7/15 Season Two, Episode 21: Burn Out-Scarecrow and Mrs King

Moving on from ‘the slap’! The next day, we find 2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001189255ourselves at Brackin Import/ Export – time to really meet the head baddie.. duh duh duuhhh!!!
Jack is talking with his hairy godfather – Brackin.
Brackin: Well, if everything went so well, why wasn’t a meeting set up?
Jack: Because we were interrupted by this lady, a friend of his, Mrs King.
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[Interesting, Jack has found out Amanda’s full name – Lee introduced her as ‘Amanda’ -My guess: From Ned the helpful bartender- booo Ned! Winking smile I think Ned wasn’t to know and was just being friendly-I don’t think Ned knows anything.]
Brackin: Who just happened to wander by while you were talking?
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[whoo Brackin has a moustache! He means business!!!]
Jack: Yeah!
Brackin: Did you check on her?
2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001206072Jack: Uh huh. Like I was saying… King. Amanda King. Ned thinks she works on a part time basis for IFF, as a secretary or something.
[Ah! see there you go- Ned filled him in!!

Oh and if Ned is correct- we’ve 2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001206873finally been told on what basis Amanda is employed at the agency! sheesh!]
Brackin: Or maybe a lot more.

2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001209275Jack: Ha ha, I don’t think so. She didn’t look the part.
Brackin: Well what do you expect, Harris? Someone with a neon sign hanging around their neck that says ‘agent’?… [LOL  yeah! Amanda is obviously a real pro! I bet if Brackin saw her groceries he’d say she’s a top agent who makes
2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001214881a wicked salad! Winking smile ] …Now look. I spent nearly ten years with the agency and I know exactly what the procedure is when a top field man like Stetson breaks… [EH??? I’ll come back to this!!! ] …They put a watchdog on him. That’s who Mrs King is.  [Amanda the watchdog. I kinda like it Winking smile ]
Jack: I did see her the other day.
[Very interesting.. a big Fail goes to Jack here IMHO! He witnessed the slap, and the intense interaction between Lee and Amanda – I think he would have been right to assume they had a much more personal relationship than agent and watchdog! but.. he misses the clues and only sees the confirmation of Burn out! ]
Brackin: You’re damn right you saw her. She’s glued to Stetson until they can figure out if he’s salvageable.
[Okay- I’ll address this now – if this is standard, and Lee is suppose to look like he is really burning out- where is his real watchdog?? doesn’t seem like he has one!!! If that is normal procedure Lee and Billy should have followed it! This would provide further confirmation of Lee’s compromised status at the agency no? I guess they didn’t count on the baddie being an insider who knew agency protocols? but.. why wouldn’t they know that’s a possibility? This is weird logic to me here! A plot hole schmot hole? Yep, well weird logic like this usually, accidentally put Amanda in harms way! ]
Jack: I can save them the trouble. Stetson’s a wreck. He’s drinking like a fish, not showing up to work. He’s ready to jump.
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Brackin: Then I want him. Stetson’s the best man they got. Those other three are worthless. With him we can make all kinds of deals.
Jack: Yeah, Like what?
Brackin: Like making a fast 3 million dollars. And I don’t want Amanda King to make us miss him.

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[So Brackin has already figured out how Lee can make him a lot of money huh.. that was fast work- he only found out who the guy was yesterday! no?]
2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001253319Jack: I can handle her.  [Oh yeah?!]

Brackin:  Well, you do that. You do that soon. She’s probably talking to Melrose every hour.
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[Lee and Billy may have underestimated this guy- he doesn’t seem to be one of those dumb smk baddies! Winking smile]

BTW- Just wanted to add, love the shot of the baddies talking looking down- reminds me of a similar shot they used in TGTN – where Bobbie Bouchard is talking to his mommy! [are you proud of me mommy?!]
69 bobby talks to mummy
I wonder if that was intentional.. another baddie..

Well, the baddie scene ends there and we are back at IFF..what do you know-Amanda IS talking to Billy! 😉 Love the super happy knock on the door! Amanda is over compensating 😉 Amanda approaches Billy, smiles and hands him Lee’s report.
Amanda: Lee’s report sir. 
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[Love how she says that- with a big smile too! haaaa.. like she doesn’t want to lie..but she will try her best to help Lee here in anyway she can.]
2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001265331Billy: Thank you, Amanda.
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Amanda: Yes sir.

Amanda doesn’t hang around.. she tries to get out of the office in a hurry! haaaaa.. but Billy asks her before
2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001268535she gets out the door: Did Lee do this himself?..

(Amanda stops at the door, keeping her back to Billy she listens to his question.)

2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001269302…I mean it’s pretty complete… (Amanda turns to face Billy) …for a man who considers 12 to 12:05 a full working day. 2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001269336
Amanda: Well, sir, they’re, they’re done, aren’t they?.. 2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001274941

Billy gives Amanda a knowing look- reading between the lines
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I think Billy looks at Amanda here like- well, this is good of her to do his report for him! 🙂 He admires her..
Amanda continues a little shyly, but to me she is also determined:
Sir, I’d just like to say one thing. Umm…
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…Even though Lee’s going through a pretty rough time, I think we should all remember…
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…that he’s really a, a very, well, a  dedicated,…
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and a caring, and,..
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[Amanda pauses her searching for the words – slowing this moment down- right here- Amanda looks soooo sad!!! Sad smile ]
…well, a good person.
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[Amanda finishes her say as always- with a hint of a smile. Trying to rise above her sadness. She is truly brave and wonderful]
Wow wow.. Billy is silent a moment in response – the look on his face here to me..
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is sadness and regret –
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I think he regrets the ‘necessary evil’ of putting Amanda through all this.. [yes shame on you Billy! grr.. Oh well.. he did.. and here Billy has the opportunity to really see Amanda for the wonderful, loyal, brave woman that she is. ]
Billy responds quietly: 
I’ll keep that in mind, Amanda.
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I think there is truth in that statement of Billy’s, it’s not just a phrase. He is going to keep it in mind, now more than ever – what this flippin agency asks of people.. and the sadness he has caused Amanda- he won’t forget this in a hurry. Not laughing about scarecrow losing it now are ya!
Amanda: yes Sir.
2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001295762Amanda: Ahh. Well, I’d better go. I’ve got to go up to Reston and pick up some flowers from Peterson’s Nursery.
Billy looks silently at Amanda here, it’s almost like he isn’t absorbing what she is saying to him. Billy now looks at Amanda with full-blown admiration!
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It’s like he is suddenly overwhelmed by how wonderful and classy this woman is standing in front of him.  You know??  Maybe Billy doesn’t want to lie to Amanda either – so he says nothing.. anyway- it’s lovely!
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Billy manages to nod, Amanda nods and smiles and mumbles ‘yes sir’ and turns and leaves. Probably a little confused by Billy’s response here – more confusion for Amanda.. ahem.. given the cover and how Billy was suppose to feel about Lee – you would not expect Billy 2.21 BURN OUT.avi_001306172to accept so warmly Amanda’s affirmation and defence of Lee.. well this is my opinion – and it is a further clue for Amanda that something is going on here that she doesn’t yet understand.
Billy watches Amanda leave..
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I like to think the little scowl and pensive expression we are left with has Billy questioning his decision to have kept Amanda out of the loop here –
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I’m not sure he’d say it was a mistake, but I like to think Billy would have at least asked himself whether he’d done the right thing.
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Billy has always understood better than Lee up to now, just how Lucky Lee is to have Amanda!!! Although, I think Lee is in the process of doing lots of catching up in that respect! Billy feels for Amanda.. (so give her a pay rise Billy!!)
Uh oh.. as Amanda leaves Billy she mentions where she is headed?? That’s a sure sign something is about to happen to her!!! 😉 There was an agent Peterson at some stage.. that name must be referring to someone – though I can’t work out who.. maybe the director’s mother’s maiden name Winking smile 

So, this is the day after ‘the slap’ and we can see here how Amanda has responded- she hasn’t given up on Lee. She is still his champion, trying to help him this time in a different way (indirectly)- by doing his report, and appealing to Billy to remember Lee’s good- and to not give up on him.

