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Season Five

Methos' past revealed.

Season Five Episode Guides 

"He is Duncan MacLeod, the Highlander. Born in 1592 in the Highlands of Scotland, he is still alive. He is immortal. For four hundred years he's been a warrior, a lover, a wanderer, constantly facing other Immortals in combat to the death. The winner takes his enemy's head and with it, his power.

"I am a Watcher, part of a secret society of men and women who observe and record, but never interfere. We know the truth about Immortals. In the end, there can be only one. May it be Duncan MacLeod. The Highlander." ~spoken by Joe Dawson

Starring: Adrian Paul (Duncan MacLeod); Stan Kirsch (Richie Ryan); Jim Byrnes (Joe Dawson)


Prophecy (96501)

I once read where Adrian Paul had not wanted this episode to be made. He felt that the concept of Highlander should keep only the fantasy element of immortals and their "game" and leave all other fantasy elements such as witches, prophecies, and magic out of it. He said much the same about the Ahriman arc, too. However, this particular episode has one really great thing going for it… flashbacks to Duncan's childhood in Glenfinnan.

Twelve year old Duncan MacLeod and his cousin Robert (the one he will kill in the Homeland episode) tease young Debra Campbell (again DM's first love from Homeland) and end up trying to prove their bravery by hunting a wolf in the "haunted" wood. Duncan vanishes and Robert flees back to the village where a stranger has happened by claiming to be a nobleman seeking his son born on the Winter Solstice twelve years before and lost.

Ian and Mary MacLeod realize he is talking of their adopted son, but say nothing. Mary does not trust this stranger. Meanwhile Duncan has awakened and is a "guest" of the Witch of Donan Wood… Cassandra who bathes nude in the moonlight, and who also seems to be a wolf at one time. The boy Duncan is besotted.

In the present, immortal Cassandra appears in Seacouver to urge Duncan MacLeod that he is the child of a prophecy made in a time before she was born, that a child born on the Winter Solstice who has seen both darkness and light would be destined to defeat a great evil. It seems Cassandra's former student Roland Kantos, the strange nobleman, is in Seacouver and is still after MacLeod. Cassandra had once taught Kantos to use his voice to hypnotize and magically control others. Boy does she regret doing that! "He's a great evil. He must be destroyed." The prophecy of this episode would lead writer David Tynan to attempt the Ahriman arc later as he, too, felt Kantos wasn't that evil; that Duncan must now face a truly terrible demon. (Don't write that one David… please don't!)

The Cassandra of this episode is very different from the Cassandra who will return later in the season. This Cassandra is powerful and in control. She does not make a move without careful consideration and she is very glad Duncan MacLeod is no longer underage. Duncan is more than happy to get to know her better. She is very much a user and controller.

Traci Scroggins portrays Cassandra. Gerard Plunkett (who appeared in a minor roll in Homeland is Kantos. Matthew Walker and Anna Hagan reprise their roles as Ian and Mary MacLeod. Young Duncan MacLeod is played by Jeremy Beck.

The End of Innocence (96502)

For the first time since the events of last season's Something Wicked, DM and Richie Ryan meet face-to-face and the result is not pretty. Lean, mean RR has been on the road making a name for himself in the game. Having learned a very harsh lessonm never trust another immortal nor get within their sword reach without defending oneself,  (don't do it Richie!) he has been taking heads if other immortals rub him the wrong way.

Enter leather boy with golden curls and a baby-face, Carter Wellan, who is looking to get a drink while he waits for his friend Haresh Clay. He rubs RR the wrong way and tries to apologize, but RR wants satisfaction. Slash! Boom! Quickening! RR adds another head to his total. But Carter's friend is out to get Richie now, and he is no easy pushover.

In 1657, Haresh Clay (accompanied by his young student Carter Wellan) defeated one of Duncan's teachers, the immortal Graham Ashe who once also taught Juan Sanchez Villa-Lobos Ramirez. Clay taunted Ashe, and after his death taunted Duncan who, to his everlasting shame, did not rush to fight Clay then and there.

Note: Clay is not evil. He does, however, like to taunt his opponents to upset them so that they are easier to kill. This is a perfectly legitimate action, just ask any pro football player. Clay manages to break RR's sword, but Richie is able to run.

