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S01.06: The Card Game Job

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Drops July 9, 2021 on IMBd TV's free streaming service. 

The Leverage team dives into the world of a high fantasy collectible card game with a devoted following to take down a pharmaceutical bad boy who is price-gouging drugs to fund his own house of cards.
 

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Sophie sucking hard on stage and then becoming amazing, the second it turned into part of the con, was so pot on. I grinned from ear to ear.

That is all.

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I kept wanting to yell "Huzzah!" like Sophie!  *LOL*

Best line, by Parker regarding Cordozar: "He looks like if a weasel and a snake had a baby then they dipped it in slime".  I am SO going to use that one!

I will say that Eliot in a blow-up dragon ring definitely made me giggle.  Then he realized who the other jousters were and it was dragon's off!  All hail, Glen the Savage!  

Awwww, Breanna really nailed that ending speech.  Even made me tear up a littlle.  

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Eliot's response when he realizes he has to watch one of Sophie's "performances"... 🤣🤣🤣

 

LeverageR 106 - Eliot react 1.gif

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Yup Elliot's facial expression when he realized Sophie would be acting on stage.  "Oh, great."   But I do like call back here as well, not just that Sophie is a bad actor on stage when she is acting a scene, but that when her head makes the connection that what she is doing is part of the con, then she is no longer a bad actress but a great grifter.  And we could see that click happen when Breanna says the poem is the key to finding the vault.

Elliot gets the comedy MVP of this episode for his face and possibly unintentionally for his Glenn the Savage turn at the jousting tournament. He looked as deflated as his dragon.  But I think I give Breanna and the deepening on her mentee-ship with Parker the heart of this episode.

Also I think of all the eps so far I have watched, this one felt the most like the OG episodes.  Even though this reboot is really keeping with the spirit and energy of the OG series very excellently, there was just something about this one it that felt like it could slot right in with the originals.

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Not a big fan of cosplay and less a fan of any show doing cosplay episodes so this missed every mark with me.    I kinda got bored because of it so I missed most of the jokes.   

I did like the callback to Sophie bring a bad actress when not on a con, Elliot jousting, and Breanna’s final speech but the rest of the episode was a bore. 

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This show has always been good at writing love-letters to geekdom. What a great episode - goes right into my favorites folder.

So many things to love: This case/con having some additional heft because it reminded them of Nate and his backstory. Turning Wilson into a GRR Martin lookalike (makes sense with all the card gaming) although it was clear that the real Springer had to show up. You're not going to cast French Stewart for just some photos. Wilson mentoring Parker in being a mentor. (Second time his daughter was mentioned - I'm sure nothing bad's going to happen to her in future episodes.) Glenn the Savage's impressive fight-skills, I might had to rewind that bit, complete with sword-twirling, hair-tossing and that last hero pose. Yeah, Eliot you're not a geek but you sure know how to please them. Eliot's despair at seeing Sophie getting on stage. Sophie losing her horrible stage skills the moment she switched into con mode. Breanna's heart-felt speech at the end.

Well played show - well played.

Edited by MissLucas
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More and more Sophie is blossoming as the leader of this group and I am loving it. 
 

Brianna is such a wonderful addition and I wasn’t sure I would be open to her cause I love Hardison and the core group but I love how she’s is the newer viewers stand in. I also love that the writers aren’t *trying* to make us like her. Other shows would have her be vastly better then hardison and making him look dumb to prop her up, but she doesn’t need propping. She’s just as smart and her individual talents make her a stand out. Plus she makes mistakes and learns and the others love and appreciate her for her. I love how they brought her in. 
 

and she made me cry at her speech. It brings up my emotions about fandom and all the beautiful things that come with it. 
 

the villain reminds me of the guy who bought the company that makes insulin and price scourged and I just wish there was a scene where he got punched in the face. 

I love how Sophie is still a bad bad actress till she’s working a con. That bit will never get old 

 

Edited by moonorchid
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28 minutes ago, moonorchid said:

the villain reminds me of the guy who bought the company that makes insulin and price scourged and I just wish there was a scene where he got punched in the face. 

