Lois' Daily Planet

The Pretender

which aired on Saturday, May 16, 1998


The Pretender was created by Steven Long Mitchell & Craig W. Van Sickle

The series stars:
Michael T. Weiss as Jarod
Andrea Parker as Miss Parker
Patrick Bauchau as Sydney
Jon Gries as Broots
Jamie Denton  asMr. Lyle
Harve Presnell  asMr. Parker
Richard Marcus as Mr. Raines
Paul Dillon  as Angelo

The Pretender also stars (although not necessarily in every episode):

     Ryan Merriman (Young Jarod), Alex Wexo (Young Sydney), 
Ashley Peldon (Young Miss Parker),  Jonathan Osser (Younger Jarod)
 Sam Ayres (Sam the Sweeper), Willie Gault (Willie the Sweeper)
Pamela Gidley (Brigitte), Kelsey Mulroony (Debbie Broots)
 Zachary Brown (Young Kyle),  Jake Lloyd (Young Angelo/Timmy),
 Kim Myers (Jarod's mother, Margaret)
Jeffrey Donovan (Jarod's brother, Kyle), Marisa Parker (Jarod's sister, Emily)

These are EPISODES #43 and 44 - the season finale for season 2
  Written By: Steven Long Mitchell & Craig W. Van Sickle and Directed By:  Fred K. Keller

Jarod opens the envelope that he found in Mr. Fenigor's safe deposit box at the Dover Town Bank.  He finds a key, a half burned business card from the Nugenesis Family Group with the numbers 12-072463-01 on the back, and a Telex that says, "The Boy."  The address on the Telex is 240 Rte 1, Charlevoix, Michigan.  The word, "Prodigy" is handwritten in red on the Telex and circled.  Jarod finds that the address on the telex used to contain a house that his parents rented. 

As Jarod Spock talks to Dr. Nicholas Haring, the head of the Nugenesis fertility clinic in Atlanta, Georgia, and with Dr. DeWitt, with whom he will be working, a custodian pays close attention to the conversation.  Blood samples from a couple trying to become pregnant, Mr. and Mrs. Brewster,  are given to the lab technican, Jeremy.  Dr. Boris DeWitt used to be Nicholas Haring's partner, but he passed away and Haring now runs Nugenesis by himself.  The Dr. DeWitt with whom Jarod will be working is Boris DeWitt's daughter.

Jarod tries to access the file number that was listed on the back of the business card in Nugenesis' computer system, but he his stopped by Jeremy, who tells him that he's not allowed access to that room.  Dr. DeWitt enters and says that it is "Uncle Nick's policy" and even she isn't exempt from it.  She tells Jarod that confidentiality is a big issue at Nugenesis - they don't even use patient's names - only code numbers.  Jarod will have to go through Jeremy for anything he needs.

Later that night, Jarod sees a nurse taking a blood sample from a child's finger.  He has a flashback to a nurse doing the same thing to him when he was a child.  Jarod sees Dr. Haring enter the room and starts to continue down the hall.  He is stopped by the custodian, who tells him that he needs a special pass to go down "corridor 7."  Jarod waits until he sees Dr. Haring leaving and goes back to the room where he saw the child getting the blood test.  He sees blocks on a table and flashes back to someone giving him the same kind of blocks and telling him that he'd like him to solve a problem.

In his office, Jarod receives a FAX from Angelo - it's a picture of Mrs. Markham's third grade class from the Avalon Elementary School which came from Rainess office.  On the bottom of the picture, Angelo has written one word - "Prodigy."  Jarod says, "Oh my God.  They're doing it again.  They're going to take another child."

A phone call to Sydney confirms that recent events at The Centre indicate that "the pretender program" may indeed be starting up again.  Sydney also tells Jarod that he thinks that Angelo may hold some answers.  When Jarod leaves his office, the custodian goes in and looks through Jarod's papers.  He sees the picture that Angelo sent and a picture of Jarod's mother.

