14 November, 2013

The Plopper Reviews - COVERT AFFAIRS 4.15: 'There Goes My Gun'

So wait … what is Annie’s new plan now then??  What is she planning on doing now that she’s let herself get captured by Henry ... just sweet talk him into coming back to the U.S. so they can prosecute him?  I suppose we’re not supposed to understand it till next week.

The end with Henry and Annie coming face to face was a pretty fun moment.  I’m starting to form a theory though, on a key reason why this season has been so frustrating to many of us.  I’ve seen people online consistently complaining that they are sick to death of Henry, and begging the CA powers-that-be to just kill him already.  And I certainly can’t blame them; it has gotten tedious.  But I had to question why that is, because I was totally thrilled when I found out Covert was doing one long story arc this season.  I still think that was the right choice.  And I also have no issue at all with a season-long “big bad,” as long as the big bad is interesting and as long as the overall storyline is compelling.  And Henry absolutely was an interesting character ... he still continued to be for the first 6 eps of this season.  So what happened, and what is the problem then at this point?

Here’s my theory.  The progress that Annie and team have made against Henry from start to near-finish of this season has been soooo slow going, and they’ve made soooo many screw-ups along the way, that ... well that in itself is frustrating enough to watch.  But add to that the fact that as these guys have screwed up with Henry over and over, we’ve also had to watch as every single major character has colossally fucked up their lives worse and worse, and just when you thought they couldn’t fuck it all up worse ... WORSE.  ALL of this in pursuit of this seemingly endless chase into oblivion.

In a sense I get it, because in real life, this isn’t something that would be easy.  This IS something that would totally fuck up your life if you tried to accomplish it.  And I can definitely appreciate that this is what the writers were going for.  But the ways in which these characters have permanently screwed up their lives as it’s gone on and the straight-up idiotic decisions they’ve had to make to get there in many cases is problematic for me as viewer.  I don’t want to be constantly yelling at the screen, “NOOOO, what the hell are you thinking!?  WHY are you acting like such a dumbass!!” ... for the entire season ... over and over again.  There’s only so much I can take as a viewer before I lose respect for these characters.  And the fact that at some point Henry seemed to move from a 3 dimensional person to something uncomfortably close to a comic book villain certainly has not helped either.  I could go on about that issue too, but I won’t.  I was just thinking about this stuff for my season finale review next week, and the way Henry and Annie basically came full circle at the end of this ep made me figure that now is as good a time as any to talk about this stuff.

So what about this ep?  Well ... it was fun ... the Hong Kong setting was super cool of course.  Pretty sure they’ve never gone to Asia to film before.  I went to Hong Kong once when I was 15 and now I just want to go back.  The best thing about the ep might have been Oliver, actually.  I don’t necessarily know that it’s a good thing if may favorite part of an episode is the guest star.  But hey, it's something.  We had Oliver to keep us going.  He’s pretty damn hot and he kept me interested the whole time he was on screen.  I wanted to know more about him, which is rare for me with a random guest character.

Watching Team “Walderson” get foiled yet again by Henry was frustrating as hell, but it’s to be expected with the penultimate episode of the season.  They can’t catch Henry now, otherwise they wouldn’t have anything to do in the finale.  The episodes towards the summer finales and fall finales tend to sometimes feel too rushed to me in terms of the writers trying to accomplish too much in too short a time (see: eps 4.07-10 and the last few eps of S3), but I actually felt that the pacing of this ep was good.  It didn’t feel rushed, and most of the storyline felt pretty logical, all things considered.  I wondered for a sec how the hell Team Walderson had such specific time/location info on the courier’s meet for the brush pass right at the beginning of the ep, but, duh – Joan gave them all that info last week.  I wasn’t paying attention to those details then because they weren’t that important yet.  Heh.

In terms of Annie and Auggie, the characters are currently working fine for me apart from each other.  It's when we get specific "A&A" scenes that they go right back to grating.  Of course I want them to, at some point in the future, eventually work things out.  But this is NOT the time; it’s far too soon, and they have wwaaaayy too much baggage and crap to work through first.  So in the meantime when we're given scenes like, “Oh hey look!!  It’s A&A walking through Hong Kong and they’re gonna talk and we’re playing a pretty little emo tune in the background to tell you how you SHOULD be feeling about this!!  You should be heartwarmed!!”  I’m sorry but no.  Don’t tell me how to feel.  I have a brain in my head and it doesn't stop working the second a pretty little ditty starts playing in the background.  If I’m already feeling the way you want me to feel because you told the story in a way that puts me there, then awesome.  But if not, no.  Stop.  It’s just annoying.

