orockthro: George with glasses and "NERD" written on her forehead (Default)
orockthro ([personal profile] orockthro) wrote in [community profile] pofinterest_chat2013-10-29 07:59 pm

Episode Discussion 3x06

Let's talk about tonight's episode, 3x06 Mors Praematura! Are you excited? I am excited. 

Spoilers abound!

Additionally, there will be live chat as the episode airs on the IRC chat channel. (#poichat on the channel Slashnet)
pendrecarc: Person of Interest: Shaw of my heart, shaw in blue outline (Shaw of my heart)

[personal profile] pendrecarc 2013-10-30 02:08 am (UTC)(link)

I've really got nothing coherent. :)
rike_tikki_tavi: cuddle pile of mongooses (Default)

[personal profile] rike_tikki_tavi 2013-10-30 07:45 am (UTC)(link)
Yay, show is back. I'm so happy last week was not a fluke. Now lets hope that they got all their clunkers out of the system early and the rest of the season is going to be awesome.
subluxate: Sophia Bush leaning against a piano (Default)

[personal profile] subluxate 2013-10-30 09:17 am (UTC)(link)
I LOVE how good this ep was. I really love that we couldn't have guessed what the title referred to--the premature "death" of Jason Greenfield.

I also really want to know what Harold's, "And your choice of pronoun, illuminating," comment to Root regarding the Machine means. I know we talked about the Machine's gender earlier this season; are we going to see more about it?

Mostly, I'm glad the season's found its feet. Hopefully it stays on them.
rike_tikki_tavi: cuddle pile of mongooses (Default)

[personal profile] rike_tikki_tavi 2013-10-30 09:49 am (UTC)(link)
I think in some way the episode title could also be about the premature death of the Machine, that Vigilence is trying to bring on. And how much do I love that the Machine is collection code monkeys to prevent that, cause nobody can tell me that that's not what Jason's rescue was about.

I'm pretty sure Harold is still seeing the Machine as an it. If he saw her as a person, he wouldn't cut her access to Root quite so blithely.
subluxate: Sophia Bush leaning against a piano (Default)

[personal profile] subluxate 2013-10-30 12:01 pm (UTC)(link)

I think Harold compartmentalizes too much to realize the effect isolating Root from the Machine would have on the Machine. He said it before: "You call it a life, I call it a machine, but the truth is somewhere in the middle." ("God Mode") Then he goes on to talk about how it looked out for him and so on--and so he overrode the Machine's instincts for what he saw as the greater good, much as he sees isolating Root from the Machine as part of the greater good. But it's not for the good of the Machine, and perhaps ultimately not good for the world (depending on what, exactly, happens to the Machine without Root recruiting further analogue assets. If Decima or Control manages to truly break into the Machine...).

rike_tikki_tavi: cuddle pile of mongooses (Default)

[personal profile] rike_tikki_tavi 2013-10-30 02:32 pm (UTC)(link)
Re: Decima or Control breaking into the Machine

Harod definitely has too much trust in his own programming powers. Sooner or later somebody will break his code and then what? That would actually make for an interesting episode, Harold encountering an IT-Problem that he cannot code his way out of in 5 seconds flat.

It's weird for me that Harold can see that the Machine is more than just a machine, but still will not explore the possibility of him having created a true AI. I'd think he'd be all over it, out of pure curiosity if nothing else.
hedda62: Harold Finch, half in shadow, text: Oh, Mr. Finch (finch)

[personal profile] hedda62 2013-10-30 03:14 pm (UTC)(link)
There's a really interesting article in the latest Atlantic about Douglas Hofstadter and the divide between his thinking about true AI - machines that actually think - and the results-oriented programming that the industry has developed into, where AIs are created to do one task really well but not to actually simulate human thought. I know next to nothing about this, but while reading I couldn't help thinking of Harold and wondering if he thinks he's in the second camp while really being part of the first.

It's like... he made the Machine to do this one (extremely complicated) thing, and oh, it does this other thing too, but he doesn't want to think he created more than a taskmaster (or mistress), something that can evolve. It is actually pretty scary.
rike_tikki_tavi: cuddle pile of mongooses (Default)

[personal profile] rike_tikki_tavi 2013-10-30 03:37 pm (UTC)(link)
I'll have to read that article tonight, thanks for the link.

It might very well be denial for Harold about what he has created. I just keep flashing back to Harold playing tag with the Machine in the early days. It seemed more like playing tag with a kid than testing a computer program. Also, when he gave the Machine a way to move itself to protect itself from Decima, that was pretty far removed from it's original task. But then, parents often don't want to acknowledge that their kids are growing up. Probably something similar here.
enemyofperfect: a spray of orange leaves against a muted background (Default)

[personal profile] enemyofperfect 2013-10-31 09:29 am (UTC)(link)
Oh my gosh, best article, thank you for linking. And yes, this is exactly why I spent the first season assuming that the Machine had neither comprehension nor consciousness, despite my dilettante's fascination with AI: the one thing more improbable than the idea that Finch could single-handedly build something as vast and infallible as the Machine was the idea that in the process of building it, he accidentally created a mind, and didn't notice. That would be like... I don't know... like trying to find a better flu vaccine, and then ignoring the fact that you'd actually stumbled on a cure for death. It's a completely different category of thing, many orders of magnitude more impressive, and you'd think the difference would be noteworthy.

But it really is frightening, to think about this world-spanning sentience watching all of us, predisposed to think that intervention is sometimes justified, and for the first time having full freedom to decide when, and why, and how. I'm extremely fond of the Machine, but the power imbalance here is pretty profound. And this is without even touching on the fact that recognizing the Machine as a person would mean recognizing the cruelty of the measures Finch took in an attempt to... avoid unleashing a god upon the world, basically, I guess. If god is what we call a person with powers on this scale.

