6/14 Season Three, Episode 05: Welcome to America Mr Brand- Scarecrow and Mrs King (Blog order- Episode 01)

On to meet Eddie Munson.. expert forger! Amanda, Lee WTAMB.avi_000777444and James are on their way to his place.. but looks like Clayton- Dobbs has beaten them!
Munson is showing Dobbs how treated notes will look
WTAMB.avi_000767934after various time intervals from 1 day (where they look normal) to 3 weeks (where the ink has faded so badly they are ‘no longer worth the money they are printed on’. Oh hhaaaaa.. love a good pun! Smile )
Munson has come up with a way to ruin notes in circulation.. with a special chemical added to the ink, the notes will fade in sunlight. Munson hands over a small jar of a magic chemical (does Mothers for a safe environment know about this??!!! Winking smile ) and explains that the Bureau of printing and engraving (BoPE) has a tanker of ink delivered once a month. If Dobbs dumps this jar of chemical in that tanker, that’s all he needs to affect all the ink in that tanker.
WTAMB.avi_000782949Okay, sooo if Munson is explaining all this to Dobbs, that means he found this all out- so why was it Dobbs we saw taking photos in the middle of the night outside the BoPE??!!!
WTAMB.avi_000809976Dobbs is thrilled with the job Munson has done.. and hands over an envelope full of cash.
Munson’s happy to destroy the US economy and make an envelope of cash.. so I can’t say I am bothered to see WTAMB.avi_000826993Dobbs spray Munson in the face with something that knocks him unconscious!
Dobbs turns on Munson’s
WTAMB.avi_000830497gas oven, rigs a packet of sugar to leak sugar crystals and tip over an attached WTAMB.avi_000858024lamp that will create a spark and kaboom!  deal with Munson permanently once Dobbs has left. Interesting Dobbs didn’t have gloves on a second ago! Did he wipe down the envelope he touched?!
WTAMB.avi_000867534Dobbs the evil Macgyver  leaves Munson to die.
WTAMB.avi_000872539It’s so handy that baddies never use electric ovens..
Lee, Amanda and James pull up on the opposite side of the street to Munson’s (when they get out it looks like
WTAMB.avi_000887554they are looking at the wrong side of the street.. and that is a wig on Amanda.. second unit flub!

Interesting they went in two cars and Amanda had to choose which car to go in haaaa.. She choose Lee’s Winking smile but.. we get a good look at James’ car here.. sure enough.. he has actually had an Aston Martin (just like James Bond’s) shipped in from the UK for him to drive while he is on vacation and tracking down Dobbs???!!! oh boy! would this car be available in the US? Hmm..
Lee: Alright, now I’ll go in. You two stay here.
WTAMB.avi_000891558James: What alone? I’d feel absolutely dreadful if something were to happen.

WTAMB.avi_000892559[whahahaaaa!!! See Lee it’s not just Amanda who thinks this going in alone thing is a bad idea! too funny!]
Lee: Brand, I can handle myself thankyou. [still ‘Brand’ huh]
WTAMB.avi_000893059James: Oh, I am certain you can old chap…it’s just that… security…
WTAMB.avi_000900567Amanda interrupts: Alright listen, uh .. uh.. [James starts heading for the apartment, James never does what Lee tells him to Winking smile ahem.. stay in the car?!! sound WTAMB.avi_000901568like anyone else we know? Smile ]
Amanda plays peacemaker.. Lee can’t believe Brand!
Amanda: ah you both go, I’ll stay here and be the lookout!…
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…Go ahead!

WTAMB.avi_000902902[Too funny how Lee starts off telling them what to do .. and then James and Amanda end up telling Lee what to do haaaaa!!! two ‘Amanda’s’ Lee?? one is hard enough to cope with haaa]

Inside the apartment block James walks down the hallway looking for Munson’s apartment.. he smells the gas.. Lee and James stop at Munson’s door worried over the amount of gas they can smell, they hesitate…
WTAMB.avi_000919586Lee: that’s a lot of gas to be a leak.
WTAMB.avi_000927594At this, the lamp falls, breaking on the ground, and sparking the gas – Kaboom!!!! bye bye Munson..
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Bye bye Lee and James? Winking smile
Amanda ducks behin
WTAMB.avi_000939606d the vette…

A commercial break later 😉  out stumbles Lee and James.. coughing and spluttering.. Phew! they are okay!! Amanda rushes over to Lee and James and grabs them both by the arms helping them both away from the building. WTAMB.avi_000952118
Drat.. the script says Amanda rushes to Lee and gives him a big hug- guess they chose to pull back a bit huh??!!! See the guy looking out the second story window?? Third from the left?! why isn’t his floor collapsed after that huge explosion?!
Billy, Francine and the cops show up.. Francine is seen interviewing a witness.
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Lee and James meet up with Billy and together walk over to join Amanda as Lee explains: Battalion fire chief said there’s no chance this was an accident.
WTAMB.avi_000971638James: and it wasn’t suicide. Clayton-Dobbs just made it look that way.

