4/16 Season Three, Episode 18: Wrong Number-Scarecrow and Mrs King

Back to the Q bureau and Lee is reading a file.. while Amanda is in a side room- I don’t think we’ve seen this before.. A vault!
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Lee: Twelve Hundred and Twenty Three – that’s an A1 rating. You really like this guy Towne.
(Amanda closes the vault door. I guess that’s where they tell people Lee the film director stores his films?!)
3.18 WRONG NUMBER.avi_000641074[Don’t worry Lee.. she doesn’t ‘like like’ him!]
Amanda: He seems all right. I was a little unsure how to score him on personal philosophy. He thinks we have a few too many secrets. I took off five points.
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[hmm.. I thought that was because they weren’t capturing what was really dangerous.. not because of the secrets themselves.. but whatev. Amanda still liked him]
(Lee goes to sit at his desk.. )
Lee: No, that’s good, that’s good. If he’s not perfect he’s a better security risk… [meaning he has a lower risk? lol this sounds a bit weird]
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…You know if you have doubts you ask questions and you get answers. It gives you a personal stake.
[Um why the personal stake comment? seems a bit out of left field to me.. or is it just me?!]
Amanda: Mmmhhh.
[Okay, is it just me or are you getting an Amanda is humouring Lee and his little tutorial here?! Okay – I’m starting to see Amanda does seem less in need of Lee’s approval here IMHO!]
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Lee: It’s real good Amanda.
Amanda: Thank you.
Lee: Look, I you want to talk about this later I’ll – I’ll do it but I’ve got to get back to my work here.
[Seems like there’s no attitude here between them and everything is mostly serene.. even when Lee indicates he needs to get back to his work. Trying to be gruff Lee from earlier – because he wants his desk back- is gone… but.. I do think Amanda is less enthused by Lee’s positive feedback than I’ve noticed previously.. thoughts? I’ll look forward to keep an eye on this as we continue – if this continues to play out in this ep]
Amanda: Okay.
Lee: So— there you go. 3.18 WRONG NUMBER.avi_000672305
Amanda: Thanks.
Lee: By the way, we found Abernathy. Istanbul, 104 temperature, delirious, Turkish flu… [Were there rats? Big big rats?!]
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…Now we don’t know who the Russians have.
[whoo whooo I know! I know!!
I love how even thought they are not actually working on the same cases here, Lee still wants to share an update with Amanda! Smile ]
Amanda: Well, good luck.
(Amanda turns and begins to leave.)

Lee
: Oh Amanda—
(Amanda turns back to Lee)
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Amanda: Yah.
Lee: Hypothetically speaking, 3.18 WRONG NUMBER.avi_000686619
…how would you rate me?
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Amanda looks taken by surprise at this err hypothetical.. 3.18 WRONG NUMBER.avi_000689923
She quietly smiles.. but quickly tries to cover it..
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Amanda: I wouldn’t….3.18 WRONG NUMBER.avi_000691424
…Not yet.
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Amanda gives Lee a very cheeky grin…
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and makes a very speedy exit after her flirty truth bomb Smile [thus why it’s a little blurry]
We cut back to Lee looking at the door.. his brain trying to catch up with his ears..
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LOL he’s a bit stunned and confused by this one!
3.18 WRONG NUMBER.avi_000695127[Me? I’m confused by the weird smk chimes that seem to be going off as Lee processes Amanda’s answer! Sounds like baby lullaby music all dressed up as the smk theme…?! Is it just me?!]
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‘Not yet’ – sounds quite similar to the famous ‘not exactly’ doesn’t it!!! Do you think this is deliberate?
The connotations of ‘not yet’ are fabulous.. a great quip from Amanda.. it assumes rating Lee will be coming in the future! Smile
What do you think Lee meant when he asked Amanda how she’d rate him?
I think he was talking about security risk. lol.. but she totally threw him a curve ball and gave an answer based on his rating as a lover Smile how much of a security risk is he to her heart?! Winking smile
Whooo hooo!! what a great little moment! I had completely forgotten it!! Who knows what other goodies are right around the corner?!

