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

This is a big post! Time to finish up with Mr Brand!

Back to the Cumberland.. err estate where Dobbs is staying! James and Amanda are hiding in the shrubbery! watching the house with binoculars, James sees Krulnikov is there in the garden.
James: Krulnikov! It’s a bit bloody brazen of them isn’t it?!
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[agreed! gee if they’d had an agent watching Dobbs they’d have confirmed a KGB agent was stopping by]
Amanda: what are you gonna do?
WTAMB.avi_002404571James says he’s going to move closer and try to WTAMB.avi_002406072record some of their conversation with his czech made recorder..
Amanda: James, you can’t go up there alone.
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WTAMB.avi_002410076James: Amanda,  I stumbled on this seven long years ago. I followed Clayton-Dobbs’ career through the years and around the globe. I’ve given up a good deal of my life to pin him down. I can’t let him slip through my fingers…
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…Not now. I need this.
(James hands Amanda his car keys) …you better leave.
Amanda: No!! Look, I’m not gonna drive that crazy car!..
[Very fleetingly here we see James smiles at this comment of Amanda’s! ]
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WTAMB.avi_002436102and besides that, you can’t go up there alone.
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…James you are an accountant. Not a spy. Why don’t you act like one.

WTAMB.avi_002441107James: probably for the very same reason that you’re not at home folding nappies, Mrs King….
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[Up till now James has called her Amanda.. I think ‘Mrs King’ here is a deliberate choice. ]
WTAMB.avi_002446613James pauses a moment before continuing, letting Amanda think about it.WTAMB.avi_002447814

WTAMB.avi_002448748James continues: … I’ve always wanted more.
WTAMB.avi_002451117Amanda doesn’t argue with James, he’s right and she knows it- that’s exactly why she does what she does Smile
Amanda simply responds to James:
Good luck… you’re gonna need it!
WTAMB.avi_002452118At this, James gives Amanda a thumbs up [whooo I don’t think James Bond would do that] and leaves. Amanda puts on the binoculars to watch James’ progress – it’s clear too that Amanda isn’t leaving- she’ll be his back up! Too funny..we see James from Amanda’s point of view, through the binoculars – only he’s heading towards her WTAMB.avi_002462629not away lol!!! and looky!!! there is a hose sticking up front and centre..
Amanda whispers to herself:
watch out for the hose!!!
ah yes it has trouble written all over it  Winking smile
James is going to get all clumsy again? you bet! he trips
WTAMB.avi_002468168on the blasted thing.. nothing else in the garden and he walks into the hose. Splat!!
WTAMB.avi_002469502Aie! Well, he is nabbed by Dobbs and Krulnikov…
Dobbs: if it isn’t the little accountant. MI-6. You’re like a bad meal old boy, always popping back up. [ewww!!]
Krulnikov finds the tape recorder in James’ pocket and takes it off him.
WTAMB.avi_002483650WTAMB.avi_002487654Dobbs: Mr Brand, what are we going to do with you?.. I’ve tried to be decent about this I really have.
ROFL!! Love the baddie looks here! Haaa! Is there a ‘decent’ way to ruin American currency?? create economic chaos? tee hee..
WTAMB.avi_002488655James has shades of Amanda here.. he isn’t letting on that he’s afraid.. James: It’s over you stuffy twit! [whoo you tell him James!] I saw you doctor the ink and I’ve alerted the authorities.
WTAMB.avi_002497664Dobbs: you alerted the authorities? The schizophrenic Mr Brand? I’m sure all of Washington is mobilising under some sort of red alert even as we speak.

