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ottoDbusdriver

S01.E05: The Shepherds and the Fox

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Eduardo Sánchez (The Blair Witch Project) directed the first four episodes; Daniel Stamm (13 Sins, The Last Exorcism) is directing the back half.

We got a lot of information this episode:

Amy is Rose Gilchrist.

Everyone has two souls, but most people live & die never knowing about their other soul. We've all been here before, and we'll all be back again.

Jack & Gary went to high school with Donna, who committed suicide in Episode 1.

Something bad happened to Richard Shepherd's brother.

Edited to add a link to the Entertainment Weekly recap, "This Old Murder House": http://community.ew.com/2014/09/20/intruders-recap-the-shepherds-and-the-fox/

Edited by editorgrrl

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First off, what an incredible waste of Robert Forster (who played Frank) -- he had a grand total of about 15 minutes of screen time over 5 episodes, and then they kill him off.  Bah !! That's frustrating, I was hoping we would see more of him, or at least more of his story.

 

And if you didn't get the message already, the number 9 is supposed to be really, really important in this show as it shows up everywhere. The flashback to open the episode is 9 years ago.  Jack goes to meet Rose at Pier 9.  Rose's hotel room number is 909.  We get it already, a little explanation of why it is important might be helpful 5 episodes into a 8 episode series.

 

I'm actually disappointed that Madison/Marcus killed Larry.  Here's a guy just renovating his home, and some ignorant kid barges in to use his phone. Larry seemed like a nice enough guy -- I wonder if his realtor told him that was a murder house before he bought it.  Larry discovers that she is a missing child and gives his contact info to her parents and offers to feed her/watch her until they show up, and Madison/Marcus kills him for basically being helpful. Fuck you Madison/Marcus !!

 

And that scene where Madison/Marcus just pretends to be a little girl with a gun pointed at her by Shepherd and somehow manages to knock Shepherd down and escape is completely ridiculous (can I have a hug ?  WTF ?).  This is followed by Madison/Marcus stealing Shepherd's car and crashing it a few blocks down the street.  Madison/Marcus sitting on what has to be a booster seat so that she can see over the steering wheel is laughably bad.

 

Gary's character has been badly written -- Gary has basically been acting completely normal up until this episode, but then confesses that he went to Bill Anderson's house, was exposed to the ghost machine, and can now see dark souls in peoples bodies.  He proceeds to rant about how everyone has 2 souls in them (huh ?? everyone ??) including his daughter, and that he tried to shake the dark soul out of his daughter and injured her (that's just creepy).  Gary is convinced that his daughter has the soul of the girl that died in the first episode (Donna) which just seems like a really forced retcon.  Despite the fact that Gary discovered that he can see dark souls and abused his daughter and lost his job months ago, he has acted completely normal up until this episode -- which makes absolutely no sense.  He was basically catatonic by the end of the episode.

 

Here's my WTF question of the episode -- why wasn't Gary Fisher seen in the restaurant after the murder of Bill Anderson.  Jack is being interviewed, but Gary is just gone -- why wasn't Gary being interviewed by the cops ?  That makes no sense, he was a witness to a murder.  Sure Gary was a little rattled by the shooting, but he also called 911, I would think they would want to talk to him. 

 

What did we learn this episode ?  Aside from confirmation that the actress playing Madison/Marcus still can't act, not much. 
And the big surprise that Amy is actually Rose -- not really that surprising since we knew SOMEONE was inhabiting Amy, but just didn't know who.

 

5 episodes in and we still don't know how all this soul/ghost transferance works or why.  Particularly, why would a clandestine organization of old ghosts allow a serial killer/pedophile like Marcus to be continually brought back ?

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First off, what an incredible waste of Robert Forster (who played Frank) -- he had a grand total of about 15 minutes of screen time over 5 episodes, and then they kill him off. Bah !! That's frustrating, I was hoping we would see more of him, or at least more of his story.

Here's my WTF question of the episode -- why wasn't Gary Fisher seen in the restaurant after the murder of Bill Anderson. Jack is being interviewed, but Gary is just gone -- why wasn't Gary being interviewed by the cops ? That makes no sense, he was a witness to a murder. Sure Gary was a little rattled by the shooting, but he also called 911, I would think they would want to talk to him.

100% speculation (I haven't read the book), but the last time I compared this show to another piece of pop culture someone complained:

I thought Jack had a Fight Club revelation—Gary is the other soul in Jack's body.

