3/14 Season Three, Episode 21: Three Little Spies-Scarecrow and Mrs King

Hello again! Where were we.. Oh yes, Lee, Chang and Petrovich moved into another part of the plane’s cabin. Looks like Billy and Francine haven’t left yet.
Billy picks up a print out.
3.21 TLS.avi_000520020
Lee is very antsy, not happy to have these two agents in ‘his’ plane I guess..
Lee: Ahem, you’ll be briefed on the console later.
Chang: That won’t be necessary, Mr. Stetson. I’m fully checked out with the L-7 system.
3.21 TLS.avi_000526626
Billy watches on with interest.
3.21 TLS.avi_000528628
Lee: Oh, how can you be? 3.21 TLS.avi_000529229
Petrovich: There are not so many secrets, Scarecrow!
3.21 TLS.avi_000533033
: Lot number 67281 of Ron’s Mom’s Cornbread Mix…was apparently manufactured January 15th at a mill in Des Moines, Iowa. 3.21 TLS.avi_000535835
[Love computer displays! Always interesting! Looks like Francine has Zulu Blue 6 alpha clearance Smile ]
Lee: Looks like it was shipped to a Denver distribution.
3.21 TLS.avi_000555522
: Yeah, and then it was donated to an international relief organization called Food for Flight, headquartered in Los Angeles. And it looks like Randall Skylar is the man to see.
Billy: There you have it gentlemen. Your destination is Los Angeles…
3.21 TLS.avi_000559926
You’ll be airborne in ten minutes.
3.21 TLS.avi_000560527
I’ll coordinate support logistics including cover. Miss Desmond will begin a dossier on Food for Flight. Make yourselves comfortable. And good luck!
3.21 TLS.avi_000568935
Petrovich: Thank you!
Chang: Thank you!
Billy is all smiles, everyone disperses… except Lee! He’s staring down Petrovich!
3.21 TLS.avi_000572939
Petrovich wordlessly passes Lee. LOL you can just sense the cabin is full of testosterone!
3.21 TLS.avi_000576343
Lee continues to watch Petrovich walk on..
but is interrupted by Billy.
Billy quietly: You can handle this, Scarecrow. Just make yourself dispassionate. Keep yourself above it!
3.21 TLS.avi_000580947
Lee: Heh! (Lee kind of sniffs in response!)
Billy quietly:
And remember what’s on the line here!
[Ummmmm Lee’s ego?]
3.21 TLS.avi_000584150
(Lee’s cheek muscle is tensing away!)
Lee: Yeah!
3.21 TLS.avi_000585151
Lee responds not very determined, I think he’s still wishing he wasn’t there and is struggling to remember what’s at stake..
Lee walks off. Billy looks… what do you think… concerned?
3.21 TLS.avi_000587554
We find Amanda waiting behind Lee.
She gives Lee an encouraging smile and nod as he passes.
3.21 TLS.avi_000588755
Billy: Amanda? (Billy calls Amanda over to him)
Amanda: Yes sir?
3.21 TLS.avi_000594160
Billy: I don’t think I have to tell you how important you are going to be to this assignment… [Oh go ahead, tell us! I love to hear someone actually acknowledge how important Amanda and what she brings to the party is!]
3.21 TLS.avi_000596963
[I have no idea why but so far, much of Amanda is blurry and soft focus! Were they filming her with a different lense? It’s annoying!]
3.21 TLS.avi_000597163
…Lee has trained for years developing finely tuned instincts and every one of them will be telling him to get the best of Petrovich and Chang before they get the best of him. 3.21 TLS.avi_000603770[Hmmm… interesting way of putting it. I can only imagine it’s the same for Petrovich and Chang]
Amanda: Yes sir, but he’s very responsible.
3.21 TLS.avi_000605572
Billy: Responsibility isn’t the question. Self-control is.
[LOL now this is genius! And so true! Mr Self-control certainly lacks it at times lol! I love that Billy actually says this out loud Winking smile I’ll just gloss over the whole idea of a top spy lacking self-control is a bit of an oxymoron! (IMHO)]
Amanda: Yes sir!
3.21 TLS.avi_000611978
Billy: You know him better than any of us. Use your instincts…3.21 TLS.avi_000612178
…Keep him on an even keel. [instincts?.. meh. use your wisdom and knowledge Amanda!]
Amanda: Yes sir, but I really don’t think there’ll be any problem. 3.21 TLS.avi_000615782
[Wow. well she is certainly defending Lee.. what do you guys all make of Amanda here?!
I’m sure Billy wishes he could be so confident!
Lovely to hear Billy acknowledge that Amanda knows Lee better than even himself!!! Phew.. have we ever heard Billy say that??!!!]
Billy: Well, if this task force falls apart so will our relationships with every super power that has the bomb. It might be the beginning of something we might not be able to control.
3.21 TLS.avi_000625258
[i.e. Yo this is serious! Winking smile ]
(Blurry) Amanda pauses a moment and responds seriously: Yes sir!
3.21 TLS.avi_000627861
(Billy walks off and Amanda is left pensive, but determined)
3.21 TLS.avi_000631064
[at least I think so.. what do you think?]
The scene ends here.. very ominous…  whoooo will Lee start another war with his short temper and lack of self control?
Actually, when  I think about it like that, it’s kinda laughable! but.. hey.. let’s go with it! In smk land you just never know when someone will get dumbed down! Right people? Winking smile tee hee..

