Tag Archives: Billy Melrose

SMK How to Be A Spy Part two by Jestress: Your Fellow Agents

(Note about the Notes: These are meant to be notes for a beginning spy to introduce certain concepts of espionage. Since they are based mostly on the world of SMK, do not expect these rules to be useful in real life. They apply only to the Agency. Jestress will not be responsible for any consequences that make occur should any of you try to incorporate these concepts into your daily life. On the other hand, it could be entertaining, and if you’re successful, the CIA, NSA, FBI, MI-5, MI-6, or any number of other fun and interesting organizations or individuals may want to speak to you. But, on your own head be it.)

How to Be a Spy: A special introductory guide for new agents.
Information supplied by Field Section of the Agency.
Contributing Agents:
William Melrose (Head of Field Section, “Lancer”)
Francine Desmond
Lee Stetson (“Scarecrow”)
Amanda King

Part 2
Your Fellow Agents
Support Your Fellow Spies!
Espionage is a business where trust, or the lack of it, is everything. We expect loyalty from our agents – loyalty to our country, loyalty to the Agency, and loyalty to your fellow agents. You need to be able to rely on your co-workers to get the job done, and they need to be able to rely on you. When facing dangerous situations, your second greatest resource, after your own mind and abilities, is your fellow agents.

Working with a Partner
Most of you will eventually be working in a partnership with a fellow agent. Some agents prefer to be “lone wolves” and work by themselves, but there are benefits to having a partner. A partner can back you up in dangerous situations and help make a cover story more convincing. Workloads feel less heavy when they’re divided between two people instead of one person bearing the burden all by himself.

Not only can a partner provided needed help in handling the workload of a case, but they can also provide personal support. Espionage is often a lonely, stressful business. Agents cannot discuss their work with any unauthorized person, even with their families, and having a partner gives you someone to confide in about your missions, work related issues, and even personal feelings about the job, which can help relieve the stress.

Dividing Up the Workload
“We’ve got to divide the work.”
— Lee Stetson, Reach for the Sky

Partners share equal responsibility for the success of their missions. How you divide the workload between the two of you will depend upon each partner’s strengths and weaknesses and the tasks that you need to accomplish. One of the advantages of working with another person is that partners can complement each other. One partner may be a particularly good speaker, someone who is skilled in languages or at playing certain roles. The other partner may be more skilled with weapons, tailing suspects, or interrogation. Together, the two of them can do more than either of them could do alone.

When you are paired with another agent, speak openly about your skills and ask them about theirs. Admitting to weak points needn’t be cause for embarrassment. While you may be less skilled at certain tasks than you would like, your partner will also have weaknesses. It’s best in the long run if partners are weak and strong in different areas so the partnership can have a greater range of skills. Partners who are strong in the same areas have little need of each other, and the other person simply becomes redundant.

Appreciate your partner’s skills and hard work! Remember that when you work as a team, your partner’s accomplishments add to your own. Do everything you can to support your partner’s efforts and add to the success of your team.


Partners and Cover Stories
“Well, it’ll look stupid, me going bowling alone.”
— Lee Stetson, Playing Possum

There are certain types of cover stories that it is impossible to pull off with one person alone. A lone, strange guest at a party would stand out like a sore thumb amid groups of friends and couples. Any cover story involving married couples or romantic partners is absolutely impossible without an appropriate partner. A regular partner can help you with any cover that involves a group activity. Because agents are forbidden to use spouses, girlfriends/boyfriends, family, and friends from outside the Agency as part of their cover for a mission, you will need someone you can count on at the Agency to reliably play the part.




When you work with the same partner over a long period, you begin to get to know the other persons habits, their mannerisms, and the way they think. All of these things can help you when you are forced to ad-lib while playing a cover. Partners who understand each other can communicate information subtly to each other, which can be a great advantage.

Of course, there may be times when you will have to recruit a temporary partner for a cover instead of your regular partner. For example, a partnership of two men wouldn’t be able to pose as a husband and wife or boyfriend and girlfriend. Although you may be accustomed to working with your usual partner and feel comfortable because you know the other person’s skills and habits, working with a temporary partner can be a refreshing change and offer you the chance to develop some flexibility in your own skills.