I am struck by how big a deal it was for Amanda to approach her boss and make an appeal on Lee’s behalf. She had no way of knowing how Billy would respond to it- and I think that was a risky thing for her to do- Lee is suppose to be ‘poison’ at the agency. She could have been criticised for supporting Lee.. Amanda respects Billy a lot- so I find this Huge! Bigger than doing Lee’s report.. though that was great too.

We are left to surmise Amanda’s view on things here I guess.. maybe we will learn more in the scene at the restaurant – I don’t remember exactly what was said.. we’ll get to that scene in the next post I think.

So please feel free to share your thoughts on where Amanda is at.. what went on in her mind overnight? Did Amanda go home yesterday and question whether Lee really was a good man? What do you think?

I’ll share what I think below.. but if you’d like to share your thoughts first and then come back and read mine – feel free to do that.. I find I think best without hearing what others think first. Sooo I’ve left my thoughts on Amanda till the end of this post to aid this- skip them and come back to them if you like – Do you like this idea? maybe I should do that more often?? do tell! I’m always open to improving things!

Okay.. so here is iwsod’s thoughts on Amanda:

I love that we see Amanda is on Lee’s side – and this is before Lee has apologised or she finds out what is going on.

I am reminded here of the episode Spiderweb – I remember there was discussion about whether Lee doubted Amanda at any stage. I think there were some different opinions on that – but my view was that Lee never did. He may have been utterly confused, and had no idea what was going on or why.. but he never doubted whether Amanda was who he thought she was – A good person.
Here- I think is Amanda’s turn… maybe it depends on how you define ‘doubt’ but to me it means you are unsure of someone.
When Amanda asks herself: is Lee a good man?? or do I not know him?
-If the answer is: I don’t know..
then she is doubting him.
-If the answer is: yes he is a good man. I know him. What’s happening?..
then that is not doubting.

I think Amanda is not doubting – in the same way I think Lee never doubted Amanda in Spiderweb. She’s hurt, confused, scared, and trying to process it all – but I think the one fact in all this craziness that Amanda does know and doesn’t question is that Lee Stetson is a good person.

I don’t think I can conclude at this stage that Amanda has worked out Lee is undercover, but I have seen evidence that she is wondering if that is the case [case or no case, Lee shouldn’t have hit her- just making sure you know I’m not excusing it!]
– her glances at Harris, seeing him there with Lee twice…[in his dutch boy haircut.. ahem.. thanks for that image BJo! 😉 ]
-the devastation on Lee’s face immediately after slapping her and then the sudden pushing away at the door, there are a lot of mixed signals going on!
-Then, Billy’s reaction to Amanda defending Lee, this hints that Billy knows something Amanda doesn’t [A bit like warm Billy at Lee’s funeral telling tearful Amanda to go home and that tomorrow would be better].
-Lastly, Amanda may even wonder whether Lee is on a ‘Savior’ type mission again.
Oh dear.. I have jabbered on! oopsie….
Soooo what do you all think?? do tell!! Back with more soon!  I’m thinking we should fit in the next two posts before christmas! Is the pace okay? I have visitors coming after christmas so things won’t pick up till the new year – plenty of time to catch up if you are falling behind!! byeeeeee

92 responses to “7/15 Season Two, Episode 21: Burn Out-Scarecrow and Mrs King

  1. Where is the rest of this ep? I hit Next and I get Christmas stuff instead.


    • Hi Molly,
      If you click on the next post button, keep clicking though all the christmasy posts and you will eventually get to 8/15 burn out.
      It’s like this because as you can see when 7/15 burn out was originally published, it was 18 December, so we had a few christmasy blog posts and then went right back to continuing the walk through the episode.

      Welcome to the blog by the way.
      Note – comments aren’t responded to by bots here, I’m a human, and so are the fellow smk fans who stop by – so do join in and say hiya!

      Hope we will hear more of your thoughts about other episodes and the thoughts of other smk fans which they have shared with us all here. Enjoy!


  2. Pingback: 5/ Season Three, Episode 11: Wrong Way Home–Scarecrow and Mrs King | "Just walk with me.."

  3. Lots of really good viewpoints, unfortunately am too busy at the moment to do them justice or indeed post much of my own but I am enjoying reading all yours 🙂

    Just one comment…….Brackin? Hot? Noooooooo only man who can carry off a ‘tache is Magnun PI 😉


  4. Could we add “baddie Persian rug” to the watch list of baddie items (the phone, are there others?)? I’m pretty sure Brackin’s rug was Frankie’s rug in LOTP.


    • Oh really? haaaaa well spotted LASinLA! definitely part of the baddie props cupboard haaaaa.. It’s the big refined rug under which they try to sweep all their dastardly deeds muahahahaahaa!!! Hmm., would you like to give it a name LASinLA? 🙂 from now we can keep an eye out for it together! 🙂


  5. Hi Everybody!! I was just looking at The Long Christmas Eve, and wouldn’t you know it – Burn Out gets a mention!!!
    The episode starts with Ted Rudolph wanting to come in from the cold.. well you know how the episode goes.. Anyway Lee, Billy and Francine are discussing Rudolph’s background and there’s this little exchange:
    Lee: If he wants to come in, then he must be in trouble.
    Francine: Oh, his control hasn’t heard from in three weeks. He said he’s been acting very strangely over the past three months. He thinks it might be burnout syndrome.
    Lee: I’m not surprised. The guy’s been walking a tightrope for fifteen years.

    Very interesting that this possible Burn out is in the context of being Undercover!!!

    The Long Christmas Eve also highlights how the agency discards it’s agents – which I think is one of the MANY themes of the Burn Out episode..
    There is this exchange when the creepy boss Lucas basically Rudolph is not worth rescuing:
    Billy: Uh, we haven’t been able to reach Stetson.
    Lucas: Oh. It might be academic. The security committee has decided to dispatch a commando squad if he’s not back here with Rudolph by seven P.M.
    Billy: Now wait a second, Lucas.
    Lucas: This comes from the man himself, Melrose. He was quite specific, and I quote, “I am not prepared to compromise the entire covert operations network for one burned out agent.”
    -This is the word from the Top Man (Blue Leader?).. tells me this is normal culture at the agency.