Moving on.. the plane is now airborne.3.21 TLS.avi_000646079 Back on the plane, we find Chang walking past Amanda who is sitting down reading. As he walks past Chang says: How are you Mrs. King?
Amanda: Just fine. Thank you, Mr. Chang
(Lee follows behind Chang)
3.21 TLS.avi_000649082
LOL I think Amanda has her seat belt fastened. So Amanda!
Lee: Hey, Chang. You, uh, forgot these.
3.21 TLS.avi_000652085
Lee is holding something in his hand.
3.21 TLS.avi_000655088
Chang: I don’t believe those are mine. 3.21 TLS.avi_000658091
(Chang gets a similar packet out of his own pocket)
[Ah I think it’s a packet of cigarettes]
Lee: Oh really? Well, I guess the bug that was inside isn’t yours either…
3.21 TLS.avi_000661695
…I’ll just have to keep an eye on it till someone claims it.
3.21 TLS.avi_000663897(Chang puts a cigarette in his mouth and shakes his head)
Chang: How considerate.3.21 TLS.avi_000668101
(Chang takes the cigarette out of his mouth and walks away)
3.21 TLS.avi_000668902
Lee looks pretty happy with himself. LOL.
3.21 TLS.avi_000670103
Lee: Yeah!

We find Petrovich to the side watching this little exchange. What’s he doing? Why, he’s Russian! He’s playing chess of course! rofl!!!
3.21 TLS.avi_000672906
(He motions to Lee to come over. Lee joins him. )
3.21 TLS.avi_000679713
[we get a better view of the cabin interior.. grey! lots of grey!!!]
(we also see Chang light his cigarette. LOL I guess this was the 80s and you could smoke on planes.. )

