4/18 Season Three, Episode 03 : Over the Limit- Scarecrow and Mrs King (Blog order-Episode 02)

Sooo picking up exactly where we left off.. Lee broaches the subject of…The Dress!!
Lee: Amanda?
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000640674_thAmanda: hmm?
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000640874_thLee: you were wearing…
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that fabulous dress…
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…the one with the errr..what do you call them ( he motions with his hands) ..
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Amanda: spaghetti straps.
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000645478_thLee: spaghetti straps
Amanda: yeah.
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000647480_thLee: and there was Pearl err..
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Lee and Amanda: pearl buttons..
Lee: ahh it was gorgeous.
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[Interesting that Lee mentions the fun time they had together – the party, the dancing.. enjoying those two things had nothing at all to do with the dress and everything to do with just enjoying each other’s company!]

Lee seems to have paid close attention to Amanda’s dress that night.. or is it the memory of her in it that is burned on his brain?? Me thinks it’s the latter.. though he wishes it didn’t. It’s all so darn inconvenient!

Oh dear.. get ready! I’m gonna get Freudian a few times with this scene!!!
HERE is a really simple summary of Freud’s defense mechanisms if you are interested.
Lots of denial going on here with the fabulous dress!! -Hmm.. I know! It was the dress!!! yes that’s it.. the dress was so special and that’s why he remembers her looking so beautiful Winking smile.  IMHO (as always!) with the dress- Lee is trying to separate Amanda from the woman who he found so beautiful that night- it was the dress! Not Amanda!!!  Soooo wrong of course..]

Amanda quietly smiles: thank you.
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000652285_thLee: where’d you get that?
Amanda: I made it.
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000653486_thLee: Ohhhh..

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( he instantly looks deflated, disappointed)
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.. it’s a one of a kind huh?
[I think this comment hints at special, unique Amanda – Amanda is one of a kind]
Amanda nods:
ah yeah I guess it is.
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000657157_thLee mumbles to himself: gosh darn it.
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000657957_thto Amanda: you know…3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000658491_th
I wanted to get a present for a friend of mine…
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…and um..
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000660894_th
…I just thought she’d look…
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( Lee motions with his hands Grr!!!– ie.. really hot and grab-able!)
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… you know… [No, and I don’t want to know, unless you’re talking about Amanda! 😉 ]
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…Great!
From the look on his face, I’m guessing he wasn’t thinking ‘great’ he was thinking something less PG rated! anyone else like to give Lee a good slap???!!!!!!  😉

When Lee begins to motion with his hands how hot this ‘friend’ of his would look in that dress? soooo inappropriate!.. and crosses a line they’ve never crossed. Yep- it’s over the limit!!!
Lee has never discussed his women and how hot they look with Amanda. She is not one of his buddies. They have always maintained that respectful distance. But here? Lee shares this with Amanda when he shouldn’t.

Why does Lee share how hot this new ‘friend’ would look with Amanda? I wonder if Lee here attempts to shift his close friendship with Amanda to pure buddy status – in reaction to romantic feelings he has been fighting for her.  This is how he would talk to another guy no?  Not someone you would ever see as a romantic prospect you know?  Again, this is a Freudian defense mechanism! called ‘Reaction formation’ – I think it applies.. Lee is converting his romantic feelings for Amanda into the opposite.. not hate- but rather buddy status!   – Epic Fail Lee! Oh and Morley’s scotch thoughts on Saved by the Bells reminded me of how after Service Above and Beyond, Lee tried to put Amanda in the buddy category there too- getting her to feed his fish (IMHO) he gives her a buddy slap on the arm and everything!
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000664030_thHere the shot cuts to Amanda.. her smile completely gone.. and her eyes wide with shock at what she is hearing here..
We hear Amanda simply say: Oh.
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000665699_th3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000666499_thLee, clueless, continues: – in something like that.

Okay, I said when Lee arrived late in the bullpen he didn’t seem ‘giddy’ at the starting of his new relationship – but here?? Okay- here he seems giddy!!!! Why is he giddy over his new girl? Well of course, this is just my current thinking.. trying to figure this all out.. do share your own!
I think, he is giddy about Amanda – and Lee’s focus on the new girl is an unconscious coping mechanism (yep he is full of them!). He is not conscious yet that this is what he is doing!
I think the writers are getting Freudian here with Lee! Lee has been battling denial now for quite a while – IMHO since Ship of Spies and the moment he ‘married’ Amanda Smile
Lee’s unconscious defenses here seem to have shifted into
Displacement. Displacement is the shifting of sexual impulses onto a more acceptable or less threatening target. Sexual feelings for Amanda at this point are threatening to Lee and their friendship. So he shifts the feelings onto this new girl to try and cope. I’ll come back to this throughout the episode but hopefully this Freudian idea won’t be too boring for ya! For me, it explains beautifully what Lee is doing with this new woman and Amanda – and it reduces my crankiness with Lee! IMHO Lee is giddy here for Amanda.. but is displacing these feelings onto the new girl. Well, it made me feel better! [Iwsod’s defense mechanism- rationalisation! whwhwhahaha!]
Back to this scene..
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They are silent a beat.
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[The expression on Lee’s face here is like – serenity! He’s got it all worked out!! He’s no longer stressed or anxious because he has put his feelings for Amanda on this new girl. Oh dear! ] Lee really is clueless to Amanda’s reaction..
Lee replies: ‘hmm’ happily..
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But.. we cut to Amanda …she looks to the side.. not sure how to respond to this statement of Lee’s. There are Limits to their friendship – and hearing about how hot his ‘friend’ would look in her dress is over the limit!!!! Yeah I’m gonna dress her up to look like you and then I’m gonna find her so hot! eek!!!!
Amanda
begins to look everywhere but at Lee..  Amanda then more forcefully says: ohhhh..
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000669903_th3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000671237_ththe shot cuts back to Lee who suddenly looks very worried.. no longer lost in a happy thought or memory. 3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000672105_th

