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

Looks like it’s the next day.. Lee and Amanda have stopped by to visit the Sullivan’s boat..
Lee: well I can’t imagine O’Keefe or transoceanic industries bothering you folks a3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002708108gain.

[‘Folks’ Lee??!!!! lol!]
Whooo black jeans.. nice.. I like the shirt with the white shirt look for Lee.. and hooray! Brown vinyl jacket is gone.. hopefully Lee reached his limit with it Winking smile
Elizabeth responds:
we never really wanted that much.
Eric: just to make an honest living.
Eric gives Elizabeth a hand getting onto the boat.. gosh darn, this couple is just the salt of the earth! and well everything is right in the world again because these good people are free to go about raising their family again! (God Bless America!)
only.. we don’t know if things are right in Lee and Amanda’s world yet.. they seem friendly enough, and very fashion co-ordinated.. but.. where do things stand between them? Winking smile
Amanda: well, there shouldn’t be anything standing in your way now.
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[Ohhhh boy.. I wonder if this statement relates to Lee and Amanda too.. only Amanda doesn’t know it yet?!!]
Lee: yeah, especially with that new legislation in the congress. [There’s Lee and Amanda legislation? oh wait..]
Ummm what new legislation? I didn’t think Legislation was the problem? Transoceanic knew the limits and they were just getting away with it because they were corrupt.. What new law was needed? that you really really should follow the existing law? Winking smile weird.. anyway, when Lee says it – it sounds really good! 🙂
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Lee shakes Eric’s hand and wishes him luck, the Sullivans say their thank yous and Lee and Amanda walk off.. with big smiles on their faces! [Yes they are moving. hooray.. my dvds don’t like screen grabs when they are moving! I’ll just have to go with the best ones.. ]
Amanda lets out a big satisfied sigh, happy the Sullivans are safe again.
Lee: Well!!!!
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002731264Things seem a little awkward between them… friendly.. but lots of nervous smiles.. Amanda is quiet, and lets out another sigh..
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002732132Lee: ahhhh. You’re probably busy tonight right?…
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002735001(Amanda shrugs) …PTA, Den mother’s club… [he’s getting to know her world isn’t he!]
Amanda: No haa..
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002736336Lee: you’re mother’s card club?
[Oh? is this the first time we’ve heard of this?]
Amanda: No
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002737137Lee: Ohhh….
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002742142
…I thought maybe umm .. I thought maybe we’d have dinner tonight… [ah! Lee’s hands are flapping! bless him! go on Lee you can do it! Smile ]
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002743810
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002744944…You know just the two of us…
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…err  alone.
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Rofl! I think this means without Leslie..because last night she tried to weirdly include Amanda in their dinner plans! Interesting that Amanda doesn’t seem terribly affected by this offer.. not realising yet what Lee is really saying!!
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002747013Amanda: well you and Leslie have a dinner party at the Russian Embassy tonight.3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002750216
[oh hooray! the continuity actually works here! lol!]
Lee: ahhhh.. Yeah..
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[Lee is doing that cute bashful thing again he did earlier in the police station.. how are these moments similar? Hmm maybe it’s because Lee is wearing his heart on his sleeve in both situations- he is saying: Amanda is important to me? Smile Thoughts anyone?
Lee doesn’t seem to have forgotten this prior engagement with Leslie.. he seems to have already decided what he’d rather be doing IMHO!]
…ahhhh..3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002751818
(Lee nods and gives a far off look and a bit of a wry smile.. )
He looks so gorgeous here!
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002752886
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002755021…she won’t be lonely believe me…3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002756122
Ie. don’t worry about her!  [I’m not! 😉 ]
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 …she’s working anyway….
Whoa!!!! This is where Amanda finally reacts with shock, though lol she seems to be trying to contain herself.. What do you make of this? Amanda wasn’t thrilled until she knew Lee preferred her company to Leslie??   I think Lee is saying Leslie and him are not that close after all –squeeeee!
…She’s got her own invitation..
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002760560(Amanda smiles at hearing this! awh!!)
…No I thought err maybe err you know a nice steak errr…
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…a bottle of red wine..a baked potato on the side…
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3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002767300
…no shop talk for a change?…
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(Amanda wordlessly reacts to this last suggestion- ahh!!! Smile )
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_0027689683.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002769369
…you know we…
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…errr we…
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…don’t do enough of that…

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Too many pics here?? nooo I didn’t think so!! 😉
(Lee quietly smiles here- this another one of his wistful smiles like we saw earlier in the episode?? what do you think? )
…Do we.?
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002773173
3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002774507Amanda
shakes her head: not by a half.3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002776976

And the scene ends with them quietly smiling at each other…
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and then Lee sort of lets out a laugh.3.03 OVER THE LIMIT.avi_002778778

My my… after all the dramas.. it is quite a sweet and peaceful ending! Well I certainly can’t wait to hear what everyone thinks!!! If you haven’t jumped in yet –feel free!!

Isn’t this lovely.. Lee seems to be telling Amanda he prefers her company to Leslie’s and that it isn’t just about work.. It is all quite subdued though don’t you think?? sincere, but low key..  I think some may see this as Lee letting Amanda know he romantically prefers Amanda, what do you think? for me.. I don’t really see it though..

I do think Lee has started thinking about how he could have one special woman in his life he can trust, and be honest about all aspects of his life with. Huge progress here!!!! He went looking for that with Leslie – the trouble was- he already had that with Amanda! So things didn’t work out the way Lee had planned… but he learned a thing or two I think! 🙂
Does this mean Lee is now committed to romancing Amanda? do share your views!!!
I’m thinking no… this tag here has more of a peacemaking, reaffirming their friendship kinda vibe.. and maybe even building on their friendship, and making it broader than just revolving (or pretending to) around work. This does not have a romantic, flirty quality to it, which would suggest Lee wants to take it to the next level romantically.

I think this tag is about their friendship, and Lee lets Amanda know she is more important to him than Leslie.. and I guess it could also be an apology  – Lee does like to do dinner as an apology lol! Lee has lots to be sorry about Winking smile but.. he is certainly the wiser for it all! and Amanda is gracious and accepts his offer, and takes up the opening to expand their friendship some more with no shop talk!!! Smile whoo hoo!

Sooooo where do you see Lee now?? Where do you see Amanda now??

I think Amanda has had a big shock this episode, and had to admit to herself she does still have some romantic feelings for Lee after all – (which were buried deeep in her unconscious!) – she thought she had dealt with them. Plus, Lee has given her something to think about with what he now considers ‘perfect’ – seems normal is now ‘perfect’… Lee has changed!!!! Sooo I think Amanda begins to question whether she can actually have a romantic relationship with Lee now.. I think she is on watch, wait and see status at the moment.. she isn’t jumping into anything.. at this point, while Lee did pass up this one night with Leslie, that doesn’t to me mean it’s over (and yes we’ll discuss this all after wizard!!) but happily Lee has let down one of his walls, and opened up even more of himself to Amanda. I think Lee is also telling Amanda that it’s okay – he will begin to treat her better, not take her for granted.. and be a better friend to her – they don’t do that enough!

So I see Lee at this point as having begun to shift toward wanting a serious relationship, and though he doesn’t yet understand what it is, he is beginning to explore the very strong feelings he has for Amanda now.. He isn’t calling it that though– he is taking it very slowly and starting off by just opening up his life a little more to her.. and Leslie?? well at this point, I think he might still be dating her, but IMHO it won’t be for long because Lee’s heart is already well and truly Amanda’s.

For me-it is at this point that he begins to stop denying it, and actually honestly start exploring it within himself. But it is going to take time for him to work this out. we can discuss what he needs to work through as we progress-I’ll resist  that discussion for now! But.. I would say that for now, he will not move beyond friendship with Amanda..

Do you think Amanda is in love now?? I’m still not seeing it as really truly ‘in love’ but she has romantic feelings for him sure! I would describe Amanda now as being open to the possibility because of the episode’s events.. whereas before, she had Lee in the ‘never gonna happen’ category! I think she really respects and values his friendship, so she isn’t going to push things along in a hurry or seek to define things.. she’s just going to wait and see.. [I don’t even think I have a clear picture of when I know for sure Amanda has fallen in love with Lee – I’m looking forward to finding out when I see it as we continue our walk!] So there you have it from me..

Now- What about you??? What do you think?

I don’t know about you guys, but I almost feel like there is a part of this episode missing? I mean where is the moment where we see Lee realise he wants to be with Amanda? lol.. big jump from Lee angry that Amanda didn’t shoot O’Keefe to this!  I would have liked to have seen that.. we are only left to surmise it from Lee’s decision in the end..maybe they wanted us to wonder what happened – and be unsure if Lee was still dating Leslie at this point.

There are a few scenes in the script here towards the end that were removed.. Straight after Lee and Amanda say goodbye to the Sullivans Lee and Amanda walk off and Amanda asks: [Script Only]
“Amanda: time for the midnight rambler to saddle up? [yuck!!! ]
Lee: not yet. I made an appointment with Leatherneck Nelson at the firing range for five o’clock.. for both of us.
Amanda: for both of us?
Lee: I though we’d review some basics.
Amanda thinks about this, not sure how she feels.
Lee: we’ll be finished in time to make the seven-ten show at the Rialto.
Amanda: The show? you and me?
(Lee nods, smiling)
What show?
Lee: ‘Annie Oakley’ It’s a movie about another well-known female sharp shooter…
Amanda: funny big fella, very funny..
Off Lee’s smile and Amanda’s reluctant grin the scene ends.”

Then!!!! they have a tag after this back at Amanda’s between Dotty and Amanda!!! (Amanda waiting up late for Dotty) I might hold off transcribing this, though someone else can share it if they like!

But! I did like the Lee/Amanda second shooting range mention – only because it showed Lee was going to help Amanda with her shooting and he wasn’t blaming her for doing a poor job of it. I felt like this was missing from the episode we got after Lee was such a jerk!
But.. I didn’t like how Lee assumed they could go to the shooting range for an appointment and a movie. I like how in what we got- Lee wasn’t sure Amanda was free.. and I much prefer the tag that we got any day (none of which was in the script). I think the tag is a change revolving around all the changes to do with the Leslie character.. it gave us a clue that Leslie was on the way out – or at least soon would be Winking smile and.. it upped the status of Lee and Amanda’s friendship to close friends outside of work too.

I also enjoyed the steak, red wine and baked potato suggestion.. lol.. it was nearly hamburgers! but it did remind me of the end of ROTPast and Lee and Amanda trying to hide their regret that they wouldn’t have hamburgers and wine after all Winking smile‘like real people’ 🙂

I also liked the potato on the side – as it said to me Lee is looking for ‘normal’. He isn’t looking for fancy set tables, candles, orchids on the table etc. He thinks having dinner with Amanda and no shop talk is special enough already!!! Smile This is just my take on it though.. so feel free to share your own thoughts with us all!!

Ohhh and I never did get back to the insomnia thing.. oospie.. What caused it? Was it because he was with Leslie?? Hmm.. I’ve decided it was because he was up all night mentally and emotionally wrestling with his demons from the past.. and what he was doing in this new relationship, and how he could help things to be better with Leslie (the dress! get that dress!!) I think at the start of this episode Lee was up to his neck in denial about Amanda so would not have been focusing on her. Was he also up late with Leslie?? who knows.. I think it’s possible…maybe and maybe not.. thankfully this is not confirmed to us!!! (clever powers that be! Smile ) I’ll leave that one up in the air.. I don’t know and I think I never will know and you know what? (LOL) I think I don’t want to know!!! 🙂

One last thought from me- when Lee turns down the evening with Leslie at the Russian embassy to have dinner with Amanda – he isn’t just turning down Leslie.. he’s turning down the dress! the party! and trying to recreate that wonderful night he had experienced with Amanda one new years.. you know? He has in essence chosen to not try and recreate it- he has instead chosen to go with the real thing: Amanda. Rather than a woman who resembles Amanda in a dress that resembles Amanda’s dress at the Russian Embassy again – this is big no? Lee went out and bought that dress and gave it to Leslie for the party that night- and now Lee isn’t even going to go!!! He’s totally turned his back on that plan.. Squeeeee!!! No wonder Amanda reacts most surprised to the moment when Lee tells her Leslie won’t be alone and has her own invite. Given Amanda knew Lee was trying to replicate Amanda’s dress for Leslie that night, I think it would mean a lot!!!!! Double Squeee!!! 🙂

OvertheLimit-Banner6

Beautiful Banner Lovesmk!!!! Thank you!!!!  Smile
This episode has been wonderful to walk through with you all!!! you’ve given me new insights into this biig episode!!! thanks everyone!!!  So what’s your overall take on this episode? anyone? everyone? 🙂 Okay- byee for now!!!

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

  1. Waaaay too many comments to read, so sorry if anything I bring up has been said already:

    I have to say this episode is one of my faves, but then again, it’s not (kind of like ‘Brunettes are in’), because Lee seems to ‘want it all’ in this one, he wants his fun with Leslie, but also wants some kind of a relationship with Amanda, too … or something like that??? IDK … I can’t figure him out in this one.

