In TACMKid, Amanda really doesn’t play a key role in Scarecrow’s mission but she does learn a lot about Lee the person, which in turn shapes her view of Lee. But what do we learn about Amanda in this episode? I found it very hard to focus on Amanda this time, because we learn a lot about Lee. iwsod helped me walk the straight and narrow though and contributed many of the questions -thanks, iwsod!
Amanda gets to see with her own eyes where Lee lives and how he lives – like a pig – in a hell hole – but with an interesting sunglass holder (thanks, KC!). What do you think Amanda was expecting his apartment to be like? I think she is dying with curiosity to see all this, don’t you?
She learns that he has a softer side and just might not be as tough as she thought he was.
Based on her comment to him on the phone, “By kid, do you mean one of those girls you date?” I would think that she disapproves of his playboy lifestyle as well. What do you think this says about Amanda’s views on men and relationships?
I think she admires him as an intelligence operative, but is drawn to him by what she is learning about him personally. Amanda is a nurturer and a helper by nature. And I think she hears Lee *asking* for help with his words and his actions. What do you think it is about Amanda that pushes her in to his life?
I think she likes the softer side of Lee and wants to be his friend, resulting in her wanting to help him (i.e. she cleans his apartment for him and babysits Alexi – even bringing the “young Dillinger” into her house and exposing her boys to him). Which brings up another question…what does Amanda’s handling of Alexi say about her parenting style? I know there are some of you out there who have a thing or two to say about that!
I love this little conversation of theirs on the couch….
I think in this episode Amanda is really starting to believe in him as a spy (…this is Lee Stetson, one of the top American agents) and is actually starting to like Lee the person very much. I interpret her smile in the tag picture below as one of happiness at the thought of Lee showing her some appreciation for helping her on this case.
I love that although Amanda is “just” a housewife, she lets him know that she isn’t going to sit back and take his jokes and she participates in the verbal sparring. She may not be a superspy like him, but he is no expert at every day, normal life.
And call me crazy, but I think she is already having significant doubts about Dan, err, Dean.
The look on her face after their “Aluminum Sun” award dicussion says it all, IMHO. He doesn’t know it yet, but his days are numbered.
One last question…do you think Amanda really wants to hear about Dotty’s love life? We heard about Dr. Bain the chiropodist in ITCKill in that fabulous Dotty ramble, but this time she brings up erogenous zones! Hahaha!
Well that’s it for this episode! If you’d like to have a read of the posts for this episode and remind yourself of what’s in this episode for Amanda- here is the link.
Here are some questions to ponder….and of course feel free to share whatever you’d like!
What do you think Amanda is thinking when she first goes in to Lee’s apartment? I wonder what she was expecting! She calls his apartment a “hell hole” – do you think she meant it?
Amanda seems to be more confident this episode – do you think it’s just because she’s dealing with kids and cleaning? Or is there more to it?
Do you think she is an introvert or an extrovert?
Do you think she had a very big smile on her face after she threw Ricky Joe’s drink in his face and told him the sex was always disappointing???
What about Dean? Do you also think Amanda has already started to think it’s really not going to last between them?
What else do we learn about Amanda in this episode??? There’s lots! And some of it nothing to do with Lee! Likes? Dislikes? Talents? Weaknesses?
Somehow this episode seemed to have a lot to say about parenting and growing up with or without parents. Amanda’s mothering/parenting skills came into play quite a bit and because of that she ends up with a little more insight about Lee. She is able to gauge Lee’s reactions and responses to being parent-like with Alexi and she is able to see more how Lee is affected by the loss of his parents. I think that draws her in more towards Lee. Not only does Alexi need her, but so does Lee.
None of the other adults, including Billy who has kids, could seem to figure out how to deal with Alexi. Didn’t Lee say Amanda had motherhood carved in her bones? She’s open and supportive as a mother and has a tender, nurturing way. But she can also be tough when it is necessary. She is the type of mother that is active and involved in what her boys do and wants to help out. A lot of which could apply to Lee as well.