Richard Shepherd told Frank Shepherd that since the Qui Reverti believe we've all been here before & we'll all be back again, Richard shooting Frank wouldn't change anything. So Robert Forster may be back. (Hey, there's always flashbacks.)

Until this episode I thought "Shepherd" was just a job title. But Frank talked to Richard like a father to a son. And he mentioned Richard's brother—another Shepherd?

Edited by editorgrrl

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Richard Shepherd told Jack Shepherd that since the Qui Reverti believe we've all been here before & we'll all be back again, Richard shooting Jack wouldn't change anything.

Until this episode I thought "Shepherd" was just a job title. But Jack talked to Richard like a father to a son. And he mentioned another Shepherd, Richard's brother.

 

Isn't Jack's last name Whelan ?

 

I thought the two Shepherds mentioned in the episode title referred to Frank and Richard -- they both seem to NOT be inhabited by a dark soul, but are in the employment of the Reverti (Rose et al).  Plus, they mentioned that Frank recruited Richard into working for the group.  Who knows for sure ?

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Thanks for the catch! I meant Frank Shepherd, not Jack. I've edited my post accordingly. Sorry for the confusion.

There had been speculation that Jack Whelan was Amy's shepherd, but this episode's revelations seem to have disproven that.

Edited to add that according to Gary, every single person on earth is born with two souls. Only a small number of the second souls are ever activated. But every soul (primary or secondary) has been here before and will be back again.

Edited by editorgrrl

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100% speculation (I haven't read the book), but the last time I compared this show to another piece of pop culture someone complained:

That was my thought upon watching this episode. Will be interesting to see if it proves true and where the show goes with it if true.

What a colossal waste of Robert Forester.

Truly hate Madison/Marcus.

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Yes Madison running round killing everyone is idiotic and dull. Felt bad for loft guy too. At first I was shocked at how he was talking to her then realized he didn't know she was missing just thought she was obnoxious. As soon as he knew, he changed.

Although when she said shower and shave it should have been obvious she's crazy, abnormal child so call the police.

I don't understand about two souls. Since ever? Why? Why only two, not ten? And why are they all evil?

Is it true of cats and dogs too?

I'm enjoying this a lot more than when it started but now at the exposition is coming fear it's kinda silly,

Reminds me of The Historian, a great, creepy book but when you realize Dracula just wants a librarian... It's kind of dumb

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I don't understand about two souls. Since ever? Why? Why only two, not ten? And why are they all evil?

Everyone has always had two souls, but we're only consciously aware of one.

Qui Reverti is nine nefarious people (at least one of whom is a woman) who hundreds of years ago found a way to "activate" the second soul. They pay Shepherds to find them (how, I haven't a clue), activate them, and remind them of their identity.

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Wow, that was a great episode.  I continue to really love this show.

 

Something bad happened to Richard Shepherd's brother

I think I missed this?  Reason to re-watch!  But also, what did I miss?

 

And if you didn't get the message already, the number 9 is supposed to be really, really important in this show as it shows up everywhere. The flashback to open the episode is 9 years ago.  Jack goes to meet Rose at Pier 9.  Rose's hotel room number is 909.  We get it already, a little explanation of why it is important might be helpful 5 episodes into a 8 episode series.

It's a mystery what the number 9 has to do with it all.  Why is this a problem?  Seems like the kind of mystery that may not be revealed in full until the season or series finale.  And that makes sense to me. I guess this is personal preference, but i'm happy to have shows like this that aren't spoon feeding everything.  

Overall I think that was a good episode and really advanced the plot. I'm very interested in picking up the book after the season.

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Rather than outright denial, Richard asked Frank "Why would I have helped Marcus Fox?" Frank gave several possible motivations, including something along the lines of "what happened to your brother."

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It's a mystery what the number 9 has to do with it all.  Why is this a problem?  Seems like the kind of mystery that may not be revealed in full until the season or series finale.  And that makes sense to me. I guess this is personal preference, but i'm happy to have shows like this that aren't spoon feeding everything.

 

True enough, however, as someone who was really kind of pissed that the numbers on 'Lost' were never resolved after over 140 episodes, I'd like a hint or a little bit of info regarding what '9' means and why it is so damn important.  It's not just symbols scattered everywhere, there is something else going on with regards to what 9 represents. 

 

Remember when Madison was in the train station and the station clock struck 9 then Marcus suddenly took over -- that can't be a coincidence.

Is it some kind of programming in the 2nd soul ?  If so, who programmed it ?

Edited by ottoDbusdriver

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Remember when Madison was in the train station and the station clock struck 9 then Marcus suddenly took over -- that can't be a coincidence.