    And his attitude after she saved his flippin’ life got to me, if I were Francine, I’d have smacked him upside his head and been all like “The woman just saved our LIVES, you big dope! the LEAST you could do is ACT grateful!” UGH his attitude throughout this episode made my temper boil!

    Do you guys think that he has broken up with Leslie at this point? the way he speaks about her being at the embassy party leads me to believe no, and if that is true, Amanda surely is a bigger person than I am, because I would have gone frosty to him and been all like “I dont think it would be appropriate to be having dinner alone together, since you are dating someone.”

    Just … GRRRRR! Sorry, rant over LOL.

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    • Me too. No matter how cute Mr. HotBuns is, I would not let him off so easily. I probably yelled at the screen – “Have some self respect Amanda!” I am now of the opinion (though I didn’t think it initially) is that Lee had not slept with Leslie and maybe Lee and Amanda didn’t see this as a date but for a chance for two friends (ya right!) to get back on track after all this craziness.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I dont think Amanda saw it as a date, but I think Lee was kind of hoping it would be, a dinner alone (presumably at his apartment, IDK if they said or not), that’s not something someone does with a ‘friend’. Friends go out for pizza, or go bowling, they dont have steak and potatoes over candlelight dinners.

        I think this is Lee trying to figure out what he wants. To me, Leslie isnt looking for anything serious, her job is too demanding for that, i think she is just looking for what Lee USED to be looking for, a light hearted, fun, good time for however long it will last. Or at least that is the vibe I got from her.

        But Lee doesnt seem to want that anymore, like he was trying to fall back on his old ways, and with the ‘tried and true’ type of girl he used to like, but they just dont ‘do it’ for him anymore, and at this point, he can’t figure out why.

        And after the way he treated her when she saved his friggin’ life???? If I were Amanda, I would be saying ‘not this time, BUSTER!’

        Yeah I love Lee, but that doesnt mean he gets a free pass for bad behavior, either! Shame on him, here!

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        • Lee would have deserved it if she charged at him for treating her that way. Although Amanda’s cool, calm demeanor may be chipping away at Lee with almost the same result. The guilt can be so much worse. When I think about the changes in Lee and how much influence Amanda’s had just by being herself, maybe that’s part of what turned him around.

          Lee was kidding himself with Leslie. I think they were sort of together, but as you said, Leslie had her job, which probably made dating fall somewhere behind that in priorities. Sadly, he’ll probably just stop calling her, which is a poor way to handle things. It seems to me like he’s trying to make sense of his feelings toward Amanda and in the end realizes it’s useless. Amanda’s great at picking up those little details in other people’s relationships, but she’s too caught up in some of her own feelings to see what’s going on.

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          • Agreed! He was kidding himself and I think that he realized it when he accidentally called her Amanda, you could see the wheels turning in his head and this is part of Lee’s journey through his own feelings … and it’s one he HAS to go through (however maddening it might be for us, the omnessent viewers LOL).

            We also see a different side of Amanda in this ep, we see an Amanda who is getting ‘fed up’ with Lee and his womanizing, playboy behavior, and his ‘You’re hot, then you’re cold, you’re yes then you’re no (Thanks to Katy Perry for the lyrics that explain his behavior so well IMO)’. I think that Lee was shocked at that outburst of venom from Amanda during the elevator scene … but he shouldnt be … because he will act like she is the most important thing in the world to him, then he will turn around and be mean to her, and date other women. IMO i thought she was exceedingly patient, LOL.

            I also think that Amanda is the one woman who finds ‘flirty, charming Lee’ to be … well … a bit of a turn off (and honestly, so do I), and THAT I think is the main thing that stumps the heck out of Lee, because his tried and true game plan with women that has worked so well, so long for him all of the sudden doesnt work with this ‘simple’ suburban divorced mother of 2. She is smart enough to know that ‘shy, bashful, modest Lee’ is the REAL Lee and for Amanda, Lee being his REAL self is MUCH more attractive than any front he could put up.

            Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not sure this will be seen but I feel the need to add my comments.

    First of all I love this blog! I just found it as I am watching the series in order for the first time ever. I became a fan in the lifetime years and found the fan fiction about 15 years ago, but I drifted off to other interests. Now I am back and it has been so fun to experience it after being away so long! Just like this blog!

    Date vs apology. I have read most of the comments, but forgive me if I repeat or copy an idea- just formulating myself. I am not sure what lee needs to apologize for. The dress comment was insensitive but lee has been downright mean in the past without a need to have a dinner apology. If it is Leslie in the apartment, that’s not his fault. He didn’t plan for that. If it is that he decided to stay with Leslie instead of stakeout with Amanda then I think it answers the date question. If lee feels guilty or awkward about Leslie and Amanda meeting or if he feels guilty about staying with her for dinner rather than spend time with Amanda on an unneeded (in his opinion) stakeout and he feels the need to apologize then that realization of guilt can only illuminate his feelings. Okay. That rambled. Let me try to say it again. The only way he consciously feels guilt about Leslie (and needs to apologize) is if lee knows he has feelings for Amanda. Or if he knows Amanda likes him. If a work friend comes over and my current date is there, there is nothing awkward about that. If I know I am starting to feel something for him or that he has a crush on me – then it becomes awkward. Perhaps his realization of the awkwardness is what is the catalyst for ending things with Leslie. I think he does end things that day. As said by another poster, he could have dinner with Amanda any night, Leslie is not always in town.

    Red wine and steak is a special dinner even for our gourmet food eater Lee. Why say the menu if he is not trying to make the point that this is not business or friendship. As other people have said, this is a pointed invitation. This was planned. There was no “wanna grab a burger?” ( that would be friendship)He made sure she was free first so her response to him would give him a definite answer of where she stood. If she was free but said no, she was not interested in a date. If she says yes – it is the green light to move forward.

    While I may be prejudiced because I always thought this was a date, I do feel that we have seen lee apologize genuinely for much worse. If he thinks he screwed up enough to apologize then there must be an acknowledgement of conscious feelings from him to Amanda or Amanda to him.

    Again not sure anyone will see this now, but looking forward to catching up to you ladies!

    Like

    • Hi Amy! Really glad you found us and that you decided to jump on in and join the conversation/rambling/speculation/swooning! 🙂

      Posts are open to comment on anytime 🙂 It’s lovely to have a reminder of over the limit.. and this scene? this is the current header on the blog Amy! so funny… did the header prompt you to comment? 🙂 Mind games!!! tee hee..

      Anyway, I’m a little fuzzy on the detail of over the limit or what conclusion I came to at the end of the walk.. forgive me! But..I remember I was thinking it was not a date. Think I can remember all my reasons why now? Nope! lol.. hey this is one reason to write it all down ona blog.. I can go find it and read it – I don’t have to remember. lol.. alas though, I currently don’t have time to go read what I was saying back then- again forgive me!
      Hoping to have some more free smk time very soon though..
      I am not sure when I came to this conclusion now.. but at some point early season 3 I started thinking they were dating – but they were not calling it dating.. I wonder was this tag the start of that? hmmm..
      Maybe – it is a date.. but.. neither Lee nor Amanda are calling it a date. They would call it an apology. How does that work? everyone? anyone? Amy? lol..

      I think Lee became clearer on his feelings for Amanda.. but at this point Lee isn’t sure how Amanda feels about him. I think Lee has been a playboy and not an option for Amanda up to this point.. so Amanda needs time to see there is a real change in Lee before she’ll let her romantic feelings for him, that she’s always harboured IMHO fully blossom.. she’s held that back for a long time.. for good reason!
      So while Amanda accepts the dinner invite, it can be viewed by her as an apology.. so I don’t see it as Amanda accepting a date with Lee and she’s ready for it..
      I agree Lee’s invite was well planned.. and strategic. but I’m hesitating with thinking Lee knows it’s a date and wants it to be a date. I guess because of how I view their progression nowadays.. but maybe also because of how I would interpret a ‘date’. I think we had discussions around this as well no? what’s a date, and what’s friendship..
      Maybe the take away message is that if we are asking that question – then it is not obviously a date – it is ambiguous.. so there are no definite answers.. only question marks and speculation? okay now i’m rambling.
      Got a busy day ahead of me here just wanted to say a big welcome to Amy -and so glad you came across this blog and hope you enjoy diving into this fabulous little show with us all 🙂

      So interesting this has come up now – where we are up to in Fast Food for Thought is very much playing into all this over the limit stuff! Are you watching/reading ahead at all Amy? don’t want to spoil things for you if you are not.. but I agree with you – can’t wait till you catch up to us! 🙂
      Byee for now – hope everyone is well
      and that Valerie is enjoying SMK camp! (rofl)

      Like

      • Iwsod, I enjoyed SMK camp so much that I took all the little SMK references as a sign that I should just go for it and do a post(s) on Amanda getting what she wants. School ends in about a week and a half and I’ll begin working on it.

        Like

    • Welcome Amy! This is a pretty active blog, with some pretty awesome people. And your comment will for sure be seen. Glad you decided to participate and I enjoyed your comments. And this scene was heavily commented on.

      I found this blog probably in the same way you did. It was after I had gotten the DVDs and was so excited to find that people still love this show and actively discuss it. I didn’t have anyone to discuss it with when the series first aired on TV. So glad you found it and hope to hear more from you.

      Like

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

  4. Oh my word, way too many comments to wade through….I kind of got lost in a sea of dating do’s and dont’s and opinions about baked potatoes?!#=/?
    My only comment: Lee had insomnia because he couldn’t get Amanda out of his head while he was trying to have a relationship with Leslie and for once in his life he was not in control of his emotions or the woman in his life (Amanda)……he was probably realizing that his playboy lifestyle was no longer attractive to him and confusion had definitely taken over!

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    • Hey Gruvy Granny great to hear from you! oh yeah.. see that is why I try and keep episode discussions on track – most of the time.. you know..without being completely strict about it, after all we are people first.. and a blog second 🙂 but yeah! I hear ya!

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on Lee’s insomnia! yeah very true.. this no longer wanting to play the field would have come as a shock! 🙂

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  5. Hi all! I am new to JWWM and boy am I glad I found you guys! 😃 This kind of in-depth analysis of SMK is exactly what I have been looking for, so I hope you don’t mind if I throw in my 2 cents. 😉

    I agree with those who see this as a date. In this scene, Lee reminds me of a shy teenage boy who has just found the nerve to act upon the growing feelings he has towards his best friend; and he finally asks her out on a date! I don’t expect much more to happen other than them actually having dinner and engaging in casual, comfortable, friendly conversation, but by asking Amanda out to dinner, Lee is accomplishing two goals: first, he’s taking a leap of faith, being vulnerable and exposed, and acting on his feelings (which he is normally very careful not to do) and second, he is putting Amanda on notice that he’s interested … and that the possibility of more than a friendship actually does exist. 💕

    This is a huge turning point in the show, IMHO. We’ve known of Amanda’s affection for and trust in Lee pretty early on in the show. But, what has not been so clear is Lee’s connection to her. Does he admire her? Is he annoyed by her? Does he respect her? Does he even like her? Does he finds her attractive? Does he consider her out of his league? Would he rather have never known her? Or, can he not live without her? I think he has felt one of these emotions at some time or another during the last two seasons, so this ask is HUGE for him/them, which is why Amanda responses the way she does. He’s confirming for her that he/they have turned a corner to … well … she doesn’t know yet … but it’s somewhere MUCH better than before! ❤️

    I also don’t believe that Lee ever had insomnia! ☺️ I think he said that for Amanda’s benefit because he didn’t want to admit, and didn’t’ want her to know, that he was seeing someone. I truly believe that he had spent the last four night with Leslie, not sleeping together, which I’m sure did happen at least once (this is Lee Stetson we’re talking about). It’s plausible that he was also attending the events she was working at and staying out all night, which is why he was worn out and disheveled.

    I think Lee thought of Leslie as a distraction (after all he did say, ” who said I have a new girlfriend.) I don’t think he saw her that way yet.

    I believe that for some time now, Lee has been trying to sort out his feelings for Amanda. (Remember in Stemwinder, Part 1, when Lee told Amanda that he loved her … he said he had for a “very, very (notice there are 2 of them) long time.” I’m not suggesting that he felt that way here, but just pointing out that his feelings for her didn’t just happen overnight).

    And then Leslie came along, and he hoped she would provide a distraction from his exploration, which I’m sure he welcomed since we know our guy doesn’t do personal feelings well. lol

    I actually don’t think Lee pursued Leslie; I think she pursued him. And, because she reminded him of Amanda, without the complication of being Amanda, he just followed along, maybe hoping to get back to business as usual (hint, hint). 😉 But, after that confrontation at his apartment, he finally realized that it wasn’t possible anymore … so he decided to act on his feelings by taking that step towards Amanda.

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    • WELCOME! WELCOME!!!! So nice when a fellow SMK fan finds this blog. A very interesting comment that you thought Leslie pursued Lee. I could see that happening. I will agree to disagree with you whether he and Leslie slept together (this blog is great because there are so many different opinions!) because my poor little brain figures that if Lee hadn’t slept with Leslie, he didn’t consider her a girlfriend and then he wouldn’t be lying to Amanda. But that is just me, we all have different thoughts on this.
      (And just a heads up. we are trying really hard not to refer to future episodes. I have to keep reminding myself of this, but it is fun to pretend I am seeing this episode for the first time.)

