215 The Running Man

This could be one of the worst WMD threats our country has faced …

Summary: The theft of a DNA synthesizer from CalSci has the FBI searching for terrorist group before it can be used as a biowarfare tool.

Original air date: February 3, 2006 (US)

Written by:
Ken Sanzel

Directed by: Terrance O’Hara

Opening numbers:

10,000: Meters
12.9: M.P.H.
1: Finish line
22:37:10 : Minutes

Family Concepts (character development):

  • Margaret Eppes (nee Mann) was a lawyer and gifted musician and composer.
  • Margaret met Alan while she was working as an intern for a tenant’s rights group and he was working for a housing developer
  • Margaret had an offer to go to Vienna for her music
  • Alan went to grad school
  • Don and Charlie both took piano lessons from a Mrs. Petri when they were children
  • David grew up avoiding gangs to finish high school
  • Alan is a fisherman
  • Rob Morrow plays the piano in the last scenes*

*According to Cheryl Heuton

Episode Quotes:

  • Colby: Great, so we get to search the Mohave Desert.
  • Megan [to Charlie]: I’m so hopin’ you have one of those cute little analogies for this.
  • Charlie: With a little math and a lot of luck, we can determine where the stone began it’s journey.

Episode Synopsis:

Ron Allan is a track star and far ahead of his peers as a sophomore at CalSci; he is also one of Larry’s interns for the LIGO project Larry is working on.  When he goes to set up calculations for a DNA sequence, he interrupts a robbery of the DNA sequencer.

The FBI is called in to investigate as the sequencer can be used as a bio-weapon to weaponize viruses.  Their investigation is pointing to an inside connection by someone who has amassed a wealth of knowledge on the DNS sequencer, biometric iris scanners, and other equipment, someone like Charlie Eppes, or more to the point, Ron Allan.

Larry is incensed that the FBI would be investigating one of his star pupils and someone Larry personally likes and admires.  He is therefore stunned when David finds out that Ron isn’t who he says he is, that he stole the identity of Ron Allan and is now missing.

Charlie takes a trip down memory lane looking at old papers he’d written when Larry comes upon a series of composition books by Margaret Mann, Charlie’s mother.  When Charlie shows the books to Alan he and Don discover their mother was a gifted musician and composer, but gave up music to follow a career in law.

Thinking about waves and ripples, Charlie does some fact finding on his own and discovers “Ron Allan” has enrolled in at least three other prestigious schools over the past ten years.  Further digging by the FBI, turns up that Ron Allan is really Wesley Shriner from Wheaton Illinois.

Megan thinks he’s planning one last big heist to prove he’s not merely average and forgettable.  Larry realizes what Wesley is after is the sapphires from the LIGO project.  Wesley is caught breaking into the LIGO tunnel with three others and is arrested.

Last scenes, Don comes to the house to find seemingly Alan and Charlie out; he sees Margaret’s composition book on the table and starts playing her pieces.  Alan and Charlie are in the garage talking about Margaret and hear the piano music coming from the house.