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Old 09-15-2013, 12:09 AM   #21
Lightning McQueenie
Junior Leaper
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,042

I love how much discussion this thread is having

To get back to what I had originally brought up about the language the leapee speaks and whether Sam speaking English would be understood, we have to remember that with Sam being the first known time-traveller in the world and the longest-serving, there is no way to tell what could happen to the mental state of a leaper as time goes on. What SBF wrote about "Double Identity" where Sam needed Al to translate Italian for him is completely valid, but we have to remember that that was one of his first few leaps, when Sam (apart from his Swiss-cheesed memory, which I argue is his own doing anyway) had complete control over his own brain. As time went on, not so much.

We have to remember that Sam's brain was fried in Shock Theatre, and even though they were able to reverse its effects enough so that he regained his identity and was able to leap, there is bound to be some lasting side-effects. Then in the very next leap, he simo-leapt with Al, absorbing part of his brain. We don't have any evidence to suggest that this changed even after Sam started leaping again. I haven't seen "Dreams" in a while, but I recall him having memories of the leapee.

But I think the most important example is "Lee Harvey Oswald", where Sam, not knowing any Russian beforehand, absorbed enough of Oswald's mind to speak in Russian (and to dismantle a rifle, and other things...). In future leaps Sam continued to merge minds with the leapee (even to one point taking on the leapee's persona, accent and all - "Dr Ruth"). So I believe that if Sam ever was to leap into a situation where nobody knew any English and would not understand him, Sam would be able to tap into the leapee's mind (either consciously or sub-consciously) and speak fluently in the required language.

This brings up another interesting question - do you think Sam could gain the ability to tap into the leapee's mind at will? We know from "Revenge of the Evil Leaper" that it's possible through hypnosis, but do you think Sam would be able to do it at will?
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