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      • Thanks Cindy and sorry for the spoiler! 😁 I really tried to be careful not to do that but I guess the more I wrote, the less I remembered! Looking forward to more discussion.

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        • Gah!!! I meant to come back and welcome you iheartsmk! 🙂

          So glad you found your way here!!!

          No worries re the spoiler – it takes a little getting use to 🙂

          It can be especially tricky when staring directly at the goodness that is Lee Stetson 🙂 Sooo we help each other to stay in the moment and not look forward – there’s strength in numbers!! 🙂
          There’s a lovely bunch of smk fans here… hope you enjoy the show with us as the story unfolds! 🙂

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    • Hey, welcome along iheartsmk. Very interesting analysis. Please keep contributing to Iwsod’s blog as we’d love to hear more of your insights.
      I still think Lee didn’t sleep with Leslie in what must be relatively early in their acquaintance as he was looking to make this relationship different than his previous encounters, and for other reasons. There is a thread over at Ned’s to discuss this particular topic – http://nedlindgers.proboards.com/thread/76/lee-leslie so feel free to pitch in more comments over there.

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      • Thanks kiwismh for the referral to Ned’s. Very interesting discussion. After reading your comments on that site, I can definitely understand your point of view.

        I have become so intrigued by this topic that I decided to enlist a male opinion … so I consulted my husband. 😜 His response … “way to much thinking for a guy!” Lol. When I asked him about the dress, he said … “It’s more likely that he (Lee) wanted to get her (Leslie) a gift, didn’t know what to get, remembered Amanda’s dress and decided that one would do, period!” Lol. 😊 Interesting perspective. Do you think he’s right … that a guy wouldn’t put that much thought into it? Has anyone else sought out the male perspective?

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        • But wouldn’t it been easier just to get a bracelet, or a necklace, some flowers, a scarf even? 🙂 Dresses can be tricky – what size, what style, what material, what colour, will the cut and drape flatter? So many factors to consider and way too much room for error for the average male. 😉 But then, Lee Stetson isn’t average. Of course, he new the look he was going for, i.e. Amanda’s dress just without Amanda in it.

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        • Welcome iheartsmk! Glad someone is practical here. LOL! Never thought to ask my husband but with your reminder that we have resources readily available, duh, I asked him about buying a dress for a girlfriend. He went into the whole, “Are you nuts, you’re kidding right??!” tirade: “If you bought a size too small, she’d be offended and if you bought it too big she’d be equally insulted. A guy would be nuts to even think of buying a woman a dress!” Oh dear, hubbie just yelled from the other room that a truly smart man would take a woman shopping and let her pick it out! ROFL!

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        • Too funny! I flashed back to when I dated a guy and he and his brother went Christmas shopping together and bought me and his brother’s girlfriend the exact same things that the salesclerk suggested 🙂 Maybe we are over thinking this.
          Here is a gem by Dave Barry that might provide some illumination.
          http://www.unige.ch/~gander/california/relation.html

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          • Ha Hah Cindy! Such a guy thing to be so clueless. And yeah, Dave Barry, one of my favorite guys 😉

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          • lol! I like Dave Barry, too, and this is a good one. 😀

            I’ve had the sense that a large part of Lee’s thought processes regarding Amanda go like this:

            Is Amanda okay?
            1. If yes: Everything is fine and wonderful.
            2. If no: What do I need to do/arrange/negotiate and/or who do I need to interrogate/threaten/apprehend/beat up/kill to make sure that Amanda is okay? (Return to original question after action phase is complete.)

            I think Lee’s primary focus on Amanda’s physical safety explains part of what was going on in the scene after they talk to Leslie. Amanda is steamed over Lee’s behavior and worrying about his new relationship, but Lee’s main thought is to send Amanda home where she will be safe. And we’re like the women in the Dave Barry article, still analyzing Lee’s intentions, but never really tiring of it. 😉

            And if I end up doing that filler fic, this will probably go in it somewhere. lol!

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        • It is far fetched that a man would buy a woman a dress, although my husband bought me clothes for Christmas (not a dress) while we were still dating, but that is what the show gave us. It is just that “too much thought for a man” thing that makes it work, though. He did it and if he had thought about as deeply as we are he probably wouldn’t have. But he did and so I conclude that his sun conscious is screaming a him, he just isn’t good at listening to it. He gets better at hearing it by the end of that episode though, in fact I think his subconscious has screamed loud enough that maybe it is through and it is all up to his pre-conscious and conscious brains now.

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        • Just had to respond to your dress comment- My husband (then boyfriend) bought me a dress & took me to New York to see a Broadway Play as a surprise. So it is possible that Lee was really trying to make things more serious than they were in his heart with this grand romantic gesture. At this point, I think he feels like if he just tried hard enough he could make Leslie work, and when he sees her in the dress, he realizes that you can’t force things that way.

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    • Welcome, iheartsmk! I agree it is so much fun when a new person joins us here. And I love it when we all have different ideas because then we have more to talk about and comment on. So glad you shared your two cents, you can make it four or 10 or 100 cents as far as I am concerned, the more the merrier!

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    • Welcome, iheartsmk! Sorry I’m late to the welcome wagon party! I enjoyed reading your comment and hope you’ll join us for more of this walk!

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  6. I’m not sure where everything came down on the date/not a date; apology/not an apology discussion regarding Lee’s intent for dinner. For some reason this discussion came into my head when there was an incident at school today and when one student was told to apologize they just gave that quick “sorry” reply and I had to go with the “Nope, try it again” route to get a more sincere response.

    For some of the immaturity Lee still harbors he has had some growth in areas and I think that apologies are one of them. In OOADP Lee tried to sincerely apologize to Amanda for her being put through all this drama and he felt truly guilty and sorry for all of it. Of course, the real Amanda didn’t get to hear it, but he made the effort. And then in BO of course we have that huge apology for the slap and he wouldn’t let Amanda let him off the hook.

    So while these may have been apologies based on the professional job at hand, Lee was open, up front, and honest in his apology and that he was apologizing. I think that he has progressed enough that if the dinner was just about an apology he would have indicated so at the time. It may have been a part of it and maybe he indicated so when they went out. Sometimes I wish we could have gotten to see some of these off camera moments. Oh well, we journey on!

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    • Very interesting, Valerie. I think you make a good point. I still see this as more of an apology dinner than a date though, so I feel the need to justify that. In TAD, Lee apologizes with dinner. Arguably he has come a long way since then, but I see similarities in those two episodes in terms of how Lee hurt Amanda that make me think this still may be an apology. In BO, that was just so over the top that even dense-Lee knew he had to make such a sincere apology it almost doesn’t count in this tally.

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      • Yeah, I don’t see it as a date either. I guess I just see it as trying to reconnect and get that closeness back that they had going and get back on familiar friendly ground. I’m sure that an apology was inherent in there somewhere.

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      • “I think that he has progressed enough that if the dinner was just about an apology he would have indicated so at the time.” I do think that the perceived motivation for the dinner was an apology, I do not think that Lee was initiating a romantic dating relationship with Amanda at this point. However, I do think that the key to this apparent back sliding in Lee’s ability to come out and say “sorry” is based in your sentence that I quoted, Valerie. The problem here for Lee is that even though both he and Amanda want to deal with this on the basis of their friendship and the need that they feel to affirm it, but it really is more complicated than that, isn’t it. Both Lee and Amanda have been even more aware of complexities in the feelings and attachment that they have to one another through the events that took place during this episode. I do think that they will try, at the moment, to walk into this next stage as friends, but I do think they know it isn’t that simple. Lee doesn’t deal well with that kind of knowledge, so even his newly acquired apology skills are a bit suspended at the moment, I think.

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    • I think I’m in the minority (possibly entirely by myself) in still thinking the dinner is a date. I don’t see a date as having to include any romantic aspect, but if there is the potential for romance in the future (whether the two people are cognisant of that or not), then I consider it a date.
      Scary though it still is for him, I definitely think Lee is now open to the possibility of more than friendship with Amanda in the future.
      Amanda is not taking future romance as a given at the moment, but I see in her reaction to Lee when he asked and explained that Leslie would be taking herself to the embassy party, that she too realises that Lee’s invitation is about more than just their friendship or an apology.
      I think they are both going to this dinner realising that it isn’t about romance yet (and might possibly never be) but it is more than about friendship or an apology.

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      • After thinking it over, I’ve decided that it’s a date, too. Lee’s main intention might have been to make up for the way he’s treated Amanda lately, but it’s also about fostering their relationship. The most important point, I think, is that Lee has realized that his relationship with Amanda is important to him and that he needs and wants to spend more time and effort on it. I love that smile he has when Amanda accepts his invitation. He just looks overjoyed that she wants to be with him. 😀

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      • I’m still with you. I think it’s a date for all the reasons you say here….

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      • Me four 🙂 It feels like that in between space, not quite a stated romantic date but more than a meal with a friend.

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      • Hey kiwismh…I’ve been mulling your comment on and off all day today. And not that I’m trying to convince anyone to change their opinion, because I’m not, I wanted to write some more just because JWWM is the place I can post my SMK thoughts ad nauseum and people might read and write back. So with that, here’s what I kept coming back to:

        I was always sort of bothered, intrigued, etc as to why Lee laughed the way he did at the very end of the tag. Aside from the Chiclet teeth look, it seems to say something to me. I think it says relief. I think Lee is finally done denying that Amanda is valuable to him and that he actually likes being with her and working with her. Gone is the teasing and immature behavior of S1 and S2. So now that he’s actually realized this, his offer to dine together is his way of saying this to Amanda. So maybe I don’t see it so much as an apology in total, but one of apology and friendship. His relief is that Amanda accepts his invitation and seems to be very happy about it and when she says “not by a half” she is also revealing something to him – she also likes to spend time with him and wants to be his friend. She’s been trying to be Lee’s friend since the beginning with her “Do you have plans for Thanksgiving?” From here on out there is no need to pretend that they don’t like each other as friends and like spending time together outside of work.

        Based on how you define a date: **if there is the potential for romance in the future (whether the two people are cognisant of that or not), then I consider it a date, ** then I could agree with you. I don’t call it a date because I define it differently, involving the desire for a good night kiss and all. I don’t see that desire in Lee yet, so for me it’s not a date. I see the desire in Amanda, but it is tucked away very firmly that she can control herself and not go there.

        p.s. The idea of Lee being done with denial is one I picked up from Morley. At least I think it was Morley. There are probably others who said it too – so credit to them as well. I didn’t come up with it.

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        • Yes, I agree with you about them both being totally okay with expressing their friendship in out of work, personal time.
          However, I still class this as a date as I think it must have crossed both their minds that things could get closer between them in the future. Neither of them are assuming that at the moment – it is definitely too soon to start acting on any such thoughts. But putting myself in Amanda or Lee’s shoes, I would definitely be thinking at least a little about where this could all lead. How could such thoughts not cross their minds? These thoughts flit across our brains without any encouragement from us, at least they do for me.

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          • I see what you’re saying here, kiwismh. I do wonder what thoughts have crossed their minds. I mean real, conscious thoughts. Yes, they’ve grown very close since TFT and the changes in Lee seem to be coming like rapid-fire. I guess I think that Lee is still not really ready to even think about Amanda as a romantic interest because of the whole kids, mother-in-law, house in the suburbs issue. There’s a wall in his brain that doesn’t let his consciousness go there. I don’t think he was thinking about Amanda or considering her when he started dating Leslie, as in it being a choice – pursue a relationship with Leslie or Amanda. I think I’m coming to a decision for myself when I think that wall in Lee’s brain vanished. This ‘new’ S3 episode order we’re using has helped to clarify that in my mind. I do think that Amanda has had thoughts of a future with Lee in her mind from the very beginning, but has since completely dismissed them – she is very self-disciplined.

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        • I’m on board with all this BJo! I see it the same way..

          I think most of us see Lee and Amanda as being in a similar place – but sounds like some of us define ‘dating’ very differently!!! soooo if anyone refers to dating in future? best explain what you mean by it haa!! 🙂

          For me, Lee is starting to explore his feeling for Amanda – but he is only just starting.. I think he doesn’t yet grasp the full extent of those feelings he has..

          Gaahhhh gotta run!!! I’ve had a really busy week but the weekend should leave me with time to catch up here everyone! Hope you are all well and enjoying lovesmk’s weasel banners along with all the fab comments and a great episode!!

          byeeee!!!

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          • I’m beginning to think we’ve done this “dating” definition thing to death. Dating sounds very casual to me – it is an Americanism that wasn’t in common use in NZ when I was in my teens and 20’s.
            I understand that people can date more than one person at a time – i.e. the way Lee used to. It’s not as significant as actual courtship, which I see as a man (it’s usually the guy who does the courting I guess) confining himself to just seeing one woman exclusively. I think this is where Lee is at now, if we are to assume that Leslie isn’t in his life anymore. She was written out quicker than intended for a reason, which I think is that they realised that an ongoing relationship with Leslie beyond OTL just doesn’t fit with where Lee is at by the end of OTL and would be injurious to his personal friendship with Amanda.
            Lee has known for some time that he isn’t interested in the sort of women he had in his black books, he probably by now knows that Leslie was a mistake and I think has gone some way to acknowledging that she was merely a replacement for Amanda.
            So, while he may not be thinking of bringing any romance into his and Amanda’s personal relationship right now, I think Lee has acknowledged that he does need to scratch this itch – he knows he needs to get to know Amanda on a more personal basis to find out of their could be more between them.

