FlashForward Week 3: Puzzle Pieces in a German Prison

The third week of ABC's new FlashForward arrives inside the television review halls of Screen Rant.

The world view of what has taken place expands as we begin in a prison in Munich, Germany, where a long-term prisoner named Geyer and a guard begin a discussion that will change many lives and perspectives. What will we find out this time? Will we garner more puzzle pieces that are put in place or only glimpses at the 2 minutes and 17 seconds that had almost all of us spent frozen three weeks ago?

I’ll be reviewing this and future episodes of FlashForward in an ironic and incredibly-appropriate “stream of consciousness” format, giving you essentially what I’m thinking as the show airs. I encourage everyone to send feedback in regard to any of the points below and use this opportunity as a sounding-off point to tell the Screen Rant team what YOU think about this third episode of ABC’s FlashForward!

The secret knowledge of foreign language and subtitles:

I know that my viewpoint stems from a bias based on my continual hunt for open and closed captions in the entertainment realm, but I LOVE to have movies that feature partial subtitles. Here we meet an older inmate and a familiar guard who talk about their lives, past current and future and while it's short, the information is passed along nicely in German which is subtitled for the audience. Great stuff! The reason? For those of you that don't speak a particular language, the subtitles provided are a glimpse into secret knowledge being conveyed on screen. Rather than thinking of them as a hurdle to one's movie-watching effort, think of them as a bundle of information you wouldn't have had otherwise and you'll see them in a whole new light.

The cause of the FlashForwards:

It's great to see this information used as another always-dangling carrot and like so many other things in our pseudo-scientific lives, we'll certainly be approached from a variety of sources as to why and how the Blackout happened, who was responsible and more importantly, how we can prevent it from happening again. Do YOU have a line on how the Blackout happened? Don't forget to use the discussion items below to tell us what you think!

137 Sekunden:

This isn't only the title of this episode (which again evokes the power and "mystique" of foreign languages), it's the time period that the older inmate Geyer says he has many answers for. Like many arguments that occur online, here the Nazi's/Holocaust/etc are mentioned/inserted and the scales of justice and knowledge begin moving and will eventually arrive at a decision. I like when we're solicited to do so and can't wait to see what decision awaits.

Information from Geyer will lead them to "them":

I really like the tack the program is taking on providing us pieces of knowledge, and then moving on where we'll get to see if the buy-in on [insert character/event] will pay off in the future as we head towards a known point in the future. The tension it adds to the program is really well done.

Outstanding German Prison Production Design:

I cannot wait to interview either the production designer or some of the crew that made this episode, mostly because I want more detail on where the prison scenes were filmed for this episode. The design of each of the scenes that centered around moving in and about the prison were spectacular, providing something literally colored differently for all to behold. It's another piece of why many people see and love television shows that often goes "unseen". Be sure to thank the production designers of the programs you watch. They are the true artists of everything seen on-screen and in a show like this one, can make or break an effort.

White-Bread Tightie-Whitie Hula Dance:

There are a series of words that I never thought I would envision or (GULP!) see in an episode of a network-based television program, but alas, here they are and here it is for all to see. We see the same gentleman that we've seen in numerous/previous FlashForwards dancing to music in his white-undeed glory. Frankly I know why I'm not a detective because I think I'd have shot him out of sheet fright. Later, we find out that he's a man down on his luck (and dancing skill) and that the path is emblazed for him to journey into another white series of clothes (a guard shirt with a badge, etc). What can we expect in the future from this wayward soul? Will he have a part to play in the machine speeding towards late April next year?

Guilt-stepping your FlashForward Visions:

It was interesting to see that the future-guard's vision was actually held as a reason to "do something" and made me think about how many people would use a "vision" as a crutch to ensure that things inside their own FlashForwards actually happen. It's another facet that I love about this show and I can't wait to see it utilized more. People have ALWAYS been driven by "what they must do" regardless of the facts, perspective and knowledge, and I can't wait to see how that soup of factors is built, boiled and served to us here via FlashForwards.

Living by the future rather than for it:

Time Travel has been something that all of us have considered. Many of us have hoped for it. Others fear it because it means that someone else could be in control of OUR destiny, rather than being able to guide your own fate. While this bullet point sounds very much like the previous one, this one goes much deeper. Are you one who believes (as is hailed in the TERMINATOR films) that we "have no fate but what we make for ourselves?" I am.

Now consider the viewpoint of you knowing that things you've "seen" on a certain day in the future would come to pass.  Would you go on living your life comprised of a fate "you make" or one where the events to come are the focus and you're new intent is to make them come true/happen? I LOVE the questions this show asks of us as an audience and I cannot wait for more. I'm trying to remember a television show that asked me to think as much as this one and I just don't have an answer. Great work, ABC!

The Screen Rant team is still wondering what YOU think of this week's episode of FlashForward. Discuss below and share your thoughts on this week's episode!

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