= main character or one of the main characters / = secondary part /= mini-appearance


 

Veritas: The Quest

Adventure/Sci-Fi. The series (running for 13 episodes only in 2003) is about a team of mystery-seekers/archeologists on the search for lost artefacts of the "Ancients", a long-gone hightech-civilisation with immense power. However their opponents, a secret organization named Dorna, are willing to do everything to guard these secrets. Vincent is a mysterious guy, experienced soldier and martial arts expert on one hand, and spiritual at the other. He has a major part in episodes 4, 5, 11 and 13.

Interview

My little tribute to the series:

 

My fanfiction "VERITAS: The seal of Imhotep"

 

Episode 1 "Reunion"

The rebellious Niko has to leave his school again and thus is suddenly in the care of his father and his team, not knowing yet what is going on. In order to find the truth behind Niko's mother Haley's disappearance 10 years ago, the team is on the tracks of an artefact, recently discovered in Paris. DORNA is after it as well, of course. And so Niko tries to save his father's life in warning him, but endangers everything despite his good intentions.

 

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

A promising start for this mystery adventure series! The characters are nicely introduced and played. One feels with Nikko and his father from the beginning.

Rating for Arnold:

His character is set up interestingly with that mixture of 'I know more than I say' and the soldier/mercenary attitude plus a nice portion of humor. Hilarious scene with Vincent and Niko playing chess. Arnold is a perfect match for that character setting.

Best quote (arguing with Calvin in the catacombs of Paris wether Vincent has academic grades or not):

Calvin: "I have advanced degrees in Archeology, Astronomy and Paleontology."

Vincent: "Really? I have advanced degrees in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Shaolin Kungfu."

 

Episode 2 "Antarctica"

Following the ancient map which discovered in the old temple under Paris that shows the continent of Antarctica, the team sets out to the pole. After a plane accident, in which Cal is injured, they discover under the snow a pyramid with strange powers. But soon, they are ambushed by their rivals. Vincent tries to teach Niko some basics of martial arts and self control in this episode.

 

 

Episode rating:

Suspenseful continuation of the pilot movie. The characters are futher developed and the special effects are as good as can be for a 2003-TV-episode. (In the beginning I was ranting about not having gloves and everything for a tript to Antarctica, but well... it was only a training scene!)

Rating for Arnold:

Nice scenes with Niko and later with Calvin.

Best quote (after Vincent left Niko standing with the stones in his outstretched hands and the youngster asked for the purpose):

"I don't know, saw it in a Kungfu movie."

 

Episode 3 "Skulls"

A very cunning female archeologist digs up a crystal skull in Africa, double crosses her partners and later tries to sell the piece in an auction, where also Solomon Zond places his bids. However, a mysterious bidder snatches the skull, believed to be the part of an ancient power source. Niko gets hints by a mysterious stranger about another skull already found during the IIIrd Reich.The traces lead to a German neonazi group and their activities in Berlin.

 

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Well, serious mistake when there's shown a very recognizable image of Cologne with its cathedral and subtitled "Berlin". The plot is also rather thin when they discover Albert Speer's villa practically untouched still with Hitler's painting at the wall. However, nice idea with Calvin and the blueprint...

Rating for Arnold:

He has not so much to do in this episode. It is nice to hear him talk German, though...

 

 

Episode 4 "Heist"

In this episode, Dr. Zond discovers the "Sphere of Archimedes" which is told to foresee catastrophes like earthquakes. A warlord from Kasachstan steals the artefact, and Zond's team tries to get it back in sending Juliet in posing as a journalist. Meanwhile the audience learns that Vincent was a member of the Dorna once. And just now it looks as if he has decided to betray Solomon Zond and deliver the Sphere to the Dorna. This was the last episode that originally aired.

 

 

 

Episode rating:

As good as it can be for a 45 minutes episode with a plot which could easily fill a 2 hours movie. Some unexplained gaps, however finally more about another team member of Veritas, this time Vincent and Juliet. The traitor-story was well done.

Rating for Arnold:

Interesting, mysterious and dark character and nicely conveyed! This was a good one!

