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August 29, 2015

Numb3rs: Power

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Jan 19th 2008 2:04PM

David Krumholtz as Charlie Eppes on Numb3rs.(S04E12) "We need simulations for our game theory algorithm to determine what our next step should be as a couple." - Charlie

Nerds in love. Awww. If I started talking that way to my girlfriend... I'd probably be sleeping on the couch. Whenever Charlie starts talking like that, all I can think of is that throaty hacking/laughing sound that Professor Frink from The Simpsons makes.

Once again, Charlie and Amita were discussing about moving in together, and once again that's all it was -- a discussion. It's old at this point and frankly, I wish they would just get it over with. I was honestly hoping for some tension when Larry asked Amita to assist on his new research project; perhaps some jealousy from Charlie. No such luck. So if they're so happy together and everything is perfect, explain to me why they aren't living together?

The only reason I'm harping on the subject is because there wasn't much else going on in this episode. The case was very typical as far as cop procedurals go. Nothing outlandish. A local police officer was using his position of authority to rape women. Terrible, yes, but certainly not a fresh idea. It played out as your would expect and the second Don and his team started investigating the LAPD, it became obvious that the suspect would end up being from a different police department.

The one thing I didn't get? The LAPD sent an internal affairs officer to assist. Once it was determined that an LAPD officer wasn't to blame, why was she still helping out? Is that normal protocol? I suppose it would have been weird for her to just disappear mid-episode though.

The one interesting thing this episode did address (in more detail than usual) was Megan's tendency to get too personally involved in a case. We found out that she had a college roommate who had been raped and it bothered Megan over the years because she didn't think she had been a good enough friend after the incident. So now she seemed determined to right that past wrong.

The highlight for the episode was her admitting to Larry that she was imagining scenarios where she had the opportunity to kill the man responsible for the recent string of victims. She had the chance too, at the end of the episode. She could have shot the guy, claimed he raised his weapon, and no one would have said anything since Megan was alone with him for a few moments.

She held off though and while I suppose it was a "feel good" ending, it would have been much better if she had shot him. That's what I really thought was going to happen. Everything about Megan (and the deep connections she makes with all her cases) was leading up to that moment. The second she goes to far. We saw it in season two of Criminal Minds when Elle hunted down and shot that guy who got away and it turned into a great story. Granted, it was the set-up that wrote Elle out of the show, but that's not what necessarily would happen on to Megan. Just some food for thought seeing as how this is the last episode of Numb3rs for now. Maybe when the show comes back, Charlie can help with the WGA negotiations and mathematically compute the best contract for everyone involved...

This week's numb3rs: 200,780 sexual assault victims, 84% unreported, 1 in 6 American women, every 2.5 minutes
This week's math: Power

Do you think Megan should have shot the guilty officer?
Yeah, totally. No one would have second-guessed her.28 (23.7%)
She did the right thing. He's guilty, but he still deserves to stand trial.69 (58.5%)
She probably could have gotten away with just wounding him...21 (17.8%)

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As for the poll question, I like the ending we got better. I much prefer the officer's future to be getting raped in prison, rather than Megan shooting him.

Is it just me or is the math aspect getting lamer and lamer with each episode? The whole dolphin thing with the Venn diagram was painfully unnecessary. And Charlie's original proposition of sorting through public health data for emergency room visits, etc., to track down the rapist wouldn't yield any information specific to their rapist, just rapes. One has to believe in a city that size there would be dozens of rapes every day. How would that information be in any way helpful to the FBI in tracking down this particular rapist?

January 23 2008 at 12:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Hey Jimmy, I thought the same thing ... I kept waiting for her to tell someone that it was really she who was raped (not a 'friend'). And for some reason, I thought or hoped this ep was going to explain Megan's (the character) away time last year. By now we all know that the actress was away on maternity leave but the show has alluded to the fact that Megan had to go off and do something that she didn't want to do and I've been waiting for that to play out for awhile now.

January 21 2008 at 1:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
E. Balko

Roads not taken: The police chief character was interesting; intense and mildly sinister. I half expected him to be drawn further into the plot line.

January 20 2008 at 12:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to E. Balko's comment

Can cops wear goatees? That casting choice seemed odd to me.

January 20 2008 at 12:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Was it just me because im in austin tx, but whenever it came on the HD station it was a re-run of Moonlight and on the regular SD channel it was the episode of Numb3rs and i could have swore that it was a rerun.

January 20 2008 at 9:25 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

They explained why the LAPD officer kept working with them. It was because she started out on a smaller police force and she could relate to them better than the FBI.

January 20 2008 at 3:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I didn't realize this was a new episode -- I thought maybe I was watching an old episode I had missed the first time around.

Jonathan, did you consider -- as I did -- that Megan was talking about herself when was talking about a "friend" who had been assaulted?

January 20 2008 at 1:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Charlie and Amita, tell me about it, you know I'd love the show even more if it was pure procedural. All the interpersonal stuff feels really forced. But the Charlie and Amita situation really started to bug me this episode, beyond just spinning there wheels they don't even speak to each other as if they're a couple, their dialog all sounds like it was written for children.

January 19 2008 at 10:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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