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1-13: "The Colonel" 2013.05.01


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#301

thatguy01

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Posted May 8, 2013 @ 8:12 PM

 With the bolded, I think Philip was just as hurt and unconvinced she really wanted him back. He also asked her in their office if she was okay with him living in the apartment, when she could've just as easily have said she wanted him back, but pretended not to hear that either. Ultimately, Philip had made no secret of his feelings for years, and it was up to Elizabeth to either figure out she returned them or not.

 

 

 

I think Philip didn't doubt she wanted him back.  I believe the issue was that Philip, consciously or unconsciously, wanted her to take responsibility for it.


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#302

Sister Magpie

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Posted May 8, 2013 @ 8:24 PM

I think Philip didn't doubt she wanted him back.  I believe the issue was that Philip, consciously or unconsciously, wanted her to take responsibility for it.

 

 

Yes, and he really was probably right about that. We've been talking about the back and forth and Philip was probably very aware of it too. I think if I'd been experiencing all of that with him I would have felt the same way, that it was just not a good idea to respond to her saying the children needed to feel rooted and a hopeful look. The fact that she was doing it that way was pretty much telegraphing that this wasn't a change, it was a step back to the old way of trying to play it both ways, having the relationship when she wants it and pretending it's a duty when she doesn't. 


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#303

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Posted May 8, 2013 @ 9:36 PM

Right, sorry I wasn't clear. I was alluding to more what Sister Magpie is saying--that Philip was probably aware that she wanted things to revert back to the old arrangement, and maybe even that she missed him and thought she'd made a mistake with the separation. But by "wanting him back" I meant more that she truly wanted him back as a husband and lover and for real this time, no more of the back and forth of having him there for comfort, shared parenting duties and sex when it suited her, then falling back on the "we can't do this because it conflicts with the mission" card whenever she's scared or angry about something he did. I think he had to doubt that the way she wanted him back in that moment was anything more substantial than what he'd seen before--and that wasn't sustainable. They can't keep having such an unbalanced relationship.

 

Thatguy, I agree Philip did want her to take responsibility for it, in that he either wanted her to make the choice she wanted this and to stop using the excuse she'd been forced into an arrangement for the mission whenever she wanted to get out of feelings that scared her, or else keep things the way they were with the two of them living separately--as opposed to flip flopping the kids back and forth every time they got into a conflict. And really, that's the step that Elizabeth had to take for their relationship to get off the ground. Philip's been committed for some time and has shown no sign of wavering, even when things were awful between them.


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#304

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Posted May 8, 2013 @ 11:18 PM

The more I think about Elizabeth steaming when Philip has to go be with Martha, the funnier it gets. I can imagine her persisting for details about the sex, and Philip getting more frustrated with her.  "Look, the last thing I want to do is relive what I'm doing with that woman."


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#305

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Posted May 9, 2013 @ 6:47 AM

The more I think about Elizabeth steaming when Philip has to go be with Martha, the funnier it gets. I can imagine her persisting for details about the sex, and Philip getting more frustrated with her.  "Look, the last thing I want to do is relive what I'm doing with that woman."

 

I think that could be an interesting angle to explore. We've only seen her briefly jealous the once and over a one-time thing versus a honey trap Philip has to carry out indefinitely. If it's taking her husband away multiple nights per week, I could easily imagine some resentment and/or jealousy forming, no matter if she knows it's for the job or not. They've shown them to be mostly indifferent (at least in terms of what they show to the other) to the other having to run honey traps, and it would be interesting if that starts to become less okay as feelings become more real.

 

Though I'm not sure she'd want any details about the actual sex, I could imagine her bugging Philip a little about how much time he's having to spend over there when he would just want to compartmentalize and not think about Martha at all except when he absolutely had to for the job. And while I'm sure Martha will soon pressure "Clark" to start a family and I can't wait to see his and Elizabeth's reaction to that little nugget of information, I hope the show doesn't actually go through with it. Using Martha the way they are is bad enough, but if a pregnancy or baby became involved it would make Philip absolutely hateable.


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#306

Natalie44

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Posted May 9, 2013 @ 8:49 AM

And while I'm sure Martha will soon pressure "Clark" to start a family and I can't wait to see his and Elizabeth's reaction to that little nugget of information, I hope the show doesn't actually go through with it. Using Martha the way they are is bad enough, but if a pregnancy or baby became involved it would make Philip absolutely hateable.

 

I am praying - PRAYING - that Phillip was smart enough to have a vasectomy, given all of his honey traps.