 

 

Episode 5 "The Wheel of Dharma"

Vincent gets a letter from the monastery in Tibet, where he has studied as a child. Now the monks are in danger, because somewhere in their vaults the holy relic of the "Wheel of Dharma" is hidden, and the Chinese military wants it, too. Veritas team travels to Tibet and immediately gets in trouble: Niko is taken prisoner by the army and the search for the "Wheel" proves out to be difficult. But then Niko meets an interesting inmate of the prison.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Exact mixture of adventure, emotion and mystery, with some very touching moments about friendship. This episode is focused on Niko and Vincent.

Rating for Arnold:

 

 

 

Episode 6 "Sangraal"

The Veritas team must help an old friend of Solomon, whose wife has been kidnapped by mysterious 'Knights of the Grail' wanting them now to find this old relic. So they set out to Scotland on the tracks of the Templars.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Wow, this episode exploits all Templar myths possible, and that in a very simplistic low budget way: the Grail, the Sinclairs, Nova Scotia, underground caverns. However, okay for a 45 minutes episode - this would have been worth an elaborate setting à la Dan Brown!

Rating for Arnold:

Well, he has not so much to do as saving the day (again).

 

Episode 7 "Mummy Virus"

The team unearths an old Inca mummy that proves to be infected with a deadly virus. A run against time to save Maggie and keep the greedy heads of a pharmaceutical company at bay, who wants to create a biological weapon with the old virus.

 

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Interesting story with the pharma enterprise. However, Solomon tends to fall for the wrong women...

Rating for Arnold:

Loved that little reverence to "The Mummy", as Vincent says "Mummies - always trouble". Good scenes when the house is under siege, and finally, how Vincent is relieved, when he has not to recur to the ultimate violence.

 

Episode 8 "Name of God"

This time, the Veritas team tries to get the transcription of a proto-hebrew artefact. Their way leads them to an ultraorthodox Jewish community with a holy Rabbi who knows the name of God and possesses the power of healing. Dorna is on their heels and exploits the rivalties in the community with blackmail and instigation to murder - and Niko falls in love with the Rabbi's daughter.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Interesting story and setting. The cliché of the orthodox community is broken with the character of the Rabbi's son and the twist in the end.

Rating for Arnold:

Vincent has not much to do in this one, but once more proves to have a religious background.

 

 

Episode 9 "Devil's Child"

The Veritas team tries to recover and protect a Russian boy who is a linguistic genius and moreover, is able to speak and write the languace of the 'Ancient Ones'. However, Niko can convince his father, that reuniting the boy with his mother and procuring him a new identity is worth more than scientific discoveries.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Too much cliché with ex-KGB and backwards Russians living in villages like a hundred years ago. A plothole as well: why the authorities already after them don't stop their jet?! Also, orthodox and catholic church are mixed when the priests talk about the Vatican.

Rating for Arnold:

Vincent has not much to do in this one

 

Episode 10 "Avalon"

This time the team has to solve the mystery of an ancient druidic sarcophagus that contains a modern-day corpse and is found in the American countryside. Soon, they learn about a modern pagan community with rather sinister rites, and Niko can only be saved in the very last minute.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

The story was interesting, good crime setting. However maybe Niko falls in love too often...

Rating for Arnold:

Loved the scene in the hotel with Niko's cellphone, but he has not much to do in this episode

 

Episode 11 "The lost Codex"

Leonardo da Vinci hides his diary in which he writes about the construction of a machine with immense power, but he gives clues how to find the book in letters to his pupil. Centuries later, the "Veritas"-team is charged with getting acces to these letters, which are to be offered in an illegal auction. A descent of the Medici clan and member of the Dorna organisation is after them as well, and in the course of action Calvin's girl friend Sophie - who originally found the lost letters - is killed. In the end, we get a very disturbing insight of the sponsor of the "Veritas"-team and a very old conspiracy.

 

 

 

 

Here are the two funny scenes with Juliet posing as Vincent's wife:

 

 

Episode rating:

This was exciting, and dark, and full of a promising mystery-adventure. Time to evolve the character of Calvin, and to throw a glance on Vincent's mysterious past and dubious role now. Interesting plot twists.

Rating for Arnold:

He had some very good scenes in this episode. How he has to play husband and wife with Juliet gives a funny touch to this rather dark story.

 

 

Episode 12 "Eternal"

This time, we join the team in Siberia, where we learn now, Haley's father had worked on a pipeline project 25 years ago. Back then, Haley got lost in the wilderness and was saved by Tungus tribesmen. She wrote everything in a journal, that now has been rediscovered and the Veritas team try to retrace her steps that might lead them to a fountain of youth. However, Niko gets lost as well, is found be the Tungus - who revere him as a godlike person that can help finding their lost fountain. Now Solomon and Vincent try to rescue Niko, but soon are trapped by their treacherous guide.