So, leaving confused Lee.. we move on to Beirut.
Sooo not in Afghanistan anymore huh.. The music change is a big jolt – we’re not in fairy tale land anymore people!
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Call me crazy, but Beirut looks a bit like Monaco 40 years ago..
Horns are blaring..
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Okay.. this doesn’t look like Monaco!
The scene opens with a smack, a scream.. and a close up on bound hands.. then another smack and cry.. Ouchie..Francine was right to be worried about the situation she was in!
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KGB Man: Khvatit, u nas yest’ otvet . (Enough! We have our answer) – The teapot baddie has arrived.
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[Kudos Kiwismh! How did you translate this?!]
Rasskazhite podrobneye , kto vy rabotayete na etot raz. (Tell me once more who you work for.)
(Francine responds.. in the same language.. what is it?)
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Francine is not looking glamorous and all.. but she isn’t looking like she has been hit much either.
Francine: Ya reporter dlya Columbia Broadcasting System. I am a reporter for the Columbia Broadcasting—
KGB Man: You’d be amazed at the speed and accuracy of our new ID Section at the Derzhinski Square, Miss Desmond.
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Quick! Cue an ‘I’m busted and in lots of trouble’ look! Yep.. deep trouble!
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Back to Washington DC.
We find Billy in his raincoat.. must be time to do spy stuff!
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A black car pulls up in front of Billy..
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And the window is dramatically lowered. whooooo Gregory!
It never ceases to Amaze me how these known enemies of the state actually manage to get back into the country and operate freely 😉
Gregory: Want a lift? 3.18 WRONG NUMBER.avi_000745178
Billy: Gregory. I didn’t expect to see you back in DC so soon. Or ever…
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(Billy gets in the car)
…I thought our last escapade finished your career.
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[Okay. My little brain is struggling to remember Gregory.
Gotta go back and read what happened again!
[See final post of Tail of the Dancing Weasel HERE]
hmm didn’t help me much.. He’s shipped home and no one will believe him about Harry being a triple agent?!
Iwsod is feeling a bit confuzzled.. I’m not really following why it would have finished Gregory’s career.. or why he would even end up in the Lubyanka… can someone remind me? or explain to me? I’ve read the TOTDW final post.. but I don’t have time to go back and recap TOTDW – some cliff notes would be fab- anyone?!]

Gregory: I should have Billy, really. But I just happened to have salted away some very fine video tapes for a rainy day….
 [Whoooo seems Gregory is also in the film business Winking smile ]
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…The First Undersecretary for International Exchange was rather eager to get me out of Moscow.
Billy: Well, why back here to DC? We know you here.
Gregory: I know you… [Ah yep. Red flag Billy – here’s that ‘personal stake’ that Lee was talking about!]
…It’s comfortable. Besides, my tailor’s here. [whwhahaaa.. I like it!]
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Billy
: What’s on your mind?
Gregory: Actually I would like to discuss a piece of property with you. Real estate – it’s my new cover. What do you think?
Billy: What property?
Gregory: Yours and mine Billy. Or should I say, yours for mine. [I won’t alter what kiwismh has transcribed here.. I may be wrong.. but I’m hearing Gregory say ‘Yours formerly’ ?? anyone??]
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Billy
: You have something to trade?
Gregory: Mmm, an import actually. All the way from Afghanistan.
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Whoooo who could it be??!!!! Francine??!!!!
The scene ends here..
This all raises an interesting question.. what would Billy do for Francine? would he treat her like he would any other agent?? and would he not forget where his priorities lay?! They spend so much time together.. it does seem Billy and Francine are especially close.. or is it just me – thoughts?

And.. what do you make of Lee’s asking Amanda how she’d rate him?!!

That’s all for the moment.. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

21 responses to “4/16 Season Three, Episode 18: Wrong Number-Scarecrow and Mrs King

  1. I just realized that we haven’t really talked about Billy and Francine. I always had the impression that Billy is kind of grooming Francine to take his place. She’s already his second-in-command. I think that he’s fond of her, although he’s sometimes hard on her because she can get a little too full of herself and he wants to keep her humble and teach her how to delegate tasks to other people instead of trying to handle everything by herself just because she thinks she can do it the best. I’d kind of like to see more interaction between Francine and Billy by themselves. There are a few brief moments when it’s just the two of them in the show, but not that many. It would be interesting to know what they talk about when Lee and Amanda aren’t around.

    We could use some comments from Khell here. She has insights. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree – I enjoy seeing Billy and Francine’s characters apart from Lee and Amanda. I tend to think that Amanda brings out the worst in Francine, and Lee brings out her uber competitive streak. Francine seems to be more respectful of Billy than Lee – she has more respect for his authority. And maybe Billy’s relationship to Francine is more one of a mentor than his with Lee’s is. Francine seems to be able to take orders and criticism better from Billy than Lee can. I get the feeling that Francine doesn’t have a father around, and maybe Billy is her “work” father, while the relationship between Billy and Lee is more one of friends.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I think you’re right that Francine changes depending on who’s around her. She finds Amanda irritating because she’s a relative amateur — she didn’t have the training the others did and, as far as Francine is concerned, she’s gotten as far as she has through luck and her relationship with Lee. In a way, I think she looks at Amanda like an annoying little sister who tags along on missions. Francine also seems have a kind of sibling relationship with Lee these days — they tease each other and compete with each other.