WTAMB.avi_000977644Billy: That’s quite an imagination for an accountant Brand.
WTAMB.avi_000979646[Ouch Billy! see my comments..] Note.. Billy is calling him ‘Brand’ too.. Billy smiles here, I think he finds James mildly amusing at this point..
James: Well there’s nothing imaginary about that is there old boy eh? [whoo good response!]
WTAMB.avi_000980647Oh my.. for a man who was nearly blown up- Lee is looking mighty fine!!!! Can we get a close up??!! please??!!!!!
James continues: … and I’ll tell you how it was done, shall I?
[Nooo! Not a close up on James! On Lee!!!]
WTAMB.avi_000988154
…The stove filled the room with gas. A lamp was probably weighted with a sack of sugar…
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[oh hooray, finally a close up on scruffy Lee!]
WTAMB.avi_000992659…which is why the fireman found a burned lump of it on the floor…
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…Sugar leaked out of the sack,…
WTAMB.avi_000999666
… the lamp fell, the light bulb burns and um.. blooey!

Amanda: James says that’s Clayton-Dobbs’ trademark sir. [ah yeah, that’s not going to convince
WTAMB.avi_001002669Billy!]
Billy: Hold it. Before we go any further with this, I’m gonna check with London.
WTAMB.avi_001008675James: With all due respect, Melrose (Melrose?! okay this gets under Billy’s skin me thinks!!)
…I’ve WTAMB.avi_001012679spent seven long, hard years trying to get London to listen.
Billy: With all due respect, Brand… (ouchie!)

WTAMB.avi_001016182Billy pauses and leans in to make his point:  …you’re an accountant!
Soooo it doesn’t matter what James says, what matters is who he is?
.. oh dear
..James has rubbed Billy the wrong way accidentally here me thinks.. Bad idea to call Billy ‘Melrose’ -now Billy really is no longer amused and not open to hearing about this!
I think it’s a foregone conclusion what London will say. If they had anything to say Dobbs wouldn’t be the chairman of the ICEP!
Francine joins them.
Lee: you know Billy… Clayton- Dobbs is throwing a party at the estate where he’s staying….
WTAMB.avi_001026693WTAMB.avi_001026192
…There’ll be a whole crowd of economists, diplomats, people who’ve known him for years.
WTAMB.avi_001028695[Oh my.. Lee looks soooo good!!!haohbaobah Focus iwsod!]
At this Lee quickly glances at Amanda and then back to
WTAMB.avi_001029195Billy.. seems Lee isn’t ready to let this go yet, he’s going to show some support for Amanda – yes I think WTAMB.avi_001030196Amanda- because here he looks at Amanda.. not at James]

Lee continues: .. let’s cover it, see what we can hear.
We cut back to Billy considering this suggestion.. from an agent.. ahem.. and we can see in the foreground Amanda turns to James and smiles..
WTAMB.avi_001033199
Billy: yeah, you should be there anyway (Lol true- Clayton-Dobbs was Lee’s assignment way back when!) …Francine you be his back up.
At this we switch to the wide shot. The immediate reaction to this order from Francine is a nod, and from Lee is a quick glance at Amanda…
WTAMB.avi_001037203
… then James…
WTAMB.avi_001038204
Amanda looks at the ground-not at Lee.  [I don’t think she was expecting Lee to intervene here- do you??]
She’s disappointed by this.. This was James and Amanda’s initiative and Billy just shuts them out. Ouchie Billy!!!!
Billy to Amanda and James:
Listen, We’ll take it from here.
WTAMB.avi_001039706
Amanda: yes sir. [She’s still looking at the ground. so disappointed. but she knows better than to challenge Billy.. he wouldn’t listen to her!]
WTAMB.avi_001040206
Lee: you know… I…
WTAMB.avi_001041708
…I’d kind of like to have them along… as sort of a back WTAMB.avi_001045211up.

[James quietly smiles at this]

Amanda WTAMB.avi_001046212doesn’t hide her happiness at Lee’s suggestion here!


Lee continues:
WTAMB.avi_001047213.. I mean, it’s only a garden party.

What could happen eh?
WTAMB.avi_001048214
Amanda turns to James and smiles..
WTAMB.avi_001049215
and Billy responds: Okay. Okay. but remember you’re just window shopping.
WTAMB.avi_001051217Amanda jumps in:
Window shopping! yes!
Billy sternly: No involvement!
WTAMB.avi_001053720Amanda: no Sir! No involvement!! thank you sir! Yes sir!
WTAMB.avi_001054721Back to the wideshot, where we find Lee is watching Amanda’s happiness at her inclusion!!
WTAMB.avi_001057724
And.. this time Francine’s looking to the ground.. haaaa.. hmmm maybe she’s disappointed now? Winking smile
WTAMB.avi_001058224
Billy: okay, let’s go Francine.
Francine: got it.

Billy and Francine leave.
We will too Winking smile we’ll pick up where we left off next time.. I can’t wait to hear your take on this scene.. lots going on!!