And then we have the issue of how A&A are acting around each other right now, which is in a way that makes me want to stab.  Annie, it’s not that I don’t get that going dark has been hard on you ... I mean ... you did kill a dude in the meantime and you royally fucked over Sana and her husband.  I completely get that.  That’s rough.  But I still had to kinda chuckle at your “Sometimes I don’t remember what life was like before I went dark” thing considering that it’s only been 3 or 4 months.  And the next time you give Auggie puppy dog eyes, I am going to vomit.  Can we please take a tally of how many times you have apologized to him now, considering that he has apologized to you exactly ZERO times!?  And based on the way he slurped his noodles over there with nary a care in the world, I’m pretty sure he doesn’t think he did much of anything wrong here.  You took it all on yourself and he seems more than happy to go ahead and let you do that.  Oh my gosh but he’s holding your hand now though!!  He’s soooo sweet!!  Aww!!

Uggh.  All I can be happy for on that front is that we only had to endure a relatively small amount of it.  I pray there’s even less of it in the season finale.  Oh and what about Joan and Arthur in this ep?  I didn’t see it coming that Classy Lawyer Lady Bianca would be in Henry’s pocket, and I have to admit I was a little happy when she died.  She was pretty annoying.  And then the final scene where Henry’s hitmen dudes try to kill J&A ... it was, well it was unexpected and it played slightly oddly to me, though it certainly did have me on the edge of my seat.  If they had killed Joan I might have quit this show right then and there.  The part where she shot the dude was a little cheesy, especially the idea that she miraculously decided to check her phone just at the right time.  But by then I was just glad she wasn’t the one getting killed.

O.k. lemme give my few random thoughts before I summarize:
  • I thought it was kinda funny that they didn’t show the courier get hit by the car.  Maybe they ran out of time/money to deal with that with all the HK filming.  ;-)
  • Oliver to Walderson, re: their Henry Wilcox plan: “You’re going to fail.”  Correct.
  • So Braithwaite and Henry clearly worked out their differences, I guess.
  • Auggie rarely gets to have any fight action, but he got a pretty nice one in here.
  • Calder to Annie: “I think I’ve finally learned not to try to stop you when you’re mind’s made up.”  Yep.  My mom is exactly like this and I eventually learned that lesson with her too.  At least my mom’s not out there trying to take down bad guys and save the world.
I’m still totally confused by the end scene and what any of Team Walderson thought Annie was gonna be able to do *all by herself* against Henry and all his henchman while the rest of 'em waited for her at the plane.  But I guess like Calder said, he had just given up on trying to argue with her.  I don’t know what the hell her plan is, but we’ll have to see next week.  I’m also not entirely sure how I feel about this episode overall.  Like I said, it was a fun ep, but it’s times like this when being on Twitter is obnoxious.  Chris tweeted all day that it was literally the best ep they’ve EVER done, which is ... not true.  It was maybe the coolest to film for them, and visually it was great, but it’s in no way the best ep of the series.  The fact that it’s the penultimate ep of the season means that I hold it a lot more accountable to all the issues of the overall season and the overall Henry arc too.  So I’ll give it a ...

GRADE: 84/100

Fun ep if taken on its own ... but it certainly doesn’t magically resolve all the issues of season 4.  And it kind of needs to at this point for me to rate it super high.  What do you guys think?  Was Chris right on Twitter?  Am I wrong?  Tell me in the comments.

NOTE: I will be a teeny tiny bit late reviewing the season 4 finale next week, because while it airs, I will be sitting in a movie theater with a bunch of screaming teenage girls waiting to see the Catching Fire first midnight showing.  Because, obvi.  Where the hell else would I be??  Heh anyway I usually publish these early on Friday morning, but it’ll probably be a bit later in the day next Friday for the finale review.


  1. I liked it. But the way they plotted her capture was lazy. But then that's pretty much my summation for this season.

    Lazy plotting.