 

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Interesting setting in Siberia! The plotline, where Niko gets lost was a bit foreseeable, the rest with the treason of the guide made up for it.

Rating for Arnold:

Great scene, where Vincent is helpless and can't do anything for Solomon or Niko.

 

 

 

Episode 13 "Helmholtz Resonance"

The mysterious benefactor of Veritas, Jean de Molay, hires the team personally to find an old Templar castle, that is hidden by optical tricks. A part of an old map, guarded by the descendants of the Templars (i.e. Molay) should guide them and maybe lead to the ring of truth. The other half of the map seems to be in DORNA's hands already. The strange resonance chambers inside the castle soon play tricks on everyone's mind, especially Niko's, who thinks, the enemy is inside and Vincent betrayed them.

Sadly, this is the last episode of the series and we never get to know, where Niko's mother is and what is Vincent's backstory.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Interesting beginnings, where it looks as if Vincent is a time traveller or immortal like the Veritas benefactor. Also we get to know more about the Templars within/against DORNA. But the mirrors protecting the castle still working perfectly after 700 years...this was a bit contrived. Surrealistic paranoid scenes in the castle very good again!

Rating for Arnold:

 

Best quote: "The trick is to say everything without talking at all."

 

Alias, Episode "Crossings" (seas.3, ep. 12)

Crime-ScienceFiction. The series ran from 2001 to 2006 and tells the adventures of a young operative who amongst others tries to secure dangerous old artifacts, bevore they fall into the hands of the concurrent spy organization of the Covenant, mainly recruited from ex-KGB. In this episode, Sidney and her partner are supposed to retrieve a Covenant deserter from North Korea, but the plan is betrayed, both get in Korean custody and Sidney's father has to team up with the dangerous sister of his Russian ex-wife to get Sidney out.

 

 

 

Episode rating:

I don't know the series, but this episode showed up with several clichés. The scenes in North Korea were completely implausible (a military jeep stands in open country, functional and ready to use for the fugitives?!) In addition, a good example for the brutalization of series during the last 20 years.

Rating for Arnold:

Another mini-appearance. Threatening looking evil guys are simply his speciality. Sadly we don't get any background of this Russian covenant-agent.

 

A short scene from the episode, found at youtube:

 

 

 

24, season 4

Every episode covers exactly one hour of the 24 hours - hence the name. In the first 6 episodes, a train has been derailed by terrorists and the Secretary of Defense has been kidnapped. His public execution and its streaming on the internet, or better his preemptive killing by an airstrike from the US, can be avoided in the last minute, because agent Jack Bauer rescues him singlehandedly. However, soon the Counter Terrorist Unit discovers that everything was only a maneuver, and the real threat is the device stolen in the derailed train: with it, all the nuclear power plants in the US can forced into a meltdown. Marwan shows up for the first time in episode 7.

The problem of this whole season is that the terrorists, including Marwan, are portrayed as turkish, and they are connected to events in Turkey. However, all of their names are clearly Arabic; plus they wear a Palestinian kaffiyeh. So that's a major mistake always bothering me. The series justifies various forms of torture for "the good cause", that's another issue.

--> My reviews follow the DVD WITH the DELETED SCENES in their proper place (i.e. there might be screencaps of scenes you don't have seen in the original airing of the series) <--

Behind the scenes.

 

Episode 7

Agent Jack Bauer and his girlfriend Audrey are on their way to look at the surveillance tapes so she can identify the traitor she has seen during her kidnapping. In the meantime, at the CTU, team member Edgar tries to shut down all the nuclear power plants before the terrorists break through the firewalls. He manages all except 7. Jack and Audrey are ambushed and can only narrowly escape. Beyrous Araz and his mother try to escape from their vengeful husband, who later has to justify his failure to Marwan.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

This was a typical "24", with suspense, action and sinister agendas and agent Bauer saving the day. The characters are portrayed well enough and within backgrounds with flaws and problems, especially the Araz-family. The "lefties"-son of the Secretary is a bit too much cliché, just as the hardboiled Secretary himself. (I don't say anything about the implausability to criss-cross the city within 15 minutes...)

