1. What is the Quantum Leap Nitpickers Group?
The group consists of fans of Quantum Leap, who, through the Quantum Leap newsgroup, rec.arts.sf.tv.quantum-leap, post comments about a different episode of the show each week. These comments usually take the form of nits - we look for inconsistencies, ironies, and interesting details in each episode. Often one comment starts a lively and fun discussion that continues for weeks.
2. Do you have serious discussions
about the show as well?
Yes, comments often start discussions on the philosophical or ethical considerations in an episode. Anything that seems interesting or unusual is open for discussion. We welcome all types of comments, from the seemingly frivolous to the serious.
3. What are some examples of the types of nits?
For example, since holograms aren't supposed to reflect, we shouldn't be able to see Al's reflection in a shiny surface, which we do in "Genesis." Since he's in the Imaging Chamber, he shouldn't cast a shadow when he's with Sam (also "Genesis"), or make contact with Sam or Sam's clothing ("Freedom").
Sometimes two different dates are given for the same event, such as Sam's age when he entered college. Some episodes contain a leap date that, in context, should have been a weekday, but according to the calendar was Sunday ("Pool Hall Blues"). In this section, we also catch anachronisms that creep into an episode now and then. Did that song really come out in 1963? Did they have panty hose back then?]
These occur when Sam sees the leapee's reflection and his or her movements don't line up with Sam's.
Sometimes Sam or Al reveal details about themselves that are inconsistent with what we have learned, or will learn, about their personalities. For instance, it's hard to believe that Sam streaked in college as he claims ("Genesis"). Also, for someone who claims that English Literature is a cliche ("Star-Crossed") Sam seems to know a lot about it, and is sometimes influenced by specific poems ("Peoria").
This includes nits dealing with special effects, props, and commentary related to Al's world back at Project Quantum Leap. Under this category, we also track the changes we see in POL as the series progresses.
This section includes all the nits that don't fit into any other category.
Mind over matter
In this section, we explore what light a particular episode casts on the ever-popular mind-leaping versus body-leaping debate.
4. What kind of details do you look for?
We identify the songs and artists in each episode, attempt to keep track
of Al's women, choose our favorite quotes, and look for influences in films
and novels. For example, "Play it Again Seymour" draws a lot on Casablanca.
We also look for Sam's "Oh, Boys," trivia about actors and settings, and the many details that do work. Some of us have the episodes as they originally aired, and we note the sections that have been syndicut.
5. How can I add my nits?
Go to the QL Newsgroup, and look for the name of an episode as the header, posted by Lwaxanna (firstname.lastname@example.org), and post your comments at that header. We appreciate it if you keep the same thread title so that the editors will not miss any of your nits. We're eager for all QL watchers to add their voices.
6. What if I haven't seen all of the episodes?
That's OK. You can get in on the discussions for those you have seen or add your nits to previously discussed episodes (see below).
7. How often is an episode posted for discussion?
Lwaxanna posts an episode heading each Saturday. She posts them in the same order in which they were originally shown on NBC.
8. How far are you in the sequence?
The episode for the week of June 21, 1997 was "Maybe Baby." Check the Newsgroup for an up to date pointer.
9. What do all these abbreviations mean, anyway?
stands for Post Creative Rationalization, and it's the term used to explain
an otherwise unexplainable error or inconsistency.
GTFW stands for God, Time, Fate, or Whatever, and it's the force that Sam and Al refer to that's leaping Sam around.
PQL is Project Quantum Leap
DPB is Donald P. Bellisario
TPTB is The Powers That Be
Some episodes you may see frequently referred to are MIA, MI (Mirror Image, and LHO (Lee Harvey Oswald).
10. What happens to the comments after they're posted?
Lwaxanna downloads all the comments from Dejanews and transcribes them in order by topic. She forwards the transcripts to Michele, who edits and paraphrases them into summary form and combines than with Marta’s details reports. Michele then e-mails a first draft of each summary to a mailing list of all contributors who have expressed an interest in receiving them. If you wish to be added to Michele’s mailing list, contact her at email@example.com. Michele allows mailing list members a couple of weeks to send comments, additions and corrections, so that she can prepare a final draft of the summaries, final drafts are then forwarded to Lwaxanna to be posted on this website.
11. How can I access a previous episode's posting?
You can find them at Deja News at http://www.dejanews.com/home_sf.shtml
For "group" enter rec.arts.sf.tv.quantum-leap and in "subject" enter the episode title. Leave all other boxes empty.
12. Can I pick a nit in
a previous episode after a new episode has been posted?
Yes, if the episode header isn't in your current header list, post a new header with "Nitpick Re: [Episode Name]", and Lwaxanna or Michele will add it to the list. If the episode is in your current header list, post your comment to that header.
If the summary for the episode has already been prepared do not let this deter you. Any additional nits or comments on the summaries posted to the group will still be saved to the transcripts maintained by Lwaxanna. These items will then be available for inclusion in any printed version of the guide and in any amendments to the summaries.
However it should be noted that because of the ongoing production of the summaries unless there is a glaring error that we have missed we will not have time to amend the finalised summaries until after all the episodes have been reviewed.
13. Can I post a nit for an episode that hasn't been discussed yet?
Yes, identify it in your header as "Early Nit (Episode Name)].
14. Who are the editors?
The current editors are Lwaxanna, Michele, and Marta. Bryce Kajula was
an editor for the first season and set up the original website for displaying
the summaries. Real life commitments have meant that Bryce could not continue
to actively contribute to the nitpicking.The editors would like to thank
him for all his hard work on behalf of the group.
15. What's the purpose of this Nitpicking group?
It's fun, and the discussions really give us a lot to think about; since
we are watching the episodes with a different eye, we notice things we
might not have seen before, and we find a lot of good QL related subjects
to discuss. Of course, we love the opportunity to watch and re-watch
the show. The discussions we have emphatically show how rich and beautifully
acted QL is, and how it works its magic on many different levels.
We are also hoping to have the Quantum Leap Nit-pickers Guide published in print hopefully as a book but if not in Fanfic format. The rastql editors of this guide have agreed to contribute any money to which they would be entitled by the commercial sale of a published book to the favorite charities of Scott and Dean. If the guide is released in
Fanfic format a percentage of the cover price will be similarly contributed, the rest of the price covering postage and printing and nothing more.