WTAMB.avi_002504170Ah!! but he doesn’t know about Amanda and Lee! Smile

Krulnikov drops the recorder and smashes it into the suddenly fake grass. No really – it’s fake! whahaha!!! Look!
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WTAMB.avi_002513179James is defiant: Czechoslovakian made! Finest technology available and you’ve smashed it! [LOL that’s not all they’ve done Winking smile ]
James is put in Dobb’s limo.. Amanda grabs James’ car keys.. and whooooo the James Bond-like music begins to kick in again! very cool!
Amanda runs to James’ car.. and follows the limo..
Whooo a stick shift? Amanda manages to drive it.. I guess she’s had lessons!! Plus, she has to change gears with the left hand- that’s even trickier! [I remember the first time I had to change gears with my right hand it was truly bizarre- in Australia we normally change gears with the left]
WTAMB.avi_002562228 Is this Lee’s music theme playing as Amanda as the bond theme transitions into the smk theme?? Is this usually the music when Lee is being the hero?? Anyone? I’m not sure.. what do you think? if it is, it’s interesting that this time Amanda has this music!
Amanda finally makes her move zooming up the inside and past the limo.
James leans out the window giving her an enthusiastic thumbs up crying out:
Good Show Amanda!!!!
WTAMB.avi_002595662Oh my goodness.. that cracks me up every time.. the guy is being held hostage and he looks like he’s having the time of his life! Smile 

Now Amanda’s in front of the limo she attempts to use James’ gadgets.. only.. he lied about them! haaaa!!
how is James’ car licenced in the USA? he sourced an Aston Martin for his time in the US? oh whatever..
WTAMB.avi_002603269She tries to turn on the oil slick but instead turns on the windscreen wipers.. haa!!
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and she turns on the water sprayer cleaning the windscreen haaaa – Amanda’s face here is too funny! WTAMB.avi_002606373
Haaa Amanda tries them all.. with no luck haaa!!! [LOL she’s such an optimist!]  I went back to compare what James told Amanda in the first place – he mentioned a smoke bomb but pointed to a completely different switch.  [phew, good thing she didn’t press the ejection seat button by mistake 😉 tee hee!] Amanda sees the only silver corvette in Washington approaching her in the opposite direction. Hooray! So Amanda breaks suddenly and the limo swerves across Lee’s path to avoid her.
whoo cool skid marks when the vette does a 180!! That is sooooo not BB driving!
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Hey is that the u-turn we see in the credits?
season 3 credits:
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[from the looks of the skid marks they did a second go at this turn for the credits] I know you guys love the vette but I think the credits look dumb because it’s WTAMB.avi_000040607really obvious it’s not Lee doing the u-turn.. as a member of the Protector of Lee’s dignity club (the POLD!) I wish it looked more believable! Sorry BB!
Hey how did Lee know where they were?  I guess they were driving from the estate, and Lee was on his way there?

Everyone (except James) gets out and the fights begin!
Hey James’ window was down- so why can’t he get out? did they wind up his window first and then flee?
Love how Amanda gets out of James’ car with his briefcase believing it has tear gas- so she opens it on the KGB lady only to find he was lying about that too!
WTAMB.avi_002651317Oh James!!! and.. Oh Amanda!! what’s that saying? fool me once? shame on you.. fool me twice?????!!!!!…. anyways, Amanda ( errr I mean Amanda’s stunt WTAMB.avi_002651584woman!!) just ends up confusing Krulnikov (after all she’s a black belt in that) sticking her foot out to trip her as she runs past WTAMB.avi_002653586WTAMB.avi_002655989and then pelting the trained KGB agent with the briefcase instead..
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Pretty unbelieveable this one!! Ohhhh dear!! I would have loved to have seen Amanda do a cobra death grip! You know, Stanley needs to be told that in a fight to the death with a KGB agent, they might not stop for time out, but they will stop if you just errr.. confuse them with a brief case ! 😉

James is stuck in the limo.. Meanwhile.. Lee in a rather random sweater  is fighting the chaos economist..WTAMB.avi_002671271
Guess what.. Lee wins and not a Kung Fu move in sight.. poor Lee he’s had a hard day.. Oh wait..what am I saying??!!!  Lee in jeans! Lee in jeans!! Lee in jeans.. forget the sweater.. me like me like..

Man my season 3 dvds don’t seem to let me take clear pics of action sequences as much as the season 1 and 2 discs did. I wonder if they are coded slightly differently.[sorry guys I’ll just have to do the best I can!]

