Life on Mars

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Mr. Sobell: A- | Grade It Now!
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Tuesdays With Mopey

As the '70s Cop Music cranks into high gear, Hunt barks on his bullhorn for the hostage taker to come out with his hands up. The hostage taker counters that any cop entering the premises will force him to shoot every last hostage. We appear to be at a standoff, then. What say we bring matters to a head by firing indiscriminately at the other party, then? The hostage taker complies, the cops dive for shelter, and Carling wisely yells for everyone to hold their positions. Sam decides that there's no better time to tell Annie that the hostage taker knew his first name than when the two of them are cowering in fear of an armed madman. Annie shoots Sam the "Are you kidding me?" look and Sam concedes that perhaps he's being a little self-absorbed. But he's also not looking forward to a future in a persistent vegetative state, so he decides that what's called for here is some bold, decisive, ultimately stupid and reckless action. He hands over his sidearm to Annie and runs toward the danger with his hands up. Hunt sums up what we're all thinking over his bullhorn: "Get down, you idiot." But after the hostage taker lets loose with few rounds of unfriendly fire in Sam's serpentine direction, the gunplay stops. And Sam manages to shout out that he's unarmed and would very much like to join the other hostages, please. "Cops aren't going to mess with you if you're holding on of their own, right?" Sam asks. From the look on Hunt's face, I'd say that Sam's well-being is not terribly high on the list of his concerns right now. But Michael H. is convinced: he tells Sam to come on inside -- this hostage-taking party is just getting started.

In the time it's taken ABC to sell you stuff you don't need and probably can't afford, Sam has made his way into the eerily deserted hospital and ridden the elevator up to the third floor. His wanderings take him past the watchful eye of a security camera to an empty room that has an invitingly open window. There's also a radio playing "Going to Make a Time Machine" by The Majestic Arrows, and in case the subtlety of that musical selection has escaped you, the lead singer is crooning about how he's "going to go back in the past and relive all the good times I've had." Of course, with the clock on the wall giving Sam less than three hours to take care of business, this would probably not qualify as one of those good times. Mike H. directs him to keep walking down the hall and head off to the right. That would be the Psych Ward, in case you're not familiar with the Memorial Hospital layout.

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Life on Mars

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