But not to Mac. He doesn't trust Mac. Yet where else can he go for some help? He gets himself arrested to avoid Clay and DM bails him out. He gives RR a new sword, that of Graham Ashe. [NOTE: RR's original sword… chosen by the series' first swordmaster Bob Anderson... was a beauty, but it kept falling apart whenever Stan Kirsch tried to use it. He was extremely happy to finally get a "new" sword.]

Meanwhile, Joe attempts to mend his fences with DM in the wake of the Watcher/Immortal War. Faced with being DM's friend or DM's Watcher, he decides to be a friend and has his tattoo removed. He does, however, get to keep his bar. Once more, the bonds of friendship are strained between the principals, and they must redefine who and what they are to one another, and build toward the future.

An intriguing episode!

Guest stars include Real Andrews as Haresh Clay; Chris Humphreys as Graham Ashe; and Chris Martin as Carter Wellan.

Manhunt (96503)

In Season Two when last we saw Carl Robinson, he was about to make his debut as a professional baseball player… again. The man really loves to play ball. Three years later he is still a ball-player with the Seacouver team. He is popular, wealthy, and suddenly a target for k-immies coming out of the woodwork.

When a challenge goes public, and some of his adoring fans see Carl standing sword in hand over a headless body and then a quickening, can we say Public Scandal!? Carl mumbles that it's not murder. "You just don't understand." But a man of his ability does the best thing he can: he goes on the lam from the law.

On his trail is FBI agent, and Carl's original teacher from the last century, immortal Matthew McCormick. Matthew is following a line of headless corpses that have appeared in the towns where Carl has played baseball and now is after Carl, determined to put an end to Carl's reign of terror.

The flashbacks deal primarily with Matthew and Carl's shared past and serve to illustrate that neither is really a k-immie, but that both think the other is.

Into this confusion steps mortal Trey Franks, an equipment manager with the team. He claims to have been the one who actually killed the headless man. His confession gets Carl off the hook, at least publicly. Trey is adamant about his involvement.

This episode is about the perception of evil in others, and whether or not it is right to take the blame for something one hasn't done in order to protect someone else… even someone who might not be worthy of the sacrifice. It is also about making peace with the deeds of the past.

Carl had been forced to take the blame for knocking up the overseer's daughter a hundred and thirty years before. Should he allow Trey to take the blame for Carl's killing the k-immie? Should he step forward and take the blame himself even if it means the end of his life as baseball superstar? Should Matthew let him off the hook?

The Highlander is involved. So what do you think he's going to suggest? Look for a "surprise" ending.

Bruce A. Young returns as Carl Robinson. Eric McCormack of Will & Grace portrays Matthew McCormick (same name different spelling), and Eric Keenleyside is Trey Franks.

Glory Days (96504)

Ever notice how some people who become immortal really don't deserve the chance and never learn anything?

While playing poker during prohibition, DM notes young punk Johnny Kelly, a pre-immortal. When Johnny is "killed" in a gang slaying, DM attempts to teach the young man about what he is, and about the game. But Johnny doesn't listen. All he knows is that he can't be killed so he's off to kill his killers. Later, he decides to turn his skill into something that will make him money. He becomes a contract killer for the mob.

In the present he runs into Mac, and decides to kill the Highlander because he knows who he is, what he is, and he has seen his face. But Johnny doesn't play by the "rules" he shoots Mac first.

Meanwhile in the "other" story, Joe's high school sweetheart from Chicago just "happens" to walk into Joe's. And she wants a date. Our man Joe is oddly reluctant to go out on one. Seems Betsy doesn't know about his accident in 'Nam. All his other girlfriends over the years only knew him as he is, but Betsy knew him as he was; and he's afraid to ruin her memory of him. "At the prom, we were the football hero and the prom queen," he tells Mac. DM pushes Joe to meet with Betsy and tell her the truth.

Who we were, who we are, who we will always be… both stories reflect this thought. The writer does a good job of interweaving the two stories, so that the events of one reflect on the events of the other. Things put in motion because of one story, put in motion things in the other story line. This is one of the best stand-alone episodes in the series.

And Joe gets lucky.

Marcia Strassman is Betsy Fields and Ian Tracey is Johnny Kelly.

Dramatic License (96505)

Today we get the literary treatment, or at least the bodice ripper treatment. What if all the legends and stories about Duncan MacLeod were being fictionalized by a writer of trashy romance novels? A writer whose purple prose literally has Amanda agog with reading Blade of the MacLeods. All puns assumed to be in effect here.