Providing Backup
“An agent never makes a move without a backup.”
— Lee Stetson, One Bear Dances, One Bear Doesn’t

In this line of work, you will frequently find yourself in dangerous situations, and there are few things more reassuring than knowing that there’s someone trustworthy with you who can watch your back. Partners can watch each other’s backs literally by providing each other with protection and assistance in combat situations.

When providing backup for your partner, communication is key. Ideally, partners should stay together, literally watching each other’s backs. They should discuss their movements ahead of time, as much as possible, so that each of them understands what they are going to do and how they are going to do it. They should also have an emergency plan for if the worst happens and they either have to fight it out or make a run for it. If a situation turns bad, there might not be time to communicate much to your partner, so it’s best if the partners each understand their roles before the mission begins.

Sometimes it is necessary for partners to separate temporarily on a mission. When this happens, communication is even more important. Each partner should understand what they will be doing and what their partner will be doing while they are apart and at what point they will meet up again. If possible, they should also find a way to communicate their status to each other in case of emergency, although that may not be feasible under all circumstances.

If you’re separated from your partner with no opportunity to communicate with them ahead of time, try to leave them a message about what you are doing or where to find you.


Benefits of Teamwork
Francine Desmond: “I like to think of us as one big happy team around here. Sharing in the pain, sharing in the heartache.”
Lee Stetson: “Sharing the credit.”
Saved by the Bells

Partnerships are an extension of the teamwork that is integral to your work at the Agency. Each mission we accomplish is the product of the hard work of many people in different departments throughout the Agency. Field agents depend on Ciphers and Scenarios for cover stories, Cryptology for codes, Research and Development for the equipment we use, and Accounting for management of funds (as well as individual paychecks). Within the department, individual field agents rely on each other for intelligence and support. Most of the time, agents and their partners work in teams with other agents or partnerships of agents, all providing assistance and backup. An individual partnership is much the same, but when you work with one individual for an extended period of time, you come to know the person better than you will know any of your other co-workers.


Your partner may turn out to be the best friend you’ve ever had. They can not only provide backup in dangerous situations but in a more routine way by shouldering their part of the workload, adding credence to their partner’s cover story on a mission, helping their partner to make crucial decisions in difficult situations, and even keeping an eye on their partner’s mental and physical health. As mentioned before, espionage is a stressful occupation. Having someone to share the mental as well as the physical burdens of the job can be a real life saver. Agents who have a reliable partner are less likely to burn out than those who try to go it alone.

Some partners becomes so close that they are almost a second family. In this business, that can be both a strength and a liability. It is a strength in that partners who are close work extremely smoothly together, practically predicting each other’s moves before they make them, and providing emotional support in difficult times, both personally and professionally. However, it can also be a liability because change is a constant in this business. You may not be able to work with the same partner for every mission, and the demands of the job may place you with a different partner. Even worse is the possibility that one of you may not survive a mission. In such cases, the remaining partner feels extreme guilt, even though the loss of their partner was not their fault.

We all know the risks of our profession, and we accept them because we believe that the service we provide for our country is worth the risks. Know that your partner understands the risks as well as you do and accepts them. The purpose of your partnership is to perform your jobs well and to serve your country. Whatever else happens, as long as you both do your jobs to the best of your ability and support each other’s efforts as well as you can, you can consider your partnership successful.

A partner’s a guy who laughs at your jokes, he loans you his socks, and one day, he takes a bullet through the head for you.”
— Lee Stetson, The First Time

Disloyalty and Moles
In a profession where the ability to trust your associates is paramount, there are naturally heavy penalties for disloyalty. Having seen the benefits of working in teams and with partners, you can understand why there is extreme hatred for anyone who would intentionally harm their fellow agents and destroy their work. Dante said that traitors were destined for the lowest circle of hell, and most of your fellow agents would agree with him.

When it appears that someone within your circle of associates is leaking information or actively sabotaging missions, fingers of blame will be pointed in all directions until the traitor is found.