He has finally seen Amanda isn’t enjoying his memory of that dress as much as he is!  [Or maybe the thought of how hot his ‘friend’ would look in it!]
It seems his stress returns! Hmm maybe this defense mechanism of Lee’s won’t work – if he knows Amanda isn’t happy with it??!!  Interesting!
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000672906_thHe watches Amanda walks off..
[Okay.. Lee’s hair is indicating Lee’s emotions and thoughts are topsy turvy! Winking smile ]
3.03-OVER-THE-LIMIT.avi_000674507_th and Lee kind of awkwardly smiles.

Lee is very confused here at what he is doing.. and how Amanda reacts.. no wonder he is preoccupied! I think the moment he notices her awkward reaction he realises he made a mistake by sharing.. or over sharing! – but whether he yet understands how wrong it was for him to think that of his friend in Amanda’s dress? I think that is something else-I’m not sure he gets how very wrong that is..yet! we’ll see.. 3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_000675408_thumb

 -Lee has just bumbled big-time!
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_000675675_thumbAmanda has left Lee where he stood, walked off and gotten on with her job without him.  

The scene ends here..

Oh dear!!! Lee !! Lee!!! you are in such denial here buddy!! Lee- you aren’t going to be able to replace Amanda with another woman.. or shift your feelings for her onto another woman..but.. Lee is sure going to give it a good go! Like the dress- Amanda is one of a kind, irreplaceable (Lee seems to have forgotten this lesson from Odds on a Dead Pigeon!) – and she can’t be narrowed down to a ‘type’ either!!!

Hmm yes get your ladyfriend a dress like that one you remember Amanda looking beautiful in.. that should do it! Sad deluded Lee.. I feel for him here.. He has to make this mistake in order to learn his lesson that Amanda is one of a kind though..and it was the woman in the dress that was so fabulous, not the dress!

I guess Amanda is getting progressively disconcerted about this friend.. maybe because of the very fact that Lee is even calling the new girl a ‘friend’ – has he called the Randies ‘friend’? wouldn’t he usually call them ‘a date’? Hmm.. I think that this one being a friend could be a bit different.. a bit of a red flag to Amanda that something is different with Lee here.. but I think she wouldn’t know what is different yet, and would just be confused at his behaviour here. I find it a little confusing myself! Shocked too I guess… can’t wait to hear what you all think Amanda’s reaction is!
Also, Lee seems to be making an effort with this friend, to buy her a special gift (aside from the fact that he wants to buy her Amanda’s dress! rofl!).

I think it’s great Amanda doesn’t pretend everything is great when Lee over shares- good for you Amanda!!
Since I’ve gotten all Freudian with this post, now is a good time to point out that IMHO Amanda’s defense mechanisms for dealing with her growing feelings for Lee have been, up to this point-
thought suppression and acceptance. I suspect thought suppression is about to become unworkable for Amanda.. Winking smile so thought I’d mention it upfront! [and stop suppressing this thought myself 😉 ]

I swear the writers had out their info on Freud’s defense mechanisms as they sat down and thought up plots for Lee and Amanda!! Winking smile  [Or they had consulted with Dr Pfaff! 😉 ]

 Oh boy.. can’t wait to hear your ideas on this scene and what’s going on !! [my only request: just try not to jump ahead in the episode 🙂 ] I’m thinking we’ll be wanting to come back to this moment later! byeee for now!! don’t forget all opinions are welcome!!!

50 responses to “4/18 Season Three, Episode 03 : Over the Limit- Scarecrow and Mrs King (Blog order-Episode 02)

  1. Pingback: A quick recap of Over the Limit..before or after Wizard?? | "Just walk with me.."

  2. I don’t really see Lee as over-sharing – it could be all right and proper, I guess I just see the hand motions as BB/Lee talking with his hands again, not descriptive — I attributed Amanda’s reaction to the actual rudeness of what Lee is doing here. He brings up their fun memory (he didn’t have to mention the dancing), compliments her, says how special the dress was, and then is DISAPOINTED when the dress is more special and unique than he thought! It wasn’t about Amanda at all, or he would have been proud that she had made the dress that she looked such a knockout in. Being disappointed that something is homemade is never a good way to make the person who made it happy!

