watching...did anyone notice if her stuffed squirrel was one of the characters?)
  • Sorry for getting sidetracked!  Aaron, an alcoholic, heads to Tinhorn Flats Bar to talk to the bartender, who ends up being his ex-wife Katie.  LOST and Deadwood Fans note, it's Kim Dickens!  (Aka, Cassidy - friend of Kate's, and Baby Mama to Sawyer's kid Clementine)   Aaron tells Katie of his vision of their daughter.  That she was alive and that he wanted Katie to sign an affidavit to exhume her remains and identify the body.   Katie flips out.  She brings up that her vision was her doing her mundane job at the bar.  Same thing as always, same regulars in the bar.    She sarcastically said that maybe Aaron was in "heaven" or that he saw wishful thinking.   This is kind of in-line with one of the theories I'm brewing that will probably end up being totally wrong!   But let's wait a little while longer! 
  • Aaron swears that he's going to find their daughter.  Katie wants nothing to do with him and refuses to sign anything.   Aaron goes through Mark using the whole "if it was Charlie you know you'd do it" angle.  He also, to all doubters that didn't see any John Locke in him, told Mark that this was a "Leap of Faith"!  Oh yes, this is a man that WANTS to believe in miracles!  Mark agrees to have the body exhumed, to which he gets Demetri to carry out.  

  • The last scene we see with Aaron is him returning to the bar to talk to Katie.  The body was identified as their daughter's.  Not all is for naught though.  Katie and Aaron have a long embrace and Katie consoles Aaron.   
  • So what is going on here?  Is this proof that the future visions are not real?  Or perhaps, not ALL of them are real?  Let's keep digging through the episode.      

The Mosaic Investigation

Quale Prison -Munich, Germany 
Rudolph Geyer, a former Nazi serving a life sentence in Quale prison, is having a discussion with a prison guard about their flashes.  The Guard said his was the norm.  Him doing his every day thing, talking to his wife about every day mundane conversation.  Rudolph claims to have seen something that insures his release from the prison.  dum dum dummmmm!

Los Angeles
Mark's MOSAIC crew - Janis Hawk and minor player Agent Vreede - have been going files from various intelligence agencies across the globe who claim to have figured out what caused the blackouts.  They eventually stumble upon one that gets Mark's "spidey senses" tingling.  (nice one Janis).

  • Gotta love the one claim from an intelligence agency that the blackout/flashes were caused by "toxic gas that was released as a result of crustal rifting"  and Agent Vreede's response "So the Earth farted and we blacked out?"    Good times! 
  • Of course, things only got interesting when Vreede mentioned that a prisoner in Germany claimed to know why the blackouts lasted 137 Sekunden (seconds).  CUE Mark Benford's FLASH and his Wall of Weird! (sorry, wrong show).  There was a flash of 137 Sekunden and a picture of an old man which just happens to match the photo in the file.   Even more interesting, the file mentions Mark Benford!  

  • Mark and crew bring the revelation to the Chief who is doubting the need to follow up on a Nazi with some information.  He wants answers on Suspect Zero and D. Gibbons and their connection.   Mark sells him by stating that this could be the clue that leads them to identifying Suspect Zero and D. Gibbons.   And just like that Mark and Janis are off to Germany. 
  • Sidenote: the chief is pre-occupied with having to prepare a memorial service for their fallen agents.  
Mark and Janis's Interrogation of Rudolph Geyer
Mark and Janis arrive in Munich, Germany.  They are accompanied to the prison by some German official that states that the FBI agents are guests in their country and have no authority.
  • Janis shows her hatred towards the Nazi by bringing up Holocaust references and them possibly using the prison has a concentration camp.   The German official retorted with Americans wiping out the Native Americans to seize their land and also enlist slaves to work for them for a couple hundred years.   Mark gets the winning line though "Yes but we also gave you Britney Spears!"  