Although anyone could potentially turn into a traitor if offered the right bribe or pressured with the right threats, there are certain characteristics that an inside informant would be more likely to have. We’ll cover two of the most common types:

The “Faithful Servant” Type
The textbook tells us, in situations like this, it’s always someone obscure. . . . Dealing with unimportant information. Always there, but not really doing very much. Pleasant, unassuming, easy to overlook. Loyal, faithful.”
— Francine Desmond, Spiderweb
Like your dog . . .”
— Amanda King, Spiderweb

On the surface, a traitor will act friendly and helpful to gain your trust, but when you consider what they really do and their personal interests, you begin to look at the person behind the façade. They will do their work well enough to remain in good standing with the Agency, but will work on few things of real importance. Mostly, they’re hanging around in the hope of gathering helpful information for the people who are paying them.

They might genuinely believe in the ideals of the people who employ them, or they might be in it just for the money. To find out which it is, you’ll have to take a look both at their bank accounts and expenditures (which may be much higher than they should be for their salary) and at their associates and where they spend their time outside of work.

Part of the difficulty in catching this type of traitor is that they can blend in very well with their surroundings, fitting in with the regular personnel at the Agency. People trust them and often like them, although if you talk to their co-workers, they often know very little about the person’s personal life. This type of traitor is often identified both by the type of job they perform and by their activities outside of the Agency. Often, they clash.

Keep an eye on your co-workers and report anything suspicious, even if it’s someone you ordinarily like. The idea may make you uncomfortable, but the stakes are too high to risk overlooking a possible threat. National security and the lives of you and your co-workers are in danger if one of our people turn against us or if our enemies manage to slip one of their confederates into our midst.

Amanda King: “Well, I’d just like to go on the record as saying that I regard Lee as a friend. And as such, I’m a little uncomfortable in snitching and spying on a friend.”
Francine Desmond: “Oh, don’t be. That is standard operating procedure around here.”
— If Thoughts Could Kill

The Disgruntled Employees
Former agents who have been dismissed from the Agency and agents who are currently dissatisfied with their jobs are always a risk. Sometimes, they are bitter enough to help our enemies, not just for personal gain but for revenge, hoping to do as much damage to their former co-workers as possible. Inwardly, they tell themselves that the Agency is the true traitor for turning against them. If the other side is willing to pay them for their help, it’s just icing on the cake.


Catching this type of traitor involves keeping an eye on current agents whose work as been suffering and have showing signs of emotional disturbance. Sometimes, people who have been reprimanded for performing poorly take it as a personal insult or try to claim that they are being unjustly accused of negligence in their work. These people are vulnerable to outside coercion, and some are angry or unstable enough to seek employment with enemies as revenge for perceived wrongs they’ve suffered at the Agency. They are extremely dangerous because they possess not only inside information about the Agency and it’s mission but because they have direct access to those missions and the agents involved.

The Agency tries to keep track of former agents whose services have already been terminated for the similar reasons, although they no longer have direct access to the Agency or it’s personnel. When they sell their services to an enemy, it’s often their general knowledge of the Agency or the Agency’s personnel that are of interest. Protect yourself and your colleagues by not sharing too much information about your personal life with people who may later turn out to be untrustworthy. Similarly, do not share information about a mission with anyone who is not currently involved with it, especially if that person no longer works for the Agency. Former employment with the Agency and past friendships are not sufficient reasons for putting yourself or your colleagues at risk. Generally, it’s best to spot people who are potential risks early. If you notice unusual behavior from a co-worker or signs of mental instability, report it to your superior as soon as possible.

The Penalties for Disloyalty
Because moles and traitors endanger not only the missions of their co-workers, but their very lives and the safety of their country, the penalties are severe. Sometimes, even the idea of sending these traitors to spend years in prison may seem lenient to the agents who have to ferret them out. Although you may be tempted to take retribution yourself by killing them once you have discovered their identity, we prefer that you apprehend them and/or report them to your superiors. Remember that one of the purposes of the Agency is uphold law and order. We do not condone vigilante justice.

Training New Recruits
It will be the duty of every agent to actively participate on a regular basis in training and screening of new recruits at Station 1.”
— Francine Desmond, quoting from the full field manual, A Class Act

Once you have passed your training and are a full agent, you will be expected to occasionally help train new recruits. It is an opportunity to pass on the skills you have learned and to prepare new agents for the work that lies before them. Their training will be very similar to yours, and you will be expected to give an evaluation of their potential and their progress.