He is absolutely A Martin Shkreli stand in.  The "smirk" comments were a huge clue.

And I agree about Breanna.  I had some reservations but they are writing her so well and the actress has such natural comic timing she is so fun to watch, but she can also bring gravitas really well.  The casting deserves kudos because they did a great job of picking someone who could be a 'female Hardison' and can kinda fill the space Hardison has in some of the same ways without it feeling heavy handed or desperate.

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This one was fun, and I'm guessing the filmed it at the Louisiana Renaissance Festival (I've never been there but it looks like a blast).  I liked New Guy's moments with Parker, and I hope we get to meet his daughter.  I agree that Elliot was the comedy MVP of the episode.  His face at watching Sofie' acting, I wonder if he was remembering Russian Roulette like the previous time he saw one of her performances.  And they pointed out the Pharma-bro, like Shkreli, had a very punchable face.

Breanna is fitting in well, (and I like how they never forget Hardison) but she feels like her own unique character, not just a Hardison expy.  Her speech reminded me of the days before a lot of my favorite fandoms turned toxic.

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Great episode! I agree that this was one of their stronger ones. Lots of fun, some good team moments and plenty of comic relief. Sophie's acting skills are always a treat, especially when accompanied by her teammates' reactions at having to watch her. "Oh, great..." I had flashbacks to her Lady MacBeth performances with that outfit.

Poor Eliot and his noble dragon steed 🤣 Was I the only person that somehow got Galavant vibes during the joust, for some reason? At least Eliot didn't have to resort to drugging someone with absinthe to win, though! Just a classic ye olde ass-kicking.

Breanna's speech at the end was really lovely, and enjoyed the resolution of Parker's little arc as she realized that being a mentor is a two-way street.

The mark totally had a punchy face, and I'm only sorry Eliot didn't get to punch him. (And I say this as a tree-hugging peacenik, lol).

I can't even say how happy I am this show is back!

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I loved this! It felt so much like classic Leverage with Sophie's acting skills kicking in when a con is involved, and even a Doctor Who reference (Bill Potts, Breanna's alias, was a companion). Elliot was great, Breanna's speech was great and the bad guy was particularly vile. The best episode so far this season. 

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I love that the isn't letting us forget Nate and Hardison.  

It's like being surrounded by Hardison's, or whatever the line was.

I thought they were going to turn the assistant who was responsible for that guy's success, but I guess the money was worth taking a back seat and any misgivings he might have had. Maybe he couldn't be cruel enough to run the company and ruin lives, but he was fine with doing it remotely.

Elliot in the blow-up dragon..why don't they have to wear one?  Funny.  His victory pose was epic.

Like someone said, Sophie is becoming the leader.  I'm a little surprised Parker isn't too upset by that. She's been in charge for quite awhile and she didn't seem overwhelmed or tired of the job.  I guess I'm just glad they didn't make Harry the leader.  

Trying to remember, but hasn't Harry's parts in the cons been blown or usurped or changed midstream a few times?  The real guy showed up this time, he gets recognized and they have to change his role, and he couldn't control his feeling to finish a con?

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I suppose they wouldn't've had the budget for staging a jousting match with actual horses, but given Eliot's experience as a rider I got my hopes up. Equine involvement is always my favorite part of RenFaire episodes (Scorpion's did it very well), so that was the only disappointment.

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On 7/14/2021 at 6:43 PM, Lugal said:

This one was fun, and I'm guessing the filmed it at the Louisiana Renaissance Festival (I've never been there but it looks like a blast).  I liked New Guy's moments with Parker, and I hope we get to meet his daughter.  I agree that Elliot was the comedy MVP of the episode.  His face at watching Sofie' acting, I wonder if he was remembering Russian Roulette like the previous time he saw one of her performances.  And they pointed out the Pharma-bro, like Shkreli, had a very punchable face.

Breanna is fitting in well, (and I like how they never forget Hardison) but she feels like her own unique character, not just a Hardison expy.  Her speech reminded me of the days before a lot of my favorite fandoms turned toxic.

That Renaissance Festival sounds awesome!

