<-- Previous EpisodeNext Episode -->

FlashForward: 137 Sekunden

When an elderly Nazi prisoner claims he can explain why the blackout lasted 137 seconds, Mark and Janis travel to Germany to see him and discover they have to pardon him in return for his information. Meanwhile, Demetri learns when and how he will die from a anonymous caller, and Aaron tries to learn the truth about his daughter's death by requesting an exhumation of the body.

Episode Info  

Episode number: 1x3
Airdate: Thursday October 08th, 2009

Alternate Airdates:

UK (Channel 5) Oct 12, 2009
NL (Veronica) Jul 08, 2010

Guest Stars
Shohreh AghdashlooShohreh Aghdashloo
As Nhadra Udaya
Lee Thompson YoungLee Thompson Young
As Agent Gough
Barry Shabaka HenleyBarry Shabaka Henley
As Agent Vreede
Gina TorresGina Torres
As Felicia Wedeck
Gabrielle UnionGabrielle Union
As Zoey Andata
Kim DickensKim Dickens
As Katie
Thomas KretschmannThomas Kretschmann
As Stefan Krieger
Curt LowensCurt Lowens
As Rudolf Geyer
Jeff Richards (1)Jeff Richards (1)
As Jerome Murphy

Co-Guest Stars
Robert Lonzo ThompsonRobert Lonzo Thompson
As Abdi
Lennon WynnLennon Wynn
As Charlie Benford
Amy RosoffAmy Rosoff
As Marcie Turoff
Ray ProsciaRay Proscia
As Helmut Baecker
Joe RoseJoe Rose
As Bartender
Guido FöhrweißerGuido Föhrweißer
As Schultz (as Guido Foehrweisser)
Michael MertonMichael Merton
As John Spears
Cade OlivasCade Olivas
As Attaf
Anna KhajaAnna Khaja
As Older Woman
Main Cast
Joseph FiennesJoseph Fiennes
As Mark Benford
John ChoJohn Cho
As Demetri Noh
Brian F. OBrian F. O'Byrne
As Aaron Stark
Courtney B. VanceCourtney B. Vance
As Stan Wedeck
Sonya WalgerSonya Walger
As Olivia Benford
Christine WoodsChristine Woods
As Janis Hawk


Demetri gets a call from the intelligence agent, who tells him she saw a report where he is shot on March 15. The briefing only reveals that he was shot three times in the chest. The woman hangs up before Demetri can learn more from her...

Read the full recap
Episode Notes
Title: 137 Sekunden

Sekunden is German for "seconds", and 137 seconds is how long everyone blacked out for.

Tracy Stark, Aaron's daughter, was born on December 22, 1984, and was reported to have died on October 16, 2007.

ArtistSong TitlePlayed When
Jeff BuckleyLover, You Should've Come Over 
KC & the Sunshine BandBoogie Shoes 
Smashing PumpkinsTo SheilaPlayed when Mark returns home from Germany (32:43)

Episode Quotes
Demetri: (answering cell phone) This is Demetri.
Caller: I'm sorry to disturb you, but I'm calling in response to your Mosaic board posting.
Demetri: Who is this? How did you get this number?
Caller: I can't divulge that, but I can tell you that my vision involved you.
Demetri: Go on...
Caller: In my flash forward, I was reading an intelligence briefing, and... I am sorry, there is no delicate way to say this, but... on March 15th, 2010, you are going to be murdered.
Demetri: What? What the hell are you talking about?
Caller: I understand why you are upset, but, my hope is that, by telling you what I know, you will be able to prevent your murder from happening.
Demetri: Your briefing, did it say who killed me?
Caller: I'm afraid not.
Demetri: What did it say, then?
Caller: That you were an agent from the American FBI and that you were shot three times in the chest.

Janis Hawk: There are a lot of ghosts, here. Isn't this where Sophie Scholl and the rest of the White Rose Nazi Resistance group were executed?
Stefan Krieger: For what mistake did your country eradicate its indigenous population, and practice institutionalized slavery for, ohh... 250 years?
Mark: We also gave the world Britney Spears...

Aaron: (to Mark) If you want to prevent the future and save your marriage, first step isn't keeping secrets from your wife. Take that from a guy who's already been divorced, right?

Mark: Janis, we've been so worried the blackout might happen again, we haven't stopped to ask ourselves what if it happened before.

Episode Goofs
When Noh picks up his fiance from the airport, she is shown pulling a carry on bag and carrying a purse in her other hand. After they kiss the shot pulls back to show her purse on the floor and the carry on bag is not seen. The shot zooms in and when it pulls out again her purse is seen on top of the carry on bag, even though no one has bent over to pick it up.

Cultural References
Janis Hawk: Isn't this where Sophie Scholl and the rest of the White Rose Nazi Resistance group were executed?

Sophie Scholl was a member of the White Rose resistance group in Nazi Germany. They were a non-violent protest organization, active in Nazi Germany in 1942. In early 1943, Sophie and her brother, Hans, were convicted of treason and executed by guillotine in Stadelheim Prison, Munich, Germany for distributing leaflets. While the direct value of their actions was small, she is now considered a significant hero in Germany for being one of the few who openly spoke out against what the Nazis were doing. Prison officials emphasized the courage displayed as she went to her execution. Her final words were "How can we expect righteousness to prevail when there is hardly anyone willing to give himself up individually to a righteous cause. Such a fine, sunny day, and I have to go, but what does my death matter, if through us thousands of people are awakened and stirred to action?"