She probably sees Lee’s apartment in the same way she sees her boys’ bedroom. Initially she probably thought it might be a typical bachelor pad. I think she was a little surprised at what she found. Lee had already shown some persnickety-ness about his car she may have assumed he was a neat freak. The mothering came out when she checked out the fridge and when she checked out the grocery store purchases made by Lee and Alexi.
I think she is starting to feel a pull more towards Lee. I think it touched her when after saying how her affections could be won over by the panda and Lee ends up giving it to her in the end. She doesn’t immediately rush back into the house to be with Dean. She figures it’s from Lee and ponders why she ended up with it.
I like Amanda’s bits of brashness in this episode. She refers to the women Lee dates as kids, she calls his apartment a hell hole, she “hams” it up in the bar, and then ultimately refuses to acquiesce in the end about calling Lee one of the top agents. Makes you grit your teeth more in the episodes with the inept Amanda.
I like all of what you say, Valerie – where is that Like button? I think her reactions to seeing Lee trying to be parent-like are funny. “What are you doing? Going for Father of the Year?” And then later with her asking Lee if he’s trying to spoil Alexi or win his affections – she is definitely having fun watching him trying to do what comes so naturally to her. Even Lee knows it – he does tell Billy that Amanda has motherhood carved in her bones.
I agree that Amanda is starting to feel a pull towards Lee. I think for me this is the first episode when I started to fall for Lee too (in 1983). Who wouldn’t be drawn in by what we see and learn of Lee here? I think that’s why I had such a hard time initially keeping this episode focused on Amanda – I kept thinking about Lee!
Teeth-gritting for sure at inept Amanda! I wonder if it is linked to what Morley says about getting more in-depth into the spy world vs. being on her turf and perhaps having a bit of a crisis in her confidence or wondering if she really belongs and wants to be there doing her job.
I like this episode because she gets a glimpse of a part of Lee that no ones gets to see easily. This isn’t an at the Agency case. And Lee isn’t interacting with her as a trainee either, but as a person who is a Mom. It really begins the personal side of their relationship. You would think that Lee would have been a bit guarded about having her in his personal space, but he isn’t. I think she sees that she is having a unique perspective into Scarecrow. The fact that his apartment is a mess is rather telling as well. If he had people over more regularly he would keep it clean I think, because his public persona is suave, not sloppy. She must recognize that he doesn’t have people in his personal space often. And I think she treats the experience with some honor because I think at some level she recognizes that what she is seeing of Lee is rare.
You would think that since he invited Amanda over that maybe he would at least try to pick up a little himself. I like all of what you say, Morley. It’s funny that I just now realized how Amanda seems to be the only one who is a regular Agency visitor to all of Lee’s apartments. No one else seems to have as much personal access to his living space as Amanda. Interesting…
And I wonder if Lee would have picked up a little bit if he’d had the chance. If I recall correctly, Amanda comes much earlier than Lee had expected. I’m not sure if he would have or not – probably just a little bit, but not to any real extent. And I’m sure it would have just been to pick up or put things away vs. clean or dust and vacuum.
And I’d never thought of this as the beginning of their personal relationship, Morley, but I like that idea. And I never noticed before that Amanda is never at the Agency in this case – great catch!
I do think that Amanda probably is the most regular visitor of his apartment once she starts working with him, but I do wonder if the steno pool women have all been to his place. Maybe he just visits them at their place. I’ll just stop that thought right there.
“And I wonder if Lee would have picked up a little bit if he’d had the chance. If I recall correctly, Amanda comes much earlier than Lee had expected.”
Nope… ‘cos he sure didn’t bother picking up before she came over to fish-sit in SBTB. (Then again, since she’d already seen his pig-sty in TACMK, and cleaned it up, maybe he figured it didn’t matter in SBTB. LOL!)