Petrovich: Our friend Chang still has his little bug collection I see. 3.21 TLS.avi_000680714
Lee: He’s got more bugs than the Mormons had locusts
3.21 TLS.avi_000683116
[Melissa R (transcriber) shares with us: I researched this and Mormon legend is that in the 1st year of the Mormon Settlement in Utah, a plaque of locusts or Mormon crickets threatened to wipe out their crops. But God responded with a ‘miracle’ by sending an army of seagulls to devour the insects.]
Petrovich finds Lee’s snark amusing. As if a Russian would know about the Mormons and locusts?! haaa.. oh whatev.
3.21 TLS.avi_000685719  (Lee points at the chess game – which seems to be underway already..)
Lee: May I? 3.21 TLS.avi_000688722
Petrovich: Of course. I have asked about this Food for Flight organization… 3.21 TLS.avi_000689923
…I’m told it’s a group of decadent Americans…
3.21 TLS.avi_000691925
…trying to exploit the starving victims of American imperialism… [Kapow-vich!]3.21 TLS.avi_000699132
Petrovich moves a chess piece (figuratively and literally Winking smile ) and takes one of Lee’s pawns.
3.21 TLS.avi_000700734
3.21 TLS.avi_000701601
I’m no chess expert by the way. Anyone who is? go for it and share your insights with us please! Smile
Lee: That’s funny. Washington tells me they’re a dedicated group of Americans…
3.21 TLS.avi_000706806
…trying to feed and care for the starving victims of Soviet political agitation. [Kaaaaaaa-pow!]3.21 TLS.avi_000712812
…Sure makes you wonder, doesn’t it?
Petrovich: Hmmm…
(Petrovich is still amused)..
3.21 TLS.avi_000713813
Lee makes his next chess move..
3.21 TLS.avi_000716616
He silently pauses for extra Kapow effect..
Lee: Checkmate.
Lee can beat a Russian at chess? really? Not bad for a scarecrow! Smile 
3.21 TLS.avi_000718818
Petrovich seems to take a moment to register, and Lee walks off. 3.21 TLS.avi_000721821
[anyone able to follow these chess moves and fill us in?] It looks like Petrovich goes back to his book there – like it’s a book about being a chess master or something!
So far it seems Lee has bested both Chang and Petrovich.. I guess he is sending the message: don’t mess with me.
I’ll pause here before one of these three little spies makes their next move.. or takes someone’s pawn.. or something!

Anyone got any thoughts or comments on this section so far?

26 responses to “3/14 Season Three, Episode 21: Three Little Spies-Scarecrow and Mrs King

  1. I recently re-watched this episode with my boys, and for the first time, we noticed that none of the conference table chairs on this airplane are affixed to the floor! We laughed and laughed, thinking about how they must fall all over the place at takeoff and landing. Similarly, chess is a pretty risky game to play while in the air. What if you hit a pocket of turbulence and your pieces fall everywhere? A magnetic chessboard would work, but this one that Lee and Petrovich are playing on definitely is not made for travel. LOL..

    Liked by 1 person

  2. just a little comment on the Mormon locust comment. my take on this is there must have been an LDS (mormon) writer on this episode. Mormons are suckers for being mentioned in TV. Weird, I know. Don’t judge ha ha! If a reference is made, we tell everyone about it. So I’m sure it was more for that angle. And, because of this miracle, Utah’s state bird is the seagull. And another side note, Sam Melville was Mormon. He served a mission in France, same as my parents, just a bit later than they did. So there’s some Mormon trivia for you – Mormons are suckers for good wholesome shows that reference them. ha ha


  3. “I have no idea why but so far, much of Amanda is blurry and soft focus! Were they filming her with a different lense? It’s annoying!”

    Maybe? Why not? I wonder if they really did that on purpose. Plus she is wearing one of her fuzzy sweaters.
    Now you may read this as sexist – maybe it is – in the best sense of what sexism is. And I wonder if that may even be part of the theme of this episode. There is a difference between the sexes and that is why both must work together. We can see what these men would be up to on their own ( I know it is exaggerated), maybe the presence of these women may help balance things out? Maybe Amanda having a softer outline may be on purpose??? (although I doubt it. Its our clearer viewing that probably points that out to us). But you all know me… I have got to play with it all.


  4. Okay, I missed a couple of posts. We had a water main pipe break at school and it’s been crazy so I haven’t been able to keep up.

    For some reason when it just hit me about Chang’s L7 system comment. As a child, when someone said someone was L7 that meant they were a square-meaning old-fashioned or traditional. And the hand-sign for it means shooting film or taking pictures. Maybe that was an Easter egg or an inside joke.

    I think the chess game is appropriate given the nature of these spies working together. Chess is an intellectual and strategic game. One wonders what game may be afoot with these spies.

    I like Billy’s conversation with Amanda. It shows that he knows just how difficult this will be for Lee and how much he trusts Amanda to help Lee through it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • And the chess game is symbolic as Lee beats Petrovich at his own game, quite literally. It again shows the struggle for dominance that is going on among the men. It seems to me that such a struggle is counter-productive, especially when the mission at hand is securing world peace. More symbolism!