        But, Billy is the father figure in the group, the voice of reason and maturity. He brings the others together. I think he’s an interesting character because, even though he looks like just a somewhat pudgy administrator, he also worked his way up through the ranks as a spy and was tough enough and smart enough to survive in a dangerous profession where not everyone makes it. Francine values strength and skill, and I think that’s why she respects Billy. She probably confides in him more than she does most people.

        Like

        • Hmmm – maybe I could extrapolate it all and say that Lee is the rebellious, rule-breaking teenage son, and Francine is the rule-keeping one in the “family”. Possibly part of what is going on with her and Amanda is that Francine values structure and “moving up in the ranks” in a predicatable way (set pathways to promotion as generally occurs in universities, hospitals and government departments). Amanda is like the cop “on the fast-track” because of a degree in criminology. The cops who’ve worked their way up the ranks don’t like that. (Except that, in Amanda’s case, she charms the others at the agency, and it’s only Francine, who’s struggled for what she’s achieved, that feels resentful).

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Strangely enough, my favourite part of this is the visual of Billy standing with an umbrella in the rain waiting for Gregory. He just looks good. V spy-like. And I always enjoy a bit of extra-Bullpen Billy.

    Gregory is also a favourite baddie. So refined and genteel in his baddie’ness….

    Like

    • Yep – love that Billy wears a trench coat – just like Amanda in SAABeyond and unlike Lee in that same episode – rebellious son indeed like you said in your last comment.

      My favorite line in this whole episode is when Gregory says that his tailor is in D.C. Love his dry humor here. Although I could argue that he is not completely being funny here. Gregory is definitely in the top 3 of SMK baddies if not #1.

      Like

  3. My favorite part of this episode. Not really much to add that hasn’t been said. Really like that he was asking for her opinion of him as an agent, knowing how thorough she is. It makes me feel a little better about his remark before where he downplays the assignment. (He’s recovered from his cactus incident.) I really like the way Amanda handles herself in this episode. We’ll see more of that later. Then she tosses him that “not yet,” and leaves him speechless. Go Amanda!

    Like

  4. It would seem that a few things in the episode hark back to the TOTDW. First of all, where Gregory fits in. Crawford knew he was probably going to get fired and was following Gregory and saw him with Thornton. Crawford must have contacted Gregory and tried to make a deal about getting a letter that would expose Thornton as a triple agent. Gregory was hoping it would be a way to bring the Agency to an end. When that didn’t work Gregory told Crawford if he could kill Thornton and have it blamed on the Americans they would call the situation even as he had already given Crawford money. Obviously, Crawford failed and supposedly Gregory was going to be sent back to Russia in disgrace. Harry mentions that he, as Kolinsky, was very popular in the Lubyanka so maybe Gregory was punished in some way for that.

    Secondly, Gregory and Billy also met in TOTDW. They met in a park where Gregory was lunching on caviar and wine. He called Billy and Billy came. Gregory claimed the meeting was in the interest of keeping the lines of communication open and the spirit of detente. It was more like a fishing expedition.

    Finally, TOTDW is where Lee first gets the Q Bureau and we haven’t seen it a whole lot in recent episodes. It’s also in this episode that Amanda is in the vault when Lee comes in, so we have seen it before. He knows she followed him and saved him by throwing the baseball through Harry’s window.

    I love how Amanda can constantly throw Lee for loop. She doesn’t do or say what he expects or thinks she will do. She keeps him on his toes and I think that makes her even more attractive to him.

    I like how Francine’s line gives a shout out to the network that aired SMK. She says she’s a reporter for the Columbia Broadcasting System which is just CBS.

    Like

    • Hiya Valerie! hey you gave that a good go! thanks for explaining!!!

      Harry mentions that he, as Kolinsky, was very popular in the Lubyanka so maybe Gregory was punished in some way for that.

      This so far seems the only explanation for why Gregory would be in any trouble to me!!

      I like how Francine’s line gives a shout out to the network that aired SMK. She says she’s a reporter for the Columbia Broadcasting System which is just CBS.

      Great Catch Valerie!!! whoo hoo!

      Hi everyone! Life’s a bit frantic right now.. but lovin all your comments 🙂 bye!

      Like

    • Regarding Francine’s reporter alibi, I wonder if the network would have gotten some flak if it had portrayed Francine as being a reporter from some other network. I guess the alternative would have been to make one up — all considering, I like the shout out too!

      Like

  5. I was kind of nervous when Billy got into the car with Gregory. Don’t they teach spies never to accept rides from strange men? I know Billy knows him, but Gregory is still pretty strange. 😉 How could Billy be sure that this wasn’t some kind of attempt to kidnap him?