I love Sophie's bad acting. Then realizing it was part of a con and became good. 

I love the scene where they show up with a fake Springer only for the real one to show up. I actually wondered for a moment if the other guy was a fake one too. 

Eliot hating his costume and the whole thing. Springer and the crowd loving Eliot fighting the guys thinking it was all part of the show. 

Breanna did great with her speech at the end.

I did miss Hardison in this episode. You know he would have loved it. 

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No problem with me for a Pharma Boy plot. What great casting for the guy too. He really amped up the smug.

I thought 'card game' would mean casino game, so this was a neat twist. And that it was basically rock paper scissors. 

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I missed how the real Springer got the email. Breanna said they rerouted his email servers. 

A little bit contrived that he showed up. I felt they could have got to the point a little cleaner. 

I did like that Pharma bro had zero poker face and Breanna knew something was up after 30 seconds. 

Springer was kind of dumb. Why not tell Pharma Bro to walk him through the quest for the vault? 

 

Edited by DoctorAtomic
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On 7/14/2021 at 8:43 PM, Lugal said:

Breanna is fitting in well, (and I like how they never forget Hardison) but she feels like her own unique character, not just a Hardison expy. 

They are doing an amazing job of making her a completely different character from Hardison though filling the Hardison slot on the team. I was worried they were just going to basically write her as Hardison but just with a different name. Hardison's shoes are pretty hard to fill (I LOVE HIM!!!!!!) but Breanna is doing a great job of subbing for him without trying to be him. 

 

On 7/15/2021 at 5:43 PM, Johann said:

Trying to remember, but hasn't Harry's parts in the cons been blown or usurped or changed midstream a few times?  The real guy showed up this time, he gets recognized and they have to change his role, and he couldn't control his feeling to finish a con?

I like this little detail. Harry was a lawyer before this. He's not a professional con nor did he chase thieves the way Nate did (Nate tried to think like the people he was chasing which would have given him more of an edge on being Mastermind, though I was still annoyed at how "right" he was all the time). Harry knows how to manipulate the law but not how to pull a con or pretend to be someone else, so he's bound to fuck it up. I also enjoy watching them have to scramble when something goes wrong. It shows just how well they work together as a team when they manage to pull it off. 

It makes a bit more sense that Breanna is doing better at it, since she grew up with Hardison and seems to idolize him so would have practiced and studied to be like him. 

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10 minutes ago, Mabinogia said:

I like this little detail. Harry was a lawyer before this.

I think Harry losing it in the one about the apartment tower was a bit much, but the show set up that he was involved in the other building collapse cover up. I'll give the show credit for keeping a reasonable context.

He should be rough. When it comes to lawyering, he's polished and knows what he's doing. 

I'm surprised for working on a big law firm that he isn't recognized more. 

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5 minutes ago, DoctorAtomic said:

I think Harry losing it in the one about the apartment tower was a bit much, but the show set up that he was involved in the other building collapse cover up. I'll give the show credit for keeping a reasonable context.

I do think it was a case of his guilt getting the best of him. I can just imagine the voice in his head screaming "SHUT UP DUDE!!!!!" while he went on his little diatribe and him knowing he shouldn't be saying any of this but just not being able to control it. I think he thought he could handle it, from all those years of being a lawyer, but it was too close to home for him. 

Maybe if that con had happened further down the road he might have handled it better.

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3 hours ago, Mabinogia said:

I do think it was a case of his guilt getting the best of him. I can just imagine the voice in his head screaming "SHUT UP DUDE!!!!!"

The actor is good enough to pull that off. I'd lay more on the director (which might have been him) to get that across better. 

I'm talking the difference between a B/B+ though. It didn't ruin the episode. 

I think the agreement here, which is correct, is that Harry isn't a polished grifter, and shouldn't be. 

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On 7/24/2021 at 5:32 PM, DoctorAtomic said:

I'm surprised for working on a big law firm that he isn't recognized more. 

Especially since they're doing a lot of the cons in the NOLA area, which is where he was based as a lawyer to a lot of these slimy people.  I wasn't a big watcher of the original but didn't they move around quite a bit?