Is it some kind of programming in the 2nd soul ?  If so, who programmed it ?

 

These are legitimate questions. And we certainly don't want this to turn into Lost where some things never get answered.  Though I sort of like that too because in real life, many things go unanswered. So I tend to dislike when shows answer all of them. We are getting some answers though.  Like you note, we know that 9 triggers some key events.  I wonder if it also relates to what they said about certain locations having a greater ability to break through with the suppressed souls?  Like, some weird longitudinal thing. 

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But WHy does everyone have two souls? I don't get it. What happens to the soul when the other one takes over? How can they have these weird arbitrary rules if it's something that's true for everyone?

And the idea that a person has to be possessed to be a prodigy strikes me as laughably silly.

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I wonder if it also relates to what they said about certain locations having a greater ability to break through with the suppressed souls?  Like, some weird longitudinal thing.

 

That would imply that there is some physical connection between the ghosts/souls/whatever and the planet, some sort of geographical/geophysical connection component or possible relation to the Earth's magnetic field or gravitational pull (which does vary across the planet).

 

Qui Reverti is nine nefarious people (at least one of whom is a woman) who hundreds of years ago found a way to "activate" the second soul. They pay Shepherds to find them (how, I haven't a clue), activate them, and remind them of their identity.

 

Are we sure that there are only 9 of these activated souls ?  Or are only 9 souls allowed to be activated at any time (and that's why Marcus being a 10th soul activated is causing problems ?).  And why only 9 ?

 

But WHy does everyone have two souls? I don't get it. What happens to the soul when the other one takes over? How can they have these weird arbitrary rules if it's something that's true for everyone?

 

Damn good question -- why two souls ?  Is 3 too confusing (as Richard mentioned that might be the cause of schiophrenia) ?  What happens when someone is only born with one soul ?  Or zero souls ?   Dun, dun, dun, dun !!!

 

Assuming it's 2 souls to a person (heck, why not ?), when someone is born do they have one newly created soul (someone called it the primary soul upthread, which works for me) and one old soul.  How is that old soul transferred into the newborn ?  It has to be an automatic process if EVERYONE has two souls, and should make it pretty random.

 

So when Gary says his baby daughter has the dark soul of a girl that he new in a different city 16 years ago that seems too specific to be random, almost like someone is controlling the soul transfer process.

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I'd like to know what the significance of the number 9 and its variations as well. According to numerology, the number 9 takes over like a body snatcher when one does various calculations, like 6x9=54 and 5+4=9. The explanation goes on to say any number, no matter how large, reduces to 9. Rose/Amy's hotel room = 909, 9+9=18, 1+8=9. That may be what they're saying here.

Gary's sudden change of character was weird. His being left go at his job happened before he contacted Jack so why wasn't he like this from the start? If he believes we all have 2 souls, doesn't he wonder about his hidden one?

The scenes with Madison/Marcus are either creepy or weird. So he likes to down a bottle of alcohol in the shower? I was actually looking forward to Shepherd shooting him and hoping he wouldn't fall for the can I have a hug routine. The getaway looked ridiculous. Now let's see if Madison's parents show up at that house and somehow meet the detective from the beginning of the episode who looks like knows what happened to Marcus.

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Yes and if that soul takes OVER what happens to the one that was already there? I mean the other one of the two. It seems they are implanting souls but if people are born with two doesn't that mean putting in a third.

And seriously was shepherd only considering for the first time that being a body snatcher might be morally reprehensible? This is also laughable.

The rules about not returning to a place you knew or seeing loved ones... Who made up these rules?

And whats the point really if you can't go on I with a life you knew, isn't it just the same as being reincarnated without knowing it?

I just don't see whats in he his for them except money of course, but it seems some already had money.

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Intruders executive producer Glen Morgan answers viewer questions, including:

 

  • How are the host bodies chosen for the Intruders?
  • Why are birthdays so significant to Intruders?
  • Richard spends the episode offing people with his gun. But Amy says, “We don’t really die.” So aren’t his actions futile?
  • How are the Shepherds picked?
  • Why is the nine symbolic?
  • Are the intruders reincarnated into these new bodies and awakening with an ensuing crisis of identity, or are they like spirits possessing entirely separate people?
Edited by editorgrrl
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Ok the answers are interesting but it still makes no sense. So I thougt qui reverts souls would randomly hip into another body and never wake in? Whats the point of that??