    Also, I haven’t really thought this through, but I wonder if there could be other jealousy issues other than romantic ones going on here. It’s not unusual to simply be jealous that someone else is going to take that special place you hold in a person’s life. Amanda knows she’s one of the most important people in Lee’s life right now. She would not like to feel that someone else might be about to take that over, and this little exchange might have made her afraid that could happen. Lee might have somebody else he can take to embassy parties.

    As others have already commented, a dress is a very personal gift, so there might be something to see both in the fact that Lee wants to give it, and in what Amanda deduces about the relationship.

    On another note, this episode is one I’m having difficulty “placing” in the relationship timeline. I’ll be interested to see how it works going through in the revised order!

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  3. LOL, iwsod, I tried to read the article on Freud’s defense mechanisms but didn’t last long! I’ll just have to go it on my own! I do see what you’re saying about him trying to separate Amanda from the dress though. That does make sense.

    Oh dear. I haven’t read anyone else’s comments yet, and I’m not sure when I’ll get to them, so I wonder if I’m going to be off having my own little party for one on this. But hey, that’s ok! Let me explain.

    I don’t feel at all like slapping Lee here. In fact, I don’t really have an issue with him talking to Amanda like this, and asking her about the dress. They are friends and close friends at that. They may be close friends in a work relationship only, but friends nonetheless. Amanda has been there time and again for him and he for her. I just see this as Lee trying to do what friends do – they ask each other for help. He has no reason to expect a romantic relationship from Amanda, nor any reason to believe that she would want one, so why would she care if he asked her about a dress? Of course, he’s a bit naïve in his thinking, but that still doesn’t make me mad at him or want to slap him. I’m actually impressed he’s taken this step in their friendship and asking her for some help or advice.

    I do have a problem with how it seems he’s hinting with his behavior that he’s hoping Amanda will offer to make one for him. At least that’s how I interpret it. They may be friends, but that is over the limit. I don’t like that he does that. That to me just shows how much of a dunce he is about a real friendship with Amanda. He knows how she feels about his playboy ways, so why on earth would she even consider enabling him doing anything with a woman? And the fact that he’s telling her it’s a friend, just must make Amanda wonder if he thinks she’s an idiot? She’ll feed your fish and clean your apartment, but make a dress for a “friend”? Ha! No way! Duh!

    Ok, I just read the rest of your post and it looks like I may be thinking along the same lines – Lee is treating Amanda like a buddy. Maybe I should have read the whole post first, but I like to react to what I’m reading as I read it.

    Yes, Lee is confused by Amanda’s reaction. She is not acting like he expects a buddy to react! But I agree, he knows he’s stepped in it but not quite sure what “it” is. Looking at that last screen cap, I actually feel sort of bad for Lee because he looks like he’s really lost. He’s not sleeping well, he’s preoccupied (I do believe that), he’s got a new girl but he just did something that made his partner walk off on him and he doesn’t know why and it doesn’t feel good. He seems like he’s trying to make sense of some things in his life right now and the one constant, his good friend and work partner, he thought he knew and could rely on just did something unexpected. Uh oh.

    Iwsod, like what you say about not being able to replace Amanda with another woman and that forgotten lesson from OOADP! I also agree with how you say Lee calling his new girl a friend would be disconcerting to Amanda and send a signal that something is different with this one. Perhaps that’s partially why Amanda reacts the way she does. It’s instinctual.

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  4. Ok, I know I have made a thousand comments. I can’t help it, sorry. Here is one more, skip over it if you want to. I was reading a book to my son this afternoon for school. That is what we do, we read tons of stuff. This one happened to be Mere Christianity by CS Lewis. It was a chapter entitled “Sexual Morality ” and this one paragraph just reminded me of our discussion, especially when it came to the difference between how Lee and Amanda were handling things.
    “…people often misunderstand what psychology teaches about ‘repression’. It teaches us that ‘repressed’ sex (could we instead substitute something that would indicate a deep love relationship) dangerous. But ‘repressed’ is here a technical term: it does not mean ‘suppressed’ in the sense of ‘denied’ or ‘resisted’. A repressed desire or thought is one which has been thrust into the subconscious (usually at a very early age) and can now come before the mind only in a disguised and unrecognizable form. Repressed ( substitute what you will) does not appear to the patient as (that thing) at all. When an adolescent or an adult is engaged in resisting a conscious desire, he is not dealing with a repression nor is he in the least danger of creating a repression. On the contrary, those who are seriously attempting chastity (is that what is at the heart of Amanda’s ideas about her love life? I don’t know) are more conscious. and soon know a great deal about their own sexuality than anyone else. They come to know their desires as Wellington knew Napoleon, or as Sherlock Holmes knew Moriarty; as a rat catcher knows rats or a plumber knows about leaky pipes. Virtue – even attempted virtue – brings light; indulgence brings fog.”

    Hmmm?