    I can think of a future episode where Burn Out comes up again – but really don’t want to go there for now- but when we get there- we will definitely be coming back to this episode!!! Can anyone think of any other episodes we’ve covered up to now where it is mentioned? if so do tell! 🙂
    How appropriate that Burn Out has a Christmas Episode connection!


    • Hahaha…can I think of other episodes prior to this one where burn out is mentioned….hmmmm….uh noooo….I didn’t even make the connection on TLCE and I’m in the middle of doing the flippin’ stats on it! Seriously, though I can’t although for some reason The Mole is popping into my head – so maybe it’s in there?


  6. Iwsod, love the new holiday banner at the top. Lovely Amanda and gorgeous Lee in a tux, 6 times!


  7. Lots of good Amanda discussion here. I agree with a lot of what’s been said, especially about how hard it is to not enable destructive behavior (i.e. alcoholism) when you are the caregiver, parent, etc. But I agree completely that it is true that the person needs to hit rock bottom in order to truly recover themselves. I have a family member going through this right now as we speak – it is very difficult to sit back and watch, knowing there really is nothing I can do to help except to pray that rock bottom isn’t permanent – for anyone.

    Okay – back to Amanda and what I think is going on with her. In one of my post 6 comments, I said that I thought Amanda was having a moment of doubt where Lee is concerned. And I still think that Amanda did have a moment of doubt about who Lee really was and if he truly was the good man she thought he was and if he continued to deserve her loyalty and devotion.

    I see how you have defined doubt, iwsod, and I agree with it, so I am saying that I think her answer is I don’t know – at least initially. I think it truly is a short-lived doubt, but I bet she has an evening filled with nail-biting (great call, Melissa!) and lots and lots of thought about Lee, their friendship, her life, her job at the agency, etc. I’m surprised there isn’t a fanfic about this out there. Or is there and I don’t know it? (After we finish with this episode, I’m guessing there might be one soon!)

    Why do I think Amanda’s answer is I don’t know? Here’s an attempt at an explanation. Bear with me! And please remember I’m much better with numbers than with words 🙂 The strongest piece of evidence to me is what Amanda says to Billy about Lee in Billy’s office. She tells Billy that they should all remember that Lee is a dedicated, caring and good person. I think she has spent the better part of her night recalling all their cases together and thinking about the growth of their relationship and has come to the conclusion that Lee IS dedicated, caring and good. I think she feels it is important to say these things out loud not only to Billy but to herself. Sometimes when you say something out loud to someone else you can tell if you really believe it or if you’re just trying to convince yourself that you believe it. I think it’s important for Amanda to say these things out loud because I think she did have a moment of doubt about Lee. It reminds me of Peter in the Bible where he denies knowing Christ three times. Later on, Jesus asks Peter three times if Peter loves Him and Peter says yes three times. When Amanda tells Billy that Lee is dedicated, caring and a good person, in my mind she is restoring or wiping away any doubt, regardless of size, she had about Lee – like Peter did about Jesus. And I think these three words are exactly the three words Amanda would choose after being slapped. I can hear in my head Amanda saying to herself that he wouldn’t slap me if he was dedicated to me. He wouldn’t slap me if he really cared about me. He wouldn’t slap me if he was a good person. I used to know these things to be true about Lee so I will wipe away any doubt in my mind and go forward, acting as if I have no doubt and try to help him where I can.

    A second reason I think she had a moment of doubt is that she’s had a failed marriage. I would imagine going into her marriage to Joe she thought that they would live happily ever after. When it didn’t work out that way, it left a mark on her and I don’t wonder if that mark isn’t whispering in her ear telling her that perhaps she is wrong about a man again.

    And lastly, although Amanda does seem to be a great judge of character and reading people, she doesn’t always get it right. Examples of this are Ballon in Savior, the Dodger, Professor Hanover in TLODG, Sinclair in BAI and Mrs. Farnsworth.

    I agree that Lee didn’t doubt Amanda in Spiderweb, but that was different to me. In Spiderweb, Lee never actually sees Amanda doing anything wrong or out of the ordinary – he is told. (Yes, there is the date with Brice Topping, but having dinner with someone isn’t out of the realm of possibility – Amanda is a beautiful woman.) And she doesn’t cross any lines with Lee personally. Plus she is the good, naïve, housewife to Lee’s wordly playboy. It’s easier to me to see how Lee wouldn’t doubt Amanda. Here, Lee does something terrible, something she probably never would have believed he’d ever do to her and while she does know him pretty well, I’m not sure how much of his past she knows about him – a lot of it is classified.

    On a separate note, had the episode not gone the way it did, I think that Amanda finally got the message from Lee this time and would have stayed away from him. Fortunately for us, typing up Lee’s report was one way should could continue to help Lee (in her mind) without getting near him again.

    Finally, I’m not sure that Amanda has any idea that this is a cover for Lee. I’d like to think that Amanda wouldn’t think Lee would slap her even for the sake of the job. If anything, I might think it would cause her to think like Jack and make it all more believable.

    I’ll stop there – I hope at least some of this makes sense. I’m not looking to convert anyone to my way of thinking, just trying to share my thoughts on one of my top 5 episodes (I think) of the series I love so much.


    • Hiya BJo – ohhh I think you sell yourself short- you are great with words! 🙂
      You’ve explained really clearly what you think and why. Thanks for sharing it with us knowing we may disagree – but that we still want to hear all points of view!!

      I hear what you’re saying. You think it was a small moment of doubt on Amanda’s part and then she full heartedly supported Lee. There is a beauty in that! 🙂 I actually think we aren’t told for sure if there is any doubt on Amanda’s part – I chose to interpret it that way as Amanda never doubting Lee even in spite of his slap.
      The episode doesn’t tell us the answer – all we know is she was confused and upset, and the next day she was supporting Lee – we are left to speculate about what happened in between! [Typical!!when it comes to Amanda- no?!] So I am not surprised to hear others see this differently [you might notice I was pretty specific in how I defined doubt- as I figured some of us would see Amanda as doubting- and I am sure others see it the same way you do BJo!]

      I would have gone with your interpretation BJo if this episode had been mid season one.. but towards the end of Season two, after ship of spies, a relative situation, spiderweb, life of the party, odds on a dead pigeon?.. I see them as having gone through so much together that for me, I don’t see Amanda doubting Lee. I see this episode as being where Lee sees how much Amanda trusts him and supports him-he really puts her to the test here in this episode with this slap- and she passes with flying colours 😉 . I think the audience already knew more or less how much she trusted Lee.

      I think you and I have the same evidence – and interpret it completely differently! Fascinating! I hope you’ll keep sharing your thoughts as we continue on – we may see a few things further down the line differently if we see things differently at this stage – that’s quite likely.

      Amanda’s failed marriage to me doesn’t factor into things.
      To me – Joe was.. Meh! A relationship she fell into when at university.. and never really questioned. She was on autopilot and doing what nice girls do.. gettin married and popping out babies.. lol!
      With Lee, Amanda has both a professional and a private relationship. I am 99.9% sure that Amanda didn’t have the life experiences with Joe that she has had with Lee by now. Lee and Amanda have faced danger and death together many many times, and have proven their trustworthiness to each other time and again. It’s how they’ve gotten to be where they are now. Again, this relationship being in the context of the spy biz alters how I would usually interpret things.

