04 February 2015

+JMJ+

Early Edition: Weather Report

If you read the news story, you'll see that it actually has nothing to do with the headline--LOL!

We can't really blame Gary for wanting to stay indoors all throughout this episode. The temperature has plummeted to nearly 30 below zero and the day's emergencies don't really seem that urgent. It's not just the cold making him rationalise: a pedestrian who breaks his leg and a woman who recovers after inhaling smoke in an apartment fire truly aren't that serious. There are also things that blow up, pets that get hurt, and DIY handymen who get some nasty--but not fatal--shocks . . . but none of it is a big enough deal to make Gary feel bad about literally phoning it in. So why does he still get the sense that The Paper wants him to be out and about?

Hmmmm. Perhaps all the people who accuse him of having a "hero complex" after he forces help on them that they neither want nor need are right.


Oh, the things we miss when we're not paying attention . . .

But would those unimpressed others have said that to him if they had known that some invisible power had found him fit to receive tomorrow's news today? Probably not. Had the choice been up to them, they might not even have picked him--and they would have been wrong. It was a higher wisdom, with sharper sight, that chose Gary and all his quirks. So if he can't shake the feeling that The Paper wants him out there, his hunch is still greater than all our common sense.

Of course, the catch is that he himself has a limited vision of how little things fit into the big picture, and he barely manages to put two and two together before it's too late.

The twist in this story is so subtle that at first it seems to be a plot hole. If there was someone in some real trouble, why couldn't The Paper have told Gary about it immediately, instead of sending him on a wild goose chase all over both town and the phone book? I wondered that, not realising it was my turn to be myopic; and only during my second viewing did I finally see the answer, brilliantly embedded in exactly the sort of scene you'd I'd overlook. Sometimes The Paper can't tell Gary about things immediately, but needs him to clear the path for the message first. But if he didn't have his "hero complex," he'd never clear that path. In the end, it all fits.


Your Turn to Be the Hero: What do we do about people who need help but really don't want it?

6 comments:

Jenny said...

I loved this tv series. I never thought Gary had a complex but I do remember that no one ever listened to him and I would have just given up if I were him. Which is sadly what I do now. People just don't want to hear it.

Enbrethiliel said...

+JMJ+

I don't think he has a complex, either, but there is definitely something in his character, which we can call a "hero complex" for lack of a better term, that makes him the best possible person to receive The Paper.

Whatever it is, I don't have it, either. Like you, I tend to cut my losses and give up. =/

Itinérante said...

A show I know!! That feels like a super achievement!! hehe
Answering the question: I pour my heart in prayer for them... so far it worked ^^

Enbrethiliel said...

+JMJ+

Itinerante, I've finally added "Early Edition" tags to all the posts about the show. So if you want to look at the rest of my "episode guides," it will be easier for you to find them. I hope to get the next post up for you and everyone else who remembers this show soon. =)

I also turn to prayer a lot, but while I have great faith that it is working, I can't really see any results. (That last sentence was redundant, aye? LOL!)

Brandon said...

This one was a good one -- not as fun as some others, but better thought out. And the message itself is a good one: sometimes the reason for spending so much energy getting the obvious little things out of the way is that this is a way the non-obvious big things can become obvious.

Chuck does well in this episode, too, and this episode does a better job than a lot of other episodes showing his friendship with Gary as a real friendship -- Chuck may be self-centered and annoying, and constantly exasperating to Gary, but he really and truly is a friend.

Enbrethiliel said...

+JMJ+

I've already seen the next episode, in which Chuck also plays a big role, and it reinforced the idea first planted by this one: that another reason why The Paper chose Gary is that he is friends with Chuck, who tips the scales in his own mysterious way. We often think of vocations as an individual thing, but our loved ones' help and influence can't be written out of the equation!