Changing Spots (Highlander)

Reviewed by Kathryn A on 15th March 2003 (5)
Tags: Novella

After the events of "To Be/Not To Be" MacLeod doesn't want any more people to die because of him. When Joe has an unexpected heart attack, it proves too much, and Duncan decides that the only thing to do is to kill off "Duncan MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod" for good; let most of his friends think him dead, and take off for parts unknown, learn to be someone new. But can a leopard really change his spots? And while his friends find things a lot more uneventful with him gone, is that what they really need?

While this does have some adventuresome bits, it is mainly a character-intense soul-searching kind of story; and it isn't only Duncan who has things to rethink.

While this isn't a slash story, there are some bits which feel like they were written by a slash writer; for slash fans they could call it pre-slash, for gen fans, just call it intense smarm. Because, boy, is this intense in parts. One of the things I found most interesting was that it wasn't just one of those "Duncan is wrong" things -- I liked the fact that Methos had to re-think his usual way of interacting, with wit and barb, and instead make himself vulnerable. Very human.
    "God Damn it, MacLeod!" Methos growled, his long legs finally overcoming his apparently paralyzed brain and taking him to the passenger side of the car. The two men faced off over the black cloth top of the convertible. "I never wanted you to discard your beliefs, only to not hold to them so tightly that you lost sight of the deeper issues and possibilities. Or worse, throw yourself in harm's way unnecessarily. I don't want you to disappear from my life!"

If you don't think Methos and Duncan could actually care that much, well, you'll probably think this story is a bit over the top. Oh well. I liked it.

Endgame (Highlander)

Reviewed by Kathryn A on 7th May 2003 (11)
Tags: Novel

The summary says: "Darius had a plan to end the Game for all time, but only Methos is left to see the plan carried out." I downloaded this story when I was looking for good Methos stories; but this isn't a solo-Methos story, this is a Methos-and-Duncan story. If you can't stand a story where Duncan is special and Duncan and Methos are brothers-of-the-heart, then this is going to be a waste of time for you. But as it is, this story had me going "wow" by the end of it.

I have read at least one other story in which a similar method for ending the game had been enacted, but in this story it isn't a fluke, and it isn't easy, and it isn't a matter of Power, or not just that. The plan depends so much on individuals; not just their talents, but their relationships, of trust; and the risk is so non-trivial that the key person keeps on saying no until...

But what got me was not just that, but the very human consequences, the price to be paid, of human mistakes, and the way that it is a relationship thing in the end, which must be put right. Good stuff.

Who Watches the Watchers (Highlander)

Reviewed by Kathryn A on 17th August 2003 (4)
Tags: Novella

Normally when one hears the words "Highlander" and "FBI" one puts two and two together and gets "X-Files crossover". It's therefore quite unusual to come across a story where there are FBI agents involved who aren't Mulder and Scully, but I can see why this story wouldn't have worked with them in it -- this needed an original character whose destiny was not entangled in other things, someone who could be dragged in by this mystery and find that his life was never going to be the same again... I really liked this portrait of a character, and a showing of the Highlander universe as it would seem from outside.