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#307

thatguy01

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Posted May 9, 2013 @ 9:33 AM

I think that sexual/romantic jealousy would be new and uncomfortable for Elizabeth, so I would bet that's where it would go. Philip is romancing Martha the same way that he romances Elizabeth. Elizabeth noticed that Annelise is pretty and teased him a bit that Philip was holding back from telling her.  Elizabeth is missing a lot of emotional experiences that she should have had as a teen.  I could see Elizabeth being curious/jealous enough to pursue the issue to the point that Philip asks her, "Do you have a problem with me working Martha?"  At that point, Elizabeth would deny it and change the subject, like she denied being disappointed that Philip got the apartment.

 

Although Philip now knows that Elizabeth had a long romantic affair with another man, I don't think he would be worried about her feelings for a mark; she sees them as targets and isn't naturally empathetic with them.  He might have learned over the years to wall off his own feelings about Elizabeth being physically intimate with men.  Elizabeth thinks that Philip wants everyone to be his friend, including the FBI agent who shot at them, so she might have some uncomfortable similar feelings about women.


Edited by thatguy01, May 9, 2013 @ 9:52 AM.

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#308

Hal25

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Posted May 9, 2013 @ 10:36 AM

I am praying - PRAYING - that Phillip was smart enough to have a vasectomy, given all of his honey traps.

 

I am right there with you. And frankly, I would find it a little implausible if he hadn't--this is not a man who would be thrilled with the idea of having to leave a string of children behind with random women... there are just no good outcomes if/when a mark were to get pregnant. I could handle it if they had Martha have a little scare--like her period is late and she thinks it, then scares the crap out of P/E, which would bring up all sorts of great stuff, but ultimately isn't pregnant--but I would absolutely hate seeing a ton of focus on a baby--really anyone's baby--on this show, and I think it would destroy Philip's likeability if he had to kill Martha OR abandon a child that was produced by him because of a honeytrap. Just no good options if they go there... and I'm kind of hoping they're smart enough not to given that they've been careful up to this point not to make P/E too unforgiveable, but then who knows...

 

I think that sexual/romantic jealousy would be new and uncomfortable for Elizabeth, so I would bet that's where it would go. Philip is romancing Martha the same way that he romances Elizabeth. Elizabeth noticed that Annelise is pretty and teased him a bit that Philip was holding back from telling her.  Elizabeth is missing a lot of emotional experiences that she should have had as a teen.  I could see Elizabeth being curious/jealous enough to pursue the issue to the point that Philip asks her, "Do you have a problem with me working Martha?"  At that point, Elizabeth would deny it and change the subject, like she denied being disappointed that Philip got the apartment.

 

And that would be a great angle for them to explore. A long-term honey trap would have a very different emotional impact than the relationship with Annaliese, which seems to be sporadic and just an occasional night of hot sex when "Scott" is supposedly in town for his secret Swedish spy work. Much easier to make an excuse and not see her that often because of that particular cover story. But with Martha, Elizabeth may view her as more of a threat, especially since she doesn't have the benefit of seeing that Philip really just seems put out when they have to be together... the imagination can start to wander if given too much opportunity... I hope they do play around with this some. But, I hope we see a different reaction from Elizabeth next season than denial and changing the subject every time. That got very old over the course of thirteen episodes, and I'd love to see some growth from her as she learns to work out conflicts with Philip, rather than just denying it, shutting him out, and/or throwing in the towel.


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#309

Sister Magpie

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Posted May 9, 2013 @ 3:09 PM

I'm hoping they'll be using Martha in interesting ways (rather than interesting positions). She's one of the only relationships on the show that's completely a sham. Philip cares about her in that she's another human being, and presumably does feel guilty about leading her on, but in a way she's always been unique in the way she's presented as such a daily grind. This season she posed very little danger or resistance because she was so open to Clark's wiles, but she's also been incredibly valuable because she's Gaad's secretary.

 

And now they're married, so where does that go? Presumably Martha/Clark can still be a mirror couple to Philip/Elizabeth just like couples like the Beemans are. She can also be a source of information. But I would bet she could also be a source of danger in different ways, and ultimately Philip's going to have to get out of that marriage. The KGB program the Soviets actually had seemed to be a case of agents really getting married to secretaries, but Philip isn't doing that. He's married (err...mostly) to Elizabeth. Clark is a fake person, so he's not really married, which is also why there's a lot of secrecy around it. But that can't last long, especially since as much as Clark might try to impress on Martha how allegedly dangerous it could be for them to get caught, she's never going to understand that real danger. She's already gotten sloppy with her parents--not only did she get sloppy but she surprised him with them. Not only would Martha's home and work life colliding mean that the agents would see Clark, it could bring together Clark with Stan, who could recognize him as Philip. 

