The Pretender

Season 2 Episode 7

Collateral Damage

Aired Saturday 9:00 PM Jan 03, 1998 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
54 votes

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Episode Summary

LOST HILLS, VIRGINIA - Jarod becomes a Special Forces soldier to help the daughter of a Vietnam veteran get her father's name added to the War Memorial. Back at The Centre, Miss Parker reluctantly babysits Debbie while Broots is in Florida on an assignment.

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  • This is exactly why I love The Pretender. Not Jarod's adventures in helping other people, not the chasing (even though this is fun), but this. Miss Parker, open and exposed.

    This is exactly why I love The Pretender. Not Jarod's adventures in helping other people, not the chasing (even though this is fun), but this. Miss Parker, open and exposed.

    This was a wonderful episode, my favorite up to date and most definitely in my top 5 of all time favorites, of all the shows I've ever watched, and that's a lot.

    What we get to see in this episode is something we really don't see often. We all knew deep down inside Miss Parker had feelings, but the way she gets we Debbie once she let her in her shell, that's very rare. We get to see a side of her that we never saw. And what happened between those two was something very powerful. They were connected by a pain the both shared, mother abandon, even if for Miss Parker it was because of her death.

    The scene where Miss Parker collapse in the Centre and Debbie comes and hold her hand was worth watching the episode all on its own. And of course including the flashbacks of her mother death, that were very painfull to watch.

    The scene where she's brushing Debbie's hair and telling her her story might seem out of character, but to me it's not. She connects to the little girl in a way she never did with anyone. And lets be honest, I get the feeling that she felt a little bit maternal there too. Like I said, Miss Parker hides her feelings but it doesn't stop her from having them. She's spending a lot of time and energy preserving her image, but that's not what she truly is, well not completely anyway. And we get to see that in that episode.

    And of course at the end when she transforms Debbie in a little Miss Parker, the expression on Broots face, that was priceless. That proves she really did adopted that child!moreless
Daniel Von Bargen

Daniel Von Bargen

Prentiss McLaren

Guest Star

Daniel Dae Kim

Daniel Dae Kim

Le Xuan Duc (Lenny Duke)

Guest Star

Steven Anderson

Steven Anderson

Barney Stanfield

Guest Star

Kelsey Mulrooney

Kelsey Mulrooney

Debbie Broots

Recurring Role

Ryan Merriman

Ryan Merriman

Young Jarod

Recurring Role

Alex Wexo

Alex Wexo

Young Sydney

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (8)

    • At one point Jarod's rank is a 2nd Lieutenant, then it changes to 1st Lieutenant.

    • Jarod's Pretend: Special Forces soldier

    • Jarod's Discoveries: Jell-O

    • There has never been a female in the Ranger regiment, and never has one completed the Ranger Training Course (the ranger tab above the shoulder patch is awarded to those that complete the program).

    • While Jarod has a combat patch of the 25th Infantry Division on his right shoulder, the only confict he would have served in to receive it, and the Combat Infantry Badge (the rifle on his chest), would have been the Gulf War. Members of the 25th did serve there, but Jarod has none of the campaign medals on his chest.

    • Captain McLaren would have either been a full Colonel or at least a general by the time frame. He would not have been a captain for so many years after vietnam, and a captain would never have the position of responsibility that McLaren had.

    • The beret flash (where the rank goes) on all the soldiers is upside down.

    • There's a bit of confusion on how to spell 'McClaren's' last name. During the episode, when Jarod is looking at McClaren's bank account, it's spelled McLaren. But during the credits, it has it spelled McClaren. I'm putting down the official spelling as McLaren, as it's the name that is featured in the episode.

      Re the confusion: I would suggest the spelling McClaren holds more merit because it appears both in the end credits and is printed on the war footage shown near the beginning.

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Young Jarod: I missed it.
      Young Sydney: Most people would, Jarod. Their eyes can only perceive the obvious. But to maximize your gift, your eyes must perceive everything.

    • Congressman Beckwith: You a registered voter, son?
      Jarod: No, sir, but I did help manipulate the Nixon landslide in 1972.

    • Debbie: How did you get to be so mean?
      Miss Parker: I was born that way.
      Debbie: No you weren't.
      (places a picture of Miss Parker and her mother in front of her)

    • Jarod: (to McLaren) Don't wet your pants, sir, it's only Jell-o. It's a dessert. Yummy.

  • NOTES (1)

    • The section of the Vietnam War Memorial wall on which Mark Stevens' name is finally written upon is actually filled with the names of people related to The Pretender universe, among others: Ray Bunch (music compositor), Craig Van Sickle and Steven Mitchell (creators).


    • Jarod's surname: Patton (referencing General George Patton)

    • Miss Parker: And what am I so angry about, Dr. Spock?
      This is a reference to the well-known psychatrist, Dr. Benjamin Spock, who wrote books on child-rearing. Miss Parker and Sydney were talking about her relationship with her mother and her new relationship with Debbie (Broots' daughter).