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Maybe Hodges can play violin, but it sure didn't look like he was playing that solo during the show.

 

According to Rogers and his blog, it was Hodges.  I was watching and I didn't see anything that seemed incredibly difficult to me, but then, I don't play the violin.

 

On the basis of what?

 

I'm guessing YouTube video.

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According to Aldis Hodge himself, it was not his playing that was heard. I recall reading his remarks -- here, for instance -- that much as Rogers liked to hype "Aldis plays the violin!" as one of the actor's many talents in the preview publicity, Hodge had only been studying violin for a couple of years. He had enough training to fake the right fingerings and bow movements, but not to develop the tone quality needed to be plausible in that piece, specifically in the very high register where the solo is written, and where a sweet smooth sound is so arduously acquired. (I've been teaching in a university music department for 3 decades now, and I know that even kids who've been studying for a decade or two can sound thin and scratchy.) The DVD commentary makes it clear that this is the sound of another violinist, but the producer whose wife is a violinist herself (is that Rogers?) quotes her as saying that his fingerings and shifts of position were pretty convincing.

 

In any case, whoever was playing, it would have been pre-recorded and played back for the instrumentalists to sync with. That's how this sort of sequence is filmed. And the synchronization was visibly off; that was my original point. I wasn't knocking Hodge for not being the audible violinist, as he never claimed to be (and I wouldn't expect him to be).

Edited by Rinaldo

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I'm guessing YouTube video.

 

Yeah, I was pretty sure someone during the episode recorded Elliott during the song and posted it to youtube and that's where the fans all came from.  I am amazed how fast things spread that way, but apparently it does happen.  Nashville is big enough that a bunch of fan girls could have seen the video, instantly 'fallen in love' and chase him.

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For fans of the stars, Christian Kane is currently filming a new series for TNT, The Librarians, based on the three TV movies produced by Dean Devlin.  Its scheduled to premier in the fall.

 

Aldis Hodge is currently acting in Turn, a story of the Culper spy ring during the American Revolution, on AMC, Sunday nights.

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I'm surprised all the time by how many of the That Guys (male and female) my family recognize on other shows are people we recognize from Leverage. F'rinstance: Quinn, from Scandal, was the client Parker was jealous of whose sister took the bad liver drug in The Double Blind Job. 

 

Also an example of how good the people who make Leverage were, because she wasn't bad in that episode.

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I have no doubt that his description of Coswell was somewhat prejudiced.

 

 

 I wondered about this because in her version the owner of the sword came up to her and announced to everyone that Sophie had arrived as if she was some big celebrity and everyone she met from the owner to the doctor had a crush on her or was flirting with her. It seems odd that she wouldn't have picked up Coswell having a crush on her too, considering she believed everyone else did too.

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Nate did get the unused roses from Coswell, so he did have some reason to think he was besotted.  What tickled me was how everyone else was so scared of Coswell and so Nate made him kind of an idiot.

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What tickled me was how everyone else was so scared of Coswell and so Nate made him kind of an idiot.

 

 

Well, the shotgun he was carrying in Sophie's and Parker's version did make him look badass.  

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Christian Kane took this already really well written character and made him even more well-rounded.

 

He (Kane) was good as Lindsey in Angel, but - and no offence to the Whedon intended here - I think Eliot was more nuanced.  I particularly liked how much of his emotion was 'show, not tell'.  Three examples:

  1. when Hardison is rescued from the grave, Eliot's hug was all at once relief, joy and a little anger at the bad, bad family that buried Alec;
  2. when he heard that Sophie'd been taking his lessons in combat to heart, his pride was so apparent;
  3. when he was being interrogated in the Experiment Job you could see all his gears turning.
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I loved the one in the Mile High Job, where Hardison just shows up at the company, he conducting meetings, they throw him a birthday party, and then he fires himself at the end. And of course Parker's safety instructions about if the plane's on fire and trying to calm Marissa by telling her all the ways she could die. The Bank Job when he and Parker just show up as FBI and of course again no one questions it. When he gets that two second call and begins listing the long list of the Robber's demands, pizza, steak, they want to tail-gate, etch a sketch, overalls...

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Perfectly-still Elliot and his frozen sabra opponent slaughtering each other and everyone else mentally until the whole place is pretend-dead in Two Live Crew. Elliot the authoritarian chef instructor (Food. Is. Life.).

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I enjoy the commentaries. There is so much information given on casting, the locations, writers, etc. And they tell about funny stuff that happened while filming. I haven't listened to all of the commentaries yet, but I'm glad they did one on each episode.