Rating for Arnold:

A promising start for Marwan as calmly threatening terrorist mastermind. Arnold gives him the right dangerous aura with little hints that there's more than just a flat bad guy.

 

Episode 8 to 10

The suspect Audrey has identified is shot by a sniper before he can be interrogated. The CTU knows about a mole, however catches the wrong person. While the innocent colleague is tortured, Edgar discovers the real enemy. She makes a deal, though, to get them data from an enterprise obviously involved in the attacks. Before she can hack into the computer, she is shot by Americans obviously working with the terrorists. While Jack is still on the hunt for the override device to shut down the critical reactors, one of the reactors goes into meltdown and the National Guard tries to evacuate as much people as possible. Dina Araz gets caught by Jack Bauer and his team and makes a deal to help them, if they safe their son who is held hostage by his father.

Marwan only shows up for a moment in ep. 8 and 10

 

 

 

 

 

Episode 11

Clues found by CTU-member Curtis, information given by Dina Arraz and Audrey's ex-husband Paul finally let Jack Bauer's team track down the override device and the man programming it: Habib Marwan. They circle the building where he sits at his computer posing as an emergency IT-supporter. They capture the override device, but not Marwan. Curtis manages to to shut down the remaining reactors with the help of Edgar.

 

 

 

Episode rating:

After the last episode was a bit hanging at times, this one was great again. Torture is shown as a usual tool brought in action against anyone suspicios. Of course, the terrorists threaten with more nuclear meltdowns. However, I cannot really develop enough sympathy for the 'good guys' either, seeing them lying, cheating (including the President) and torturing. The message of the series is clear, but underneath, one gets the impression that the terrorists might be right at some point...

Rating for Arnold:

Finally more screentime for Marwan. He is a great opponent for Jack Bauer, just as determined and ruthless. And for sure there are not many actors that can fill such a role without falling into generics. So this was a convincing performance with a very dangerous aura. Great scene where Marwan and Jack recognize each other in the office (but I think this had been cut)

 

 

Episode 12

Marwan narrowly escapes into a bus, but now the CTU and everyone else know who he is and how he looks like. The hunt is on and he says goodbye to his trusted friends and his family. In the CTU, Driscoll has to deal with the suicide of her daughter, and Tony is placed on top of the operation, much to the regret of Curtis. Jack and Paul are on the track of major defense contractor McClellan-Forster, where Marwan was not only a top-employee, but the engineer of the override devide. However, the bosses of the enterprise decide to let all evidence connecting them to the terrorists they sold weapons to, vanish, instead of helping the CTU. They use a EMP-device that fries all electric devices within the area.

 

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

An episode without any torture scene and still full of suspense! Much time for character development inside the CTU and for Marwan. Sadly, the family scene has been cut and that breaks the flow and setting of the episode, because the first scene in the bus only makes sense with the family-scene. Nice twist with McClellan-Forster Inc. who in their opportunistic greed, are practically worse than Marwan's followers.

Rating for Arnold:

One look into his face and eyes and you know all that Marwan is thinking and feeling at the moment - without many words and gestures. Thankfully, at least the scene with his friend stayed inside.

 

The deleted scene from Episode 12 (Marwan says Goodbye to his family). In an interview, Arnold says, this was his favorite scene. It was a shame that is was cut. It would have made all the difference for the series, but - well, a bad guy always has to be a bad guy in Hollywood, even to his family and pets,r ight?

Episode 13

Jack and Paul get out of the McClellan-Forster building, but due to the electricty failure, they end up in an arms dealer shop, where they barricade for a shootout. The company has sent a private mercenary team after them. At the CTU, Tony has to deal with his ex-wife in charge, and the coordination of Jack's and Paul's rescue. Marwan only shows up shortly to initiate the next move - against the President.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Now the company has private mercenaries? That seemed a bit too much. The scenes in the arms dealer shop also dragged too long in my opinion. Good scene where Audrey questions Jack's torture practise.

Rating for Arnold:

Too short an appearance for rating...

 

Episode 14

Jack decides to sent Dina Arraz undercover to another member of the terrorist cell in the hope he will lead them to Marwan's whereabouts. They fake a hostage situation, where Dina has taken Jack prisoner, but Marwan suspects that something is wrong and thwarts the attempt to arrest him. Meanwhile, Marwan's ally infiltrates the Air Force Base disguised as a high ranking officer.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Suspense and drama! Very nice twist with the switch in the tunnel and later the scene with the empty gun.