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            • Kiwismh, you may be right about having doing the “dating definition to death” thing… but, I have one comment I wanted to make. I guess I make this progression for Lee and Amanda happen very slowly in my SMK world. I actually take the presence of Leslie in some of the writers minds in a particular future episode as a clue as to how slowly Lee progresses. The thing that makes that doable for me is that Leslie isn’t really around, you see I have her travelling for the rest of the time I have them still “together.” I think she is in NYC during where we are in Weasel right now and I don’t think Lee has actually seen her since that fiasco of a surprise dinner with the black dress and the call from O’Keefe. I bet he is even beginning to forget to call her and when she calls he doesn’t have a lot of time to talk because his work and other “work related things” are taking so much of his time. I am sure he is being kind, but I am also sure he is beginning to ask himself why that steak and potatoes dinner with Amanda was so much more enjoyable than other dinners he has had lately. I do think a lot of his time is spent thinking about how “special” Amanda really is.
              So actually I think we have Lee in pretty much the same place. I just have him moving really slowly through things, like swimming through peanut butter.

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              • LOL swimming through peanut butter?!! whwhahaaaaa! I love it!!

                yeah some may see Lee’s lifting of his denial as the beginning of a process.. and others may see it as the final piece of the puzzle that Lee had to put together to see he is in love with Amanda..

                I go for your pace Morley.. I too see it as a slow process 🙂

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            • Kiwismh wrote:

              >I’m beginning to think we’ve done this “dating” definition thing to death.

              I think people can talk about it as much as they like – if people still want to discuss it go right ahead.
              I don’t mean this to come across as defensive- but I’ll just clarify to be sure I’m understood..
              I was commenting to let BJo know I agreed with her, not to change anyone’s mind – and to acknowledge people here define dating differently and that’s the way it is and that’s cool..
              So when we discuss ‘dating’ we may have a different idea in mind. Simple..
              I wasn’t looking to stimulate further discussion of it- but of course if anyone wants to discuss it further they are free to do so as much as they like..
              And Kiwismh, you are also free to finish your involvement with that discussion and move on to other goodies – it’s all good! 🙂

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              • Ah crap, I’m in the naughty corner…. again. 😉
                Sorry Iwsod.
                What I was getting at was that I don’t think I have the same understanding of what dating is as it isn’t a term that had any cultural relevance during my earlier years, so how I define it is really from what I have picked up from American shows, which could be a wrong interpretation.
                What I’ve picked up is that it is a casual thing that doesn’t necessarily imply any exclusivity or long-term intent, so I think this would easily describe Lee and Amanda’s “dating”. However, I do see Lee as starting to move into courtship territory. So for me perhaps the best way to describe it is that they are at a point between casual dating and active courtship.
                Morley said : “So actually I think we have Lee in pretty much the same place. I just have him moving really slowly through things, like swimming through peanut butter.”
                Agree, it’s just that I prefer smooth peanut butter – you can swim faster through that 😉 …or so I would imagine, I haven’t actually tried it myself…
                Geez, now I know I’m just going to dream about swimming through peanut butter tonight. Oh well, it will be a change from real estate nightmares. 😯

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                • All good kiwismh! 🙂

                  I think there are cultural differences in dating, and yeah some cultures don’t recognise it-so true!
                  Though, my impression is that within cultures there are different views- I’m thinking there are Americans here who see this differ between each other..so interesting!

                  I’m thinking I’ll revisit this idea maybe right through season 3 lol!
                  I’m curious to find out – when do I think they are ‘dating’?! [as I an defining it!] I think this will help me to clarify my own thinking..

                  But think away whatever you like everyone -it’s all good 🙂

                  Real Estate nightmares?!! Oh nooooo!! yeah Lee is a good nightmare cure huh!

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                • Just be sure to take a nice shower after your dip in the peanut butter… 😉

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                • Yup, I guess I have Lee in the chunky peanut butter for a while still. Maybe after a certain episode that we all love to watch repeatedly for eternity, it will be smooth peanut butter. Where do I get the analogies. The peanut butter was actually used in a NYC master dance class to illustrate a quality of movement that the teacher wanted from the dancers… I guess it works for Lee too… ;D

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            • Oh, one other thing… Courting! Great word, some would say it is old fashioned, but we use it in our home. I would define courting as dating with an end in mind. I think if a man was to court a woman, he would have a goal of marriage in mind. Not that it means the deal is sealed, but he would know the woman well enough already to know that she would be a good candidate for him, and he would also know that he was ready and in a position in life to marry. I guess I see dating as trying on different people,like clothes shopping, courting is a process to prepare for marriage with one specific individual. You have to know that person and yourself pretty well before you start that.
              I am not suggesting that you are saying that Lee is about to start courting Amanda or that he actually is, you can say that if you want to, I just though I would “define” what I think when I hear that word. For clarity sake.And because it is fun 😉

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              • Hey Morley! hope all your internet issues are behind you!

                I’m enjoying your ideas.. and just thought I’d add- I find this fun too! 🙂

                Courtship is a great word!! I am thinking we’ll be coming back to this concept of dating/courtship right through season 3.. the start of many fab discussions to come!!! 🙂

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  7. What’s with all the potato hate on this post??? As long as it’s not slathered in butter, sour cream and all that other stuff, why is a potato not considered healthy anymore? I get it if you’re diabetic, but I didn’t think a potato was considered unhealthy even nowadays.

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  8. Lee and Amanda look so casual here. I wonder if he picked her up and drove her over to see the Sullivan’s. Where’s the baby?

    I bet the new law is to set tougher penalties on corporations like Transoceanic who fish over the limit. Stiffer fines or the possibility of jail time may make them think twice about it.

    Love how Lee seems a little awkward here with Amanda. I do think this is the first time we’ve heard that Dotty plays cards in a club. I wonder if she really has a card club or if she’s off spying….tee hee.
    And good, ole reliable Amanda, she gives Lee an excuse to take back the invitation. Just in case he really didn’t mean it. I think she maybe isn’t sure at first the she wants him to mean it. It takes her by surprise.

    Why is Lee being bashful here…hmmm. I think it’s because he’s beaking new ground. He’s actually inviting her to dinner with no shop talk. On purpose. Not because they have time to talk on a stake-out. Instead they’ll be on a steak-out. LOL – I’m cracking myself up over that one! Oh dear…silly me. Back to business. I think he’s in uncharted territory here and is just not sure of himself. I think he knows he messed up with Amanda with the whole dress, I don’t have a girlfriend, go home thing. I also think he knows he’s really taken his friendship with Amanda for granted and has maybe neglected it a bit lately because he’s been distracted by Leslie. I think he’s realizing that he doesn’t like feeling disconnected from Amanda because of Leslie and he’s looking for a way to make things right and get reconnected with her in their friendship. Amanda is his work partner and work is very important to Lee. Amanda is very important to Lee and I think he is finally realizing that she is a great friend and work partner and he needs to really be in-step with her. I think he believes his recent actions caused a bit of friction between him and Amanda and that led her to go strike out on her own at Transoceanic. Lee does not want that friction between them. I think this dinner invitation is a first step toward healing that rift and really opening himself up to Amanda.

    Amanda’s reaction to Lee’s invitation, once he gets it all out is sweet. I think she is realizing that Lee must have been doing some thinking about things and noticing the change in their relationship. I think she sees this as Lee’s was of apologizing to her for all his faux pas on the case and that he wants to make it up to her.

    I know the first time I saw this scene I thought, “Finally!!” He finally loves her and is falling for her and he’s gonna kiss her in the next episode! Of course I was 15 and completely clueless. I don’t see it that way at all now. I see this as a gesture of friendship (not work) and partnership (work). The steak, potato and wine seem more like a romantic dinner, but I don’t think it was meant that way. I think it was just probably something Lee liked to eat and it showed that he really was being sincere because that’s not a cheap meal. He seems to like champagne for his romantic dinners, doesn’t he?

    As far as where I see Amanda…hmmm…I think she’s had a bit of a wakeup call here when it comes to Lee. His choice in Leslie clearly tells her that he is changing his ways. Or at least changing the type of woman he’s now looking to be with. He’s growing up. I also think she may be realizing that even though she has buried the crush she had on him early on, she really does have feelings for him and wants him to change. I think Amanda is just surprised and pleased that Lee is finally maturing. And I like how you said it, iwsod – Amanda is on a watch, wait and see status…she isn’t jumping into anything, But just knowing that there might be a slight hope that Lee could someday be a man she could have a romantic relationship with is a nice feeling.

    Iwsod, I know why we didn’t see that part of the episode that’s missing. It’s because Lee was in the shower just letting the warm water run down his bod while he was trying to figure out how to fix things with Amanda. He was alone, standing there with his forehead on the shower wall, just trying to figure it out. I think WB knew that they couldn’t show us Lee in the shower. Although that would have been ‘some’ continuity if they had chosen this episode to do that since we got to sort of see Lee in the shower in Weekend!

    As far as Lee not going to the embassy thing with Leslie I’m not sure I totally agree with all of what you said. I like what you said, but I have a feeling that Lee and Leslie had a little chat after Lee was finished at TOI. I think Lee may have been honest and told her he wasn’t that thrilled she got the doorman to let her in to his apartment. I also think Leslie heard Lee and Amanda fighting in the hallway and she asked him some specific questions about his relationship with Amanda. I have a feeling that Leslie maybe might have given Lee the dress back or told him it was itchy or something and told him she wasn’t going to wear it. I don’t think Lee told her that he saw a similar dress on Amanda or anything, don’t think he’s thaaat dense.

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    • Oh, thank you so much for giving me that mental image of Lee in the shower. Now how am I supposed to get any work done today! 😉
      That was a very wicked thing to do BJo.

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      • fans self * Soap bubbles, you forgot the soap bubbles in the not-shown-shower scene.

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      • The view is more sensational without the soap bubbles. 😉
        Must concentrate on work…muuuust concentrate. 😯
        Nope, still thinking about the view. Oh well, just gonna have to live with it today. Must get some work done. Will check back later. 😀

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    • First I have to say “Yay!!! Bjo is here. I always know because my inbox is FULL of JWWM posts!!!

      I really liked that you spent a whole paragraph on what might be going on with Amanda. Why do I always think about what Lee is thinking first? (don’t answer that, I know why ;)) But yes, Amanda had some epiphanies of her own, didn’t she. Why did she run after O’ Keefe like that ? Why did she get so irritated about Leslie as if she was J…? Why is it ok for her mother to go off and have a romantic weekend, and why does it bother her that Lee chose a normal woman, or that the only Hague she knows is the secretary of state? Good questions, Amanda. I bet she had some insomnia that night too.
      Umm…. and I likes you r deleted scene idea. Great continuity…. ahem 😉

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  9. I am thinking Lee and Amanda have swapped places now.
    After BO, and during MBF and VM I think Amanda began to sub-consciously (then maybe even semi-consciously) peg Lee as more than just a friend. I’ve already suggested in a previous post that her instinct driven, inner woman has been at work behind the scenes pegging Lee as a potential life partner.
    At the beginning of OTL she seemed happy and excited with life, and I think part of this was that she had sensed a real change in Lee in terms of his maturity and stability. By the end of OTL she is still happy and excited, but there is an uncertainty about him that wasn’t there that wasn’t present at the beginning of the episode.
    To me, Lee has made a big leap during this episode. He finally got past the denial to acknowledgement and acceptance that he is interested in Amanda beyond their professional friendship. So Lee is now occupying the head space Amanda was previously in – he is wondering if they could become more than just good friends as time goes on.
    Amanda is still interested in him but after he unexpectedly zig-zagged off with another woman, albeit briefly, she is no doubt wondering if he’s perhaps not as stable and mature as she had thought. Maybe Lee needs to prove himself to Amanda again before she will allow herself consider a closer personal relationship with him. I think she’s more than happy to allow him this opportunity. Another good reason for the “dates”. 😉

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  10. Oh my what a lot of lovely comments to read through 🙂
    I have been really short on time so missed most of the fun.
    My 10 cents…..I don’t see it as an outright apology more a reaffirming of friendship and appreciating getting more personal is beneficial to their relationship. Is it a date? Hmmmm sort of. Bottle of wine and instructions of no shop talk hint at it but given the current state of their relationship it’s not romantic. It’s more like two friends choosing to make plans together and enjoy the change in the dynamic of their relationship. Just my opinion 😉
    However I don’t get the whole baked potato with steak thing…..baked spuds are things we might have for lunch here not as an accompaniment to a fine bit of beef 😉
    Oh and I really really really loathe Amanda’s jumper……

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    • Yeah, steak and potato in one meal is pretty heavy going but, ahem, Americans do seem to have big appetites. (Sorry guys, we love you but you do rather seem to consume a great deal. I know this is a gross generalisation which may be a little unfair as I am sure many of you keep fit and eat healthy portions, but as a generalisation Americans do come across to the rest of the world as big consumers of everything… not just food.)
      Maybe a small baked potato each, or a shared one?
      Meat and potatoes together did used to be common in NZ but these days people usually go for a lighter vegetable accompaniment (e.g. brocolli, carrots, etc, or salad) if they are having meat. Meat and potatoes was okay back in the day when you were off out to plough a field or two after lunch, but as an evening meal and given the relative lack of physical exercise most people get these days, it seems a bit heavy.
      The red wine should help wash it all down though, not to mention its relaxing properties, in moderation of course. 😉

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      • Haha, the meat-and-potatoes meal is still alive and well in the Midwestern US, especially among farming folks. A baked potato has only 100 calories before it gets slathered with butter and sour cream. A baked potato also adds a touch of class to a meal, because it takes time in a world where time is increasingly valuable (Purists insist that a baked potato must be oven baked, not microwaved). It is immune to the suspicion that it came powdered in a box. Possibly the potato is undergoing a resurgence because of the large numbers of people going gluten-free; a potato can take the place of a dinner roll with the steak-and-vegetable meal. Now that seasonal vegetables are transported long distances, meat-and-potatoes folks have learned to add a vegetable on the side, or even put it in the potato, such as potatoes with kale, roasted root vegetables, or mashed potatoes and cauliflower. Maybe, since this tag wasn’t in the orginal script, BB was allowed to ad-lib his idea of a nice meal? Many of Lee and Amanda’s defining moments are accompanied by food, no?