  2. WHAT THE DEUCE IS ANNIE DOING? Killing him would've been easier from a distance unless she's more of a hand to hand combat kind of girl (and I've seen her hand to hand combat skills she's iffy at best and no Auggie Anderson). I'd like to say she's just gonna try and rip his heart out but I don't think he has a heart so....that leaves....OH GOD, NO! Annie faked her death and just revealed to Henry that she in fact is alive and has been alive this whole time....OH NO....and that she hasn't stopped thinking about him not even for a second in these 4 lonely years...I mean months....IT CAN'T BE!....She's gonna bang him, right? (OK, I'm only kidding. I couldn't resist.) But for reals, what is she doing? Does she want some creepy Clarice/Dr. Lecter 'ship with him? Does she want to be besties and nail all the bad guys with Henry's help? I don't get it. And I'm not sure Auggie does either b/c he's been left to hang out at the airport and we all know what happens when he's left alone for too long. He gets confused and bangs people, they die, he cries about it, gets angry, and sends in special forces guys to bust some skulls. This is making me extremely excited for 16 now! :D

    I can't say anything too bad about this Ep. I enjoyed it. I, just like Chris Gorham, thought it was the BEST* ever!

    *the best they ever did in Hong Kong, in S4, with Hill Harper, with limited Walkerson

    Loved the location. The action. Calder. Oliver. And the not so much Walkerson bc ain't nobody got time for that right now. Joan. Arthur. And the fact that Bianca is either extremely dead or extremely comatose right now. She was as painfully useless as Helen and I only wish all the horses had trampled her.

    Things that annoyed me:
    Annie's earbuds...errr...earbud. She looked like she should've been listening to a football game or something hooked up to a radio. If she wanted it to pass for beebopping along to music or directions in her ear or something....maybe she should've like ummm not talked back into them with things like "I don't see him" "I've got him" GAHH!

    Noodle slurping over almost war stories and emo darkness and hand holding. Annie, you were dark for 4 seconds and not really b/c there were at least 3 folks who knew you were alive so come on! You never were truly hung out by yourself even tho you were by yourself so get the hell over yourself. And Auggie....I'm not even gonna go there. He bangs people and slurps noodles and is hell in a fist fight. Walkerson will survive despite their inability to communicate, their selfishness, and their selective amnesia, it's a match made in spy heaven! Ahh....

    On to the finale....
    Will Annie bang Henry?
    Will Auggie bang a delivery girl and cry about it when he gets her killed?
    Will Calder get a one way ticket back to Koh-luhmm-bee-ah?
    Will Joan ever have the baby?
    Will Walkerson reunite and bring down Henry once and for all and then have a beer and a bang afterwards? (not holding my breath for any of those)

    We shall see....DUN DUN DUNnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnNNNNnnn

    1. The look on Henry's face when he saw Annie (er, Annissica) was priceless. The tension was pretty high as I was expecting the old man to spit in her face, shoot her like he killed Helesa, or run crying into the sunset.
      Yup, Bianca was a turncoat, and it would have been fun for the horses to get spooked and stomp her into pudding. I would have liked the see her get on the horse and try to escape from Arthur - only to be thrown off - 'Just like Pa!!!' Nothing like a Gone with the Wind reference to kick of my weekend right...
      You bring up an awesome point with Annie being only half-assed in the dark. I am sure that at least half Langley knew that she was alive, but were humoring her. LOL.

    2. "She's gonna bang [Henry], right?" BRILLIANT revenge bang idea hahahaha.

      "And I'm not sure Auggie does either b/c he's been left to hang out at the airport and we all know what happens when he's left alone for too long." HAHAHA ... First off, he totally does NOT get it. It didn't look like he understood it at all when he was on the phone with her. We'll see though. And yeah dude, when Auggie's alone ... if only Frank's whoore from Always Sunny hadn't died a couple seasons ago ... she was a real good whoore.

      "[Annie] looked like she should've been listening to a football game or something hooked up to a radio." Tooootally noticed that too hahahaha hilarious. I use those to talk on my phone all the time because my old bluetooth broke and I never got a new one. But then on the other side of the issue, Auggie looked like Saul Goodman for the entire thing hahahaha. Better call Saul.

      John: "The look on Henry's face when he saw Annie (er, Annissica) was priceless." Hahahah that was definitely a good moment. I liked that his reaction was to laugh out of being impressed with the fact that she duped him.

      Shelby & John: "I only wish all the horses had trampled her." BWAHA this made me lol when I read it. It would have been such a fitting end.

      John: "I am sure that at least half Langley knew that she was alive, but were humoring her. LOL." HAHAH totally. Maybe that's why Joan's reaction to her being alive last week was so nonchalant.

