one of my favorite running gags in leverage is Sophie’s Terrible Acting and on rewatching the stork job, it’s really funny. because it’s the first time it’s come up since the nigerian job, and the ot3 are watching from the background as nate tries to talk to sophie about it and they all pace/bow their heads/hold hands in a questioning pose when nate completely folds
which is especially funny because they’ve been working together for at least six jobs by this point, trusting sophie to be their grifter because they’ve seen how good she is, but in that moment they’re all flashing back to COME YOU SPIRITS THAT TEND ON MORTAL THOUGHTS, UNSEX ME HERE!
I think my favorite thing about Leverage is that Parker had possibly the hardest, most scarring childhood/past of anyone in the group (she was labeled “insane” at the beginning of episode 1) and yet she was able to overcome everything, including her insistence to work alone because she has finally found a group of people who she can work efficiently with. In the end, she’s with a group of people who truly care about her, and is an essentially functional member of society despite most likely being mentally ill.
I love that Hardison’s very obvious feelings for Parker are accompanied by unwavering patience.
Like, I think back to him referring to Parker’s “sexiness” to Nate in the SECOND EPISODE of the series and how he says “just between us”, like he’s not going to shower her with adoration and sweet nothings at almost every turn between them, I think about how he tells her that he likes how she turned out when she’s crying her eyes out, broken, knowing she’s different and weird and possibly even a lost cause at this point, I think about how from the moment he met her, he was already interested and how her quirks - while sometimes frustrating - never pushed/scared him away, I think about how he spends three seasons being a major leg and arm and lung in her growing support system and when she finally DOES tell him that she’s been having “feelings [for pretzels]”, he just smiles even though his heart is probably in his throat at this overwhelming progress they’ve made and he sits down and tells her kindly, lovingly, that they’re there when she’s ready to have them.
He will always be there when she is ready for him.
I caved and am starting a rewatch of Leverage. Barely 10 minutes into the first episode and it’s such a surreal feeling. The core of each character is solidly there, but Hardison in particular is putting off this really weird bravado / player vibe and I’m just like “Oh Hardison, baby, you don’t need to put on an act for them. You’ll know soon enough.” Also Eliot’s hair is kinda blonde? That’s weird.
Also there’s a part where Nate mentions all his plan / contingencies and there’s one where Hardison dies, and that comes back in a later episode and man I’m going to love the chance to find these throwbacks.
Hardison, friend, why are you pointing a gun at Eliot? That attitude doesn’t suit you at all. But you and Parker smiling at each other after pickpocketing the doctors is good. (Also, Parker, your grifting skills really do need some work. Just you wait.)
Eliot’s delivery is so perfect. He’s got this sarcasm, and the defensive humility that’s practically his trademark (the “distinctive” delivery of his, it first shows up when he takes down the guards and stares down Hardison going “this is what I do”), but he’s got this constant rage going under it. And he clearly thinks the others are off their rockers, but he doesn’t let himself appear soft yet. But then he’s grifting as an IT guy and he’s clearly poking fun at Hardison with this Star Trek bit. Shameless fave Eliot Spencer everyone, man of many talents who obfuscates his soft side so very well but it glows when he lets it.
Wait. Sophie’s opening performance in the theater, ISN’T THIS THE SAME SOLILOQUY FROM THE FINALE??? And this first interaction between her and Nate is pure. gold.
Have I talked about how dang insightful Eliot is? His conversation with Nate over the pool game is incredible.
The character development in this episode alone is impressive. Fast paced team development is a beautiful thing.
And I’m going to leave this rambling reaction here and give the climax my undivided attention because there is some fiiine manipulations to appreciate.