I think it comes back to that dichotomy again… Smooth, urbane, not-a-hair-out-of-place Scarecrow vs. poor little lost boy Lee Stetson. Amanda’s really the only one he allows to see Lee Stetson, and–as we see here–Lee Stetson’s lair. Everyone else gets to see Scarecrow. Except, maybe, for Billy occasionally…???…
I do think Amanda was interested in seeing the more personal side of Lee, you do learn a lot when you see a person’s living environment. Cleaning another person’s place can be seen as intrusive, but I don’t think Amanda saw it that way, otherwise she wouldn’t have done it (she doesn’t like going through other people’s things). But I think that is what she does and I think among the people she would associate with, other mothers and such, that would be an acceptable and helpful thing. I think she also perceives a cry of help from Lee, because she is also the kind of person to pick up those kinds of vibes from people. She must believe that she is being helpful, to a busy spy.
She is also in Mother mode in this episode. But it really is new ground. Not only are her boys not like Alexi, they are younger than Alexi. A boy Alexi’s age is a whole different animal (at least from my personal experience). And in dealing with Alexi I think Amanda also learns a bit about dealing with Lee. The last part of hat conversation that she had on the couch with Alexi I can imagine her saying to Lee.
I think Amanda seems for confident because she is in her element here as a mother and a nurturer. But I wonder if it may also be because she isn’t as deeply involved with the Agency yet. It is all kind of new and not too frought with complications yet. It can be pretty empowering to begin to see your place in a grand adventure. I don’t know if she has gotten to the place where she is asking if she is cut out for this ye, so far it has been pretty good. She has played the part of a suburban house wife and a mothering nurturing person. and she has helped to solve cases with her way of thinking. I think her comment to Lee was pretty cheeky, kind of went with the kids= girls you date comment.
Yes I think Amanda is an introvert. She enjoys people and she understands them very well, but like BJo said, she recharges her batteries with alone time, not going out with friends time. I think working for the Agency may cause her to become even more introverted because of the secrets she must keep.
Although I do think it is a bit intrusive and maybe a little obsessive, I do think that Amanda truly believes she is helping Lee out by cleaning his apartment. (My husband is like this – it really can drive me nuts sometimes – but he doesn’t understand my irritation because he’s “helping” me so how can it be a bad thing? Ugh – I’ll stop there. Lee is much nicer than I would have been in my reaction.) It sure looks like the place hasn’t been picked up in a while. Even though we don’t see it, I’m guessing she drew the line at the main living area and didn’t clean his bedroom – although I’m wondering about the bathroom…if Lee’s main room was that messy I’m wondering if the bathroom was as equally messy? Did Amanda feel the need to clean the tub before she let Alexi get in it?
I think I would have cleaned the tub. Maybe even to toilet, for hygiene sake. I think I would try to do it with my eyes half closed…;)
Has anyone ever read about love languages? One of them is “acts of service” and I think Amanda operates a lot with that one. not that she “loves” Lee at this point, but it is how she communicates care and even though someone else may not appreciate it that is how she would want to “bless” someone, so she cleans the apartment. The only thing is that Lee doesn’t speak that love language, so he doesn’t appreciate it.
(I also think the messy apartment may be a bit of Lee’s self-destructive behavior)
Hmmm… Amanda might not play a key role, as such, but among other things she looks after Alexi, which frees up Lee to do his job; he couldn’t have done it if he’d had Alexi in tow or if he was having to stay at home watching Alexi.
I can’t really say a whole lot about the parenting question, but I think that it took Amanda a little while to figure out how to deal with Alexi–but once she figures it out, it’s all good. I don’t think Amanda’s had much experience with kids that are a handful–her own boys are pretty well behaved and not rebellious–but her ability to read/understand people and her empathy and level-headedness get her through. She also recognises the similarity between Alexi and little Lee… just as Lee recognises it.