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        • I don’t eat meat and don’t eat much potato but I do like a baked potato for dinner in winter time. I wrap it in foil and bake it in the wood-burner. (Don’t like microwaves.) A mid sized baked potato drizzled with a good quality cold pressed olive oil and a little rock salt and cracked pepper is plenty for me for dinner as I eat well at breakfast and lunch. I’m gluten and dairy intolerant, and I don’t eat meat, so love my veges. 🙂
          Back in the 80’s when I first watched this Lee’s meat and potato meal idea wouldn’t have surprised me. But now it seems a really heavy meal to be having in the evening.

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  11. So for this post I am going to write my comments before I read everybody else’s.

    I think the scene that I would have liked to see before this tag would be the scene at the Agency as they debriefed. Maybe Amanda spoke to Billy alone and was allowed to go home. And then Francine gave her account, or Billy read her report and then Lee gave his. Maybe there would be a discrepancy between what Francine said happened and what Lee said happened. Maybe Francine would mention how Lee had acted and Billy would have noted Amanda’s subdued tone as well. He would then have a little Billy like talk with Lee, similar to the one at the beginning of the episode (take care of her). But Lee wouldn’t have needed it, because he was already realizing
    That he needed to fix things.
    I think Lee knows that his relationship with Amanda is the most important one in his life. If his friendship with Amanda is off, he is off. I think he has learned that. I don’t think he knows why and I am not convinced that he has connected all the dots yet. But I do think he knows that whatever he was trying to create with Leslie needs to take a back seat, while he makes things right with Amanda. I think he was completely aware of what he had done by the time he hits the hay that night. I also bet he didn’t fall asleep until he had a plan. He called Leslie in the morning to tell her that something had come up with work and he was very sorry but he was going to have to miss the embassy party. He stopped by the store to pick up steak and potatoes and a bottle of wine. And then he went to pick up Amanda and take her to the boat basin.
    I do not get the vibe that this is the beginning of romance. I think this is an apology. I do think it is more though. I think this is Lee letting Amanda know how much he values their friendship, he values it very highly. I am not sure if he is ready or willing or able to say he values it more than the possibility of something real with Leslie. I think as he honestly has both (unlike during this episode when he tried to keep the two in different realities) he will quickly realize how it is for him. But here in this moment it is all about fixing his wrongs, all of them that we mentioned during this whole episode, and acknowledging that his friendship with Amanda is indeed the very special and important thing that they have, over the past years, discovered it to be.

    In my SMK world I don’t see Lee ending things with Leslie, yet. I do however see Leslie having to return to NYC the next day, so he doesn’t get to see her again for a few weeks. In my mind, when Lee does decide to end it, he will want to do it right. In person and in a respectful manner, both for Leslie’ sake and because it is another step to becoming that man that he is wanting to be (maybe by that time, it will also be that he is wanting to become that man for Amanda as well?).

    I think Lee and Amanda must have thoroughly enjoyed the evening and their return to the joy of their friendship. Amanda would easily forgive Lee and this dinner offer is a great step to rebuilding her trust in him. I do think it would be easy for Amanda to trust Lee as her friend again. Not sure if she is ready to begin to trust him with her heart. I think he focus is on the friendship as well. But his choice to change his plans in order to reaffirm their friendship must speak very loudly to her. You can see it in her smile at the end of this scene. That friendship is something that she waited patiently for all through season 1 and into season 2. She thought she had it at the end of season 2 and in Brand. But now she knows she has it.

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    • I really like this — I knew you ladies would rescue the tag for me. So I am going to figure a) there were several important missing scenes we didn’t get to see and b) the dinner is an apology for being such a jerk and a poor friend and this is a way to start to make amends and Amanda is going to take it in that spirit rather than it being a date. I agree with you, Morley, I don’t think Lee has connected the dots yet, but he does realize his friendship with Amanda is really important. Not to dis anyone who sees this as the start of Lee romancing Amanda (ain’t this blog grand?), but like I mentioned before, this tag always bugged me and now I have a different way of viewing it.

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    • I’ve loved hearing everyone’s take on this tag, on this episode and where Lee and Amanda are at now!!

      A few different ideas! Will great to hear how this alters how we view future events!! Keep your thoughts coming!!!

      Oh and Morley – Like like!! I’m agreeing with everything you wrote here! lol!
      Bring on the next stage!!!! whoooooo

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    • Well said, Morley. See, this is exactly why you’re the writer and I’m the beta. LOL!

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  12. So where do I see Lee & Amanda at now? Lee’s insomnia I’ve addressed before as “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.” I see Lee as having cancelled his date with Leslie “due to work,” and he will politely let her down. I don’t see him as dating her again, I think he will probably have a phone conversation or two before ending the relationship. What he is doing is looking toward the possibility of moving his and Amanda’s relationship forward “to see where it goes,” always keeping in mind that moving too far, too fast could lose what has become so important to him. Now, here he is, shyly asking for a date, yes a date, with Amanda. He knows that she is a very special friend, but he hasn’t admitted to himself what he soon will. He’s not thinking love, just deeping what they have.

    So much has changed for Amanda over the past couple of days, that none of it has sunk in. I do think she loves Lee, just hasn’t allowed that to grow into full romantic love, yet. She’s watched his relationships with women change, but she’s hesitant to say he’s changed completely. For so long, she has been the only one to see the real Lee, and she knows this. At this point, she’s not sure if Leslie has seen the real Lee or not, because this relationship seemed so different – thus, the threat she felt. Amanda is simply happy to know that their relationship is back to familiar ground, but she’s cautious.

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    • You think Lee is asking for a date? Who else sees it this way?

      this might sound a bit strange, but.. how do you define a date? everyone??

      I may not define or identify it in the same way.. sooo I’m curious to hear what you guys think about this!

      Those who don’t see this as a date request – what’s missing here for you in the Tag? that you don’t call this a date?

      Ahhh Debilyn.. I enjoyed your comments… would love to say more but what I want to say relates to future events.. so for now.. I’ll leave this one hanging…

      But I would love to hear everyone’s thoughts on ‘date’ !!! I won’t say what I think just yet I’ll hear what you guys think first 🙂 for once.. lol!!

      byeee for now!

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      • I have been thinking about what people have been saying about this dinner just being an apology. Then I read your comment Iwsod and thought I would share my ideas.
        Part of it is an apology, but mostly it’s he wants to move their friendship into the realms of the purely personal and see what comes of it. He isn’t afraid of this anymore. He’s probably still somewhat nervous about where this all might end and whether he’s ready for that (i.e. long term commitment, family, etc), but I think this new mature Lee is now ready to open himself to that possibility. Whether his friendship with Amanda ever becomes more intimate or not, he knows the only way to resolve the turmoil he has been experiencing is to explore this path with Amanda otherwise he will always wonder “what if”.
        Oh yeah, it’s a date. Definitely in Lee’s mind at least, and I think he was absolutely intent on conveying this to her – blowing off his night with Leslie, dinner, alone together, no shop talk – he’s making sure she knows this is a date all-right.
        I’m not saying he’s out to romance her anytime soon but I think Lee has rapidly moved on from denial to acknowledgement and acceptance that he has deeper feelings for her than just friendship.
        Denial of his feelings he’s been in for ages. Acknowledgement and acceptance have just tumbled into his consciousness, with acceptance right on the heels of acknowledgement.
        Lee knows that he just doesn’t feel the same about Leslie as he does about Amanda. Right now he knows he has deep personal feelings and an intense physical attraction (yes, I think by now he’s figured out why the dress was special 😉 ) for Amanda but he’s not ready to acknowledge love yet. He’s matured enough to know that if they spend more personal time together, he will eventually know whether what they have is just a really close friendship or something more. But he’s also determined not to rush into anything that might mar their friendship.
        And remember, he still isn’t 100% sure Amanda wants to go down the path of something more with him. He must have realised on reflection that her recent bouts of irritation and anger stemmed in no small part from jealousy of Lee’s relationship with Leslie, so he’s got some idea she’s interested in him on a more personal level but he can’t assume anything at this stage.
        This is a date and I think I would categorise this as the beginning of Lee’s courtship of Amanda.

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        • I agree with you kiwismh… I never thought of the dinner invitation as an apology or at least if it’s an apology that’s only a side purpose. It’s a date. I think it’s a conscious decision on Lee’s part to advance his relationship with Amanda to at least a personal level. Not that they don’t have a personal relationship now but I mean to have a personal relationship that doesn’t involve some kind of work situation. Even the New Year Eve he talks about (25 years later and I’m still ticked they didn’t show that) was a work event. He wants more. That’s dating. How much more he might want I don’t think he’s ready to face yet.

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          • Hiya! Is anyone thinking the invite was an apology only? Maybe I’m wrong.. but I was thinking if people did see an apology in this, that was not all it was.. but I may have misunderstood – quite possible 🙂

            I am thinking, some think there is an apology in it, some do not think so.. there is that area of difference,

            but additionally, there is also the question of whether or not this is a ‘date’ – this is what I was asking you guys about.. because the criteria for when it becomes a date may vary between us.. so I don’t assume everything defines date the same way I do.. infact I’m pretty sure that many will not see it the same way as me 🙂

            I think there can be a number of motives or purposes in one action. Lee skipping the Russian embassy party to be with Amanda can be for more than one reason.

            I agree with you Allofakind, Lee does want more with Amanda than just a work relationship or work based friendship, or even a friendship on the pretence of work – Lee has moved beyond this I agree.. but how far? and on to what sounds like where we see things slightly differently.

            He wants more? I don’t necessarily see this as dating. and.. this goes back to the questions I threw out there – I’m really curious to see what you guys make of this – what’s the difference between a personal friendship outside of work and dating?? There is a difference, isn’t there? or do you think not?? how are you seeing that?

            I have a few ideas that I’ll share but I’m really curious to hear what you guys think if you would like to share 🙂 I find this fascinating because we are just now beginning to explore this aspect of Lee and Amanda’s journey and we will be building on this, story wise, from now on.. 🙂

            Bye for now!

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            • Um, I am thinking it was an apology and not a date. But I am half witted and exhausted right now and can’t put the words together to explain. I fully intend to do so in the morning. But I thought I would put my two cents in now. Funny how we all saw so much similar during the episode and then here in the end we can see it so differently. I wonder how much of it has to do with a different episode order? I think it is great though, because now we can discuss more. I will discuss more in a few hours… Sorry about that.

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              • No Hurry.. if OTL comments are still cracking, I’ll go slow a bit on publishing the next dancing weasel post 🙂

                No stressing Morley – SMK is for fun !! 🙂 [whooo I’m going to read your latest vignettes tonight as a reward for getting my work done this afternoon!]

                I’m not surprised by people seeing the tag differently – because there is such a huge leap between what happened before the tag and what happens in the tag – it is only natural that each of us will attempt to ‘fill the gap’ – and this colours how we view the tag.. and probably (even though we don’t look forward here!!) where we see and Amanda overall on their journey is going to affect how you see this too.

                friendship.. dating but not calling it dating.. dating.. interesting stuff! 🙂

                Okay I gotta run! I’ll check in later.bye guys!

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              • Count me in the “it’s an apology” camp even though Dense-Male-Syndrome poster boy knows he likes spending time with Amanda and knows he feels better when he is with her and she is happy but hasn’t figured out what that all means.
                When i first saw this episode, I thought he was asking Amanda out for a date (as in – I want to get to know you better because I have acknowledged to myself that I am having all the romantic feelings towards you) and it irked me mightily for reasons I have already stated. But since I have watched the episodes coming after this one (don’t worry, no spoilers!) I now believe that he doesn’t consciously consider this a date and knowing what’s coming up I don’t think Amanda does either.