I'm pretty sure he knows what the Machine is, or is becoming; he wouldn't be so worried if he didn't. "The trouble with children -- you never know how they're going to turn out."
hedda62: Harold Finch in his HAT (hat baby)

[personal profile] hedda62 2013-10-30 12:50 pm (UTC)(link)
Oh, I loved it. I loved Root's sense of mission, and her almost-ease at being used as a component piece in a larger work (there's perhaps an analogy here to an idea of "machine"), and Shaw... pretty much doing the same thing, once she was convinced that there was a point to going along. The two of them together were deliciously efficient. And I'm glad we found out a little more about Laskey, and despite there being very little Fusco in the episode he was there in spirit, when Laskey had to bury his friend.

Also, the Vigilance plot is shaping up to be something worthwhile, and there were actual continuity points with 3.02, and ooh, the Machine actively protecting her own interests and saving people and keeping Harold in the dark.

And speaking of Harold, those last few moments gave me chills; that's the Michael Emerson I've been looking for. This season may be where Utter Bastard Harold shows himself. (That may be what they were going for with Shaw, but Nitpicky Victorian Aunt Harold is not the same thing.)

In summation: YES.
rike_tikki_tavi: cuddle pile of mongooses (Default)

[personal profile] rike_tikki_tavi 2013-10-30 02:20 pm (UTC)(link)
Ha! Now I want somebody to call Harold a nitpicky victorian aunt to his face. The outraged sputtering would be well worth it.

The Vigilance plot does look promising, but I'm surprised the Decima threat seems to have vanished from the face of the earth. And the Vigilance head honcho needs to learn from the fate of countless Bond villains. Endless monologueing is not healthy in his line of work.

hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)

[personal profile] hedda62 2013-10-30 03:07 pm (UTC)(link)
They might... have given themselves too many villains? I just have this image of all of HR and Decima and Control and Vigilance and possibly though probably not Elias and Scarface all advancing menacingly - and then all trying to squeeze into one crowded doorway to get at Team Machine. (And what about Mysterious British Spy-Guy from "Critical"? What happened to him?)

I think the Vigilance people should handwrite threatening letters with quill pens, and be as long-winded as they like.
rike_tikki_tavi: cuddle pile of mongooses (Default)

[personal profile] rike_tikki_tavi 2013-10-30 03:29 pm (UTC)(link)
Or maybe Vigilance is secretly being controlled by Decima. It certainly would be a good way for Decima to flush out Team Machine. I do like that they have villains that operate on different plains of threat. It makes life harder for the writers and sometimes one misses ones favorite bad guy but it keeps things interesting.

Mysterious British Spy-Guy can show up again any time. I like Julian Sands. Unfortunately I think his was a one-off episode.
enemyofperfect: a spray of orange leaves against a muted background (Default)

[personal profile] enemyofperfect 2013-10-31 10:05 am (UTC)(link)
So very much yes at the ease with which Root is accepting her role in the Machine's plans. I guess she did kick off their relationship with a trust fall....

The thing that threw me a little about the otherwise awesome Vigilance continuity is that, weren't they against all surveillance, not just the state-sponsored flavor? My hope is that the show just decided to foreground that aspect for this episode, since it was the government rather than corporations that our various protagonists had to maneuver around.

But yeah, this episode. Yeah.
aprilvalentine: (Reese and Finch walking)

[personal profile] aprilvalentine 2013-10-30 05:10 pm (UTC)(link)
I loved the episode! This is how I thought Shaw would be used as a regular in the first place and she and Root were awesome. The show has no fear of the femslash do they? Too bad they've seemingly felt a need to downplay the rinch vibe though. But this ep brought back some great concern for Harold from Reese and Reese got to be his badass self again too. And Laskey finding out how really bad HR can be -- priceless.
aprilvalentine: (Reese Finch bomb vest)

[personal profile] aprilvalentine 2013-11-01 01:13 pm (UTC)(link)
And I wouldn't say Rinch is too downplayed, though.

True, they have a dog together and Finch bought Reese the fabulous loft but... this season? I've been wondering whether they are actually downplaying that relationship on purpose. But with Shaw out of earshot, in Mors Prematura, he was a little freer to show his feelings for Finch so that's my rationalization for any future lack in that department in upcoming eps.
hedda62: Ben Linus, well-bruised (bruised ben)

[personal profile] hedda62 2013-10-30 11:14 pm (UTC)(link)
They've both been zip tied by Root!

I was thinking exactly that! It's gotta bring people together, having been kidnapped by the same ambiguously evil woman. Though I think Shaw enjoyed it a LOT more than Finch did.

Also, the Machine's personal army, oh yes this. (You may be understandably comparing Finch to Ben Linus, but I bet it's the Machine who has the chutzpah and the organizational skills to put together a similar network. I mean, Finch could, but he's too private a person. *g*)
enemyofperfect: a spray of orange leaves against a muted background (Default)

[personal profile] enemyofperfect 2013-10-31 09:38 am (UTC)(link)
nothing (not even a benevolent god machine lady savior) should go unchecked

I completely agree, I'm just -- not sure how much leverage Finch has against the Machine at this point, aside from what the Machine chooses to give him?

Like, I honestly think the main constraint the Machine is laboring under here is the very fragility of human life. Freeing Root could be as simple as calling in an anonymous (maybe slightly strange-sounding) tip that a woman's being held prisoner in an abandoned library; it's just that doing that would also put Finch and Reese in an astonishing amount of danger.

Cheerful thoughts! :D