Some of you will be instructors, and some of you will pose as “ringers” – going undercover as trainees in the classes so you can evaluate the real trainees from a different perspective. This is a simple assignment that many regular agents find enjoyable. By posing as a fellow trainee, you can get closer to the trainees, learn more about them on a personal level, and spot potential talents that even their instructors might miss.

By helping to train new recruits, you are helping to shape the Agency’s future and the future of your country!


Outside Confederates
Although most of your work will be done alongside other Agency personnel, there may be times when you will have to work with people outside the Agency. These people may be employees of other government departments or private security firms. You may even find yourself working with agents from other nations allied with ours. The Agency expects all of its personnel to maintain good professional relationship with all of our associates.

Sometimes, you will also be working with people are not security professionals. In this business, you will associate with a wide variety of people, including ordinary civilians in many different professions.

(More about this in Sources of Information – coming soon!)

Special thanks to Learjet for helping me with the posting and to Iwsod for letting me steal borrow her pictures. 😉

Thanks again, Jestress, for sharing this wonderful series of posts with us! Does anyone have any thoughts on fellow agents? Who would you like to work with? Mr Brand or Scarecrow? {Learjet: Scarecrow, Scarecrow!!}We’ll hear more from Jestress soon. Meanwhile, remember to check out the random blog posts which BJo is updating every Tuesday, and comment. Bye!

SMK How to Be A Spy Part one by Jestress: Personal Skills

(Note about the Notes: These are meant to be notes for a beginning spy to introduce certain concepts of espionage. Since they are based mostly on the world of SMK, do not expect these rules to be useful in real life. They apply only to the Agency. Jestress will not be responsible for any consequences that make occur should any of you try to incorporate these concepts into your daily life. On the other hand, it could be entertaining, and if you’re successful, the CIA, NSA, FBI, MI-5, MI-6, or any number of other fun and interesting organizations or individuals may want to speak to you. But, on your own head be it.)

How to Be a Spy: A special introductory guide for new agents.
Information supplied by Field Section of the Agency. Contributing Agents:
William Melrose (Head of Field Section, “Lancer”)
Francine Desmond
Lee Stetson (“Scarecrow”)
Amanda King

Part 1
The Makings of a Spy: Personal Skills and Concepts
If you didn’t have any of these, you wouldn’t be reading this. At this point, you’ve already passed your clearances and begun your training. But, it’s worth reviewing the skills and personality traits that a spy should cultivate. Aside from your patriotism, you should develop mental discipline and strategic thinking. These traits will help you to stay in the proper mindset as you continue your training.

Objectivity and Staying Cool Under Pressure
It’s our objectivity which makes us effective.”
–Billy Melrose, Saved by the Bells

There’s no point in mincing words: you’re going to find yourself in dangerous, even life-threatening situations. In those times, the greatest resource you have is your own mind. Whatever you’re facing, try to remain as calm as possible, and think the situation through. Remember what your priorities are: the successful completion of your mission, your own life, and the lives of your colleagues.

Because the safety your country is always the highest
priority, it’s possible that you or one of your colleagues might have to sacrifice your life to protect the safety of our mission. While we try to avoid such extreme sacrifices, we all know that this is a possibility. No single person’s life is worth the security of a nation of millions of people. In life-threatening circumstances, a cool and objective mind is necessary to evaluate the situation and decide if the sacrifice is truly necessary or if there is another way. Usually, there are other alternatives, provided that you remain clear-headed enough to see them.

You have dedicated your lives to the service of your country. We want you to stay alive and make the most of them.

Thinking On Your Feet
An agent has to think on his feet.”
–Billy Melrose, Ship of Spies

The importance of thinking on your feet cannot be emphasized enough. You never know what life might throw at you on any given day, and in the espionage business, life can be even more unpredictable than usual. Some people might tell you to be prepared for anything, but realistically, there are more possibilities out there than the average person can even imagine. That’s where thinking on your feet comes in. When the unanticipated happens, you need to be able to take in the situation quickly, no matter what it is, and react just as quickly to keep yourself safe and accomplish your mission.