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                • I am trying to be good for once (Iwsod take note) and not think of what is coming up. Having said that, the re-worked episode order makes a great deal more sense to me when I think of what is coming up, and I don’t see this being a date as being problematic. In fact, if anything, it makes even more sense. But we shall discuss more as the posts proceed.
                  Just from my own life experience – unattached man and woman, roughly the same age, not blood related, having dinner together = date. 🙂

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                  • Hey!!!! Well done Kiwismh!! 🙂 thank you!

                    There are things coming which influence my view of the tag too.. but aside from that.. just looking at the tag on it’s own? I didn’t get a romantic vibe from it. I actually looked up my original thoughts on OTL years and years ago.. watching the show in airing order and I was baffled by the tag – and why did there feel like there was no romance? Now? with this order.. it’s fitting well for me 🙂 Morley’s magic order so far is workin!

                    I’ll definitely revisit this.. and I’ll look forward to hearing how your take on the tag affects your take on future events! 🙂

                    Ahhh.. thanks for your explanation of what you see as a date kiwismh. I think your definition is much broader than mine 🙂
                    What’s everyone else thinking?

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                    • Well, I was being a bit tongue in cheek with my definition of date but realistically most of the time, this would be classified as a date.

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                  • I agree here too…. it’s a date. While I might not go as far as to say two unattached people not blood related having dinner is a date, I would say that unattached man and woman, roughly the same age, not blood related, and the man asks the woman to have dinner (steak and wine), and makes a point of saying ‘just the two of us’ and has the express purpose of being with that woman outside of their regular relationship… that’s a date. Actually to me all the asking about her plans for the evening to me signals ‘date’ too. He was very nervous about asking her and he wanted to be sure she was available before he asked so she didn’t have to say no.

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                    • Yep, I agree. It’s not just that they are unattached and going to dinner together. There are other clues in the way both were acting and responding to each other that suggest they are both thinking “date” – maybe Lee is thinking “I’m asking Amanda on a date”, and maybe Amanda is thinking “Wow, is he asking me on a date?” 🙂
                      It just occurred to me how nutty this is – that we’re seriously debating whether two fictional characters from an obscure (to most people) TV show from 30 years ago are going on a date or not. Oh well, at least I’m not alone in my insanity.

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                    • I actually read his questions about her schedule to be in response to her comments about “go home, Amanda…” I think he was trying to show that he does respect her lifestyle and her time commitments outside of work. Not just assuming that she is free and at his beckon call, or dismissal.

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                  • I am looking forward to how you view the next few episodes. Funny because I find viewing it as a date problematic and not viewing it as so makes more sense. It really is fun the way we can watch the same thing and see it so differently. This will be fun!!!

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                • Agree 100% with this Cindy 🙂 looking forward to discussing this in light of further events! 🙂

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                • Ditto what Cindy said. I couldn’t have said it better myself. Even if I tried.

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              • OK, I have had some sleep, now to the date question.
                True between an unattached man and woman a dinner like this could be considered a date. But, between this particular man and woman I think both would be trying not to think of this as a date. First of all, Lee does not make it clear that he is unattached. It always bothered me that he didn’t say anything about not being in a relationship with Leslie any more. In fact his response to Amanda’s comment about the embassy party always bothered me when I wanted to perceive this as a date. His response about Leslie still leaves her very much in the picture. True it is a bit confusing that he backs out of his plans with Leslie to spend time with Amanda. But I now read this as that affirmation of how important his friendship with Amanda is. I also take it as an attempt by Lee to balance both, a girlfriend and his friend, Amanda.
                I think after his inability to be honest with Amanda about this new relationship in his life, and the way he treated her the night before concerning the case, he really needs to mend the broken places, I think he may be aware that he is rather desperate to and that is what is causing his nervousness. He has gotten angry and condescending in the past (Artful Dodger) and he felt bad about it then and a dinner fixed it. This time it is even worse because of their deeper friendship, and I think he does want her to know that he considers her a personal friend and not just a work related friend. He feels safe communicating that to her. His “alone” and “no shop talk for a change” is communicating that, yes, Amanda is more than a work friend and he is sorry for how he handled things earlier. It says to me that that camaraderie in the hall on the way up to his apartment is where he wants their friendship to be. Is seems to be a call for a do over, if the whole Leslie in the apartment thing hadn’t happened he would have made some food and they would have had time to shoot the breeze while they waited for the phone call. Maybe they would talk about college, or childhood memories.
                I think that due to their history together, it is going to take a bit more pointed clarity before either one, especially Amanda, is going to consider anything between the two of them a date. Lee is not going to mess with this all important friendship until he knows exactly what he wants and if he can live up to it, and Amanda is not going to put her hand in the cookie jar of romantic feelings until she knows it is ok to take a handful of cookies, instead of nibble on one. If this was a date now, it would create a lot of confusion and possible hurt and I think both of them will protect their friendship from that.
                Of course a year from now, they may look back and say, hey, that could have been considered our first date, boy were we deluded 😉

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                • Hey, like the idea that this is their first date but they won’t know it until later!

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                • First of all, morley, love this and I heartily agree. I think that considering what had just happened it’s a bit too soon for this to be a date. That would really call into question whether Lee felt anything at all for Leslie and would indicate that basically he was using her. I would think that Amanda would also be put off by the indication of it being a date considering what she had been seeing of Lee and then meeting Leslie. I don’t think she would have too high of an opinion of Lee if he could just change horses midstream like that and move on so quickly.

                  I do agree that it is an attempt to reconnect the bond they had been forging and trying to make that stronger. It kind of went off the rails a bit and I think they need to make sure the friendship is healed and intact before anything else. I think that even though it’s Amanda that if were going to be a date he would have indicated so.

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                  • YES! Another reason I am loving the new episode order.

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                  • Yes, Valerie, I think that is a good point about how it would be as if Lee had been using Leslie and neither Lee nor Amanda would be able to jump into dating each other if that had been true.
                    But I also like to think that Leslie was a blip on Lee’s radar, the he really never was able to have much depth of feeling for her, not because of who Leslie was, but because of how Lee really felt about Amanda unconsciously. I think a lot of the relationship with Leslie was basically a transference of his feelings for Amanda due to the wounds that Lee had in his life and how they affected his response to love. One does not often snap out of that. I do think he thought that he was really trying to have a relationship with Leslie though.

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                    • I agree that the feelings for Leslie weren’t that deep either. It still seemed a new relationship and there was hesitancy in there as well. I also agree about the transference of his feelings as well and that he was trying to have a relationship. I think it was his attempt at or the signs of some growth, but it was just with the wrong person. Or at least the wrong person for him.

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                    • Right, Valerie. Would you also agree that Lee hasn’t figured all that out yet, at the point of the tag? I just don’t see him having that clarity yet. I guess it is like the sky is getting a bit less dark, like at the very first sign of dawn but the sun hasn’t started to illumine the landscape yet…

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                    • Allofakind

                      I guess I’m still on the ‘dark side’ of thinking this is a date. I always imagined that his relationship with Leslie had been terminated by this point. I don’t know if it was Lee or Leslie or a combination but I don’t think he just cancelled his party at the Russian embassy. You don’t buy a woman a dress and then skip the party the dress was purchased for and still have that relationship. I don’t think that means he was using Leslie. To be using her he’d have to actively know he wanted to be with Amanda but was with Leslie because he didn’t want to deal with his feelings.

                      But the ‘is it a date’ part…I keep coming back to the way he asks her. Can you imagine him saying something like that to a male co-worker? When two friends want to get together outside work they say something like ‘hey want to grab a burger or get a drink?’. He specifically said ‘bottle of wine’ ‘just the two of us’. Those words may not mean ‘hey lets sleep together’ but they also don’t mean ‘grabbing dinner with my buddy’. Of course I could be wrong here since the last ‘first date’ I had was in 1991 and I was 22.

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                • Lee’s reaction when Amanda asks him about his date with Leslie says to me loud and clear that it is over with her. He isn’t tongue tied or changing the subject, he looks to me as if he is remembering with regret but also some relief, then he offers a clear explanation to Amanda that Leslie “won’t be lonely” and will be “working anyway.” Amanda knows that Lee had definite plans to go with Leslie to that party, she knows he even went as far as to give Leslie a dress to wear – until yesterday there was no way Lee Stetson was going to miss that party with Leslie.
                  Some time in the last 24 hours something has happened that has been a game changer for Lee Stetson. I think the events of the last few days have finally resulted in him acknowledging and accepting that it is Amanda that interests him, not Leslie.
                  I don’t see Lee (or Amanda) continuing to have small degrees of realisation – that’s not how real life works. There are major progressions at certain points, especially once you get to the point of consciously realising or acknowledging something, and this is one of them for Lee Stetson.
                  Amanda at this point is happy to go with him on this date but I see her as being less certain about the meaning of this dinner, and maybe a little nervous about the fantasy possibly becoming a reality somewhere down the track. She probably realises from Lee’s reaction that he isn’t going to continue seeing Leslie, but she isn’t 100% sure of that right now.
                  Someone spoke about a date being different from going to dinner with your buddy. The way Lee phrased it, I am sure he means it to be a date. He wouldn’t ask a buddy this way, and he wouldn’t even ask Francine in that way.
                  To me, this is “a date” in Lee’s mind, and Amanda is wondering if it is “a date”. Lee wants to get to know her better on a personal level and I think he intends this to be the first of many “dates”, but he knows neither he nor Amanda are ready to take it further than close friendship for now. But maybe down the track…. that’s what the dates are for, to figure out if their friendship could sustain a more intimate relationship.

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                • Love this, Morley! Love the cookie jar comparison too! Amanda would rather have a handful than a nibble. Me too!!

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            • I think it is a date, but neither of them completely realize it or would admit it at that point. Lee wouldn’t have been so nervous if it was just an apology. And he wouldn’t mention things like “alone” and “no shop talk.” I know things come up in later episodes that challenge that, but things with these 2 aren’t always a straight line forward. Sometimes there is some backtracking before they move forward again. And I think it is over with Leslie. The look on her face while Lee was on the phone with O’Keefe was very telling. I never noticed it until re-watching for this walk. But at that point I think she knows it’s over. Another missing scene is what happens after everything is wrapped up and he goes back to his apartment. Is Leslie still there? Did she go back to her hotel and leave a note? I guess it’s just like Amanda and Dean. We don’t know the details of the breakup, just at some point, we know that they are no longer involved. Again, this whole scene may have been vague on purpose, so that the viewer could make their own decision on what happened.

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      • What is a ‘date’? Two people, at least one of whom is committed to moving the relationship/acquaintance forward – share an appointment which is not work or organzationally related in which they simply enjoy time together.

        That’s the basic definition to me. In this case, Lee is asking Amanda out for dinner. It is not work-related, though it is a follow up to a case. He is asking her out for the intention to move the relationship forward – “see where it goes.” And he specially states, “no shop-talk.”

        Up til now, their meals or other times spent together have been work related. I do see them as having either had lunch together and talked work, or had dinner after a case in which they talked about the case. I’m not saying they never had time with “no shop-talk.” I’m just saying the purpose of those times was more prone to be work-related, though I’m sure they often shared things about their individual lives. How else would they know so much?

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        • Maybe we have to coin a new category — it’s not a working date, not a romantic date, but maybe a personal date (or friendly date?) Sort of like going to the school prom/dance as “just friends”?

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          • I think you have something there, Happycamper. Actually I think the fact that Lee and Amanda’s relationship doesn’t seem to fit into categories is part of what I like about the show. Lee called his choice to pursue a relationship with Leslie as “perfect” as if he had a check list. His developing relationship with Amanda is despite a checklist, his or hers. It just grows, under the radar. I wonder when I will say, yup, that is a date?

            Actually I kind of think all those categories and ways we go about finding a life partner are rather arbitrary and fake. I am watching my two oldest sons go through that stage now and it is very interesting, to say the least. One in particular has picked courtship instead of dating and a lot of his peers think he is weird, others think it is amazing. We will see.

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            • Beautifully said Morley!!! and I do love how we all at times see things differently 🙂 It does indeed grow!
              I gotta once again agree with Morley’s thoughts on the OTL tag.. you’ve explained well why it doesn’t seem to have been a romantic leap into dating.. but I completely get that others see it that way – can’t wait to hear what you make of upcoming events if Lee and Amanda are dating. hmm! err Not that we all even define dating the same way anyway! lol!

              I think there is a space between being close work friends and dating – and this is the space I currently see Lee and Amanda’s relationship as currently occupying, after the OTL tag….
              I call it a close friendship (acknowledged to not be limited to work) – and for Lee and Amanda this is significant- it’s a step closer to dating..but to me it’s not yet dating. I don’t sense any romantic intention here.. not yet!
              [Happy Camper your idea of personal date is interesting! haaa.. but for me ‘date’ is loaded with meaning so I hold off using that term]

              there’s more to why I don’t call this dating.. but.. it’s probably best if when it shows up – I just say – ahhhh!!! that’s what was missing before! now I’m seeing dating!!! kinda thing! Sooo I’m going to leave that one hanging for the time being..

