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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

at popapostle dot-com
Terminator: Strange Things Happen at the One Two Point "Strange Things Happen at the One Two Point"
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
TV episode
Written by Ashley Edward Miller & Zack Stentz
Directed by Scott Peters
Original air date: November 24, 2008


Sarah investigates a new company with a possible connection to the three dots and Skynet.


Read the story summary at the Terminator Wiki


Didja Know?


The title of this episode, "Strange Things Happen at the One Two Point", is a proverb of the Chinese board game of Go, as mentioned within the episode itself.


Characters appearing or mentioned in this episode


James Ellison

Cromartie (in dream only, deactivated)


Sarah Connor (also uses the alias Sarah Gale)

Derek Reese

John Connor

Andy Goode (mentioned only, deceased)

Barbara Chamberlain (mentioned only, deceased)

Jesse Flores

LAPD detective (unnamed)

Dr. Boyd Sherman (dies in this episode)

Catherine Weaver

Alex Akagi

Xander Akagi

Emma Akagi (mentioned only, deceased)

Aaron (Riley's foster father)

Kay (Riley's foster mother)

Riley Dawson

Hideo Minamoto

John Henry

Byron (Riley's foster brother)

Gina (Riley's foster sister) 


Didja Notice?


The pistol Ellison pulls out of a drawer at 0:35 on the Blu-ray appears to be a Glock 17.


Sarah and Cameron infiltrate Dakara Systems. This is a fictitious company.


At 1:42 on the Blu-ray, three flags are seen atop the building housing Dakara Systems. The middle flag is obviously the U.S. flag, but I've been unable to positively identify the other two. The right-most flag has a color scheme similar to the flag of the African continent.


After looking at the hard drives stolen from Dakara, John calls the company's concepts for AI "vaporware", comparing it to the idea that terrorists "have the plans for nuclear bombs...and all they're missing is the plutonium." In computer terminology, "vaporware" is a product that is announced but never produced for sale or is canceled.


John puts together a cheat sheet for Sarah so she'll have an idea of what she's talking about during her investor interview at Dakara Systems. He notes such terms as "neural networks" and "emergent behavior". An artificial neural network is a computing system based on the biological neural network of animal brains, particularly humans. "Emergent behavior" is a systems theory that larger entities can emerge through the interactions of simpler constructs.


Sarah adopts the last name "Gale" for her alias during her interview at Dakara. Like the "Baum" name the Connors have adopted as their identities in The Sarah Connor Chronicles, this would also seem to derive from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum; the protagonist of the novel is Dorothy Gale.


Alex Akagi and Sarah reminisce over the band Duran Duran. Duran Duran is a British new wave band that rocketed to stardom in the 1980s.


During the investor interview with Sarah and Cameron, Xander Akagi remarks that his mother died in a car crash in 1984. It seems odd that he should say that during the interview. That is also the year that the events of The Terminator took place. Since both the current episode and the original film take place in Los Angeles, could it be that the writers inserted the remark as a hint that the car crash that took the life of Xander's mother was the result of one of the car chases in the film?!


At 9:45 on the Blu-ray, it's pretty obvious that the coffee cup Sarah is drinking from is, in fact, empty! This is commonly the case in television and film productions...keep the cup empty (unless it's transparent) to avoid spillage or continuity errors during a scene.


John identifies one of the posters in Riley's room as a shot of Yosemite, telling her he's been there with his mom. This refers to Yosemite National Park in northern California. The poster appears to be a photo of the Merced River flowing past the rock formation called El Capitan.


Xander's favorite game, Go, as explained by Cameron, is a board game which originated in ancient China over 2000 years ago and is still popular today. Her remark that there are more possible Go games than atoms in the universe is, allegedly, true. She also remarks that the game was invented 5,000 years ago; really, it is only known that it was invented over 2,500 years ago.


This episode reveals that Riley is a Resistance agent from the future working with Jesse to stop Cameron from becoming too close with John Connor, in fear that John will become too trusting of reprogrammed Terminators in the future.


