- Title: Leverage – The French Connection
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In “The French Connection” the Leverage team sets their sites on the ruthless owner (Steve Valentine) of a culinary school with ties to organized crime who has cut funding for underprivileged youth, beating up and firing the chef in charge of the project – who happens to be an old friend of Elliot’s (Christian Kane), in favor of promoting celebrities and dealing black market truffles under the table to the highest bidder.
With Elliot taking the spot of the chef at the cooking school and Hardison (Aldis Hodge) in place as one of the students, Nate (Timothy Hutton) goes in as an alternative truffle supplier. In order for the con to work the team will have to rely on the help of Sophie (Gina Bellman) and her theater students, and Parker (Beth Riesgraf) playing the role of a food critic, leaving Hardison alone to break into the safe.
In the episode’s B-story Parker searches for her “thing,” something that she can feel passionate about like Elliot’s love of food. Elliot attempts to share his love of food with Parker with mixed results, but by the end of the episode the thief knows there are things she likes. Although the con isn’t all that complex, the episode has several fun moments including Hardison’s geeky moments with the laser, and the many failed attempts of the local gangster, angry about be cut out as a truffle supplier, to kidnap the restaurant’s new chef.