Back to IFF, Lee is standing in front of a snazzy street map of Washington DC, using a pointer to indicate where he is talking about.
Lee: Nabuti’s motorcade will come down Constitution Avenue and turn right here. This position is Alpha. Beta and Gamma, here and here…
…Omega is in position right here at the mansion.
The shot widens to show they are in a conference room, with Billy and four other nameless agents back from goofy golf to join in by looking interested..
Billy: I want all of you to rehearse the timing of these movements until they become second nature. We have to be prepared for every emergency.
Hey this is interesting.. it is almost exactly what the baddie Tucker was saying – timing is everything.. well almost! The baddies are practicing.. the goodies are practicing.. just who will win?!
Billy nods to Francine- you’re up!
Francine [placing plus signs on the map]: these are the possible ambush sections. They are also the best places to mount a coordinated attack.
[What no pointer for Francine?! these plus signs are too funny!]
Lee points: and of course, right here, at the mansion.
Billy: how are the security systems coming along?
Lee: It’s right on schedule. Jordan’s doing a bang up job.
Seems by all accounts Jordan is a good guy who does a great job.
A nameless agent enters and hands Billy some information.
Billy: This is a dispatch from the Ubondwa government, confirming the fact that the communist rebels have hired a mercenary hit squad. Three, maybe four members. [LOL love how they know the number of members!]
Lee: Right under our nose, waiting for the right moment to move.
Billy: well, that’s a moment we won’t give them. Call out all available manpower. [available staff Billy!]
Billy exits, everyone collects their papers and begins to exit. Outside we see Amanda is waiting for them to come out. She’s still wearing that outfit so this is the same day as Byron offered her the job.. looks like she’s come straight back to the agency.
Billy smiles at seeing Amanda waiting..
Billy: Good timing Amanda! (then to everyone) All right people, let’s get cracking!
Francine exits the conference room, entering the bullpen saying to Amanda: Okay, Oh I hope you don’t have any PTA or Goofy Golf tonight, it could be a late one! [whoo hoo! goofy golf mention! ] Lee follows behind Francine.
Lee and Amanda silently smile hello to each other.
Billy, Francine and Lee are gathered around Amanda.
Lee: Amanda, could you handle these files? I’ll need printouts on-
[LOL I love how Everyone comes out with something for Amanda to do, and fully expecting her to do it. Naturally! they are so use to having her there..]
Amanda hangs on to the furniture here, her fist in a ball. I think she is not looking forward to this..
Amanda cuts off Lee here…
Amanda: No, I’m sorry I can’t. [Amanda nervously clears her throat]
[Whoa! they are not use to this!!! Everyone looks up at her.]
Lee is confused: What do you mean you can’t?…
…Are you alright?
[I love that Lee’s immediate reaction is concern for her. Not cranky or indignant. Amanda? say no?]
Amanda: Oh yeah I’m fine…
(working for pittance? she wasn’t fine. IMHO! Though I think Amanda appreciates Lee’s caring enquiry here )
… but I just stopped by to say goodbye…
…Well, not really goodbye, because I’ll still be around.
Lee frowning: Wha- What are you talking about?
Amanda:Well, Byron Jordan offered me a job as his executive assistant at double my salary.
Francine: hoooo nice touch.
Francine is impressed! I think Amanda’s expression here is like: ‘it was a great offer, I’d be dumb not to take it.’. I agree with her – I think it would have been madness for her to turn this down! To keep working with Lee? [I see Amanda at this stage as knowing Lee is wonderful- but he is not a future romantic prospect..] Good on her for not putting her life on hold for what at this stage would only be a bit of a dream!
Call me crazy but here- Francine almost seems to say: ‘good one Amanda!’ I think she is impressed.. her smiles don’t seem to me to be a ‘yippee Amanda’s leaving’ you know? What do you think? Of course, this is a great opportunity, but it is sad for Amanda to leave her ‘good friends’.
Lee is stunned silent.
[BB knocks this reaction of Lee’s out of the park here!!]
Billy responds: Jordan’s a good man.
We continue to see Lee and Billy react as Amanda continues: and I think I’m gonna take it.
Lee smiles a tiny bit.. to cover his shock here.. plus he can’t form any words he is so shaken.. But he must do something- after all, they have an audience!
This comment of Amanda’s that she ‘thinks’ she is going to take it? reminds me of Brunettes are in!
Where Amanda said to Lee in their fight: My resignation, I think I should probably give it to Mr Melrose.
Lee says: Well you do what you think is best for you, that’s all.
He doesn’t say- don’t resign..
So Amanda says: well, I will then I guess.. I’ll turn in my resignation.