This smoky-eyed Scot… this Duncan MacLeod!

It seems trashy novelist Carolyn Marsh has the inside scoop on a few of DM's adventures, and is splashing them all over the best-seller list (at least the one for trashy novels) and plans an entire series of books on her "fictional" hero. She wants to get it right, though and is not above blackmailing our hero to get him to appear with her at publicity events… maybe in a kilt?

When the truth finally comes out, it seems Carolyn is married to immortal Terrence Coventry whom she portrays as a villain in her novels. DM fears Coventry may be after Carolyn's head, or maybe his. Enter DM the marriage counselor.

Also look for the two ladies to go shopping with DM's credit card.and buy the most expensive ugly dress ever created.

Sandra Bernhard has fun romping through this lightweight episode as romance novelist Carolyn Marsh. Alistair Duncan is Terrence Coventry.

Money No Object (96506)

The last truly funny episode for a while.

Amanda is "kidnapped" by robber Cory Raines, one of her "partners in crime" from the "1926 Tour of the American Southwest" that she mentioned to Tessa in Season One. Yes, in 1926 she and Mac were between circus jobs when they'd run into immortal Cory. He convinced Amanda to go into the bank robbing business with him and convinced DM to dig them up whenever they happened to go out in a blaze of bullets ala Bonnie & Clyde. DM's exasperation at digging them up is one of the funnier moments. "Next time maybe I'll just leave him."

In the present Cory is still the same charmer, and he still is the immortal Robin Hood… giving his stolen money away to those who need it. Trouble is, this time he stole from the mob and they are out for his head.

Watch for AP to do his Dennis Berry impression as the French director in one scene as he attempts to locate Cory and Amanda. (Dennis Berry directed many of the series episodes.) This episode also shows what happens if an immortal is caught in an explosion--cartoon style. Look for blackened faces, rolling eyes and passing out. Also watch for a head-bump between AP and EG in one of the final scenes that is so real, it is real. The actors bumped heads on one take and it looked so good that the director left it edited in.

Also watch for RR to get run off the road. Againm slapstick and cartoon violence is the name of the episode.

This is one of my favorites of the "funny" episodes. Not as good as the ones with Fitzcairn, but close.

Nicholas Lea, who was in the Season Two episode The Fighter in a bit part, portrays immortal Cory Raines. Nick is better known to audiences as Krycheck a.k.a. "Rat Boy" on X-Files.

Haunted (96507)

How much of the personality of the defeated immortal becomes a part of the victor? And for how long?

This episode is a ghost story, and explores the above question. If immortals absorb the memories, knowledge, power, and skill of the defeated, how much of this stays with them? During his year on the road Richie took heads without really caring who they were. There is no clear indication of how many he took; just that he was making a name for himself by challenging almost every immortal he ran acrossm especially if they made him angry ("You don't want to make me angry")

When a friend of Mac's shows up at the dojo, a young widow whose immortal husband was recently killed, Richie finds himself oddly drawn to her and she is drawn to him. Jennifer believes her husband Alec Hill is trying to reach out to her across the void and urge her to avenge his death by asking DM to whack the SOB who killed him. DM agrees and heads out of town to kill immortal Gerard Kragen, who had once killed Alec Hill's first wife, and destroyed Alec for over a century until he'd met Jennifer.

Meanwhile, Richie looks after Jennifer, and their attraction to one another clearly grows. Joe remarks to Richie that he is playing with fire, especially since Richie is actually the SOB who killed her husband. Richie is dumb-founded, and then recalls the day. Evidently he'd gotten to Alec before Alec got to the sleazeball he was after. What will Jennifer do when and if she learns the truth? What will Duncan do when he learns he has gone after the wrong man?

Note… the opening sequence of this episode is reminiscent of Celine Dion's music video It's All Coming Back to Me Now.

Kathy Evison (of Seaquest DSV) is Jennifer. John Novack makes his third Highlander appearance, second as an immortal who loses to DM, as Gerard Kragen, and John Conway is Alec Hill. Lisa Butler, who was in The Colonel as Amanda's friend Melissa, among other small appearances in other episodes, has a small part as Alec's first wife Genevieve.

Little Tin God (96508)

If you were an immortal and came to life in front of a primitive people, would the temptation to play God become a reality?

