The Methosian Sprawl:
A Brief Analysis of the Art Form
by RuaMor

 

While Methos has always seemed to drape nicely in a chair, in a few select episodes of Highlander, the viewers have been treated to a specific art form, now dubbed the Methosian Sprawl. I first became aware of it in "`Til Death" when Methos scrunched down on MacLeod's sofa on the barge, easing his long legs off the edge and easily spreading them for comfort. It wasn't exactly a look of relaxation, but it was apparently a good way to enjoy tea and cookies while Mac tried to cajole him into helping him reunite Robert and Gina.

This was truly the first time I noticed that Methos enjoyed merging with the furniture, shifting his long, lean form to become a part of it. His whole upper body became the back of the sofa while his own legs replaced those of the sofa-- or was it more like he became a chair on the sofa? One knee rocked back and forth as he talked, an indication of his ease in MacLeod's barge. Even Mac couldn't adapt that well.

But had there been an earlier indication of this art? In reviewing "Methos" I found that indeed there was a hint of what was to come. When MacLeod found Adam in his flat and Adam turned to face Mac and toss him a beer, the legs shifted around to a one knee up, other leg cocked at an angle position while his torso settled comfortably against the bed. The "floor sprawl" was innocent, not suggesting any of the sensuousness of the future. It was a charmingly relaxed move and subtle way to put Mac at ease in his presence.

While "Chivalry" hinted at a sprawl as Methos settled on Mac's sofa at the end, it was not truly realized on screen although I suspect it was there. No, this could not be classified as a true sprawl. Moving on to season 5, the next sprawl moment came in "The Messenger" when Mac came up to his loft in Seacouver to find Methos sprawled across his bed listening to music. There he was, his head resting back on pillows while his legs were spread, one knee comfortably bent to balance the picture. As he pushed up on one elbow, the whole scene became alarmingly provocative. I found myself desperately needing something cool to drink. Where did Methos find such ease with his body that he could offer such an open invitation to -- Mac???

"The Messenger" was a tour de force of sprawl, in fact, as Methos demonstrated his ability to take the sprawl to the bar where he propped elbows against the bar and slouched across a bar stool. This is not easy to maneuver (have you tried to balance across a bar stool?), yet the artistry of the sprawl is evident. The total ease in achieving it and making it look perfectly natural is to be applauded. Although the camera didn't allow us a good view, he appeared to have summoned yet another sprawl of sorts in Mac's office while he, Joe and Mac discussed Richie, but this was a more traditional look with leg crossed across one knee, except for the slouched down posture that suggested Methos was as close to a sprawl as he could manage in that chair. And the final sprawl of the episode was on Mac's sofa at the end as he spread his elegant bluejean clad body across the seat, one knee comfortably bent.

Then came the sprawl de resistance, that of the Methos called "Doc" in "Modern Prometheus." Here we find the art at its purest, most evocative form. Clad in the tight fighting trousers of the nineteenth century, Methos looked positively stunning and his tall, sexy body seemed almost too large for the furniture of the era. Perhaps this is a clue to the source of the sprawl. Here the loveseat-sized sofa he draped his luscious body on became merely a rack to hang his appendages over. Shifting his weight easily, he could alter the sprawl to a grab as a lady swept past and just as smoothly, regain the prior position with a slight variation. This sprawl was openly inviting, daring hands to touch his strongly muscled thighs. It set blood racing and a gasp stuck in my throat as he spread his legs even wider.

Was "Modern Prometheus" the source of this sensual, rousing art form or was it merely a high point? In Methos' long past, had the form had even more finesse or rawness or is it something that he will continue to evolve and fine tune in the future? Breathlessly, I await more examples of the "Methosian Sprawl."