 

That could add up to a big case of false security around Martha. I hope she doesn't wind up being just a hate object because she's a danger and a drag, but I think she's definitely going to be a loose cannon.

 

That's what made me think about how it's interesting how the ending montage of the ep started with Martha and ended with Paige. In between we got spies doing spy stuff--Gaad interviewing Prince, Nina with Arkady, Philip and Elizabeth. But the bookends were Martha and Paige, two innocents being duped by the Jennings into believing they're people they aren't, and with whom they're in an intimate relationship. Martha takes out her secret ring and dances around alone, completely happy in her fantasy. Paige stands warily in the empty laundry room feeling like something's not quite right.


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#310

thatguy01

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Posted May 9, 2013 @ 3:35 PM

And that would be a great angle for them to explore. A long-term honey trap would have a very different emotional impact than the relationship with Annaliese, which seems to be sporadic and just an occasional night of hot sex when "Scott" is supposedly in town for his secret Swedish spy work. Much easier to make an excuse and not see her that often because of that particular cover story. But with Martha, Elizabeth may view her as more of a threat, especially since she doesn't have the benefit of seeing that Philip really just seems put out when they have to be together... the imagination can start to wander if given too much opportunity... I hope they do play around with this some. But, I hope we see a different reaction from Elizabeth next season than denial and changing the subject every time. That got very old over the course of thirteen episodes, and I'd love to see some growth from her as she learns to work out conflicts withPhilip, rather than just denying it, shutting him out, and/or throwing in the towel.

 

 

 

Maybe it would be even more fun if Elizabeth believed she didn't have any reason to be jealous of Martha, and still hated the idea of Philip having sex with Martha; I guess it would be more possessiveness than jealousy.


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#311

Hal25

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Posted May 9, 2013 @ 3:45 PM

Another interesting angle it may bring up for Elizabeth is that I don't believe she understands why it is that Philip loves her. She certainly hasn't acted loveable the majority of their marriage--freezing him out, no affection, cheating on him with Gregory, putting a knife to his throat... and yet he clearly does love her and is devoted to her.

 

But then the next obvious question is why. Is it because she's the mother of his children? Because she's pretty? Because they were stuck together in this situation and over time, familiarity turned to something more? I think Thatguy has a good point that because Philip is such a people person, and such an adapter, Elizabeth may nurse some very real fears that if forced to spend so much time with Martha, he might eventually start to feel something for her too, perhaps not love, but some level of it getting too personal. He's clearly let it get a little too personal with Stan, at least in Elizabeth's eyes. The very trait that allowed Philip to leave the memory of Irina behind and genuinely fall in love with Elizabeth could wind up being the thing that also scares her the most in the honeytrap with Martha. That night they were so cold with each other after the interrogation and he asked for jewelry to give to Martha has to sting a little... how quickly she could go from treasured wife he loves to being asked to give up her jewelry on Martha's behalf. Ouch.

 

And if Martha starts pressuring "Clark" for a baby, that infringes on one of the big things Philip and Elizabeth share that no one else does--their shared, unwavering devotion to their kids. She could potentially feel very threatened by the idea of another woman wanting to get her claws into Philip in such a way--particularly as it would mean his loyalty divided away from her and their family. Of course, it doesn't affect what is perhaps their strongest intimacy--that because they're the only two who know they're KGB spies, they have the potential to truly be honest in a way that no honeytrap ever could--but because that piece is also what scares Elizabeth most, I can see her preferring to fixate on the other stuff.


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#312

thatguy01

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Posted May 28, 2013 @ 1:28 PM

http://www.televisio...-the-season.php


Best: The Americans
The Cold War heated up in a big way in the first year finale of FX's '80s spy serial, as Russian covert agent Elizabeth came thisclose to being nabbed by the FBI only to be rescued at the last possible minute by her state-sponsored husband Philip… though he can't prevent her from getting a bullet in the gut. Meanwhile, on the homefront, their precocious teen daughter seemed close to learning the truth about her Mom and Dad. In another three decades, she's gonna be part of a "kids of sleeper agents" support group alongside Homeland's Dana.