Mark: I have to ask myself if the ends don't justify the means, here.
Janis: They never do, Mark

This is a common, hoary old rational fallacy that people rarely challenge. In truth, the ends DO justify the means. ALWAYS. The tricky part is, you don't get to "select" which ends are used to justify the means while ignoring the rest of the ends which might detract from that justification. You must consider ALL the ends, not just the ones you're interested in using to fortify your justification. If an action (or inaction) kills one person but saves 10,000, both are relevant ends. You cannot reject it by paying only attention to the one death, nor can you support it only by noting the 10,000 saved. If the action also threatens the well being or quality of life for 100,000 others, that, too, is a relevant end.

In this specific case, the available data on the ends: a mass murderer may go free, but it's not likely that he'll kill again, nor is it likely to be a long life, given that he is 86 years old. Counterbalancing that is potentially important information leading to the peace of mind for literally billions of people. One presumes that it may Geyer probably has important information or he would not have been up on Benford's tackboard in his flashforward. How you weight those two ends is the key decision.

Another speculation, with spoiler potential:

There's really no reason to presume that the "front" interpretation one places on some events is the correct one. There are often variant interpretations possible for many of the flashforwards. Geyer's, for example, could be a reneg on the part of the Germans and the Americans -- let him think/believe he's going to get released, then toss him right back in prison after the fact for some reason (or none) AFTER his vision has occurred exactly as he saw it. This context both meets the flashforward AND any moral objections one has against releasing a Nazi war criminal. OR you could release him, then let the Israelis kidnap him and bring him to trial in Israel (or just off him, for that matter). In short, the moral objections which Janice raises aren't even relevant -- the real question is, what other things can she/they do to produce a more satisfactory outcome within the bounds of the visions. They are under no obligation to make the visions come true as they see them to be -- the only thing that presumably must occur is that, at that specific moment, certain things appeared to be happening. All you know about Geyer's and Murphy's visions is that they sync with certain information you have. There's plenty of information NOT covered in those visions which you are open to supply and which can radically change the actuality of the scenario they've perceived.

This is actually reflected in Aaron's situation. It strongly appears as though his daughter was killed. Yet somehow, in fact, she is alive, or at least that is what appears to be the case in his flashforward. Either there has been a misinterpretation of the circumstances done earlier, or Aaron has made a misinterpretation of what he's seen in his flashforward (such as, perhaps, he met a physical double for his daughter at the moment of forwarding. Not saying that's the answer, just that that would still fit his flashforward and yet still involve her being dead).

Mark: (looking at the worldwide crow population graph) There. See that dip? The day of the blackout. Geyer said that crows died outside his cell but it wasn't just in Germany, it was all over the world, during the blackout.
Janis: (sighs) Mark... and I say this with love: Who gives a damn?

Janis demonstrates that Mark really, really needs a new assistant. As Lyndon B. Johnson would have put it, she's "too stupid to pour pi** out of a boot if the instructions were printed on the heel". One cannot yet guess what the connection is, but that is hardly an insignificant piece of data. ANY event which isn't a clear and direct consequence of the flashforwards (such as planes crashing) is potentially important. And something that significant, a global event involving a mass die-off, can hardly be unconnected. It may be causative, indicative, or otherwise relevant, but it will be somehow of importance to understanding what was done, or who did it, or how they did it.... She should not require Mark to urge her on, at that point -- that factoid is blatantly just as important as finding the video of the guy moving about in the baseball stadium.

Other Episode Crew

CreatorBrannon Braga  |  David S. Goyer
Executive ProducerVince Gerardis  |  Ralph M. Vicinanza  |  Jessika Borsiczsky  |  David S. Goyer  |  Brannon Braga
ProducerMark Ovitz
Co-ProducerCathy M. Frank  |  Seth Hoffman  |  Jeff Betancourt  |  Cleve Landsberg  |  Samantha Thomas
Production DesignerStephen Storer
EditorAvi Youabian  |  Etienne Des Lauriers
CastingWendy O'Brien
Unit Production ManagerCleve Landsberg
First Assistant DirectorMichael Zimbrich
Second Assistant DirectorAnthony J. Nahar
MusicRamin Djawadi
Music EditorDavid Klotz
Music SupervisorAlexandra Patsavas
Costume DesignerMari-an Ceo
Camera OperatorBob Gorelick  |  Randy Nolen
Set DecoratorJennifer M. Gentile
Location ManagerMichelle Latham
Transportation CoordinatorJ. Smith
Property MasterChristopher Amy
Construction CoordinatorJeff Goyer
Production Sound MixerGeoffrey Patterson (2)
Script SupervisorRebecca Poulos
Production CoordinatorJamie Stern
Assistant EditorJacqueline Bisbano
Post Production SupervisorSandra Nebel
Supervising Sound EditorThomas A. Harris
Re-Recording MixerTom Dahl  |  Mark D. Fleming
Director of PhotographyJeff Jur
Stunt CoordinatorDanny Weselis
Art DirectorRon Yates
Based On The Works OfRobert J. Sawyer
Executive Story EditorBarbara Nance  |  Scott M. Gimple  |  Quinton Peeples
ConsultantRobert J. Sawyer
Costume SupervisorRobyn Williams
Visual Effects SupervisorKevin Blank
Production AccountantJanet Latham
Chief Lighting TechnicianBrett Laumann
Department Head HairDennis Parker (2)
Special Effects SupervisorParry Willard
Department Head Make-upAngela Nogaro
Production AssociateIsabella Hyams
Production StaffLindsey Allen  |  Zuzanna Cernik  |  Katie Greisiger  |  Jacob Cooney
Missing Information
Click here to add Episode References