Iwsod’s comments:
-Billy: That’s quite an imagination for an accountant.’
Ouch Billy.. Billy is jumping to all sorts of conclusions and he doesn’t even know what’s been going on. I guess it does look like James is beyond his sphere.. but I think Billy’s assumption is based on the socks not matching.. and him being an ‘accountant’ not an agent remember?? from the start Billy had James pegged.

I think this is interesting for Lee to see here how Billy is jumping to conclusions unfairly about what’s been going on. A little lesson for Lee here maybe? A glimpse of how he had behaved at the start of the episode himself?  What are you guys thinking??

-James explains how it was done..
The reactions from everyone as James puts together how Munson was blown up are interesting.. Gorgeous scruffy Lee is thoughtful.. and on hearing the explanation of the burned lump of sugar he turns to Billy – as if to say IMHO – maybe there’s something to this?? Lee is listening to James. Hooray.
Amanda is looking at James, we can see she is nodding as James talks, and thinks what he says is spot on.
Billy? he’s  not listening at all, and he smiles at the deluded accountant..

So Billy decides to check with London before going any further.. do you think Billy is now listening?
I’m not convinced.. I think he wants London to say it’s nothing.. because an accountant can’t possibly know what he’s talking about.

I think the script explains this moment much better.. and in the episode James comes off looking more of an idiot than he does in the script. In the script Billy responds to Amanda’s comment that it is Dobbs’ trademark by saying – it’s Kenneth Clayton-Dobbs we are talking about.
Lee points out that he likes to hang out with KBG agents.. and Francine says one of the neighbours saw a guy in a three piece suit stop by before the blast – when this is not a three piece suit neighbourhood.
Then Billy says before they take this any further he wants to check with London.
then James responds: With all due respect Melrose, they’re just going to trot out the same old tired excuse for not doing a thing. I’ve spent seven years trying to get London to listen.

This to me makes James’ remark sound much less presumptuous than he comes off.. I think James is right.. though the ‘Melrose’?! Bad idea! 😉

When Billy retorts ‘with all due respect, you’re an accountant’ the script directs ‘that stings – Amanda feels it, so does Lee.’ [interesting that Lee feels it!] 

-When Billy orders Francine to be Lee’s back up
– once again Lee has an insight here.. it’s like Lee is on the outside looking in and finally seeing how Amanda is excluded from things sometimes.  IMHO he doesn’t usually have this perspective because all his complicated feelings for Amanda get in the way of him seeing things clearly. But here? he is more an observer than a participant at this moment.. and can see it more objectively because James is involved.
I think this is a really lovely moment. Lee can see how disappointed she is.. he gets it. He finally gets it. Not that from now on Lee will include Amanda in everything.. but at least for once.. this time- Lee steps out and finds a way to include Amanda. – awh that is too swoony right there Lee Stetson! Lee is really making adjustments for Amanda’s sake in this episode isn’t he.. he is really being stretched to come through for Amanda. I also think Lee includes them because he knows Billy will listen to him. And, he knows this was James’ discovery in the first place, and he never would have found any of this out if it weren’t for Amanda.. I think it is a way for Lee to reward them for uncovering something here that could potentially be something. [though I think he is not 100% convinced yet]

-What do you make of Billy here? I think it shows that Billy has Amanda in a box- as supportive as he is of her, he sees her contribution as limited to that of a supportive role for Lee so far mostly. He certainly isn’t going to chase something up because Amanda suggests it.. I’m a bit meh about Billy here.. I guess it’s fair enough he doesn’t jump on it because an accountant and a housewife say so.. but he is also too  dismissive.. considering he was only just handing a certificate to Amanda from the flippin president.. meh!

Still, it plays into the idea that Amanda is underestimated and undervalued, and is trying to break out of this and improve her professional situation.. and this is going to take some time to achieve..

-‘Window Shopping’
Anyone else reminded of Bromfield Hall?? where
Lee told Amanda she was ‘window dressing?’ He meant she was selling his cover… and he was stating a fact.. but later when Amanda raised it again by the Thames, Lee became upset at the thought Amanda could have taken offense at this, because Lee didn’t mean it as an insult (well this is my interpretation of it at least). I wonder if this was deliberate – because looking at Lee now, he is now actually championing for Amanda.. such a contrast! what do you guys think?

Well I’ve rattled on long enough.. what are your thoughts on this part of the episode? I hope you are enjoying it and not finding James too annoying. I brush off all his over the top British accent and British sayings.. because smk loves to have an Englishman be very English.. ugh.. [I felt they did the same thing in Bromfield Hall!] so I try not to focus on it and just enjoy the ride.. I hope you are too!

-Amanda’s hair looks different in this scene a few times no? I think they’ve reshot a bit of this later!
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Can’t wait to hear from you- thanks so much for stopping by and reading.. do jump in and say hi!! you would be very welcome – you are not ‘window shopping’ here Smile you are free to be involved! Smile haaaa.. bye!