The first step to thinking on your feet is being aware of your surroundings. You can’t react quickly unless you know what’s going on around you at all times. Even when you aren’t facing an immediate problem, take note of your surroundings so that you can notice when threatening figures approach.

Besides being alert to people who are potentially hostile, also note potential allies. Even if no other agents are present on the scene, the presence of law enforcement personnel, security guards, or even ordinary civilians may make hostile agents more reluctant to act. Law enforcement personnel and security guards are likely to be armed and can be active deterrents against violent attacks, but even civilians have their uses and the presence of witnesses tends to discourage open hostility. (Important: Remember that you are the agent in charge on your mission. Recruitment of allies is at your discretion, and you are still responsible for the outcome of the mission.)
Note the objects in your surroundings so that you can be aware of potential obstacles and useful tools. If you need to get away from someone quickly, the last thing you want is to stumble over something lying in your path that you hadn’t noticed before or to end up trapped in a blind alley.

Some objects in your vicinity may be of help to you as well. Almost any object can be a potential weapon that can be used to fend off an attacker (Improvised Weapons by Jestress). Be aware of what is near you and how it may be used to your advantage. Conventional fighting techniques and weapons skills may be used in unconventional ways and with unconventional objects. Be alert to the possibilities!
Keep in mind potential exits that you can use if you need to leave the area in a hurry. Consider possible modes of transportation if necessary.
In general, it’s a good idea to know what is normal for a given area. When you’re on a stakeout or following a suspect, familiarity with the environment will help you to know whether there are people present who aren’t usually there, people absent who are usually present, people who are behaving in unusual ways for the area, important objects that are missing, or objects present which do not belong there. All of this information could be vital to helping you understand your circumstances, spot potential problems before they occur, and respond quickly if the worst happens.

Once you have taken note of your surroundings and are aware of potential threats, you need to be able to respond to them quickly and efficiently. In other words, you’ll act faster than it takes to describe what you’re going to do. Exactly how you react will depend on your circumstances, but being aware of your situation and your options will help you to choose the most helpful course of action. Do not overthink the situation and hesitate. Being active is crucial to preserving your life!

Do Not Let Expectations Get in the Way
“Nothing bad ever happens in the suburbs.”
— Lee Stetson, There Goes the Neighborhood

Even when you are aware of your general surroundings, there may still be moments when you are caught off guard. Your location may seem safe at first glance, but for your own sake, do not assume that it is safe without checking. You may encounter a particularly stealthy attacker or an enemy with an unusually clever disguise. Sometimes, the enemy may turn out to be someone you would usually consider harmless or maybe even someone you thought you could trust. Do not let these preconceived notions get in the way of protecting yourself. Once you detect an apparent threat, don’t let your enemy’s unexpected appearance slow your reflexes.

Is a former ally acting strangely? Find out why!

Is there something suspicious about that nun? Tackle her!

Do you see a little girl running toward you with a gun? Get her before she gets you!

To Move or Not to Move
Remember that the title of this section is Thinking “On Your Feet.” There are times when the best course of action is to pause and take stock of the situation, but in cases of active attack or pursuit, your best option is to keep moving. Remember, a moving target is harder to hit. Keeping in good physical shape will help your reflexes and give you strength and stamina to deal with whatever might come your way.
“Fight or Flight” are the usual reactions to a dangerous situation – either fight back or get away as quickly as possible. Which you choose depends on your circumstances, your opponent, and your own personal skills. Try to maintain a realistic view of all of these. When you’re outnumbered, fighting against an enemy with superior strength or skill, or facing someone who is just better armed, running is your best option. Get to a safe place and call for backup.

Just remember to keep your mind working at the same time as you move, being aware of your surroundings and potential sources of help.

We don’t need any dead heroes.”
— Billy Melrose, DOA: Delirious on Arrival

Fast Talker
Fight or Flight is not your only option. If you encounter someone who is somewhat suspicious of you but not actively hostile, you may be able to talk your way out of the situation. Keep your cover story in mind and stay in character. If you can establish in the other person’s mind that your actions are in keeping with your character and your character’s purpose, you may be able to lay their suspicions to rest without having to use force or abandon your current location. (Although, talking fast may enable you to abandon your current location, if necessary.)