Edited by Irlandesa
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17 minutes ago, Irlandesa said:

Especially since they're doing a lot of the cons in the NOLA area, which is where he was based as a lawyer to a lot of these slimy people.  I wasn't a big watcher of the original but didn't they move around quite a bit?

The original pilot was set in Chicago, the rest of the first season was in LA, then Boston for 3 seasons, and Portland Oregon for the last. But, they did often have jobs not in the same city or even state that they were based in.

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5 hours ago, MargeGunderson said:

The original pilot was set in Chicago, the rest of the first season was in LA, then Boston for 3 seasons, and Portland Oregon for the last. But, they did often have jobs not in the same city or even state that they were based in.

Or in other countries like the Stork Job in Belgrade, London in the King George Job, the fictional country of San Lorenzo, which ever Caribbean island that was the emerald of the Caribbean with a volcano, and whatever they were doing in Laos that Hardison apparently attempted to play a country boy and Japan in the Broken Wing.

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On 7/13/2021 at 6:06 PM, MissLucas said:

So many things to love: This case/con having some additional heft because it reminded them of Nate and his backstory

I also loved this. And that they didn't take the time to really explain everything in great detail to new viewers. There was enough to know this job had extra weight, just not specifically why.

On 7/14/2021 at 8:43 PM, Lugal said:

I liked New Guy's moments with Parker, and I hope we get to meet his daughter.

Me too. Or at least learn more about her. If she's younger, I'm guessing mom has custody but does she live in town? Does he get to see her often? Did his change of heart change their relationship?

On 7/15/2021 at 5:43 PM, Johann said:

I thought they were going to turn the assistant who was responsible for that guy's success, but I guess the money was worth taking a back seat and any misgivings he might have had. Maybe he couldn't be cruel enough to run the company and ruin lives, but he was fine with doing it remotely.

I was expecting that too, early on, but he really didn't appear to feel any remorse for what he was helping his 'friend' do. I hope he ended up arrested too. And that everyone in the game community finds out what he did and ostracizes him (the drug company stuff was definitely the worst but being so eager to betray his own people was pretty ugly too).

On 7/21/2021 at 8:36 AM, andromeda331 said:

I love the scene where they show up with a fake Springer only for the real one to show up

I particularly loved Eliot's yank of Harry to get him off-screen. Harry is really not good at reacting to anything unexpected and was just standing there.

On 7/21/2021 at 9:10 PM, DoctorAtomic said:

I missed how the real Springer got the email. Breanna said they rerouted his email servers. 

He didn't get the email. Cordozar's tech guy built an algorithm to track Springer down. He mentions it as an aside as they're all heading into Cordozar's office.

On 7/21/2021 at 9:10 PM, DoctorAtomic said:

Springer was kind of dumb. Why not tell Pharma Bro to walk him through the quest for the vault? 

He did, originally, but then Pharma Bro decided winning the contest would count instead for some reason (he wouldn't have wanted anyone else near the vault but I'm not sure why he thought Springer would go along with that). And then he and Springer switched to "I'll agree to sell if you have the magic card" which I didn't really get. 

On 7/24/2021 at 6:32 PM, DoctorAtomic said:

I'm surprised for working on a big law firm that he isn't recognized more. 

Me too. And that more people haven't heard that he left the firm and rumors about why which would put them on guard.

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Did anyone else notice this episode had characters named Carter and Lucy? A nod to Noah’s days on ER, perhaps? 

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On 7/31/2021 at 8:21 AM, Claire85 said:

Did anyone else notice this episode had characters named Carter and Lucy? A nod to Noah’s days on ER, perhaps? 

Frankly, I hope not.  Noah has talked publicly about how he owes Kellie Martin a big apology because he treated her very badly during her stint on ER.  I would be annoyed to think he was trying to trade off it now.

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It might not have been his idea, though.  Writers like to throw in things like that just for fun and see who catches it, but they might not know anything about the history involved.

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On 7/20/2021 at 8:54 PM, rejnel said:

WTF is a black cappucino?

I had to rewind and watch that a few times.  "Cappuccino,  black."  You mean an espresso?  Because basically he's saying espresso with steamed milk and foamed milk,  only without the  milk.