      I think in his own way, Lee has as strong values as Amanda – he has a very strong sense of right and wrong and justice. and He never doubted (LOL) once he slapped Amanda that he should not have done that. Amanda has been watching Lee fight for what is good for a few years now – The Colonel’s story of how little Lee fought a group of boys to defend his little girlfriend Alice- it’s in Lee’s DNA to protect women.. being a playboy is a bit different.. someone [apologies please let me know this was you!] put it beautifully in the last couple of days describing how Lee is with women and how he doesn’t mistreat them, even though he played the field. Anyway.. sorry I digress.

      I think the majority of the time, Amanda is an extremely good judge of character. Ballon is the exception-he tricked her totally. The dodger, Hanover, Sinclair- I think she suspected something wasn’t right – and didn’t listen to her intuition – I agree Amanda is not perfect, but to me, she is very adept at reading people.

      So there you go! what do others think?
      I’m not trying to change your mind either BJo! It’s great we can share and think differently!
      Why is this one of your top five BJo? or.. oopsie is it too soon for me to ask this? tell me at the end if you like!!

      Oh and you like Brackin eh BJo! .. well he is looking pretty good next to dutch boy there. ahem..
      In support of BJo having the hots for Brackin (haaa) the script describes Brackin as: roughly-handsome, about 45, trim and powerful-looking.
      BJo’s type? 😉 te hee


      • Thanks, iwsod – glad it made sense! And in a way I’m glad they episode doesn’t tell us what she was thinking – it makes room in the world for wonderful things like this blog where we can discuss it ad nauseum and still never really know!

        I think I understand what you mean about having a different interpretation if this episode had aired mid season one instead of late season 2. For me, that still doesn’t make enough of a difference to fully sway my thinking. Yes, these two have been through so much and their friendship has really grown since TFT, but I only see Amanda completely trusting Lee with her life – not with her heart; not yet anyway. I think because she doesn’t fully trust him with her heart yet, there is room for her to have a moment of doubt. I think it’s still a while yet before she thinks she can trust Lee totally with her heart. But that’s a whole other topic now, isn’t it? 😉

        This ability to trust with her heart I think is also influenced by her failed marriage to Joe. I would think someone as optimistic and positive as Amanda would have been very much marked as a result of the divorce. Joe may have been meh and perhaps she was on autopilot, but Amanda strikes me as someone who would take her wedding vows very seriously and would be affected by her and Joe’s failed marriage. Because of what we see in S4 of Joe, I think the divorce was amicable and she’s made the best of it, but it had to have affected her. I think divorce in the early 1980’s was still relatively uncommon, esp. compared to now. We rarely see it in the show that I recall (icky Warren Davenport points it out – check out Amanda’s immediate reaction), but I wonder if Amanda felt a little stigmatized because she was a divorcee. I think she also tells Connie Barnhill she’d divorced in Mongoose, but he isn’t fazed by it. Do we see it elsewhere?

        I think this is one of my top 5 episodes because it gets such high marks in several categories that I use to rank SMK in my mind. The hair don’t and Dutch Boy aside, this episode has it all. I’ll try to remember to explain at the end, but please feel free to prompt me again – I’ll probably forget if you don’t!!

        Oh – see I knew there was a reason I thought Brackin was good lookin’! He sounds a bit like an older version of Lee. Powerful, huh? Guess I go for that type. But wait…you should see my husband…LOL – he is a choir boy! Hahahaha! Literally! His voice is very powerful – that’s it. Oh dear, better stop.


        • Melissa Robertson

          I have to agree that Amanda’s divorce has effected her, it would have had too. I agree that her and Joe have a friendly divorce, but honestly I think on the show they were protraited too friendly 🙂

          I like what you say that she can trust with her head not with her heart yet, but I think by the end of this episode that it starts to change for her. This episode is #1 for season 2 for me with Murder B/W Friends #2. I just feel that these two eps. are a big growing times for Lee and Amanda’s relationship.


    • BJo, you were amazing with your words. You always write well thought out and detailed responses. It makes perfect sense. I read what your wrote and I thought to my self that it could really have been that way, and then I read Iwsod’s response and agreed with her as well. I am double minded. But actually I think that isn’t too far off from where Amanda is right now. She could be very double minded. I don’t think it is easy to see clearly during a time like this. Hind sight is very clear though, usually. I think she may have some clear reasoning for believing one thing and then have a whole other set of thinking to make her believe it could be the other way. But she chooses to act with the faith in Lee, although I think even there she may be a bit tentative because she is just doing his report. She needs a sign from him to know which way to place her feet permanently, but she isn’t going to demand it from him right now and fortunately she never has to.
      I think there may be some merit to your comment about the failed marriage, BJo. I think it would always be a reminder that things may not always go as you thought that they would go, and it could put a crack in one’s foundation of confidence in their own judgment. I do agree with Iwsod as well though that Amanda and Lee have been thrown into so many situations that prove what is in a person deep down. They do probably know each other’s characters better than many married couples. Just another reason why Amanda would have her doubts. Trust, faith, love. Those are the themes here and they are never more highlighted than in uncertain circumstances. The triumph of these three is not as great when the person needing to exhibit them knows beyond a shadow of a doubt, trust, faith and love shine even brighter when they are a choice being made. I love the way Amanda choses these three.


      • “Trust, faith and love shine even brighter when they are a choice being made. I love the way Amanda choses these three.” Beautifully put Morley! She’s not blind to Lee’s faults but continues to invest in him. To quote Harry Potter aka J.K. Rowling (yep, another rabbit hole I’m lost in):
        “You think I’m a fool?” demanded Harry.
        “No, I think you’re like James,” said Lupin, “who would have regarded it as the height of dishonor to mistrust his friends.”
        Isn’t that Amanda to the core?


        • Whooooooo to me that sounds just like Amanda!!! Love it Jule- thanks!!

          Hey everyone.. will there be a riot if I don’t publish the next Burn out post until after Christmas? I don’t want to squeeze it in before Christmas – I want us all to be able to enjoy it – as it is the scene in the restaurant.. okay?

          So we’ll have BJo’s stats posts on The Long Christmas Eve, and I’ve written a post full of smk Christmas trivia, a poll etc. so I think that will give us our smk fix over the Christmas week – without putting heavy demands on people’s time to respond or join in on the conversation.

          I want to publish the next part now! LOL..but overall we might get more out of it if we wait!

          Okay byeee for now


      • Well put Morley!

        Not having been married, maybe I underplay the impact of Amanda’s first marriage failing. We really don’t find out much about it do we- typical! we are left to surmise about Amanda.. grrr.. I have always thought the relationship didn’t work out – even though she still thought Joe was a good man. She certainly seems to think he is good in season 4 – with all that gag worthy ‘sweetheart’ stuff.. ugh! Enough to smother the Christmas spirit! Bah Humbug!

        So while the first marriage didn’t work out, it’s not because she married a man she thought was good – and then discovered he wasn’t. Somehow – he still was.. err at least.. I think so!!


        • Ah, I think I understand what you are saying about this better now. For me, the specific reason she and Joe divorced is less important than she went into the marriage thinking one thing and found out that what she was thinking was wrong. So even though it wasn’t exactly the same (i.e. good man/not a good man) I think it still would affect how she views herself in the context of future relationships. Does that make any sense?