37 responses to “6/14 Season Three, Episode 05: Welcome to America Mr Brand- Scarecrow and Mrs King (Blog order- Episode 01)

  1. Maybe this has been discussed already, and not trying to get ahead of the game here, but if Lee is starting to get to know Leslie at this point perhaps some of his humoring of Amanda stems from some guilty or conflicted feelings. Maybe he knows deep down that Amanda is the woman for him, but he’s paying attention to another woman now and needs to acknowledge Amanda’s work and encourage her in that realm so he won’t feel bad for directing his affections toward Leslie. Maybe it’s helpful to him to think of Amanda in professional terms, so he can try to stop thinking of her in personal terms. (How’s that workin’ for ya, Lee?)

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  2. Hiya, iwsod! Not only is that a wig on Amanda, I think that is not the real Lee either! Not sure about the Brand character – don’t care as much about him! Love how you point out that Lee tries to tell them what to do but in the end they tell him what to do! LOL – love it!

    Am totally just enjoying your scruffy Lee close-ups. Yum!

    Nope, I don’t think Amanda was expecting Lee to intervene at all. I think she’s expecting things to go the way they did a la FRaul – Francine takes over. By now Billy should know that Amanda’s best skill is talking to people and making them feel comfortable enough to spill some good usable information. I think Lee is just doing this to reward these two for their work so far. Lee thinks the KCD angle is worth pursuing after this explosion. I love how Amanda’s head immediately pops up when Lee tells Billy he wants her and Brand there. I think she is very pleasantly surprised!!

    So glad Billy said “window shopping” and not “window dressing”!!! But I think you’re right about Billy. He is not listening to Brand. He is still going on the accountant and mismatched sock thing. I’m guessing Lee hasn’t filled him in on anything else yet. This also reminds me of when Billy has been dismissive of Amanda in the past, but of course I can’t think of the episode(s) – ACAct is one, but the mistake in Amanda’s file is not nearly as big of a deal as this explosion here.

    Okay – I know I’m late to the game, but I’m going to add my vote to go to the old way of doing your posts as well, iwsod. I see that as I write my comments that I’ve agreed with a lot of what you wrote in your comments at the end of the post. But I don’t feel like going back and editing what I wrote, so I’ll just leave it as is.

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  3. “The evil Macgyver” LOL! Hah, my early experience with gas stoves was rather hazardous as I had to light the pilot each time I used it and was constantly setting my long hair on fire. Slow learner…..

    I love the fact that the roles are all cattywampus here. It gives Lee additional revealing information and insights about Amanda and people in general. Also, we get to see Lee going to bat for Amanda which makes him as swoonworthy as when he is all scruffy and yummy!

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  4. Not only is it handy that bad guys only cook with gas but that they also have lamps that handily weigh no more than a bag of sugar.
    Ah smudged Lee. Making singed clothes and soot look literally smoking hot 😉 what a shame we didn’t get to see a hug 😦 That would have made the episode even more watchable.
    Bad bad Billy. In all their cases how many times has an informant been an average Joe? A worker or indeed an accountant? Take notice of their information and tips no? Why should James be any different?
    It would have been so much better if they had let James be a real reflection of an Englishman, a cockney accent (no not like Dick Van Dyke ;)) or maybe a Northerner. Most people have a regional accent, I don’t know many that talk the Queens English…..except me 😉 I is posh ya know LOL
    I don’t blame James for resorting to ” Melrose” in some respects……he’s trying hard (granted a little too hard) to be taken seriously and despite having a very good explanation for how the explosion happened Billy is resorting to put downs by referencing his day job. Find it hard to condemn him for feeling a little put out.
    Give Lee a round of applause! Finally sticking up for Amanda (and James). This is wonderful progress (and without this blog I would have probably missed). So far I can confess this episode is fairing better in my expectations than previous viewings. Thank you all for making it more watchable 🙂 Toodle pip (just incase there weren’t enough English cliche sayings being bandied about ;))

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    • P.S. Did anyone else notice Amanda is wearing her belt back to front….l must be so uncomfortable to lean back on. Slave to the costumer…..;)

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      • It was very fashionable at the time to wear wide belts reversed that way. Only works if you have a teeny waist like KJ. said with total envy At least it off sets the huge shoulder pads a bit.

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      • Yep, used to be the fashion and I don’t remember it being uncomfortable, although I was young at the time and probably prepared to put up with some discomfort to look fashionable. And shoulder pads, the bigger the better! I cringe now when I think about that particular fashion. 😉

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      • I think she has a whole set of belts that buckle in back like this — the ones with a sort of “V” in front. They would look so cute with a sheath dress today.