Rating for Arnold:

 

 

Episode 15

Marwan wants to distract the CTU from the dead family of the air force pilot long enough so his comrade can take off with the Phoenix and opts for a decoy: he demands the exchange of Beyrooz Araz for Jack Bauer. At CTU, everyone is suspicious and immediately Beyrooz is questioned and tortured because they think he might know more and be of any value. The exchange is finally made, but not everything goes as planned, and Jack has managed to plant a tracking possibility that could lead to Marwan.

(And did anyone notice how they constantly bicker about rank, who's the boss, and pay raises at the CTU office - except Jack, the lonely hero -, while the terrorists are mostly calm and commited to their cause even if it means to die?)

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Very good dialoge between Jack and Marwan. Good scenes with Beyrooz, too.

Makes me overlook (almost) the plothole, why Chloe could get a voice memo of Marwan from McClellan-Forster, even though their computers are all wiped clean by the EMP. Also, Chloe constantly looks as if she has just done something wrong, that does not fit in.

Rating for Arnold:

Those scenes in the warehouse reminded me so much of "Hard Target"! I can't imagine anyone else filling the part of Marwan that completely. Being such a bad guy and still manage to be somewhat attractive with the dark-side-aura.

 

 

Episode 16

Marwan discovers the little trap Jack has left behind and narrowly escapes the SWAT team. While the CTU still tries to figure out Marwan's next move, his comrade Mitch Anderson manages to shot down Airforce One.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Great cat-and-mouse-game! Sadly the scene with Beyrooz' rescue was cut - so the audience did never know how he was saved.

Rating for Arnold:

Very good scene how Marwan discovers the fused telephone lines and wonders if there is a traitor amongst his men - and he has to make the decision to slip out quietly. Everything is conveyed without words!

 

 

Episode 17

The CTU and Marwan's men are on the hunt for the "nuclear football" that went down with Airforce One. The case has been found by two people on a camping trip who now get into the line of fire.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Well, it is the setting of the series, but it becomes a bit too much. First the nuclear powerplants, then Airforce One, now the nuclear warheads... IMO it would have been better to have only 2 or maybe 3 things and the hunt of CTU after the terrorists. The setting in this old power plant was very nice; the plot this time quite foreseeable.

Rating for Arnold:

He has not much to do in this one, except being mean.

 

 

Episode 18

The CTU tries to determine which nuclear warhead the terrorists are after and, to secure finally a lead to Marwan. As Marwan's friend makes a fatal mistake, the CTU manages to capture his partner named Prado. Marwan, who is underway to another location by car, informs an attorney from "Amnesty Global" that Prado is held illeagally and tortured. As the new President Logan does not want to sanction torture, the CTU's hands are tied - until Jack Bauer offers a drastic measure.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

The implausible plot with the continuos attack plans aside (why should Marwan have arranged the theft of this missile, if the country would have been devastated already by the meltdowns he had planned?), this was a very engaging episode. Wonderful chess match between Jack Bauer and Marwan. Both are worthy opponents, willing to risk absolutely everything "for the cause". Really nice move with Amnesty Global!

Rating for Arnold:

He sits in a dark car most of the time, but still is able to transmit a lot with the slightes facial expression or a look: as Marwan slowly gets a tiny bit nervous something might go wrong, when his friend calls and later he is captured and he comes up with the Amnesty thing. And watch how he almost smiles in the last moments where he plans the missile strike...

 

 

Episode 19

President Logan demands Jack's arrest, after hearing he had obtained the knowledge of Marwan's location by torture - explicitly forbidden by the President. So the Secret Service is under way to bring him in and thus ruins the mission of CTU to arrest Marwan, who is busy to record a message to the American people. Meanwhile, Marwan's team arms the warhead.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

I still think the series' makers should have been content with 1-2 threats. It also seems, a few persons and threads have vanished from the plot without explanation. Thus said, it was a good episode with nice thoughtful moments between Jack and Audrey. And yes, Marwan is a bad terrorist, but still, in his message, he has a certain point... It makes you think. And those moments in a tv-series in 2005, only 4 years after 9/11. Jack and Marwan are formidable characters.

Rating for Arnold:

Wonderful scenes where Marwan records the message and then discovers again, the CTU is very close.