              Anyway.. have really enjoyed hearing your thoughts everyone!! Keep em coming! Bye!

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              • My definition of a date involves a physical component. Or at least the desire for it. And no, I’m not talking about that. A simple kiss goodnight is how a date ends, if it was a good date. I’m not thinking there was a good night kiss after Lee and Amanda had dinner, not because it wasn’t good, but because it wasn’t a date IMHO. I’m thinking that Lee would not consider it given his relationship with Leslie whatever it was.

                Let’s not forget that Lee used to date multiple women at the same time – I think that has come up in the show or maybe that’s just an impression I have. So Lee having a romantic date-filled relationship with Leslie and also having a non-date personal relationship with Amanda at the same time isn’t that strange. The new/strange part is the choice in women.

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      • As I continue to immerse myself in the 80s, I was watching “Say Anything” (with John Cusack – 1989) and there was a great definition of a date: “A date is a pre-arrangement, with the possibility for love.”

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  13. I tend to think that Leslie is out of the picture now. She’s not dumb, and Lee calling her by the wrong name didn’t go unnoticed. She didn’t make a fuss about it, I think because she didn’t want to spoil the moment, but the way things turned out she didn’t get a moment anyway. I think it would give her serious reservations when she had time to reflect a little, and if Lee had then broken their date for the Russian embassy, I think she would have given him the boot. Since I kind of like Leslie and don’t want to see her get hurt, and I want Lee to do the right thing, I visualize a scenario where both, after a night to think things over, independantly come to the conclusion that they aren’t cut out for each other and break it off amicably.

    So what’s going on with Lee and Amanda? Well, I agree that this doesn’t really have the look of starting a romance. But I think Lee has become aware that friendship with Amanda is more important to him than romance with anybody else. It’s been moving in that direction for a while, but I think it is finally conscious on his part, and he is giving Amanda some time that he would otherwise have been spending on a girlfriend. I don’t think it’s much more than that at this point, which is in itself an indication of how far Lee’s come.

    I think the offer of dinner is certainly an apology, and Amanda recognizes it as such. (I like the glimpse we seem to be getting of the Agency’s office-subculture; dinner seems to be a recognized way for payback or making something up to someone. There was one episode where Francine did something for Lee, and he said “I owe you a drink” and she responded “You owe me a dinner.” However, there is something different about this offer, and I think Lee’s key phrases are “No shop talk for a change” and “We don’t do enough of that, do we?”. He flounders around a lot about the menu, which I think is just him working up to saying this. What it means, is that this is not business, it’s personal. They have been spending a lot of time together, but I think they have always cloaked it as “work”. He is now offering a new stage in their relationship, where they don’t need to use work as an excuse. Amanda responds very warmly, so I think she recognizes it too. It’s something way different than if he had asked her to go to the embassy dinner (LOL awkward, with Leslie there!)

    I will be interested in seeing how the next few episodes fit together as we walk through them, because I couldn’t make sense of the order in terms of the relationship. So far, however, I’m feeling pretty comfortable with the order we put this one in.

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    • oh Hooray! found this comment!!! Happy Camper just wanted to mention I loved your insights on the ‘dinner’ culture at the agency – very cool!!! A great reference there to The First Time! It was very early in that episode where Lee was in trouble and Francine backed him up.. so Lee said he owed her a drink, and she countered that he owed her dinner! lol.. but .. that would not have been a date! 😉 tee hee..

      dinner does seem to be a form of payback – good call!!! So it makes Lee’s ‘no shop talk’ suggestion rather special huh!! 🙂

      Loved this Happy Camper:

      >He flounders around a lot about the menu, which I think is just him working up to saying this. What it means, is that this is not business, it’s personal. They have been spending a lot of time together, but I think they have always cloaked it as “work”. He is now offering a new stage in their relationship, where they don’t need to use work as an excuse. Amanda responds very warmly, so I think she recognizes it too.

      an apology.. but.. so much more!!! 🙂

      LOL are we ready to let OTL go and move on to TOTDW??!! 🙂

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    • Really like this, happycamper!! Good insight about the dinner thing!

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  14. I’ve been trying to figure out how to put into words all that this tag/episode makes me feel about their relationship. Several posts here have already done a great job. One thing that I always love is how super-spy Scarecrow/Womanizer is reverted back to a tongue-tied teenager in asking Amanda out. I think it’s more than just the fact that it’s not an ordinary date or even that it’s Amanda. I think he knows this is a shift in the relationship. Not necessarily a romantic one yet but a major shift. Once he utters those words he can’t go back. And Amanda knows this too which is why I think she says ‘not by a half’. Of course she says it because she’s glad and wants to develop the relationship but also those words throw Lee a kind of lifeline that not only is she saying yes but she’s enthusiastic about the prospect and he’s not alone on that island making a move in their relationship. I have a lot more thoughts about what kind of turning point this is for them but most of them come from the knowledge of things that happen later so I’ll be good here :-).

    And about the steak and baked potato… I thought that sounded great. My first thought with that is always that I’d be thrilled to hear that’s what the guy wants me to eat because then I don’t have to pretend I like to survive on two carrots and a glass of water LOL. Maybe they each have a salad and share the steak and baked potato… oops that’s me being bad about future episodes 🙂

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  15. Of all the times they have been out together I did always see this as being the first time Lee officially asked Amanda out on what I would call a date, but I don’t see either Lee or Amanda calling it that yet. I think both Lee and Amanda are at a point where they realize there is more than friendship between them and they are both feeling it out a little bit, but it is a long way from any kind of commitment for either of them.

    Lee, I think for the most part, just realized how much Leslie’s presence bugs Amanda and he is not willing to risk his relationship with Amanda for a relationship with anyone else, but I think that is the most he has admitted to himself at this point. I think he is very much falling in love with Amanda at this point, but he is not willing to admit that much yet. As for Leslie, I doubt he is still dating her. He already called her by Amanda’s name and now if he is the one who cancelled on Leslie to be with Amanda, I can’t see her going back. She is smart enough to see that there is someone else in the picture. I also think Lee probably had the good graces to let Leslie go now that he is admitting to himself that he can’t maintain the relationship he has with Amanda and have any kind of real relationship with anyone else. I don’t know if he has officially given up other women is his mind, but I think this is probably the last time there really are any other women.

    As to where Amanda is. Most people see Amanda as having given up on any romantic feelings she had for Lee is season 1, I actually don’t see her completely burying those feelings until season 2. I think after Brunettes Amanda realized she wanted Lee’s respect and acceptance as a professional more than she wanted anything else with him. I think Amanda did realize well into season 1 the idea of anything with romantic with Lee was a pipe dream at that point, but did’t completely bury those feelings until she realized how much she valued other things from Lee more.

    Is Amanda in love here? Don’t really know? I think Amanda started to fall a little bit in love is season one and than quickly put the brakes on it as she realized something like that with Lee was not a possibility. I think she is starting to open up to the idea that maybe it is a possibility now, but I think she is probably very cautious of that at this point. I think she does realize in this episode that all those feelings she repressed are still there, but I don’t see her willing to indulge those feelings yet. Lee is going to have show her something is really different first. It’s not going to be like the end of season 2 where I think Amanda on a subconscious level did start to think of Lee as kind of being her man so to speak just because of everything they shared. I think Lee is going to have to consciously make an effort to show Amanda something is different and he isn’t quite there yet. I think he is firmly moving in that direction now though. He is starting to admit things to himself and so is Amanda, but Amanda has not quite opened herself up to the possibility of this being love yet. Once she does I think she falls all the way in love, but I think there is a difference to falling a little bit in love and really being in love. I don’t think Amanda is really in love yet.

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  16. “I didn’t think Legislation was the problem?”
    Maybe they needed new legislation to allow them–or better allow them–to enforce the existing legislation. Or, maybe, it’s just a… (drum roll, please…)… schmot hole! pass the chocolate, please

    Yeah–the Season 3 DVDs suck for screencaps. 😦 Makes it tough for memes…

    Lee and Amanda are very colour-coordinated here. I’m sure Morley will be able to give us an awesome costume post at some point–maybe even a teaser/some comments now for us? (Pretty please, Morley?)

    Yep–Lee’s hands are flapping away… he’s in a little bit of a tizzy–with the Lizzy behind him. 😀

    Take note, Lee… the big smile on Amanda’s face… all it takes to make Amanda happy is to not be a butt. Be nice–be Lee. She doesn’t want/need (Scarecrow’s) flashy trimmings–just honesty/genuineness and niceness. I know it’s scary for you, Lee, but take note! 🙂

    “I think some may see this as Lee letting Amanda know he romantically prefers Amanda, what do you think?”
    Nope–I’m with you… I think all he’s saying here is sorry without saying the words, and yes, that he’s come to the conclusion that he’d rather spend time with Amanda… but low-key. As a friend. (For now–LOL.)

    “Does this mean Lee is now committed to romancing Amanda? do share your views!!!”
    No–I don’t think he’s quite there yet. He’s definitely had an epiphany this episode, but he’s still not ready to “romance” Amanda. His barriers are still up in that regard with her–I think he’s thinking that when he lowers that barrier he will be setting himself up for the possibility of enormous pain. With Leslie, he had no vested interest already, so nothing to lose if the relationship tanked. With Amanda, he’s worred he’d lose her friendship–which he’s come to realize is very important to him.

    Yes, I agree that Amanda’s tupperware got a shakeup this episode–somewhat of an earthquake in the tupperware cupboard. She is honest enough with herself to realize that her reactions to Leslie’s presence, and her reactions to Lee’s interactions with Leslie and the whole dress debacle, indicate that her feelings are not as platonic as she has been trying to keep them.

    It does kind of feel like something’s missing… the jump in Lee’s demeanour… but we know that Lee tends to blow up and get over it, so I just go with it. It’s the next day, presumably, so he’s over his hissy-fit and his offer of dinner is an apology of sorts. Mending fences with his friend who he’s treated pretty shabbily.

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    • Oh, and I forgot to mention… while I don’t think Lee is intending the dinner to be romantic–he’s not there yet–he does make a point of saying “no shop talk for a change”, so it’s a shift in their friendship… another step forward. It’s personal, but not yet romantic… Does that make any sense.

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      • It is definitely personal, not business. And for all the times he has said the reverse, I think that is pretty significant. I think Amanda notices that too. More decompartmentalization.

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      • It makes perfect sense to me KC, you read my mind!!! It’s very significant.. but it’s not the final step… well at least I don’t see it that way 🙂

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    • Some teaser costume comments.
      They are looking very comfortable and homespun, I even see wrinkles in the sleeve of Lee’s shirt. I like that. There is no pretense in their clothes. And they are both wearing blue, the psychological meaning of the color blue is trust and responsibility. I think those two concepts could encapsulate this dinner offer and how they are affirming their friendship. You can trust me and I am taking responsibility for the care of our friendship. A lot of Amanda’s blue shirt is covered by a sweater vest. I wonder if that is symbolic of her being a bit guarded. Lee’s shirt is opened. I like it when he isn’t as buttoned up.
      How’s that? do the comments satisfy? It is funny how much I enjoy what I see when I stop and look at the comments. I can follow a path down my very own rabbit hole. I see I have found you all down here, although it is a bit early for wine. Pass the chocolate 😉

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    • weirdly, I am relieved to hear it’s not just me who has issues with season 3 screen caps.. and such a beautiful season!! 😦 will just have to do my best..
      Thanks KC!

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  17. I remember spending a lot of time re-watching this episode when I was a teenager because of all the relational significance. I always viewed this as the watershed episode for Lee in particular. After this, there will be no more Leslies. No more Randi-babies either, for that matter. It seems to me he’s asking for a date, or at least for a blatantly personal relationship with Amanda that doesn’t depend on their work milieu. I think this tag has tremendous significance when considered in light of a particular instance in a future episode which I will certainly not mention at this time. 😉

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  18. Like everyone else, I think that there are a couple of scenes that are missing from this episode.

    I think that it could use another scene with Lee and Leslie. I’d love to see what Leslie’s reaction to the end of Lee’s call and his sudden rush to leave would be. She’s on call all the time when she’s in town, so you’d think that she’d understand about unexpected calls, but it looked to me like she tried to get Lee’s attention when he was on the phone. Was she upset at the interruption or did she just want to ask about the “girl” comment because she thought it was about her. Is she understanding about Lee’s “business” intruding on his personal life or would she be more the type to complain about other people doing something that she often has to do herself (run off to tend to unexpected business)? Lee mentions later that the embassy thing was really kind of a work/date for Leslie. Maybe part of the reason why things don’t work well between Lee and Leslie is that their work lives clash with each other. Lee and Amanda are more in sync, both professionally and personally. It would have been nice to have a scene that would show more conflict between Lee and Leslie, that Leslie won’t understand everything about Lee and that she isn’t as “perfect” as Lee says at first.