          • I can’t imagine that the divorce didn’t leave a large scar on Amanda’s psyche. She’s sensitive woman and would definitely deeply feel it as failure. And in the 80s divorce was more common than previously, but as a woman the stigma was still there. The term “divorcee” was not a state of being, but more of an indictment. Hah, I was single and in my 30s and my mother thought it was the end of the world. Yep, she and Dotty had a lot in common! Interesting how loaded a little word like “divorced” or “single” felt.

            Iwsod, pacing out the Burn Out posts is just fine. You must be ready to plotz! Hope you can relax over the holidays after all you hard work with the dissertation and the blog. Really, don’t you think the blog could serve as a dissertation itself!?! LOL! May be worth a try 😉


            • Hi guys!
              Jule thanks for thinking of me 🙂 I can totally relax don’t worry – If I need to take a break from writing for the blog – I will. If I need to, I won’t run it by people first 🙂 girls gotta look after herself 😉 but.. most of the time I don’t find it ‘work’ – it’s fun!!!! and if it ever feels like work- I take a break for a day or two and it’s fun again.. so don’t worry all is well here 🙂 a dissertation on smk? oh yeah!! I’d love to!! I wish… I actually will be doing another dissertation due in 2 years now.. I’m a glutton for punishment 😉 More studies ahead for me..

              So Morley, BJo, Jule and Melissa R – [forgive me if I’ve missed anyone] I see you’ve all commented on Amanda and the effect of her divorce on her. Burn Out raises some huge questions doesn’t it! Pivotal to both characters.. This is sooooo interesting!!! I will comment but I’m just sharing my overall view, and don’t want to look ahead of Burn Out [you know how it is! 😉 ]
              I am thinking differently here to you guys. I agree with you that Divorce is not an experience that leaves no scars. Amanda values very highly family and her family values.
              At the same time, generally speaking- I see Amanda as being a very strong person inside – she’s a steel magnolia! 🙂 I see Lee as being less strong than Amanda when it comes to getting your heart broken, loving people and bravely risking your heart. Lee inside is a big softie. Amanda inside is brave and strong with relationships and herself, regardless of the divorce.

              This inner strength of Amanda’s is what enables her to work for the agency, raise two kids, not become bitter with her ex, and it’s what she brings to her relationship with Lee- she shares her emotional strength with him – For me , this is where the characters compliment each other.
              For me, Amanda’s character is also persistent, and a natural optimist.
              These things combined, I see Amanda as having a very sad experience with getting divorced, but she deals with it, she moves forward in a healthy way and remains positive about relationships. To me, Amanda does not seem to be terribly damaged or traumatised by her divorce.. to start with she’s a bit lost or without purpose because her life hasn’t turned out the way she planned- but by the end of the first episode- I think she glimpses a purpose for herself outside of her family- and she’s on her way onwards and upwards. By the time we get to Burn Out, I think Amanda has settled on her purpose, and her work at the agency.
              Well, here’s my 2 cents.. ahem.. or maybe I should ask for nickel due to inflation 😉


              • Hi! I’m back. My husband and I escaped for some r&r for a couple of days. Came home to all these great comments.
                Iwsod, I agree that Amanda is stronger in her emotional makeup than Lee. He has hidden, and compartmentalized to protect himself and I don’t think Amanda has resorted to self protection. I think she can be wise with her heart and maybe a bit cautious, in that I agree with BJo that she is not ready yet to trust Lee with her heart even though she trusts him with so much else. Maybe part of that is knowing Lee so well and not giving him more than she knows he can handle. Amanda has instead met her life like she meets the cases she works on. She takes a deep breath admits she is scared and marches into the thick of things. She does acknowledge her weaknesses and that makes her strong. But If she did acknowledge that things have not worked out before, ie her marriage with Joe and that could mean that she doubts parts of herself and her decision making or her ability to judge a relationship it would just add another dimension o the thoughts that she had to ponder that night. It might even add more triumph to her decision to trust Lee.


                • Iwsod and Morley, you two rock! You made me think about Amanda’s marriage and divorce in a new light. I’ve probably let a close family member’s divorce color how I view the situation. But now that I think about it, I have a good friend who closely mirrors Amanda’s complexion and spirit who reacted in the manner you both delineate. Morley, when you said that she takes a deep breath and marches in anyway that describes Amanda’s character beautifully. I need to take a page from her book! Cheers!


                  • Hey Jule, I agree it is inspirational!!!! How interesting that you have a friend who closely mirrors Amanda.. has this friend seen smk? it would be interesting to see what they think of Amanda! Hope you are enjoying your Christmas goodies.. yes enjoy! and you can fix the damage after Christmas 😉


                  • You know Jule, you just reminded me that I have a family member who has experienced a rather similar divorce as Amanda’s. I think I wrote about it in one of the Amanda’s journey posts. They had two boys bot her husband wanted to continue the international aide work and take young sons into war zones in Africa. The wife wanted to provide a safe, steady home life for the family that they had both decided to create. It caused stress and they divorced. She was terribly shaken by the whole thing, by her understanding of the man she thought that she had married, how she had misjudged the dreams they had shared, whether she was someone that any man could commit to. She became defensive of her decision to put being a parent first over humanitarian work. She has tried to remain very positive toward her boys father because she wants her sons to have a good relationship with him, but the whole situation was fraught with self doubt and hurt and dreams gone sour for her. She became rather bitter and it has taken her some time to heal and let someone else into her life but especially the life of her boys. I think Amanda is a much more positive and soft hearted person than this person, but I can’t help comparing the experience because there is so much similar there. Going through something like that would at the least cause someone to pause and think a bit when interpersonal things got complicated.


                • sounds wonderful Morley.. glad you and your hubby could get away and relax!
                  This all sounds good to me! better than good.. it sounds great! I agree with you and BJo, Amanda hasn’t given her heart fully to Lee – not in a romantic sense.. She is brave, but she is not foolhardy with her heart – she’s pretty sage about who she trusts..

                  Indeed Amanda feels fear – In order to be brave, you need to know there is something to fear, feel the fear- and choose to do it anyway. Divorce knocked her down – but she got back up again, and bravely chose to live a full life- open to loving again..

                  I would have guessed that in any relationship there are never any guarantees – it doesn’t matter how well you know someone- to love is to risk being hurt… I think her doubts are not exaggerated though, because her experience of divorce is balanced by her strength and her optimism.. it’s just an overall view I have of her character.. and maybe when we are all done with the walk we can take a look back at all the episodes and discuss things like this.
                  I think KJ is to thank for having such a loyalty to Amanda’s character, and portraying her in a way that is generally consistent.. from articles I’ve read- I think KJ fought for Amanda’s character – protected the character from storytelling massacres which alter personality.. you know? anyway, I digress..

                  I think for anyone to trust, in Amanda’s situation is absolutely a triumph! For people to trust, who have lived a bit, and experience hurt and pain.. is a huge triumph- what a brilliant word- thanks Morley I love it!