James is stuck in the limo.. but now.. literally stuck! His head is stuck in the moon roof! [Do any other countries call them a moon roof? we use to call them a sun roof but because of the whole thing about the sun causing skin cancer they changed it’s name! ]
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Amanda watches Lee win his fight..
He rushes over to Amanda, Lee: Are you alright?
whoo she has to touch the guy. Can’t blame ya!
Amanda responds:
Yes.  [Jeans! Lee in Jeans!!!]
Lee: Where’s James?
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[Whooo he’s calling him ‘James’ again!]
Amanda: In there (pointing to the limo)
Lee and Amanda head for the limo we can hear James mumble: I’m here old chap!
Lee: Just hold on.
 Hold on James relax.
James: thank you. Lovely to see you but it’s rather awkward.
Lee opens the moon roof wider for James. LOL both Lee and Amanda grab the door handle to open the door for James
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Amanda: ahhh!!! Oh James! No smoke screen!
WTAMB.avi_002694794(lol James gets his cigarette case out) .. no tear gas!
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James:
well after all Amanda, I did say I had a confession…. or two! ha!

James opens his cigarette case, and they all going flying.. the scene ends haaaa!
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Tag time! At IFF Lee, Amanda and James walk down the hallway.
[I’m guessing Billy is lying low! Winking smile ]
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The report to MI6 has been sent, and it looks like a promotion for James (what, no certificate of merit from the president for saving the economy?!)
Amanda cheers: ‘Ohhh that’s wonderful’ when hearing about this promotion, genuinely pleased for James.
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Lee has a big smile here and seems pleased for James too. wow!!! He’s progressed hasn’t he!
The three of them run into Dr Pain walking (yes,walking- I am sooo relieved to see he can still walk!) down the hall
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WTAMB.avi_002719753– his neck seems err not right! He scurries away terrified.. (having given Lee lifelong certification in hand to hand combat no doubt) .. and possibly on his way to Dr Pfaff’s office now he’s too scared to fight anyone anymore Winking smile
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Amanda and James are surprised at Dr Pain’s reaction.
WTAMB.avi_002722822WTAMB.avi_002724290rofl- the agency hallway has plants in it now???!!!!
Lee explains in a whisper:
the cobra death grip, it laid Dr Pain flat out.
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James: I’m rather glad, you see…
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…I made the whole thing up!!!
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LOL Amanda doesn’t know what to think! She smiles nervously..
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Lee looks at Amanda and then back to James.
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Then Lee and James break into shared laughter about it!
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They share a handshake and Lee wishes him WTAMB.avi_002741408good luck. He gives James a couple of pats on the back and he leaves Amanda and James to say their farewells..
James oozes appreciation and affection for Amanda here, it’s quite lovely.
James to Amanda:
And you. How can I possibly thank you.
WTAMB.avi_002748415Amanda: Oh well, that’s easy. Just go spend a week with your father in Claxton commons and tell him about your new promotion.
WTAMB.avi_002757924James: ah you know, it’s funny. Promotion or not I was thinking of doing just that. You see I’ve discovered something here in America.
WTAMB.avi_002771438Amanda: what’s that?
James: I’ve discovered that the name Pott has a rather nice ring to it. Don’t you think?

Amanda: yes I do Mr Pott.
WTAMB.avi_002772939WTAMB.avi_002775942James chuckles at this, and they give each other a peck on the cheek.
Amanda: Goodbye.
We see James mouth ‘bye’ but don’t hear it.. hmm.. I think the audio was cut already as the camera freezes on Amanda and the episode ends there with Amanda smiling warmly at James.
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The end!

iwsod’s random comments!

-Amanda: James, you can’t go up there alone.
This conversation is fascinating!!! James is too invested to just sit back and not act. Even if he is putting himself at great risk. I think he should have waited for Lee to show up – but.. I understand why he didn’t wait to act.. He makes it clear why he needs to do this and what is at stake.