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    • Yes, I mentioned in an earlier post that I thought Amanda was suppressing her romantic feelings for Lee (and has been doing so ever since Burn Out I think). I don’t think chastity is on her mind, she is simply wary of falling in love with Lee. So far the two reasons for this are :
      (1) she can’t see him as man who would want her as a romantic partner and the normal family life she represents (despite the many fine qualities she is increasingly seeing in him) and
      (2) he’s her best friend – she wouldn’t want to risk their friendship on a romance that might not work.
      I don’t think she consciously thought of these things every single day the last few months, but every now and then something will happen between them or he will do or say something that will remind her to be careful. I would imagine such things would probably be good things as opposed to negatives, e.g. he will do or say something really nice, or do something thoughtful for her, and such like. It would be much harder for her to resist the temptation to indulge in romantic thoughts when he’s being kind and generous and thoughtful. 😉

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      • hiya everyone!

        Kiwismh, I really enjoyed this comment of yours.. I can totally see this as describing my idea of where Amanda is at!

        I am sorry I am not able to comment much – lots of assignments due.. right when discussing best ep ever! ugh.. but I’ll just have to do the best I can.. and relish reading all your comments!!!

        BTW- Morley I enjoyed your thoughts you shared with us which Kiwismh has replied to here.. it struck me that – well for me at least- enjoying the episodes is really a collaborative process here! Someone shares a thought, it sparks another thought.. and we are opened up to a range of new and wonderful ideas!

        Thanks everyone! you rock!!!

        [I’ll do my best to keep the posts coming, assignments or not!!]

        Oh and you guys who said you enjoyed my decent into Freudian defense mechanisms? thank you!!!! you totally made my day!! no exaggeration!

        Okay gotta run! byeee!

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        • Iwsod, hope your studies are going well. I worked and studied for a few years – it was tough. Seemed I did nothing but work, study, sleep everyday. Good feeling when you get those assignments done and away though, isn’t it. Don’t think I could do it now – brain cells dying off at an alarming rate in my middle age! 😉
          I meant to compliment the fabulous banners by LoveSMK. She always does amazing stuff. So many talented people.

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  5. I am liking the Freud way of thinking, certainly explains a lot.
    Lee, Lee…… men do not just buy dresses like that for a “friend”. Especially not one you’re suggesting would make her look super hot with hand gestures and all!!!
    I wonder if Amanda would have acted differently if he had just simply said “can I ask you where you bought that dress from that you wore to the party blah blah blah” rather than this overkill of compliments which end up with him essentially suggesting his “friend” would look even better in it than Amanda did.
    It’s funny a few years ago I was in a pub and some bloke was waxing lyrical to me about my friends derrière to me. Why on earth would I be interested in what he thought of my friends assets?! That situation just reminded me of this scene and it’s comforting to know that the writers wrote an accurate portrayal of the male of the species 😉
    Amanda’s reaction hints at more than just over sharing. Not outright jealousy, maybe not even envy but a bit of disappointment that all this enthusiasm on the face of it is actually for another woman.

    I suppose the silver lining is, as has been said, it’s faux pas like this that give them both a chance to take stock and move on in their relationship.

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    • Seems to me the more I think about this scene that Lee, hand gestures and all, is trying to recreate whatever magic feeling he had with Amanda that New Years Eve. He thinks he can recreate that magic with this someone else and has seemingly fixated on the dress as a way to do that.
      Not many men have the savvy to buy clothes that their lady will actually like, and will fit perfectly as well. Okay, I guess Lee has helped enough women out of their clothes to have a better than average idea of what women like in clothes and what will fit but the idea to buy a dress for this other someone still seems a bit extreme. Why not a necklace, earrings or some other piece of jewellery – these are more normal things for a man to give a woman, especially towards the beginning of a relationship.

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      • Another fanfic recommendation. I put this one in my SMK world as well, well just the first part of it. But it would explain why Lee won’t buy a necklace for this other “friend.” “An Open Heart” by Dottie, you can find it on fanfic.net.

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      • LOL — I think if a man I just started dating choose a dress for me (unless it was for a costume party he had committed too before we started seeing each other) I would be running very far and very fast in the opposite direction. No matter how cute he is.

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        • Yeah, that’s how I would react too.
          Seems like our boy’s had an experience he really cherished – even if he won’t admit to himself the reason for that feeling – and now wants to recreate that experience/feeling.
          Also seems to me that part of that experience was tactile/physical – hence the hand gestures. He and Amanda danced perhaps at this Russian New Years party?

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          • And just one more observation – re-watching this scene I think Amanda has some pretty special memories of that New Years Eve party too. Up until Lee’s flub about the dress she looks as though the memory of that evening is something she cherishes too.

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        • Cindy, I agree! That has always bothered me, it had some controlling undertones to me….

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      • Like this a lot 🙂 especially the idea of recreating the magic of that evening.
        If a bloke bought me a dress when we had just started dating I think I might have run in opposite direction.

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        • Yes, just always seemed too weird to me for Lee to buy such a personal item in a new relationship. That would be one where you would call your girlfriends and wonder what kind of bizzaro this guy was, after you ran screaming in the opposite direction of course! Like your idea of Lee trying to recreate something kiwismh.