 

 

Episode 20/21

Marwan does not show up in episode 20, where Jack kidnaps the Chinese terrorist from the embassy, and sacrifices the life of Audreys husband Paul. In 21, the team under Jack Bauer is finally underway to Marwan's hiding spot. Marwan is captured, but the missile with the stolen warhead is already underway and can't be stopped. And the Chinese demand the extradition of the responsible for the death of their consul.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Two strong episodes with dramatic moments for Jack, Audrey and Marwan. Jack's "I'm the only one who can do this and I'm willing to do everything" is perhaps stressed a bit too often, but the scene where he almost shoots Marwan is great.

Rating for Arnold:

When he smiles in the end, as Jack discoveres the missile can't be stopped, that sends chills down your spine. That's the portrait of a fanatic willing to kill and to die himself.

 

 

Episode 22

Jack still tries to get through to Marwan, but it is a lost cause. They decide to bring him to CTU for questioning, but before they reach the car, Marwan is freed by his men. Meanwhile in the presidential bunker, the squabbling for power begins, as President Logan is not really up to his task. At CTU, they realize that Marwan has been called from SoD Heller son's cellphone and bring him in for questioning. The youngster does not know anything about terrorists, but reveals he's gay and his partner was probably on Marwan's payrol. With the contacts of the cellphone, CTU tries to corner the terrorist couple, but the woman manages to take Tony hostage.

 

 

 

Episode rating:

This started as a real good one, with the conversation between Jack and Marwan. But Marwan's escape was flat and contrived, and one giant plothole. How did his (new) people know at all? And then, Marwan is shot in ep. 21, but then is lead away and seems unharmed (and it is not even mentioned anymore, or that someone treats him, while other people getting shot have screentime with lots of moaning and squirming). Besides, it gets annoying, that constantly new enemies pop up. Less with more background would have been better than that cannon fodder.

Rating for Arnold:

Little screentime, but brilliant.

 

What I would have loved to see here:

 

Episode 23 / 24

In 23, Marwan shows only up shortly, and we see, his injury is not forgotten. CTU still hunts that assassin girl who holds Tony captive, while in the meantime the Chinese apprehend the wanted agent from CTU. As he talks and names Jack Bauer as the responsible for the assault on the consulat, the President wants to hand Bauer over to the Chinese - or better yet, let him kill before that happens. Finally, Jack apprehends the assassin girl, who after only a little persuasion gives away Marwan's location. After the showdown in the parking deck, the missile is shot down the very last moment. WIth Vice-President Palmer's consent, Tony devises a plan to get Jack out of CTU and away, before the Secret Service can lay his hands on him.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

These would have been a good episode in any police series, but here it felt a little out of place. Suddenly this killer girlie, that looked as if right from a computer game... As said before, a more fleshed out team of opponents around Marwan would have been better than those background-less figures coming and going. This could have been a great showdown, but it was not. Moving scenes between Jack and Audrey and Tony and Michelle. And really, that phone would not have been usable after Marwan fired two rounds close distance on it...

Rating for Arnold:

Sadly, he had not much to do anymore except to die, what was a good scene despite the lousy special effect when he was falling. I had hoped for a last intense dramatic exchange of words with Jack, but the script was not so kind.

 

 

 

 

Shark, Episode "Gangster Movies "(season 2, ep. 1)

Thriller. The series (running 2006-2008) features the attorney Sebastian Stark (played by James Woods). In this episode an important witness in a murder case is assassinated in an explosion, killing two cops in the act, too. After some investigations, the Russian mafia-scene of Los Angeles becomes the prime suspect. Stark and his team are trying to convey mafia-boss Andrej Sitowski, who poses as an art gallerist. However, this is not easy, and soon the 'good guys' recurse to blackmail and fraud on their own, while Sitowski gives them an innocent smile.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Exciting, fast-pacing plot, but one has to love courthouse-stuff to really appreciate it. The characters are shown with many facettes, and not only the pleasant one! This gives a realistic touch.

Rating for Arnold:

He playes this 'grey eminence of crime' cool and nonchalant, with just a look threatening more than a bunch of angry words. Convincing!

 

Chuck

Action/Comedy. The series (running since 2007) is about the 'nerdy' Chuck, working in an Electronics Store (played by Zachary Levi), who accidentally has downloaded a top-secret C.I.A.-database in his brain - what surely initiates a lot of trouble.