  3. While I can understand that the gang can't just capture and kill Henry like I would like them too (Because it would leave them with precious little to do next week except for pour Calder's gift bottle of Blue Label on Henry's grave). I, however, see the gang as a modern-day group of Keystone Cops with their half-assed bumbling at times. I am still getting over how Annie was overpowered in Episode 414. At any rate, I want to know where Sana and her man are. And, speaking of unanswered questions, is Joan on her seventh trimester by now? I did think it was cool when she played the preggers card to do some sneaking around in the jewelry store in Episode 414. But enough about Episode 414. I agree about Annie being a lightweight with regard to going dark. She was in the dark for a New York minute (and much of it, she wasn't completely in the dark) and was about to crack worse than Toronto's mayor. Does this mean that Helen/Theresa/Helesa did a better job of playing dead? And I agree about the trying too hard thing with the background music and Walkerson waking a romantic stroll around Hong Kong --- When they should have been doing their damn secret mission work --- the emo music was a bit over the top as those APPLAUSE signs in studios are except the emo music was supposed to be our cue to grab our hankies and Merlot. I did get some satisfaction from Joan and Arthur taking care of business on their end. Those hit men did not have a chance, they would have been better off wearing red shirts on Star Trek! Now that the plane has left with Calder and Oliver, I am hoping that Auggie and Annie get Henry this time. And I definitely agree that Henry is turning into a bit of a cartoon - like a paunchy, creepy version of the Road Runner. ACME don't fail us now!

    1. "I, however, see the gang as a modern-day group of Keystone Cops with their half-assed bumbling at times."

      Exactly. They've bumbled their way through the whole season and while I think a large amount of setbacks is to be expected, I just wish less of it was due to insane, inexplicable, and DUMBass decisions the characters were so often making along the way. That's the part that kills me.

      "At any rate, I want to know where Sana and her man are." Me too!!

      "is Joan on her seventh trimester by now?" SEEEERIOUSLY!! Kari Matchett had her baby SO early on in filming the season that she must have been wearing a fake belly for most of the damn season anyway ahahaha. It's like one of those Jessica Simpson pregnancies, it just never ends.

      "Does this mean that Helen/Theresa/Helesa did a better job of playing dead?" LMAO I was thinking the SAME thing. She played dead for like 7 damn years. Annie made it through one fiscal quarter, tops hahahaa.

      "...except the emo music was supposed to be our cue to grab our hankies and Merlot." My Twitter feed seems to indicate that 98% of their audience bought this hook line and sinker. I just don't ... get it.

      "I did get some satisfaction from Joan and Arthur taking care of business on their end." Agreed, I was glad they didn't bite it, especially Joan. ;-)

  4. One of the many awesome things about GAME OF THRONES is that the finale isn't about the big moments. It's the aftermath of big moments. It's the only show I'm aware of to ever do that.

    I'd love to see another show not be so predictable as to put all the big moments in the finale and instead make the finale just about people picking up the pieces.

    1. Word, I would LOVE that too ... I feel like maybe The Wire did that in one or two of their season-enders, or maybe I'm making that up haha. I really should remember that considering that we only just finished season 5 like a couple months ago ahahha.

      Anyway it would especially be nice to see on CA considering the way the aftermath of literally every major thing that happens is either barely touched or skipped over completely. It's the thing that drives me more insane about this show than anything else. Since I just started GoT I'll be curious to see how they do it.

    2. I vaguely remember that the finale episodes of The Sopranos were often "aftermath" type episodes.

  5. Ratings update on the 10/31 episode "No. 13 Baby"

    Live + SD: 0.47
    Live + 7 Days: .97 (+108%)

    Other stats (Live + 7)
    Total Viewers: 3.63 million
    Median Age: 57
    Viewing group with highest rating: Women 65+

    1. Thanks SO much for the info again you are awesome!!! Glad to know 70 year old ladies are getting a ton of enjoyment from this show ahahahha. Oh well at least the 18-49 and total viewers were slightly improved from the prior week. ;-)

    2. LMAO!! Hey at least it's slightly younger than Hawaii 5-0 and The Good Wife, I saw MediaSavant tweet the other day that the median age for those shows (for eps aired earlier on Nov.) was 62 hahahahaha. I think maybe I had seen in the past that for Castle it was like ... 54 or 55 and I always thought that was old. Guess was I wrong.

    3. CBS skews very old anyway. USA is supposed to be one of the younger demo networks, if I remember correctly.

    4. Hahaha true, for some reason I always forget that The Good Wife airs on CBS.