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    • So, if this is Clayton-Dobbs’ “trademark” killing technique, there must be situations where he has to bring a lamp and a bag of sugar with him because you can’t always count on your victim having those things handy, can you? 😉
      Ah yes, the Queen’s English. Sadly it is becoming a thing of the past as the language is dumbed down or diluted with other influences. Not only the sound of the words is suffering but people’s vocabulary is shrinking too. I have a bad habit of using words that consist of more than 2 syllables and am often confronted with a blank stare from the listener. When I explain that I’m not talking a foreign language but just using the Queen’s English, I get another blank stare, They don’t even know what the Queen’s English is!
      Out here in New Zealand, on the edge of the Empire, it’s a losing battle to retain the depth and strength of the English language. Oh well, nothing stays the same forever I suppose, and my New Zealand English must be a bit rough on the ears of the purists, I’m sure.
      Pip, pip, tally ho, Jenbo! 😀

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    • whahaha!! good one Jenbo! very funny about the lamp weighing less than a bag of sugar. Maybe KCD kept a light lamp in his car as a back up ( and a sack of sugar) 😉

      Smudged Lee is a sight to behold! swoony! indeed – smoking hot I love it! haaa

      Whooo like this:

      Bad bad Billy. In all their cases how many times has an informant been an average Joe? A worker or indeed an accountant? Take notice of their information and tips no? Why should James be any different?

      Yes Jenbo good point.. Billy’s resistance to James seems more emotion based that cognition based!

      I don’t blame James for ‘Melrose’ either! but.. it didn’t really help his cause 😉

      clap clap clap clap!!!!! – that was my round of applause for Lee.. he is blossoming before our eyes here!!! There is a lot happening in these group scenes all at once – much of which I never noticed because I was too flippin focused on how annoying James was or something ( which BTW seems to have now vanished- I now no longer find him annoying!)

      Hooray! glad to hear this is more watchable Jenbo!

      Toodle pip? what does that actually mean old chap Jenbo? haaaa

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    • Toddle pip. I haven’t heard that one. You can bet I’ll be introducing it at the workplace come Monday. 😉
      “Billy is resorting to put downs by referencing his day job.” Well said. I think Billy deserved a pointed “Melrose” in this case. I actually find James more complex now than I did as a kid when I first saw this. At the time, I thought it was over-the-top nerdiness with an accent. I thought James was simply dense. Now I see him as insightful and sensitive, underneath a regrettably clownish façade.

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      • Have you ever heard of TTFN? Stands for ta ta for now aka goodbye. Why use one word when four or an an acronym will do 😀

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  5. Maybe Billy would have been comfortable sending Amanda in alongside of Lee, but not with James as well. Lee can keep Amanda pretty safe and out of trouble, but the combination of Amanda and James may be too much for Billy to justify. I think it may be Lee who is seeing Amanda as more of a partner who can operate a bit more independently and so Lee doesn’t feel as thought there are two rookie types going in. Plus I do think he wants to honor the info that James and Amanda have brought to the case. I think he also just likes working with Amanda and he is intrigued by the increasing growth that she has just been exhibiting ( I think he is intrigued plain and simple as well).
    I haven’t got time to really look at the post, but was just taking a quick look and I thought that I would share my initial thoughts.

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    • Billy’s decision making here is pretty curious!

      For me it feels more personal toward James. He really doesn’t like him. I sense a vibe of annoyance.. starting back with the initial conversation with Lee about James, Billy sees giving James the red carpet treatment as an annoying obligation, that he had (in his opinion) cleverly fobbed off onto Amanda.. Now? He finds that James hasn’t been fobbed off at all.. annoying!!! He was suppose to turn up, be charmed and then scoot home again.. he wasn’t suppose to get Billy into hot water!
      This reminds me of Lee and his sometimes treatment of Amanda – he puts her in a situation and thinks – there! she’s out of my hair and taken care of.. she won’t get into trouble now and I can focus on my real work. But- sure enough.. Amanda always winds up getting involved in Lee’s work or getting herself mixed up in trouble – sounds just like the way Billy is seeing James.. and Billy isn’t happy!
      More on Billy coming up though..
      I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on the next part of this scene Morley.. when you are ready! 🙂

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      • I am looking forward to really digging into this episode now that my show is over. I have houseguests until tomorrow and then I am going to sit down and enjoy Mr. Brand. I can’t wait to scrutinize that scene, Iwsod.

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  6. So Brand is Amanda, Amanda is Lee, and Lee is Billy. Lee would discredit Amanda and Billy would stick up for her. Billy’s line is more like something Francine would say. I don’t recall Billy saying with all due respect Amanda, but you are just a housewife. And this is truly the start of Lee seeking Amanda out to help on assignments and it not just being Billy pairing them up. Maybe Lee has finally learned that when Amanda is on to something, she is usually right.
    Based on what we think the episode order should have been, this leads into OTL and we see how their relationship changes there. I think Lee has pulled back. I said this on the last post, but Amanda will touch Lee (like she does when she meets them leaving the building after the blast, but Lee does not touch her. When aired as the fifth episode after what has happened before, there should most definitely be a hug!