Re: Amanda cleaning Lee’s apartment, I think it’s partly mothering, partly her way of showing that she cares, and also just for something to do while Alexi is otherwise occupied (bathtub, etc).
Amanda’s verbal sparring with Lee shows that she’s not the type to just roll over… and the RickyJoe comment shows that she can get along in the spy world, and also that she has a playful side that’s been mostly hidden so far. She’s also not afraid to “bust his chops” if needed, which is something that I don’t think Scarecrow’s Randi-babes do; she treats him as an equal, not as a Ken doll.
Yep–Dean wasn’t fulfilling her needs. He might’ve been sticking around, like Joe didn’t, but he didn’t challenge her. He was too squishy… too vanilla blancmange.
No–I don’t think Amanda wants to hear too much about Dotty’s love life. I think she’s really happy that her mother’s happy, but she’s not as much of an open book as her mother regarding realtionships and intimacy, and would be perfectly happy not to hear any details, and maybe–more specifically, to not have to give any (and if Dotty shares, Amanda might feel like she was duty-bound to share back… does that make sense?).
I agree, KC – Amanda’s boys are pretty well behaved and a lot less naive than Alexi. But once she takes charge and gives him the what for he comes around and shows her some respect.
KC, I like what you say about Amanda’s not being an open book. Not with relationships and intimacy with Dotty nor with much else. We never really see her interact with any of her friends (Gail in BAIn is the only one I can think of), but I’m guessing she’s pretty tight lipped with them as well. I think I always just attributed that to her need for secrecy because of the Agency, but there are many other things she could share with Dotty that aren’t Agency related that she doesn’t.
Which brings up for the introvert/extrovert question. No one has said anything about that yet. I vs. E is fascinating and I think there is more than one way to look at it. But one aspect of I vs. E that I was taught has to do with energy. After being at a party with a crowd of people that you may or may not know are you energized and ready for more or are you tired and ready to go home for some alone time to recharge your batteries? If you’re ready to party on, then you might be an E. If you need some down time by yourself in particular then you’re probably an I. I think it’s hard to tell what Amanda is from the show so far, but since we don’t really hear much about her friends and all of the things she is doing with her friends, them I’m guessing she is more of an I than an E. Yes, she does a lot of charities and PTA things, but beyond that we hear nothing.
Anyone else have any ideas? I’m sure you must, iwsod???
I think that Amanda might be an introvert–but not drastically so… –> I think she’s close to the middle ground, but falling on the introverted side. Why? Well, for example–though we haven’t seen it yet–she’s initially hesitant to mingle without Lee when she’s his cover/”window dressing”. I think she has self-confidence–I’m not bringing that into the equation–but I think she’d be happier spending a quiet night home with a book than a rowdy night out at a party… the opposite that I think of Dotty. Yes, she does her volunteer work, but that’s something that calls to the soul and is beyond the question of introvert/extrovert unless, I think, you’re drastically introverted. (Speaking from firsthand experience.)
I also think that as time goes on, Amanda appears to become less introverted… by the end of the series perhaps appearing to fall in the middle ground or on the extroverted side… but I think that’s her cover persona–and not necessarily truly Amanda.
Ohh, I believe Dan err Dean’s days were always numbered. He was transition man (my pet theory is that most of us go through a transition relationship after a serious break-up. Poor sod doesn’t have a chance. I’ve been on both sides of the equation — not pleasant either way).
I felt like chucking something at the screen when Amanda was giving Dean the back massage after the day she’s been through (including being tied up and almost bitten by sexy super spy.), but it is clear that what’shisface’s days are numbered.
As to Amanda compulsively cleaning Lee’s apartment? I know people like that and I attribute it to control issues or a little bit of OCD tendencies. (An aside, we had a friend look after the girls for a weekend so my husband and I could get away. I spent weeks cleaning the house because her level of clean is vastly different from mine. Actually even Martha Stewart would look like a slob compared to her. When we got back, I found out she spent the weekend with the girls cleaning underneath the stove and fridge and behind all the couches, etc. I was not impressed.)