In this case the answer is yes. In 1830 Peru, DM and his native guide were captured by a tribe of primitives who are led by their "god", immortal Gavriel Larca. Larca had been living among the Moche for some time, taking his place as the living embodiment of their god: "the decapitator". Evidently he was not the first immortal these people had seen. He sacrificed DM's guide who became part of a blood sacrifice that the people participated in. However the guide had a fever, and this fever was passed on to the Moche who died horribly as they had no resistance to outside illness. Larca was killed by his people for failing to protect them, and DM managed to get away.

In the present, young gospel singer Derek Worth is killed in a drive-by shooting. When he revives in the morgue, he is met by Larca claiming to be God. "God" has returned him to life so that he may kill the devil… Duncan MacLeod.

Once again, DM is caught without his sword and ends up facing three young immortals, including Derek Worth, all of whom obviously have no idea about the truth of the game nor what they truly are, but are intent on killing him. DM must convince them somehow of the truth of what they are and destroy their faith in their "god" in order to save them, save himself, and kill Larca.

One conversation in this episode is worth mentioning. Joe, Derek's old minister who is being recruited into the Watchers, and Duncan discuss whether Jesus Christ might have been an immortal. "It all comes down to faith." DM finally says.

Carl Robinson is mentioned in this episode, but does not appear.

Roger R. Cross (who appeared in X2 as a Secret Service Agent) is Derek Worth. Andrew Divoff, appearing for the second time in the series, portrays Larca. He was also Bryan Slade in Bad Day at Building A.

The Messenger (96509)

Methos returns!

Duncan: "Thought you were off finding yourself."

Methos: "Tibet is boring. Yak butter plays hell with the digestion."

This time DM is a bit angry with his ancient friend. It seems he's introduced himself to Richie and convinced the young man to give up fighting. Richie had earlier that day stopped DM from engaging in a fight with an old enemy, William Culbraith, a man whom DM had met during the Civil War. Culbraith was in charge on Andersonville, and had been responsible for inhumane treatment of prisoners.

"Oh… he's here," Methos smirks as he settles down with a beer.

"Who's here?" DM asks.

"The other one… the other Methos."

What better way to hide than to allow another immortal to go around using your name and have a huge target painted on his chest? "Hello, I'm Metho,… world's oldest man. Put down your swords and embrace peace."

When DM meets this "messenger" of peace he is intrigued, and can see why Richie is buying into this. The messenger's message is the same one Darius had tried to teach. But is it possible? Can the immortals end the game by simply laying down their swords and choosing not to fight? Richie gives his new sword back to Mac.

When Joe hears about this, he tells them that wherever this guy goes, his disciples end up dead. Will Richie be next? DM convinces Methos to tell Richie who he is, in order to convince Richie to be wary around this guy. He does so, then he goes one better.

Methos goes to meet "Methos" and then walks away with a lot on his mind.

"And after five thousand year, you think peace is the answer?" he asks the messenger.

"After five thousand years, can anyone see that it is not?"

Methos' face darkens as if he knows something, something we do not know as of yet.

The fabulous Ron Perlman (Vincent of TV's Beauty and the Beast portrays "The Messenger" while Peter Wingfield returns for the first of four episodes as Methos. William Culbraith is played by Robert Wisden.

NOTE: conversation in this synopsis is not word for word from the script.

The Valkyrie (96510)

Who has the right to pass judgment? Harking back to the Biblical story of Mary Magdeline: "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone" becomes something DM is forced to consider.

During WWII, DM, immortal friend Ingrid Henning and others became involved in the plot to kill Adolph Hitler. They were among those who helped plant the bomb in Hitler's bunker in an attempt to take out the Nazi leader. The plan, as we know, failed. As Hitler emerged from the bunker, convinced of his destiny, he faced Ingrid's gun. But she could not kill him; she was not a killer. She was the one shot dead.

Filled with remorse for not taking him out, filled with guilt that she could not kill this evil man who killed thousands, Ingrid spends the next fifty years becoming a trained assassin. She has recently killed a Russian dictator and now is in Seacouver, her sights set on presidential hopeful and neo-Nazi: Alan Wilkinson, Duncan tries to stop her.

He tries to remind Ingrid of what she once said to him, that killing isn't the answer, that for everyone we kill there are always more. But Ingrid is convinced that she must kill all dictators and possible dictators. "There must never be another Hitler" she tells him.

Interpol detective Nicholae Breslaw is pursuing her. He even interrogates DM at one time, attempting to discover how DM knows this assassin.