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  7. My first thoughts on the explosion were a long the lines of what Kiwismh was saying. It fell flat for me. I would have liked to see the hug, especially since I see both Lee and Amanda as having deep feelings at this point whether they are ready to deal with that reality or not. Sure they have their feelings under control but would they be so in control in a life and death situation. Amanda showed more feeling for Lee in Burn Out. but then I Iooked at the difference. Amanda is use to seeing Lee in life and death situations, and no matter how scared she gets in the back of her mind she never really expects Lee not too make it through. He always does, and in a way he is her hero. In Burn Out it was watching Lee emotionally unravel that Amanda couldn’t handle. That was different.

    One thing I really do like about this episode is seeing Lee come to Amanda’s rescue with Billy. I think this is the first time we really see Lee stand up to Billy actually wanting to include Amanda. In the past when there was a dispute it was Billy who wanted to include Amanda and Lee who didn’t. It took a lot of growth in the second half of season 2, but the tables are finally turning. I do agree however, that in the past when Billy wanted to include Amanda it was because he saw how good she was for Lee and not because he saw her a professional in her own right. I always thought one of the biggest reasons billy was always such a staunch supporter of keeping Amanda at the agency was because he had a personnel stake in scarecrow, not Amanda. Sure he wanted Amanda to learn the business better and become better at it because he knew working with Lee meant Amanda would be in danger, but in the beginning it was about Lee. Though, I do think Billy was always genuinely fond of Amanda.

    Oh, but really, Billy another comment on James just being an accountant? What’s with you people? Accountants can be very smart and a big part of math is problem solving. Amanda was just a housewife and both Billy and Lee have come to really appreciate her on different levels for different reasons. I am not saying Billy should just listen to Brand. He’s not an agent, but I think considering Lee has already gone along with Brand this far billy should have a little bit more of an open mind. As sweet as I think it is that Lee is concerned about Amanda here and wanting her to feel included and not slighting her, I think Lee should be a little more concerned with business too and explain to Billy why Lee’s interest has been peaked by what Brand is saying. I guess the script has him doing that a little bit more.

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    • hiya!! Interesting ideas about Billy here!

      I see what you are saying Kiwismh about Billy having ultimate responsibility. I’m on board with that.. though I don’t think that justifies the way he is so dismissive of James. For me, I find it was more personal than a professional caution. For me, Billy really has a bee in his bonnet this whole episode.. and this continues in a later scene with Billy also.. so I’m sure this will come up again.

      All very true kiwismh, Billy has to justify his decisions and be wise.. oh and scruffy Lee is lookin good huh!!! I think they teach that in spy school – how to style your hair so it survives a bomb blast still lookin good for the news cameras or something! 😉

      Hi Misty! I agree with your thoughts on Billy here!
      Misty wrote:

      Oh, but really, Billy another comment on James just being an accountant? What’s with you people? Accountants can be very smart and a big part of math is problem solving. Amanda was just a housewife and both Billy and Lee have come to really appreciate her on different levels for different reasons. I am not saying Billy should just listen to Brand. He’s not an agent, but I think considering Lee has already gone along with Brand this far billy should have a little bit more of an open mind.

      Hear Hear!! I’m totally on board with this, well put!!!

      Haa yeah! true Kiwismh. they do interview people behind that safety tape there haaa.. did you see the neighbour who looks out the window directly above the blast? I mentioned it in my post – you can see him moving in the window directly above the bomb blast as Lee and James (with Amanda) rush out of the building.

      Lee is in an interesting place in this episode! As much as this episode is big on Amanda growth – it is full of new insights for Lee too!! I agree his affection and closeness with Amanda is on display (just not physically). His connection with her is being tested here.. and while he fights it a little – he does ultimately come through for her – Lee can’t just not care about what Amanda says anymore.. hmm..
      As for Lee pulling back physically in this episode? Any connection to the events of Over the Limit I will think about when we are chatting about Over the Limit.. though for now, I would say that Lee pulling back in this episode physically, could be due to this inner struggle Lee is experiencing in this episode, with Amanda and her professionalism (I don’t think there’s anything to say in this episode it is a struggle with his personal feelings for her, well.. not anymore than usual!).

      This episode sees Lee putting himself out there for Amanda the professional – in a way he’s never been required to before.. Previously, Lee has put himself out there for Amanda the friend, or Amanda the mother.. or Amanda the civilian.. but in this episode, Lee finds that he is now professionally being challenged to include Amanda the professional – am I making sense here? This is confusing for Lee, and a bit confronting.. but I think we see time and again that Lee meets this challenge and comes through for Amanda in the end 🙂

      So true Kiwismh, Amanda is thrilled to have this acknowledgement from Lee – by being included in the garden party! the next part of this scene has a wonderful exchange too that I can’t wait to discuss with you guys. (lips zipped!)

      I agree Misty and Kiwismh, the reaction to the bomb blast fell flat [how ironic! 😉 ]- Just like Amanda’s hair 😉
      I can only guess that the presence of James put a stop to any shows of affection? hmm.. oh well!