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Another fun one. Sorry to bump up every thread as I watch the episode but I really liked this one. One minor flaw (not sure if it matters) is that if Breanna was such a fan would someone know her? As a huge HP fan, I knew people who knew people who were like that. They'd walk into a room and other fans knew who they were. Of course that may not be a flaw as so what. From the average fan if they did recognize her it wouldn't be weird as she always goes and finishes high in the tournamentt.

Elliot was the funniest part of the episode I loved his fight and the plastic dragon. Then of course he's reaction when realized Sophie will "act". Of course her change of performance when it became important to the con was great :).

Edited by blueray
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That was her first time at the Fair, so maybe not. Though I take the point if she's active online that they might know her. It would be like here, if we went to a con, no one really knows who the other is unless we say our nicknames. We don't post our pictures here. I can handwave she's good enough to keep her online footprints clean, or just flat out lie about her online presence. 

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On 8/30/2021 at 6:42 PM, blueray said:

Of course her change of performance when it became important to the con was great :).

That's one of the things I love about the reboot. The way they remember details about each character and show they remember. But not beating you over the head with it like in other shows or reboots. The reaction to Sophie doing the reading badly, until she realizes its part of the con and you see the switch in Sophie. She starts doing very well. It was so perfectly in character with Sophie. 

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I really don't remember the original show being this "ripped from the headlines." Undecided if that's good or bad. 

Breanna got to shine this episode nerding out over Spirit's Ruse. I don't think every episode has to focus on one of her interests but she was much more included into the storyline like when she first did the EDM concert. 

They got a great actor to do that condescending grin. He was a little one-note rich kid bully but the dynamic his loyal sidekick Carter helped balance it out. And of course there was French Stewart to back them up. I don't need them to get Meryl Streep or anything but the show works so much better with some solid TV actors involved in the case of the week.

I loved the medieval fantasy gown they put Sophie in. Those sleeves!

lol, Elliot should get a cheering crowd for some of his fights

This didn't feel like the most exciting episode of the original series but it did feel more like the original series.

Harry's daughter is DEFINITELY going to be relevant to a future episode.

LOL, I love Sophie's bad acting. And Elliot's reactions before really primed the audience to remember it. It was a nice twist that she was able to recite it well when she was focused on the con again.

I knew swale fever sounded familiar. It's the disease they gave Leighton Meester on House MD

I did think that Carter was going to be the real Spirit's Ruse fan and that they'd somehow get him on their side but it was better that it became Breanna's quest. Her speech did get to me. It was a little weird that Carter accomplished everything with algorithms and not any real love of the mythology of the game... yet he knew enough about the lore to find the vault and program an algorithm to calculate odds in the game. 

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I missed how the real Springer got the email. Breanna said they rerouted his email servers. 

Punchable Face's plan was to just send an email. Carter (the assistant) used an algorithm to actually locate Springer. Direct to the source, no email required.

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I'm surprised for working on a big law firm that he isn't recognized more. 

I feel like this is the weakest part of the cons taking place in Harry's home town. It's fine when he's being a lawyer or using his membership to get them into the gun club but otherwise, he should be recognized all the time. 

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He did, originally, but then Pharma Bro decided winning the contest would count instead for some reason (he wouldn't have wanted anyone else near the vault but I'm not sure why he thought Springer would go along with that). And then he and Springer switched to "I'll agree to sell if you have the magic card" which I didn't really get. 

I think Pharma Bro was just betting he could do enough to charm Springer by winning and showing him the card that he'd forget about walking him through the steps of the quest. It was, after all, a business deal. I think that was a side benefit to Sophie and Elliot keeping him distracted. He remembered what he loved about the world he created and spent the day surrounded by people who loved it as well. His disillusioned self made a last attempt to just sell the company when Breanna gave her speech that tipped him over into caring again. 

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That was her first time at the Fair, so maybe not.

She told Carter that she'd been 3 times. I don't know if she was speaking as her "character" or Breanna in that moment. Still, I don't know that people recognizing her would have affected the plot. 

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