And offing the reverti is also killing the host. Has nobody noticed that?? Madison may be hosting Marcus but she's ALSO a little girl.

Who will also be reborn into another body?

What about when people die and it's not a multiple of 9? Do both souls go out looking? Why don't two souls jump into a body? Do they ever fight for one?

It's all a little absurd...

And if a soul never wakes up though it's dormant... Isn't that the same as... You know... Death?

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Ok the answers are interesting but it still makes no sense. So I thougt qui reverts souls would randomly hip into another body and never wake in? Whats the point of that??

And offing the reverti is also killing the host. Has nobody noticed that?? Madison may be hosting Marcus but she's ALSO a little girl.

Who will also be reborn into another body?

So if what Gary says is true, the soul of the girl he knew in high school is reborn in her daughter, what happened to the soul that was reawakened in her that caused her to commit suicide? Is it in someone else? When Gary said we've all been here before, what about the 'original' soul like Madison, Amy ,etc. have they lived before? This is getting confusing. Edited by Cobb Salad

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And offing the reverti is also killing the host. Has nobody noticed that?? Madison may be hosting Marcus but she's ALSO a little girl.

Who will also be reborn into another body?

I think that's the point behind Shepherd's hesitation to kill her.  He has hesitated at least twice now to kill "Marcus" for this very reason.  I think it was the pilot on the beach when it was clearly Madison and not Marcus whose presence was dominant.  He wasn't 100% sure that Marcus had successfully been awakened.  The second time was in this episode in that house which is how Marcus gets away. Something about shooting the little girl is giving him pause.

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Intruders executive producer Glen Morgan has answered viewer questions at http://www.bbcameric...qa-glen-morgan/

 

It would have been INCREDIBLY helpful if any or all of that info was distributed throughout the episodes.  It took 5 episodes and even then we (the audience) were never really sure what the hell was going on -- souls/ghosts/aliens/alien ghosts/whatever.

 

I agree with @lucindabelle, even knowing this information a lot of it still doesn't make any sense.  There has been no mention of 'The Adjourn'.  Did Bill Anderson's machine only detect the 2nd soul ?  And, yeah, the return placement is not random in a planet of 7 billion+ if your daughter contains the soul of someone you have known.

 

All the 9 symbolism makes about as much sense as the number 23 did in the movie 'The Number 23' (which was just awful).

Why didn't they go with 12 instead -- 12 months in a year, 2x12 hours in a day, 5x12 minutes in an hour -- makes about as much sense.

 

Knowing that 9 is so important, why don't hosts have 9 souls in them ?  Why are there only 9 soft spots on Earth ?  

 

From the article:

 

"Also, there are nine areas on Earth where it is easier to cross over from the living to the dead and back. The Puget Sound area is one of these locations."

 

One for each continent and a couple of spares.

 

But apparently all the souls cross over and back at some time, so if everyone everywhere has 2 souls, they don't all go to these 9 soft spots to pick up a 2nd soul when a baby is born.  All these souls (in the billions) have to cross back everywhere at anytime.

Edited by ottoDbusdriver
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I'm with this guy: http://www.threeifbyspace.net/2014/09/intruders-105-the-shepherds-and-the-fox-review-by-any-other-name/

[W]ith Intruders the only thing you can be sure of is when it airs. All other bets are off in this crazy show that loves to blindside you, then toss more questions at you. But hey, I’ve got to at least make some guesses, that’s half the fun of watching.

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Regarding Gary's personality change, before he left to go listen to Rose's room door, Jack picks up and examines a prescription pill bottle. He then uses the bottle to prop open the room door. It's possible Gary, in order to gain Jack's trust, was on his meds during their time together. Then, after the shooting, he stopped taking them. One other thing about this episode, initially Jack tells Amy he is staying at her regular hotel and more or less what room. I was expecting him later hear that there had been some sort of 'accident' in the that room and the occupant killed.

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So, is Shepherd a name or a profession/title? Was Frank related to Richard or just his mentor? And yet Richard's brother is mentioned... Are shepherds recruited from a family named Shepherd? (That's not as wacky as it first seems when you consider that many surnames reflect the profession of an ancestor. Maybe the Reverti and Shepherds have been at this a lot longer than a few centuries.) OK, I'm still confused, but I'll put that aside and keep watching. It's getting more interesting for me.

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So, is Shepherd a name or a profession/title? Was Frank related to Richard or just his mentor? And yet Richard's brother is mentioned... Are shepherds recruited from a family named Shepherd? (That's not as wacky as it first seems when you consider that many surnames reflect the profession of an ancestor. Maybe the Reverti and Shepherds have been at this a lot longer than a few centuries.) OK, I'm still confused, but I'll put that aside and keep watching. It's getting more interesting for me.

