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Nowhere Man

Season 1 Episode 7

A Rough Whimper Of Insanity

Aired Monday 9:00 PM Oct 23, 1995 on UPN
out of 10
User Rating
25 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

A Rough Whimper Of Insanity
Unsure if he's running towards something or away from it, an exhausted Veil happens upon a disabled, reclusive computer genius, Scott Hansen. The young "hacker" is able to access Veil's deleted files—the only trace of his existence—and through an intricate virtual reality session, takes Veil back to his wife Alyson and also helps him get information about his pursuers.moreless

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  • Arguably the weakest episode of the series, but ultimately worth watching.

    A Rough Whimper of Insanity is a remarkably mixed episode. The acting is quite good, the characterization is mostly solid and the basic concept is initially interesting, but not long after the promising beginning do the flaws become apparent.

    Anyone who has used a PC for more than 15 minutes will grimace at the quaint 1995 depiction of the internet. Most television shows commit the same bizarre errors when dealing with computers: characters never use a mouse, "hacking" apparently takes seconds and requires the user mash randomly on the keyboard, and of course all PCs make bleeps and bloops as they work. Given the year this was made it's forgivable to some degree, but it all feels rushed and not up to the high quality of the rest of the series.

    Then come the "virtual reality" sequences.

    In the episode's defense, the first sequence has a very appealing dream-like look and feel, but virtual reality it isn't. The second sequence is not so lucky and comes off as terribly cheesy. The modest special effects don't help. (Why does the teacher have virtual reality goggles in her house, and why aren't they plugged into anything?) It's bad enough that seeing this one episode alone could turn someone off to the series.

    But if you're capable of looking past the overambitious nature of the script, the criminal misuse of computer jargon and the somewhat contrived ending, A Rough Whimper of Insanity is worth sitting through. There are a few very important moments for Tom and the audience, and the players (especially Greenwood) sell it with believeable acting despite the sometimes absurd material.moreless

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