James you are an accountant. Not a spy. why don’t you act like one.
Wow.. we’ve heard this a lot this episode.. interesting to hear Amanda pull this one out of her hat – I think it’s a measure of how worried she is for him. she’ll say anything at this point.. but.. this argument certainly isn’t going to work with James – after everything he’s been through. At least James doesn’t seem to get cranky with her for pointing this out. I think he understands it comes from worry – whereas from others previously it has come from being dismissed as nobody.

-Folding Nappies (or for Americans- Diapers! ) Okay.. so Phillip and Jamie are too old for nappies.. and Dotty is too young for nappies Winking smile the point James is trying to make here though ( in his awkward sweet way) is that Amanda isn’t home doing things to care for her family..This is a rare insight into why Amanda does the work that she does- for this reason alone this episode is worth watching!

-Amanda’s outfit in the Tag and Guest pass
I love this outfit on Amanda! this blouse is lovely (yes even with the huge shoulder pads!) ..and the skirt isn’t too much. I prefer this look to some of the later season 3 outifts.. do we see this blouse again? we’ll have to keep a look out.
I like that Amanda’s guest pass is attached to her belt- that way I don’t have to flippin look at it all the time 🙂

BTW- Remember all our moaning about the pink pyjamas??!!! turns out.. this episode was nominated for an emmy award in the ‘outstanding achievement in costuming for a series’ category – this includes both the male and female costumer! rofl!!!! What do they give out that award for exactly?? managing to make beautiful Kate Jackson look ridiculous??!!!!! Okay okay.. maybe the nomination is for this outfit in the tag.. I like it.. oh lol and maybe for the plaid outfit that some of you hated, while some of us didn’t mind 🙂 tee hee!!! Okay okay! I know.. it’s for putting Lee in 4 different outfits for no reason in one day! 🙂 genius!!! whahahaah!!  

-The cobra death grip.
I think it’s interesting that Lee chose to explain that he used the cobra death grip on Dr Pain. He didn’t have to. He could have just made out like he beat him. But instead he chose to share that he had used the technique suggested by James – Lee has certainly come a long way with his acceptance of James! He doesn’t even mind when James says he made it up! Hey, it worked! and Lee thinks it’s hilarious! (as does Dr Pain’s chiropractor Winking smile ) Usually this sort of thing IMHO would get Lee cranky, but not here! 

Also it’s interesting that James chooses to tell Lee the truth- that he made it up!!!! maybe he didn’t want Lee to try it again 😉 but James could have gotten away with not ‘confessing’ that one! Another sign that James is now choosing to live in reality! 🙂

-The Tag.This tag is unique- I can’t think of another episode where the tag doesn’t end with either Lee and Amanda together, or one of them thinking of the other. I guess it’s typical of the episode -that often Lee was a bit on the sideline and the main focus was on James and Amanda..

Here, the episode ends with Amanda smiling after James- I like to think she is thinking about their adventure, and all the things she learned also. That after this episode’s events- Amanda has given herself an internal promotion! Smile as she now wants to become more of an agent and consciously, openly pursue that. Next episode- Over the Limit will play into this!! [hang in there- we are nearly there!!]

-Pott
Seems James has learned to accept and like himself Smile He is no longer disowning who he is, his family and hiding behind a James Bond persona.. I wonder if this is something Amanda learns here also? I wonder if she too gains a bit more confidence in who she is and what she can contribute at the agency thanks to her adventures with James in this episode?? Thoughts?? 

This episode has a very different vibe to most smk episodes. Usually the main story revolves around Lee and Amanda, but this week Lee takes a bit of a back seat as Amanda teams up with James. This offers us a unique perspective into Amanda- as James’ character has many parallels to Amanda.. Plus, while trying to help James, Amanda ends up stepping out and being more assertive with Lee and proactive. Good for her! While I wouldn’t want every episode to be like this- I think the insights into Amanda’s journey are so wonderful that I don’t mind shaking things up for a week Smile how about you??

