Episode 3 stuff
Okeydoke, so here's my take on episode 3. Do what you will with it. As always, my philosophy is: LET'S GET THIS THING SOLVED! Episode 3 is where the chaos all starts. Hence why I'm just skipping 1 and 2 for now. Without further ado...
I think everyone is taking the clues in this series WAYYY too seriously. I try and follow the advice of the creators, be visual, look at the story and what is happening as a whole, and let the clues fall into place. They were surprised it hadn't been found back in May of 2011 (read the interview) I don't think it's meant to be insanely hard.
AT THE BEGINNING OF THE EPISODE:
The crew is at Columbus Circle. I think we can all agree on this one based on the Silver Coast of Africa, the fact that CNN studios is here in Columbus Circle (and Larry King, for that matter), shooting Boarders (Borders) in the face, and the Spectacles/Face Glasses (Lens Crafters) along with probably a million other indicators that we should be standing in Columbus Circle at the beginning of the episode.
THE CREW GETS ON THE SUBWAY:
Another pretty glaringly obvious clue. Mind the Gap in yer face, the Jared (Subway) commercial reference, the subway map floating behind Larry King, and the colors behind the crew's TV boxes. Once we realize this, the fun begins.
I think there are a LOT of theories that chalk up the colors to be the colors of the Orange and Yellow subway lines (I take no credit for this, but it is nice work). I originally was right on board with that theory - the orange boxes meant orange lines and the yellow boxes meant yellow lines. EASY! My personal preferred lines were the B, D, N, and Q. But now I think differently. Here's why:
There are no Yellow lines that you can board at Columbus Circle.
For a while I shook it off and just rolled with it, and had the yellow line-ers begin at the south edge of Central Park. However, I now believe that the colors are just the colors of the subway seats and are yet another indicator to tell us "hey, they get on the subway!" Especially since we are always shown the colors in pairs of 2. A mate's yellow box is never sandwiched between two oranges, for example. Just like the chairs:
Keep in mind that there are plenty of subway cars with blue seats as well, to cover Mario & Fafa.
THE PORT OF CORTLAND:
WHAT THE HECK TRAINS DO THEY GET ON!?:
There is a lot of speculation over what exactly the Port of Cortland is. I think, quite simply, the Port of Cortland is Columbus Circle. Cort=Court? It makes incredible sense. Columbus Circle is just a big old court. Also, it has 5 docks (5 subway lines) that stop there, but 1 of which is detached. On the subway map posted above, we see that the following trains stop at Columbus Circle: A,B,C,D,1.
Either pay a visit to the actual station or the Wikipedia page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/59th_Street_-_Columbus_Circle_(New_York_City_Subway)) to discover that Columbus Circle station has two divisions. Division A (the IRT Line) that services the 1 train, and Division B (the IND Line) that services the A,B,C, & D. Boom. Why make it complicated?
I'll quote the episode a bit:
"Mulligan: And four: There are four of us in our crew and I ain't never seen more than four docks in one port.
Captain: Those be lies Lawrence. There be five docks at the Port of Courtland.
Mulligan: Ah, but you can't SEE all them docks at the same time. That's all I'm sayin' Captain."
OK, so if the colors are the subway seats, then what trains do the crew members get on?
Well, if we take Mulligan's dialogue above quite literally, it narrows it down for us. I like to interpret Mulligan as such: "Hey! What a damn coincidence! There are FOUR in the crew, and FOUR trains at Columbus Circle!"
I'm a firm believer that the crew splits up and reconvenes in Episode 6 when Tom and the Captain show up to slay the snake with Mulligan and Crothers "when their paths are meant to be one." For more on that, see my other posts.
Ruling out the 1, which we can't see from division B, each member of the crew gets on one of the following trains: A, B, C, or D.