DM is faced with judging Ingrid. He understands her motives, he sympathizes with her reasons, but when innocents begin dying he knows she must be stopped.

A valkyrie in German/Norse mythology was a beautiful female, a shield-maiden, whose main job was to collect the souls of brave men who died heroically in battle and transport them to Valhalla to sit at Odin's side. Ingrid sees herself as a handmaiden to God, whose job is to dispense justice in his name.

Methos hovers around in this episode and drops dark comments about right, wrong, justice, and judgment.

Methos to DM: "Ingrid judged Wilkinson and you judged her."

DM: "And who judges me?"

Methos has no answer.

Peter Wingfield is Methos. Musetta Vander brings life to Ingrid Henning, while Jan Triska makes the first of two appearances in Highlander canon as Inspector Nicholae Breslaw. His other appearance will be in an episode of Highlander: The Raven.

Comes a Horseman (96511)

From his initial appearance on Highlander as Methos… the world's oldest man, Peter Wingfield kept adding shades of meaning to his lines that made the writers think… "There is more here than meets the eye." PW has also gone on the record as saying even he didn't always know what Methos was implying, but that it seemed "right" for his character.

Well in this episode, the writers and the actors finally reveal something about Methos' dark past; and the clues and innuendoes about what one learns in five thousand years, or who should sit in judgment on the crimes of immortals, suddenly come into clear focus.

While joking around about "Adam's" appearance on a game show, DM and Methos feel the presence of another immortal. True to character, Methos takes a powder and DM goes looking for the immortal. He finds him and recalls meeting Melvin Koren in 1867 Texas when DM was a scout with the Texas Rangers and Koren was a Commanchero whose gang of thugs criss-crossed the territory sowing death and destruction where they went. DM attempted to take Koren's head, but failed and ultimately lost track of him. Now Koren is back and DM wants him.

Pursuing him, DM finds instead immortal psychic, and former lover Cassandra (The Prophecy) who has become, since last we met her, a harridan focused on killing the immortal who first killed her, the immortal for whom she has had an overwhelming hatred forthree thousand years, the only surviving member of "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse."

"His name is Kronos and he was one of them!" she spits angrily

"The horsemen were myth!" DM tells her, but Cassandra disagrees and tells him the story of her life, her people, and her death.

Meanwhile Methos finds himself with a knife in his chest as Melvin Koren/aka Kronos locates him with the words that will live in Highlander lore: "Greetings, Brother!" It seems that Methos was once Kronos' right-hand man, his master planner, his companion in murder, rape, and general mayhem.

"I grew out of my angry adolescence long ago!" he tells Kronos to no avail. (Some adolescence! Methos was two thousand years old when he rode with Kronos!)

When Methos shows up to talk to DM about Kronos, Cassandra draws her sword and claims he is Methos, and that she will have his head. It seems her intelligence was wrong and a second horseman lives. DM holds her back while Methos escapes.

Note: Cassandra's watcher files a report at this time… she has overheard it all… and the Watchers now know Adam Pierson is Methos. This information is not in the episode… but is included on The Watcher Chronicles CD-ROM and on files included with the DVD's.

Joe attempts to calm the situation, but DM feels he needs to face Methos and get the truth. He does.

Originally spoken by Methos:

"I killed, but I didn't just kill fifty, I didn't kill a hundred . . . I killed a thousand. I killed ten thousand! And I was good at it. And it wasn't for vengeance. It wasn't for greed. It was because I liked it. Cassandra… was… nothing. Her village was… nothing. Do you know who I was? I was Death. Death. Death on horse. When mothers warned their children that the monster would get them, that monster was me. I was the nightmare that kept them awake at night. Is that what you want to hear? The answer is yes. Ooh, yes."

"We're through," murmurs a shocked DM, and Methos nods sadly in agreement.

Folks… this is likely the best episode in the series. It tears at all we know about these characters we have come to like and their relationship with one another. It turns everything on it's ear. After this… can anything ever be the same?

Traci Scroggins returns as Cassandra. Valentine Pelka makes the first of several appearances as Kronos. (He will also portray immortal Korda in The Raven.) Marcus Testory as Caspian and Richard Ridings as Silas round out the complement of "the horsemen."

For those curious: War, pestilence, famine, and the pale rider upon the pale horse--death were what the horsemen stood for.

One not to miss!

