Episode: Leverage 3.08 – “The Boost Job”
Original Air Date: August 1, 2010
Paul Manlow, a school teacher, gets pulled over by the cops for stealing a truck, which he didn’t do. The truck was, however, stolen, then resold in another state. Duke Penzer (played by Bill “Here’s your sign” Engvall), the owner of a car dealership, cloned the truck, using a fake VIN from another state since the VINs are kept state by state.
Nate and Sophie “steal” a competing car dealership in order to trap Penzer. To get Penzer’s attention, Nate beats him in a car race (Penzer used to be a racer) then auctions off his winnings, Penzer’s car. Once Penzer is on the hook, Sophie will infiltrate his dealership while Parker and Hardison get involved with Lefty, the local head of a gang of car thieves. Parker used to be a car thief, and using Hardison’s hacking skills she manages to steal an unstealable car.
Things are going well until Parker decides to warn a young girl, Shorty, working with the car thieves. Shorty reminds Parker of herself as a girl so she’s trying to help her out. Unfortunately, she blows their cover to Lefty. Knowing they’re being set up, Penzer and Lefty arrive early to steal a shipment of stolen vehicles they think is going to Nate. It looks like they’re going to kill Nate and Sophie, but suddenly the police show up, and they know the cars are stolen (because they are the cops’ personal cars). Penzer tries to convince them that it wasn’t him, but Nate and Sophie have escaped with Eliot’s help. The police arrest Penzer, and Paul Manlow gets his own charges dropped as well as Penzer’s car which Nate suggests he sell in order to open up a landscaping business (if Manlow mentioned a landscaping business earlier in the episode, I missed it). And Nate recommends Josie (Shorty’s real name) as his first employee.
This was a really interesting episode, but it will be a relatively short review. Most of the time I enjoy Leverage because of the humor in the episode. It’s one of the aspects that drew me in to the show. This episode didn’t have as much as a typical episode, yet I enjoyed it quite a bit. And really there’s not a lot to comment on in the episode; in fact I think my notes for this episode are the shortest I’ve ever taken. I was, however, particularly surprised at Bill Engvall’s performance. I totally believed him as the jerk car dealer and didn’t once think he might break out the “Here’s your sign” line. Who knew he could do a serious role?
I always enjoy getting back story on characters, and this one had some more information about Parker. I mentioned that she was a car thief starting when she was only twelve (not really a surprise, actually), but apparently she was a getaway driver before that. No wonder she’s a crazy driver (as revealed in last week’s episode)! The reason she stopped stealing cars was because she got left behind to take the rap by someone she thought was her friend. When she interacts with Shorty in this episode, it’s clear she’s trying to help her avoid the kind of life Parker has led. I like it when the writers give us insight like this that also helps us better understand the characters as they are now.
Rating: 4 / 5 Stars