      • Awww, thanks, Morley – I don’t think I’ve ever had had my name, amazing and words in the same sentence at one time before! 🙂 And I hear ya – when I read what others write, I sometimes think, yeah that sounds right too. So many times I can see both sides of something but for some reason, clear or unclear, I feel compelled to pick one side and stick to it.

        I wrote a little more of my thoughts on the failed marriage in a reply to iwsod above, but I’ll just add that because of my take on Amanda’s personality, I think she may have moved on from her divorce, but it is part of who she is now and hasn’t forgotten it. To me, Lee is more the type who could more easily shrug off a divorce and move on pretending it didn’t affect him anymore.

        Love what you say about trust, faith and love!


        • “Lee is more the type who could more easily shrug off a divorce and move on pretending it didn’t affect him anymore.”
          BJo, I think it the pretending that something doesn’t affect him that is Lee’s Achilles heel, you know?. As much as one pretends something doesn’t exist it is that very thing that holds you back from going forward until you do look at it and deal with it, huh? I think they were both looking at things in truth during this episode and so they can begin to go forward…


          • Morley, glad you had a chance to escape the madness with your hubby! I agree wholeheartedly with you here. Until you look at the past and deal, it’s difficult to move forward with honesty and in a truly healthy manner. Definitely, you found Lee’s weakness. Lovely to see how Amanda forces him ever so gently to deal and grow.


            • I agree with Jule, I really enjoyed your thoughts on Lee’s Achilles heel Morley!
              Maybe the most important word in the quote you’ve used from BJo there Morley is ‘pretending’ – crucial! and it’s why it is so unhealthy.. it’s not real. Indeed Morley, to be healthy and move forward we have to see the reality, admit to it and deal with it.
              It’s the Truth that sets you Free! 🙂

              I actually think Lee does this somewhat in Burn Out- (admits to or realises a truth) -but we can discuss that in more detail once post 8 is published 🙂
              LOL! want to publish it now! LOL.. but that would not be a good idea.. I must resist a little.. we have a Christmas meme post coming up next [ something light for Christmas], then BJo’s second half of this TLCE post.. then – Back to post 8 of Burn out!


      • Melissa Robertson

        Trust, faith, love…three words describe her feelings beautifully!!! They are three little words, but oh they are such complicated words. I can see why Amanda could have double been double minded!!!


  8. Is it just me or does anyone else out there think Brackin is one good lookin’ baddie? Especially compared to the little paint selling Dutch Boy? Brackin’s hair is very nice…. It has a slight wave to it. I don’t even mind his ‘stache. It’s very nicely trimmed. 😉

    LOL – Amanda definitely doesn’t look the part – not like Francine anyway, assuming that’s what Jack thinks is looking the part. But Jack isn’t very observant, like you say iwsod – he is only looking for confirmation of his thought that Lee is a burn out.

    There do some to be some plot holes in the episode – I don’t usually pay attention to them, but in an otherwise well done ep, these seem to stick out. I think the fact that Lee has been playing washed up for two weeks prior to this is also a plot hole schmot hole.

    OK – how the heck did Bobby the Creep Bouchard get on my computer screen!!! He’s sooo creepy to me!!! Yuck! Where’s the eyeball bleach! Quick, Cindy, what brand do you use? I need to pour some in my eyes to remove that image! Ack!

    Ahhh, Amanda, the ever loyal friend. You know, I know Francine compares Amanda to a dog in Spiderweb, but it is a true comparison. There is no one or nothing more loyal than a dog! And there is no one more loyal to Lee than Amanda! Love how Billy is trying to keep up the cover story here. Why is he even going there with Amanda? I think he is veeery curious about Amanda and he wonders what is really going on between these two. I think he’s the only other one besides all of us who sees that Lee and Amanda are meant to be together. He’s finally got a chance to get a peek inside! I love Billy!

    I agree, iwsod, I think Billy admires Amanda for what she is doing here with Lee’s report. And just imagine what he’d be thinking if he knew she was saying all this after THE slap! Wait, maybe Lee filled Billy in on the slap – I bet he did – what do you think? That would make Billy’s look of sadness and regret that much more meaningful. Papa bear is seeing Sister Bear grow up – professionally.

    I’m not sure that I see Billy’s behavior or words in his office as clues for Amanda that something other than what appears to be going on is going on. I think Amanda knows a bit about Billy and Lee’s relationship and I think she’d be disappointed in Billy if he just canned Lee and kicked him to the curb. I would think Amanda might expect Billy to give him a chance to work through his troubles and to help him however he could.

    I think Billy does regret a little bit having Amanda go through all this. In ROTP, Billy knew that Amanda’s grief would be short-lived. Here, I think he knows that Amanda and Lee are emotionally connected and I think he realizes that this is much worse to put Amanda through than his fake death in ROTP. I’m going along with my opinion that Lee brought Billy up to speed with the whole slapping thing and so that just makes it worse. I wonder what Billy would have said to Lee when Lee told him? I think he would have been surprised, but might not have said much of anything. Am guessing Lee would have had a sort of ‘confessional’ moment with Billy about how awful he felt and I think Billy would not have said too much for fear of pouring salt on Lee’s wounds.

    I’m going to read everyone else’s thoughts and then add my thoughts on Amanda. Sorry to get off on such a Billy tangent here – but I love Billy! He’s the “Agency Amanda” – meaning he seems to be the most ‘normal’ one of the bunch!


    • Melissa Robertson

      I like Billy too!! I have to agree that he seems to be normal, but then he’s married with kids.


    • I love Billy too BJo! He’s a kind and compassionate man and definitely sees the Lee/Amanda connection for what it is and what it becomes. He rocks! “The agency Amanda,” LOL!
      And your own your own as far as Brackin goes…… 😉


    • Oh noooo does Bobby freak you out?? LOL!!! sorry about that! I’ll warn you if there is a next time haaaa!

      Billy is lovely! agreed!

      Great questions about Billy BJo – curious to hear what others think.

      For me, I don’t see Lee telling anyone- ever. this is between Lee and Amanda.. not sure why I think that.. but I do! haaaa.. I don’t think Lee would have told Billy if there was any other way. I don’t think Lee spoke to Billy before Amanda arrived with his report.


      • Really? You don’t have one teensy weensy thought that Lee might have gone to Billy for advice or confession of a sorts after doing what he did? Lee really is distraught at what he did. I wonder if he thought Amanda might tell Billy about the slap? Actually, the latter is harder for me to believe than the former.


  9. Everyone’s pretty much covered what I would have said–and probably more coherently and/or eloquently than I could have.

    So–I’ll just comment on the question of why no watchdog… Is it completely out of the bounds of possibility that Billy and/or Lee figured that Amanda would do what she did and so they figured that they wouldn’t use a real watchdog since two apparent watchdogs might raise suspicions? *shrug*


  10. What it comes down to for me and what I think others are basically saying is that these two just know each other so well. Despite the way Lee was acting, Amanda knew that whatever the reason, this was not really Lee. Just like Lee knew something was up when Karen was trying to impersonate Amanda. Amanda probably has dozens of thoughts going through her head right now about what Lee is doing, wether it is suspicion that this is part of a cover or I could even see her fearing something horrible had happened to Lee that Amanda didn’t know about to push him over the edge. She just knows this is not the real Lee. I like what one person commented on the previous post that Amanda can see in Lee’s eyes that the real Lee is still there. I know in a lot of cases some people would say that a man hitting a woman is an absolute red flag to walk away, but in this case these two are so connected, they know when something just isn’t right about the other. I’m quite proud of Amanda here just as I was proud of Lee in Odds on a dead pigeon.