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        • I had mentioned something along those lines in my response — glad to know that I’m not the only one who thinks it’s, uhhh… odd.

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          • I had one boyfriend, ever, who bought me a dress. (Ahem, let’s not mention said fact to husband). It was a nice dress, and it went immediately to good will when the relationship ended. There is something really, really personal about giving a woman that kind of item. Very odd, indeed, for a new relationship.

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  6. I don’t give Lee a pass, but I don’t judge him too harshly here, either. I do think part of his trouble is insomnia, because he’s struggling so much with his feelings about Amanda. He’s decided that his prior life of “nightclubs and fancy restaurants” and the “lady of the month” isn’t working for him anymore. He’s maturing in how he thinks about relationships. Amanda is, of course, at the heart of all this, but he can’t acknowledge that just yet. He’s obviously met someone that he is comfortable with. She’s probably not the “graspy, fluffy” women he’s had in the past. He’s excited that he’s found a woman like this at the point where he might be ready for more. His conscious self is thinking about her, his unconscious self is comparing her to Amanda. His insomnia is a direct result of this struggle. I definitely think his buying her a dress is a result of the fact that this relationship is different. Most men I know would only buy something this personal for someone to whom they are committed. (Jewelry is not as personal as clothing, unless it’s a prelude to an engagement.) He wants to do something nice for her. A dress for this special event would be nice. He thinks of this beautiful dress he’s seen. “Oh, that’s right; Amanda wore it to that New Year’s Eve party. I’ll ask her about it.” Unfortunately, he goes about it alllll wrong. Then, he’s left wondering “What did I say? Did I do something wrong? Maybe I should have waited until later. Oh, man…”

    Amanda, on the other hand, handles this in her usual fashion. Move on, Amanda, keep walking. He has no idea what he just did. She’s struggling with herself, too. Her mother is sneaking around reading lingerie magazines. Lee is obviously in a new relationship, maybe even serious. Amanda is a little confused. The fact that Lee’s shown his acceptance of her in the field over the last few cases (BO, MBF, WTAMB) and his obvious admiration have had some impact on her feelings. I think she’s beginning to feel there might be a little hope that this relationship could be more. She’s not convinced, but she’s picking up signals. His opening here is so open and friendly, she can’t help but respond. However, his question about the dress totally rocks that response. She just doesn’t know what to say or how to respond. She does the only thing she can. She walks away and tamps down the hurt to move forward. Probably talking to herself in her head. “I should have known. He’s never really nice to me unless he wants something. Come on, Amanda. Get it together. You can do this.”

    I’m a little sad for both of them, here. Neither one is aware of what is really happening, and they’re actually at cross-purposes.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Love what you say here, debilyn! All of it! I think since OOADP Lee’s really been thinking that he needs to look for a woman who is more like the Amanda’s of the world and less like the Randi’s. And by more Amanda-like I mean all the parts of Amanda except the kids and suburbs and “normal.” Really great comment! Wish I had said it 🙂

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  7. Iwsod, your Freudian analysis really does sound right on the money for the dynamics of this conversation. I am with you, Valerie…. I can’t get mad at Lee. My reasoning probably is not a sound as yours, and I suspect it is a bit Freudian itself, but Lee clearly is so fond and protective of Amanda (and has been for a long time) that I readly forgive the “jerk moments.” To paraphrase Tammy Wynette, “after all, he’s just a man.” I know I shouldn’t let him off the hook so easily (oooo, that was unintentional but it works, doesn’t it!?) but Lee’s slip-ups almost always seem to lead to a wonderful redemptive moment.

    I think that to Amanda, her reaction to Lee’s words about the dress and the friend shocked the heck out of her. I hope that makes sense, that her own reaction shocked her more than the words themselves. Wake-up call, big time! And definitely a huge shove over the limit for her at a point where i don’t think she even realized she was standing on the brink…. if that makes sense.

    Which makes me ponder the makings of this episode. (I know,not nearly as amusing as talking about L&A.) The title “Over the Limit” is clearly a double entendre to describe both the main plot as well as the dynamics going on between Lee and Amanda. I wonder which came first? I can imagine that this evolving relationship thingee was forefront in the writers’ minds. I mean, I don’t think you just casually weave that into the plot and have it be so significant and effective. So did idea of Lee stepping over the limit/pushing Amanda past her limit drive the title of this episode, and the fishy theme was the secondary decision? The two aspects probably evolved in an alternating fashion, but it sure feels to me like this episode was all about pushing the L&A,relationship into new waters, and then the writers built a plot around that, rather than the other way round

    I do love this episode!!

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    • raffie, I love these comments. I agree about Lee’s slip ups. They almost have to happen in order for them to break out of the status quo, because he is so used to operating with those defense mechanisms. What I really enjoy about this show is that when the slip ups happen the two of them choose the loving responses and they choose to let the slip up cause them to grow. That doesn’t happen easily in real life, I have noticed.
      I also like the idea that Amanda’s response shocked the heck out of her and the fact that she was standing at the brink without knowing it. I really like that.
      I do think that the writers are often thinking of the L&A arc when they create the shows. I can often find some meaning in the titles. But then that is me, I can read deep meaning into a rock.