  5. Not much to add here, I am loving all the commentary.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m no chess expert by the way. Anyone who is? go for it and share your insights with us please!

    In chess, when a king pawn is in check, it’s in threat of being captured. it can be moved out of that ‘check’ and go back into play. In checkmate, there are no more legal moves, the king is captured and the game is over. I know the different pawns, movement of each piece and have tried to learn the game, but I’m still horrible at it.

    I like how the two of them carry on their casual conversation while keeping focus on the game. Often you see two players so deeply focused you could hear a pin drop in the room.


  7. Love this little talk between Billy and Amanda. It is really nice to hear Billy’s admissions to Amanda – now we know why Billy has assigned her to this case. I think this is the first time we’ve heard Billy speak to Amanda so openly like this and with such praise and confidence in her ability. He certainly seems to have more confidence in Amanda than in Lee!

    Top spy and chess master? Hmmm, seems a bit farfetched for Lee to me. Then again, even a blind squirrel finds a nut in the forest every once in a while.

    Liked by 4 people

  8. “You know him better than any of us” I love that statement from Billy. It makes me smile every time I hear it.
    And that Mormon comment from Lee- what was that about?! Such a weird thing to say to a communist Russian spy. What would he know about Mormons? That never made any sense to me. Thanks for the note on its actual meaning.

    Liked by 3 people

    • That comment from Billy made me smile too. I came here to mention that too and I see I’m not alone. 🙂

      About Lee’s Mormon comment… Maybe he heard that while in conversation with one of his sources and it stuck with him? I think Lee’s the type that learns more from engaging in conversations with others, especially those he finds interesting.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve always thought that Mormon reference was a little obscure, too. Yes, Lee does seem like the type that would pick things up in conversations with others, maybe because as a spy, powers of observation and memory are critical for survival! The other thing I think of is that in Remembrance of Things Past, Lee was seen to be passing the time in his apartment reading a book on Stalin. Business, to be sure, but that led me to suspect that Lee’s reading choices tended to be on the scholarly side. Not sure if there are any other episodes where we get other glimpses to support or refute that theory.

        Liked by 3 people

  9. The political byplay in this scene is so fascinating given all the heightened emotions at the time with things like the Iran-Contra affair going on in the background along with recent history in places like Grenada (Yes, rookie agents, Grenada was recent history at that time! And what’s more, aid groups were indeed used to great political effect by both sides) but It is that conversation between Billy and Amanda that really catches my eye.

    He repeats the phrase “instincts” first to describe why Lee is going to be extra bolshy on this one and then again to tell Amanda to use hers to know when Lee’s gone too far or perhaps not far enough. His tone of voice isn’t one of paternalism asking the little mother to look after Lee but one of a concerned boss who knows that this is the kind of situation that Lee might over react to due to past events and that he knows Amanda will remain professional enough to keep him on an even keel. Billy certainly doesn’t downplay that Lee’s instincts are probably right – more like that at least the image of cooperation has to be there so that no country goes home nursing a grudge that could result in WWIII.

    And who knows? Perhaps it was something one of these two did that caused the death of Lee’s last partner? He has not reacted to other agents this badly before, not even Gregory so there must be some serious tension here.

    Excuse me, I feel a fic coming on – I should go lie down and let it stew for a while.

    Liked by 6 people

    • wonderful and fascinating insights – I enjoyed reading your thoughts janet! good catch on the ‘instincts’ twice referred to!!

      I think if the death of Lee’s partner was caused by Chang or Petrovich it would have been the first thing Lee mentioned back in the bullpen… I didn’t get the vibe that it was quite that personal.. but yeah I’d agree they have somehow in Lee’s history betrayed Lee or bested in him in some way..

      Hey how about Petrovich is the Russian who robs Billy and steals the fake Falcon Ving (Wing) plans in 3 Faces of Emily (and Amanda’s purse while he’s at it?!) I love the idea of characters crossing paths numerous times throughout!

