"Nostalgia"

#MLM-320

Written by Michael R. Perry

Directed by Thomas J. Wright

Edited by James Coblentz

Aired May 7, 1999

Summary: The journey back to the town where she grew up is anything but sentimental for Emma Hollis, who investigates unsolved serial murders with a sheriff she knew as a child.

 

  Season Three on DVD

 

Synopsis:  As twenty-year-old Jan McCall drives her decrepit car along a two-lane rural road in South Mills, Pennsylvania, she notices a flashing red light in her rear view mirror. Jan accidentally drops her marijuana cigarette onto the floor and is unable to retrieve it as she pulls over to the side of the road. A man, his face unseen, steps up to the car and shines a flashlight in Jan’s face. Later, a dog digs up a severed foot that had been buried beneath a shrub. A series of toe rings identifies the body part as Jan’s

Emma and Frank travel to South Mills, where Emma lived for a few years as a little girl. Her childhood friend, Tommy Briggs, is now the town sheriff. It turns out that Tommy had sent the severed foot to the FBI hoping for an identification. Emma tells him that an alligator tattoo on the foot may be the mascot of Everglades University. Sand and sunscreen found on the skin and under the fingernails suggest the victim was killed on a sunny day. Briggs believes the location must be Allehela State Park, a few miles away. Emma, Frank and Briggs meet with park ranger Jerry Neilson. Frank moves towards a lifeguard stand, where he experiences internal visions about the girl’s attack. He orders the area cordoned off. Later, Frank happens upon a new missing persons listing for Jan McCall. A list of distinguishing marks includes an alligator tattoo. Her automobile is listed as an old Datsun. Briggs remembers a similar car found abandoned ten days earlier. The threesome visit a salvage yard. It is determined that the license plate on the car does not match the vehicle identification number. Frank discovers a bloody face print on a window. A partial fingerprint is also recovered. A computer search identifies the print as Jerry Neilson’s.

Police search Neilson’s house for evidence, but come up empty handed. Neilson denies any involvement in the girl’s death. Frank, however, suspects otherwise. Meanwhile, police match four cars found as the wrecking yard to other missing women. Frank notices Neilson’s defensive attitude towards the park. He suspects Neilson may have committed his first murder just outside its borders, something that may have passed for an accident. Upon viewing photos of the missing girls, Frank is drawn to one in particular: Liddy Hooper. Briggs explains that Liddy’s death had been ruled an accidental drowning.

Frank and Emma have Liddy Hooper’s coffin exhumed. It turns out to be empty. Later, Liddy’s daybook "turns up" in the police station. Briggs alerts Emma to the fact that his name, as well as Neilson’s, can be found within. He admits having a sexual encounter with the trashy Liddy. He also warns that many other men from the small community, some of them married, are mentioned in the book. Frank takes a special interest in an entry made on the day Liddy vanished, which mentions a local bar. He questions Lana, a woman who works at the establishment. Frank experiences several internal visions when he enters the bar’s back room. Lana remembers Liddy has "having a thing" for men in uniform, such as police officers and firemen. But she cannot recall Liddy hanging out with Jerry Neilson.

Using an abandoned vehicle report, Frank makes his way to the location where Liddy’s car was discovered. He walks along the wooded edge of a reservoir near a hydroelectric dam. He eventually comes upon a bridge, under which is a cement casting. Frank takes particular interest in a metal ring, which is attached to the casing by a hinge-like pin. He experiences an internal vision of a human foot being shoved through the ring.

Neilson meets Frank at the bar. He proceeds to tell him what really transpired on the night Liddy disappeared. In flashback, Neilson, Sheriff Briggs, paramedic Lee Smith and Deputy Wayne Johnson play cards as Liddy Hooper observes. Wayne "bids" Liddy in lieu of money. He tells the other men that if he wins the hand, Liddy will have sex with Neilson. But Neilson stepped forward and told the men to leave Liddy alone. When the story resumes in the current day, Neilson tells Frank he last saw Liddy passed out in her car, which was parked on the side of a road. He and Frank drive to the location so Frank can look for possible clues. As Neilson listens, Frank describes what happened on the night of the murder. He tells Neilson that the perpetrator wasn’t interested in killing Liddy. He leads him down the river, until they reach the bridge. Underneath is the now-familiar cement casing. In flashback, a figure leads the drunken Liddy down the embankment. The man smashes Liddy’s foot through the iron ring and proceed to drown her. Frank concludes that the killer left the foot of his last victim buried under a shrub because he wanted to get caught to show authorities what he had done. He asks Neilson to show him where the other bodies are buried. Later, Liddy Hooper is at last given a proper funeral.

 

- Jan McCall's foot is discovered

- Frank and Emma survey South Mills

- Frank finds a peeping Tom's hideaway

- Ranger Jerry Neilson, murder suspect

- Neilson immerses himself in his tub

- Liddy Hooper with Sheriff Tommy Briggs

- Frank Black returns to the crime scene

 

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Trivia:  Millennium fans might find the face of Liddy Hooper to be familiar. Actress April Telek first appeared on the series as the stripper Calamity in the pilot episode. Telek has also been seen on such shows as The Outer Limits, First Wave, Dead Like Me, and Stargate SG-1.

 

Guest star Justin Louis, who takes center stage in "Nostalgia" as murderous Park Ranger Jerry Neilson, has been seen on various police dramas including Law & Order, NYPD Blue, Murder One, and Cracker. He would later also appear on The Others, a television series produced by onetime Millennium producers Glen Morgan and James Wong.

 

Death Toll:  1

 

Title:  Nostalgia a bittersweet longing for things, persons, or situations of the past motivates several of this episode's characters. Emma Hollis' visit to South Mills, Pennsylvania prompts nostalgic remembrances of her childhood. In a less wholesome sense, Jerry Neilson experiences his own nostalgia regarding Liddy Hooper and it is his remembrances of the events of the past that help Frank Black to expose his crimes.

 

Soundtrack: "A Perfect Day Elise" by PJ Harvey

 

Starring:

Lance Henriksen as Frank Black

Klea Scott as Emma Hollis

 

Guest Starring:

Ted Marcoux as Jerry Neilson

April Telek as Elizabeth "Liddy" Hooper

David Barrera as Sheriff Tommy Briggs

Blake Stovin as Deputy Wayne Johnson

Jim Shield as Lee Smith

Ron Small as Ron Hauge

Kaitlyn Burke as Alicia

Linnea Sharples as Alicia's Mom

Madeleine Campbell as Cora

Lisa Marie Caruk as Jan McCall

Jennifer Griffin as Lana

R. David Stephens as the Agent

Ian Brown as the Minister
 

Production Credits:

Production #6C20

Music by Mark Snow
Production Designer Mark Freeborn
Director of Photography Robert McLachlan
Associate Producer Jon-Michael Preece
Co-Producer Robert Moresco
Co-Producer Paul Rabwin
Producer Thomas J. Wright
Co-Executive Producer Ken Horton
Co-Executive Producer John Peter Kousakis

Executive Producer Chip Johannessen

Executive Producer Chris Carter

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