Lie to Me Review: "Pied Piper"

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The Lightman Group does series work.

Viewers were reminded of this on "Pied Piper," as Lightman took a second look into a case that resulted in a man getting the death penalty.

The tension throughout episode was thick enough to cut with a knife and I loved it. After Kevin Wilkie threatened to sue the Lightman Group, we got to see exactly how each member of the team responded. I found it interesting that Gillian and Ria both stood fast and were willing to be loyal to the end, while Eli was discussing how it would be better to jump ship before it went down.

Is it just me or is Eli not only being under-used this season, but is also the weakest character on the show? I really liked him in the first season when he was used a lot more. I was trying to think back to any episodes this season that featured Eli on the “front burner” like we have had with Gillian and Ria - none are coming to mind.

The closest we have had was the interaction with Eli and Lightman after Emily kissed him in "Bullet Bump." But that was fairly minor.  Even Lightman talking to him about “jumping ship” tonight was a conversation held while Lightman was walking out. 

Into a Mental Hospital

I am hoping that they either develop Eli’s character along further or maybe replace him with someone with a bit more depth. Replacing him would give Ria a chance to be the “master” instead of the “pupil," so it could make for some interesting dynamics.

On the flip side, Emily has grown the most. It seems like nearly every week we learn a bit more about her and see her stepping slowly into the adult world. Her conversation with Lightman about why he married Zoe and that Zoe had been pregnant with Emily before they got married was incredibly moving.

When you mix that with her light hearted banter about wanting her own car and the acknowledgement from Gillian and Zoe that Emily is the only one who can get through to Lightman, the result is one of my favorite characters on TV. 

However, my favorite part of tonight’s episode was Lightman in the psych ward. First, he so easily convinced the doctor to put him in; secondly, he needed help getting out. We all know Lightman can be a bit insane at time and this time it certainly bit him in the rear.

Of course, it was also fun seeing Zoe blackmail him for her help getting out.

With the episode being titled “Pied Piper,” did you catch the references to rats dribbled into the episode? First, you had Ria accuse Eli of leaving like “rat’s from a sinking ship” and later Agent Reynolds opened a crate he heard noises in to find it full of rats.  I am not sure if these delicate and subtle additions were intentional, but I would really like to think so. 

What did you think of the episode? Did you think Lightman had made a mistake? Do you think Eli should stay or go?

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Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (12 Votes)

Jim G. is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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E, Sadly I never watched The Shield while it was on, so I was not aware how much of the cast was in this episode. I think you are right that it added to the episode now that I am aware. I have now added it to my Netflix list and will be playing catchup. Keith, Great observations, I will be keeping and eye on Eli even more now to see if there is a larger pattern at work.


From what I've seen online (conclusions drawn especially from Glee and Grey's Anatomy), the writers/producers of TV shows seem to be aware of what the fans think of characters and plotlines -- assumedly through surveys companies, letters, and any fan sites that are followed/surveyed. That said, I've thought Eli was scum since his particular brand of I'm-superior-to-everyone-else ethics had him betray the company he worked for and personally (in my estimation) him and only him steal all the money from the people who lost it to the rich-guy-ponzi-schemer he wanted the satisfaction of seeing in jail (by, for anyone unfamiliar with that episode, ignoring the deal Gillian negotiated to, by burying the rich criminal's daughter's involvement, get a lot of the money back by Eli going to the Feds behind her back). And what about the time, because he hates rich people so much he can't think straight, he fulfilled the letter of their contract rather than the spirit for the joy of his laughing at a millionaire, when he joyfully told the rich guy that the poor girl did know who he was when they met ... rather than also told him how honest was her love for him. That is, maybe I'm not alone in disliking him and he is going to be phased out ... or maybe he's just the in-house example of how the science can be abused by a scumbag sociopath.


Great episode. But did anyone else ubderstand why this episode was so good? A cast of characters that have had history together... Almost a full Shield cast get together. Excellent show

Lie to Me Season 2 Episode 19 Quotes

Agent Reynolds: Frankly you are beginning to sound a little insane.
Lightman: Really?
Reynolds: Really.
Lightman: I was hoping you would say that.

Eli: Does Lightman seem weird to you?
Tia: He's rude, impatient, distant, seems pretty normal to me.