When Jarod tries again to input the number from the back of the card, the custodian interrupts him, telling him that if he's looking for information, he's going about it the wrong way and he's going to get caught.  Jarod asks him why he should trust him.  The custodian pulls the picture of Jarod's mother out of his pocket and says, "because your Mother did."

The custodian tells Jarod that he's been working at Nugenesis for over 30 years.  He says that Jarod's parents stayed there for over 6 months, trying to get pregnant.  Jarod's mother sent him a picture of Jarod, after he was born.  He says there was a lot of "weird stuff" going on down corridor 7 - testing of children.  He told Dr. Boris about it and Dr. Boris paid him to keep quiet.  Then Dr. Boris put an end to it.  A few years later, he saw Jarod's mother again.  She told him that her little boy had been taken.  Dr. Boris died, then, a few months ago, the weird stuff started happening again - down corridor 7.  Jarod shows him the picture that Angelo sent.  The custodian says that it's a local elementary school.  Jarod says that one of the children in that picture is going to be taken - just like he was.  Jarod tells the custodian that he may need his help to stop it.  The custodian says that he owes Jarod and his mother that much.

The custodian takes Jarod into the basement and tells him that if Dr. Boris had the information Jarod needs anywhere, it would be stored down there.  They find a safe, but it takes a key to open it.  The key in the envelope that was in Mr. Fenigor's safe deposit box fits and opens the safe.  Inside, Jarod finds a reel of film that has the same number on it that is on the back of the Nugenesis card.  He also finds the red files - one of which also matches the number on the card.   Jarod opens his file.  It's a medical file with no personal information at all.  The line that says "destination" has the rest of it blacked out.  The reel of tape only shows a young Jarod solving the problem with the blocks from the room upstairs - the answer is "pi times the square root of 931, divided by the radius of the circle."

Jarod is disappointed.  There seems to be no usable information in anything that he found.  The custodian remembers that Jarod's parents were named Margaret and Charles.  He also tells Jarod that they may not be his biological parents.  Dr. Boris headed up the adoption part of Nugenesis and Dr. Nick headed up the conception part.  The fact that Dr. Boris had Jarod's files might have meant that he was adopted.  The custodian finds a piece of paper in the red files that has the word "Oakview" written on it, along with the phone number, 555-6507.  He tells Jarod that the old Oakview Lodge, near Stone Mountain, is where his parents used to stay while they were at Nugeneis.  Maybe there's more information there.

Jarod goes to the Oakview Lodge at Stone Mountain, Georgia.  He's stopped at gunpoint by the innkeeper.  Jarod says that he'd settle for a "no vacancy" sign.  The man apologies and introduces himself as Louis - he's the owner.  Jarod shows Louis the picture of his mother and Louis immediately says, "You must be baby Jarod" and tells Jarod how his father saved him, when he was a youngster and broke through the frozen lake.  He tells Jarod that it's funny - but he doesn't look like either of his parents.  Then he takes Jarod to the cottage where his parents used to stay.  Louis says that Jarod's dad loved the view from the cottage and Louis used to call his dad "Major Charles" because of his air force uniform.

Jarod sits on the porch of the cottage his parents used and watches the sun come up - just as they did.  Later, Jarod "Kotter" is the substitute teacher at the Avalon Elementary School's third grade class.  Jarod tells the class that they are going to start by dividing into small groups, but is interrupted by a little girl named Ari, who tells them that they always start with the pledge of allegiance.  Jarod tells Ari to go ahead and lead it, which she does.  While the children are pledging, Jarod steals a look at the emergency numbers for the children and sees that there are 3 children that have Dr. Nicholas Haring at Nugenesis listed as their doctor: Davy Simpkins, Ari Thompson and Albert Williams.  Jarod divides the children up into groups - putting the three Nugenesis children at one table together.  He gives them the blocks from Nugenesis and asks them to solve the problem that he was given as a child.  Davy Simpkins wants to know why they can't cut out dinosaurs like the other kids.  Jarod looks out the blinds and notices Jeremy, the lab technican from Nugenesis walking up to the school.  Jarod doesn't answer the question - just tells the class to work quietly for a moment and leaves the room.  He watches Jeremy give his daughter her lunch box and then leave.  Jarod heaves a sigh of relief and goes back to his class.  One of the Nugenesis children has solved the problem correctly.  When Jarod asks which one, they each point to the other, laugh and run off to do other things.