      Misty I also really liked this comment of yours:

      I do agree however, that in the past when Billy wanted to include Amanda it was because he saw how good she was for Lee and not because he saw her a professional in her own right. I always thought one of the biggest reasons billy was always such a staunch supporter of keeping Amanda at the agency was because he had a personnel stake in scarecrow, not Amanda. Sure he wanted Amanda to learn the business better and become better at it because he knew working with Lee meant Amanda would be in danger, but in the beginning it was about Lee. Though, I do think Billy was always genuinely fond of Amanda.

      I agree Misty! Both Lee and Billy need to learn to see Amanda as more of an independent professional. Before this episode, they valued her but they placed limits on what she could do in their eyes.. when it came to small stuff, or the suburbs, or children..or laundry, Amanda was the woman! but Amanda’s gains in the eyes of Lee and Billy were limited in applicability! Billy saw this limited value from the start. Lee needed the first two seasons to see it and accept it.
      Now, at the start of season 3?? they are both being challenged to broaden their view of Amanda professionally IMHO! Francine? whoooo there is an utterly brilliant moment coming up that I found really gave us some insights into where she is at in viewing Amanda (okay lips zipped again! but won’t be long till we get there)
      Loved your comment I quoted Misty because it highlights how Lee and Billy have both been viewing Amanda as an extension of Lee and his work – there is that idea that was raised earlier.. that Amanda is beginning to be viewed as a separate work identity to Lee – hooray! bring it on!!! for now.. Billy is fighting this all the way.. and Lee is adjusting, and championing for Amanda!

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    • Misty, I like what you say about Billy’s inclusion of Amanda being more about Lee than about Amanda in the beginning. I completely agree. I think Billy thought she had the basic qualities to do the jobs he asked her to do, but those qualities weren’t special in any way.

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      • I’m liking all this discussion on Billy’s motivations here! I agree that it’s likely he was mostly wanting to exclude Brand, not necessarily Amanda, from the fieldwork. I also think he has maybe more faith than he should in the London office – I can almost hear a running mental commentary along the lines of, “Surely if there were any truth to this, MI-6 would have dealt with it ages ago!” Being a former field agent and now section chief himself, he probably has greater trust in the judgement of others like himself than he does in the solitary voice of someone he doesn’t know who also, based on his appearance and demeanour, is extremely difficult to take seriously as it is.

        Sure, I think Billy’s people skills are usually better than this – look how he usually manages Lee – but I think Brand is just rubbing him the wrong way, and he just let his irritiation get the better of him. But he also has to consider the ramifications of opening an investigation that an ally agency has already dismissed, especially an investigation of a member of the peerage – there might be diplomatic ramifications Billy is used to dealing with that the others might not think to consider.

        Just my 2 cents!

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  8. Love how they interview the witnesses right under the building that was just rocked by a large explosion. Isn’t anyone concerned about the structural integrity of the building now? Even falling masonry?
    Shame they didn’t have Amanda hugging Lee when he and James came out of the building. It kind’ve fits where I see Amanda at right now – not in love but she does know she has deep feelings for this guy, and he was just about blown away. It would also be a good companion piece to a certain scene in the next episode, of which we shall speak no more until we get there.
    Even though I’m enjoying this episode more as the season opener, the aftermath of the explosion in this episode is still kind’ve flat in regard to both Lee and Amanda’s reactions. I would’ve expected them both to show something more after this close call.
    Having said that, I think Lee is definitely feeling the warm fuzzies for Amanda in this episode. After this look of admiration in the last post, we see him again taking the time to really focus on her, and it seems he likes what he’s seeing. Hmmm, as some of the comments in the last post eluded to, maybe his growing feelings for a certain somebody temporarily drive him into someone else’s arms. He still doesn’t think he can be the man that Amanda wants and needs.
    Amanda too is impressed by Lee’s actions in this episode. She can see that he is appreciating her and going out of his way to make sure her contribution is recognised and valued. With the progress they have both made since Burn Out, I’m thinking it must be getting harder for Amanda to keep a lid on her growing personal feelings for Lee. She is beginning to see that Lee can be the man that she wants and needs.

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    • Oh God, where was my brain when I was I writing this – eluded? No kiwismh – get it right – alluded. Jeez, and me going on about the Queen’s English and all. Aw-right then Guv’na, I fink we’ve go’it right now, eh?

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      • LOL don’t worry kiwismh.. I didn’t even notice! I make mistakes all the time.. we’re here to have fun together – but never at your expense! you know what I keep getting mixed up (among many things) exasperated and exacerbated! Ironically, it’s both exasperating and exacerbating!!! 😉

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      • fink! Love it! I throw that out every once in a while when talking to my kids and they have no idea what I mean 😆

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  9. Billy’s attitude – I’m thinking that Billy is ultimately responsible for justifying everything that happens in his section, so I’m not surprised he’s sceptical about the whole thing. He’s also responsible for the people on his section, so again not surprising he wants to keep Amanda and James away from the action. Although he’s not seemed so worried in the past about Amanda getting into the thick of it. 😉 After-all James is an accountant, not an operative for MI6. Billy would lose a great deal of credibility if he didn’t challenge what James is saying.
    Even in my job I have to be able to fully justify and explain everything I do if challenged, so I can easily see Billy always being mindful of how he’s going to justify and explain his decisions and the actions of his people (and James) to the powers that be if it all turns to custard.