    I’d also like to see more of Lee and Amanda after the show-down with O’Keefe. What I’d particularly like is to see something where Amanda says that she understands that Lee doesn’t particularly approve of the way she stepped in to handle things because it was unexpected and unorthodox, and Lee basically tells her that the real reason he was upset was because he knew that O’Keefe would shoot her if he had a chance and that was the whole reason he wanted to send her home and have Francine come instead. One of Lee’s faults is that he doesn’t always explain himself or his intentions. He expects people to understand what’s going on by his actions, to guess or figure things out: he wants Leslie to guess what he does, he wants Amanda to understand that little gestures he makes like inviting her out to dinner or helping her with something are thank-yous and apologies. It’s like when he invited her out to dinner in Artful Dodger (Amanda guessed that the real reason was an apology) and when he threatened the clown into coming for Jamie’s birthday in Saved by the Bells (a thank-you). It would be nice if he had a time when he actually stated his real reasons for doing something. Amanda may have thought that being sent home was an insult or punishment of some kind, but actually Lee was afraid for her. Amanda could also have an opportunity to point out to Lee where she stands: that she’s not going to hang back when she thinks something needs to be done and that she’ll go ahead without him if she feels that she has to, so if he really wants to help her, he needs to make the effort to be there with her like she has with him.

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    • Good thoughts for a fanfic.
      Having said that, men aren’t naturally good at explaining these sorts of things, they tend to speak more with their actions. Some fanfics fall flat because they have Lee gushing with romantic words and concepts that would just never come out of the mouth of any male.

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      • Hmm, good point. I was thinking something along the lines of:

        Amanda: I don’t see why you’re angry about this.

        Lee (sounding angry): I’m not angry! It’s just that I told you to go home, where you’d be safe!

        Amanda: Look, I know that you didn’t want me along because I’m kind of, well, unorthodox, and I can see that you would be worried that I’d miss my shot because I’m new at this, but Lee I’ve been practicing, and even though I don’t like the idea of shooting someone, I’d never let him shoot you–”

        Lee (still sounding angry): You don’t get it, do you? If you’d missed, he wouldn’t have shot me, he’d have shot you. (turns and starts to walk away, but pauses) But, thanks for being there.

        Amanda (quietly): I wish you could have been there with me.

        Lee (confused): Huh?

        Amanda: Nothing. I just did what I had to do. I hope you have a nice time with Leslie. (walks off, leaving Lee to think)

        Kind of says it, but trying not to be too wordy (except for Amanda’s rambling beginning). I was afraid I was starting something with that big, long post up there. Gah, why is my current story taking so long for me to finish?! I’d bang my head on the keyboard, but I’m using a laptop. That would mean banging my head on the whole computer. 😛

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    • Yes, Lee definitely does have a hard time giving Amanda the details about everything. It’s one of the things I’ve noticed when putting together the Amanda Profressional Growth posts. Lee and Billy both expect Amanda to do so much without telling her anything! It’s so nice when they actually make her part of the team and fill her in before hand.

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  19. Okay, loving the casual Lee in this tag, also loving the bashful, hesitant, not quite sure of himself Lee. It’s the real Lee, not Scarecrow.

    Amanda has had quite a bit of upheaval in this episode. Her reactions indicate that while she may not be head-over-heels about Lee, there is something there. For a while now she has had Lee’s undivided attention. He has shown several times recently just how well he knows her and has really been her knight of late. That has to be making some sort of impact on her.

    However, I think that she is still being careful and cautious with her heart. While Amanda has not been a black-belt dater like Lee she has dated. However, she never seems to fully immerse herself into a relationship. She seems to hold herself back. I think she keeps a barrier around her heart just as much as Lee does. She may have thought she was sure about things before in her marriage, but it didn’t work out so she is hesitant.

    I mentioned before that while I think that Lee has some jerk moments in this episode I don’t get so angry about it. In generalized terms, the typical male has issues in dealing with females and emotional aspects of relationships. Look at all those books that are out just to help women deal with how men handle things like Men Are From Mars and He’s Just Not That Into You. I’ve watched boys at school be absolutely mean to girls they profess to like. There’s the kicking, hair-pulling, and the face-mkaing. If a game starts on the playground or a specific toy is brought out the boys ignore the girls they were chatting with to play. I’ve even seen some boys be nice and attentive to the best friend of the girl they like just to get them jealous. And we’ve all heard about those break-up stories where the guy leaves a message or sends a text or email to end the relationship.

    This behavior is from guys who seemingly grew up in a relatively normal situation with no issues. Lee, as we know, has not had such a normal upbringing. Add to the fact that all of his serious relationships have been superficial. By superficial I mean that they haven’t been thorough or complete. HIs relationship with his parents was that of a 5 year old who at that point idolizes his parents. It didn’t have time to develop into a deeper, adult relationship. We also know that his relationship with his uncle (and that Eva) were neither deep, thorough, or complete. I’m not excusing Lee, I’m just looking at his lack of ability to handle the situation in any other way.

    Amanda’s impact and influence on Lee has been the most thorough and complete. His reactions and responses to Amanda have been like an immature little boy who likes a girl reacts. The great thing about Amanda is that she has been steady and been there for him even through his immature reactions. When he yells or gets angry she is patient and waits for it to blow over or she helps diffuse it. When he has withdrawn or tried to retreat she has been there for him. And at this point he is still learning how to deal with all that he is feeling.

    And in regards to the dress and the embassy party, I think that is where some things must have really gelled for Lee. Amanda has been in some pretty awesome dresses before. But this particular dress and that particular evening seems to have hit Lee in a unique and special way. For some reason he decided that that feeling could be repeated with someone else, not realizing that it wasn’t about the dress or the party, it was about the person he was with that made it unique and special.

    I think the insomnia was about realizing that somehow his choices at that moment were not the right ones. Seeing Leslie in the dress was another moment where that probably gelled for him. I think that he wants to take his time to make sure that this choice and decision is the right one. Sorry this is so long, but I did say I was waiting to explain why I wasn’t too angry with Lee.

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  20. Can I just add that this is the most attractive Lee of the whole series. Even better than European Lee because here he is attractive on every level, not just physically. 🙂

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  21. I have to come back later to write all I want to on Lee and Amanda. I’m on my phone now so too much to say. But I did want to comment that yes it doesn’t make any sense that there would be a need for new legislation since TA was already breaking the law. And of course it’s only the next day so there wouldn’t be anything in Congress yet anyway. But even more than that, licenses and catch limits in the Chesapeake Bay are governed by the state of Maryland and the Commonwealth of Virginia. They aren’t federal laws.

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  22. I’m going to come back to comment later, but I just want to say that i always think of Lee’s smile at the end of the tag here as his “Chiclet smile” (you know, how kids would stick Chiclets in the front of their mouth as teeth…???… or was that just my Kiwi misperception of American kids? 😀 We didn’t have Chiclets…) Anyway–BB doesn’t have huge teeth, but in this pic they look huge. It always amused me…

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    • For shame, KC! Chiclet teeth??? ROFL! But yep, I agree. Not the most attractive look. I never stuck Chiclets in my mouth as teeth. And none of my friends did either.

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  23. Hmmmmmm, I really have to do some more contemplating about the tag. I know when I first saw this episode (and had assumed Lee was sleeping with Leslie — I’ve changed my mind on that) I was furious with Lee for blowing off Leslie and furious with Amanda for letting Lee get away with his behaviour toward Leslie and her. Maybe you fine folks will help me feel better about the tag — the very swoony screen shots certainly can’t hurt.
    I wish we could have seen a scene where Amanda tells Lee how she will forgive him but his recent behaviour (regardless of his relationship status) won’t be tolerated anymore. Or Lee making it clear that he and Leslie aren’t together anymore — it feels too much like Amanda is willing to settle for any scraps Lee is willing to throw her (JMHO)

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  24. Well, what a difference 24 hours can make. There’s rich fodder for fanfic to cover the missing hours between O’Keefe getting netted and this scene.
    I agree with you Iwsod, this tag scene is much, much better than what was in the script. Unlike some of the last minute script changes, which I think is what this is, this one actually works better. The decision to reduce Leslie’s presence in Lee’s life was a good one. Lee couldn’t really carry on a long-term serious relationship with another woman without adversely affecting the closeness of his friendship with Amanda.
    I like that they are both dressed casually and I get a sense of them just being Lee and Amanda here – not Scarecrow and Mrs King. Still, as they walk away from the boat there is an odd sense of awkwardness between them, and I also see a sort of wistfulness in Amanda.
    I assume in the intervening 24 hours both Lee and Amanda have had quiet time separately and alone to contemplate recent events.
    Amanda I think has finally acknowledged to herself that she was harbouring romantic feelings for Lee but has probably determined that since Lee now has a serious girlfriend she should be happy for him and put on a brave face. He is still her friend and she has a new sense of purpose with her job at the Agency so I can see her, as always, deciding to be grateful for the good things she has in her life. Inside I think she is still a little sad and hurting, maybe a little embarrassed that she allowed herself to think of Lee ever accepting her as a romantic partner – hence the awkwardness she feels now in his presence.
    Lee seems to have a plan here – to me he comes across as a guy who has come to an important realisation. The difference between he and Amanda in this scene is that Amanda is still a little unsettled, not quite knowing where she stands in his life anymore. Lee on the other hand comes across as slightly nervous but somehow more relaxed and at ease within himself than he has ever been before – like a man who has found a clear path after losing his way. To me he has acknowledged to himself how important Amanda is to him, how much he values her friendship, and I think he has opened himself to exploring a path that might lead to a deeper relationship with Amanda.
    I also think he has effectively ended his relationship with Leslie. Going to the Soviet Embassy party tonight with Lee was clearly a big deal for her – heck, he even bought her the dress for it! How do you think she took it when he told her he wouldn’t be going? I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t have lied to her and told her he had to work or something like that. This a man who’s finished with the lies, including the self-deception he has been practising of late. I think the conversation that ensued would have brought the relationship to a close – gently, probably sorrowfully for Leslie, but Lee would not want to lead her on any longer once he acknowledged that his heart was just not in that relationship. The look on his face after Amanda reminds him he is going to the Russian Embassy party with Leslie tells the story – I see fleeting regret and sorrow for hurting Leslie but a determination to let Amanda understand he wants to spend the evening with her.
    Amanda’s look her is one of the best moments in the entire series. I’ve always thought that at this moment she realises what she thought would never be possible is happening, i.e. that Lee may be contemplating a deeper relationship with her. She can’t contain the look of happy shock on her face, and Lee must see this too. Steak, red wine, no shop talk – call me crazy but there’s not a lot of grey area there, sounds like a DATE to me!
    If he just wanted to have an informal dinner with Amanda to make up for his bad behaviour of late, why do it on the evening he had clearly been anticipating a date with Leslie (looking “grrr-eat” in that sexy black dress)? He could have just asked Amanda what night she would next be free, but no, he wants this to happen tonight. The implications of this won’t be lost on Amanda.
    I’m not saying Lee and Amanda have made a decision here to have a romance. Lee I think has opened himself to the possibility of this happening as their friendship deepens but for now it is in the “never-never”. All he’s concentrating on at the moment is he wants to spend more time with his best friend because he has finally admitted to himself he likes to be with her and she makes him feel good.
    Amanda’s just had another unexpected shock. She obviously likes the idea of spending more time with Lee outside of work but I can see her needing a bit of head space time to contemplate where this could lead. It was okay to fantasise but now that a deeper relationship with Lee Stetson might be a possibility sometime in the future, I can see her really wanting to take some time to think this through.
    For the moment, of course, Amanda doesn’t know whether Lee intends to continue with Leslie but given the circumstances and what he has just said, she must be wondering if that relationship could be over.

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  25. What I’m wondering is, where they would have this non-date (date? Is this a date? Never mind…) of theirs? A fancy restaurant? I would normally be rooting for Lee’s apartment, but given what happened the last time Amanda was there, I’m thinking that might be just a bit awkward all around.

    You know, I know that the show portrays women as swooning over Lee when he acts all charming, winking, flirting, kissing hands, etc., but I think Amanda seems to be more charmed by the quiet, bashful Lee that we see at the end here. She smiles softly at him, and seems to be really enjoying the attention. I think it’s a warmer, softer, deeper enjoying of him (if that makes any sense) compared to the times when he kisses her hand or winks. I don’t know, I can’t explain it well, but I think the moment between them would have seemed very different if Lee had asked her to join him for dinner in a more confident, flirting kind of way.

    I think part of it is his shyness shows us, and Amanda, that this moment means more to him than just an ordinary date with any of his other “admirers”.

    LOL, I’m going to stop now and pretend this made some kind of sense. Thoughts, anyone?

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    • Hi Alyssa G. And welcome to the blog! I think I missed the welcome wagon when you first commented maybe? I think I understand what you’re saying here. The difference in Lee’s behavior here from his usual self-assured confident way around women is noticeable. And I do think that Amanda sees that difference and appreciates it very much. I don’t see this as an invitation to a date, but rather an invitation to spend time with a friend who is important and who you enjoy spending time with. But regardless of what it’s called, it’s definitely different because it’s with Amanda!

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  26. I agree that the meal is terribly ‘normal’ for Lee – not his usual (pretentious) style of wining and dining women. A sign of moving closer to Amanda’s world? The baked potato makes me laugh – very eighties. Was considered the ‘healthy’ choice then where I came from!!

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