Take Advantage of Opportunities
Taking advantage of opportunities goes hand-in-hand with thinking on your feet. It’s helpful in situations where you need to make a quick attack or a fast getaway, and it can also help in more subtle ways, such as examining a place as thoroughly as possible when you have the opportunity to be there and talking with a person who may be significant when you have the chance, even if it wasn’t planned.

Never pass up the opportunity to make connections with people whose skills may be useful or to learn new skills yourself.

Helpful Skills
Although the Agency will train you in all of the essential skills you will need to complete your missions, you should continue to improve yourself and take advantage of every opportunity to learn new skills that may be helpful to you later.

Foreign Languages
Learning a foreign language is always useful. Many of our agents can speak multiple languages. You may decide to specialize in one particular language or a certain region of the world. Some of you may think it isn’t necessary because your role at the Agency requires you to spend most of your time in the office or because you act in an auxiliary capacity to a higher-ranking agent, but it doesn’t hurt to understand at least a few basic phrases in another language even for short trips overseas. Otherwise, you may find yourself in a jail in Germany and only knowing how to say “edelweiss.”

(Amanda King’s Note: Very funny, Lee.)
Francine Desmond’s Note: It kind of was.)
Billy Melrose’s Note: Stay on task people.)
Amanda King’s Note: This will be removed from the final draft, won’t it, Sir?)
Billy Melrose’s Note: Yes, don’t worry.)
Francine Desmond’s Note: Aww!)
At the moment, Russian is one of the languages that is most in demand. The Agency’s language tapes are available to any agent and include helpful everyday phrases, common code phrases, and phrases that can be useful distractions such as “The Red Chinese have taken Vladivostock!”

Combat and Self Defense
Know Your Weapons
Your primary weapons will be various types of guns, and the Agency requires that all field agents pass our courses in gun safety and target practice. You will not be issued an Agency-owned weapon until you earn a passing score and the approval of your instructor.
The Agency also offers classes in fencing, knife fighting techniques, and hand-to-hand combat. You are encouraged to attend as many of these classes as possible. While you will not become a master of all weapons, it is helpful to have a general knowledge of different fighting techniques.

Martial Arts
The Agency provides lessons in various types of hand-to-hand combat, and all field agents are required to pass qualifying tests at regular intervals. While guns are considered a necessary tool of the trade, every agent should know how to defend himself or herself even when unarmed. You never know when or where you might need these skills.
You are encouraged but not required to go beyond even the basic training and to be proficient in more than one type of unarmed combat. Some of you will become more proficient than others, and some of you may even achieve mastery. Certain past agents and their associates have even created their own unique fighting styles and moves.

Dancing might not be one of the first skills that comes to mind of when you think of espionage, but the ability to mix with other people in a variety of social situations is useful. When you’re meeting a contact at a party, it looks a little suspicious if you don’t dance, mingle with the other guests, or appear to be having a good time.

The Rules and When to Break Them
”In order to survive in this business, one must always expect the unexpected.”
— Francine Desmond, A Class Act

Rules weren’t made to be broken, but there may be times when you will have to make your own decisions based on the circumstances around you. The field manual is meant to provide guidelines, and certain rules are more important than others. You should always respect the chain of command and follow the orders of your superiors, but if there’s one constant in this business, it’s that unexpected things happen.

There may be times when you’ll have to deviate from your superior’s orders in order to save lives or accomplish your mission. Your superiors may not be fully aware of your situation because there may not be time to notify them of new developments before you need to take action. Just be aware that you will always be held accountable for your actions and will have to bear the consequences of them, especially if you are wrong.

Thanks for sharing Billy, Lee, Amanda and Francine’s insights, Jestress. Comments and questions will be directed to Jestress, our expert on spy skills smile. Jestress will be back with Part 2 next week!

SMK Disguises part one: Francine, Billy and Emily

welcome Welcome to the first of a series of posts showcasing the highlights (and lowlights!) of the fashions of SMK. I’ll be swimming in the shallow end of the SMK pool – nothing deep and meaningful here; just a bit of fun. Plus I am the world’s most unstylish person, but I am opinionated. Feel free to be rude about my taste (or lack thereof). I’ll include a few polls so you, Iswod’s wonderful readers, can vote for your favourite fashion horrors (and best moments).