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      • “What I really enjoy about this show is that when the slip ups happen the two of them choose the loving responses and they choose to let the slip up cause them to grow.” What an accurate and affirming observation, morley. And it is indeed a real life challenge to be able move on with an attitude of forgiveness and even “forgetfulness”. And I will add that the SMK writers accomplished this growth with little pleasantly verbal fanfare, allowing us to perceive their growth for ourselves rather than painfully bludgeoning us with stilted, sappy, and insipid conversations about hurt and healing. (Hah, clearly my sensitivity switch is off tonight, but my alliterative one seems to be on 🙂

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        • ha haaaaa!! I like this!!! a lot!!! good thoughts Morley and Raffie!

          Yes this time I can’t quite find it in me to be angry at Lee – well at least not yet! I guess we’ll see!! I know the last time I went through this episode I was furious with him! So I totally get that many of you are! feel free to vent here haaa 🙂

          Maybe what you say (Morley and Raffie) is the reason why – he’s searching for answers.. he’s struggling.. and he isn’t going to get it right first time.. he’s got to go through this to learn.. but I don’t doubt that Lee cares for Amanda and doesn’t want to hurt her..

          Forgiveness is the ultimate expression of love isn’t it? 🙂

          I think I felt worse for Amanda when I was thinking she was head over heels in love at this point – I no longer see her as having fallen so deeply at this point (though she has feelings for him that are growing no doubt). I think it’s hard.. but she’ll be okay!

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  8. Ouuuuuch! This scene is so much more painful to watch in slow motion. Lol, I mean that in the best possible way. 😉 Lee is sooo embarrassing here, just makes me cringe. He just sets Amanda up with one glorious, unsolicited compliment and then YANKS it out and kicks her…uh, figuratively, of course. At least, that’s the way my mind tends to experience this. Amanda’s a better woman than I. My first witticism that springs to mind is along the lines of, “You want to dress up your dolls? Do your own shopping. Don’t come looking for my help.” Putz.

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  9. I do not feel bad for Lee. Too bad Amanda didn’t just slap him there and then maybe he would have gotten some sense in his head. Okay, I know Amanda would never do that, and that certainly wouldn’t work with Lee if she had. But still I just don’t buy him as being as clueless in this episode as everyone else. Lee doesn’t know anything about relationships but he’s been around the block too many times not to have some clue about women. Maybe he just thinks of Amanda as being a level above most women he knows but he just pushes it too far here, and on some level I think it’s on purpose. I don’t think he’s trying to hurt Amanda on purpose or it would have taken me a lot longer to forgive him. But I think he’s so uncomfortable at this point with Amanda knowing he’s with another woman, and even being with another woman, that he’s trying to take it too far the other direction.

    It’s like he’s trying to make it seem that talking to Amanda about another woman is just completely normal. I think Lee probably always has talked to Amanda about the women in his life to some degree as she always seems to know who he’s dating but I always imagined it being just in passing. Like I am having dinner with so and so or going out with so and so, and even then I always imagined Lee made a point to tell Amanda who he was dating as a way of keeping that distance between them and as another way of letting Amanda know they did not have that kind of relationship.

    Talking to Amanda about the intimate details of his relationship with another woman is definitely over the limit. Even if Amanda really was just a friend you don’t tell a woman how beautiful she looks in a dress and then tell her how you’d like to see another woman in that dress. I would have loved to see how Mr. possessive would have acted if Amanda had ever spoken about the intimate details of her relationship with another man. I don’t know I just can’t give Lee a pass here. I have several times in the past and I have even defended him when others have thought he was being a complete jerk but the excuses just aren’t flying with me here. And I was a psychology student for years, I had to study Freud in detail, and don’t get me wrong I definitely see Lee employing the defense mechanisms that IWSOD is talking about here, I just don’t see Lee being totally clueless.

    As for Amanda I think she handles this situation with a lot of grace considering I do see her being genuinely hurt here both by the fact that I do see her as having feelings for Lee that while most of the time she probably doesn’t even allow herself to acknowledge , but probably did at least on some level while getting lost in a pleasant memory these two shared only to metaphorically get a slap in the face. More to the point romantic feelings aside I think Amanda was just genuinely hurt that Lee would treat her in such a callous manner.

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    • (I would have saved slap for the end of the episode, but that is just me. 😉 )

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    • Like this Misty. I kind’ve feel that he was just casually trying to slip it into the conversation as if it was just normal, everyday stuff. But he can’t. He’s trying to be smooth and unconcerned and all “oh, by the way…” but failing miserably. Epic fail, Lee!

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  10. You know another thing that’s crazy… Amanda is looking really stunning here (despite the tie that Iwsod abhors) — goodbye hair-don’t, welcome back stunningly beautiful Amanda. (Yes, we all know that she was always beautiful, inside and out, but we all hated the hair-don’t, didn’t we?) And Lee appears blind to it — telling her about how stunning a dress was on her, back when he was drunk and fell into the borscht.