  • So Mark and Janis meet with Geyer and his lawyer, but it does not go as easy as expected.  Geyer mentions that he saw Benford's name in his flash.  Before he was incarcerated, he lived in America.  The original deal was to allow Rudolph to finish his term in a minimum security prison if he cooperated with the investigation.  No dice.  Geyer wants full immunity and wants to return to America.   Taking the place of Demetri in this episode as the DOUBTER of Mark's visions is Janis.  And she goes on quite a rant of how they shouldn't allow this Nazi murderer to go free.  

  • Geyer and his lawyer eventually agree to compromise by offering up proof of his vision before giving his valuable information.  Geyer starts talking about symbolism behind the number 137.   He talks about the symbolism of Janis wearing a thumb on her right hand.  He hinted that it referred to declaring one's homosexuality, as does GOOGLE refer to this.  But Google also refers to this as symbolic of stating one's independence.   This is basically Geyer's segueway into discussing the Jewish mysticism of Kabbalah: "It is a set of esoteric teachings that is meant to explain the relationship between an infinite, eternal and essentially unknowable Creator with the finite and mortal universe of His creation." (Wikipedia Entry)  Anyway, apparently the numerican value for Kabbalah in Hebrew is the number 137. Kudos to commenter "Synchromystic Librarian" for calling this out last week.   

  • Mark is not interested in numbers symbology.  (Well, kids...I guess we can throw away our 4 8 15 16 23 42 references from FlashForward and leave them for LOST.  Gotta say I'm temporarily relieved!)  He yells and screams until Geyer starts giving useful information.  Geyer begins to discuss his flash.  In his vision he was being "Re-patriotized" to the United States and he bought his freedom with his 2nd clue.  The security officer at customs was Jerome Murphy.  In his vision Geyer explains that he's coming back to the US because he has a "murder to thank for it". Geyer's lawyer suggested that the FBI find Jerome Murphy and verify that he had a similar Flash, and then after his pardon was granted, he would reveal the rest of his information.  Geyer was very confident that he would be returning to the United States on 4/29/2010, so he was not willing to negotiate any further.

Meanwhile Back in the States
  • Stan Wedeck gets the information from Mark and recruits a reluctant Demetri to track down Jerome Murphy.  Long story short, Demetri found Jerome as an "APPLICANT" to be a custom's officer.  He wasn't one yet, but supposedly he'll be one in April 2010. 
  • Very funny scene ensues when Demetri goes to Jerome's house to question him.   Jerome is dancing around in his underwear to KC and the Sunshine Band's "Boogie Shoes"  
  • Jerome Murphy is very excited that he passed the test in the future to become a Customs Official.  Jerome was scared that he failed the physical due to his clearly illegal and regular drug intake!   He did verify the story when he saw the picture of Geyer.  "I know that dude!!"  He discussed that he remembered admitting him to the United States the man saying that he had a "murder" to thank for it.  
  • Once Demetri verifies the story he leaves but not before knocking over a bong pipe.  Jerome tries to reason with Demetri that he shouldn't be arrested because then his vision wouldn't come true.  While Demetri had no interest in arresting the guy, you couldn't help but sense that he was considering arresting him to try and prevent the future from coming true. 
Okay, let's pause for THEORY TIME! 
So, it seems that these visions are falling into certain categories doesn't it?
  • There are the people that are in bad places in their current life who get visions of a promising future (Aaron Stark sees his daughter alive, Bryce is about to kill himself and is now super excited about his future, a pothead somehow passes his drug test and gets a job as a US Customs Officer?)
  • There are people that seem to be in a good place that see their lives turning for the bad.  (Mark returns to the sauce and people are after him, Charlie has her nightmare vision of D. Gibbons, Olivia is unfaithful to Mark)
  • There are people that saw themselves living their mundane lives.  (The security guard at the prison, Katie running the bar, Wedeck using the bathroom)
  • People that didn't see anything at all vs people who saw these people in their visions.  
  • Alright, so I don't really have a concrete theory, but what if people all saw different TYPES of visions.  What if whoever is possibly behind this vision wanted for some reason to turn the tables?  Enlighten the depressed, Bring the happy down a notch?   But, they didn't have a plan for everyone, so some people just got a vision of them doing the same thing they were doing before.  Which might explain why Wedeck was in the bathroom for both of his flashes and possibly Katie was at the bar in both of her flashes?    Why this would be the case and HOW they would go about figuring out who is happy vs sad?   Yeah, you got me.  It's just a theory folks!   But this line of thought would go into suggesting that the visions aren't entirely real, which could help explain why Aaron's daughter Tracy appears to still be dead.   What throws this theory off is Demetri with seeing nothing and Zoey seeing a bright future when it doesn't seem her current life is in shambles.  
  • Oh well, just some current thoughts I have brewing up in that noggin of mine.  Wanted to share!