And like I’ve mentioned before — I like early season one sassy Amanda. I wonder why things changed (was it a conscious decision by the writers or a gradual slide?)
“I was not impressed.” LOL!!! Too funny, Cindy! I’m guessing the girls never asked you to get her as a babysitter again?
Yeah, if Dean only knew what Amanda’s day had been like, I’m sure he’d not even know what to say. I can only imagine what he thinks of her or what her life is like if he thinks bookends are an acceptable gift after a trip to New York. The guy needs to get out from under the barometer more!
“I like early season one sassy Amanda. I wonder why things changed (was it a conscious decision by the writers or a gradual slide?)”
I like sassy Amanda, too. 🙂 I don’t know why it changed, but I could see it being deliberate if they thought that her sassiness might move the Lee/Amanda interaction along too quickly, and they wanted to keep it slow… Who knows, though?
Conscious decision by the writers or gradual slide?
I see Amanda as jumping right in to the spy business at the beginning. This is exciting and she can’t wait to be helpful and do her part. As time goes by, between Francine’s comments and Lee’s reactions, she begins to feel like maybe she’s bitten off more than she can chew. It isn’t all action and fun, sometimes it’s difficult decisions and real people in real situations. So, she steps back and feels a little inadequate. However, once she’s been at it for a while, she realizes what she does contribute and sees that those contributions have value. Once that’s clear to her, she’s back and in it for the long haul.
I like how you think, debilyn!
I agree with BJo – I love this comment of yours Debilyn.. a great explanation for Amanda’s change in attitude! Makes a lot of sense 🙂 will be interesting to keep an eye on this as we continue with the bite sized Amanda posts 🙂
Hope you had a great holiday! LOL I’m on holiday too only.. I still go online.. LOL!
Sorry who has said they would like to write one or two?? was it Morley and KC?? Anyone else? I’ll be happy to do one or two also.. they are not indepth – but a brief overview or introduction to Amanda’s character in an episode.. designed to get discussion of Amanda started in a bite sized way..
Bjo what episode have you written up to?? what episode is your last?
You know, now that I think about it, Amanda hanging out at Lee’s apartment cleaning and reorganising his things is a little ummm weird! I am very very glad she outgrows this thing of hers! She is not his maid. This is not her apartment.
I think Amanda is resorting to what she knows – being motherly, to support Lee and help him, and he copes pretty well with it, though lets her know he isn’t happy about it.
I think Amanda is anxious to find something to do here to be of help and be involved with the cleaning etc. When Amanda is so much more than that!!!! But I don’t think she has quite seen that yet.
For me, I think the moment at the Lug Wrench Bar- when she throws the drink in Lee’s face and makes a wildly ridiculous statement that ahem couldn’t possibly related to Lee.. is a moment of awakening for her – it was for me – it was a moment where I thought: whoa!!! this straight laced housewife who alphabetises records can come up with an ad lib like that?? and a performance like that? I think it really showed that she has the potential to get into this new spy bizz! And.. I think it shocks Lee too – only he can’t react he has an audience 😉
A triumph like that moment could have given Amanda a confidence boost – when the situation calls for it: Amanda can rise to the occasion! Plus, I think there was a tiny bit of truth in her release of that negativity at Lee: almost like a – There! take that!! I’m somebody! I can contribute here more than you think!! [heck it’s a long time before Lee really accepts that huh!]
Anyway, just some of my rambling thoughts..