-New End Credits.
Did you guys notice that they now show different photos from the episode as the credits run? that’s different!!! Oh and btw- looks like the story editor Robert Beilak has gotten promoted to ‘executive story editor’ what with all his fabulous work avoiding plot craters towards the end of season two… eh???? 😉

– The annoying factor with James, for me, was much less this time as I focused on the good in James, and didn’t make jokes about him like I’ve done in the past Winking smile I found him much more likeable this time around. Also, as the episode went on, I found him less stuffy, less annoying and I don’t know if it’s deliberate but more attractive.
How about you?? has James improved for you a little? I can’t wait to hear what you all think!!!! byeee for now!!!

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

  1. I agree with everyone else, this will never be a top episode, but it makes so much more sense in this order. Later in the season, it just seems to put the brakes on the progress of Lee and Amanda’s relationship. And season 3 we see the introduction of some great recurrent supporting characters (such as TP in this episode).
    I always though this episode was just about how Lee would have never tolerated James at all much prior to this episode and now he is much more accepting. Amanda has helped him grow as a person. We also see Amanda have to try to keep James (who is very much like Amanda in the early season) out of trouble. Kind of putting her in Lee’s shoes. But there is more to this episode. Amanda proves herself again which opens her up for some assignments of her own and finally training! There is also the comment about things happening when not trying so hard. I wonder if that is what happened in class act. Amanda was just so excited to get her chance, that maybe she was trying too hard and looked so inept. OH and I think that is why the writers made James so over the top, so that he looked even more strange and over-the-top then Amanda ever was.
    There is also a tie in to VM. In VM the guard said (to Amanda and Mrs. Courtney) something about going home to bake a cake. Here when Amanda tells James to act like an accountant, he makes a comment about her not being at home folding nappies. I agree–Amanda wants more, she deserves more. She may have had to give up some of her dreams to marry Joe and have the kids. She may have just settled and married Dean if she hadn’t met a certain spy at the train station. It is Amanda’s time. OK, enough rambling. Bring on the rest of season 3.

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    • I like your point about the nappies comment tying back to the VM bake-a-cake comment (which then makes me think of the ALSALScandal mother-of-the-year contest and how Amanda was unconventionally so much more than a cake-baking mom). We definitely are seeing Amanda starting to grow way beyond the mother and housewife persona.

      Like

  2. Clayton-Dobbs’s female associate! Why didn’t they give her a bad pun name? Yes, Jestress is still stuck on that, but it would have been so in keeping with the whole Bond theme. Plus, Ivanna is a Russian name and can lead to so many terrible puns.

    I was kind of surprised that Amanda actually believed in James’s secret devices in his car and briefcase, given what she knows about him playing and his James Bond fantasies. Lee believed in the Cobra Death Grip, at least enough to take a stab at it, but then, he’d already seen it when James used it on himself. Amanda is much more trusting and believed in James’s devices just on his say-so (and, of course, for the sake of comedy 😉 ).

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    • Yep, so much for her instincts! 🙂 But I enjoyed the comedy, even if predictable. Sometimes it’s nice to say, “I know what’s going to happen now” and then see it played out, allowing one to be smug and delighted about great insights!

      This scene always makes me think back to when my boys were young. (This was before young kids were not allowed to ride in the front seat.) They were fascinated by the hand-operated emergency brake between the two front seats with the attractive release button at the end of it. I told them it was an ejection button for the passenger seat, and they somberly kept their hands off of it. (Of course they caught on as they got a little older, but by then the fascination had worn off.) I suspect I subconsciously got the idea from WTAMBrand!

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    • Well, “Cruel-nikov” is a little bit of a pun. It at least gives a subconscious “bad person” aura to the character. 🙂

      Like

  3. Oh, one other comment… So Amanda has learned to drive standard and well enough to be able to handle a car that has the stick on the other side. I was just watching Car Wars and she was adamant about not driving sick in that one. Boy has she grown and she is ready for anything now! You go girl!