    Like

    • You’re not the only one. I hope Billy would have some sort of Inspector Gadget style protection against baddies in that trench coat, umbrella and hat. 😉

      Like

    • I would think Billy and Gregory (and other higher ranking IO’s on both sides) have an “understanding”. There would be times when they would need to “talk” to negotiate or defuse situations. Also, Billy would be a big fish to kidnap – that would creat an unnecessary incident between the powers.

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      • True. It reminds me of the episode of Get Smart where KAOS kidnapped the Chief, and then the two sides kept kidnapping other agents to try to even the score for a trade until only Siegfried and Max were left:

        Siegfried: I suppose you know why I’ve called for this meeting.
        Max: Yes. We’ve both run out of agents. And there would be no point in our kidnapping each other because there would be no one left to do the negotiating.
        Siegfried: Exactly.

        Liked by 2 people

        • I never watched Get Smart but that sounds like a hysterical episode, at least for people who can tolerate the “uh oh, I know what’s coming next” Car Wars style of humor!

          As for Billy getting into the car with Gregory, I thnk we are seeing “honor among thieves” also applies to “honor among spies”. There seems to be an international rule book. Miss Manners Etiquette for Spies (how’s that for dating myself, Janet?!?)

          Like

  6. Ahhhh poor Lee. “his brain trying to catch up with his ears..” – Priceless. I did also think Lee was trying to be subtle and probe how Amanda was feeling about him and Amanda lobbed that grenade back to him with pin removed 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Iwsod, It says “yours for mine” in the script.
    The script also gives the English for what the interrogators were saying, so it was relatively easy to translate into the Russian they were speaking thanks to the internet. ;-)Don’t give me too much credit Iwsod. Kiwismh has a very lazy brain and will also look for the easiest way. 🙂
    I thought Lee was fishing for further confirmation that Amanda is thinking about him the way he is thinking about her these days. The rating conversation was too good an opportunity for him to pass up – it gave him the perfect opportunity to ask a seemingly innocent question related to what they were talking about, so it wouldn’t look obvious he was deliberately turning the conversation into personal territory.
    Amanda’s response was more direct and more loaded with innuendo than he expected – I think this kind’ve stunned him for a minute. He’ll be happy when he recovers from the shock. 😉
    The scripted version was really boring and unimaginative, so I’m glad they changed it. The filmed version of the “where’s my contact book” scene was also a lot more imaginative, with Amanda showing more sass than the scripted version. Maybe BB and KJ thought the script needed a little juicing up – so glad they did. 🙂
    Love that Gregory! He might just be my favourite SMK baddy. 😈

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wonder if Lee’s question about rating him was a follow up on this comment of his “…You know if you have doubts you ask questions and you get answers. It gives you a personal stake.” But then I also like the idea that Lee was engaging Amanda in terms of the professional work she was doing. Maybe he was trying to make up for his disparaging comment earlier. Love the look on his face when she answers him.

      And I do like Gregory probably because he is the most developed bady so far. I like the relationship between Billy and he, except I don’t like the way Billy seems to be the underdog all the time.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your thoughts here, Kiwismh! I’ve always found Lee’s line of “how would you rate me?” to be a little contrived, but when you tie it back to (ostensibly) a work-related question (sorta like “let’s see how well you do with rating a a different person like, ummm, me!”) it plays out much better for me. I think the conversation about who was captured, while needed for the plot, has always distracted me from the direction that the “rating” discussion was going. Sorta nice that after the sidebar conversation happens, Lee deliberately, oh so casually, circles back to a ratings question that seems to be on his mind!

      Lee’s comment about someone being a better security risk if they are not perfect makes sense to me. Perfect = suspicious. Imperfect = normal.

      And I can see the part about asking questions causing you to have a personal stake in it, athough I sort of view it as the other way round — if you feel like you have a personal stake in the process, you question what you hear rather just writing it down and moving on.

      I suspect some of the clumsiness of this scene is tied to the observation that it’s off-script. All is forgotten when Amanda gives her cheeky little “Not yet!” (Now if Lee had been in a black jumpsuit while delivering his lines, I would not have even noticed how awkward they were 🙂 )

      And I do love how SMK is playing on the “Wrong Number” theme. They have the wrong number when they think Abernathy is the captive. And of course ratings are all about numbers. (Makes one start to wonder if Amanda has gotten something wrong in her rating!)

      Liked by 1 person

      • LIke what you say here Raffie – after lots of thought, Lee’s ratings question works best for me in a work context. He gets puzzled when Amanda clearly considers it in a personal meaning. And a perfect rating is suspicious – like it was made up. Imperfect is definitely more normal – nobody is perfect.

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