  • Mark and Janis are shown having dinner and discussing what to do with Geyer.  Janis is still pessimistic about the visions and brings up how her vision had her pregnant.  Speaking of which, did she say how far along in the pregnancy she was?  Because if it was 6 months, shouldn't she be getting pregnant soon?   I think I've read theories that maybe somehow she become pregnant during the blackout, but that's kinda weird right?   
  • Mark brings up the words of wisdom from his friend Aaron who said it's a "leap of faith" and that they need to follow these visions.  Of course, at the same time, he is still hiding the fact that he wants to prevent his OWN vision from coming true.  
  • Demetri called in and verified Jerome had the same vision as Geyer.  Mark tells Geyer he is a free man and requests that he starts talking.  Geyer said that when he woke from his flash, he looked out the window and saw the city burning.  But he also saw that the courtyard was littered with dead crows.  The "murder" Geyer was referring to in the vision was a "Murder of Crows".  I guess this could be taken 2 ways since there are a bunch of dead crows as a result of the flash.  But also that a group of Crows is referred to as a "MURDER".   Ahhh interesting.  
  • At the time, it would seem that Mark and Janis got played by the man for freedom.  Of course, it would seem that possibly Geyer felt this way too as he admitted he knows no significance behind the numbers 137.  But he does know that he will be set free because of the information he has provided.  
  • Mark and Janis, feeling as if they failed head back to the US.

Other things happening in L.A.
  • Olivia and Stan Wedeck's wife Felica are apparently friends and discussing their visions.  While Olivia refrains from saying anything significant about her flash, Felicia brings up that her son's bedroom is no longer occupied by her son or his belongings but that of a small boy.  She is optimistic that these visions will come true and that this boy is going to come into her life and she will be his mother.  Ironically, by the memorial service at the end of the episode, the boy is sitting in the front row with another woman that would appear to be his mother.  Hmmmmm wonder where THAT is going?  

  • Stan Wedeck delivers the speech at the memorial service and borrows a line from Aaron Stark through Mark that "We are all prophets" and while prophets suffered, God loved them all.   
  • Everyone went to a bar after the memorial service.  Demetri gave in to Zoey and said that they should plan for "D DAY" as their wedding date.  He said that he wants to make his future happen.  Not sure what the change of heart was unless he's trying to give Zoey false hope?  Or is he starting to believe that he will avoid his death on 3/15/10?  I'm still guessing he will avoid that untimely death.  His character is too interesting to just boot off.  
  • Someone at the bar made a comment about how these memorial services are probably happening every day around the world.  
Mark's Brainstorm
This triggers an idea for Mark as he recruits Janis to go back to the office.  They search for the population of Crows since the blackout.  Apparently it plummeted but some did continue on.  They expand the search through the MOSAIC website to try and find trends.  Something comes up that states that in 1991 there was an incident of fallen crows and as you can see from the text on the screen, a mass loss of consciousness was investigated in Somalia in 1991!!   Mark said it best that they have spent so much time worried about if the flashes will happen again that they never considered they may have happened before!  (I'll join the club Mark, how did I not even ponder that!?)

Somalia - Ganwar Region - 1991
We see a boy working the fields as he runs into a "Murder of Crows" flying around in the air.  LOTS of crows.  And all of a sudden they fall to the ground.  The boy goes to investigate and sees them all lying on the ground outside a town.   Up in the air though, we see a large tower and above it some FLASH of light or an explosion of some sorts.  