    I like what you say about the displacement — and I’m totally on board with it — but I still want to slap him. The poor guy really doesn’t have the first hint of a clue… he really doesn’t comprehend how to go about a relationship — he’s used to just wining/dining/showing women a good time…

    Regarding the use of “friend” — maybe it’s a red flag to Amanda as being something different to a date, but also she might just be thinking that he didn’t want to say “date” since he bought her a dress… Do/did guys really do that sort of thing? Buy a dress for a woman they’d just started dating? I would be very disconcerted if a guy did that… my creeper/smarm (?) meter would be red-lining. Maybe I’m odd like that, though. (And I think it’s kind of a Scarecrow thing to do — buy fancy stuff to “purchase” the “affections” of a woman for a short time. Note — I’m not at all trying to imply that his women were, uhhh, “ladies of the night” [is that PG-13 enough?], just that he doesn’t understand how to treat a real woman in a real relationship.)

    I think I’ll have more to say when we get a bit further in…

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  11. I am taking a page from BJo’s book and responding with my own comment before I read other people’s comments, so please forgive any repetition. I had so much fun reading this! Yahoo’s all the way!
    He knows that dress better than a man would normally. I mean details and because I do like to try to follow the basic season of SMK, I would place this episode in the fall and that means that at least 9 months has passed since New Years. Um 9 months. My husband would never remember what I wore 9 months ago (unless he had REALLY liked what I was wearing). And look at his face as he is describing it. He can see it in his mind as clear as day! He is excited about that image in his mind.
    I have never been so excited to see Freud’s name and “defense mechanisms” Yahoo, Iwsod. what fun!
    She made that dress! Of course she did. And he had the whole plan so cleverly thought out. I bet he had stayed up all night figuring it all out. Just ask Amanda where she got that (damn) dress and be done with it. That is all. That is your problem old man, just duplicate the dress. No way Mr. Stetson. That one was hand made by Amanda herself, one of a kind, for you.

    And he calls this person that he wants to buy he dress for a “friend?” That makes me stop every time I hear it. Amanda is the “very, very good friend” And I actually she might have been more ok with this conversation if Lee hadn’t used the word friend. If he had said a “date” or “girlfriend” I wonder if Amanda would have given him a pass? Not sure, but I wonder. For some reason when I hear Lee saying he is going to buy this dress for a friend after he has complimented Amanda so nicely it sounds like this friend is the buddy. Weird. He has already denied twice has he has any new woman in his life so far ad he has called Amanda beautiful and fabulous and recalled how much fun they had at a party dancing… odd.
    I don’t think he is really believing that this other person is going to look as great. It seems like a plastered on look to me.
    Iwsod, I love your comment about Lee’s giddiness here. And the idea that Lee is not conscious of what he is doing and the idea that he “married” Amanda during SOS.
    The idea that he is displacing his emotions because of a relationship with Amanda is threatening is spot on, it makes me jump up and down. And that picture of Lee looking so serene is beautiful. Just keep it all there Lee, you have spent sleepless hours constructing this perfect scenario…. oops, wait, Amanda isn’t buying it, she isn’t ok with it? Damn it. I love how quickly all ha disheveled stress comes back.
    I wonder if this was a wake up call for Amanda? I wonder how long it took Lee to fall asleep this night? He he ;D

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    • Melissa Robertson

      I seem to have trouble with following a time line with SMK ~ this episode seems like spring to me, but then in a few eps. they say they have known each other for 25 mths. & 2 wks. So if we go by TFT seeming like it was around Halloween then that ep. would be around the end of Nov. to the middle of Dec. and they are not dressed for the season. In Utopia Now the scenery seems to me like Fall and then at the end of Season 3 they say they have been getting to know each other for 3 years which would be back to Oct. but people wouldn’t be swimming in an outdoor pool that time of the year…oh well, it is SMK land 🙂

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      • I know they really are messed with the seasons. This is how I deal with it. I do think they were trying to stick with a realistic time continuum, having the episodes appear to be around the time they were aired. But there are two problems. The first with the airing order/ production order/ fan revised order issues. And the second being that those silly Californian acting folk have lost touch with the weather in good old Washington DC. So in that I suspend belief and just go with it.

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      • I always think it makes more sense if you condense the first 3 years into 2.5 years. To me, “spring cleaning” really is Spring cleaning. It looks like Spring in some upcoming episodes but then as you say Melissa, there are season anomalies all along the way.

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    • I also wonder what Lee thinks of Amanda’s irritated response. I do think that Lee has no clue that Amanda would want him as a romantic partner, he really thinks he is relegated to permanent friend status in her life. Her reaction could be a bit of info for him to ponder?

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      • Like this Morley. He must be able to tell he has upset her because her response isn’t normal happy Amanda. Maybe this is where the penny starts to drop for him that something about what he is doing or saying really matters to her.

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  12. A week or so ago, my daughter comes home with a rant that boys are so stupid and asked when do they ever stop being so dense. So to make her feel better I put on this scene. Her dialogue went something along the lines of “Wait! WHAT!?! NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! THAT IS NEVER OK TO DO!” . And socks got thrown at the screen. Yep, Lee is sooooo deluded and I really feel for Amanda here. The acting by KJ and BB is phenomenal.
    Going by my own similar experience (though not with a super hot spy like Lee), I am of the belief that Lee is very bewildered and can’t figure out why Amanda reacted the way she did. Men can sure be pretty dense.