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    • Oh, and while we’re on the subject of hair – scruffy Lee’s hair looks immaculate too. Almost blown to smithereens and not a hair outta place. What a man! 😀

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    • Agree, kiwismh. As much as I don’t like Billy’s reaction here, it is professional, and also a bit posturing as though he is working hard to remind all of his authority. He is ultimately responsible. Amanda is not an agent. James is not an agent …. or so he claims … who knows if James is really the accountant he claims to be. Billy needs to play things with caution here, and he feels a little edgy about it. All he knows at this point is that he does not trust James because James is not merely the accountant he came across the pond purported to be. And as we’ll see Billy affectionately acknowledge in a not too distant episode, Amanda “gets involved” with crackpots … LOL, never thought of this episode as foreshadowing that statement but when put in this episode order, it adds up.

      I’m thinking the lack of a hug for Lee after the explosion is so that Amanda did not seem insensitive to James, who of course was also a victim of the explosion. I can think of a similar future scene where Lee does the same. (Trying so hard not to allude to future eps but obviously they keep jumping to mind!)

      I do wish they had left the script between Billy and James as scripted. I like it much better. I wonder why they changed it?

      I had to laugh at the writers slipping in James using the word “dreadful”. I would have been disappointed if he hadn’t used it somewhere along the line. Americans don’t really use that word, so to us (well, at least to me), it is quintessentially English! I picture Americans sharing a conspiritorially affectionate smile when in the company of an English friend who uses the word “dreadful” 🙂

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      • Raffie and kiwismh, I agree with you both in a way. I don’t think he’s putting down accountants (not enough anger in the phrase for me to think that), he’s just frustrated. I think he was upset that he thought this was a simple “be-friendly-with-the-British-Agent” and now he’s knee-deep in something that could jeopardize what the Agency is currently working on. This frustration leads him to be more rough than usual. He has to be careful with his response to the whole idea, thus he has to run it through proper channels (check with London) before going further.

        I think Francine is amused by the whole thing. Here’s this accountant (she WOULD think that way) investigating things with Amanda (whom she has grudgingly begun to accept), and it really knocks Billy for a loop. On top of that, Lee is siding with both of them because he sees some potential in the case. Yes, part of it is reaching out to support Amanda, but another part is intrigue in the case. He can’t discount what he’s come to understand on his own.

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    • I agree with you, kiwismh, about Billy’s attitude here. He also has to think that this could become an international incident since other countries are involved as well as diplomats, etc.

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  10. Maybe the shockwave from the explosion knocked Amanda’s hair flat. 😉

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    • LOL Cindy. I was thinking her stylist must’ve been hiding behind the car with her. 😀 Oooh, and click on Iwsod’s link back to Bromfeld Hall by the Thames – Amanda’s hair looks gorgeous. Why didn’t they just keep it like that? Why oh why did we have to endure the hair don’t of late S2. I invest a great deal of mental energy into imaging her hair long and beautiful when I’m watching those episodes. 😉

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      • ROFL Cindy! Love your suggestion – the shockwave did the flat hair! 😉 I can’t find it in me to complain about the flat hair.. I am so happy to see the hair don’t gone that I don’t mind it!

        too funny kiwismh!! I have an image in my mind now of the hairdresser hiding behind the car! yeah.. Amanda’s hair was gorgeous in AABH.. why did they change it?? I think we can come up with a possible explanation for that.. I think we’ve already suggested somewhere ( ALSALS maybe and in morley’s dissociation post) that Amanda chopped it to update her look when she decided to up her professionalism and commitment to her work. (in conjunction with the funky and slightly disconcerting new wardrobe) – she was experimenting with her professional identity!

        Now in WTAMB we see her looks is changing yet again..
        hmm.. well Morley?? maybe I will hold off saying what I think about this new look if you will do another post on this??

        I will say, that I’ve seen another explanation for the hair- don’t in Over the Limit – which I’ve seen in hindsight… but of course, I won’t go into that now.. I’ll just say – there’s another possible explanation for the hair don’t coming up from me. 🙂 All makes me feel better about it 😉 that and all the memes I was able to make at the expense of her ear buttons!

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        • Oh, now you have my interest peeked, Iwsod. Another explanation for the hair don’t in OTL? I am looking forward to that. I do have a part 2 for the hair don’t post, I jus need some time to complete it… not sure when that will be. But I will say it is fun to watch Amanda find her new professional yet true to Amanda self and I do think it is reflected in her sense of style. I do like the belts she wears and I like the shirt she wears in this episode. I know the plaid isn’t the best pattern, but it is soft and feminine, especially with the criss cross front. However I can’t stand the pink PJ look in the next scene.

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