Numb3rs

Season 1 Episode 3

Vector

11
Aired Friday 10:00 PM Feb 04, 2005 on CBS
8.8
out of 10
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253 votes

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Episode Summary

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Various people in the Los Angeles area with seemingly nothing in common become extremely sick and die on the same day, and Don fears bioterrorists may have released a deadly virus into the environment. While he tries to discover whether anyone is behind the outbreak, Charlie tries to locate the point of origin.

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Elizabeth Connors

Elizabeth Connors

Claudia Kramer

Guest Star

CCH Pounder

CCH Pounder

Lt. Lee Havercamp

Guest Star

Anjul Nigam

Anjul Nigam

Dr. Renfro

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (12)

    • Opening Numb3rs:
      4 COUNTIES
      30 CASES
      6 DEATHS
      1 UNKNOWN PATHOGEN

    • The Math:
      Viral Vector
      Vector
      SIR Model
      Patient Zero –  A term used to describe the first known carrier of a disease. The term was first used during the smallpox epidemic.

    • Charlie has had top level clearance in National Security for almost five years. He'd earned the position after doing work for NSA years ago and had kept it a secret from Don the entire time.

    • Jessica Avery is sometimes referred to as Janice Avery.

    • Charlie and Lt. Lee Havercamp are reviewing the structural identities of the two viral strains, by superimposing them over each other, claiming that it will take months to find the difference between the two strains.

      However, the two structures shown are DNA helixes, and they are based on the DNA sequence. So the whole thing is meaningless, they wold not have access to those structures without knowing the DNA sequence, and thereby the differences.

      And Lt. Lee Havercamp starting to talk about recognizing protein patterns from a nucleotide structure is rather meaningless, unless she is able to translate the DNA sequences in the structures to a protein sequence on the fly, which is more than unlikely.

    • Why doesn't the team question Dr. Weaver when they question Grolsch and the female researcher? Wouldn't the FBI consider everyone with access to the virus a suspect until they've proven otherwise?

    • How did Weaver manage to spread the virus using an aerosol can without getting himself infected? He didn't appear to be wearing a face mask or anything to protect himself. Are we really to believe he would put himself at risk?

    • When Don first talks to Grolsch, the dialog suggests that he said the virus was out. But a few moments later, they act surprised he knows. What brought up the Spanish Flu in the first place then?

    • Havercamp tells Eppes and Lake that Joshua (the kid in the van) got ill on Saturday. If it was a Saturday, then why was the mom taking all the kids to school and Josh trying to finish his homework?

    • The two kids (David and Ryan in the credits) get out of the minivan to go to class. But when they head out, they don't shut the door. Few shots later, mom is racing to the hospital. Who shut the door?

    • Once the bus station has been identified as a possible point of origin for the virus, the Hazmet team go in clad in special suits and breathing equipment. Yet just a couple of feet away are many of the cast team, with no preventative measures. Spanish flu is an airborne virus and could easily have infected those very close.

    • When Gerald is talking to Linda in the bathroom, the audio to Gerald's mouth doesn't match his face. He isn't talking, the audio is dubbed in.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Don: (about the Spanish flu) What did they do in 1918? How did they stop it?
      Terry: Nothing. There is no cure.

    • Terry: (to Don about Charlie) You were speaking terrorism, he was speaking math.

    • Larry: When we met just now, was I going out or coming into the library?
      Charlie: You were coming out.
      Larry: My memory needs a memory. All right.
      (He turns to go back into the library.)
      Charlie: Larry, you were coming out!

    • Larry: Charlie, you're making the assumption that these people know their field as well as you know math, and that's an assumption I find tremendously problematic.

    • Charlie: How do you forgive yourself if you're wrong?
      Don: You don't. We can't be wrong.

    • Charlie: I wish we could make Dad just stay in the house for a couple of weeks.
      Don: Yeah, well, good luck with that.
      Charlie: What? I've gone months without leaving the house.

    • Charlie: Larry, do you have a minute?
      Larry: Yes, because we all have the same number of minutes at all times, do we not?

  • NOTES (6)

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

    • The Spanish Flu:
      There is much discussion of the 1918 outbreak of this flu, and they say that 600,000 people were killed in the US, though the actual figure is usually presented as 675,000. It is interesting and horrifying, though, to note that in just 18 months, the virus killed anything from 50 million people to 100 million people, depending on which figures you take, and because it was a worldwide pandemic, right at the end of the war, it's probably impossible to estimate the exact number. It's also interesting to note that this flu killed more people in that time than those killed in World War I or those killed in the four years of the bubonic plague. The virus also targeted the young and healthy, whilst most flus go for the young, old or weak. And as a last note, during the 25 or so years that AIDS has been around, 25 million people have died. The same number died in just 25 weeks of the Spanish flu.

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