Here again – we are talking of her resignation.. Whereas in Brunettes they were both mad, here they are not- but I do think Amanda is again putting it out there with this statement of hers: can anyone give me a reason not to take the job?? She’s thinking not.. but hey.. It’s like a last little check from Amanda before she makes that leap. Because if she had a choice, she’d prefer to stay at the agency and get a raise. Problem is.. Lee is still stunned and can’t think much less talk.. He isn’t in the position to offer her a raise.. and Billy isn’t offering.. and there is the dramas of the Nabuti threat which has just been confirmed to be real in the last scene.
Amanda looks at him and shrugs.
Amanda to Lee: I need the money.
IMHO Amanda communicates here- that she wishes she didn’t have to go. But she needs to. The agency isn’t able to offer her the money she needs to look after her family and her future. This is not about Lee.. It’s about Amanda and her family’s financial security.
Amanda gives Lee a smile.. IMHO asking him to understand why she needs to do this.
Lee doesn’t seem able to look Amanda in the eye- there’s so much chaos going on beneath that still exterior.. I can almost hear his racing thoughts from here! 😉
He nods and looks down at his paperwork.
Cue the close up on Amanda: (looking at Lee): I guess this means…
(then looking at the others speaking more loudly and looking at Billy) …I’ll be resigning from the agency.
[the agency can’t offer what Byron is. it’s settled..not one Lee can fix. (yet! )]
Finally.. a Lee close up!
Lee, nods, looking sad- so heartbreaking!!! and so powerful after everything they went through last week in Burn Out!!
wryly smiling: Oh.
[I can only guess this big: POW!!!! Lee feels here is scary- very scary!!! Amanda is so important to him now – being faced with losing her here reveals to Lee just how important she is to him. Plus, being surprised he was unable to prepare himself for it in any way and so he was hit with the full force of his attachment to Amanda.. Ouch!!! poor Lee!! ]
I think Lee’s thinking – ohhh crap.. I’ve just lost the best partner I’ll ever have! But I can’t argue.. this double salary is great for her future!
Lee looks back down at his paperwork. [what’s with the wry smile here? Lee maybe thinking: I should have known. Everyone leaves eventually?? how did I let her get so close to me?? ] thoughts anyone??
The scene closes with a final close up on Amanda, who raises her eyebrows, bites her lip and sighs very audibly. Amanda’s sad too.. Amanda seems to tell herself: there, I gave it one last go.. it wasn’t meant to be.. it’s done. I’m resigning.
A sad moment here huh! Well I am really looking forward to hearing your take on it guys! I suspect I may differ with some on this because I don’t see this being directly about romance (though in a way it always is as it’s all connected 😉 ). It’s about the practicalities of life. Amanda is looking after her family here. It’s not about wanting to leave the agency or anything to do with Lee IMHO.. and I see her as pleading with her eyes for Lee to understand this.
I think early Lee would have gotten angry here as a reflex- because this hurt him and that seemed to be his immediate response. But the lack of anger here to me shows greater maturity in Lee.. You know, I don’t think we’ve seen Lee be angry towards Amanda since Car Wars – where in hindsight it seems Lee finally managed to learn to control his anger when dealing with Amanda Hooray! I think Lee sees this resignation is not about him and he will need to come to terms with this decision because it is best for Amanda and her family. By not demanding Amanda stay or accusing her of anything- IMHO Lee puts Amanda and her family ahead of what he wants. He doesn’t want her to go. what do you think?
Such a bittersweet moment this.. This episode and it’s plot raises some really interesting ideas at this point huh.. about life, priorities, connection, acceptance and wanting what’s best for another.. and Lee and Amanda parting ways for pragmatic reasons outside of either’s control (at this stage – okay try not to jump ahead: I’m trying too! ) is a great way to raise these issues without pushing the relationship too far.. because IMHO neither are ready for that.
BTW – I love Amanda isn’t wearing the ear buttons! And has her diamond necklace back!
Wow.. it really shook up Lee here didn’t it.. Amanda leaving.. Remember what Lee was like in Double Agent? when there was a possibility they might be separated?? Interesting to compare his reaction then and now – back then.. he was able to keep up a front of yeah so whatever.. here? He’s not able to keep up this facade at all it hits him so hard- maybe it is also that it is so sudden here.. whereas in Double Agent he had a chance to mentally close himself off from what it all means before he had to deal with Amanda (hmm fan fic?!).
I think this episode has quite a close relationship with Brunettes are In – with the prospect of their working relationship coming to a close.. it’s interesting that both times the personal and the professional intermingled.. it always seems to with Lee and Amanda doesn’t it?!
Can’t wait to hear from you all!!! Share your thoughts.. your questions.. your theories.. your gripes.. whatever you like.. but don’t feel you need to have all the answers to share your thinking: None of us have all the answers right?! least of all me!! Also, feel free to just share what you think: but you don’t have to explain yourself if you don’t want to 🙂
byee guys!!! happy discussing!!