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I love them all, but I have to confess that Eliot is my favorite. My favorite Eliot moment is in Season 1 The Bank Job when he rescues the kidnapped mom. When she says, "who ARE you?" and he replies, "Well, Ma'am, we be the cavalry." my heart just melts. But I also love how exasperated he gets with Hardison and Parker and how he's not afraid to call Nate out when he's being reckless.

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I particularly liked how much of his emotion was 'show, not tell'.  

Another one: when everyone wanted to know what he'd done for Damien Moreau, and he said "Don't ask me that. Because then I'd have to tell you." The look on his face was "and it would break my heart for you to know what I did, but I won't lie."

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The Bat Cave. Hardison wanting to keep the Bat Cave. Elliot doesn't until Hardison mentions an Elliot Signal, cue Elliot asking what kind of signal that would be.

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One thing they keep mentioning in the commentaries is how well Christian Kane delivers the comedy parts, too.  He doesn't have the rep of a comic actor, but he nails it.  (Of course, the classic example is Angel and the "evil hand" scene, but he has plenty of good bits on this show.)

 

Someone once complained on Rogers' blog how unrealistic Eliot's character was -- he was a badass fighter AND a singer AND a chef.  And Rogers was like, well, Kane is all those things, so....

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I'm not good with episode titles and I'm generally not keen on shows that feature romance, but at least Leverage integrated it well...usually. All of that is by way of preamble. Today, I've had a Nate-Sophie moment stuck in my head. They'd been bickering over when they met throughout the episode and at the very end, Nate is explaining that, from jhis pov, he first saw her on a particular date but they didn't meet until later. What sticks with me about the scene is the way he's moving around the table she's sitting at, slowly circling it until he's next to her. That was very sexy.

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Pretty sure that was when they were playing the squabbling married couple in the Mile High Job.

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When I went to see "American Hustle" this past year at the movies I couldn't help but get frustrated because it seemed so long and drawn out.  I realized I'd gotten used to the snappy, quick action of Leverage and the grift being completed in that magic hour time frame.  Even the two parters had individual cons going on in each episode with an overlying plot tying things together.  I believe that only The Nigerian Job lasted longer than an hour episode.

 

I agree with the above poster about the Italian.  Poor Elisabetta really can't act.  I know Rogers was enamored of her but all of her beauty didn't make her a good actress.  An actress on par with the rest of the cast would have made a world of difference.

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I wonder if it was that Rogers was enamored of her or if it mightn't have had something to do with the production deal George Clooney signed with TNT around the same time.

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I wonder if it was that Rogers was enamored of her or if it mightn't have had something to do with the production deal George Clooney signed with TNT around the same time.

I've got very circular thinking, so I got a kick out of this: Canalis >> dated (was dating at the time?) Clooney >> ER >> 'replaced' as dark/handsome man by Višnjić.

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Well, during many of the commentaries on the DVD, Rogers said many times how beautiful she was and how lucky Clooney was to be dating her.  So yeah, I think Rogers was enamored of her, which at least colored his view of her acting, or lack thereof.

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Also, I always figure that nobody is going to say something negative about an actor on a DVD commentary (unless they're safely dead by decades, and even then...). So if nothing else, there's always her beauty to comment on. (I noticed a similar circumstance on the commentary for the movie Out of Sight -- coincidentally, another Clooney connection -- in which the only thing said about the quality of Jennifer Lopez's contribution was a remark about how beautiful she looked in one scene.)

Edited by Rinaldo
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Yeah, I kind of wondered about that myself. Rogers was always a huge booster of his actors. I have trouble believing that he would have gone to gee, she's purty, or brought up who she was sleeping with, if he had anything to say about her work.

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When I went to see "American Hustle" this past year at the movies I couldn't help but get frustrated because it seemed so long and drawn out.  I realized I'd gotten used to the snappy, quick action of Leverage and the grift being completed in that magic hour time frame.  Even the two parters had individual cons going on in each episode with an overlying plot tying things together.  I believe that only The Nigerian Job lasted longer than an hour episode.

 

I agree with the above poster about the Italian.  Poor Elisabetta really can't act.  I know Rogers was enamored of her but all of her beauty didn't make her a good actress.  An actress on par with the rest of the cast would have made a world of difference.

I didn't think American Hustle was anywhere near as good as Leverage, either. I also think after watching all 5 seasons of Leverage I'm not as easily fooled on these hustle movies/shows, just as reading all of Agatha Christie and many other mystery writers, plus years of watching mystery shows/movies makes it pretty hard to fool me in a mystery film or show. You get used to all of the tricks.

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I'm late to the game, as usual, and have been watching Leverage on Netflix.  I started because I fell deeply in lust with Christian Kane and have also developed a hankering for Aldis Hodge.  Timothy Hutton is an old-time crush from high school, so it's all good.