  11. A costume note: Amanda is wearing her Maria von Trapp suit again. No more shoulder pads and trendy stuff. She has her homespun power suit on. Hmmm? I checked in this post, but she wasn’t wearing the diamond pendent yet… I believe it makes a reappearance in this episode. We haven’t seen her wear it since ARS. I wonder if I can find any significance in that?


    • Hi Morley! Yes it’s strange to see her in that suit of hers again! I found the pendant necklace – we see it in the next post – but. it disappears.. I think it’s a boo boo!!! there are a few – which I will comment to Melissa R about as she’s raised some of them 🙂 and part of this is the wardrobe..


      • So why do her old clothes reappear? Why did she wear these funky, awful outfits for a few episodes and then they stuck her back in her old wardrobe? Is that supposed to be indicative of something going on with Amanda’s character? And why here in this episode? I guess I have some mental gymnastics to do. I don’t think any of those fugly clothes make an appearance again do they?


        • I have nooo idea! I haven’t watched beyond this ep. This might be one of those questions which is easier to answer with a few more episodes under our belt. Are you going to do a costume post on Amanda’s wardrobe for the second half of season 2?

          Amanda has her old jacket and skirt on, but she does still have the updated blouse and earbuttons.. and she does still need to economise no? so she’s expanded rather than replaced her wardrobe?? that is till she gets *ahem* a payrise!
          I’ll keep an eye out for the fugly clothes Morley – but hey don’t you think her hair is looking longer? in some scenes much longer and fluffier?! much much better.. even with the ear buttons! whooo hooo!


  12. Wow, really good insights here! Iwsod, I agree with your take on Amanda and the comparison to Spiderweb. Each “knows” in their heart of hearts that the other is a good person and true, but confused by the respective situations. And I always saw Billy’s reaction the same way. Love your thought here Morley and Debilyn so I won’t repeat them except to say I am on the same page. I agree Cindy that what you should do w alcoholics is exactly what you suggest, but unless you have had previous experience with addicts your gut reaction is to find another reason for their behavior and try to help in ways that make sense to you. Can you tell I’ve been there? Amanda’s reaction and mine mirrored each other, “It is just stress, let me find ways to help and relieve some of the burden. I believe in you.” It’s a struggle of deep proportions to deal with a true alcoholic and really is ongoing, waiting for the other shoe to drop. I jump every time the telephone rings. Since Lee has not displayed these heavy drinking tendencies before it would seem way out of character. I see why Amanda holds on to her belief in Lee contrary to to evidence before her eyes. Well, that was an Amandaramble of substantial proportions and all done on my phone. Yep, I am officially done the rabbit hole!


    • I am not criticizing Amanda for behaving the way she did — she’s a caring person and it’s totally in character for her (and, like you said Jule until you go through it, it seems like the right thing to do). I wanted to make sure my daughters know (and until they experience it themselves probably won’t get it) that the person has to hit bottom.
      It’s a bit frustrating now because I have a friend who’s son is schizophrenic and doesn’t see the need to take his meds and other family members are swooping in to rescue him when his father is begging everyone to let his son fall so he can get the help he needs.


      • Cindy, you are a wise woman. I wish I’d had the insights years ago that you have now. It would’ve made life, not easier, but have given us a handle on how to help deal with the situation. I am really impressed that you give your daughters information and ways to handle situations now because they do remember it down the line. Good for you! (And wonderful for them!)
        (Oh and I didn’t think you were criticizing Amanda, just using your experiences to comment, like we all do. That’s what makes this blog so interesting!)


    • >It’s a struggle of deep proportions to deal with a true alcoholic and really is ongoing, waiting for the other shoe to drop. I jump every time the telephone rings. <

      YES. And as you say, the first instinct is to try to DO SOMETHING to save them. Letting someone hit rock bottom, especially if you are a nurturing (is it too much to say co-dependent?) personality like Amanda, is very hard. Amanda is a fixer, a make-it-betterer. Even though it's a reach to equate Lee's relatively new self-destructive behavior with chronic addiction, it would be agonizing for Amanda to see someone she cares about doing such harm to himself. I could see her going to great lengths to protect him.


  13. Wow — what wonderful insights, I ‘ll have to watch the scene again, but my take on it was a little different.
    Amanda doing Lee’s reports for him was a lovely gesture but inappropriate if he really was burning out/or an alcoholic. (Hubby has more experience with ala-anon and ala-teen than me , but we both talked to the girls about how covering for someone with a drinking problem only makes things worse and delays the person getting the help they need. Poor kids, here they thought they were just watching an episode of SMK, and they get a lecture about physical violence, alcoholism, denial as a coping mechanism and how to avoid enabling behaviour.)
    At this moment, I don’t think Amanda knows for sure that Lee hasn’t burned out. I think she is grasping at straws and hoping beyond hope that something will happen to make sense of all this — why else would she do his reports and cover for him and then defend him to Billy if she was convinced this was a cover (she would have to think that if Lee were undercover, Billy would be in on it too — like Remembrance…).


  14. I imagine that Amanda would go home that night and begin to use her logical mind. She would begin to think about Lee like she did about Conrad Walter Barnhill, using those instincts that told her that Lady Bromfield didn’t love her husband. She would begin to feel strongly that despite what had happened earlier that day Lee really couldn’t be the man that he had shown today. She would begin to rely on the knowledge that she has of Lee that told her in Savior that he would never have left the Agency. And trust their mutual knowledge of each other that had told Lee who the real Amanda was when Karen had tried to impersonate her.
    I think, though that she would have to hold off of being sure of what she thinks. She is going to have to wait for something from Lee before she can place herself with Lee where that trust can be fully restored. But she still wants to help him, because that who Amanda is. She wants to help him, despite Lee telling her not to. I don’t think she really believed him, even if what he said had confused and hurt her. And if it is a cover than she would be even more determined to find a way to help as his partner. If he truly is burning out then he needs her help whether he wants it or not. But she backs of helping him as a friend and helps as a co worker/ partner. She will cover for him by doing reports and she will remind Billy of the real Lee and what kind of a man he really is, because I do think that is what she is focusing on. I think maybe that the words that she has used to describe Lee to Billy is what she is clear about, even though everything else right now is as clear as mud.


    • I’m pretty much in agreement with you, Morley. I do think that Amanda probably is still mulling over all that has happened. She’s thinking about past cases and all that Lee has done for her personally. I think she’s coming to the conclusion that it must be, it has to be, a case that would cause Lee to act this way. She’s hurt and confused, but she doesn’t waiver in the fact that this is not like the Lee she knows. I mentioned earlier that she was confronted by Scarecrow at Ned’s. She knows, I think, when he is Scarecrow and when he is Lee, so she needs to process that because she so seldom sees Scarecrow when she’s with Lee.

