I have a confession to make: I killed Private Liebgott. I did it, in my Dad's study, with my keyboard. It all started on an innocent Monday morning, when I took my notes on Easy Company's capture of a German garrison, featured in "Day of Days." I thought Liebgott was the man shot in the head while talking to Donnie; it looked like him, it felt like him, and I never saw Liebgott again after that moment. There were a few other reasons that seemed logical, so I gulped and took the leap and proclaimed Liebgott dead. But then the scamp showed up in this episode, plus I bought the book and it confirmed the fatality was not anyone in the core Easy group we know (sort of) and love (maybe). Stupid, stupid Heathen. So I'm using the book from now on as reference material, but this show has got to start helping me out a little because I'd prefer not to kill any more war heroes. So live on, sweet Liebgott! Long may you parry and thrust.
Veteranapalooza. This week, the gang waxes reflective about fear. One man recalls being certain he'd die on D-Day. Another says his mind worked in extremes: he'd either die right away or escape unscathed from the whole thing. "I think everyone had fear," muses a third. "There's people that can handle fear....I was just as scared as anyone else, except I could think." A fourth gent relates being frightened he would somehow let down his regiment and comrades. "We all had fear, but we all had training to...try to handle fear...and work to accomplish what you're supposed to be doing," concludes a fourth man. This episode is brought to you by the letters F, E, A, and R, and by the number eighty-three, symbolizing the number of people who go nameless.
June 8, 1944, in Normandy, France. The blue sky is dotted with clouds, including one dark, stormy one and one white rabbit. No, a palm tree. No! It's a Volvo, with a kitten inside. A dirty U.S. soldier stands in a field, perfectly still, staring up at the sky as though he's not sure how in tarnation Fluffy learned to drive. Three other men cautiously approach from behind, deciding the bewildered soldier "looks like what's-his-name," and in that brief moment I feel complete kinship with their deductive reasoning, because to me, three quarters of the cast looks just like "what's-his-name" and "that one guy" and "Khaki McBaggypants." One man gently calls, "Blithe!" But young Blithe keeps staring at the sky, looking like a six-year-old lost in Wal-Mart. The group repeats his name three times before a vacant-eyed Blithe turns around, puts on his big-boy helmet, and wanders toward them in a daze. "Thought that was you," smiles Pvt. Who. "You alone?" Blithe processes this and finally nods slower than a particularly clumsy snail. "You're the first familiar faces I've seen," he breathes. Pvt. Huh says it's not surprising, given that the entire division is scattered all over the peninsula. "We've been fighting with the 502nd" regiment, Huh explains. Blithe, as if to excuse his lack of participation, stammers that he's just been trying to locate Easy Company. "Join the club," Who says. Blithe dons his gun's shoulder-strap, stares once more at the sky to check on Fluffy -- who now seems to be riding a llama -- and then follows his three comrades into the forest.