Revelation 6:8 (96512)

"So I looked, and behold, a pale horse. And the name of him who sat on it was Death, and Hades followed with him. And power was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword [war], with hunger [famine], with death [pestilence], and by the beasts of the earth." ~~The New King James Version

Methos has joined with his old companion Kronos… and is leading him on a quest to locate their lost brethren… Silas and Caspian. Once all four are together, Kronos hopes to reconstitute the "Horsemen" as a modern killing machine. He has developed a lethal virus, which he plans to unleash unless the world bows to his demands.

Methos secretly attempts to leave clues for MacLeod and Cassandra to find. Cassandra believes her hated enemy is leading them into a trap, but DM is not so certain. The flashbacks continue and we see how Cassandra once lived to please Methos but was ultimately betrayed by him… to insure his own survival.

Will Cassandra finally manage to kill her hated enemies? Will DM save the world from the lethal virus? Will Kronos and the horsemen ride? Will Methos reveal whether he is still the archetype of Death, or whether he has evolved into a modern man?

Adrian Paul directs this the 100th episode of the series. This second part is not quite as good as the set-up in part one, but it is still one of the finest episodes of the series. And the double quickening at the end set in an old WWII submarine base is explosive and makes one wonder at what happens to participants when quickenings occur so close to one another and so close in time.

As for who the horsemen represent? Methos is the pale rider--death, Kronos--pestilence, Silas--war, and Caspian--famine/the wild beast.

Guest stars: Peter Wingfield, Traci Scroggins, Valentine Pelka, Marcus Testory (and those tattoos on his head are real), and Richard Ridings continue their roles from part one.

The Ransom of Richard Redstone (96513)

A comic episode with James Bond overtones! After the high drama of the previous two episodes, the production staff wanted to have a romp. Unfortunately this episode falls flat. Perhaps because the previous episodes worked so well, and everyone was exhausted, this one while funny does not all hang together.

Richie Ryan has morphed into Richard Redstone, wealthy playboy. He has a "borrowed" jaguar, an extended line of credit at a gambling resort, and is pursuing babes while dressed in a "rented" tuxedo. Of course, he is doing all this by indicating his debts are covered by one Duncan MacLeod, a man whose credit rating is through the roof.

When RR is kidnapped by a down-on-her-luck young woman out to save the family chateau, DM gets involved. Seems he knows the young woman's family; he'd had some dealings with them decades ago, as well as with the current casino owner.

Watch for 1970's era Duncan, in a polyester leisure suit and a fright wig dancing horribly. Watch for RR handcuffed to a bed. Watch for DM sticking cotton in his mouth to appear older (Hey it worked for Marlon Brando in The Godfather.) Watch for… oh wait… don't watch.

This episode can be fun if you let it stand alone and don't expect too much. But in light of the previous episodes, it leaves much to be desired. This episode is a comic take on the very funny short story The Ransom of Red Chief by O. Henry which involves hapless kidnappers who get more than they bargain for when they kidnap the wrong child. The kidnappers are hapless. RR and DM are definitely more than they bargain for, but the ending falls flat.

The guest cast is forgettable, but the opening scene, of fast cars racing one another on a twisting road, and the music are a riot.

Have fun… or not.

Duende (96514)

This episode is included on the "Best of Highlander…" DVD collection, probably because of the final sword-fight and the amount of time and effort that went into it and into the flamenco dancing.

This episode grew out of Anthony de Longis' study of "the magic circle", a form of sword-fighting little known today. He came up with a story idea that allowed him to portray the villain of this episode, Otavio Consone, his second Highlander appearance; and allowed AP to show off his dancing skills. (He was a dancer before coming to Highlander.)

The extended flashback sequence is beautifully filmed and has a rich, almost dream-like quality to it. DM is in Spain and the student of Otavio Consone, who was himself a student of Juan Sanchez Villa Lobos Ramirez. DM falls in love with Theresa del Gloria, a young woman whom Consone wishes to marry. To save DM's life when he loses a battle to Consone, Theresa agrees to marry the Spaniard, although she does not love him. Years later when DM learns that she has died at Consone's hand, DM wants to fight him, but refrains as he learns his survival meant everything to Theresa. It was her last wish that DM survive.

That sets up the modern story and how DM finally challenges Consone in a battle that literally goes on for hours. It happens in a rainstorm and darkness overtakes them. It is a fabulous piece of filmmaking.