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    • LOL! Good for you Cindy, girls need a sense of what’s waiting for them in real life! Truly, haven’t we all gone, “reeeeeeally????” to some inane male action? Repeatedly?! quick, hide this from my loveable but at time dense hubbie! Oh the stories I could tell….;)

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    • Lol! Like what you say Cindy. I have to show that “don’t do that”-scene to my boys (by the way 8 and 10 ) when they are older 😉

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  13. I really notice in this scene how Amanda really sparkles and blooms as Lee reminisces about the fabulous time they had at the New Years Eve party, and compliments her, errr. I mean the dress. I think for a few moments her own avoidance mechanisms fail her and everything about her expression is showing her inner feelings for this man. Does she allow herself for a few moments to indulge in the “fantasy” that she and Lee could share romance and a future together? I think she does, at least to some degree.
    I think this accounts for how *badly” she takes it when it at last becomes apparent what he is leading to. Normally Amanda is much better at covering up, at putting a smile on her face and carrying on politely and serenely (well, as serene as Amanda can be given her enthusiastic and bubbly nature).
    This time she can’t cover up, she can’t find any words, she can’t even muster a smile. She removes herself from Lee’s presence as quickly as possible.
    I imagine she walks away feeling a mixture of disappointment, hurt and confused. I think she could be a little angry at herself too for letting her better judgment drop and indulging in the “fantasy”. Could she begin to feel the first pangs of jealousy at this point? This isn’t a natural emotion for Amanda, she is not a jealous natured person. Could she be jealous of a supposed someone in Lee’s life that she barely knows a thing about?

    {iwsod fixed typo 🙂 }

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    • Kiwismh, you have reminded me how much I have not thought about how Amanda responds to this. I need to think about that. Thanks you for the reminder. Now I will have to go over the whole scene again… oh well 😉

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      • I think I will learn more about how Amanda reacts as I watch the upcoming scenes. She sure seems to really enjoy Lee’s compliments, that is for sure. He rarely bestows them and when he does he means them. This one must have been a real rollercoaster for her. What a day so far for Amanda. She gave that same kind of look to her mother that morning as she drank her milk. Everything that she thought that she knew and the relationships that she has enjoyed with her mother and Lee are suddenly changed. Both of these people are doing weird, unpredictable things. I bet she feels like she is walking on ground that is moving like an earthquake. Add to that the upcoming training session at the firing range with a gun?!
        I won’t even mention what else is going to happen in this day (oops, I just did)

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        • I hadn’t thought of Amanda trying to figure out some things in her life before reading your comment, Morley, but it makes sense now having read it. So they are both experiencing weird things in their lives and are trying to figure them out.

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  14. Iwsod, I just love how you’ve broken this all down. And yes, I do feel for Lee, here and throughout this episode. I didn’t get angry with him as some others have stated, but I will hold off on why until the end.

    Poor Amanda! She is just smiling so and is so happy and relaxed and then BAM, Lee just takes the wind out of her sails. He seems as if he is fishing too. He baited Amanda with the whole ‘Remember when’ scenario and sort of led her down this primrose path, maybe to ease his way in to what he wanted to ask and maybe to loosen Amanda up so she would help him out.

    One minute he’s got insomnia, then he doesn’t have a date but is just preoccupied and now he has a friend that he wants to buy a dress for. Wow, that must be some friend. And not just any dress, one that he built up as being so fabulous and Amanda looked so beautiful in it and he could describe it so well. Just for a friend? So hard to see Amanda lose that smile. You can just see the wheels turning in her head. I think she is trying to wrap her mind around what exactly is going on with Lee. I think she has an inkling, but may be in a bit of denial herself, not so much about Lee, but maybe about what she was beginning to allow herself to feel. This whole thing may be giving her pause as to where she was headed in what she was thinking or even feeling about Lee.

    At least Lee gets from Amanda’s reaction that that was not the way to go and it was the wrong thing to do. And love how Amanda can hold herself together to just walk away.

    Maybe Amanda is thinking, “Hey, some ‘friend’ gets a dress, and all I get is a big panda?”

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    • Valerie, I am looking forward to you explanation as to why you don’t get mad at Lee. I wonder what Amanda thought about the panda if it was in her line of sight when she got home?
      I like the way she walks away too. That is the kind of woman I can admire. register the hurt, don’t get caddy and walk away and be about the business at hand. Go Amanda.

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    • “…all I get is a big panda?”

      Damn! Gotta wipe the wine spray off my computer screen again…. Good one, Valerie!

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    • Finally! I get back to this comment of yours Valerie!
      I just wanted to add I loved your comment here and this:

      Maybe Amanda is thinking, “Hey, some ‘friend’ gets a dress, and all I get is a big panda?”

      I roflmbo when I read that one! Genius!!!!! 🙂

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