Season 1 Episode 2

Uncertainty Principle

Aired Friday 10:00 PM Jan 28, 2005 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (11)

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out of 10
287 votes
  • This is definitely one, if not the best episode ever. It really shows the premise of the show.

    This episode really shows how the relationship of the brothers is structured, and how truly unstable Charlie is after the death of his mother. Charlie accurately predicts the location of the next target in the string of a bank robberies by two men named the Charm School boys. Once the FBI confronts these men, a deadly shoot out ensues, leaving Don injured with a shot in the arm, and Charlie thinking that his brother is statistically dead. This is one of my favorite episodes because it shows how close the brothers are really, and how much family means to every member of the Eppes family, and how Charlie is particularly affected by attacks when they hit close to home.
  • good episode

    Charlie helps Don find the probable next bank that robbers will hit. However, when the robbers come, a shootout occurs and an officer is killed. Charlie is devastated and retreats to his world of math. It's interesting to learn how Charlie copes with death and things out of his control - he just does math and ignores everything else. However, Charlie was able to snap out of it and help Don catch the bad guys. Overall, the story in this episode was just ok, but the character development was great. We're learning more and more about the two brothers and their past.
  • Really awesome episode!

    This episode was only the second one, but it was a great, great way to get the season rolling. I love the difference between the brothers: one being a kick-ass FBI agent, and the other being a genius frady-cat. Still, Charlie is my favourite character. So this episode really delved into omre of how Charlie really is: Nervous for his brother, whom he doesn't really have a good relationship with, and nervous about the violent world. It's so interesting to see the dynamic between the family members. I really don't have the words to bescribe this episode beacuse I literally think this is one of my all time favourites. It's brialliantly writtena and exsecuted!
  • My favorit3 3pisod3.

    This was most d3finat3ly my favorit3 3pisod3. It was don3 diff3r3ntly th3n any oth3r 3pisod3. I lov3d how so much stuff about th3ir past was r3v3al3d. And wh3n Charli3 was talking to Alan his voic3 got all sq3aky and it was just a r3ally aw3som3 sc3n3. I lik3d th3 part wh3n Don got mad at Charli3 wh3n th3y w3r3 out by th3 Koi pond and Don grabb3d Charli3's shirt. I also lik3d th3 3nding sc3n3, it was quit3 amusing. I lik3d th3 us3 of H3is3nburg's unc3rtainty principl3 it was a th3ory I actually und3rstood p3rf3ctly. This is th3 b3st 3pisod3 to dat3.
  • Review

    This episode was much different from the first, with Charlie having all ready providing the help to the FBI. His mathmatics were correct, yet something went wrong that not even math could predict. I didnt much like Charlies seemingly mental breakdown during the episode and I think had he just stayed out of contact for a few days that would have been better. Every episodes going to make him have some sort of a roadbump, so having him go mental after one little bump in the road was a little much for me. I thought the episode was good though, a lot better then the pilot episode. I still want to learn more about the characters backgrounds though
  • Charlie feels great about helping his brother with the latest FBI case, which only causes a greater reaction when the confrontation he had predicted as simple goes bad. Charlie retreats and refuses to help Don any farther, but Don knows he needs the help.

    If this had not been the first episode I'd seen, I doubt I would've made a point to watch the show every Friday night. Not only is it one of the more action-driven episodes, but the tension between the brothers and the internal subplots are better than any other episode so far.

    Compared to other episodes, "Uncertainty Principle" took characterization to a whole new level. Few shows get the audience this involved with the characters by the second episode. All of the sudden you realize what make the Epps brothers not only in history, but in heart. They have immense differences, yet even in the midst of an incredible conflict, they need each other's help. The episode takes you to the heart of family, risk, selflessness along with an action driven, suspenseful plot. That's a difficult balance to achieve in one storyline.

    Also, as far as other shows go, there is an aspect portrayed in this episode that's hard to find in other crime dramas; this episode focuses on the true goal of FBI work as protecting the innocent public. Many shows never look past catching the bad guy as the goal. I enjoyed this new aspect (which comes mostly from Charlie) as a part of the whole first season of Numb3rs.
  • Charlie Epps use his mathematical-genius to accurately predict where a band of bank robbers will strike next. However, when FBI agent Don Epps and his team confront them, a shoot-out occurs leaving four people, including an FBI agent, dead.

    This episode is a strong addition to a great pilot episode. We learn more about the main characters and their interactions and family dynamics. Charlie Epps withdraws to garage when he learns four people are dead during a bank robbery turned shoot-out. The incident reminds him of his mother's death. Math can predict the probability of an outcome, however human behavior is sometimes unpredictable. It reminds him how little control he has over his life. Math cannot bring his mother back.

    I was moved by Charlie’s response to outside stress. To withdraw to P-versus-NP problem was an appropriate reaction for his character’s personality. Escaping to try to solve an open theoretical problem is his defense mechanism. Fascinating television!

  • Late to get hooked but glad I'm here.

    I became a fan in the second season but after hearing so much about the first season I knew I had to see what I was missing. I had to wait a while but they finally put the first season on DVD and I could not wait to own it and now I do. I must agree with everyone else this is the episode that would have hooked me in the first season. I watch this episode over and over again and loving it more and more every time. It introduced the more human side of Don and how secluded Charlie was from the real world. I hope to see more of this in the seasons to come and I hope that there will be a lot of them.
  • Again another great show

    Don & Charlie's mother dies of cancer and that she
    Still has them thinking about her nonetheless as Charlie predicts a shoot-out with bank robbers at a bankd
    Four people wind up dead, including a police officer while Charlie is scared and no wonder he doesn't want to wear the badge and gun in the family like Don does.
    But real law enforcement faces this each and everyday
    To protect us from all kinds of evil!
  • Can you say "quintessential TV viewing"?

    If the first show left me unsure at all of the show's integrity, this second episode eradicated any doubt. The "Uncertainty Principle" is the episode that really convinced me that Numb3rs is worth watching, and makes for some seriously good television. I have to say, from my point of view, neither CSI nor any of its spin-offs can compare to what Numb3rs brings to the table. I loved the deeper meaning behind the bank robberies and how Charlie used his deductive logic to calculate precisely when and where the robbers would strike next. They managed to fit a lot of history into this episode as well as discuss Charlie's vulnerability to the cases he wil be handling. This was definitely an audience pleasing episode, and I would recommend newcomers to reserve all judgement on the show for the second episode.
  • This episode is why I love this show. The balance between the character development and the action is what makes this series successful

    When I watched the Pilot for this series I was impressed, but it was watching this episode that I grew a deep respect for the series overall.

    The writing was at its best revealing more insight into Charlie's development. How he handles grief, and pressure. David Krumholtz does his best performance to date.

    This show, although proclaiming the significance of numerical values in fighting crime, does not ignore the most important value: the subtext of Charlie's relationship with his family.

    This is definitely the standout episode, imo. And the perfect introduction for those who are not familiar with the series.