That said, this is not one of my personal favorites. There are several episodes I would have placed on the Best of... collection before placing this one, but I do recognize the skill and artistry which went into the filming of this episode.

Enjoy folks… it's a keeper!

Stone of Scone (96515)

This is the best comedic episode of the entire series and easily one of the best episodes of the series as a whole. This is one in which our beloved Hugh Fitzcairn teams up with DM and Amanda to pull off the theft of the fabled Stone of Destiny upon which all true Scots kings must step to be recognized!

By the way, who writes those episode quips for TV? Mine says DM discovers three hapless immortals have stolen the SoS. Hey wait a minute--DM IS one of the hapless immortals!

This episode always leaves me laughing! It is a crime it is not on the Best of HL DVD set! Hey TPTB: do a second set! Rectify this grievous error!

Stone of Scone is the first episode that is entirely set up as a flashback. Called… A Highlander Fable, it takes place entirely in the past and there is no modern frame.

In 1720, Mac is attempting to reclaim the stone for the Scots when he runs into Hugh Fitzcairn who is hoping to blow up Westminster Abbey and the King for the Catholics. In a golf game, Fitz cheats and DM loses a wager so that he agrees to help Fitz with his plan.

In 1950, the two are playing golf in Scotland with Amanda ( another time DM saw her and didn't tell Tessa about) and the truth of 1720 comes out. So Fitz, DM, and Amanda (who is under the mistaken impression that the stone is a precious jewel) band together to steal it. The Stone of Destiny was stolen in 1950, supposedly as a school prank and was broken. The writers put all of this into the episode to explain why we think it happened one way, when in fact it happened another way. The use of newsreel footage of the theft and the era is an added bonus.

Roger Daltrey, Elizabeth Gracen, and Adrian Paul have a romp with this one and their comic timing is impeccable. This is the only episode where all three appear in the same scenes. And watch for Michael Culkin as Bernie/Lord Bernard Crimmons… a riot. Truly a man who grew and changed with the times, but still recalls fondly his beginnings as the king's axe-man, and reminds Amanda of that fact.

Have fun with this one. I love this episode.

Forgive Us Our Trespasses (96516)

In this episode DM is called to task for his past crimes by a vengeful immortal. In an interesting turn of events, DM is being challenged by an immortal who sees our Boy Scout as the villain of the ages.

In previous episodes, it has been established that DM fought at the side of Bonnie Prince Charlie at the Battle of Culloden and helped the prince escape. Afterwards… angry at the killing of Scots civilians by the victorious English, he went on a killing rampage. He eventually was convinced that killing and revenge solve nothing and he moved on with his life.

For the third time writers revisit the Battle of Culloden and its aftermath. In Take Back the Night we had learned that after the battle, DM chose to attack English soldiers and to wreak vengeance on them before he comes to his senses with the help of the lovely Ceirdwyn.

In Through a Glass Darkly we learn of his eventual disenchantment with "Bonny Prince Charlie". Now an immortal who lived through those times, and who witnessed DM take a friend's head, is out for our hero's head, and DM seems to consider letting him take it.

The vengeful immortal is Steven Keane who was a close friend of one of the English lords that DM killed. He was also a student of Sean Burns who at one time convinced Keane to let revenge go. Now, hearing of Burn's death by DM, Keane seeks retribution, both for the Earl of Rosemont and for Sean Burns.

Enter Amanda and Methos who become involved in an attempt to protect Mac from himself. Amanda is a major player as she tries to convince Methos to get involved and save DM, and to convince DM that he should not just let himself be killed; that he is a "good" person and that he makes her a "better" person.

Following the "Horsemen" arc, one might think this is about DM forgiving Methos… uh…no.  It is about how Methos tries to save DM from himself when the Highlander realizes he has harmed innocents and feels he must pay the price. Darn that Boy Scout honor of his!

This episode is about guilt and forgiveness and the necessity of facing our shortcomings and our various evil deeds. In many ways, it is the perfect follow-up to DM's judging of first Ingrid in The Valkyrie and then of Methos and the others in the horsemen arc. He judged them guilty… now someone else judges him guilty. Does he kill him and go on with his life, or does he face the blade and sacrifice himself to pay the price?

Complicating his guilt is that Steven Keane was also a student and friend to Sean Burns, the immortal DM killed in Season Four while under the influence of a dark quickening. Sean Burns had done nothing wrong. He had extended the hand of friendship and DM does feel guilty at having killed his friend.