      Yeah the history with Gregory is more between Billy and Gregory – but I suspect Billy would be better able to put his personal feelings aside and work with Gregory if the president ordered it. Billy is more pragmatic than Lee.. Lee is a bit idealistic at times (maybe he hasn’t been able to get rid of that pesky tendency – I’m pretty sure he has tried 😉 )

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I don’t know how many viewings of this episode it took for me to “get” why Lee was giving Petrovich that testosterone-enhanced evil eye after Petrovich said, “There are not so many secrets…Scarecrow…” LOL — love it!! The Russians are not supposed to know that Lee Stetson is the Scarecrow. Based on Chang’s reaction (or lack thereof), I suspect that he too already knew this. Petrovich has just one-upped Lee big time in front of an audience that includes other spies plus Billy and Amanda and Francine. I love that the male posturing here is both mental (verbal) and physical. They remind me of a pack of male dogs trying to establish who is alpha. Not a very endearing quality, and one that could rapidly get tiresome.

    So it’s Petrovich 1, Lee 0 as the chess game is played. Lee literally beats the Russian at his own game. LOL again at Petrovich picking up the chess book after Lee checkmates him! Thinking Lee deserves 2 points for that victory!

    And I do also love the political commentary built into the discussion between Lee and Petrovich about Food for Flight. The Russian point of view is one of suspicion and scorn while the American point of view is one of freedom and altruism. Sadly, this total disconnect of perspectives between the two countries back in the 80’s makes me think of the disconnect America is seeing today between its own two parties :-(.

    And finally seeing Chang makes me want to add that I am sooooo glad people are no longer allowed to smoke in planes, restaurants, etc.

    Liked by 5 people

    • It always fascinates me that it’s supposed to be his code name but everyone knows it – even the guys who kidnapped Amanda knew everything about him – except of course the important part about his gender. 😀

      It always makes me laugh when they tell us the Secret Service code names for POTUS and FLOTUS in press interviews – seriously what’s the point of calling it a code name?

      Liked by 2 people

      • It always fascinates me that it’s supposed to be his code name but everyone knows it – even the guys who kidnapped Amanda knew everything about him – except of course the important part about his gender.

        Exactly! For me, I didn’t take the use of ‘scarecrow’ as being Petrovich making a point, because to me everyone (wrongly) knows scarecrow’s code name/real name.. so that little dig was pretty lost on me!

        rofl.. very true calgjanet! it’s when a code name just becomes a nickname.. uh oh.. and Lee’s is scarecrow?! tee hee..

        Liked by 1 person

        • Yeah, I thought that after WOTSTW, the Russians would have known Lee was Scarecrow? Didn’t the Tin Man turn over or work for the Russians? Maybe that memo never made it’s way around the KGB?

          Liked by 2 people

          • I’m pretty sure POTUS & FLOTUS aren’t for code as much as just a way of abbreviating on the White House computer system. I think I remember reading that in a Secret Service agent memoir but I’m not positive. Dennis McCarthy or Joe Petro’s probably. The actual First Family code names change with each family and are always alliterated. For example the Kennedys all had Ls. Jackie was Lace, JFK was Lancer, and I can’t remember what the kids were. (I’ve often wondered if Billy getting the code name Lancer had anything to do with a Camelot reference) They aren’t officially classified — in fact there was a website that had a whole list of them I found once. They’re primarily for radio calls. Since radio traffic is less secure, you can say “Lancer” and nobody knows who exactly you’re talking about. (Although they aren’t used as much nowadays)

            Which makes me wonder if that’s what the Agency Code names are primarily for as well. KGB higher-ups might have a list of everyone, but your average KGB agent probably won’t have every American listed. So when you hear “Go” or “Scarecrow” on the radio, they don’t know which agent they’re going to be dealing with necessarily. Plus, like in the military, it makes radio calls much simpler. The Secret Service, for example, had three agents with the last name McCarthy at the time of the assassination attempt on Reagan — two by the name of Dennis and one named Tim. And on The First Time, one of the agents killed was named Fielding, but we also have an Agent Fielding referenced on Waiting For Godorsky, plus Fred Fielder. So that could create a headache if it’s “Fielding here.” (And as someone who’s been stuck using radios, they are NOT as clear as T.V. would make them sound, so that would be a big issue).


So what do you think??? :)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.