Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Highlander: The Series 2x02 - Studies in Light

Season 2's second episode is really, really good. It's one of the better efforts this season has to offer, and the best episode for at least the next ten or so.

The villain du jour is Duncan's old friend... Greg Powers. He's the world's worst self-help guru, and enjoys throwing people who can't swim into water.

He does this so that they'll appreciate their lives more when they survive. The irony is that he himself doesn't appreciate life. He doesn't feel alive anymore, so he tries to make mortals feel alive. This is an interesting concept and I imagine losing appreciation for life could be a common issue that immortals would deal with.

Meanwhile, our heroes go to a photography exhibit, where they run into...

Greg Powers, Duncan's old friend. They were expecting each other, and it's a happy reunion. Of course, the happy won't last long.

Flashback. In the 1930's, Duncan once saved kids from a burning building. And I don't mean a building where fire alarms go off and there's a little bit of smoke. I mean a BURNING BUILDING. There's more fire than wall.

Then he meets this really, really cute reporter. She likes heroic men, so she likes him. He makes lots of goofy faces in response.

"Your camera sees what you want it to see. It can see hope, or despair. It all depends on where you want to spend your life."

Wise words, but I think Adrian Paul was trying really hard to stay out of "Blooper Mode" in these scenes. They all look like he's two seconds from cracking up.

Here's the cute reporter in the present. She sees Duncan and thinks she's going insane.

Greg hangs out with Tessa and Richie and they eat junk food. Richie, sure. I can't imagine Tessa actually eating junk food, though. When Richie steps away for a moment, Greg asks Tessa how she feels about dying. She's all "were you born this sensitive or did you have to take classes?"

Tessa leaves in a huff as Richie returns. Richie has no idea what's up with her, and both guys are all "Women, ha ha"

Then they have some man-time. "You afraid of death, Richie?" asks Greg. This guy is really into death and stuff, isn't he? I bet he has a Livejournal.

Meanwhile, Duncan's cute reporter friend gets in touch with Duncan, and he pays her a visit. Seems she's dying, and she's wondering how he looks the same as he did sixty years ago. He just flat-out tells her. Thankfully, this does not lead to a sex scene like it usually does in Highlander stuff.

Meanwhile, Greg GOES CRAZY and tries to run Richie over.

Richie is all "the FUCK, dude"

He isn't one to take Greg's mind games lying down. He's all "You ride?" and Greg is all "Yeah" and Richie is all "Then it's on, Bitch."

Next thing we know, Greg and Richie show up at Duncan's place with Richie all banged-up from crashing into stuff. Richie had fun.

Macleod isn't happy that Greg is taking Young Richie out to drive a motorcycle through windows and LIVE ON THE EDGE, MAN.

Back when he gave a damn about anything, Greg was an adept doctor.

Now, he cuts himself and tweets about how life is nothing but SADNESS.

He shows up at Tessa's place, looking for Richie...

...and lays him out, after wrecking some of the artwork. He's pretty much goading Duncan to fight him. Why? I don't know. Maybe Duncan sees his potential and it drives him nuts because he doesn't believe it himself, and his only response is to lash out.

Duncan has had enough of this nonsense, and if he has to, they'll battle.

Greg is ALL ABOUT that idea. He has no fear of death whatsoever.

Duncan, meanwhile, forgot to bring his sword. Oops.

Is this the end of Duncan? Is he fated to die in some boiler room, at the hands of a psychotic, whiny midget who posts selfies on Myspace?

Not if there's a metal pole nearby! Duncan is accomplished with a staff, and proceeds to easily outmaneuver Greg.

The battle spills out onto the rooftop. Honestly, Greg has no chance. Duncan with a staff is arguably more formidable than Duncan with a sword. Only problem is he can't actually behead with it.

Oh, problem solved, he just knocked Greg's sword out of his hand. Then he stylishly kicked it into the air and caught it. This is just a huge mismatch on every level...


And Greg dies. He was reincarnated as a flying beetle in the afterlife, where Gokou smacked him with a mallet. DRAGONBALL Z MONTH LIVES ON!

Or not, because Duncan helps him up instead. He's not going to kill yet another old friend today, and thinks Greg can get his head on straight if he tries.

The guy who goes around giving other people near-death experiences so they'll appreciate the life he doesn't appreciate... just had a near-death experience of his own.

Here's his Watcher Chronicle. Pretty much sums things up. Unfortunately we don't see this guy again in later episodes, but it looks like he turned out fine.

Unrelated to the Greg story, Duncan visits his reporter friend again.

He lets her know that he still sees her as she was, just like she sees him.

And, she dies. All kidding aside, that was a powerful ending to the episode. One of the very rare times we see Duncan cry.


  1. Well, it's got to be a powerful episode when you put the kidding aside!
    I don't remember it quite well. Maybe I should rewatch it.

  2. "The Happy won't last long" - Highlander the Series in a nutshell. I do enjoy the resolution to the Greg Powers story.

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