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#313

John Potts

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Posted Aug 31, 2013 @ 10:37 AM

Kinda disappointed to hear that Martha will be back - I've never seen the point of marrying her and she seems too much of an idiot for her (relatively) senior job - she's more or less Nina's counterpart and you wouldn't believe she'd be so gullible. But I don't cast the show, I just watch it!

 

But as for this episode, I felt the standout was Arkady. I loved the "I've never heard of this protocol" "That's because I just invented it!" exchange. His carrot & stick approach with Nina was well played, too. I actually think it was making Nina speak the oath last week that brought her back into the fold (though believing Stan killed Vlad(?) certainly helped). Glad to hear that she'll be back anyway - don't have much hope for her "turning" Stan, but It'll be interesting to see how long she could string him along. Granny was great, too (I'll be sorry to see her go) and suitably badass in taking down the CIA guy (I'm sure that was an unauthorised hit).

 

But the heart of the series will always be Philizabeth. Even a cold hearted cynic like me couldn't help but be moved by their reconciliation (and although I'm not a fan of the "personal" stuff, I'd love to see them "renewing their vows" since it works both for their cover and their "real" identities).

 

 

BW Manilowe The scene where Phillip discovers Elizabeth's been shot reminded me, kind of a lot, of the scene in S2 of The West Wing where Ron Butterfield, the President's lead Secret Service Agent, discovers that President Bartlet has, indeed, been shot

 

 

Me too! Amazing what adrenaline will do. I don't know who's meant to have fired the shot, but with all the bullets that were flying it could have been a ricochet off the car door (which was how Reagan was hit IRL).

 

 

Artemis Is it realistic that the Soviets caught on that early about SDI?

 

 

Well, the late Mrs T thought it wouldn’t work, either, saying she knew because she was a scientist (though as her scientific training was in Chemistry, it's doubtful her scientific knowledge really made any difference).

 

 

Jodhaa Calling the FBI agent who almost just caught you? Doesn't make sense to me.

 

 

Or it shows a level of cool that makes Philip a great spy – obviously, if you were a spy the last person you’d ask for a favour would be the FBI officer chasing you.

 

 

 

Hal25 I recall reading the real sleepers this is based on did have a slight accent, but told everyone they were Canadian and most of them fell for it!

 

           

Well, it worked on SG-1!


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#314

Hal25

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Posted Aug 31, 2013 @ 10:58 AM

I don't know who's meant to have fired the shot, but with all the bullets that were flying it could have been a ricochet off the car door (which was how Reagan was hit IRL).

 

You know, I thought about this after it was discussed, and in rewatching the scene, I'm pretty much convinced it couldn't have been anyone but Stan who hit her. There were only three guys firing--Stan and the two agents standing behind them next to the two cars Philip rammed. Those guys had to jump out of the way before Philip rammed the cars, so they weren't in a position to fire when they could've hit Elizabeth in the front of the abdomen. No one was shooting at them from the front other than Stan, which makes sense when you consider he was the only one who really had a straight forward shot. The guys flanking him could've shot at an angle, but not without risking hitting the two agents standing by the cars in the background.

 

Kinda disappointed to hear that Martha will be back - I've never seen the point of marrying her and she seems too much of an idiot for her (relatively) senior job - she's more or less Nina's counterpart and you wouldn't believe she'd be so gullible. But I don't cast the show, I just watch it!

 

Had the same reaction. I could grow to like her again if they smartened her up next season, but right now as presented she seems like a waste of screen time. "To stupid to live" is not a viewpoint I want to spend a ton of time in.

 

But as for this episode, I felt the standout was Arkady. I loved the "I've never heard of this protocol" "That's because I just invented it!" exchange.

 

I had a similar reaction to Arkady after this episode. Before he was always just sort of there. Didn't dislike him, but wasn't terribly invested either, but with this one, they gave him more to work with. Hope we see more development of his character next season.


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#315

Sister Magpie

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Posted Aug 31, 2013 @ 3:35 PM

 

 

Kinda disappointed to hear that Martha will be back - I've never seen the point of marrying her and she seems too much of an idiot for her (relatively) senior job - she's more or less Nina's counterpart and you wouldn't believe she'd be so gullible. But I don't cast the show, I just watch it!

 

 

 

 

I don't get the impression that Martha is anything like Nina's counterpart. Nina is a spy. Martha is, I believe, simply a secretary who works for the FBI.  A secretary to an important person who ought to be far better about safeguarding her boss's activities, but not an agent like Nina is.