 

I watched "Ten Lil Grifters" tonight and literally hooted (my husband looked up from his book) when Nate came out dressed as Ellery Queen, "the greatest detective of all time."  I always knew he looked a lot like his dad but it really came home with him dressed like that.

 

I am thoroughly enjoying the show, even all lust issues aside. 

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Is it wrong to admit to a mad crush on both Huttons?  Being sort of in the middle, age-wised, it seemed to work fine for my rich fantasy life. Bwaaahahahahahaha

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She started out as "10 pounds of crazy in a 5 pound bag" and wound up running the show.  In between, she developed a fondness for tasering people. 

 

One of my favorite Parker moments is at the end of season 2.  Hardison is telling Eliot about his weekend work making costumes (like the FBI windbreakers) for the team and how no one appreciates it.  Parker chimes in that she appreciates it, and wishes she were with them.  Nate reminds her that she's needed to search the mayor's office while he's out.  "Fine," she pouts, "But I never get to do anything fun."  Then she dives off the roof of the Belbridge City Hall.

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She started out as "10 pounds of crazy in a 5 pound bag" and wound up running the show.  In between, she developed a fondness for tasering people. 

And forking them.  Don't forget about forking people.

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I sometimes think that the reason I like Parker is because I love Hardison and I see her through his eyes.  Many of my favorite Parker moments are connected to him, starting with his closing speech in The Juror Number Six Job, and the little smile they exchange.  He was always the one, even more than Sophie, who could see through the damage to the person beneath, and who cared, and who helped her understand caring.   

 

I'm not sure I can pick a favorite moment, but I love her as a flight attendant in The Mile High Job.

 

Also, there's a moment (I think it's in The Three Days of the Hunter Job) when she asks, if Sophie's doing Nate's job, then who's doing Sophie's job, and they tell her she is - and the instant of panic in her eyes when she looks at Nate is pitch-perfect.

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And forking them.  Don't forget about forking people.

 

OK, I"m twelve. I mean, I've been twelve for a long time, but basically, twelve.

 

And now that I've gotten that out of the way, I've always thought of that moment in the Stork Job as Parker picking up a stranger at a party and forking him.

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The moment Tim Hutton appeared dressed as Ellery Queen, I hooted out loud, alone in the house. (That's one of those "they should've done X" in-joke situations that people always think about TV series, but this time they actually did it.) I immediately emailed two good friends who didn't follow Leverage but ought to know about it, and one of them flipped the channel immediately and soon became a diehard fan of the entire series.

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The moment Tim Hutton appeared dressed as Ellery Queen...  

Well, not really that moment, but when we learned that we were going to meet Jimmy Ford, I wished James Hutton were still alive.  Skerritt did a great job, but how cool would it've been to see father and son Hutton act together?

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OK, I"m twelve. I mean, I've been twelve for a long time, but basically, twelve.

I set 'em up, you knock 'em down.

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I barely watched the Tim Hutton version of Nero Wolfe (I did watch the earlier NBC version with Lee Horsley as Archie and William Conrad as Nero Wolfe).  I was aware of it but always seemed to miss it so I never was very invested with Kari Matchett and Tim Hutton's previous TV relationship.  On Leverage I didn't see the chemistry that others were so invested in with the two characters.  I thought it was a terrible shame that the marriage collapsed but that happens many times with family tragedy such as the death of a child.  Therefore I was never pulling for Maggie and Nate to get back together.  In the first season I did think that the relationship with Sophie was forced on the viewers but I never hated like some did.  When viewed in the proper sequence season one makes much more sense story and relationship wise and once I got the DVD's I became much more accepting of the Nate/Sophie dynamic.  

 

Once we got into the later seasons, I loved the Nate/Sophie relationship, especially late season 4 and all of 5.  

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in the DVD extras there's a blooper with Kane holding up the figurine saying he's the best director ever.  (or maybe his favorite?, now I have to rematch, oh what a shame!)

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Exactly, as we viewers got to see when Hardison tried to run the crew or grift.  His diamond thief was too over the top and put everyone at risk (and pissed off Parker) and The Gold Job was way too complicated.  I liked that they showed Nate explaining to Hardison about all of the back up plans and how it took quite a bit of ruthlessness sometimes to successfully run the crew.

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I always enjoyed the little helpful advice sprinkled throughout the episodes, like them showing people using the same PINs for all key pads (ATM PIN is always their 4 digit number), or even when someone doesn't use their birth/anniversary date, they just announce to some stranger another key date they use for a code (I just saw the Hot Potato Job, where the main villain tells Nate the date he got elevated to CEO, and that's the date he used on the keypad where the potato was kept).  Makes me feel good that my PINS are always different and based off my friends' birthdates.  Helps me remember them, and no one will know which friend got which PIN.