So this is a dark episode with the eventual message that maybe mercy and forgiveness should outweigh vengeance and "right". Methos does not judge others or himself for the actions of the past… and DM shouldn't either.

Season Five dealt a lot with judgment. In this episode someone else judges DM guilty and his Scots honor requires him to consider this point of view. Is our hero a villain? If a villain once, can a villain be redeemed?

This episode, following on the horseman arc, is the first re-appearance of Methos since DM's learning of his friend's past. The themes of judgment, forgiveness, and redemption play heavily in this episode. Enjoy!

Peter Wingfield and Elizabeth Gracen return as Methos and Amanda. Michael J. Jackson returns in flashback as Sean Burns, and Chris Larkin is Steven Keane.

The Modern Prometheus (96517)

I've always been a sucker for stories that borrow from and nudge against the literary world. That said, this episode does that with a bang.

DM meets rock star Byron who comes to Joe's blues club in Paris to hang out (Why? We are never told other than he just wants to hang out and listen to music)

When Byron enters he greets Methos as "Doc".

This episode finally gives us Methos flashbacks in a more recent time. Gotta love the hair! In the flashbacks we learn that as Dr. Adams, Methos had befriended George Noel Gordon, Lord Byron when he became immortal and partied with him in 1816 at the famous party where Mary Shelley became inspired to write Frankenstein: The Modern Prometheus. Byron was new to immortality and a a major literary talent. (Remember this is in the period where Methos has told DM that he was out of the game.}

In the present, Byron is still among us as a rock star (who may have also been Jim Morrison). Now his talent is passe and he is bored with life. How can he regain life and be once again Lord Byron… poet of the ages? Byron befriends a young musician friend of Joe's, but leads the young man into drugs and eventual death.

DM then believes Byron must die. Although the flashbacks belong to Methos, the modern story is DM's as he feels Byron has become a liability and has turned bad.

Methos asks DM to reconsider. Byron's loss will be the loss of the world… oh the poetry… the art… the songs that will never be written. BUT Methos accepts DM's decision and does not interfere. Nor does he judge the rightness or wrongness of DM's choice.

Things to look for:

1. Watch Byron's walk. The real Byron had a club foot and the actor does a good job of utilizing that aspect and even working it into his fight sequences.

2. Watch Methos as he mourns the loss of poetry unwritten, but accepts the necessity of the episode's outcome.

3. Once more we get a glimpse of what Season 6 might have been.

Lovely piece.

Peter Wingfield is Methos; Michel Modo makes a quick cameo as Maurice (Maurice we barely see you!); and Jonathan Firth is Byron. This episode was directed by Adrian Paul. Swordmaster for the series, F. Braun McAsh, appears to challenge Byron in one of the flashbacks as immortal Hans Kerschner. McAsh, by the way, wrote a story about Kerschner's past and one of his immortal students… Vlad Tepes. It's included in the short story collection An Evening at Joe's.

Archangel (96518)

This episode is one that half of the fans would deny while the other half might wish to throw a celebratory party over. This is part one of a three episode arc that takes DM into a very dark place where he is either insane or the dead walk the streets of Paris and he can no longer tell friend from foe.

We all know what's coming and it happensm but not before Richie tries to support and save his friend, Joe and Methos try to discover what's happening, and DM tries to discover the truth.

This was the season finale for Season Five, which was a short season by a couple of episodes, but Season Six will be even shorter.

This arc of stories was not popular with most fans and many deny they took place… a demented dream of DM's when he was in Sanctuary (Endgame reference).

The writers and producers continue to call this, however, one of the masterstrokes of the series in its attempt to shake things up and to suggest a reason for immortals to exist. i.e. To find a champion every thousand years who can defeat Ahriman, an ancient Zoroastrian demon who even Methos says is a myth.

This is the last Methos episode for a while. Our boy is smart and smart aleck, but he cannot help Mac as he and Joe are on the sidelines during the last confrontation, arriving just after it occurs.

The song Joe sings at the end of the episode is one Jim Byrnes wrote, called Twelve Questions. It was recently released as a recording on his Fresh Horses CD, available from Black Hen Music.

Peter Wingfield is Methos, Peter Hudson returns, not as Horton, but as Ahriman appearing as Horton, and Valentine Pelka gets to stalk around as the vision of Kronos in full horseman regalia.

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In the end, all shall be one

In the end, all shall be one.