 

Episode 17, seas. 2 "Chuck versus the predator"

In this episode, Chuck is contacted by the mysterious 'Orion', the ingenious inventor of the Intersect. But while he tries to meet him in person to seek help, Fulcrum is on 'Orion's' tracks, too. They send Vincent Smith, who already dies in the first half of the episode swallowing some poison, but who later proves to be quite 'undead'...

 

 

 

 

My little tribute:

 

Episode rating:

Chuck at its best: action, humor, excitement, the "Buy-More"-guys... One can't wait to see the next episode and to discover more about this elusive Orion...

Rating for Arnold:

He plays the Fulcrum agent with usual villaineous fun and with that gives the until now rather flat opponent spy organization much more profile. The 'resurrection'-scene is priceless!

 

My fanfiction, cutting in after this episode and named "Chuck versus the ultimate lie".

 

Episode 19, seas. 2 "Chuck Versus the Dream Job"

In this episode, Chuck finds his father and has to fake getting a job in the software engeneering company of Ted Roarke, who, Chucks father said, stole him all his ideas... But now it seems, Roarke is about to release a computer virus for Fulcrum. Moreover, the headquarter of the enterprise has a huge secret, and so has Chuck's father.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Exciting stuff, and Chuck finally goes into combat! Very funny scenes. Good play of Scott Bakula as his father, too.

Rating for Arnold:

Sadly only a little appearance, hoped for more after ep. 17! Not enough for rating.

 

Episode 21, seas. 2 "Chuck Versus the Colonel"

Chuck has to rescue his father from the hands of Roarke and Fulcrum and to escape Agent Casey as well, who is under orders to bring the dangerous 'asset' under lock. All traces lead to a secret Fulcrum base...

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Great continuation with unexpected turns. Hilarious situations and confrontations in the Buy-More and at Casey's home, who is finally identified as a notorious stalker :D

Rating for Arnold:

Another micro-appearance only. Poor character really has to suffer again in this episode!

 

About Vincent's casting and his fate, from an Interview with Chris Fedak, co-creator of the series, with Alan Sepinwall from "The Star Ledger", 27th April 2009 (Complete Interview here):

A.S.: Is Vincent alive or dead?
C.F.: Vincent is dead. But when you're dead in the "Chuck" universe, there's a tendency to not be dead.
A.S.: And he had more of a tendency to not be dead than anyone else.
C.F.: When we cast Arnold Vosloo in the part, with "The Mummy," it was Jeremiah Chechnik's idea, he directed the episode, "Chuck vs. the Predator." Arnold's very sophisticated, and it was really fun for us to make him more and more sickly as the (season) went by. It became a joke: how can we hurt Arnold this week? So I think he's dead right now. He was inside the drive-in when the F-16's dropped their bombs. He's dead, but don't hold me to it."

Sadly, Arnold didn't return to "Chuck", but in an interview for the series finale in 2012, "Chuck"-actor Zach Levi says, he would've liked to work with him again (Complete Interview by Chr. Radish, 24th January 2012 here)

Are there any guest stars that wish you could have brought back?

LEVI: Scott Bakula, for sure. That was a bummer. He’s such an excellent human being, who’s a great actor and a great man. In a lot of the conversations we had over our time together, Scott and I have a lot in common. He imparted a lot of wisdom to me. His journey on Quantum Leap was similar to mine here, in that it was all day, every day, with crazy hours. He was so supportive of me, from day one, and an excellent guy. I wish Tony Hale never left. He’s so funny, and such an incredible human being. I’ll take John Larroquette, any day. I loved Arnold Vosloo. Jordana Brewster was great.

 

Navy CIS, Episode "Aliyah" (ep. 138 = seas. 6, ep. 25)

Crime/Espionage. The series (running since 2003) features a team from the Naval Criminal Investigation Service, which conducts investigations about causes in the US Navy and Marine Corps. In this episode the friend of team member Ziva is killed - was it self-defense or murder? Because the dead man was an agent of the Mossad, the team has to travel to Israel in order to prevent diplomatic problems and uncover the truth. But highest ranks are involved, and everyone has secrets.

 

 

 

 

Episode rating:

Rating is a little difficult, because I do not know the rest of the series. However, the plot was suspending, sinister and complicated like it expected in this genre, and the characters were set well in this game of trust and distrust.

Rating for Arnold:

This was sadly only a little part with not much possibility to evolve something. The interaction with Ziva was well played and I liked the theme of helplessness face to face with orders and the greater scheme.