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  4. Just a side note: I’m pretty sure the scene where Lee tackles the baddie in the park was the one where BB knocked his head hard. In typical manly man fashion, he walked it off and kept working, but a little later he was looking around for crew members who were no longer with the show and thinking they were back doing the first season. Get that man to a CAT scan!

    Like

  5. This is what I really like about James. When he stops trying too hard he’s very insightful and an even more likeable bloke. Hit the nail on the head with Amanda, yes she definitely wants more. Is she afraid to admit that out loud perhaps? It’s lovely that someone voices to her and her lack of response is very telling, can’t argue with the truth.
    Lee in jeans and a semi awful jumper. Could have been worse but given the costumers were nominated for an Emmy…..well let’s just say ALOT of things could have been better! I do wonder if the judges had mud in their eye the day the perused the potential nominations…….
    I am really pleased that walking through this episode and in the new order has improved it dramatically for me. First time all I saw was James and his silly bumbling ways but it’s kinda nice to have seen beneath that. Sure it’s never going to be a top ten episode but it definitely makes more sense as a season opener. James does improve on closer inspection 🙂

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    • Jenbo, I really like how you point out Amanda’s lack of response to James’ comment. It is telling. It made me think about the circumstances of her divorce again, I know that we haven’t covered this in the story as of this point, but she does want more, she does want to do something that makes a difference. That has got to be a loaded issue for her due to the fact that she wouldn’t move her family to Africa…

      Have we seen Lee in such casual attire before??? I wonder if that was done on purpose?

      I really do enjoy this episode. The story of SMK would be lacking with out it.

      Like

  6. I think Stanley is embarrassed.
    He should be pleased to still be alive because the Cobra Death Grip seems to me to be a move that could actually break someone’s neck!
    Shame we didn’t see more of Stanley. He seems an interesting guy with a wicked dry sense of humour. What else does he do at the Agency besides teach and test agents on hand to hand combat?

    Like

  7. I like that exchange between James and Amanda when she reminds him he’s not a spy, he’s an accountant, and why doesn’t he act like on. James’ response is a direct hit for Amanda – for once she says nothing as the significance of this message sinks in. Yes, she has always wanted more and after two years with the Agency she now has the knowledge and confidence to achieve more. I believe she consciously sets out to be taken seriously at the Agency from here on in. Not that she hasn’t wanted to be taken seriously to this point but she now has the knowledge and experience to know what she needs to do to become a fully fledged agent.
    I agree with you Iwsod, Lee isn’t the reason Amanda wanted to work at the Agency and he isn’t the reason she now wants to step up her involvement and professionalism. She knows that even though she doesn’t have the skills and experience the other agents have, she also knows how her unique skills, perspective and normal life experience have time and time again been a valuable commodity for the Agency (and for Lee). For her own self-fulfilment and sense of purpose, and because she loves the work and the sense of making a difference she is now committed to becoming a professional agent.
    Her partnership and friendship with Lee is the icing on the cake. The unique relationship they already have and the ways in which they enhance each other adds depth to their professional and personal lives.
    Lee seems so much more relaxed and happy in himself and with others. Maybe he’s also just experiencing the early bloom of a real and healthy relationship with an interesting, attractive lady that seems to him at this point will fill that void in his life that he has become so aware of in recent months.
    This episode works so much better now that it is in its right place as the first episode of S1.

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  8. When did we last see that white shirt with the extra flappy bits over the shoulder on Amanda? I think DOA? Still, it was very fashionable at the time and at least she’s finally ditched the pink pyjamas.
    Love, love, love Lee in jeans – wh-hoooo! 😉 Hard to concentrate on what else is happening in this scene. The sweater’s fine too, not too OTT (over the top) for the 1980’s. A chap could wear that today and look stylish. Casual Lee is definitely every bit as good as tuxedo Lee. :-D
    Amanda’s skirt and blouse in the final scene – okay, I guess. Just wish she would wear slacks/trousers more often. The 1980’s style trousers really suit her figure and they are so much more practical for the rough and tumble of Agency work than the parachute skirts.
    They nominated this episode for an Emmy for costuming? Surely not the pink pyjamas! It must’ve been for Lee in jeans. Yeah, that’s it. 😉

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    • I love the jeans and sweater look on Lee, too! I really like how the sweater rides up just a bit during the fight scene. (Gleisterschloss was a long time ago, i’ll take what I can get!) Too bad there were no screencaps but they likely were blurry with all that action taking place 🙂 No worries, no complaints — plenty of other great caps!

