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TV Review: LEVERAGE – SEASON TWO – ‘The Future Job’

The team takes down a fake psychic and deliver another solid episode
Grade: B
By MARY BRYAN (Source)

The LEVERAGE team unravels a scam most of us have heard of – fake psychics – in this week’s episode “The Future Job.” Dalton Rand is a faux psychic with a local television show with his eye on the prize of a network deal, using his abilities as a con man to cheat his way to fame. When a concerned brother of one of Rand’s customers tells Nate (Timothy Hutton) about what’s been going on, the Leverage team devises a plan to bring this man down.

When Nate and Parker (Beth Riesgraf) go to one of his live tapings of his show, Rand uses a tactic called a “cold reading” on Parker, telling her and the audience some shocking things about her past which makes her run out of the studio in tears. Parker has never been one to show much feeling, especially pain or grief, so it’s always heartbreaking when she expresses it. It was a great scene, especially afterwards when the team finds her curled in a ball on Nate’s living room floor, convinced that Rand’s a real psychic, while the team shows her exactly how he did the cold reading on her. While they taught Parker, they also taught the audience exactly how that particular con is done without the use of flashbacks, which I think was really well done.

Eliot’s (Christian Kane) big brother like attitude, offering to kill Rand after Parker, in all her distraught anger, suggests that they do so, was also really nice because it shows how much the team has bonded with each other and is willing to protect each other – even if it’s not in the most legal of ways. Of course, legal has never been the team’s game, but murder would be a step too far. Instead they use Tara (Jeri Ryan) to convince Rand that she’s a real psychic, and make him use her for his own business so that they can destroy him and his reputation on the air. Of course if everything always went to plan, it would be boring.

I really thought the fast pace of the scene with Tara feeding Rand the information that the LEVERAGE team was gathering for her was cut together well – it really showed how stressful it was for all of them when they were trying to pull that off. It was especially stressful for Hardison (Aldis Hodge) who had Nate breathing down his neck constantly while he was wired up on orange soda and gummy frogs as he tried to pull everyone’s records as fast as he could. Unfortunately, Tara does such a good job of convincing the audience that Rand is the real deal that the fake psychic ends up getting kidnapped by mobsters in hopes of finding their hidden money. Of course the team end up taking down two birds with one stone, so to speak, and at the end of the episode everyone got what was coming to them.

The only thing I didn’t particularly like in this episode was their overuse of flashbacks. I felt like in some places they weren’t really needed and were throwing the story pacing off. Understandably, sometimes they would have to use flashbacks as a filler if the episode is too short, but when used too much it can feel like it’s throwing you back and forth between the storyline.

But overall it was a good episode – not one of the strongest this season, but it was entertaining and kept you on your toes as you tried to figure out how the team will pull it off. With only two episodes left this season things are sure to be heating up really quickly. Be sure to catch LEVERAGE every Wednesday at 10pm EST on TNT!