Daaaaaaaang!!!  (yep, still no WOW, this might take all season too!).   So the blackout has happened before, but I guess in a more controlled, smaller scale?  Seems like this may have been whoever is behind the blackout, testing their product??  Maybe not.   So what's up with the flash of light?  Where is that coming from?  Does that tower in the picture above hold any significance?   Do we think that Mark will be going to find this boy that was on the scene?  It will be 18 years so obviously he's not a child anymore?  Surely, that's what has to happen next.

Consider me intrigued!   What say you everyone?  Did you like this episode as much as the first 2?  The final moments definitely seem to be the most interesting and plot advancing.  Any new theories out there about what is behind all of this?   Anything blatant that I forgot to talk about? (Surely, there is!)   Feel free to add your thoughts to the comments below.   Thanks for everyone who is sticking with this blog and contributing to the discussion.   Let's keep it up!  See you next week.

Special Thanks again to THE ODI for posting screen captures from the episode!  

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Greg Tramel said...

we're looking at Tesla over here

FlashForward: A Murder to Thank

Anonymous said...


Mike V. said...

Nice on Tesla Greg! I thought about mentioning that connection but decided against it lol

As for Dominic, he was cast on the show later on. I think he probably will be showing up in the next couple episodes. Maybe as soon as next week!

Giarc Revilo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Giarc Revilo said...

"toxic gas that was released as a result of crustal rifting" and Agent Vreede's response "So the Earth farted and we blacked out?"

At the end of the scene in Somalia. It looks just like what those agents described. Even though they were joking around.

Also the Star logo was on the arrivals/departures board in the airport. The same Star on the forearms of the masked men in Stark's FF

Mike V. said...

Giarc, interesting point with the crustal rifting possibly being accurate. I guess I cannot get the concept out of my head that there is some agency behind the blackout/flashes.

I'll have to check that airport scene again to see the starts. Thanks for the heads up!

BTW...was reading stuff and talking to other people. Aaron's daughter COULD still possibly be alive because we found out in the first episode that they only shipped back "pieces" of Tracy's body. Nasty to think about but what if they got back legs or a hand or something like that. In Aaron's Flash we only see Tracy's face right? So, it is possible that she could be now confined to a wheelchair with no legs or something like that. Should be interesting to see what pans out!

Rukshan said...

It may be that Aaron could have been having a nap in his future and dreaming of being with his daughter, and Dimitri`s girlfriend may have seen her own wedding, but we dont know if she saw him there, we only saw her walking towards him.. or may be she was dreaming too...

Love the tesla coil, really miss Red Alert :)

It clearly looks like some kind of flair or some radiation from that tower.That tower may be some kind of research facility, obvioulsy a small village like thats not gona host a big tv tower or have a air port yes, i think there is a government/company/organisation behind that miniature black out and then they some how managed to recreate it some where in outer space well enough to affect the whole world, why they did it I dont know.. may ne they used that 137 seconds to make a lot of money or influnce things for the whole world in some way...

Jenn said...

I think that Zoey only assumed that her flashforward was of her wedding and that Dimitri was there. She was quite far away from the people that she was walking towards and part of me thinks that her flashforward could really have been of Dimitri's memorial service - perhaps they are spreading his ashes in the ocean?

MJ said...

Agree Jenn - I though the very same thing that she could be at Demitri's memorial.

Also - still not convinced Dem is dead. This foreign woman read a briefing that said he was dead. That does not make it so.

Not for nothing - Zoey has no clue that Dem might not be there. Everyone knows that on 4/29 something big will happen. What makes her think that her FBI fiancee would even be allowed to take off on that day ? I don't think so! Just saying. It's like when 1/1/00 hit - no one in IT was on vacation I can tell you.

The common thread on this show seems to be 'mean and the women they lie too'. LOL

Wondering if people - without realizing it - are seeing what they want to see or what they believe to be their lives. I mean, some people aren't dreamers. So Katie sees just another day, the head FBI guy sees nothing new, his wife sees another child - she probably unconsciously misses her grown up kid. The suicidal doc unconsciously is wondering isn't there more to life and sees that. A dad sees his dead daughter alive. Zoey can only see her marriage, and maybe Dem can't see anything because even though he's crazy for Z he can't quite picture his life as a married man yet.