 

 

From the Q&A with Intruders executive producer Glen Morgan linked above:

How are the Shepherds picked? – Marisa Aguilar

 

GM: Hopefully you are not looking for a job with the Shepherds, Marisa, as Shepherds are people in search of a second chance and Qui Reverti has offered it to them.

 

Shepherds begin as troubled young men and women who have taken a life. They are approached by Reverti and made an offer. Reverti will cover up the murder, then, in exchange for a lifetime of service to Qui Reverti, performing the dirty work of assassinations and cleaning, the Shepherd will be welcomed into Qui Reverti and triggered in the next life with a chance at a better life; a reboot.

 

Shepherds are trained by other Shepherds, as Richard has interned with Frank. Some Shepherds, like Richard, question why Reverti is allowed to keep the secret. Some Shepherds try to get around the rules. This is very dangerous as Shepherds police and take care of their own.

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So, is Shepherd a name or a profession/title? Was Frank related to Richard or just his mentor? And yet Richard's brother is mentioned... Are shepherds recruited from a family named Shepherd? (That's not as wacky as it first seems when you consider that many surnames reflect the profession of an ancestor. Maybe the Reverti and Shepherds have been at this a lot longer than a few centuries.) OK, I'm still confused, but I'll put that aside and keep watching. It's getting more interesting for me.

 

It's like the library detective on Seinfeld being called 'Bookman'.  In this case, Richard Shepherd just happens to 'conveniently' be a soul shepherd. </snark>

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It's like the library detective on Seinfeld being called 'Bookman'. In this case, Richard Shepherd just happens to 'conveniently' be a soul shepherd. </snark>

I think riley702's question was totally valid. As I said upthread:

Until this episode I thought "Shepherd" was just a job title. But Frank talked to Richard like a father to a son. And he mentioned Richard's brother—another Shepherd?

According to the Q&A, executive producer Glen Morgan expects viewers to grok that Frank Shepherd was Richard Shepherd's mentor. But at least two of us were confused. The question is, is that our fault—or the writers'?

Edited to add: I think it's definitely the latter. Viewers should be able to understand the show solely from watching—without having to read interviews with TPTB.

Edited by editorgrrl
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A colorful Sixth Sense–style clue:

For a while now, Qui Reverti members have been name-dropping Rose in almost every conversation. Just to make sure we're aware of how key she is, costume and set designers have thrown bits of red into almost every scene involving a Reverti member (think Madison's backpack).

 

The same review notes something else I missed. In Marcus Fox's house, 

[Detectives] find more decayed bodies, including one holding a photo booth strip of pictures featuring the murderer himself and Donna, the very first character we met in the first episode, who killed herself and left a note for Gary Fischer!

 

When Rose told Frank Shepherd to find someone "off the books," did she mean Bix Beiderbecke (her jazzy lost love)?

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[Detectives] find more decayed bodies, including one holding a photo booth strip of pictures featuring the murderer himself and Donna, the very first character we met in the first episode, who killed herself and left a note for Gary Fischer!

 

I don't think that photo strip with that body was pictures of Donna, the woman in the photos had red hair for starters and her face was different -- Donna's hair was much darker. Each body under the floorboards was clutching an object in its hands, probably the activator for the 2nd soul in that body -- one was clutching a watch, another had a glass bottle, another had a small round jewelery box, and one was clutching a strip of photos, 

 

Frank and Richard looked nearly the exact same as they do in present day as they did 24 years previously when they activated Donna.  How is that possible ?

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There is something fundamentally wrong with a show needing a detailed FAQ by its 5th episode. What a failure of storytelling. Which is frustrating because there's a lot of cool shit in this story. I mean I'm grateful he decided to share that info with us, but I for one will not read it. If the story can't make itself comprehensible* to me on its own legs, then.... I don't know what but it's not good. 

 

* Note that I say comprehensible. Not interesting or entertaining. It doesn't matter if it's good or not if you can't figure out what the fuck is going on, on a really basic level. 

 

 

 

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You said it perfectly. Now that I know more of whats going on I'm more interested but it took too long... And the exposition leaves me questioning he sense.

I do enjoy the atmosphere...

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I'm interested in how it all got started. It must have been centuries of trial and error. Some or one of the secondary souls must have activated without a trigger, in the beginning generations.

Edited by Locutus
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