Amanda starts off the episode cleaning Lee’s apartment – ugh.. not a fan of that.. but- Ricky Joe’s major disappointment? a pure moment of triumph! 🙂
This also feeds into what you’ve said here BJo about Amanda being ‘just’ a housewife but letting him know she isn’t going to sit back and take his jokes 🙂
Amanda’s parenting style?? oh yeah.. I’ll hold off on that and let someone else answer for now.. but I think Amanda struggles a little with Lee and how to relate to him – she tends to be a little too motherly towards him to start with – it’s a safe role for her I guess.. Maybe it is one of the themes of this episode- how Amanda mothers – sometimes even those she shouldn’t be 😉
The tag.. such an interesting tag in this one!!! What do you all make of Amanda giving Dean a back massage while he rambles on about his tough day? [ and she got kidnapped that day! 😉 ] I agree Lee gave Amanda a new life.. not just a panda! Inadvertently he has given her a passion and enthusiasm for making a difference in the spy bizz.. and what does Dean give her? Book ends!
The panda on Amanda’s doorstep was sweet huh. A friend of mine went to China on holiday-I asked for a Panda!
The aluminum sun conversation is very telling – Amanda talks to Dean like he is 8 years old! Funny.. there goes Amanda reverting back to that mother thing again.. hmm.. only with Lee he doesn’t quite let her does he? Whereas with Dean? I think he laps it up – he’s a taker.. whereas Lee- he’s a taker for the country haaaaaaa.. nooo noo he does also on occasion give things [ hey reminds me of Jestress’ gift giver badge on Neds- fabulous lists Jestress! ]
I’ll respond to the questions later- sorry this whole idea of Amanda and mothering has set me off! LOL! this is getting too long.. I won’t get in to Dotty carrying her passion in her arches till another time 😉
Wowzer, iwsod! Guess this episode got you going, huh? You see Amanda as going from mum to woman here. I never thought about it like that, but it’s true – we see her acting a lot as a mother but then has to switch gears and acts as a spurned wife/lover at the Lug Wrench Bar – very well we all know! I agree – I don’t think Amanda has really seen that she can do this spy job, but she is showing some self-confidence here.
I like what you say about Lee not letting Amanda mother him. It is very true! And because of that she has to act like a woman toward him. I think that is why you say she struggles with how to relate to him. As a single parent, I think Amanda probably first identifies herself as a mother and as a woman second. With Lee, he’s not interested in the mother part as far as he’s concerned so she’s got to figure out this whole woman thing again in the context of who she is as a person instead of just acting like a woman of his type.
And you are so right! Lee is definitely a giver. I’m married to a taker and I know exactly what you’re talking about!!
The “Amanda-mothering-Lee” idea is so interesting! I think that’s why she cleans the apt. She views him as a little boy/ little playboy, not an emotionally mature man, so she treats him like one of her own boys who needs to be cleaned up after. And he doesn’t go for it. Yes, very interesting! Thanks for mentioning that!
Interesting. I always assumed Amanda goes into mother mode because it is much safer to deal with him that way. And I am revealing something of myself because in the past there are a few men I’ve put in the ‘you remind me of my kid brother’ zone to make it easier to work with.
I just wanted to say that I always thought that Lee’s earlier comment about the way to do a kitchen is to hire some guy with a French name to do it for you was a little strange after seeing what his apartment and kitchen really look like. This doesn’t look like a place that’s been professionally decorated, does it?
I think he’s referring to decorating a kitchen in a house… but Lee lives in an apartment, which isn’t somewhere you’d typically decorate like you would/could in a house. Just my 2 cents…
Yeah, probably. I suppose the whole professional decorator thing was just based on what other people he knows told him. Maybe Francine. She seems like the type to go to a professional decorator since she also hires professionals to cook and clean for her. Billy doesn’t seem as much like the type, especially since he’s got a family to support and probably wouldn’t be as willing to spend the money. Plus, he mentioned going skiing as part of the process, and Francine looks more like the skiing type than Billy. 🙂
LOL!! Billy does not look like the skiing type!
“Nobody’s ever looked at me and went, ‘You ski, don’t you?'” — John Pinette. 🙂