Alex tells Sarah he met his wife when she was 19 at a concert of Pink Floyd's The Wall at the L.A. Memorial Sports Arena in 1980 and Sarah remarks that she remembers the concert and she wanted to go so bad. Pink Floyd was a British rock band from (intermittently) 1965-2014; The Wall was their 1979 album, accompanied by a concert tour, which opened at L.A. Memorial Sports Arena in February 1980. The stadium was closed and demolished in 2016 to build a new stadium, Banc of California Stadium, set to open in 2018.


Alex guesses that Sarah must have been about 9 years old when Pink Floyd played at L.A. Memorial Sports Arena in 1980 and she responds only that she was "very young". She was actually about 15 years old at the time from what we know of the Terminator timeline, but in the "current day" of 2007, she has skipped the years of 2000-2006 (plus roughly half of 1999 and 2007) due to time travel in "No One is Ever Safe".


Alex mentions to Sarah a chess tournament sponsored by the U.S. Air Force "a couple months ago". This is seemingly a reference to the events of "Queen's Gambit", though episodes since then have hinted that almost a year has past since then (October 25, 2007).


Does anyone know what Minamoto and Cameron say in Japanese during the dinner signing at the restaurant? If so, let me know at the email address at the top of the page.


After the transaction with Minamoto is completed, Sarah says, "Domo arigato." This is Japanese for "thank you". After Minamoto leaves, Alexander says to Sarah, "I didn't know you spoke Japanese," and she responds, "I was into Styx before Duran Duran." Styx is an American rock band. They had the hit single "Mr. Roboto" in 1983 which features the repeated lyrics "Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto."


A pair of Riley's foster siblings fight over the TV remote and whether to watch Shark Week or "some pillow biters sing and dance". Shark Week is an annual event on the Discovery Channel cable network featuring shark-themed programming. The remark "pillow biters sing and dance" is probably a reference to So You Think You Can Dance, a dance show on the Fox network. "Pillow biters" is a slang term for gay men.


Is anyone able to identify the song Xander is singing as the Akagis and Connors return to Dakara Systems with the chip? Part of the lyrics seem to be something like, "...are watching, day by day he..."


At 25:45 on the Blu-ray, the monitor on Xander's computer appears to have a Real Digital brand name on it. As far as I can tell, this is meant to be a fictitious company.


As Riley approaches the refrigerator at 24:06 on the Blu-ray to get her dinner of leftovers, the refrigerator door is already open a few inches!


Riley has a bit of a breakdown about her foster family's petty concerns when they don't know how good they have it at the moment with "your cold sodas and your Facebook pages" and telling them that it's all going to burn soon.


Alex tells Sarah that his parents used to run a dry goods store in Azusa before WWII and they lost it when they were rounded up for internment at Heart Mountain. Heart Mountain Relocation Center was an American concentration camp for Japanese Americans during WWII, located near Heart Mountain in Wyoming.


Alex tells Sarah that Minamoto is Yakuza. The Yakuza is an organized crime syndicate in Japan.


It's revealed that before he died, Dr. Sherman named the Zeira Corporation's new A.I. John Henry. This is also the name of a fictional American folk hero who fought against a mechanical steam-powered hammer, defeating it, but dying of exhaustion immediately after. In later episodes, we learn that Catherine Weaver intends for John Henry to fight against Skynet on behalf of humanity.


At 29:51 on the Blu-ray, the names of a number of Zeira Corporation employees appear on the communication screen of John Henry. Most seem to be random names, but a couple may be nods to crewmembers on the series. J. Crouch could be Joe Crouch, a video playback technician. C. Brown may be Christopher Brown, a production designer and art director.

Zeira Corp employees


Ellison tells Weaver if she wants to teach John Henry commands, she should start with the first ten. This refers to the ten commandments given by God to Moses at Mt. Sinai in the Old Testament.


Sarah holds her Glock 17 against Alex at the confrontation at Dakara.


Memorable Dialog


don't push it.mp3

losers, castoffs, and rejects.mp3

a poster of a fish.mp3

Strange things happen at the One-Two point.mp3

he's John Connor.mp3

start with the first ten.mp3

I was using your toothbrush.mp3


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