      Billy knows this is hard for her because he knows her. He knew it would be hard on her, but maybe not how hard. He probably doesn’t know about the slap, so he doesn’t quite know what has happened; but he sees a change in her approach. It’s like watching a child lose their innocence. The reality of the Agency has to hit sometimes, but it’s really sad when it happens to someone who genuinely looks at the bright side. I would say those people are rare in this business, and Amanda has provided much needed cheer to those she works with. She still retains her optimism, but it’s not quite the same as it was before this case.


      • I like what you say about Billy’s view of Amanda. I also agree that she doesn’t lose her optimism, but she also doesn’t get jaded or negative like Francine and others have. She maintains that open faith, even though she has seen so much. Remarkable.


      • “She still retains her optimism, but it’s not quite the same as it was before this case.” Yes, this is real turning point for her, I see her as being willing to act independently of Lee from here on out.


        • Good point, Cindy. I wonder if any of her behavior here has anything to do with trying to establish her job at the Agency apart from Lee, if indeed he is a Burn Out? Sometimes an experience like this can really cause a person to become separate from someone that they have viewed themselves an as extension of. It kind of forces that growing up like has been mentioned.


          • Hiya!

            I pretty much agree with everything! Love the way you have explained Amanda here Morley and Debilyn! You guys could write a fan fic telling of her internal dialogue over that one night! Especially enjoyed your insights Morley about Odds on a dead pigeon and To catch a mongoose- wow!! me like!!! 🙂 soooo true!!! It seems to be an ongoing theme in smk..

            Cindy, as usual – I’m loving what you tell your girls! 🙂 You know, I give Amanda a free pass here though – because it’s the spy biz- a world where sometimes reality isn’t reality – and Amanda has experienced that enough by now to figure something is going on here she doesn’t know about. Soo while I agree with you, that it is not good for a person to be covered like that, in this context I’m okay with Amanda’s actions – lol Yep, I want it both ways! 🙂

            Morley love your idea of Amanda trying to establish herself at the agency – she is definitely heading on a more assertive and independent path. At the same time, I don’t see Amanda as trying to establish herself apart from Lee- I saw her aligning herself with Lee when talking to Billy. Which is a big risk when Lee is ‘poison’ at the agency. Maybe Amanda shows some independence because she stands by Lee- and doesn’t follow the agency herd who have deserted him- and in that she asserts herself at the agency?

            Love the ideas of Amanda growing up some more in this episode – sooo true!!! I think this is demonstrated in the episode through later actions so I’ll hold off on this for now 🙂

            Oh yeah! hope you are all surviving the pre Christmas craziness! Hope all the pressies are bought, menus planned, Christmas plays and shows are organised, costumes lookin good and you can relax and enjoy this wonderful time of year!


            • True, she isn’t trying to establish herself apart from Lee, is she. She is most definitely aligning herself with him. She is acting on her own initiative here though isn’t she?
              I also wondered if she might have been hoping for some info about Lee, or Billy would see how dedicated she was and bring her in on the case (that is if it really is a case, she wouldn’t be sure yet).


              • ‘she is acting on her own initiative here though isn’t she?’ – I think she is!!! and that is a very big deal!!! Gooo Amanda!!! 🙂

                Maybe her speech about Lee was a test – IMHO Billy failed it..haaaa.. LOL – okay here I think Amanda had doubts! haaaaaa.. she wasn’t sure what was going on.. and Billy’s reaction – so warm, just seems misplaced. Like he is only reassuring her with his eyes or something!


    • Melissa Robertson

      I have to agree with how you say Amanda would approach this…so sad for her, but then it is a growing time too!!


  15. Melissa Robertson

    I always felt for Amanda in this scene…I always thought what a classy lady! Here she is after being humiliated in front of Harris and Lee slapping her that she has finished his report and made a stand for him to their boss. I know I wouldn’t have been like that!

    I truely think that deep down Amanda still thinks that Lee is a good person, who is just going through a hard time. But, I almost think that at the bar she’s beginning to think that maybe Lee’s on a case and in my mind Billy confirms her suspensions.

    This a side note and probably not even i big deal but I was thinking this was the same day because it looks like she has the same clothes on and because if I remember right in the next scene Lee says some things that allude to me thinking that it is the same day. Well, I said that to say could you imagine Amanda going home after that slap and what her night was like having to work through her feelings with her mother’s prying eyes and questions, “What’s wrong Amanda, your biting your nails! Now, I’ve know you since you were insy and you only bite your nails when you get upset!” I love my mom, but I couldn’t live with her as a grown woman. Chalk up another mark for Amanda in my book.


    • Yep, I’m with you, Dotty would have make her (and me) crazy. It must have been a night without sleep for Amanda, mind racing and still having to deal with family and try to act normal. The only privacy would be after all had retired for the night. Oy!


    • Aha! Eagle eyed Melissa R! 🙂 There are issues with the timing – You are right! I was going to cover it in the next post, but it does start in this post so I’ll share my thoughts on it now – and you’ll see it’s also mentioned in the next post.

      I basically think they’ve made a huge boo boo!
      It wasn’t until this walk through the episode that I realised Amanda is wearing a different outfit – because it looks so similar to what she was wearing the day before. Same colour and same white blouse. but the skirts are different colour – and as Morley pointed out she originally had on her new ensemble and now has on her old one again.
      This is what got me started. then I realised – wait a minute! Lee slapping Amanda and Lee in the next upcoming scene have different suits on – it was blue, and it is now brown – sooo no confusing it really..definitely different. Then I checked everyone’s wardrobe and Harris is wearing a different suit/shirt/tie combo to when we last saw him at Neds with Lee. And Billy is now wearing a different suit to the last time we saw him. So I worked out from the first scene in this post – it’s the next day and everyone is dressed differently.
      That sounds like next day to me.. So I went and published this post. then I went on to write the next post – I hadn’t looked at it yet when I published this. I wanted to get ahead so there was no delay in a few days time – and no risk of me getting caught up in Christmas stuff and neglecting it.
      Anyway, I digress! Without getting into details ahead in the next post – I agree with what you have said MelissaR- some of the things Lee says and does just don’t make any sense if it is not the same day!
      Soooo neither scenario makes sense – they’ve basically screwed it up!
      But I went with the next day because of the wardrobe- of everyone!! so I’m going to stick with that- I like the idea they had a night to deal with it, that Amanda had a night to think about her next step and choose to support Lee- rather than head into Billy’s office straight after the slap like an automaton or something haaaa.. and I like it being the next day so all the alcohol Lee has been drinking is no longer at play.
      In the end I wrote the next swoony post and decided to just put it down to errors in the script – they’ve done this before a few times. The script gets reworked, scene order gets rejigged from earlier versions of the script and then suddenly a line of dialogue no longer makes sense. I’d love to get hold of a first draft of this episode! As it is, the script just mentions that it is Day. LOL. A very full and very long day. I’m going with it being the next day! Soooo anyway, I hope that helps!
      You’ll see in the next post – I’ve probably commented on those reasons why you think it sounds wrong that it is the next day.
      Big fail for the script editor me thinks..
      haa yes good one MelissaR.. that helicopter Dotty fussing over Amanda and her nail biting would drive me nuts – give me space!!!! I think Amanda either stayed late at the agency to finish Lee’s report, or retired to her room early that night 🙂


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