Jarod is at home at the cottage.  He circles the pictures of the three children who might be the next pretender.  He still doesn't know which one it is.  There is a knock at his door - Angelo has arrived.  They hug each other and then Angelo tells Jarod, "I got here as quick as I could."  Jarod is amazed and delighted to find the treatments working so well.

Angelo thanks Jarod for helping him to be "Timmy" again.  Jarod tells Angelo that Jarod's parents stayed in this room, a long time ago, and now it seems to Jarod like it's himself for which he is searching, not his parents.  Angelo wonders if he'll ever know his parents.  Jarod tells him that he's in the red files too - there are answers - they just have to find them.  Angelo reminds Jarod that he's "Timmy" now.  Jarod gives Angelo/Timmy the blocks that the children at school used and tells him that if he could just feel something - they would know which of the children The Centre wants.  Angelo/Timmy tries, but tells Jarod that "Timmy feels nothing."  Jarod understands.  A cuckoo clock chirps the hour and Timmy says that it's time for his treatment.  He gets out the medication and injects himself.  As he dabs up a bit of blood from the puncture wound the needle left, Jarod flashes back to the fact that someone took his blood as a child - then he saw them testing another child at Nugenesis.  His thoughts are interrupted by Timmy playing an even better version of "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" on the piano.  Jarod smiles at Timmy, then the interrupted thought gels and he says, "We're all special - because of what's in our blood."

The custodian hands Jarod small, color coded, vials of blood for each of the children.  Jarod asks him how he got past Jeremy and the custodian tells him that there is nothing as invisible as a man with a mop.

The next day, when Mr. and Mrs. Brewster find out the disappointing news that they are not pregnant, Jarod tells Dr. Haring that he has found three candidates for egg donors.  Dr. Haring has Jarod give the blood samples to Jeremy for immediate analysis.  Jarod follows Jeremy to his lab and watches him call Dr. Haring after looking at the blood samples.  Jeremy tells Dr. Haring that there is something there that he should see.

Dr. DeWitt finds Jarod standing outside of Nugenesis and tells him that none of the samples were good donors for Mrs. Brewster, but one of them is a perfect match for a project that she is heading up.  She gives Jarod the vial that is green color coded and tells them that she needs the contact number for that donor, right away.  As soon as she leaves, Jarod checks his file and sees that the vial that was coded green belonged to Davy Simpkins.

Jarod and Angelo go to the address that is listed for Davy Simpkins and find that Mr. and Mrs. Watanabe live there.  Mrs. Watanabe tells Jarod that they were only Davy's foster parents and that child placement just picked him up because they found him a permanent home.  She says that Davy called the man who picked him up "the snowman" because of his white hair.  Jarod recognizes the description ... Raines' cleaner, Gar.  Jarod and Angelo rush to the county air strip, to try to catch Gar before he can take off with Davy.  But they are too late and arrive just in time to see the plane flying away ...

Jarod discovers The Pledge of Allegiance! 

Guest Stars:   Amir Aboulela (Gar), John Beasley (???), Robert Curtis Brown (???), George Coe (Dr. Nicholas Haring), Eleanor Comegsys (Nurse), Keene Curtis (Mr. Fenigor), Nancy Everhard (Dr. Cynthia deWitt), Daniel Hansen (Albert Williams), Denice Kumagai (Mrs. Watanabe), Jake Lloyd (???), Robert Mortimer (???), Haley Joel Osment (Davy Simpkins), Kim Robillard (???), Robert Ruth (Worker), Lauren Schaffel (Ari Thompson), Caryn & Kevin West (Twins), Dan Wilson (Worker) and Rachel Winfree (Realtor)

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