 


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#316

John Potts

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Posted Aug 31, 2013 @ 7:46 PM

Nina is an Embassy worker (she will have Diplomatic Immunity) so while she is involved in espionage, I don't think she's ever been trained as a spy, unlike (say) Arkady. Martha is likewise involved in the espionage business but not trained as a spy. Obviously, they're not exactly in the same role, but they're certainly similar. Philip, Elizabeth and Granny (probably) are all undercover operatives, which is a whole different level.


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#317

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Posted Aug 31, 2013 @ 8:17 PM

I'm pretty sure that Nina is KGB, not just a diplomat or clerical staff.  She has access to the most secret KGB resources and she reports directly to Arkady, who is the KGB Rezident; he isn't the Ambassador.



AFAIK, everyone in the embassy is in the country as a diplomat, including the KGB personnel who work in the embassy.  They don't enter the country as "KGB Agent."


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#318

Hal25

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Posted Aug 31, 2013 @ 9:49 PM

I found the whole thing with Nina a little confusing too because I distinctly remember that earlier in the season, she was doing low level clerical type work. Like we saw her preparing tea for meetings. We saw her sit down to take notes at a meeting. We see her filing papers in the office. So while I'm sure Nina is KGB, I'm not convinced she has spy training of any particular depth. And then suddenly she's being promoted to an office and given access to top secret files, which seemed like a big jump from making tea to working with Directorate S. That and the fact that she was busted sending caviar back to the USSR did not lend any strong impression in my mind that she was a spy . . . or maybe she is and just not a very good one?

 

But my memory is a little fuzzy on her scenes, so maybe there's something I'm forgetting.


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#319

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Posted Aug 31, 2013 @ 10:04 PM

My memory of spy novels is that the KGB/CIA agents in the embassy need cover jobs, aside from the people who work in secure communications.  The KGB/CIA doesn't appear on the official roster.  Arkady probably is the Attache for Soviet-American Friendship or somesuch.  Vlad was embassy security, but not openly KGB.  I think they said he was trying to go to med school.


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#320

Hal25

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Posted Sep 1, 2013 @ 7:40 AM

Oh sure. Like, I'm not disputing they all have cover jobs. The part that struck me as surprising (a little) was that like John Potts is saying, early on, Nina appeared to have very much the same role as Martha. She comes to a meeting to take notes. She makes tea for a meeting. She files papers. The sense I got from those scenes was that she was very much an underling in the whole hierarchy of people in the embassy... and then later she's magically promoted to a place where she can get into the Directorate S files. It just had seemed to me that if she actually had a more important role as a spy, they wouldn't have always treated her like she was there to parade about in a pretty skirt and serve tea. Even the way Vasiliy talks to her in that "Ninochtka" voice conveys she's very much an underling, rather than the way he talks to Arkady, which is more as an equal. Now, that could just be a male/female thing, but I really can't remember any time that I thought Nina to be more than just a low level worker, which is why her promotion surprised me.


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#321

Sister Magpie

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Posted Sep 1, 2013 @ 10:41 AM

 

Nina is an Embassy worker (she will have Diplomatic Immunity) so while she is involved in espionage, I don't think she's ever been trained as a spy, unlike (say) Arkady. Martha is likewise involved in the espionage business but not trained as a spy. Obviously, they're not exactly in the same role, but they're certainly similar. Philip, Elizabeth and Granny (probably) are all undercover operatives, which is a whole different level.

 

 

 

 

She has been trained as a spy. She even identifies herself as such to Stan, and as we see later, she gets promoted to a crazy important position. She's on her first mission, I think the writers have said, but she's a KGB officer. I think Hal25 is right in that she gets treated dismissively early on, but in her later interactions with Arkady she definitely seems to have the language of one spy to another down. She doesn't give herself up as an embassy worker, but as a double agent.


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#322

John Potts

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Posted Sep 1, 2013 @ 1:36 PM

 

Hal25  The part that struck me as surprising (a little) was that like John Potts is saying, early on, Nina appeared to have very much the same role as Martha.

 

 

That's exactly what I was saying. I thought that the previous Rezident felt Nina had the aptitude in the espionage field and promoted her into doing espionage work and that Arkady endorsed that decision (which actually worked out well for him as she confessed to what she'd been up to with Stan). But even if she was always been working for the KGB, she's on a different level from Philizabeth (or Granny) as she is listed on the Embassy staff (obviously, it won't be as a spy, but as Aide to the Cultural Attache or something) which means she's untouchable by the US government (all they can do is expel her). Philizabeth have no such cover and are much more highly trained - if they're caught they can be executed and the USSR can (officially) do nothing about it.

 

 

 

 

 


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