I believe the Captain and Crothers board the A and the C. Which is on which is unclear to me still, so I won't go there. But here's the important bit:
Crothers is wearing his fine BLUE hat. Which the Captain tells us on accounts of the picture being in black and white. Also, he won't tell us anything about the fire besides the fact that HE (the Captain) lit it. Well if he's close enough to light Crothers's hat on fire, he's gotta be on the same line.
By process of elimination, Mulligan & Tom are on the B and the D. Again, which is which is still a little unclear. I have clues in episode 5 that lead me to believe Mulligan was on the B, but I'm still ironing out those kinks. Also, there's the question over whether Tom switching boxes at the end of the episode is just innocent ninja-fun, or if it actually means he is transferring from his train to Mario & Fafa's train.
Mario is the M train.
Now, I know that Mario & Fafa are both pre-existing characters, so it does seem a LITTLE TOO coincidental that his name happens to begin with the same letter as the train. I'm skeptical too. But it works. Here's a few reasons why:
1) After the 4 ports bit where we establish which trains the mates all get on, Larry declares that "We are now joined by" Mario & Fafa. If you look at the subway map, just after leaving Columbus Circle heading south, the M & F trains join with the B & D lines. In fact, for a while, they share the exact same path. Since there's only one box for BOTH characters, I think the F train = Fafa is probably just an extra coincidence. I put much more value on Mario being the M train (he also has the M on his shirt).
2) The "hidden image" in the trailer... In the Larry King Episode, Mario offers some photographic evidence that they were at once associated with the pirates. He says in the teaser/trailer, at the part where it goes "duh-duhduhd-uhduhd-..", we can watch frame by frame and we will see him. If we do as he says in said trailer ($10,000 is Buried in New York City), you'll note that around 1:22-1:23 there is a single frame containing this image:
Just as the Captain was with Crothers in his photograph, Mario is leaning on Mulligan in this photograph. At this point in time, the B&D trains share a path with the M train.
3) "How did we get up here": Soon after the photographs sequence, the Captain's comment regarding the "Forked Journalist Tongue" indicates the fork in the Orange Line...
The crew (A,B,C,D) all head south into Brooklyn and the chaotic cluster that is Atlantic Ave, while Mario & Fafa (M) head north into Queens.
THE TICKER IS ACTUALLY KINDA IMPORTANT:
The ticker, as it states, is not a clue to the location of the treasure. However, it does tell us some very important things. More specifically, what we should look out for in the coming episodes that ARE NOT CLUES and should not be mistaken as such. They explain what an homage is, they explain that they are not clues, and they throw in the added fact that the Gorilla is not a clue either. I didn't read into it, I don't think there are any strange cryptic references or reverse-psychology going on here, I took it for what it is.
The big key phrase in the ticker is this one:
"IF YOU SPENT THIS WHOLE EPISODE READING THE TICKER, THE BAD NEWS IS YOU MISSED THE CLUES. THE GOOD NEWS IS THERE WILL BE A QUIZ, AND YOU ARE PREPARED!"
Yeah, watching the ticker the whole time means we missed the actual clues, but we gained some important knowledge as to what IS NOT a clue in the coming episodes, and upon seeing them, we will know to ignore them.
WHERE DOES IT END?
This is tough to say. But it is of utmost importance, as it dictates where to begin with episode 5. Because of Mario & Fafa being "up here", we know that everyone is at least in Brooklyn. Probably somewhere around Atlantic Ave on their respective trains.
Tom is the biggest variable here. It's possible that he ends by transferring from his train to Crothers's and then to Mario & Fafa's, but in Brooklyn I cannot find a logical way for him to do that. It's also possible that he's just messing around and being funny.
Variable 2 is which trains exactly the crew members are on. In episode 3, we can get away with knowing simply which lines they are on as they are mostly shared, but now that in Brooklyn we start seeing splits, it's important to figure out (either in episode 3 or possibly even somewhere in 5) who is on which train exactly.
As always, best of luck to everyone still involved. I'd really like to see the hunt solved, and will continue to try and share what information I find.