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  9. I guess they had to use fake grass over concrete to smash the Czech tape recorder because it was so well made and couldn’t break it on regular ground. 😉
    There are a lot of warm fuzzy moments in the episode, it was a great way to focus on Amanda and her growth rather than LeeandAmanda. Like you said, I wouldn’t want all the episodes to be like this, but it was a nice change of pace.

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  10. When I first saw this episode I wasn’t too fond of it. And since I’ve gotten the DVDs I had a tendency to sort of fast forward through some of it. But after reviewing a few more times based on changing the episode order I have come to appreciate it more. Having walked through it has helped in that appreciation.

    I think we’ve discussed before how it has been easier to track Lee’s transitions from the Scarecrow persona to the real Lee. We’ve been able to see the changes he’s made since his association with Amanda began. Amanda’s growth and changes have been harder to lay hold of and I think this episode has been great for being able to see some of her changes. We get to see the Amanda that was, the Amanda that is, and the Amanda she’s hoping to become all in this episode. There are so many parallels to see in this. James Pott has been such a mirror for Amanda.

    James’s statement about “wanting more” is so true of Amanda. From TFT when we see Dotty sort of pushing Amanda toward Dean and she says she’s not ready. You get the idea then that she wants more than what she is getting from Dean. She knows something is missing. Her search for a job shows that she wants more than just staying at home and being a housewife and mother. Whatever she has experienced has left her unsettled and wanting more out of life. Her initial ideas of what she wanted out of life and what she had hoped would make her happy didn’t work out the way she thought it would.

    Like James stumbled onto what Clayton-Dobbs was doing, Amanda sort of stumbled her way into the Agency, but has been successful in helping to solve cases, been productive, and an asset, even though she knows its not always recognized or even acknowledged. While Amanda may not have given up a good deal of her life, she has certainly had her life changed and she has had to make adjustments to her life based on Agency needs. She definitely has to see a lot of herself in James and knows that she has more to offer and is ready to make that move towards making that happen.

    Lee is so relaxed in those jeans as he leans on the car door watching James and Amanda talk. There are several times in this episode where Lee just sort of backs off or walks away leaving James and Amanda together. Because of how he perceives James he is not in possessive mode. So he just sort of lets the interplay of that temporary partnership play out and doesn’t much interfere. In fact, he encourages Amanda to sort of stick with James. At this point, whatever is going on with Amanda is not yet challenging whatever Lee may be feeling, may be doing (or who he is seeing) outside of work (hint, hint) so he seems very relaxed about everything at this point. Love that laugh and comment as he leaves “he made it up!”

    Liked the stroll through this episode. Lots of little gems and nuggets in it. It’s funny, for some reason I kept wanting to make James Pott into James Potter. I’ve got Harry Potter on the brain.

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    • All good points here Valerie. This episode has definitely grown on me through this walk through and I see the value in pointing out Amanda’s journey through Jame’s eyes. And placing this episode as the season opener before all the heavy emotional episodes is refreshing and I like it much better!

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    • Valerie, you picked up on the part I like the best. That chuckle of Lee’s as he leaves the last scene and says “he made it up” just sticks out to me. It so not the way Lee Stetson would have behaved in the past and yet it is so natural, I think it shows so much growth for him.
      And I like how you point out how relaxed Lee is with the Amanda/James combo. He isn’t threatened by it and I am glad, because it shows how deeply his trust and relationship with Amanda has come.
      It seems as if what ever Lee has done with his compartmentalization in his life appears to be working right now. Of course he has gone through periods where it works tentatively and then a little shake up happens and it blows his careful balance out of the water….

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