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I've been reminded after re-watching my DVDs of this show, that it really is one of my favorite shows of all time (if not my absolute favorite). One of the reasons for this is that overall, the focus was to make the show enjoyable to watch. A few reasons for this being:

- They really did act as a family. More importantly if you watch the episodes in order, you can see the connections being built between everyone. And, you could tell that they genuinely liked each other. So many shows have friendships that are so bitter that you really wonder why they put up with each other. But in Leverage, you had examples of friendships that were romantic, friendly, brotherly, parental, and more and you (or at least I) never questioned why they would stick with each other when things got rough. And the growth of these friendships really shows (just compare how everyone acted when Sophie "conned" them at the end of season 1 to when Nate did it at the end of season 2, to when Eliot did it at the end of season 3 (conning/lying?)). They get less angry and more hurt because they got closer to each other throughout the seasons. 
- The romances. I am not a fan of romances on television usually because they are forced into the story line, and they force changes in characters for the sole purpose of making the romance work. But in Leverage the main two were built up naturally, and I ended up enjoying both. My only problem was how Nate/Sophie acted in season 1, specifically because of how much Sophie talked about Nate's drinking. Again, this took away from her own character being built but luckily it improved so much in the second season. Even so, while that annoyed me I am still able to watch those episodes with no problem. As for Parker/Hardison, their friendship was built up beautifully throughout the show that it was no surprise that they got together. And it was believable because you knew they liked each other. And I love that there were no triangles. I loved that so much.
-  The characters. While it took me not too long to warm up to Sophie (and for some reason I started the show thinking I would hate Parker - God was I wrong about that!) I ended the show realizing I needed them all there. Sure season 2 still had a couple good episodes without Sophie, but as a whole I never watched the show thinking about how much better it would be minus one character. I loved all of them for different reasons. It also makes the show as a whole more enjoyable. I didn't watch it thinking that I would have to skip a scene because I couldn't stand a character. 

So many more reasons, but I can't think of them now. Overall, the show produced some unbelievable moments (sometimes the bystanders they came across seemed a bit too gullible, though that does make me wonder how I would act if one of them came up to me) and didn't follow through at times when I think they should have (I think they missed an opportunity when Hardison almost drowned to have him be really angry at Eliot - Eliot was always annoyed at him, but this time Alec had good reason to be mad at Eliot. Sure, he was angry for a little bit, but I think it could have been explored more while also explaining Eliot's past with Moreau). However, it really was one of my favorites and the good certainly outweighs the minor problems. I can always look to watch it when I need a mood booster. 

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So watching this episode last night on my DVDs with the commentary.  Nothing was said, but I have to wonder if "Dean Chesney", the CEO of a defense contractor with a heart problem, was meant to be Dick Cheney.  Sure looked the part.

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I can't recall, did we ever find out her real name?  I'll find out for sure when I reach the end of my S5 DVDs.

 

I always thought it was funny how she was a great actress in a con, but couldn't do it on stage/camera (except for when it was part of the con).

 

 

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yes, Nate says her real name in the last minutes of the final episode.  Its quick and quiet so you have to pay attention.

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I would like to respectfully request a slight thread title change (to keep in line with the other character threads): how about : "Sophie Devereaux: Grifter, Who Are You, Really?"  (Or, based upon Hanahope's mention of her 'acting': "Sophie Devereaux: Grifter, :'Actress'"? 

 

I've mentioned that it was Gina Bellman that brought me to Leverage; I wanted to see whether she'd play British or America (at the time there were tons of English actors playing American on TV).  So, I was pleasantly surprised that she was the grifter and so could play both British and American and so many other accents/dialects.  Loved her Southern Belle in Two Horse Job; that they threw Mandarin in for her to speak was just icing.

 

Just a thought about the thread name change.

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Watched Juror #6 yesterday and Parker's "sweet merciful cooked flesh" made me realize there's no quote thread here.  I'd've used "Age of the Geek, Baby" but that's being used in the Hardison thread.

 

Speaking of Hardison, I frequently find myself saying "Damnit Hardison" whenever I'm annoyed by someone.

 

What are other favourite quotes? 

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One of my faves is from The San Lorenzo Job.

 

Moreau is trying to figure out how Nate is managing to beat him as he controls the government, the media, etc.

 

And Nate replies, "You know what I have?  I have a twenty-four-year-old genius with a smart phone and a problem with authority."

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During The Second David Job: by way of Eliot telling Nate he soemtimes prefers it when Sophie runs things:

 

You learn and you con.  It's the inflection and a tiny head tilt that make it.

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