Thursday, July 09, 2009

Remote Rewind: Testing the Water

When we last left Sully and Michaela, he was lusting over her from afar, but this episode brought them a few steps closer to realizing their feelings. It all started when folks began showing up at Dr. Mike's clinic with a bad case of the stomach aches. At first, Michaela was puzzled as to the source. She tried to find a link between the victims, but kept coming up short. They all seemed to have different lifestyles. She suspected the water, but they had different sources (creek versus wells). She soon discovered that those with wells had partaken in a little moonshine from Happy Walker's still and Happy (who, as it turns out, wasn't very happy or very alive for that matter) uses the water from the creek to make his moonshine. It also just so happened that the local mining company was set up along the creek. Michaela suspected that the mining company was dumping mercury-filled waste into the creek causing those who drank from it to get mercury poisoning. But, she couldn't prove it and the mining company wasn't about to let her on their land to find out for sure. It turns out that mercury, in large amounts, can kill you, so Michaela was bound and determined to ascertain the cause of the poisoning and to stop the people responsible.

Enter Sully, a testing kit and an interesting adventure into the wilderness with the two of them alone. There's a great line before they embark on this little fact-finding mission from Miss Olive. Sully was completely against Michaela going along with him (because he believed she would "slow him down"), but she insisted that she be there to conduct the test at the source in order to get accurate results. When she tells Olive that Sully doesn't want her to go along, Olive suggests that Sully is "afraid to be alone with you." It's a loaded line and you can tell that it doesn't quite sit well with Michaela and this sorta sets the tone for the trip. Once in the wilderness together things got more interesting. Michaela, being a girl from the big city who hasn't fully acclimated yet to her new rugged surroundings, brought all sorts of useless "junk" on the trip (a brush, mirror, etc.) and Sully gave her a hard time. Later, she was able to use the mirror to distract a snake and give Sully the necessary time to kill it before it struck him. She immediately told him, "Handy little piece of junk, huh?"

After the snake incident, they learned to depend on each other a bit more. At one point, the mining company spoted them and started shooting (as per their sign at the entrance to their property: Trespassers will be shot). In an attempt to flee, Michaela fell and broke her arm making her journey even more difficult. They ended up taking to the water to escape the gun shots and this, combined with the broken arm, led to the famous "buttons scene." After making it safely out of the water, the two stripped down (to their undergarments -- this is the 1870s) and dried their wet clothes by the fire. They stayed on opposite sides of a tree for privacy, but Michaela soon found it much too difficult to button her own shirt and had to ask Sully to do it for her. They shared "a moment" (one of many as I've previously mentioned) and the groundwork for their future relationship was officially laid. It was the first point in which they both realized that they might not be able to stop that speeding train after all, but they were both hell bent on delaying it for as long as possible. But, we have a few more milestones to cover before we get to that part of the story.

Feeling nostalgic for Dr. Mike, Sully and the rest of the residents of Colorado Springs? Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman: The Complete Series is now available on DVD.

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