The big hole in my theory is Mark and his Wife - and Charlie. Unless unconsciously she wants out of the marriage - but that does not explain Mark or Charlie.

Mike V. said...

I agree with everyone about Zoey possibly only thinking she saw Demetri in her flash but probably didn't since we didn't see him there. very interesting on the memorial service concept. wasn't she wearing a wedding dress in the flash? I'd have to watch again.

Rukshan, interesting with Aaron possibly dreaming in the vision. I think that might get a little too confusing to explain or could even be considered a "cop out" if they go that route! lol We'll see though! I agree though, that the tower in the final shot does seem like it could play a role in the flashes. Of course, if it did...wouldn't we think there would've been some investigation into that tower and the organization that built it? I guess we'll find out if there WAS!

MJ, i'm not convinced about Demetri either. It just seems too simple doesn't it? If he's a main character who is forecasted to die in the first episode of the we really think they'll kill him off or will there be some kind of exception to the rule. Will the people that saw nothing turn out to be something different than them being dead? Yeah, the "red-shirt" cop in Utah ended up dying but that could be to throw us off the scent of what is really going on with Demetri. Like...there is still the question....why was he so far away from Mark 2 minutes and 17 seconds after the flash? Did he fly out of the car? And how did he not get injured?

Also agree about 4/29 being a big day...and the anticipation that will grow as they approach that date. That's why I'm confused why everyone would be doing exactly what they see in their vision. I guess people like Zoey will want to make their futures come true so they will do everything in their power to be doing exactly what they were doing in their visions. But I agree...if Demetri was still alive...I would think he would be working on that day!

MJ..interesting theory!...kinda in the same vein as mine. I'm seeing more of the trend of people seeing the opposite of where they are in their life. Happy in life - sad vision, Sad in Life - Happy vision.....Status Quo? Status Quo vision. But things like Zoey seeing a wedding doesn't fit with that theory! In either of the visions though...we're saying that they're not entirely accurate to what is GOING to happen.

I think if a show like this is going to have legs to go multiple would get awfully boring if they saw visions that always came true! RIGHT?? Of course, if we find out they can change the visions, then how much weight does THAT hold?

ugh...brain is getting tired! I'm gonna take a break and go back to work! lol

Anonymous said...

I'm sure others have heard this, but I was excited to hear on the news this morning that FlashForward has been picked up for an entire season! Woot!!

Mike V. said...

I'm excited too! Definitely going to have my work cut out for me with LOST, FF and Idol in the spring. Not sure how I'll manage, but I'm always up for a challenge!

MJ said...

Hmm - I have wondered but now know - there is more to the visions then we have been given. Interview with Sonya Walger confirms that there is more to hers. So all our guessing will be for naught because there is more to be seen. LOL But that's what makes it fun.

She talks a little Lost as well. Strange though - she talks about not having met alot of the Lost stars and mentions that she would be star struck with Matt Fox - but hello - they had a scene together when Penny actually did rescue the O6 - so that made not sense to me. But whatever.

Mike V. said...

I had read before the show started David Goyer talking about us seeing "seconds" from the flash at a time...but that we saw a significant amount of Mark's in the Pilot. I still am confused (and I know I'm meant to be) how Dylan recognizes Olivia and she doesn't recognize him! lol Of course...there could be a hidden camera in the house...and D. Gibbons is showing Charlie and Dylan what is going on in the Benford house...but that is just nuts! lol

I was reading that interview last night and I guess I glanced over the Matthew Fox thing. Yeah, unless they did some incredible editing she definitely worked with Fox in the season 4 finale and Season 5's "The Lie". How can we forget Jack ruining the Dez and Penny reunion by saying something like "nice to meet you...but we really need to talk"! lol ahhh good times.

and now back to flashforward! (so tough to not get caught up in LOST discussions with the cast overlapping and them directly targeting LOST fans for the new show! But i'm trying my best!)

Thanks for posting the link MJ!

Anonymous said...

Any theories on why the crows died in Somalia, but the boy did not black out? The crows in Germany died just as Geyer was recovering from the blackout?

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