Life on Mars

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Mr. Sobell: B+ | Grade It Now!
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That '70s Show

Their reverie is interrupted by Hunt and the rest of the Wide Tie Brigade because a missing persons case just came in. Annie is dispatched to use her miraculous girl powers on comforting the frightened parents, and Sam is asked to join the investigatory fun. Here's the skinny: A girl named Suzy Tripper's been missing for two days, with her blouse left in the East River Park; she was eventually found strangled, with no sign of sexual assault. If that sounds eerily similar to the case Sam was working back in 2008, you and he are thinking the same thing. "Is this why I'm here?" Sam wonders aloud. "You're here to make me curse the day my father's sperm asked my mama's egg if it could have this dance," Keitel sighs. I'm with you, Keitel. Sam asks to see the body.

Suffice it to say, the morgues of 1973 do not exactly invoke CSI; they really don't even measure up to Quincy M.E.. With ash from his cigarette falling on the body, Carling points out that they pulled some prints off her shoe -- the results should be back in a few weeks if there's a match. "It's amazing what they can do these days," Skelton enthuses to an incredulous Sam. The post-mortem report indicates that this victim was not fed for at least a day before her murder -- again, another similarity to our 2008-era victim that, again, sends Sam right around the bend, much to the bemused horror of both Skelton and Carling. Skelton wonders if that crash maybe affected Sam more than he's letting on; Dr. Imperioli prescribes scotch and a stewardess. A slumping Sam looks like he's about to concede both those points -- when he happens to notice a mysterious fiber underneath the victim's fingernails. Again, if you remember that detail from Colin Raimes' reign of terror, congratulations for following along up to this point. Let's see if this commercial break can dull those deductive powers a little.

When we return, we're in one of those quaint seaside houses that dot the Atlantic shore and Sam is lying in bed with Maya. So it was all a dream -- a terrible dream. Then, into this scene of domestic bliss wanders the wizened image of Harvey Keitel -- an even more terrible dream than anyone has a right to imagine. But it's just Hunt awakening Sam from a daydream. It's very effective, too, as Sam wakes with a start -- so would you if you imagined Harvey Keitel staring down disapprovingly as you made sweet love with your beloved. Even typing that sentence has me contemplating a life of abstinence and self-denial. "This is about Maya," Sam tells Hunt. "Ma-whata?" Hunt quite reasonably replies. But Sam is undeterred -- if he can solve the crime in 1973, maybe that stops the 2008 edition of the serial killer from murdering the erstwhile Cosby Kid. It's a sound theory until you consider the fact that Sam's new co-workers are regarding him with a mixture of concern and "Get a load of this guy" sideways glances. Hey, Harvey Keitel has an idea -- why don't you make like a tree and get out of here? Annie will be happy to escort you to your new apartment, even if she doesn't look the least bit happy about doing so.

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Life on Mars

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