Thanks to Iwsod for allowing me to “host”  this series of posts and to KC for technical advice and being a sounding board for me.

Initially, I’ll be covering seasons one and two. And to start off: two posts on the disguises and uniforms of SMK. The second post will cover Lee’s uniforms and disguises. But hold onto your helmets for that second post, because first I’m covering disguises used by three other SMK characters. As Miranda would say on with the show:

First up is Francine dressed up as Amanda in Filming Raul – or what she calls “suburban frump”. Curlers under a headscarf. Lovely….Meanwhile, back in the car  driving , Lee and Amanda are having a ‘steamy’ blush moment .


Next is Francine in Spiderweb as the ticket seller at the theatre. Did ticket sellers wear outfits like that in the 1980s? Anyone remember? Anyway, it’s a good look for her. Even with her snarky facial expression. And those big bows were very popular. (Worryingly, I’ve seen a few similar bows in Australian mothers’ hair recently yuck  – in pale florals!)


In, Life of the Party, Francine (rather unsuccessfully) is forced to get in touch with her domestic side: first as a maid. Look at those heels. Perfect for stamping on a baddie’s instep; not so good when whizzing around with the vac (does she realise that’s a vacuum cleaner?) And later as a waitress. I have to say, I like the refined French plait compared to her usual “styles”.

S2E16_maid_Francine   S2E16_waitress_disguise_Francine

Next Billy! And as far as I am aware, the only time we see Billy in “deep” disguise as an African dignitary (Mr Ngamo) in the same episode. Why didn’t they get MS to do more of this type of thing? His facial expressions and hand gestures are hilarious.

S2E16_African_official_disguise_Billy   S2E16_African_official_disguise_kiss_Billy

His bottle shop owner in The Three Faces of Emily is too similar to his normal outfit to merit more than a brief mention here…I’m more interested in the age of that cash register. Was that a mid-eighties cash register? Had it been in the shop for 20 years before it was seconded by the Agency as “retail” grouping furniture?


Then there is Dotty as “Mrs Marston” and Phillip and Jamie as intelligence operatives at The Agency in Amanda’s “dream” in Delirious on Arrival – OK they weren’t in disguise, they were “real” in Amanda’s chicken-sandwich-poisoned brain.

S2E19_Dotty_as_MrsMarston How long did BG spend in the hairstylist’s chair having her hair “set” to achieve that hairstyle (and how many cans of hairspray did it take?).





I think Jamie makes a more earnest spy than Phillip – Phillip with his snazzy hairstyle and jacket over his shoulder looks like a mini-playboy (Mini-Lee?).


No post on disguises would be complete without Lady Emily Farnsworth and her “three faces”. Except I found four faces (other than her “normal” face). Am I having problems counting crazy ?

Here is the “real” Emily, intelligence operative posing as evening party guest.

S2E11_Normal_Emily  S2E11_Normal_Emily_full

First is her KGB interrogator look: it’s all about the posture and the facial expressions: I’d be pretty scared if I was a baddie:


Then she’s a rich old lady choosing paint with her personal assistant (Lee – pictured in next post). She just can’t decide what colour to choose (and she doesn’t like any of the options in the hardware store) but she manages to keep an eye on Amanda. Love that hat… and the glasses make me remember my mum’s  in the 80s.


Her next look is a bit of a come down: maid Emily-style. She looks more comfortable with the equipment than Francine does wink (plus I’m sure she’s wearing comfortable shoes – maybe a certain brand as Amanda favours??)


Finally, Emily’s best disguise: the homeless woman (bag lady?) in the above-mentioned bottle shop. Is that an old-style tea cosy on her head? I gather her outfit was sourced from the 70s (the unremitting brownness). S2E11_homeless_disguise_Emily  S2E11_homeless_gloves_Emily

Now for the vote. Who’s your favourite?

That’s all for the first disguise post. Please vote and let us know which is your favourite!! Anything I’ve missed out on? Comments and suggestions are very welcome!  Bye until Lee in Part 2 wave.